FW: Article on HR1955 (Thought Crimes Bill)

From: Andrew Johnson

Date: 2007-11-18 10:11:09

Neocon Attack on Ron Paul: Greasing the Skids for Implementation of H.R. 1955? Kurt NimmoTruthNewsNovember 15, 2007 It has all the hallmarks of a concerted effort—the corporate media, in particular Glenn Beck and Bill O’Reilly, are attacking Ron Paul and the 9/11 truth movement at the very moment H.R. 1955, entitled the “Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007″ (although more accurately entitled the Thought Crime Bill) inches its way toward the Senate, having passed the House of Representatives, that is to say the house of corporate and neocon whores in the District of Criminals. As if to send a strident message they mean business, a Ministry of Homeland Security subcommittee on “terrorism risk assessment” went out of its way on November 6 to conflate so-called jihad terrorism—you know, terrorism engineered by the CIA—with 9/11 truth. “Under the guise of a bill that calls for the study of ‘homegrown terrorism,’ Congress is apparently trying to broaden the definition of terrorism to encompass both First Amendment political activity and traditional forms of protest such as nonviolent civil disobedience, according to civil liberties advocates, scholars and historians,” writes Jessica Lee. “Many observers fear that the proposed law will be used against U.S.-based groups engaged in legal but unpopular political activism, ranging from political Islamists to animal-rights and environmental campaigners to radical right-wing organizations. There is concern, too, that the bill will undermine academic integrity and is the latest salvo in a decade-long government grab for power at the expense of civil liberties.” Of course, “political Islamists,” at least here in America, are too intimidated—thanks to the Palmeresque round-up and sadistic abuse of Muslims in the wake of September 11, 2001—to be of serious concern to the neocon-hijacked government. Many of the “animal-rights and environmental campaigners” fall into the category of the big foundation controlled opposition and do not sincerely pose a threat to the neocon “clash of civilizations” agenda abroad and the orchestrated attack against the Bill of Rights at home. In fact, the only serious threat to the neocons and their neolib partners in crime emanates from the patriot and 9/11 truth movements—and that is why, as increasing numbers of patriotic and politically diverse Americans rally around the Ron Paul presidential campaign, we are witnessing increasingly virulent and desperate attacks against Paul, who is now absurdly conflated with “Islamo-fascist” terrorists. H.R. 1955 is scary because it does not target actual terrorists but rather “extremist belief systems” and “is not necessarily about violence” but rather the potential “use, planned use, or threatened use, of force or violence,” according to Alejandro Queral, executive director of the Northwest Constitutional Rights Center. “What is an extremist belief system? Who defines this? These are broad definitions that encompass so much…. It is criminalizing thought and ideology.” H.R. 1955 is a “form of prior restraint,” explains David Price, a professor of anthropology at St. Martin’s University who studies government surveillance and harassment of dissident scholars. It will prevent people from petitioning the government, lest they find themselves equated with terrorists. Kamau Franklin, an attorney with the Center for Constitutional Rights, is concerned the bill will be used to target peaceful protests. Franklin believes the “Commission’s broad mandate can lead to the ability to turn civil disobedience, a form of protest that is centuries old, into a terrorist act,” thus making it possible “that someone who would have been charged with disorderly conduct or obstruction of governmental administration may soon be charged with a federal terrorist statute…. My biggest fear is that they [the commission] will call for some new criminal penalties and federal crimes…. Activists are nervous about how the broad definitions could be used for criminalizing civil disobedience.” “There are all sorts of things that activists do that involve little or no risk of hurting people, but their actions get labeled as violent, or even worse, as acts of terrorism,” explains Bron Taylor, a professor at University of Florida. “For example, if 10 activists push themselves into a congressperson’s regional office, make noise, pull out files and make a scene, is that an act of terrorism? It is quite possible that the act could scare the hell out of the secretary and office workers because they don’t know these people or what they intend to do? But is that terrorism? Some people would like to frame it that way.” Indeed, no doubt “some people” would like to characterize We Are Change—infamous for confronting Giuliani, Romney, Biden, the neocon grand dragon Podhoretz and others—as a terrorist organization that needs to be arrested en masse and shipped to Camp Gitmo or one of those CIA torture dungeons in Poland or Jordan. “One of the most useful tools for political campaigns today is the use of the internet,” writes Anthony Merola. “Certainly we can see how this has been used over the last few months as Congressmen Paul, as well as other candidates, has used the internet to spread their messages and appeal to new voters, but don’t worry, HR 1955 has taken care of this,” as H.R. 1955 declares the “Internet has aided in facilitating ideologically-based violence and the homegrown terrorism process in the United States by providing access to broad and constant streams of terrorist-related propaganda to United States citizens.” With this piece of legislation in congress, my generation will no longer be able to use the internet in a peaceful manner. All activity will certainly be logged, and every letter typed will be scrutinized by the state. My generation has, without their knowing, been forced into a society in which we cannot choose, where we cannot think, where we cannot be free. This legislation is another step towards an Orwellian society that will create misery and despair for generations to come. We will be forced into more wars, more taxation, and more Statist welfare, and there is nothing we will be able to do to stop those in power. That is, unless we elect Congressman Paul. Ron Paul is the only person in our government advocating for personal liberty, and for privacy rights of the Citizens of this country. Sure, Barack Obama may appeal to the youth vote. But, he has made it clear that he is just another member of the Welfare/Warfare state. He has already told us that he cannot promise our troops will be home by the end of his first term. Style and Substance are two completely different things. Our rulers understand this as well as the youthful Anthony Merola—and that’s why they are pulling out all the stops to pass the “Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007.” If they are able to successfully characterize Ron Paul as a terrorist and thus sabotage his political campaign, there will be no end to the state-sponsored domestic terrorism they will unleash against the American people stripped of all advocates.

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