Sunday, November 2, 2014

Wake-up Time in America

My concern over the future of our personal freedoms grows even more after reading an OpEd piece in the New York Times yesterday. 

The piece titled, Deceptions of the F.B.I. begins as follows:

If your Internet service goes down and you call a technician, can you be certain that the person who arrives at your door is actually there to restore service? What if he is a law enforcement agent in disguise who has disabled the service so he can enter your home to look around for evidence of a crime?

This is just one article in a series of revelations about how those sworn to defend us from the bad guys are themselves becoming bad guys. 

A New York Times article earlier in the week described about how the IRS confiscated $33,000 from a business owner without even the hint of due process. 

One business owner summed up the situation after trying to deal with the IRS as follows:

“I don’t think they’re really interested in anything,” Mr. Potashnik said of the prosecutors. “They just want the money.”

There are many articles citing police abuses confiscating cash and property from innocent Americans--again without any due process. In my article We Are Being Monitored--Everywhere, I wrote about the postal surveillance system and License Plate Recognition programs.

The problem? When innocent citizens are deprived of their financial assets or other personal assets the onus is on the them to defend themselves and that is expensive! If it costs $30,000 to recover $33,000--is it worth it? You bet it is! But often the legal costs can easily exceed the expected recovery. Even so, why should an innocent person have to pay anything to recover what is and was rightfully and legally theirs?

We are supposed to be protected from unreasonable search and seizure--that would be the 4th Amendment. Where does it stop? We are paying for all of this surveillance through our taxes!

Here we are on the brink of a  mid-term election and none of these issues have surfaced. We are mired in minor issues while our basic rights are being usurped by the very institutions chartered to defend them. 

Here's an idea--if agents of the government (e.g., IRS, FBI, police, Secret Service, DHS) confiscate money or property from innocent Americans--then that agency should pay all of the legal costs associated with the recovery. Something as simple as this will transfer the burden from the innocent to those who are making the accusations and rushing to judgment without cause. Currently, and I am fascinated by this, those confiscating the money and goods are protected from prosecution and paying restitution.

"We the People" need leaders who will correct these wrongs and defend our Constitutional rights! 

Soon, I hope.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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