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DC Police Raid Home, Arrest Man for Possession of Single Shotgun Shell and Spent Cartridge

October 24, 2013 2 comments

“To say that anit-gun paranoia is out of hand in some of our large cities is an understatement. That’s particularly so in Washington, D.C., where one would expect that the local officials would have actually read the Constitution (since it’s showcased right there in the city), the levels to which the police are willing to go to persecute gun owners is simply astounding. Today’s shining example of the idiocy of D.C.’s gun laws and the danger they pose to the American people comes to us via Emily Miller at washingtontimes.com. . .”

Mark Witaschek, a successful financial adviser with no criminal record, is facing two years in prison for possession of unregistered ammunition after D.C. police raided his house looking for guns. Mr. Witaschek has never had a firearm in the city, but he is being prosecuted to the full extent of the law. The trial starts on Nov. 4.

[...]

After entering the house, the police immediately went upstairs, pointed guns at the heads of Mr. Witaschek and his girlfriend, Bonnie Harris, and demanded they surrender, facedown and be handcuffed.

[...]

His 16-year-old son was in the shower when the police arrived. “They used a battering ram to bash down the bathroom door and pull him out of the shower, naked,” said his father. “The police put all the children together in a room, while we were handcuffed upstairs. I could hear them crying, not knowing what was happening.”

[...]

The police found no guns in the house, but did write on the warrant that four items were discovered: “One live round of 12-gauge shotgun ammunition,” which was an inoperable shell that misfired during a hunt years earlier. Mr. Witaschek had kept it as a souvenir. “One handgun holster” was found, which is perfectly legal.

Via The Truth About Guns

ObamaCare Navigators Won’t Have to Pass Background Checks Before Collecting Your Formerly Private Information for Federal Data Hub

September 26, 2013 1 comment

“One of ObamaCare’s many alarming aspects is the collection of your financial, medical, and other personal data for the Federal Data Hub. This will render the concept of private information obsolete as part of America’s promised “fundamental transformation.” Data for the Federal Data Hub will be collected by drones now being hired by the increasingly malevolent Department of Health and Human Services. They will be paid as much as $48 per hour with money expropriated from you. That is good pay in Obama’s moribund economy, especially considering that these drones (or “navigators”) don’t even need to have a high school education — or pass background checks.”

Via Moon Battery

DHS developing facial-scanning technology for police

“The Department of Homeland Security is testing surveillance technology that could someday allow law enforcement to scan crowds with video cameras and ID people by their faces — in another advancement that could raise major privacy concerns.

The department acknowledged Wednesday that testing is still in the works, and claimed it is “not ready for deployment,” following a report in The New York Times about progress being made in the facial-scanning push.

The department for years has faced challenges to its screening procedures at U.S. airports, which have been criticized as invasive. Intelligence agencies like the National Security Agency are separately trying to assure the public that their surveillance of Internet activity and phone calls respects privacy rights as well. The prospect of numerous law enforcement agencies having access to a facial-screening system is raising a new set of privacy questions.

But a DHS official told Fox News that any emerging technologies “sustain, and do not erode, privacy protections.” “

Via Fox News

How The NSA Scours 75% Of The Nation’s Internet Traffic – In One Chart

“The NSA – which possesses only limited legal authority to spy on U.S. citizens – has, according to the Wall Street Journal, built a surveillance network that covers more Americans’ Internet communications than officials have publicly disclosed, current and former officials say. The system has the capacity to reach roughly 75% of all U.S. Internet traffic. The NSA’s filtering, carried out with telecom companies, is designed to look for communications that either originate or end abroad, or are entirely foreign but happen to be passing through the U.S. But the WSJ reports that officials say the system’s broad reach makes it more likely that purely domestic communications will be incidentally intercepted and collected in the hunt for foreign ones. Details of these surveillance programs were gathered from interviews with current and former intelligence and government officials and people from companies that help build or operate the systems, or provide data. Most have direct knowledge of the work. Here is how the system operates…”

Via Zero Hedge

Police Seizing Cash And Property From Citizens Without Charges

August 16, 2013 2 comments

“Police in many parts of the United States are routinely seizing cash and valuables from citizens without arrest or trial. Worst of all, police officers in Texas and Virginia have actually been stopping motorists and seizing their cash.

Having a large amount of cash on you or in your car is now apparently a crime in some parts of the United States. Worse, laws set up to seize cash from drug dealers are being used to seize money from people stopped for minor traffic violations.

A disturbing article in The New Yorker magazine mentions several instances of police seizing cash from citizens. The cops used a legal doctrine called forfeiture to seize the cash. The frightening thing is that the cash and valuables can be taken without an arrest or even criminal charges. They can simply seize it on probable cause and in many cases that have nothing to do with drugs.”

Via Off the Grid News

They Are Systematically Destroying Our Independence And Making Us All Serfs Of The State

“The percentage of Americans that are economically independent has dropped to a stunningly low level. In order to be economically independent, you have got to be able to take care of yourself without any assistance from anyone else. Unless you are independently wealthy, that means that you either have your own business or you have a full-time job. Unfortunately, as you will see below, the percentage of Americans that are self-employed is at an all-time record low and the percentage of Americans with a full-time job has declined to a level not seen in about 30 years. As a result, more Americans than ever find themselves forced to turn to the government for assistance. When you add it all up, about half of all Americans get money from the government each month these days. And yes, there will always be poor people that cannot take care of themselves that need help, but when you have more than half of the population dependent on the government that is a major problem. You see, the truth is that our independence is systematically being taken away from us and we are steadily being made serfs of the state. And once you become a serf of the state, it is very hard to resist anything the government is doing in a meaningful way. After all, the money that you are getting from the government is enabling you to survive. In essence, your allegiance has been at least partially purchased and you may not even realize it.”

Via The Economic Collapse Blog

Obama On NSA Spying: “I Would Be Concerned Too, If I Weren’t Inside The Government”

“In what is as close to saying ‘trust us, we’re from the government,’ as it gets; President Obama’s traitor-identifying, blame-pointing, cover-your-assing speech on Friday has done nothing to end the supposedly “critical NSA counter-terrorism tool,” from being used on American citizens. People of America should be relieved, as the President stated unequivocally that he is “comfortable that the program is not being abused.” If only American citizens were able to see all the moving pieces, Obama implied, they would say “you know what? These [government] folks are following the law,” but because the program remains classified, it remains impossible to know what is really going on. Reassuring rhetoric aside, as the AP notes, Obama offered these inspiring words regarding the ongoing concerns that law-abiding citizens may still have beyond his assurances: “I would be worried too, if I weren’t inside the government.” Another teleprompter-less glimpse of what he really thinks? Perhaps; but for now, the NSA will continue to sweep phone records of all Americans with the possibility of creating similar databases of credit card transactions, hotel records, and Internet searches.”

Via Zero Hedge

The American Surveillance State Is Here – Can It Be Evaded?

“On any given day, the average American going about his daily business will be monitored, surveilled, spied on and tracked in more than 20 different ways, by both government and corporate eyes and ears.

A byproduct of this new age in which we live, whether you’re walking through a store, driving your car, checking email, or talking to friends and family on the phone, you can be sure that some government agency, whether the NSA or some other entity, is listening in and tracking your behavior. As I point out in my new book, A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, this doesn’t even begin to touch on the corporate trackers that monitor your purchases, web browsing, Facebook posts and other activities taking place in the cyber sphere.

The revelations by Edward Snowden only scrape the surface in revealing the lengths to which government agencies and their corporate allies will go to conduct mass surveillance on all communications and transactions within the United States.”

Via Alt Market

USPS takes photos of all mail

“The Postal Service takes pictures of every piece of mail processed in the United States — 160 billion last year — and keeps them on hand for up to a month.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said the photos of the exterior of mail pieces are used primarily for the sorting process, but they are available for law enforcement, if requested.

The photos have been used “a couple of times” by to trace letters in criminal cases, Donahoe told the AP on Thursday, most recently involving ricin-laced letters sent to President Barack Obama and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

“We don’t snoop on customers,” said Donahoe, adding that there’s no big database of the images because they are kept on nearly 200 machines at processing facilities across the country. Each machine retains only the images of the mail it processes. “

Via Yahoo

Type The Wrong Thing Into A Search Engine And The Secret Police Will Come Knocking On Your Door

“The control freaks are out of control. Once upon a time America was “the land of the free”, but now it has become “the land of the bureaucrats”, and these bureaucrats are absolutely obsessed with watching, tracking, monitoring and controlling virtually everything that you do. Last month, I wrote about how the Obama administration forced a small-time magician out in Missouri to submit a 32 page disaster plan for the little rabbit that he uses in his magic shows for kids. A lot of people thought that story was quite humorous, but the examples in this article are not so funny. In recent days we have learned that the government is monitoring just about everything that we do on the Internet, and we have also learned that a couple of innocent Google searches can result in armed government agents pounding on your front door. If you do not believe this, read on…”

Via End of the American Dream

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