… A firing squad in Indonesia has shot Australian drug smugglers Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran together with six out of seven other alleged narcotics traffickers. Their deaths have caused an international outcry.
Over the past few days, the foreign ministers of Australia, Brazil, France, and the Philippines had all expressed their dismay over their nationals’ imminent execution. …
Claiming that the cloture vote was “the only one that mattered,” the staff of Ted Cruz excused the senator’s conspicuous absence from the Senate’s final vote, today, to confirm Loretta Lynch for attorney general. Cruz was probably “en route to Texas” for a fundraiser.
Who am I to argue with Ted Cruz on Constitutional matters? He’s a superb scholar on that front. It is, however, fair to point out that Cruz’ failure to register a vote on this final and ghastly nomination was unseemly.
Lynch was actually a drug prosecutor. The other thing Lynch had no shame in doing was shaking down banks: she extracted a “US$7 billion settlement” from Citigroup.
“The Senate later voted 56-43 to confirm Lynch. Cruz was the only member of the chamber not to vote.” (Politico)
He operated through “the ‘Dark Web,’ a network of computer servers around the world accessed only through The Onion Router or TOR” (USA Today). He facilitated voluntary, victimless trade in drugs, online. He is “Ross Ulbricht, the operator of Silk Road, a sprawling underground Internet drug bazaar.”
Enter the criminal syndicate known as Uncle Sam. It had outlawed the commerce Mr. Ulbricht had facilitated between consenting adults. In order to catch Ulbricht, Uncle Sam put to work its vast resources, culled from robbing us, its subjects. Now, federal agents are auctioning off Ulbricht’s private property, which is tantamount to legalized theft.
Federal agents shut down the Silk Road site in October 2013 and seized 29,655 bitcoins, now worth about $7.2 million, from the Silk Road server where buyers and sellers stored the currency. The government also seized 144,336 bitcoins, now worth $35 million, from Ulbricht’s computers. A judge in January ordered the sale of Ulbricht’s bitcoins.
The March 5 sale is the federal government’s third bitcoin auction stemming from its Silk Road prosecution. The federal agency will accept e-mail bids from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on March 5. Bidders must pre-register by March 2 (USA Today).
Not content with stealing a young man’s life and property, the federal government has subjected Ross Ulbricht to a Stalinist show trial, during which due process was practically denied. Via Target Liberty:
The following statement has been issued by the family of Ross Ulbricht, who was recently convicted of being the mastermind of Silk Road:
Ross’ trial is now over.
We were shocked — horrified really — at how unfair it was. Day four saw a reversal from when we last wrote you. Before that we expected evidence favorable to Ross would continue to be presented, and the complete story told.
Instead, the government’s own exculpatory evidence was suppressed; defense witnesses were blocked from testifying; and Ross’ attorney was hamstrung, unable to effectively cross examine government witnesses. It was a one-sided presentation that suppressed facts essential to Ross’ defense.
Ross’ attorney said he will appeal. This is not over! We believe it’s essential for everyone to have a fair trial. When a trial isn’t fair, it is a threat to us all.
Meanwhile, this is a very hard time for Ross and our family. Thanks to everyone who has reached out to us. Your love and support mean so much.
Please send Ross a note. It’s easy to feel cut off and despairing in prison. We know it will help him to hear from you. His address is below.
MCC NEW YORK
METROPOLITAN CORRECTIONAL CENTER
150 PARK ROW
NEW YORK, NY 10007
As always, this is an expensive fight. We are facing a mountain of debt from the trial and need funds to pursue the appeal. Please spread the word, and donate if you can.
The Ulbricht family
“Addicted To The Drug War.”
“Rand Paul Opportunistic—And Wrong—On Race” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:
Police brutality? Yes! Militarization of the police force? You bet! “A Government of Wolves”? Yes again! “The Rise of the Warrior Cop”? No doubt! But racism? Nonsense on stilts! So why have some libertarians applied this rhetoric to the murder-by-cop of black teenager Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Missouri? The same people who would argue against color-coded hate-crime legislation—and rightly so, for a crime is a crime, no matter the skin pigment of perp or prey—would have you believe that it is possible to differentiate a racist from a non-racist shooting or beating.
Predictably, BBC News had taken a more analytical look at the “unrest in Ferguson,” pointing out that liberal outrage had centered on what the left sees as racial injustice. Libertarian anger, conversely, connected “the perceived overreaction by militarized local law enforcement to a critique of the heavy-handed power of government.”
As its libertarian stand-bearers, the BBC chose from the ranks of establishment, libertarian-leaning conservatives. Still, the ideological bifurcation applied was sound. With some exceptions, libertarians have consistently warned about a police state rising; the left has played at identity politics, appealing to its unappeasable base.
As refreshingly clever as its commentators are, BBC is inexact. The very embodiment of political opportunism, Sen. Rand Paul has managed to straddle liberal and libertarian narratives, vaporizing as follows:
“… Anyone who thinks that race does not still, even if inadvertently, skew the application of criminal justice in this country is just not paying close enough attention. …”
The senator from Kentucky is considered “one of the leading figures in today’s libertarian movement.” Even so, on matters libertarian, Rand Paul is a political pragmatist; not the purist his father is. Alas, Rand has imbibed at home some unfortunate, crowd-pleasing habits—the leftist penchant for accusing law enforcement of racism. In 2012, in particular, during the debate between Republican presidential front-runners, in Manchester, New Hampshire, Ron Paul lurched to the left, implicating racism in the unequal outcomes meted by American justice:
“How many times have you seen the white rich person get the electric chair?” he asked. “If we really want to be concerned with racism … we ought to look at the drug laws.”
Laws prohibiting the individual from purchasing, selling, ingesting, inhaling and injecting drugs ought to be repudiated and repealed on the grounds that they are wrong, not racist. But statism is not necessarily racism. Drug laws ensnare more blacks, because blacks are more likely to violate them by dealing in drugs or engaging in violence around commerce in drugs, not necessarily because cops are racists. …
Read the rest of the column. “Rand Paul Opportunistic—And Wrong—On Race” is now on WND.
Georgia police—in the service of the police state and the war on the individual’s natural right to ingest, inhale, inject and trade in substances—incinerate a sleeping baby, during one of their 3:00 AM no-knock, drug-enforcement raids on private property. Oops, wrong house. This too happens all too frequently in the course of doing the Lord’s work. What are ya gonna do?
At least that’s how the culprits have written-off the baby at whom they lobbed a flash grenade.
The thrust of the AP report is not the tragedy, futility and violative nature of police action and mission, but on the age of the victim: Police did not know children were inside. So if adults alone were similarly incinerated would that have been OK?
Go Seahawks! Go Richard Sherman; do whatever it is that a cornerback does. Remember: “Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning throws ‘ducks.'”
I grew up mostly with basketball and real football—the kind Pelé played with no dog muzzle and some real hot footwork. Nevertheless, I am rooting for my home team, the Seattle Seahawks.
Why? It occurred to me that the football fetish in the US has arisen in the context of a country whose inhabitants share very little other than The Game. The host country’s history and founding documents have been turned into a liability by its educrats. The language has been dumbed down and demoted as the number of non-English-speakers clamoring for official recognition for their respective tongues rises. And the faith that once united those who fought to establish the republic has been banished from the public square and confined to the shopping mall, where adherents shop for God.
I love The Evergreen State. However, bar a few of them, I do not love its inhabitants. I share almost nothing with the pinko statists, except for the Seattle Seahawks, my adopted team.
So go Seahawks!
UPDATE I: (2/1): How could I have forgotten the other vital thing I share with residents of the Evergreen State? My bad. Drug legalization. Stop the drug war. “VICES ARE NOT CRIMES.”
UPDATE II: Anthem sung by a real singer, Renée Fleming, not by the likes of the wailing Beyonce and her booty. Gorgeous. Some real cuties on the respective teams.