L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 177, June 10, 2002
Jackbooted Thug of the Month for June 2002:
Exclusive to TLE
Mr. Ashcroft won his position at the top of this month's JBT list through his diligent and ceaseless efforts to stifle freedom across America, and to make the people of America pay for the dubious privilege of being enslaved.
Mr. Ashcroft put on such a fine show of dancing in the blood of thousands killed on September 11, 2001, that Congress reward him with the long-sought Gestapo powers granted to the Justice Department through the ill-named USA PATRIOT Act, drafted in secret by Ashcroft's own goons. Frankly, it is difficult to find anything in the whole 342 pages of this Act which does not violate some element of the Constitution. (President Dubya also gets an honorary "Abe Lincoln award" for this.)
Since 9-11, Ashcroft has continued to act in the finest traditions of the secret police. He has arrested hundred's, perhaps thousands - since the arrests are classified we do not really know for sure - of people and held them incommunicado. The "detainees" are denied access to friends, family, and legal counsel. Ashcroft claims the right to indefinitely imprison these people, even when the Justice Department admits they are innocent of crimes, because they have not been charged with a crime. Orwell's Big Brother would be proud. Goerring is no doubt smiling with glee.
After the FBI's complete and total failure to notice that its own agents were reporting hard facts, and specific evidence of planned airliner attack on specific targets, Ashcroft has properly patted them on the back and expanded their powers to snoop on Americans and gather more evidence to be ignored.
And since the FBI was so gloriously incompetent in how they used their thousands of agents and billions of dollars of your money to entirely miss a terrorist attack they were told was coming, Ashcroft - with the help of Congress - is handing them billions more to waste, and authorizing the hire of hundreds more minions of stupidity.
Under Ashcroft's the Justice Department has announced its intention to continue violating Second Amendment rights which even it claims reside in individuals.
PATRIOT and CALEA wiretaps will be expanded without need of bothersome court orders.
FBI agents are authorized to conduct investigations of people without any evidence of a crime having been committed. (This one gets Mr. Ashcroft a "J. Edgar Hoover" addendum to his JBT award.)
More email snooping is to be implemented. A moot point, of course, since it turns out that Carnivore/DCS1000 was grabbing plenty of email that it was not supposed to get anyway.
Defendants can be held forever without trial, involuntarily drugged into complacency.
Defendants can be tried in secret, denied the chance to face and question their accusers.
Citizen's watch groups are being established to spy and inform on their neighbors. And the feds will continue to panic Americans into complacency with their chains by issuing vague warnings of nonexistent scuba diving terrorists.
Way to go, Johnny. Congratulations!
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