Oath Keepers Keep the Wrong Oath

bundyranchcoward

With the Bundy Ranch debacle, a group came out into national prominence that few had heard of before. A paramilitary group calling themselves a “militia” by the name of The Oath Keepers. They have been around since 2009; founded by Stewart Rhodes, who advertises himself as a former paratrooper and Yale Law School Graduate, who worked for Ron Paul.

Membership is said to be made up of former military and law enforcement. Now if you were ever in the military, law enforcement or any government position in the United States, a requirement of employment is swearing an Oath. The oath is to among other things “Uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic.” The mission statement of the “Oath Keepers” lists orders they “will NOT obey”, namely:

1. We will NOT obey orders to disarm the American people.

No one in government has ever proposed, nor are they likely to propose “disarming the American people”. First of all it would be impossible and they know it. There are laws in place that permit law enforcement taking weapons away from “prohibited possessors” which is a legal definition applying to those convicted of felony offenses or have current chronic mental health disorders. If these people prefer convicted felons and seriously mentally ill people (like themselves perhaps) to continue to have weapons, I would think the majority of Americans would oppose them.

2. We will NOT obey orders to conduct warrantless searches of the American people.

The 4th Amendment of the United States prohibits warrantless searches. So anyone in government ordering such a search is violating the Constitution. Under existing law, if anything is found incriminating under such a search, it is considered “fruit from the poisoned tree” and thus inadmissible in a Court of Law. A first year law student would get their client out based on that ruling. Further, since the Oath Keepers are former military and law enforcement, it is unlikely they would be ordered to search anyone, let alone without a search warrant. That order would most likely come from Stewart Rhodes, and I will discuss him later.

3. We will NOT obey orders to detain American citizens as “unlawful enemy combatants” or to subject them to military tribunal.

They would never be allowed to detain any American citizen as an unlawful enemy combatant or otherwise since again, they are former military and law enforcement. If they detain anyone for any reason, there is a law against it; it’s called “Unlawful detention” and/or “Kidnapping”. I’m glad they agree to obey the law of the land in that regard.

4. We will NOT obey orders to impose martial law or a “state of emergency” on a state.

As former military and law enforcement, again they are not in a position to be ordered to impose martial law; however, they feel empowered to usurp the legal authority of current and authorized legal representation of the Government in conducting their operations or presence. This is in fact illegal.

5. We will NOT obey orders to invade and subjugate any state that asserts its sovereignty.

As former military and law enforcement, I’m not sure who other than Stewart Rhodes would order them to “invade and subjugate any state asserting its sovereignty”. That would be left to the lawful power of the Government of the United States to her military forces and command of local State Militias as established in the Constitution and Law and last demonstrated in 1860 when certain states illegally seceded from the Union. No, history is not with them on this.

6. We will NOT obey any order to blockade American cities, thus turning them into giant concentration camps.

Again, these are former military and law enforcement personnel and the very concept of anyone setting up concentration camps in the United States is laughable paranoia dreamt up by the “FEMA Camp” nuts who offer no proof, only stretched imaginations of such a thing existing. Kind of brings me back to the “seriously mentally ill” folks being prohibited possessors.

7. We will NOT obey any order to force American citizens into any form of detention camps under any pretext.

See #6.

8. We will NOT obey orders to assist or support the use of any foreign troops on U.S. soil against the American people to “keep the peace” or to “maintain control.”

I’ll repeat as I will with all these idiotic “will not obey” ramblings; these are former military and law enforcement, not in a position to get orders from anyone in a lawful capacity. We are the country who sends troops to other lands, not vice versa. It is more paranoid clap trap from the idiots who prey on the paranoia and stupidity of a small fringe segment of our population.

9. We will NOT obey any orders to confiscate the property of the American people, including food and other essential supplies.

Again since these are former military and law enforcement, they wouldn’t be ordered to confiscate anything from anybody. If they did, it would be known as theft. Punishable by arrest, trial and potential imprisonment. Further, as they did at Bundy Ranch, they are not in a position to demand law enforcement to surrender their weapons to them for confiscation. That is also under federal and state law. Who ordered them to make that demand I wonder?

10. We will NOT obey any orders which infringe on the right of the people to free speech, to peaceably assemble, and to petition their government for a redress of grievances.

Finally and again, these are former military and law enforcement. The only orders they would get would be from themselves. I would remind them the key phrase “peaceably assemble” and point out when they show up with weapons, taking position to shoot and kill law enforcement and those they disagree with, they are not being “peaceable” they are being provocative and potentially violent. They are the ones who should and could be legally rounded up and prosecuted by current military and law enforcement for their actions at Bundy Ranch.

These Ten “Will Not Commandments” denote paranoia and conspiracy theory thinking common among Libertarians, John Birchers, Tea Party and other right wing fringe groups who do it simply for more for publicity to gain the support and admiration of the most gullible among us in America.   Again, the membership of the Oath Keepers at best is a few “former” military and law enforcement officials, not current. If they were current then they have some explaining to do to their chain of command.

This group would like ordinary Americans to think that they are a militia movement in the spirit of our founding and their oath to the writings and spirit of the founders and our Constitution. Well a few things they leave out in their propaganda.

First of all, the militias of the time of our founding were well regulated and answered to the Government. They were established by State government and answered to elected or appointed personnel from those states and later the government of the United States.

Under the Militia act of 1792 and subsequent acts, any state militia, (the only legal militias allowed to exist) could and were called upon by the Government of the United States for the defense of that Government. The best example of that is the Whiskey Rebellion and later, the War of 1812.

Today, these militias go by another name, The National Guard. Any group calling themselves a militia that doesn’t legally adhere to the elected government of the State or Federal Government is in fact only an armed mob of malcontents who present a clear and present danger to public order.

Yale Law School graduate Stewart Rhodes, who encourages military and law enforcement to not follow the lawful orders of their chain of command (leaving them in a precarious legal bind to say the least) has issues with established protocol and rule of law and official conduct. He was admonished by the State Bar of Arizona (a conservative red state mind you) for practicing without a license in 2012. He lied in Court, made false and misleading representation and was fined. You would think a Yale Ivy League Attorney would exhibit a better sense of ethical behavior in Court.

One of Rhodes commanders is former Arizona Sheriff Richard Mack. Mack was the one at Bundy Ranch on tape saying how they were going to place women on the front lines so they can get film of them being shot by BLM authorities. This “honorable and brave” member of the Oath Keepers militia is a former Sheriff from Arizona, a conservative red state. He ran for Congress and was soundly defeated by the conservatives who saw him as too fringe and too crazy to be trusted, even in Congress.

The Oath Keepers do not represent the spirit of 1776, the founders or the Constitution of the United States or any individual state for that matter. They are a “militia” upon themselves only with no allegiance to any elected government. They answer to only themselves. They are armed, paranoid and dangerous. They are becoming more noted by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a hate group for good reason. They hate and are willing to kill for their hate of anything that is not them.

We are a Constitutional Representative Republic under the umbrella of democracy. We elect our officials to hold government office and work on our behalf. Those who are in State houses and Washington DC are there because the people either voted them in, or allowed them to be voted in. They are the legal representation of our government and Constitution until such time as they are voted out of office legally or by the only means permitted by our Constitution. They can be voted out or impeached. In State government they can be recalled by popular vote. Guns aren’t needed nor are they asked for by peace loving and Constitution loving Americans.

To declare war on the elected members of our government, bypassing the provisions established in the constitution and law to deal with those that may cause harm, is to declare war on the people of the United States.

The Oath Keepers, by being armed and threatening law enforcement are a clear and present danger to the public order and safety of the people of the United States. They are seditionists and once shots are fired, they are treasonous deserving of full retaliatory response from the United States Military.

Good luck with that Stewart Rhodes and Richard Mack, the women won’t protect you from a hell fire missile if you really want to take it that far.

The Oath Keepers are former military and law enforcement. The code of military conduct does not permit an active duty soldier to wear the uniform of another military organization and swear allegiance to that organization, which is a Court Martial offense.

Further, just because they are former US military and law enforcement doesn’t mean they are patriotic and should be listened to. After all, Benedict Arnold was a war hero and look what he did because his ego was bruised by the events around him.

The Oath Keepers are just angry, paranoid and delusional nuts who like to play with their guns and come off like some movie war hero defending the country. They in fact place this nation and her people in real peril because they do not recognize the government the majority of the voting public have place in office.

If they don’t like it, run for office, don’t go running for your guns. That childish, dangerous and un American.

 

The Tea Party are the Real RINOs

My twitter bio talks of how I left the GOP after over 30 years due to the “Tea Party theft” of the party. Many times on twitter I will get an @ mention on my timeline from a troll, usually from the Tea Party trying to insult me by saying I’m a RINO (Republican in Name Only) as are many moderates, progressives, liberals and even a few conservatives who don’t follow in lockstep with the Tea Party agenda for the party. Well it’s time to bring up some history that sadly for the Tea Party faithful, has a liberal bias; as does truth, logic, reality and math.

The Republican Party emerged in 1854 to combat the Kansas-Nebraska Act that threatened to expand slavery to the territories. The party had no representation in the South and started recruiting Whigs to fill their ranks. They were made up of abolitionists, progressives and folks who wanted to modernize the nation’s economic system. The Whigs were losing support nationally while the Democrats were still a force throughout the nation. Their party dates back to Thomas Jefferson and continued to be very strong in the South.

Well the Republicans were successful and in only 6 years became a national force that gained enough control and gathered enough Electoral College votes to elect Abraham Lincoln as President. However, the GOP was also a diverse party of conservatives, progressives and radicals who worked for common goals. The Democratic control State governments of the South rebelled to defend “state rights” and the Civil War began. I need not go into the history of what happened next. The Democrats lost the War, the Union under GOP Control won, the 13th Amendment was passed despite Democratic opposition, Slavery was officially ended in this nation for all time. It was the Republicans who did this, not the Democrats.

In the generations that followed, many of the core principles in both parties changed to some degree. However both parties had their fair share of progressives, liberals, conservatives, bigots and tolerant people. It is interesting that the presidential battles in the early part of the 20th Century between the parties was between the best “progressive way” to move forward. Progressive Republican William McKinley favored “pluralism” where prosperity would be shared by all ethnic and religious groups. Though business clearly sided with the GOP, it was Teddy Roosevelt who enforced the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, breaking up monopolies. He ended child labor, he pushed for the first “living wage” and wanted national healthcare. These were GOP ideas. His successor, Taft wasn’t as progressive as Teddy but still favored the principles, if not as dramatically. A battle erupted between the two and the GOP was split allowing a Democrat, Woodrow Wilson to take the Presidency, on a Progressive Agenda (though he was also clearly racist). Wilson also unlike many Democrats at the time had strong business support due to problems they were having with the Republicans regulating their businesses.

In the years that followed both parties continued to have among their membership a mixture of conservative and liberal membership and values, pro and anti-business platforms, they were parties of who within their membership was the diversity of America. Some platform stood out over others between the parties in elections, but the representatives tended to argue for the constituency they in fact represented. The Democrats enjoyed national prominence thanks to what FDR was able to accomplish for the entire nation. However Democrats in the Northeast were far different from the Democrats in the Deep South. They were all Democrats, but the group later known to be the “Dixiecrats” didn’t favor much of what either party did in terms of civil rights and desegregation.

50 years ago the mixtures of both parties changed and began devolving to what we have today.

Democrats enjoyed nationwide success; however, racism, segregation, intolerance remained a stain on our national fabric and was enforced by Democrats in the Deep South. Using the martyred President as a rallying cry and with the help of Republicans in the House and Senate, Lyndon Johnson was able to impose Civil Rights and Voting Rights that infuriated the Southern Democrats.

Johnson knew what he was doing and knew he was losing Southern Democratic Support for a generation. Turned out to be a lot longer. A famous Democrat, Strom Thurmond who has the record of maintaining the longest filibuster in Senate History to try to stop civil rights legislation changed party affiliation to the GOP. He wasn’t alone.

In 1968 racist Democrats known as the Dixiecrats left the party to join the Republican Party claiming it was a “conservative choice” because they saw civil rights as “liberal” and anything opposite of civil rights by their definition was conservative. Seeing that, Republicans under Nixon began the “Southern Strategy” to embrace these racists, who couldn’t see past their racism, to follow a party they wanted to punish their former party, the Democrats.

This is how the former Democratic “Dixiecrats” became the base of today’s Republican Party.

The true RINOS are the Tea Party because they abandon not only traditional Republican ideas from the Party’s founding, they abandon the traditional values of the Democratic Party because they can’t see past their racism and their hate. They would rather suffer than to give in to being led by someone they see as being lesser to them.

In the years that followed the imposition of the Southern Strategy the Republicans found themselves victims of the monster they created.

More and more the rational thinking moderates, progressives, liberals and many true conservatives were pushed out of the party due to the litmus test the Republican Southern base imposed. The base began to take over the party structure outside of the Deep South. In the 1990’s, with the lockstep unity and litmus test sponsored by the Southern Base, Newt Gingrich imposed a “do not compromise” edict for the GOP in dealing with the Democrats in the House and Senate. This was something that never happened in the history of this nation founded on the principles of compromise, recognizing out of many one; E Pluribus Unum.

When Barack Obama became President, with the financial funding of the Libertarian Koch Brothers, a “grassroots” organization known as the Tea Party was created. These racists placed their hatred of Blacks on the entire Democratic Party and those who voted for and supported President Obama. So much so, they would cut their own means of support (Medicare, Social Security, Food Stamps, Unemployment Insurance, Social Safety Net) in order to destroy this presidency.

This is racism; there is no doubt about it. Never in history has a President or Cabinet Member been treated with such public disrespect in Congress. This was born out of racism and racism carries it forward. Factually both Obama and Holder by policy and acts are strictly centrists. Their views are indistinguishable from those of Kennedy, Eisenhower, Nixon, Ford, Reagan or Clinton. The only true difference is they are Black.

The Tea Party is the base of the GOP and this base is funded by the Koch Brothers. They are the ones pulling the strings by taking advantage of their blind racist hatred of Obama and everyone and everything associated with him to gain ultimate Oligarchic power in this nation. The Tea Party is too stupid and blinded by their racism to even see this.

A true American, regardless of any party affiliation recognizes that compromise is essential to ensure the many are heard and taken care of. That all have equal rights and no one should suffer any discrimination regardless of race, sex, religion, sexual orientation or ethnic background.

Today the Koch Brother’s Tea Party movement of angry racist brown shirts is leading this nation and her people to Oligarchy and national ruin for the benefit of the billionaires who apparently need more money. We cannot allow this. The Tea Party are PINOs, Patriots in Name Only

If you support American Rights for all Americans who are born or naturalized in this nation, you cannot vote GOP this or any year until that party rids themselves of their racist core and billionaire backing. Forget party labels, we’re either Americans or we’re not. Vote American values, not racism or oligarchic servitude.

A State of Oligarchy

Oligarchy: a form of power structure in which power effectively rests with a small number of people. These people could be distinguished by royalty, wealth, family ties, education, corporate, or military control. Such states are often controlled by a few prominent families who typically pass their influence from one generation to the next, but inheritance is not a necessary condition for the application of this term.

Not that many years ago, if someone complained this country was moving towards an Oligarchy I would dismiss that person as being hyperbolic. However I see the trend over the past few years, while others report it’s been moving this way for 30 or more years. It’s getting harder to dismiss this as a simple talking point. We’ve always known that big money controlled politicians via donations. However it was always tempered with limits, disclosures and at one time the fairness doctrine. Though not completely thwarted, there were mechanisms in place that at least gave a semblance of a fair playing field in the world of local and national politics.

Our founders in their first amendment to the Constitution place in “Freedom of Speech” or more accurately reflected as freedom of thought, freedom of ideas. No one could be kept from expressing their views on politics, religion, economy, science, anything. As Americans we couldn’t be censored by the State and certainly not by individuals. Now over the years, limits were placed on first amendment rights. The most famous was not yelling fire in a crowded theatre. You couldn’t use freedom of speech to insight violent civil unrest.

Legally you can say anything you want about anybody else or anything. Very little can be done to you in a criminal sense unless it can be shown it was done to purposefully and maliciously defraud. No, libeling someone isn’t criminal, it’s civil. We have the right to get an attorney if we can afford one to go up against the person who slanders or libels us, assuming they can’t afford a better more expensive attorney (more about that later).

With limitations in place and a Court system that at the very top exclaims “Equal Justice Under Law” that in theory applied to all in both criminal and civil cases, we had a level and fair playing field. Speech was protected, but limited in extreme cases to avoid abuse and civil unrest. Hell, even the Nazis and Ku Klux Klan have a right to march in public, you have a right to call our President a “mongrel”, you have a right to even lie in political ads (more about that later), you just can’t threaten the lives of government officials, celebrities or ordinary people of any classification nor can you lie to defraud and deceive maliciously.

Going back to the fairness doctrine that has a bad reputation, there once was a time where if a broadcast made a political point using the public airwaves, that station was required to provide equal time to express a counter point if someone wanted to make it. It was a time when both sides of any political argument got equal time to be heard and the people could make up their own minds. It was a proactive way to avoid censorship of ideas. Democracy grows and matures with an open discussion of ideas with everyone keeping an open mind. However during the Reagan administration, the FCC eliminated the fairness doctrine on the public airways.

Later, as corporations who owned the stations were absolved from taking a financial loss from reporting real news, more stations began to edit the news not for accuracy, but to sell airtime to advertisers. Today Miley Cyrus straddling a wrecking ball gets as much if not more airtime than a fire killing hundreds, or a policy statement effecting millions of Americans. Celebrity garners more attention and airtime than actual news. What’s worse, if there is going to be a political theme to any news story, rest assure the station owners will decide how that is presented.

What finally nailed the coffin shut regarding a free and open discussion of ideas on a level playing field on the public airways was in the Clinton administration when he allowed the merger of radio, television and newspapers across the country. Now only a few corporations control all the news being heard in this nation whether it be in print, on the radio or public airways. Reagan started it, Clinton finished it. Plenty of blame to go around.

So because of what I just described, those who own the media corporations that educate the American public, more of their political views were being heard. Now when you are a multi millionaire or billionaire, you could be either Right leaning or Left leaning, but studies show that nearly 60% of the wealthiest people in this country lean Right. And just about all of them who control the news in this country lean Right. So for decades now, a conservative narrative has been fed to the American public and that public has responded by moving more to the Right.

Those once considered moderates are now considered liberals (as if that’s a bad word) due to the moving of public views. With this change, the party that is supposed to represent “Conservative Views”, the Republicans, began winning more local and national elections. These office holders then began appointing Judges to the various benches both locally and nationally who tended to be more conservative.

Now I use the word conservative because that what these people want to call themselves. However they’re not. The traditional values of conservatism dating back to the early days of the Republican Party are now considered by this current group of faux conservatives to be liberal (again not a bad word). What we have masquerading as a conservative group are people who think they are entitled to everything with no responsibilities. Something the GOP use to, and still do blame on the Democrats. They equate “conservatism” with just having money. If you are wealthy, if you are part of the class of people who either earned, inherited or stole millions of dollars you are entitled to everything government can provide you. You’re entitled to tax cuts, subsidies, protections from liabilities, tort protections, you get bailouts because you are too big to fail. You get everything while those who don’t have all that much have to sacrifice all the more.

The founders warned of too much money being in the hands of the few. This is where we are moving to. Income disparity is at its highest rate since just before the Great Depression. The middle-class is shrinking, the poor are getting poorer, yet those in the 1%, even during the recession have gotten richer. Money meant for those in need ended up going to those who didn’t need it.

What would the wealthiest people in this country do regarding politics? They want their candidates making the laws, enforced by their chief executives and sanctified by their judges and justices. Well two things sealed that deal for the “Oligarchs.”

First was Citizen’s United. In the Roberts’ Court’s 5-4 decision, over a hundred years of Supreme Court decisions stating that Corporations weren’t people and money wasn’t speech were overturned. When you consider that George W Bush’s two appointments to the Supreme Court were both Corporate “conservative” attorneys who both swore at their confirmation hearings they would uphold “stare decisis” honoring the previous rulings of the Court, you knew the Oligarch’s wishes were coming true.

Sure enough, in an Ayn Rand wet dream, Corporations were now people and money was now speech. Corporations could now give unlimited campaign donations to candidates of their choosing to air ads (many of which are misleading or outright lies) on stations owned by like minded Oligarchs to sway public opinion and voting their way. Equal Justice Under Law was changed to “Some People are More Equal Than Others”. By using their money and influence to flood the airways, candidates they don’t want get effectively censored. They lose their freedom of speech because money isn’t just speech, money IS speech. If your thoughts, ideas, ideology don’t have money from billionaires backing it up, you will be censored. I doubt any of the founders had this in mind when they enacted the Bill of Rights.

Legal Scholars, Constitutional Law experts from across the country by huge margins disputed the findings of the 5-4 Citizens United ruling as wrong, as not in keeping with the intent and history of the Constitution. However, like with Climate Change and Economics, it doesn’t matter what 90% of the experts say, it’s what the “conservatives” paid experts that matters because they get well paid for pushing the Oligarch’s party line.

Now we have another 5-4 Supreme Court decision regarding McCutcheon. This removed the limit of anyone giving too much money to too many candidates to influence an election. It’s been disclosed that in a country of 315 million Americans, only 646 

ever came even close to meeting or exceeding that contribution caps that were thrown out. What’s more, it was only a few Billionaires who pushed this case. Keep in mind, 4.4 million individuals donors gave to President Obama.

People like Charles and David Koch, Sheldon Adelson, Shaun McCutcheon, Art Pope, Rupert Murdoch can just about give all they want to as many as they want to throw an election their way. Individual recipients of campaign cash are still limited to what they can receive from one donor unless that donor uses the loophole built into the decision bigger than a wide load limousine. The Oligarchs won.

Too much has been spoken regarding Liberal versus Conservative. That is in my humble opinion a false argument. I say that because as I pointed out above, today’s conservatives don’t share any of the ideas of previous conservatives. They align themselves with cash and power and whatever it takes to maintain and grow it. Those people are opposed to those who openly fight it. It’s not Conservative versus Liberal, its Oligarchy versus Democracy. The Oligarchs are winning because they have key people in place changing the laws and Court ruling in their favor and they aren’t done yet.

Can ordinary people use the Courts to fight back? Not really. The Roberts’ Court has changed the rules regarding class action lawsuits where the many could get together to share resources to go after corporations and their high price attorneys. Good legal help cost money and they will go where the money is. Oligarchs control the court system.

Can we stop the campaign ads on the airwaves that out and out lie about the candidate or position they’re taking? No we can’t. There is no “truth in advertising” law regarding political campaign ads. All you can do is put up your own ad to fight it, assuming you have the money to do it. Oligarchs control the messaging

We are moving back to the age of the Robber Barons. What turned things around back then was a populace resurgence that came about because of the suffering created by the Great Depression. Progressives voted in FDR and a progressive Congress. Can this be done again? Yes, but it will be much harder because too much power and too much of the media is in the hands of the Oligarchs who hold the strings of those in our government. They control the House, they control the Supreme Court and are set to take the Senate in 2014 and hope to take the executive Branch in 2016.

The only thing that can slow down and reverse the Oligarchic reign of the Koch Brother, the Walton’s, Art Pope, Rupert Murdoch, and Sheldon Adelson and his own fucking primary of GOP hopefuls is social media and those of us who see what is happening making sure their candidates don’t win. We need to really fight using what little free speech we have to educate and motivate the voters to what’s in their interests, not the Oligarchs. Then and only then will this trend end. Otherwise we will be Serfdom USA

These are the Oligarchs; don’t vote for anyone or any position supported by them.

C&DKoch

Charles and David Koch

Waltons

Walton Heirs

art pope

Art Pope

rupert

Rupert Murdoch

scooter

Sheldon “Scooter” Adelson

They got the money, they got the power. All we have are the votes. Don’t you think maybe we should use them effectively for a change?