Tag Archives: Constitution

Conflicting Federal Laws beg to differ on Marijuana enforcement


It Is interesting to follow the news on Marijuana/Cannabis/Hemp these days.  It seems that the law enforcement agencies have a really hard time deciphering which laws they can enforce and which ones to “not” enforce.

The Federal Government has previously issued  “policy guidelines” to help “guide” the differing agencies through the process of elimination but they still seem to be confused.

To refresh their memory I am inserting the link to that information HERE. 

Prior to that the “Guidance Regarding Marijuana Enforcement” was issued on August 29, 2013 to help ease enforcement issues as well.  The link to that information is HERE as well.

It is documented fact that they did “raid” an Indian Reservation yesterday where the Federal Government seized 12,000 Marijuana Plants along with some Marijuana packaged for sale.

 

A surveillance photo taken June 19 from the northbound shoulder of Highway 395 in rural Modoc County shows part of a large marijuana manufacturing site on the XL Ranch, which is American Indian land belonging to the Pit River Tribe. The white pickup truck belongs to a private security firm contracted to guard the site.

“By Denny Walsh

dwalsh@sacbee.com

Law enforcement officers from at least four agencies on Wednesday swooped onto American Indian land occupied by two tribes in Modoc County and seized at least 12,000 marijuana plants and more than 100 pounds of processed marijuana.

In a release announcing the raids, Benjamin Wagner, the U.S. attorney in the Sacramento-based Eastern District of California – which includes Modoc County – emphasized, “Other than contraband marijuana and items of evidentiary value, no tribal property was seized and no federal charges are pending.”

Warrants signed Tuesday by U.S. Magistrate Judge Carolyn K. Delaney authorized federal agents to search “two large-scale marijuana cultivation facilities located on federally recognized tribal lands at the Alturas Indian Rancheria and the XL Ranch in Modoc County.” The county forms the northeast corner of California, with Oregon on the north and Nevada on the east.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article26834551.html#storylink=cpy  “

While surfing the WWW for further information about this the following article was found regarding enforcement of “Federal Law”.  Published April 2, 2015 in a Press Release by Drug Policy Alliance (DPA),

“Press Release | 04/02/2015

U.S. Justice Department Says It Will Ignore Federal Law and Prosecute People for Medical Marijuana Despite Congressional Spending Ban

Congress Passed One-Year Amendment in December Prohibiting Justice Department from Undermining State Medical Marijuana Laws; Members of both Parties Sought to Stop Prosecutions and Let States Set Their Own Medical Marijuana Policies

Drug Policy Alliance Calls on President Obama to Rein in Out-of-Control Prosecutors

A spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) told the Los Angeles Times that a bi-partisan amendment passed by Congress last year prohibiting DOJ from spending any money to undermine state medical marijuana laws doesn’t prevent it from prosecuting people for medical marijuana or seizing their property. The statement comes as the agency continues to target people who are complying with their state medical marijuana law. This insubordination is occurring despite the fact that members of Congress in both parties were clear that their intent with the amendment was to protect medical marijuana patients and providers from federal prosecution and forfeiture.

Read more here:  http://www.drugpolicy.org/news/2015/04/us-justice-department-says-it-will-ignore-federal-law-and-prosecute-people-medical-mari   ”

All of this only serves to prove the theory that the only way to “make marijuana lawful” for everyone to grow and consume is to fight for the REPEAL OF THE PROHIBITION LAWS which have enslaved us for so long.

Of note, I found this article: 

“PREEMPTION UNDER THE CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT  ROBERT A. MIKOS

States are conducting bold experiments with marijuana law. Since 1996,

eighteen states and the District of Columbia have legalized the drug for medical

purposes, and two of them have legalized it for recreational purposes as well.

1

These states have also promulgated a growing body of civil regulations to replace

prohibition. The regulations cover nearly every facet of the marijuana market.

Colorado, for example, has adopted more than s

eventy pages of regulations governing just the distribution of medical marijuana.”

The link to this journal article is HERE.

Moving right along, I am going to input an article written by JackieTreehorn on a Forum concerning repeal of the CSA because, well, I could not have written it better myself – so I am inserting his wisdom here:

Lawmakers, sign on now, to repeal the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (CSA). Without this authority, the ill-conceived War On Drugs (WOD) stops in its tracks. No one has talked about the War On Drugs for a long time. It has not gone away. We still squander scarce resources on the fight against ourselves, at a time when foreign enemies are at the gate. Enough is enough, too much is too much, and more of this futile war would be the height of fiscal irresponsibility. Do now, for the War On Drugs, what the 21st Amendment did for the 18th, and with it, alcohol prohibition. Stop throwing good money after bad.
We should have learned a lesson from alcohol prohibition, namely that it doesn’t work.

Isn’t there enough blood in the streets already, without continuing to shoot ourselves in the feet? Do we really need to ruin the lives of so many of our own children, perhaps on the theory it is for their own good?
The CSA is unconstitutional. The CSA never had a constitutional amendment to enable it, like the 18th amendment enabled alcohol prohibition. The drug warriors have, so far, gotten away with an end run, subverting the lack of constitutional authority.

An authority over Interstate Commerce provides a pretext of constitutionality. Any excuse is better than none. So, how is that interstate commerce going, these days? Why would a bankrupt treasury distain to derive revenue from its number one cash crop? The anti-capitalist policy inhibits small farmers from cultivating for a taxed market, and gifts a tax-free monopoly to outlaws, some of whom may be friends of our enemies. This is not what the founders had in mind when they authorized meddling in interstate commerce. Lets bring the underground economy into the taxed economy. The Supreme Court got it wrong in Gonzales V Raich. Good on Clarence Thomas for noticing that the so-called constitutionality of the law is a mockery.   www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/03-1454.ZD1.html

How did we get this CSA? Was there an informed debate on the floor? Did the substances ever get their day in court? What congressman then, or now, would admit to knowing a thing or two about LSD? The lawmakers have never wanted to know more than it is politically safe to be against it. Governments around the world ignore fact-checkers and even their own reports. Forgive them, Lord, they make it their business to know not what they do. Common sense tells us that personal experience deepens the understanding of issues. Personal experience is a good thing. But we herd the experienced to the hoosegow. We keep them out of jobs. The many who avoid detection must live double lives.

congressmen who passed the CSA probably don’t even get it that they deny freedom of religion to those who prefer a non-placebo as their sacrament of communion. Congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise of religious freedom, says the First Amendment. But they did.

Many of the prohibited substances provide access to unique mental states. You can’t say your piece, if you can’t think it up. You can’t think it up, if you are not in a receptive state of mind. Neither the Constitution, nor its amendments, enumerates a power of government to prevent access to specific states of mind. How and when did the government acquire this power, to restrict consciousness and thought? Congress shall make no law abridging freedom of speech, says the First Amendment. But they did.

What would happen if the CSA was enforced one hundred percent? What if all the civil disobedient turned in notarized confessions tomorrow? That is a double digit demographic. Even after years of spending more on prisons than on schools, the prisons don’t have that kind of sleeping capacity. Converting taxpayers into wards of the state mathematically increases the tax burden on the remainder. Higher tax burdens are not what the doctor is ordering at this time.

None of these substances are alleged to be as harmful as prison is. Granny’s justice is a saner benchmark. A kid caught with cigarettes must keep on smoking them, right then and there, until he or she has wretched. Drugs are sometimes accused of causing paranoia, but it is prohibition’s threat of loss of liberty, employment, and estate, that introduces paranoia. Apparently it is true that some of these substances do cause insanity, but the insanity is only in the minds of those who have never tried them. There shall not be cruel and unusual punishment, says the Eighth Amendment. But here it is, in the CSA.

In the 1630’s, the pilgrims wrote home glowingly that the native hemp was superior to European varieties. Now, the government pretends it has a right to prohibit farmers from the husbandry of native hemp, but it so doesn’t. Could an offender get a plea-bargain, by rolling over on someone higher up in the organization? The farmer does nothing to nature’s seed that God Himself does not do when He provides it rain, sunlight, and decomposing earth. How can it be a crime to do as God does? Is the instigator to get off scot-free, while small users are selectively prosecuted? God confesses, in Genesis 11-12, it was He who created the seed-bearing plants, on the second day. Then, He saw they were good. There you have it, the perpetrator shows no remorse about creating cannabis or mushrooms. Neither has He apologized for endowing humans with sensitive internal receptor sites which activate seductive mental effects in the presence of the scheduled molecules. Book Him, Dano.

Common Law must hold that humans are the legal owners of their own bodies. Men may dispose of their property as they please. It is none of Government’s business which substances its citizens prefer to stimulate themselves with. Men have a right to get drunk in their own homes, be it folly or otherwise. The usual caveats, against injury to others, or their estates, remain in effect.
The Declaration of Independence gets right to the point. The Pursuit Of Happiness is a self-evident, God-given, inalienable, right of man. The War On Drugs is, in reality, a war on the pursuit of happiness. Too bad the Declaration of Independence is not worth much in court.

Notwithstanding the failure of the Supreme Court to overturn the CSA, lawmakers can and should repeal the act. Lawmakers, please get to it now, in each house, without undue delay. Wake up.
Who has the guts to put America first and not prolong the tragedy?

We don’t need the CSA. The citizenry already has legal recourse for various injuries to itself and its estate, without invoking any War On Drugs. We should stop committing resources to ruin the lives of peaceful people who never injured anyone. If someone screws up at work, fire him or her for the screw-up. The Books still have plenty of laws on them, without this one.
Without the CSA, the empty prisons could conceivably be used to house the homeless. Homeland security might be able to use the choppers that won’t be needed for eradication. Maybe the negative numbers that will have to be used to bottom-line our legacy to the next generation can be less ginormous.

Cannabis has a stronger claim to the blessing of the state than do the sanctioned tobacco and alcohol. Cannabis does not have the deadly lung cancer of tobacco, nor the puking, hangover, and liver cirrhosis of alcohol. To the contrary, cannabis shows promise as an anti-tumor agent. Nor is cannabis associated with social problems like fighting and crashing cars. Cannabis-intoxication is usually too mellow for fighting, and impaired drivers typically drive within the limits of their impairment. The roads will be safer, if slower, for every driver that switches from drink to smoke. Coffee drinkers cause more serious accidents by zipping in and out of traffic and tailgating. To assure public safety on the road, cops need a kit to assess driving competence and alertness objectively. Perhaps science can develop a virtual reality simulator. Hopefully it could also detect drowsy, Alzheimer’s, and perhaps road-raging, drivers.

John McCain should recuse himself on the CSA repeal issue, due to the conflict of interest of potential competition for his family beer franchise. Both candidates have promised to end ‘failed programs’, but neither has issued a timetable, or a roadmap, for standing down on the WOD.

The debate how a crippled USA can manage ‘the two wars’ is blind. Hello, there are three, not two, wars. The War On Drugs has not let up, after 38 years of failure. Its costs are in the ballpark of the foreign wars. There is no lower-hanging, riper, or higher yielding budgetary fruit than to stop this third war, cold turkey. We are making new enemies faster than we are killing the old ones. We are losing old friends. In this national crisis of global humiliation, we should cut a little slack to those who still love the United States of America, no matter what they may be smoking. Stave off national meltdown, by repeal of the CSA, this week, if possible. TIA.

Without the War On Drugs, Americans can come together as a people in ways that are not possible with so many of our best and brightest under threat of disenfranchisement.”

The LINK to the above “Forum post” is HERE.

 

In conclusion I must reiterate what I have said before that if we want to end the war on drugs we must start by “repealing” the statutes which gave the Government and law enforcement agencies the power to enforce an unconstitutional statute to begin with.

http://www.justice.gov/iso/opa/resources/3052013829132756857467.pdf

http://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/tribal/pages/attachments/2014/12/11/policystatementregardingmarijuanaissuesinindiancountry2.pdf

http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article26834551.html

http://www.drugpolicy.org/news/2015/04/us-justice-department-says-it-will-ignore-federal-law-and-prosecute-people-medical-mari

http://digitalcommons.law.umaryland.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1287&context=jhclp

http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_1_5/773950_Call_for_Repeal_of_the_Controlled_Substances_Act_of_1970.html

45th Annual Smoke-In July 4, 2015 Washington, CO


Originally posted on Deadheads United™:

Marijuana Activist Call To Action

45th Anniversary Smoke-In

Saturday July 4th, 2015, Washington DC

“Smoke-in Alumni Reunite!”

 

“This demonstration, held on the day that commemorates 45 consecutive years of Smoke-In history in Washington DC, is an opportune moment to acknowledge the era of change created by Marijuana Activists across these United States of America.”

 

Smoke-In Alumni Call To Action

We are asking all Smoke-In Alumni to return to to Washington DC on Saturday July 4th, 2015 for the 45th Anniversary Smoke-In and join our demonstration at our Rally, the “Peace Mile March” and Concert in the contingent of the year they attended their first Smoke-In. This will be the best time during this current presidential administration to let your voice be heard in front of the White House and to be acknowledged as an American Veteran Marijuana Activist, and POW of THC!

 

During the 45 year history…

View original 252 more words

800 Years of the Magna Carta: Traditions Retained in the U.S. Constitution


800 years ago in the fields of Runnymede, the most important political covenant in the history of the western world was made. At sword point, King John was forced by his barons to sign a document that imposed limitations upon his power. Provided that the restrictions were properly enforced, no longer would the king be able to rule simply by royal prerogative.

Several calamities led to the schism between King John and the barons: prolonged wars, conscription mandates, unlegislated taxation, indefinite detention of political rivals, and a disagreement over the selection of England’s top church official.

The first struggle between the king and the barons was the result of harsh taxation – John imposed the western world’s first income tax at a rate of 1/13th and enforced the edict vigorously. For this reason, the Magna Carta importantly emphasizes that Parliament holds sole power over taxation. In England’s constitutional tradition, the idea that taxes cannot be levied without the consent of the people’s representatives became a cherished maxim.

This tradition was retained in the United States Constitution, as Congress is the only body that can lay and collect taxes. In contrast to John’s taxes, the document specified that only certain “activities” could be taxed rather than an individual’s income. Article I, Section 8 also places other limitations on taxes, such as the requirement that indirect taxes must remain at a uniform rate throughout the states. Upon its inception, the United States Constitution did not allow for an income tax.

A secondary act of duplicity resulted from John’s decision to intervene in the religious will of the people. This occurred as John attempted to choose a candidate as Archduke of Canterbury, the most powerful religious figure in the kingdom, against the will of the barons. Upon the death of Hubert Walter in 1205, John sought to elect John de Gray to the position, a bishop who acted as a close advisor to the king and benefactor of governmental power. Clashing with both the barons and the Catholic Church over the selection, John’s action resulted in an excommunication by the Pope and a rebuke by the barons.

The candidate favored and eventually consecrated by Innocent was a man named Stephen Langton, who received the support of the barons. Even though England’s state religion was Catholicism, John’s attempt to dictate the election was seen as non-warranted government interference with England’s religious institution.

Assuredly, the guarantee of free exercise of religion codified in the First Amendment of the United States Constitution was influenced by the will of the barons to obstruct and oppose John’s religious intervention. Moreover, this circumstance made the explicit rejection of state religion a favorable prospect.

During his reign, John made many indiscriminate strides to charge and jail political dissidents. In this society, there was no independent judiciary, the lone system of law being that of what was directed by the king’s discretion. The Magna Carta asserts: “No freeman is to be taken or imprisoned or disseised (robbed of property) of his free tenement or of his liberties or free customs, or outlawed or exiled or in any way ruined, nor will we go against such a man or send against him save by lawful judgement of his peers or by the law of the land. To no-one will we sell or deny of delay right or justice.” This text is sometimes called “Chapter 39,” and it established western civilization’s foundation for due process rights.

Today we recognize the affirmation of due process rights in the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution largely because of this passage. The Seventh Amendment is also influenced by this text – it necessitates a representative cross section of the community to serve as jurors in criminal cases where defendants are charged. Both of these boundaries serve as barriers against an arbitrary government that seeks to detain individuals indefinitely.

In the first years after it was sealed, the Magna Carta ultimately failed to accomplish what it was intended to do – impose limitations on King John’s rule. Instead, the king totally disregarded the confines intended by the document, and plunged England into a new war against the barons. Ultimately, he died while trying to cling to his authoritarian tendencies, stubbornly refusing to abide by the candid attempt to inhibit his power.

Since then, the Magna Carta’s importance has gradually increased because of its unique position in the history of liberty – the first example of forced restrictions against royal authority. The document’s worth was reinvigorated throughout much of the remainder of English history, especially as callous kings attempted to tread the same path as John. In the 17th century, Charles Stuart was beheaded and James II was forcibly removed from the throne. In both cases, transgressions against the Magna Carta were cited as justification.

The Magna Carta did not guarantee liberty to all free persons, but it did serve as a lasting forerunner to all constitutions since. I wrote in my book that the Magna Carta “represented the first clear denunciation of the idea that the king is entitled to govern by his own personal prerogative, and that the only limitations to his rule are those of his own choosing.”

The constraints the barons forced upon John, of course, are timeless. If there is one certainty related to humanity, it is the unchanging confirmation that there will always be petty tyrants like John who rule with an iron fist, using the same tricks to violate individual liberty. The text should stand today as a reminder that limited government is always superior to unlimited, arbitrary rule. The brilliance of the Magna Carta remains its applicability to all ages – there will always be a King John somewhere.

CONTINUE READING…

Know Your Constitution


 

 

When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these States. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.

Full Text of the Declaration of Independence

Note: The following text is a transcription of the first ten amendments to the Constitution in their original form. These amendments were ratified December 15, 1791, and form what is known as the “Bill of Rights.”

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment II

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Amendment III

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

Amendment VII

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Not Legal Advice

https://americansforcannabis.com/makeitlawful/know-your-constitution/

Land of the Unfree – Police and Prosecutors Fight Aggressively to Retain Barbaric Right of “Civil Asset Forfeiture”


Image result for infowars logo

 

Their effort, at least at the state level, appears to be working

 

Efforts to limit seizures of money, homes and other property from people who may never be convicted of a crime are stalling out amid a wave of pressure from prosecutors and police.

Their effort, at least at the state level, appears to be working. At least a dozen states considered bills restricting or even abolishing forfeiture that isn’t accompanied by a conviction or gives law enforcement less control over forfeited proceeds. But most measures failed to pass.

– From the Wall Street Journal article: Efforts to Curb Asset Seizures by Law Enforcement Hit Headwinds

In a nutshell, civil forfeiture is the practice of confiscating items from people, ranging from cash, cars, even homes based on no criminal conviction or charges, merely suspicion. This practice first became widespread for use against pirates, as a way to take possession of contraband goods despite the fact that the ships’ owners in many cases were located thousands of miles away and couldn’t easily be prosecuted. As is often the case, what starts out reasonable becomes a gigantic organized crime ring of criminality, particularly in a society where the rule of law no longer exists for the “elite,” yet anything goes when it comes to pillaging the average citizen.

One of the major reasons these programs have become so abused is that the police departments themselves are able to keep much of the confiscated money. So they actually have a perverse incentive to steal. As might be expected, a program that is often touted as being effective against going after major drug kingpins, actually targets the poor and disenfranchised more than anything else.

Civil asset forfeiture is state-sanctioned theft. There is no other way around it. The entire concept violates the spirit of the 4th, 5th and 6th amendments to the Constitution. In case you have any doubt:

The 4th Amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

The 5th Amendment: No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

The 6th Amendment: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

Civil asset forfeiture is a civil rights issue, and it should be seen as such by everyone. Just because it targets the entire population as opposed to a specific race, gender or sexual orientation doesn’t make it less important.

The problem with opposition in America today is that people aren’t seeing modern battle lines clearly. The greatest friction and abuse occurring in these United States today comes from the corporate-fascist state’s attack against average citizens. It doesn’t matter what color or gender you are. If you are weak, poor and vulnerable you are ripe for the picking. Until people see the battle lines clearly, it will be very difficult to achieve real change. Most people are divided and conquered along their superficial little tribal affiliations, and they completely miss the bigger picture to the peril of society. Which is why women will support Hillary just because she’s a woman, not caring in the least that she is a compromised, corrupt oligarch stooge.

In case you have any doubt about how little your opinion matters when it comes to the rights of police to rob you blind, read the following excerpts from the Wall Street Journal:

Efforts to limit seizures of money, homes and other property from people who may never be convicted of a crime are stalling out amid a wave of pressure from prosecutors and police.

Read that sentence over and over again until you get it. This is a free country?

Critics have taken aim at the confiscatory powers over concerns that authorities have too much latitude and often too strong a financial incentive when deciding whether to seize property suspected of being tied to criminal activity.

But after New Mexico passed a law this spring hailed by civil-liberties groups as a breakthrough in their effort to rein in states’ forfeiture programs, prosecutor and police associations stepped up their own lobbying campaign, warning legislators that passing such laws would deprive them of a potent crime-fighting tool and rip a hole in law-enforcement budgets.

Their effort, at least at the state level, appears to be working. At least a dozen states considered bills restricting or even abolishing forfeiture that isn’t accompanied by a conviction or gives law enforcement less control over forfeited proceeds. But most measures failed to pass.

“What happened in those states is a testament to the power of the law-enforcement lobby,” said Scott Bullock, a senior attorney at the Institute for Justice, a libertarian-leaning advocacy group that has led a push for laws giving property owners more protections.

It seems the only people in America without a powerful lobby group are actual American citizens. See: Charting the American Oligarchy – How 0.01% of the Population Contributes 42% of All Campaign Cash

Prosecutors say forfeiture laws help ensure that drug traffickers, white-collar thieves and other wrongdoers can’t enjoy the fruits of their misdeeds and help curb crime by depriving criminals of the “tools” of their trade. Under federal law and in many states, a conviction isn’t required.

“White-collar thieves,” they say. Yet I haven’t seen a single bank executive’s assets confiscated. Rather, they received taxpayer bailout funds with which to pay themselves record bonuses after wrecking the global economy. Don’t forget:

The U.S. Department of Justice Handles Banker Criminals Like Juvenile Offenders…Literally

In Texas, lawmakers introduced more than a dozen bills addressing forfeiture during this year’s legislative session, which ended Monday. Some would either force the government to meet a higher burden of proof or subject forfeiture programs to more stringent financial disclosure rules and audits.

But only one bill, which law-enforcement officials didn’t object to, ultimately passed. It requires the state attorney general to publish an annual report of forfeited funds based on data submitted by local authorities. That information, at the moment, is only accessible through freedom-of-information requests.

This is what a corporate-statist oligarchy looks like.

Shannon Edmonds, a lobbyist for the Texas District and County Attorneys Association, said local enforcement officers and prosecutors “educated their legislators about how asset forfeiture really works in Texas.”

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan last month vetoed a bill that would, among other things, prohibit the state from turning over seized property to the federal government unless the owner has been charged with a federal crime or gives consent.

Remember, the terrorists hate us for our freedom.

Prosecutors said the Tenaha episode was an isolated breakdown in the system. “Everybody knows there are bad eggs out there,” Karen Morris, who supervises the Harris County district attorney’s forfeiture unit, told Texas lawmakers at a hearing this spring. “But we don’t stop prosecuting people for murder just because some district attorneys have made mistakes.”

When police aren’t out there stealing your hard earned assets without a trial or charges, they can often be found pounding on citizens for kicks. I came across the following three headlines this morning alone as I was the scanning news.

Cop Exonerated After Being Caught on Video Brutally Beating A Tourist Who Asked For A Tampon

Kids in Police-Run Youth Camp Allegedly Beaten, Threatened By Cops

Florida Cop Charged With On-Duty Child Abuse; Suspended With Pay

This is not what freedom looks like.

For related articles, see:

The DEA Strikes Again – Agents Seize Man’s Life Savings Under Civil Asset Forfeiture Without Charges

Asset Forfeiture – How Cops Continue to Steal Americans’ Hard Earned Cash with Zero Repercussions

Quote of the Day – An Incredible Statement from the City Attorney of Las Cruces, New Mexico

“Common People Do Not Carry This Much U.S. Currency…” – This is How Police Justify Stealing American Citizens’ Money

CONTINUE TO "INFOWARS"….

Vermont Bill would Legalize Marijuana, Effectively Nullify Federal Prohibition


A bill introduced in Vermont would authorize marijuana to be taxed and regulated similar to alcohol, legalizing the plant, and effectively nullifying the federal prohibition on the same.

Senate Bill 95 (S.95) was introduced on Feb. 18 by State Sen. David Zuckerman (D-Chittenden). If this bill is successful, Vermont would become the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational purposes through the legislature rather than the popular vote.

SB95 would allow “a person who is 21 years of age or older to possess limited amounts of marijuana for personal use, while retaining civil and criminal penalties for possession above the limits and for unauthorized dispensing or sale of marijuana” and would create “civil penalties for a person who is under 21 years of age who possesses marijuana or attempts to procure marijuana from a registered marijuana establishment.”

Under the bill, Vermont residents would be authorized to possess “two mature marijuana plants; seven immature marijuana plants; one ounce of marijuana; and any additional marijuana produced by the person’s marijuana plants, provided that any amount of marijuana in excess of one ounce of marijuana must be possessed in the same secure indoor facility where the plants were cultivated.” Nonresidents would be allowed to possess a quarter ounce of marijuana.

Dispensaries and retail marijuana shops would be allowed under SB95 if they pay the necessary fees and follow appropriate licensing procedures outlined in the bill. Marijuana distribution centers must be 1000 feet from schools and child-care facilities. Marijuana possession and distribution conducted in ways not authorized by SB95 would be punishable by a civil infraction, and then possibly jail time.

Bills like SB95 are sweeping the nation, and for good reason. Reforms like these can affect federal policy while circumventing the Washington D.C. power structure completely. The best thing about measures such as SB95 is that they are completely lawful and Constitutional, and there is little if anything the feds can do to stop them!

CONSTITUTIONALITY

Congress and the president claim the constitutional authority to ban marijuana. The Supreme Court concurs. However, nearly two-dozen states have taken steps to put the well-being of their citizens above the so-called federal supremacy by legalizing marijuana to varying degrees anyway.

“The rapidly growing and wildly successful state-level movement to legalize marijuana, either completely, or for medical use, proves that states can successfully effectively reject unconstitutional federal acts. The feds can claim the authority to prohibit pot all they want, but it clearly has done nothing to deter states from moving forward with plans to allow it, pushed by the will of the people,” Tenth Amendment Center executive director Michael Boldin said.

The momentum is on our side, but Vermont cannot legalize it without your help. This effort needs your support to achieve victory. SB95 is currently in Senate Committee on Judiciary where it will need to successfully pass through before it can receive a full vote in the state senate.

ACTION ITEMS

If you live in Vermont, support this bill by following all the action steps at THIS LINK.

All Other States, take action to push back against the federal drug war at this link.

CONTINUE READING…

Merry Christmas! Peace on Earth! Good Will to Men! Hark the Herald Angels sing…Glory to the newborn KING!


10422303_10204566030543809_6922866691960141318_n

Let’s talk about DOJ enforcement of marijuana laws…(on Tribal Lands)


In reference to the last post regarding the enforcement of marijuana laws on tribal lands:

Justice Department on Thursday will tell U.S. attorneys to not prevent tribes from growing or selling marijuana on the sovereign lands

Today, via this link, the Department of Justice, as reported by the LA Times has/will produce a “Memorandum” concerning the enforcement of marijuana laws on Tribal Lands which seems to say that they will not bother prosecuting Federal laws on marijuana anymore.

The Justice Department will generally not try to enforce federal marijuana laws on Native American reservations.

“The new guidance, released in a memorandum, will be implemented on a case-by-case basis and tribes must still follow federal guidelines, said Timothy Purdon, the U.S. attorney for North Dakota and the chairman of the Attorney General’s Subcommittee on Native American Issues.”

The policy comes on the heels of the 2013 Justice Department decision to stop most federal marijuana prosecutions in states that have legalized the possession or sale of pot.

I would caution everyone to be very slow to rush in and shout a victory has been won.

The Federal Government has a way of making you think you have won freedoms which in effect you have not as the regulations surrounding that freedom end up making you into a criminal over and over again. Kind of like the CBD bill in Kentucky which it turns out you can buy CBD (with no THC) online all day long and it is legal without a prescription!  So why did we fight for the CBD bill?  So that the Physicians, Pharmas, and other corporate and government entities can make money on the bandwagon to “legalize” on the backs of all of us.

This MEMORANDUM which personally I have not seen published yet, should be studied closely as to what it actually MEANS, not just what it seems to say.

First of all a memorandum from the Department of Justice does not mean they have REPEALED the statutes in existence at the federal level regarding marijuana.  They can and likely will continue to interfere with marijuana production and sales.

This has been proven over and over again in all “legalized” or “medical” states that the Feds can and do still come in to support the “regulating” of the marijuana statutes.

As well, the U.N. has NOT at this point “repealed” any treaty regarding the use of marijuana in any form.  They have “talked about” changing the way that the “drug problem” is handled.  That being said, marijuana is still illegal. See these links:

U.S. states’ pot legalization not in line with international law: U.N. agency

More Police or More Doctors? How to Best Tackle Illicit Drugs: November 6, 2014

So while the Reservations get ready for their “grand openings” at the cannabis casino that they have most likely already planned for, I hope that they realize that once again they may be giving away their sovereign rights via pending “legalization”…

It’s all in the semantics…

Read between the lines first…

smk

we petition the obama administration to: Issue a specific statement regarding preservation of Sovereignty and The Constitution from outside influence


Hierarchy of Law

http://usann.us/images/bg_mqyy.jpg

December 16, 2013

We begin yet again: a new 30-day window for signature gathering for our petition to protect our Sovereignty and our Constitution.

We require a specific statement from The White House regarding what efforts The White House will take & when, in support of a proposal for a Constitutional Amendment [called "Hierarchy of Law" at http://www.usann.us/Hierarchy_of_Law.html & further explained on that site], to preserve Sovereignty, and The Constitution as the guiding Law of the Land, & by ensuring a specific clarification of a hierarchy within the structures provided within & under that Constitution; or, a statement of why such support is not & will not be provided.

The proposal is largely designed to keep UN & similar attempts against US sovereignty, as regarding arms and the Law of the Sea Treaty, from ever allowing the UN or others to dictate to the US, while still allowing the US to adopt positions in line with such.

This petition is hosted on a White House site, https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/issue-specific-statement-regarding-preservation-sovereignty-and-constitution-outside-influence/TPXj9X26 [or http://wh.gov/l8XXM] which does require a name and an email address to “open an account”, which takes just a couple of minutes; it also hosts a lot of other petitions, accessible through the same account. It might be worth checking out even if you don’t like ours.

While we think this is clear enough for just about anybody to sign without even having to read the material referenced, we invite you to do the reading. We are pretty sure any examination of the material will only further encourage folk to sign. We hope it will also encourage people to recommend to virtually everybody they know, to sign also.

While we hold The Constitution in great esteem here, considering it something of a holy document [the house Barbarian calls it one part of his Holy Trinity], we do not see it as the beginning and ending of all things Great and Good.  Neither did those who wrote it, evidenced by one of the most miraculous features of the document: the provision(s) for amending it.
We do not consider proposing Amendment lightly for a number of reasons.  We do not think that all situations necessarily call for a change to The Constitution, in part because we think most answers are already there.  We also are not at all sure that we are somehow blessed with a special combination of skills and talents uniquely and adequately suited to the task, and we certainly claim no exclusivity in such if we are found to be reasonably suited in this instance.
Still, the ravages of 200 years of neglect in some quarters, and the creativity of some of those less-enlightened than The Founders, has brought on situations that do indeed call for changes  — and in some cases, changes to changes [like rescinding the 17th Amendment, thereby returning election of Senators to the State legislatures].  We believe that the most appropriate means by which to address this problem — and it is a problem — is, unfortunately, by Constitutional Amendment.
What follows is adapted from a more extensive work in progress [the proposal being only one of a series which are intended and structured to work together, though each is also constructed to work as an independent piece: another is "Fiscal Responsibility", for which we’ve set up a separate petition and ask assistance there as well], which we hope will explain the rather strong copyright restriction.

Loss of Sovereignty

Loss of sovereignty has been seen here for a long time.  We have watched for years as Congress made itself less and less relevant, and as the Administration and even the Judiciary sought more and more accord with international entities than with the people of the country.   Consider the array of U.N. Treaties and accords [by whatever name known] on the environment, childrens’ rights, Agenda 21, and firearms, just for openers.  Obama and his Secretary of State and others have been heading that way since coming to Power, in a number of ways and on a number of fronts; they are not the first, but they’ve been going at it with unprecedented vigor and thoroughness.

We at this site believe that the country is on the brink, not just financially, and not just on sovereignty, and not just on those two items: we are in big trouble in too many ways to address in what might be seen as "a sound bite" or a blog entry.

But the threat to Sovereignty demands, as we see it, immediate response, and if it costs us potential future earnings, well, at least we might still live, and in a country where earnings are at least a potential.  We also have seen the threat to Sovereignty as being way beyond war-making powers, which is what has brought this to a head, and we have devised our REMEDY to address Sovereignty specifically, rather than any form an attack on it might take.  We think readers will find it covers "a multitude of sins".

PLEASE CONTINUE READING THIS INFORMATION THRU THIS LINK.  IT IS OF UTMOST IMPORTANCE FOR EVERYONE TO HAVE THIS INFORMATION – EVEN IF THEY DO NO AGREE WITH IT.

Obama’s Memo on Killing Americans Twists ‘Imminent Threat’ Like Bush


Justice Department Memo on Legal Case for Drone Strikes on Americans

 

The confidential document provides the most thorough account yet of why the president thinks extrajudicial drone strikes on citizens are okay.

If you’ve gone ahead and read it, you know the basics. As Charlie Savage and Scott Shane explain, Obama Administration lawyers say killing an American would be lawful if an “informed, high-level official” determined three things:

  1. That the target is a ranking Al-Qaeda figure.
  2. That he or she poses “an imminent threat of violent attack” against America.
  3. That capture is not “feasible.”

That raises a lot of questions. What threshold of evidence, if any, must a high-ranking official meet to determine that someone is Al Qaeda? The burden is apparently less onerous than two witnesses testifying in open court, which the Constitution requires for a treason conviction. But the memo specifies neither an evidential threshold nor a protocol for meeting it. That is troubling.

PLEASE CONTINUE READING THRU LINKS.  THE TOP LINK IS THE DOC ITSELF….

THE LINK BELOW IS TO A COLUMBIA LAW  STUDY ON DRONES AND ITS IMPACT ON CIVILIANS.

http://web.law.columbia.edu/sites/default/files/microsites/human-rights-institute/files/The%20Civilian%20Impact%20of%20Drones.pdf

Meet us at the Capital Hill Annex building and show your support for SB 11


 

Kentuckians for Medicinal Marijuana

Kentuckians for Medicinal Marijuana

By Kentuckians for Medicinal Marijuana

Wednesday, February 6, 20131:00pm

The Capitol Annex Building 700 Capitol Ave Loop, Frankfort, KY, 40601

Support the cause, the senators need to feel and hear your voice. Meet us at the Capital Hill Annex building and show your support for SB 11 (Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Bill). Chronically ill Kentucky citizens that have been debilitated by disease need your support. Please help our cause by coming out to the rally. You can also further support our cause by making an appointment to see your senator the same day. We can’t do it without you.

UNITED WE STAND DIVIDED WE FALL!    

We can make this happen!  

 

Kentucky Veterans for Medical Marijuana  

www.kentuckyveteransformedicalmarijuana.net 

Effort to legalize hemp gains new life in Kentucky


 

3 types cannabis

 

Gregory A. Hall, The (Louisville, Ky.) Courier-Journal

FRANKFORT, Ky. — With support from some of the state’s top politicians and claims that it would create thousands of jobs, an effort to legalize industrial hemp — the less-potent cousin of marijuana — may have its best chance of passing the Kentucky General Assembly.

Opposition from the Kentucky State Police helped kill earlier efforts to legalize hemp, which can be processed into fiber for clothing or provide an oil used in skin- and hair-care products. Once legal, hemp production in the United States was centered in Kentucky. Production fell nationally after the mid-1800s, as cotton surged.

State police still oppose legalizing hemp, arguing in part that because the plants look virtually the same as marijuana it could impede drug enforcement efforts.

But the proposal to legalize hemp has gained momentum from the alliance of Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer, state Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Paul Hornback, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul and the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.

“This is something that you don’t have to borrow any money (for) that will have an immediate impact of thousands of jobs,” Comer said, based on an assumption that processors and manufacturers would locate in Kentucky if it is one of the first states to approve it. “We’re ahead at something that relates to economic development for once, so let’s pursue it.”

Comer and Paul say the state police concerns are unfounded because growers of industrial hemp would be licensed and global-positioning system devices would identify legal crops and reveal others as illegal.

Comer’s Senate Bill 50, sponsored by Hornback, a Republican from Shelbyville, was filed earlier this month just before the legislature adjourned until February.

The bill would require growers to be licensed annually and have their backgrounds checked by the Agriculture Department. Each licensee would be required to plant a minimum of 10 acres to eliminate people who aren’t serious from getting licenses.

Growers would have to keep sales contracts for three years and provide names of hemp buyers to the department.

Hemp seeds produce plants with less than 1 percent THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, which has between 3 percent and 15 percent THC.

Comer said he believes there are 22 votes in the 38-member Senate in favor of the bill. But if it isn’t assigned to Hornback’s committee by Senate President Robert Stivers and other Senate leaders, it may never get to the floor.

“I’m afraid I see problems in the Senate,” Comer said.

Stivers, a Republican from Manchester, said some members are uncomfortable with the bill.

If the measure passes the Senate, it likely will face an even tougher battle in the House, where Agriculture Committee Chairman Tom McKee, a Democrat from Cynthiana, has blocked similar bills from getting a vote in the past

McKee has said the state police concerns resonate with him.

“I think we have some questions to answer, but I certainly don’t want to close any opportunity for viable agriculture,” McKee said earlier this month.

Gov. Steve Beshear said on a Lexington radio call-in show recently that his “only hesitation” is law enforcement concerns.

Even if an industrial hemp bill passed in Kentucky, it would still need federal approval. Federal drug policy effectively bans growing it, although other countries, such as Canada, allow it.

Paul, a Bowling Green Republican, has supported federal legislation to enable hemp production by classifying it separately from marijuana. Paul and Comer appeared together at the Kentucky State Fair last year to talk about their support for industrial hemp.

If legalized, Comer said he doesn’t see corn and soybean growers in Western Kentucky switching to industrial hemp, but he said it would be a profitable alternative for growers in hillier areas whose land is now used for grazing and pasture.

CONTINUE READING…

Forget the “Unbridled Spirit”….


KentuckyForKentucky.Com
KentuckyForKentucky.Com

NCADP Online Conference Video


NCADP Online Conference Video

 

The National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty is excited to present this live online conference exploring how communities can be safer without the death penalty. The conference will be broadcast over the web and will be approximately one hour in length. View the conference right here, on this page!

This will be a video conference with presenters live in California, Maryland and Massachusetts. We need your help to advertise this event.

Join us for a fascinating discussion addressing the question, “does the death penalty actually keep us safer?” with Charles Ogletree, Harvard University and founder of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice, Ron McAndrew, former warden of Florida State Prison who conducted that state’s final electrocutions, Kirk Bloodsworth, the first person exonerated from death row using DNA evidence, and Jerry Givens, former corrections officer from Virginia who put 62 men to death during his 17 years as an executioner.

Send us your questions in advance by tweeting them to #abolition2012.

THE VIDEO IS AVAILABLE TO VIEW AT THIS LINK….

 

States Legalizing Marijuana Will Violate Federal Law, Trigger Constitutional Showdown: DEA, Drug Czars


The Huffington Post | By Matt Ferner Posted: 10/15/2012 3:13 pm EDT

 

On a Monday teleconference call, former Drug Enforcement Agency administrators and directors of the Office of National Drug Control Policy voiced a strong reminder to the U.S. Department of Justice that even if voters in Colorado, Oregon and Washington pass ballot measures to legalize marijuana use for adults and tax its sale, the legalization of marijuana still violates federal law and the passage of these measures could trigger a "Constitutional showdown."

The goal of the call was clearly to put more pressure on Attorney General Eric Holder to make a public statement in opposition to these measures. With less than 30 days before Election Day, the DOJ has yet to announce its enforcement intentions regarding the ballot measures that, if passed, could end marijuana prohibition in each state.

"Next month in Colorado, Oregon and Washington states, voters will vote on legalizing marijuana," Peter Bensinger, the moderator of the call and former administrator of the DEA during President Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan administrations, began the call. "Federal law, the U.S. Constitution and Supreme Court decisions say that this cannot be done because federal law preempts state law."

Bensinger added: "And there is a bigger danger that touches every one of us — legalizing marijuana threatens public health and safety. In states that have legalized medical marijuana, drug driving arrests, accidents, and drug overdose deaths have skyrocketed. Drug treatment admissions are up and the number of teens using this gateway drug is up dramatically."

Bensinger was joined by a host of speakers including Bill Bennet and John Walters, former directors of the While House Office of National Drug Control Policy; Chief Richard Beary of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP); Dr. Robert L. DuPont, founding director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and who was also representing the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and several others.

In response to the drug warriors calling out Holder again to take a strong public stance against these marijuana legalization measures, Mason Tvert, co-director of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, the group behind Colorado’s Amendment 64 said to The Huffington Post:

We believe anything claimed by participants on the call today needs to be taken with many grains of salt. These people have made a living off marijuana prohibition and the laws that keep this relatively benign substance illegal. The nation wastes billions of taxpayer dollars annually on the failed policy of marijuana prohibition and people like Bill Bennett and John Walters are among the biggest cheerleaders for wasting billions more. The call today should be taken as seriously as an event by former coal industry CEOs opposing legislation curtailing greenhouse gas emissions. They are stuck in a certain mindset and no level of evidence demonstrating the weakness of their position will change their views.

This is an election about Colorado law and whether the people of Colorado believe that we should continue wasting law enforcement resources to maintain the failed policy of marijuana prohibition. Our nation was founded upon the idea that states would be free to determine their own policies on matters not delegated to the federal government. The Controlled Substance Act itself acknowledges that Congress never intended to have the federal government fully ‘occupy the field’ of marijuana policy. We hope the Obama administration respects these state-based policy debates. If Amendment 64 is adopted by the people of Colorado, there will be sufficient time before any new businesses are established for state and federal officials to discuss the implications.

Today’s call elaborated on a September letter that nine former DEA heads sent to Holder strongly urging him to oppose Amendment 64 in Colorado, Initiative 502 in Washington and Measure 80 in Oregon. "To continue to remain silent conveys to the American public and the global community a tacit acceptance of these dangerous initiatives," the nine said in the letter to holder obtained by Reuters.

A month before the 2010 election in California, Holder vowed to "vigorously enforce" federal marijuana laws and warned that the government would not look the other way and allow a state marijuana market to emerge. California’s Proposition 19 was narrowly defeated in 2010 and the pressure is on Holder again to voice opposition to these 2012 measures.

When pressed by a reporter during a Q & A following the call if the group was at all surprised that Holder had not yet made a statement about the measures, former drug czar John Walters replied, "I think it’s shocking. All you have to do is say things that this administration has already said. It would help enormously and I think it would defeat these measures."

Both Colorado and Washington’s pot ballot measures are quite popular with voters, according to recent polling and have been backed by an increasingly diverse group across a range of ideological perspectives.

In Colorado, if marijuana is legalized it would be taxed and regulated similar to alcohol and tobacco. It would give state and local governments the ability to control and tax the sale of small amounts of marijuana to adults age 21 and older. According to the Associated Press, analysts project that that tax revenue could generate somewhere between $5 million and $22 million a year in the state. An economist whose study was funded by a pro-pot group projects as much as a $60 million boost by 2017.

CONTINUE READING……(VIDEO)

Judge Scalia On How “Easy” It Is to Deny You Your Rights


 

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has again treated us to his “textualist” reading of the Constitution, telling an American Enterprise Institute audience that unfettered abortion access, “homosexual sodomy” and the retiring of the death penalty are all “easy” to decide against.

Reports Seattle Pi:

“The death penalty? It’s easy. Give me a break. It’s easy. Abortion? Absolutely easy,” Scalia told the AEI faithful.

[…]

“Nobody ever thought the Constitution prevented restrictions on abortion,” Scalia added. “Homosexual sodomy? Come on. For 200 years, it was criminal in every state.”

Scalia’s mantra is that the Constitution is not to be treated as a living, breathing document whose promise of Liberty evolves with its people, but rather an iron-clad relic that should be read as it was set down, and in only that way.

This illuminating talk from Scalia comes as several marriage equality cases stand ready to be taken up by the Supreme Court, a number that will directly challenge the federal law that bans the government from recognizing same-sex marriages, the Defense of Marriage Act.

Another case on the Supreme Court’s docket in the coming months, likely after the November elections it would now seem, will be the Proposition 8 case where a federal judge and the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decided that the voting majority of California violated state and federal guarantees of equal protection in 2008 by defining away the right to marry a same-sex partner.

Scalia, a Reagan appointee, has sat on the bench for much of the life of the gay rights struggle. He has consistently found cause to rule against gay rights. Most notably, Scalia dissented in Lawrence v. Texas, the case that would serve to eventually make unenforceable state level bans on sodomy.

In the dissent Scalia, while terming the sodomy ban “facially neutral” even though the Texas ban applied solely to homosexual acts, wrote:

Today’s opinion is the product of a Court, which is the product of a law-profession culture, that has largely signed on to the so-called homosexual agenda, by which I mean the agenda promoted by some homosexual activists directed at eliminating the moral opprobrium that has traditionally attached to homosexual conduct…. [T]he Court has taken sides in the culture war, departing from its role of assuring, as neutral observer, that the democratic rules of engagement are observed.

While this may give us a rather face-slapping clue as to Scalia’s overall opinion of gay rights, the case may be of particular interest in that, with his dissent, Scalia found room to criticize the Court’s majority for its concern over the criminalization of sodomy leading to discrimination, citing that this ignored the will of the people:

So imbued is the Court with the law profession’s anti-anti-homosexual culture, that it is seemingly unaware that the attitudes of that culture are not obviously “mainstream”; that in most States what the Court calls “discrimination” against those who engage in homosexual acts is perfectly legal.

Proposition 8′s defenders have harped, seemingly to play a tune to which a conservative judiciary might hum, that the voting people of California, through the democratic process, decided against gay marriage and therefore the will of the people should stand — this of course sidesteps the fact that minority rights will nearly always and by their nature find disfavor at a majority poll.

While Scalia’s approach to law, his “textualist” attitude, seems to give him easy answers on topics like abortion restriction and, to quote again “homosexual sodomy,” one can’t help but feel that a judge who knows how he will rule before he has heard the individual cases at hand might be going in with a level of bias that is, to say the least, concerning.

However, for those of us familiar with Scalia’s views on a variety of topics, none perhaps more eyebrow-raising than his refrain that sex discrimination is Constitutionally sound, Scalia’s latest volley against reason and equality, and his apparent admission that being a Supreme Court justice is “easy” when it comes to issues like these, will not be a surprise.

Equal rights proponents were never looking to Scalia for affirmation, but then Scalia’s celebrity has already been cemented among religious conservatives, legislators like Scott Brown, and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney who has said he would be looking to appoint similarly minded judges.

Scalia’s latest AEI talk serves, then, as a healthy reminder of what that would mean for America.

Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/judge-scalia-on-how-easy-it-is-to-deny-you-your-rights.html#ixzz291bcIFf0

Women and the War on Drugs Fact Sheet


The “War on Drugs” is a War on Women Women are the fastest-growing population within the prison industrial complex Between 1986 and 1999, the incarceration rate for women in prison for drug offenses grew by 888%. From 1986 (the year mandatory minimum sentencing was enacted) to 1996, the number of women in federal prison for drug crimes increased from 2,400 to 24,000. This unprecedented rise is a direct result of the “war on drugs,” which has been the main factor in the overall increase in the imprisonment of women. Since 1986, the overall number of women in prison increased by 400%. For women of color, the rise is 800%.
The “war on drugs” replaced judicial discretion in sentencing with harsh mandatory minimums and over-policing in poor, predominantly African-American and Hispanic neighborhoods. Policing that targets inner-city neighborhoods as the primary method for addressing the drug problem generates arrests of drug users and small-time dealers, filling the prisons, but does very little to curb the drug trade. In the 1980’s, amid the media frenzy over the “crack epidemic,” women, especially pregnant women and women of color, became the target of punitive law enforcement efforts. Unsupported and misleading information on the consequences of prenatal exposure to cocaine received widespread media coverage and lawmakers began introducing legislative proposals addressing the subject. Since then, eighteen states have amended their civil child welfare laws to specifically address the subject of a woman’s drug use during pregnancy, ranging from an evaluation of parenting ability to the basis for presuming neglect and terminating parental rights and referral to child welfare authorities to prosecution. In some states, including South Carolina, New Mexico, Arizona, Alabama, Colorado, Georgia, Missouri, North Dakota and New Hampshire, pregnant women found to be using illicit drugs have been prosecuted as child abusers and sentenced to
up to ten years in jail. In several cases, drug addicts who have given birth to stillborn babies and submitted to a drug test with positive results have been prosecuted for murder. No one wants pregnant women to use drugs, but treating it as a punishable offense will only deter pregnant addicts from seeking pre-natal care or addiction treatment. Women of color, in particular, have been targeted for punishment, as these policies are enforced in a blatantly racist manner. In Charleston, South Carolina, for example, a 2001 study concluded that the local public hospital selectively drug tested pregnant women who met the hospital’s criteria to have drug abuse problems, reported positive tests to the police, and had the women arrested (often within minutes of giving birth)and delivered to jail. 29 of the 30 women prosecuted under this policy were black. Women are the least violent segment of the prison population- roughly 85% of women in prison are serving time for nonviolent offenses. The U.S. Government’s response to the global drug trade has been an increase of interdiction efforts and greater presence of border patrol. As a result, drug traffickers have become more calculating in their methods of trafficking. The individuals least likely to be suspected of trafficking are women, particularly women with small children. Although many women are involved in trafficking for the same reasons as their male counterparts, other women are involved because they are unable to find legal or sustainable means to support their families, or are coerced into transporting drugs under threat of violence or death. These women are subject to criminal sanctions that far outweigh their roles in drug trafficking. Many have no previous criminal record. Because the “war on drugs” is fought on low-level drug dealers and drug users instead of the cartels that control the drug trade, women often serve harsher sentences for drug offenses because they cannot provide prosecutors with information to trade for reduced sentencing. Since women, as drug couriers, are often the “mules” in the hierarchal drug trade, they rarely possess information that allows them to benefit from reducing sentencing provisions. Drug addiction must be treated as a health issue, not a legal problem. Many of the women in prison for drug offenses will never recover. They will not have the means to seek treatment for their addictions, recover their children from the state’s custody, or support themselves financially. Their chances of overdose, disease, and homelessness will dramatically increase.

Women and the War on Drugs Fact Sheet.pdfDownload ·

Medical Marijuana Patients Get Their Day in Federal Court with the Obama Administration


D.C. Circuit to hear oral arguments this October in lawsuit challenging marijuana’s federal classification

Americans for Safe Access - Advancing Legal Medical Marijuana Therapeutics and Research

 

Washington, D.C. — Late last week, the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit agreed to hear oral arguments in Americans for Safe Access v. Drug Enforcement Administration, a lawsuit challenging the federal government’s classification of marijuana as a dangerous drug with no medical value. Ten years after the Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis (CRC) filed its petition, the courts will finally review the scientific evidence regarding the therapeutic value of marijuana. The D.C. Circuit is scheduled to hear oral arguments on October 16th at 9:30am.

“Medical marijuana patients are finally getting their day in court,” said Joe Elford, Chief Counsel with Americans for Safe Access, the country’s leading medical marijuana advocacy group. “This is a rare opportunity for patients to confront politically motivated decision-making with scientific evidence of marijuana’s medical efficacy,” continued Elford. “What’s at stake in this case is nothing less than our country’s scientific integrity and the imminent needs of millions of patients.”

ASA filed its lawsuit in January, challenging the July 2011 Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) denial of the CRC petition, which was filed in 2002. The DEA is the final arbiter on petitions to reclassify controlled substances, but other agencies are also involved in the review process. Patient advocates claim that marijuana is treated unlike any other controlled substance in that rescheduling petitions are encumbered by politics and therapeutic research is subjected to a unique and overly rigorous approval process.

The announcement of oral arguments comes just weeks after a study was published in The Open Neurology Journal by Dr. Igor Grant one of the leading U.S. medical marijuana researchers, claiming that marijuana’s Schedule I classification is “not tenable.” Dr. Grant and his fellow researchers concluded it was “not accurate that cannabis has no medical value, or that information on safety is lacking.” The study urged additional research, and stated that marijuana’s federal classification and its political controversy are “obstacles to medical progress in this area.” Marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I substance (along with heroin) is based on the federal government’s position that it has “no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.”

For more than a year, the Obama Justice Department has been escalating its attacks in medical marijuana states, including dozens of new federal indictments and prosecutions. Though U.S. Attorneys often claim that the accused have violated state law in some way, defendants are prevented from using any medical evidence or a state law defense in federal court. If the rescheduling lawsuit is successful and marijuana is reclassified, federal defendants will then gain the basis for a medical necessity defense.

The ASA appeal brief asserts that the federal government has acted arbitrarily and capriciously in its efforts to deny marijuana to millions of patients throughout the U.S. ASA argues in its  brief that the DEA has no “license to apply different criteria to marijuana than to other drugs, ignore critical scientific data, misrepresent social science research, or rely upon unsubstantiated assumptions, as the DEA has done in this case.” ASA is urging the court to “require the DEA to analyze the scientific data evenhandedly,” and order “a hearing and findings based on the scientific record.” The panel of judges assigned to hear oral arguments includes Circuit Judges Henderson and Garland, and Senior Circuit Judge Edwards.

Seventeen states and the District of Columbia have adopted medical marijuana laws that not only recognize the medical efficacy of marijuana, but also provide safe and legal access to it. Since the CRC petition was filed in 2002, an even greater number of studies have been published that show the medical benefits of marijuana for illnesses such as neuropathic pain, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s. Last year, the National Cancer Institute, a division of the federal Department of Health and Human Services, added cannabis to its list of Complementary and Alternative Medicines, pointing out that it’s been therapeutically used for millennia.

AFI: Several patient-plaintiffs are available for interviews

William Britt
Mr. Britt is a 52-year-old resident of Long Beach, California, who developed polio as a child, which caused him to have scoliosis, a fused left ankle, shortened left leg, and bone degeneration in his left hip.  Mr. Britt also suffers from epilepsy, depression and insomnia, and uses marijuana to treat chronic pain in his leg, back, and hip. Marijuana has reduced Mr. Britt’s seizures and depression, and helps him sleep. Although Mr. Britt has taken prescription medication such as Marinol, Robaxin, Soma, and Xanax, none has proven as effective as marijuana.

Michael Krawitz
Mr. Krawitz is a 49-year-old resident of Elliston, Virginia, who suffered an automobile accident in 1984 while serving in the United States Air Force.  Mr. Krawitz has been rated by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) as being totally and permanently disabled. Mr. Krawitz uses marijuana to treat chronic pain and trauma associated with his accident.  He also use marijuana to treat central serous retinopathy. However, because of Mr. Krawitz’s medical marijuana use, he has been denied pain treatment by the VA.

Steph Sherer
Ms. Sherer is a resident of Washington, D.C. and the founder and Executive Director of Americans for Safe Access (ASA). In April of 2000, Ms. Sherer suffered a physical attack that has caused her to suffer from a condition that produced inflammation, muscle spasms, pain throughout her body, and decreased mobility in her neck. Because of multiple pain medications she was prescribed, Ms. Sherer suffered kidney damage. After her doctor recommended medical marijuana, Ms. Sherer successfully reduced her inflammation, muscle spasms, and pain. This prompted Ms. Sherer to found ASA in April of 2002 to share what she learned about the therapeutic value of marijuana and to change public policy.

Further information:
D.C. Circuit announcement of oral arguments: http://AmericansForSafeAccess.org/downloads/ASA_v_DEA_Oral_Arguments.pdf
ASA appeal brief: http://AmericansForSafeAccess.org/downloads/CRC_Appeal.pdf
DEA denial of CRC petition: http://AmericansForSafeAccess.org/downloads/CRC_Petition_DEA_Answer.pdf
CRC rescheduling petition: http://www.drugscience.org/PDF/Petition_Final_2002.pdf

“Any person who has committed a belligerent act” against the US can be detained


“Any person who has committed a belligerent act” against the US can be detained.

S.1253 has become S.1867

H.R. 1540: National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h112-1540&tab=summary

S. 1867: National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s112-1867

S.1867: http://bit.ly/S1867 and http://1.usa.gov/S1867b

Final Senate vote on the bill: http://1.usa.gov/NDAAvote

Final Vote in the House: http://bit.ly/NDAAHouseVote

How it unfolded in the Senate: http://1.usa.gov/NDAAsteps

Synopsis: http://bit.ly/NDAAsynopsis

NDAA Final Transcript from the Senate Floor: http://bit.ly/NDAAfinal

List of Twitter IDs for senators who voted for/against the NDAA: http://on.fb.me/TweetListNDAA

Impeach Every Senator Who Votes for “U.S. is a Battlefield” Bill that Violates Basic Rights”: http://bit.ly/Impeach

Obama to sign indefinite detention bill into law: http://bit.ly/NDAAscoop

Laws governing recall – http://bit.ly/u1QNeH

Recall of state officials – http://bit.ly/cXXIL

Recall of local officials – http://bit.ly/1x04rd

Recall the ndaa traitors. – http://bit.ly/utc7wx

The full legislation and voting – http://bit.ly/lH31x3

Procedure for recall state and local officials pdf – http://1.usa.gov/7MMKXD

NDAA: Liberty Preservation Act – http://bit.ly/zIpCmX

Ron Paul wins if Supreme Court strikes Obamacare


Saturday, 31 March 2012 21:09

BY MURRAY SABRIN
COMMENTARY

How did it get this far?  Even a naturalized citizen like me and tens of millions of others who took an oath to uphold the Constitution can clearly see that the United States is no longer a constitutional republic with limited powers.  

Article I Section 8, which enumerates the federal government’s powers, has been ignored by Congress and the Supreme Court for nearly two centuries. Congress has passed laws that presidents from both major parties have signed that egregiously expanded federal power.

Cleverly, big government advocates have hung their hat on the Commerce Clause instead, which gives the federal government the power to “regulate” interstate commerce.  By invoking the Commerce Clause, statists have created America’s unsustainable welfare state–Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, etc.

An accurate historical reading of the Commerce Clause turns this interpretation on its head.  As Judge Napolitano has pointed out, the Founders wanted to make commerce “regular” in the fledgling republic by removing trade restrictions and other burdens so commerce could flow seamlessly between the states.  In other words, the Commerce Clause was not intended to give the federal government open-ended power to interfere with business activity.

Moreover, a free society requires freedom. The ability of the people to invent, produce, trade, consume, save and enjoy the fruits of their labor is supposed to be the essence of America.  In other words, a limited government, free enterprise republic needs the government to secure the borders and protect liberty, not order people how to live their lives.

If all the Supreme Court justices who heard the challenge to Obamacare this past week were faithful to their oaths to uphold the constitution, they would have excoriated the Solicitor General who was defending Obamacare, and castigated the President and the Congress for creating a law that was an affront to the Constitution—and an assault on the American people’s liberties.  In addition, the Supremes should have taken one giant step for liberty by stating that they will strike down all laws that have been enacted that are inconsistent with Article I Section 8 of the Constitution.  Maybe they will do so in their ruling about Obamacare that is due in June.  However, I would not hold my breath that all nine justices will “see the light,” namely, that Obamacare is the latest statist piece of unconstitutional legislation that must be struck down.

If the Supreme Court strikes down Obamacare, root and branch, the march to liberty could accelerate.

That would mean that Ron Paul has won, even if he is not elected president this year.  The Ron Paul Revolution, the movement to restore the Constitution, is gaining strength day by day.  

We have a long way to go to recreate a free society, but like all great journeys, we must agitate for what is right and honorable, a limited government republic, and not give up the fight worth fighting.

Murray Sabrin is a professor of finance at Ramapo College and blogs at www.MurrarySabrin.com.

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