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Dear America: What the hell happened to us?

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Marti Oakley

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“Our government has done more to harm us than any supposed terrorists could have done. They have and are taking our freedom away a day at a time. We are now under constant surveillance and spied on by government agencies. We cannot write an email, text a friend, drive down the road, board a plane, talk on our phones or even shop without our messages being intercepted and logged, our calls being recorded, our license plates being scanned, our face    being photographed and our fingerprints and dna collected at every conceivable opportunity.  So who is it that the government is really afraid of? Some supposed terrorist “over there”,…..or…YOU?”

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The View from a Political Atheist

After years of writing about the egregious conduct of the federal and state governments, and, after watching the public sitting idly by while our rights are violated especially under this bogus “war on terror”, I have to wonder what happened to us? Maybe the better question is….what happened to so many of you? When did you lose your sense of who you are and where you come from, and what that should represent? Why are so many so quick to label those who are sounding the alarms that something has gone terribly wrong, as being “conspiracy theorists?” Or maybe, leftists, or neo-cons, communists, etc… These labels and others like them serve no purpose but to keep us divided and warring amongst our selves while those orchestrating our demise continue their insidious work. In the end, they all coalesce into the same group. That political divide that so many of us love to argue, is an illusion.

As a political atheist, I firmly believe that if a politician’s lips are moving and sound is coming out…there is a good chance they are lying to us.

We are the terrorists we fear More

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A Week in the Life of the American Police State

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By John W. Whitehead

June 20, 2016

This commentary is also
available at www.rutherford.org.

“Those who corrupt the public mind are just as evil as those who steal from the public purse.”—Adlai Stevenson, 23rd Vice President of the United States

If you’ve been caught up in the circus that is the presidential election, you’ve likely missed the latest news about all the ways in which the government continues to erode our freedoms, undermine our sovereignty, abuse our trust, invade our homes, invade our privacy, destroy our property, hijack our bank accounts, and generally render itself above the law.

Then again, this is all par for the course from a militaristic government that is armed to the teeth, wages war against its own people, imprisons its citizens for profit, marches in lockstep with the corporate elite, and treats human beings as little more than cattle to be branded, bought, sold and butchered.

The following incidents constitute a typical week in the life of the American police state.

Not content with merely spying on our emails and phone calls, the NSA wants to spy on thermostats, refrigerators, and pacemakers.

Reinforcing fears about how easily surveillance technology can be abused by government officials, local police in California are using money acquired through asset forfeiture to buy surveillance equipment that was then used to blackmail city council members.

Small-town police departments continue to militarize their forces, acquiring military equipment such as BearCat armored vehicles and SWAT teams at an alarming rate.

According to the Government Accountability Office, the majority of people in the government’s criminal face-recognition database have never committed a crime.

The private prison business is booming, signaling a profitable windfall for investors and a death knell for any American unfortunate enough to run afoul of the many laws criminalizing otherwise legitimate behavior such as growing a garden on one’s front lawn or hosting a Bible study in one’s backyard. More

Prisons Without Walls: We’re All Inmates in the American Police State

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By John W. Whitehead
June 15, 2015

This commentary is also available at www.rutherford.org.
“It is perfectly possible for a man to be out of prison and yet not free—to be under no physical constraint and yet be a psychological captive, compelled to think, feel and act as the representatives of the national state, or of some private interest within the nation wants him to think, feel and act. . . . To him the walls of his prison are invisible and he believes himself to be free.”—Aldous Huxley, A Brave New World Revisited

“Free worlders” is prison slang for those who are not incarcerated behind prison walls. Supposedly, those fortunate souls live in the “free world.” However, appearances can be deceiving.

“As I got closer to retiring from the Federal Bureau of Prisons,” writes former prison employee Marlon

ABOUT JOHN WHITEHEAD  Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His new book Battlefield America: The War on the American People (SelectBooks, 2015) is available online at www.amazon.com. He can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org.

ABOUT JOHN WHITEHEAD
Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His new book Battlefield America: The War on the American People (SelectBooks, 2015) is available online at http://www.amazon.com. He can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org.

Brock, “it began to dawn on me that the security practices we used in the prison system were being implemented outside those walls.” In fact, if Brock is right, then we “free worlders” do live in a prison—albeit, one without visible walls.

In federal prisons, cameras are everywhere in order to maintain “security” and keep track of the prisoners. Likewise, the “free world” is populated with video surveillance and tracking devices. From surveillance cameras in stores and street corners to license plate readers (with the ability to log some 1,800 license plates per hour) on police cars, our movements are being tracked virtually everywhere. With this increasing use of iris scanners and facial recognition software—which drones are equipped with—there would seem to be nowhere to hide.

Detection and confiscation of weapons (or whatever the warden deems “dangerous”) in prison is routine. The inmates must be disarmed. Pat downs, checkpoints, and random searches are second nature in ferreting out contraband.

Sound familiar?

Metal detectors are now in virtually all government buildings. There are the TSA scanning devices and metal detectors we all have to go through in airports. Police road blocks and checkpoints are used to perform warrantless searches for contraband. Those searched at road blocks can be searched for contraband regardless of their objections—just like in prison. And there are federal road blocks on American roads in the southwestern United States. Many of them are permanent and located up to 100 miles from the border.

Stop and frisk searches are taking place daily across the country. Some of them even involve anal and/or vaginal searches. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court has approved strip searches even if you are arrested for a misdemeanor—such as a traffic stop. Just like a prison inmate.

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You’re Either a Cop, or Little People: The American Police State in 2014

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By John W. Whitehead

Speak Truth to Power

December 30, 2014

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“Now there are those who still insist that they are beyond the reach of the police state because they have done nothing wrong and have nothing to fear. To those sanctimonious few, secure in their delusions, let this be a warning: the danger posed by the American police state applies equally to all of us”

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“You’re either a cop or little people.”—Police captain Harry Bryant in Blade Runner

untitledvvvFor those of us who have managed to survive 2014 with our lives intact and our freedoms hanging by a thread, it has been a year of crackdowns, clampdowns, shutdowns, showdowns, shootdowns, standdowns, knockdowns, putdowns, breakdowns, lockdowns, takedowns, slowdowns, meltdowns, and never-ending letdowns.

We’ve been held up, stripped down, faked out, photographed, frisked, fracked, hacked, tracked, cracked, intercepted, accessed, spied on, zapped, mapped, searched, shot at, tasered, tortured, tackled, trussed up, tricked, lied to, labeled, libeled, leered at, shoved aside, saddled with debt not of our own making, sold a bill of goods about national security, tuned out by those representing us, tossed aside, and taken to the cleaners.

As I point out in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, we’ve had our freedoms turned inside out, our democratic structure flipped upside down, and our house of cards left in a shambles. More

Mark Dankof: Why We’re Finished

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Mark Dankof’s America

“The Old American Republic is dead. The American Empire wants to destroy all of us who believe in Republic, not in Empire. I see no reason to believe the American public has the insight and the guts to stand up to this onslaught. We Are Truly Finished.”

I have been receiving a lot of mail from folks asking why I’ve taken a mild leave of absence from broadcasting and writing op-ed pieces for The Ugly Truth. I will appear from time to time, but on a more limited basis, both with The Ugly Truth and Press TV. I’ve been reassessing what good I’m actually doing, given the seemingly inexorable and disastrous direction the American Empire has embarked upon, and what seems like the absolute passivity and indifference of the American public to their own fate in all of this, not to mention the world. In more recent times, I’ve been working on theological articles while preparing to resume my thesis for my last degree along with some theological German study. I’m also job hunting to supplement my income as I assess the future. The bottom line is this: The title of this piece tells you what I’ve concluded about the country and the American people. It isn’t a happy endgame. What appears below are my latest thoughts at the present time.]

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dankofinwashingtondc2011As he was preparing to leave office in 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned that “America must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence…by the military-industrial complex.” Borrowing the title from the Frank Capra Defense Department propaganda films of World War II, documentary film maker Eugene Jarecki chronicled the Eisenhower warning in Why We Fight, a production that would win the Grand Jury Prize at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival.

I vaguely remember Eisenhower. What I didn’t know as a little boy in the summer of 1960 when my family piled into my Dad’s new white Plymouth Station Wagon to depart Alexandria, Virginia for McClellan Air Force Base in Sacramento, was the fact that Dad was working for the Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC), the intelligence organization created by Eisenhower to work with the CIA and the AEC in monitoring Soviet nuclear tests, explosions, and missile sites around the world. I did not know that my father was acquainted with Eisenhower, Curtis LeMay, Paul Tibbets of the Enola Gay, and many other storied names of the Second World War and the Cold War that followed. I would learn a number of things about Dad in the decades that followed. There are many other things I never learned, even as he was losing both coherence and consciousness in the final days of his life in San Antonio in May of 2009. Allen Dulles was correct. There are some things that remain secret “from inception to eternity.”

In 1961, as a denizen of kindergarten at the Arthur S. Dudley Elementary School on an American Air Force reservation in Sacramento, I also had no idea that my father would also become acquainted with President Kennedy. All I knew was that Kennedy was the most handsome and dynamic man I’d ever seen on TV, with the most beautiful wife to match. With Kennedy in office, watching Arnold Palmer on TV winning the British Open, making many trips to San Francisco’s Candlestick Park to see Willie Mays in his prime, and trekking to old Kezar Stadium to watch the football 49ers, my idyllic childhood on the West Coast was wedded to an America filled with hope, youth, and limitless future. Mythology and visual images seemed to correspond with reality. The realities of what Seymour Hersh would reveal in his 1996 chronicle of the Kennedy years entitled “The Dark Side of Camelot,” did not correspond to my universe as a kid in the America of the early 1960s. More

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