Tag Archive: freedom of speech


Adam Kokesh is a Political Prisoner

Daisy Luther
Activist Post

The establishment has made no secret of the fact that they are not very impressed with Adam Kokesh’s planned Open Carry March on Washington DC this coming July 4.

But yesterday the situation devolved to a new low when Kokesh was arrested for….doing nothing.

The controversial talk-radio host of Adam Vs. the Man has been made a political prisoner.

A “political prisoner” is defined as:

A person who has been imprisoned for holding or advocating dissenting political views. source

Regardless of your personal beliefs on whether marijuana should be legalized, if you believe that freedom of speech is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution, what happened at the May 18 “Smoke Down Prohibition” event in Philadelphia is a clear-cut violation of Kokesh’s rights. While other people there were actually breaking the law and smoking in an act of civil disobedience, Kokesh was not – he was simply speaking.

Adam Kokesh is being charged with resisting arrest…Check out the video – all I see is a man with his hands up (and no marijuana in those hands either). You don’t have to be an expert on the law to see that he went with the officers peacefully.


Does this mean that only popular opinions are protected by the Constitution? Does this mean that the Constitution is no longer in effect for those who disagree with the current laws? Or is this something more sinister? Perhaps an attempt to prevent Kokesh’s planned march on July 4 for occurring?

Read Full Article Here

Sheriff’s Deputy threatened for speaking out against federal power grabs

By J. D. Heyes,

(NaturalNews) It’s not supposed to be against the law to speak your mind and what’s more, Americans depend on the nation’s lawmakers and law enforcement officers to uphold the Constitution’s protections. But what about when a law enforcement agency is denying one of its own the right to speak his mind about, say, the intrusion of the federal government into state and local business?

In some parts of the country, exercising that right is apparently not allowed. Enter Trinity County, Calif., where the sheriff – Bruce Haney – has found himself embroiled in a civil rights lawsuit filed by one of his deputies, Mark Potts, for allegedly punishing Potts over comments he made about the federal Leviathan in a series of editorials in the local newspaper.

Potts, who filed his complaint in U.S. District Court in Sacramento, said in court papers he was seeking to “vindicate” his “free speech rights” under “federal and state constitutional and statutory law.”

“Defendant officers of the Trinity County Sheriff’s Office have reprimanded Mr. Potts for engaging in expressive political speech and have prohibited him from speaking as a citizen on important matters of public concern,” the complaint reads.

“This action seeks declaratory and injunctive relief to redress the violation of Mr. Potts’ rights under the United States Constitution, the California Constitution, and the Public Safety Officers’ Procedural Bill of Rights Act (POBRA).”

According to the complaint, Potts said he began writing politically themed letters to the editor of the The Trinity Journal newspaper “several years ago.”

No disruption in the work place

“These letters, authored and signed by Mr. Potts in his capacity as a private citizen, addressed a variety of topics of public concern, including the wisdom and constitutionality of various laws, and the appropriate scope of federal governmental authority,” the complaint said.

The complaint went onto say that Potts was not in uniform nor did he use public/county resources when writing his editorials.

His “letters have never caused a disruption of the workplace, affected the performance of his job duties, or otherwise interfered with the operations of the Sheriff’s Office,” said the complaint, adding that during the course of his official duties, he “consistently received positive performance reviews.”

Prior to Haney’s 2010 election as Trinity County Sheriff, the complaint says, the county district attorney asked then-Sheriff Lorrac Craig to force Potts to discontinue writing his letters, a request that Craig refused to carry out.

After Haney assumed his office in January 2011, he and “Undersheriff Ken Langton called Mr. Potts in for a meeting to discuss his letters to the editor,” says the complaint. “Sheriff Haney stated that the District Attorney had threatened not to prosecute any cases that Mr. Potts investigated if he continued to write letters to the editor, and that Mr. Potts needed to stop writing letters to the editor.”

Some months later, in August of last year, the complaint says Potts was once more warned to stop writing his letters by sheriff’s deputy Sgt. Ray Hurlbert, who allegedly said Potts’ letters were a “problem” for the department.

“Mr. Potts asked for guidance on the scope of the prohibition of his written expression but was never provided with guidance on what topics would be deemed by the Sheriff’s Office to be acceptable or unacceptable,” said the complaint. “Unable to obtain any clarification from the Sheriff’s Office about the scope of any prohibition, Mr. Potts understood the Office either to be imposing a blanket ban on all letters to the editor, or to be requiring Mr. Potts to draw his own line between” what he felt was and was not appropriate.

Sought guidance but a reprimand instead

The complaint said Potts published four more letters to the editor in the local paper between October and November 2011 on topics ranging from “drug policy, including drug legalization, and the right to carry concealed weapons.”

“On December 5, 2011, Sgt. Hurlburt provided Mr. Potts with written notice of an administrative investigation into his expressive letter-writing activities,” said the complaint. “The notice letter cited six provisions of the Trinity County Sheriff’s Office Policy Manual and explained that Mr. Potts was being investigated for possible violations of these provisions. Mr. Potts was ordered to appear for an interrogation concerning the potential violations.”

Two weeks later, the department conducted “an investigatory interrogation” of Potts, in which he objected “on the grounds that his free speech rights were being violated.”

In February, the department issued Potts a formal reprimand for his conduct, saying that by writing his letters he was in violation of a number of departmental policies. Potts stopped writing letters following his reprimand.

In March, Potts; through his attorneys, asked Trinity County to expunge the reprimand from his work record, a request that was denied a month later.

There is an old saying in the military that goes, “We’re here to defend democracy, not practice it.” It sounds like that’s the case in Trinity County, Calif. as well.

Sources:

http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/07/09/FirstAmend.pdf

www.naturalnews.com/free_speech.html

www.naturalnewsradio.com/Archive-HealthRangerReport.asp

US officials pursue Julian Assange

Published on Jul 2, 2012 by

The evidence that the US is pursuing to have Wikileaks founder Julian Assange extradited to America is becoming more obvious. Assange still awaits in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for political asylum to South America, but while he remains trapped, democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein has issued a statement to an Australian newspaper demanding that the whistleblower be prosecuted. Trevor Timm, an activist for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, joins us with more on the hunt for Assange.

Anonymous comments to be banned from the Internet?

Published on Jun 11, 2012 by

The Internet is known for its seductive allure of anonymity, giving the individual the encouragement to speak one’s mind. In New York, a couple of lawmakers are planning on banning unidentified comments online. Anastasia Churkina brings us more from the streets of New York.

New York wants to ban online anonymity

Published on Jun 11, 2012 by

Many Internet users love the fact that they can speak out about certain issues under the blanket of Anonymity. Being able to secretively leave remarks online may soon be a thing of the past if New York lawmakers get their way and the notion is supposed to help thwart cyber-bullying going on online.So should we have the right to say what we want on the web without disclosing our personal information? News commentator T.J. Walker joins us to help answer that question.

Four years ago, undercover video recorded workers on forklifts forcing “downer” cows into slaughter at the Hallmark and Westland meat plant in Chino, CA, which at the time was a top supplier to the USDA
The sting, by the Humane Society of the United States, put Hallmark and Westland out of business. When USDA saw the undercover video, it demanded the largest beef recall in U.S. history and it immediately cut off Hallmark and Westland from the lucrative school lunch business.
The damaged meat going to the National School Lunch program was also the subject of a $150 million lawsuit against Hallmark and Westland.
Other animal rights organizations have pulled off their own stings since the big one at Chino.   These undercover investigations usually involve sending someone in to get a job with the company being targeted.
Until now, whenever one of these undercover videos was released, it usually meant whoever owned the animal facility where abuses were filmed was in big trouble.
But not any more in Iowa. Within a few hours on Wednesday, the Iowa Senate took up an “ag-gag” bill, made some amendments, and passed it on a 40-10 vote. The House then immediately took up the Senate changes and approved them without debate on a 69-28 vote.
The bill, House File 589, now on Iowa House File 589‘s desk, is all but certain to be signed into law, and it will be the first “ag-gag” law in America, says Nathan Runkle, executive director of Chicago-based Mercy for Animals (MFA), an animal rights group that has been active in Iowa.
The new law, if it passes constitutional muster, could turn the tables on animal rights groups doing these undercover investigations. It gives Iowa’s county sheriffs a long list of possible violations to charge once it is disclosed that any filming or recording was done without the permission of the animal facility owner.
If the Iowa law had been in effect in California in 2008, Hallmark and Westland would have been able to go to court claiming status as victims of “animal facility tampering” for an “amount equaling three times all the actual and consequential damages” against “the person causing the damages.”
“This flawed and misdirected legislation could set a dangerous precedent nationwide by throwing shut the doors to industrial factory farms and allowing animal abuse, environmental violations, and food contamination issues to flourish undetected, unchallenged and unaddressed,” says Runkle.  “This bill is bad for consumers, who want more, not less, transparency in production of their food.”
Some of the more likely unconstitutional language was removed from the bill, but Runkle told Food Safety News the intent of the legislation remains exactly the same – “to shield animal abusers from public scrutiny and prosecute investigators who dare to expose animal cruelty, environmental violations, dangerous working conditions or food safety concerns.”
Animal rights organizations like HSUS and MFA – working with investigators to expose violations – could themselves be prosecuted under the new Iowa law.  And, the law does not just apply to animal facilities but also any “crop operation.”
Recent investigations by MFA in Iowa are certainly among those getting the attention of lawmakers. In 2011, the Chicago animal rights group turned its cameras on a large Iowa egg farm owned by Sparboe, and an Iowa Select Farms pig operation.
It found over-crowding in battery cages, some containing dead hens, on the egg farm, and at the pig operation sows being penned in confinement cages and testicles being removed from piglets without painkillers.
 And in 2009, MFA exposed the Iowa-based Hy-Line Hatchery’s practice of throwing more than 150,000 live male chicks into grinding machines every day.
Runkle says passage of the  “ag-gag” law proves Iowa agriculture “has a lot to hide.”
“This law is un-American and a broad government overreach. It seeks to shield animal abusers from public scrutiny and prosecute the brave whistleblowers who dare to speak out against animal cruelty, environmental pollution and corporate corruption.”
The new law shields animal abusers from public scrutiny, makes criminals out of those who dare to expose cruelty to farm animals and threatens the consumers’ right to know, according to the MFA.
Wayne Pacelle, president and chief executive of HSUS, has written Gov. Branstad, urging the Republican governor to veto HF 589.
 “The intent of this bill is simple: shield animal agribusiness from public scrutiny by punishing whistleblowers and protecting animal abusers,” wrote Pacelle. “By signing this bill into law, animal agribusiness will have unbridled and unchecked power over worker safety, public health and animal welfare.”
Pacelle said the Iowa Senate and House rushed the bill through at a speed rarely found in the legislative process. Normally, he said, deliberations of such consequence take weeks, or at least several days.
Iowa’s sudden passage of an “ag-gag” law has brought together opposition to these state measures by a broad spectrum of national organizations, including animal rights, civil liberties, public health, food safety, public health, environmental and other groups.
Many see HF589 as an unconstitutional infringement on First Amendment rights.
Ag-gag bills were introduced in four states last year, including Iowa. None of those passed.  This year, ag-gag bills have been introduced in Utah, Nebraska, Minnesota, Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Florida and New York.
The Florida bill was defeated.  Except for Iowa, the others are pending.
The Wednesday night passage of the Iowa ag-gag bill came with support from some of the state’s most powerful agricultural lobbyists including: The Institute for Cooperatives, The Agribusiness Association of Iowa, Iowa Select Farms, Iowa Cattlemen’s Association, Iowa Dairy Association, Iowa Farm Bureau, Iowa Corn Growers Association and Monsanto Co.
Under the new law, anyone making “a false statement or representation” as part of an application of employment at an animal facility could, after a first conviction, be charged with a class D felony.
To produce a record of image or sound without the owner’s permission is defined as the new crime of “animal facility interference.”

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/03/iowa-approves-nations-first-ag-gag-law/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=120301

Uploaded by on Feb 26, 2012

http://www.youtube.com/ancapchase | The producer of Stupid in America, John Stossel, broadcasts another outstanding documentary “Illegal Everything” which shows how nearly everything is (or may soon be) illegal – including lemonade stands, raw milk, drugs, fast food, prostitution, recording police, and more.

Thursday, January 26, 2012
Obama Signs ACTA even Worse Than SOPA

Obama Signs Global Internet Treaty Worse Than SOPA : Special Report on Obama bypassing the senate to sign agreement named Anti-Conterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) bound by International Law NOT U.S law which will have implications for Internet Freedom in United States.ACTA will ruin the Internet as we know it.It’s already been signed. We are too late guys… I guess it’s over, a new age of censorship is here But of course it is for our own good and because our governments love us that they are invading our privacy… I think this is worse than the Mayans predicted….


http://geraldcelentechannel.blogspot.com/2012/01/obama-signs-acta-worse-than-sopa.html

Acta protests break out as EU states sign up to treaty

MEPs of 21 EU states, including the UK, have signed off on the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/jan/27/acta-protests-eu-states-sign-treaty

If You Thought SOPA Was Bad, Just Wait Until You Meet ACTA

http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2012/01/23/if-you-thought-sopa-was-bad-just-wait-until-you-meet-acta/

Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA)

Process

The United States, Australia, Canada, Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Morocco, and Singapore signed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) at a ceremony on October 1, 2011, in Tokyo, marking an important step forward in the international fight against trademark counterfeiting and copyright piracy. Representatives of the remaining ACTA negotiating parties, the European Union, Mexico, and Switzerland, attended the ceremony and confirmed their continuing strong support for and preparations to sign the Agreement as soon as practicable. The next step in bringing the ACTA into force is the deposit of instruments of ratification, acceptance, or approval from each of the signatories. The agreement will enter into force following the deposit of the sixth such instrument.

http://www.ustr.gov/acta

Uploaded by on Jan 18, 2012

ACTA – ‘The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement’ is a proposed plurilateral agreement for the purpose of establishing international standards on intellectual property rights enforcement.

ACTA would establish a new international legal framework that would create its “own governing body outside existing international institutions” such as – the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) or the United Nations.

An open letter signed by many organizations, including Consumers International, EDRi (27 European civil rights and privacy NGOs), the Free Software Foundation (FSF), the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), ASIC (French trade association for web 2.0 companies), and the Free Knowledge Institute (FKI), states that “the current draft of ACTA would profoundly restrict the fundamental rights and freedoms of European citizens, most notably the freedom of expression and communication privacy.”

[UPDATE] – It seems, SOPA and PIPA were just distractions! while they signed a copyright treaty “ACTA” behind the curtain…

US, Australia, Japan, Switzerland, and many EU nations have already signed this secret censorship pact last year in 2011.
The Recent country to join the list is – Poland.

http://video.nixxon.net/~riesling/acta/
http://www.stop-acta.info/
Pls sign this petition – http://www.avaaz.org/en/eu_save_the_internet_spread


Uploaded by 123abckickass on Oct 21, 2011

As of oct 1st,several countrys including Canada and USA have signed the treaty enabling ACTA to take place. whats going to happen now? guess we have to wait and see

Born Again American
is committed to the rebirth and re-expression of citizenship through informed and thoughtful activism. It is an initiative of Declare Yourself, a national non-partisan, non-profit (501(c)3) organization dedicated to increasing young voter participation and civic involvement. Declare Yourself’s on-line voter registration tool has been used by almost four million people since 2004. Declare Yourself grew out of the 2003’s Declaration of Independence Road Trip that toured an original 1776 copy of the Declaration to schools, town halls, and other locations all over the country.

About the Video
Our founder, TV producer and philanthropist Norman Lear, was talking with Academy Award-winning songwriter Keith Carradine one night, and the Born Again American video was, well, born. It took the efforts of Director Mark Johnson of Playing for Change, Producer Brent Miller, and 16 performers and two choruses to bring Keith’s song to life in 14 iconic locations around the USA. The singers and musicians, non-professionals all, were chosen because they are living the lyrics in these troubled times, not just performing them.

http://www.bornagainamerican.org/

 

 

BORN AGAIN AMERICAN
By Keith Carradine

Just a workin’ man without a job
It got shipped off to China via Washington, D.C.
And I know I’m nothin’ special, there are plenty more like me
Just the same
I thought I knew the rules of the game

I stood up for this country that I love
I came back from the desert to a wife and kids to feed
I’m not sayin’ Uncle Sam should give me what I need
My offer stands
I’ll pull my weight you give me half a chance

I went up to a congressman and said to him “you know
Our government is letting people down”
He said he’d need a lot of help to buck the status-quo
I said there was a bunch of us around

I’m a Born Again American, conceived in Liberty
My Bible and the Bill of Rights, my creed’s equality
I’m a Born Again American, my country ‘tis of me
And everyone who shares the dream from sea to shining sea

My brother’s welding chassis at the plant
He’s earning what our granddad did in 1948
While CEOs count bonuses behind the castle gates
How can they see
When all they care about’s the do re mi

It’s getting where there’s nowhere left to turn
Not since the crash of twenty-nine have things been so unfair
So many of our citizens are living in despair
The time has come
To reaffirm that hope’s not just for some

The promise of America’s surrendering to greed
The rule is just look out for number one
But brace yourself ‘cause some of us have sown a different seed
A harvest of the spirit has begun

I’m a Born Again American conceived in liberty
My Bible and The Bill Of Rights
My creed’s equality
A Born Again American, my country ‘tis of me
And everyone who shares the dream from sea to shining sea

It’s clear my country’s soul is on the line
She’s hungering for something that she lost along the way
The principle the framers called upon us to obey
That in this land
The people’s will must have the upper hand

I felt the calling once before and took a sacred vow
And faithful to that vow I have remained
I hear the calling once again, my country needs me now
And to her cause I have been re-ordained

I’m a Born Again American conceived in liberty
My Bible and the Bill Of Rights, all people living free
A Born Again American, my country ‘tis of me
And everyone who shares the dream
From sea to shining sea
And everyone who shares the dream
From sea to shining sea
A M E R I C A

Ok  here  we  go.  I  have  said  it  before  and  I  will say  it  again.  Ready  or  not  this situation  will  come.  Whether  you  want  to  accept  it  or  not  the  writing is on the  wall.  Americans  have opted  to believe  that   our  freedoms  and our  comforts  are a  given.  They  have   become  complacent  believing that life  will continue  as  it  has  been  for so long.  The  rude  awakening is  upon  us.  Some of us  are   cognizant and  very  much aware  of  what  is  going on.  Will you  be  ready,  will you  do  what it  takes  to  insure  a  future  for  your  children  and  grandchildren?  Are  you  even  aware  of  what  is  going on  around  you ?

Alex Jones is not everyone’s  cup of  tea, but the  simple  truth  is  he speaks  the  truth.  Uncomfortable  or  not he  speaks the  truth.  Russell Means is a  well respected  activist who also  happens  to be a Native  American Indian.  Here  is  the  series  where Alex  interviews  Russell Means  and  what  he has  to  say  about  what  he  sees  happening in  America  today.

Uploaded by TheAlexJonesChannel on Jan 25, 2012

Alex talks to legendary native American activist, actor Russell Means about the decline of the American culture and the rise of global imperialism.
http://www.republicoflakotah.com/
http://www.infowars.com/
http://www.prisonplanet.tv/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wzz-axYZurE&feature=player_embedded#!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ew4LLlKL94&feature=related

 

 

SOPA not dead! H.R. 3782(OPEN) introduced. 08 Law

PRO-IP is being enforced

http://www.activistpost.com/2012/01/sopa-and-pipa-fully-alive-and-n…

Actually, SOPA is set to be reformulated in February. PIPA will be revisited with possible amendments in the coming weeks. Case in point, all is still open and possible — nothing is dead, pulled, or cancelled. If that wasn’t enough to keep us on our toes, a new, similar bill has surfaced.

Déjà Vu in the form of OPEN — The New Anti-Piracy Bill

As an alternative to SOPA-PIPA, Representative Darrell Issa (CA-R), and 24 co-sponsors introduced the Online Protection and Enforcement of Digital Trade (OPEN) H.R. 3782 on Wednesday, during the Internet blackout.

From PCWorld:

OPEN would give oversight to the International Trade Commission (ITC) instead of the Justice Department, focuses on foreign-based websites, includes an appeals process, and would apply only to websites that “willfully” promote copyright violation.

The bill pretends to only target foreign websites, while keeping Americans free to surf and post, but the bill’s wording is wide open to pursue American sites. Just one example: when describing an infringing site, it starts with those “that are accessed through a non-domestic domain name,” but continues in section (8)(A)(ii) for any site that “conducts business directed to residents of the United States.”

It sounds like, “in general,” copyright holders will be the ones filing complaints to the Commission, but the writing leaves it open for any complainant to file. The ITC would still have the ability to coerce payment processors and ad networks to cease funding and linking the accused in question. Who could determine “willful” infringement?

Also, none of these bills had been decided before the U.S. Government took down New Zealand owned Megaupload.com during the commotion. To which, Anonymous responded by shutting down the websites of the U.S. Department of Justice, Universal Music, Recording Industry Association of America, the U.S. Copyright Office, Broadcast Music Inc. and the Motion Picture Association of America.

“The [DOJ’s] action ‘demonstrates why we don’t need SOPA in the first place,’ points out PCWorld’s Tony Bradley.” The government was enforcing a previous anti-piracy law called PRO-IP signed by Bush in 2008.

OPEN is gaining support from groups like Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Consumer Electronics Association and more.

While it seems admirable that the bill is transparent and open for public comment, most laws of this nature are broad and allow for bigger, no-common sense crackdowns later. Plus, there might only be a couple concessions and the pacifying effects of “being heard.”

One commenter of the bill aptly noted:

‘Reasonable belief’ and ‘credible evidence’ are too vague and have the appearance of inviting highly subjective interpretation with the option for the commission and/or the provider to exercise sweeping powers with impunity.

Whenever any group is appeased after a battle, it cannot be emphasized enough — the lawmakers’ modus operandi will be: aim high, brace for the outcry, make a couple alterations and sneak the bill back in when no one’s looking. Keep it going and going. Call it by a different name. Haggle. It appears there is compromise and reasoning now, but once the bill passes into law, reason goes out the window, and we are the only ones compromised.

Theft is a reality — although not one that has seriously damaged the growing entertainment industry, or caused massive death and devastation. If Hollywood, pitching the biggest fit, were actually going down, why should we go down with it?

It is more unfortunate that Americans must be so tirelessly vigilant to protect their online activities from the same lawmakers who are tanking the country in so many other truly devastating ways.

The dismantling of Internet freedom will not stop here. Let’s borrow an MO and not let up.

To SOPA — Say NOPA!

To PIPA — Pipe down!

To OPEN — Shut it!

BE THE CHANGE! PLEASE SHARE THIS USING THE TOOLS BELOW

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