Justice Articles from 2020
New Ordinance Outlaws Giving Money To Panhandlers, Violaters Will Be Fined and Jailed
by Jack Burns
Posted January 24, 2020
Wichita, Kansas used to be known as “Cowtown” because of its cattle trade but now if people stop and give something as small as a cheeseburger to a homeless person they run the risk going to jail and paying a $500 fine. The ordinance was recently approved by the city council and now complicates matters for both panhandlers and philanthropic citizens alike.
Beat downs and arrests by police are, unfortunately, becoming a larger and larger part of the homeless culture. Not only do police regularly harass the homeless but The Free Thought Project has reported on incidents in which officers have confiscated blankets and tents from homeless people in the middle of the winter.
Whether the dehumanization is to make way for the up and coming comic book festival or just a run of the mill sadistic police gang murder, homeless folks in the US are finding themselves in an increasingly hostile police state. More…
Edward Snowden Speaks Out for Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning
by Adam Dick
Posted January 19, 2020
Julian Assange of WikiLeaks has been silenced. Assange was prevented from communicating with the outside world in his final 13 months at the Ecuador embassy in London, where he had obtained sanctuary from extradition to the United States. The silencing has continued in a British prison where Assange has been detained pending extradition to the US since British police forcibly removed him from the embassy in April.
Similarly, communication by Chelsea Manning has been much curtailed after Manning reveled United States military secrets. First, Manning served seven years in United States military prison after being convicted for the leak. Released from prison in 2017, Manning has been condemned to jail for most of the time since March of this year for refusing to testify for a grand jury involved in the US government’s effort to prosecute Assange.
Manning, a whistleblower, and Assange, a publisher who through WikiLeaks helped make public revelations of government activities provided by Manning and other whistleblowers, are prevented by the US and British governments, respectively, from speaking up on their own behalf. But that does not mean that other individuals cannot speak up for them. In fact, with Assange and Manning’s ability to communicate limited, it is more important than ever that advocates for their freedom speak up on their behalf. More…
Chelsea and Julian are in Jail. History Trembles
by Craig Murray
Posted January 16, 2020
Tonight both Chelsea Manning and Julian Assange are in jail, both over offences related to the publication of materials specifying US war crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq, and both charged with nothing else at all. No matter what bullshit political and MSM liars try to feed you, that is the simple truth. Manning and Assange are true heroes of our time, and are suffering for it.
If a Russian opposition politician were dragged out by armed police, and within three hours had been convicted on a political charge by a patently biased judge with no jury, with a lengthy jail sentence to follow, can you imagine the Western media reaction to that kind of kangaroo court? Yet that is exactly what just happened in London.
District Judge Michael Snow is a disgrace to the bench who deserves to be infamous well beyond his death. He displayed the most plain and open prejudice against Assange in the 15 minutes it took for him to hear the case and declare Assange guilty, in a fashion which makes the dictators’ courts I had witnessed, in Babangida’s Nigeria or Karimov’s Uzbekistan, look fair and reasonable, in comparison to the gross charade of justice conducted by Michael Snow. More…
[Media] [Justice] [Economic]
$21 Trillion Heist: It’s Only Theft When You’re Not Wealthy Enough to Get Away With It
By Tim Nuell
Posted January 14, 2020
Perhaps the Washington Post and the New York Times have their top teams of investigative journalists tracking the trail of the missing $21 Trillion. Maybe MSNBC, FOX and CNN are all simply waiting for the February ratings period to drop their bombshells about the missing money. But don’t bet on it.
Both Forbes and Reuters reported the news back in December. Still, the major corporate media outlets that currently control the country’s group think have somehow managed to keep 21 trillion worms nestled neatly inside a can with an open lid.
The idea that $21 Trillion slipped through the cracks at the Defense Department and HUD, under the watch of both political parties, doesn’t fit the desired narrative at the nation’s top newspapers either. The fact that their legions of journalists have not attempted to publicly debunk the story speaks volumes about the report’s legitimacy. With that in mind, the reality that no major newspaper has shed any light on the work done by Skidmore and his team, much less expanded upon it, is shameful at the very least. At its worst, the press appear as potential co-conspirators in a coverup, even if nothing nefarious is actually afoot. More…
At least $21 TRILLION is missing from 2 federal agencies and this figure is likely even higher once other agencies are considered. How much is $21 Trillion? It’s enough to give $1 million to 21 million different people. It’s also enough to give $65,000 to every living human being in America.
Why is this story not on the front pages of every newspaper? Why is this not the lead story of every newscast? Why are none of the political candidates talking about this.
The New ‘Black Codes’
by Chris Hedges
Posted January 8, 2020
The police forces in impoverished urban communities, equipped with military-grade weapons and empowered to harass and kill largely at will, along with mass incarceration, are the principal tools for the social control of the poor. There is little pretense of justice and even less of protection and safety. The corporate state and our oligarchic rulers fear a backlash from those they abandoned in deindustrialized enclaves across the country, what Malcolm X called our “internal colonies.” The daily brutality and terror keep the poor, especially poor people of color, in bondage. On average, more than 1,100 people, or one every eight hours, almost all unarmed, are killed every year by police in the United States. These killings are not accidents. They are not the results of a failed system. The system works exactly as it is designed to work. And until the system of corporate power is destroyed, nothing will change for the poor, or the rest of Americans.
Our national conversation on race and crime, which refuses to confront the economic, social and political systems of exploitation and white supremacy, has been a whitewash. The vast pools of the unemployed and underemployed, especially among people of color, are part of the design of predatory corporate capitalism. And so are the institutions, especially the police, the courts, the jails and the prisons, tasked with maintaining social control of those the system has cast aside. More…
Asset Forfeiture and the Destruction of American Liberty
by Jacob G. Hornberger
Posted January 3, 2020
For centuries, it has been an established tenet of Western jurisprudence that a person cannot be punished for a crime unless the government first convicts him of the crime in a court of law. After the Constitution called the federal government into existence, our American ancestors demanded that this principle be enshrined in the Bill of Rights because they were convinced that federal officials would end up violating it.
The centuries-old judicial principle of due process of law was destroyed when Congress enacted what are called asset-forfeiture laws, which are part of the decades-long federal effort to win the war on drugs, which is arguably the most failed, deadly, destructive, and racially bigoted government program in our nation’s history. More…
Civil Asset Forfeiture turns “innocent till proven guilty” on its head.
Neither main stream political party is trying to remove these egregious laws from the books. Who do these people actually represent?
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