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items tagged with FBI

The FBI: America’s Secret Police
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Guest Commentaries

2014-11-06 16:00:50

Every regime has its own name for its secret police. Mussolini’s OVRA carried out phone surveillance on government officials. Stalin’s NKVD carried out large-scale purges, terror, and depopulation. Hitler’s Gestapo went door-to-door ferreting out dissidents and other political “enemies” of the state. And in the U.S., it’s the Federal Bureau of Investigation that does the dirty work of ensuring compliance, keeping tabs on potential dissidents, and punishing those who dare to challenge the status quo.

Whether the FBI is planting undercover agents in churches, synagogues, and mosques, is issuing fake emergency letters to gain access to Americans’ phone records, is using intimidation tactics to silence Americans who are critical of the government, or is persuading impressionable individuals to plot acts of terror and then entrapping them, the overall impression of the nation’s secret police force is that of a well-dressed thug, flexing its muscles and doing the boss’ dirty work.

It’s a far cry from the glamorized G-men depicted in Hollywood film noirs and spy thrillers. The government’s henchmen have become the embodiment of how power, once acquired, can be so easily corrupted and abused.


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Ted Rall: Beyond the Law
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Lifestyle

Category: Ted Rall

2014-10-09 02:30:39



U.S. Senator Rand Paul’s Letter of Opposition to the PATRIOT Act
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Guest Commentaries

2011-02-18 11:46:28

(Editor’s note: U.S. Senator Rand Paul [R-Kentucky] released the following letter to his fellow Senators on February 15.)

James Otis argued against general warrants and writs of assistance that were issued by British soldiers without judicial review and that did not name the subject or items to be searched.

He condemned these general warrants as “the worst instrument[s] of arbitrary power, the most destructive of English liberty and the fundamental principles of law, that ever w[ere] found in an English law book.” Otis objected to these writs of assistance because they “placed the liberty of every man in the hands of every petty officer.” The Fourth Amendment was intended to guarantee that only judges – not soldiers or policemen – would issue warrants. Otis’ battle against warrantless searches led to our Fourth Amendment guarantee against unreasonable government intrusion.

My main objection to the PATRIOT Act is that searches that should require a judge’s warrant are performed with a letter from an FBI agent – a National Security Letter (“NSL”).

I object to these warrantless searches being performed on United States citizens. I object to the 200,000 NSL searches that have been performed without a judge’s warrant.


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The FBI: Going Rogue
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Guest Commentaries

2011-02-17 11:05:48

“The minute the FBI begins making recommendations on what should be done with its information, it becomes a Gestapo.” – J. Edgar Hoover

The history of the FBI is the history of how America – once a nation that abided by the rule of law and held the government accountable for its actions – has steadily devolved into a police state where laws are unidirectional, intended as a tool for government to control the people and rarely the other way around.

The FBI was established in 1908 (as the Bureau of Investigation) by President Theodore Roosevelt and Attorney General Charles Bonaparte as a small task force assigned to deal with specific domestic crimes, its first being to survey houses of prostitution in anticipation of enforcing the White Slave Traffic Act. Initially quite limited in its abilities to investigate so-called domestic crimes, the FBI slowly expanded in size, scope, and authority over the course of the 20th Century.


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Ted Rall: A New Strategy for Staying Afloat
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Lifestyle

Category: Ted Rall

2010-07-07 11:02:49





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