Homeland Theater

MS-13 gang makes US 'criminal organization' list

Mara Salvatrucha, the Salvadoran street gang that got its start in the heart of Los Angeles' Koreatown, has been officially designated by federal authorities as a "transnational criminal organization." MS-13, as it's also known, "is being targeted for its involvement in serious transnational criminal activities, including drug trafficking, kidnapping, human smuggling, sex trafficking, murder, assassinations, racketeering, blackmail, extortion, and immigration offenses," the US Department of the Treasury stated. That means the federal government can use "economic sanctions" against the gang, which has also established a foothold in El Salvador. The designation gives the Treasury Department the power to freeze any financial assets from the gang or its members and prohibits financial institutions from engaging in any transactions with members of the group. 

The Republicans are the party of white supremacy: deal with it

Global domination and corporate power are obviously inextricably linked to white supremacy, and certainly the prior two rose along with the last. But the three no longer form the seamless unity they did even a generation ago. This is what those on the left who repeat like a mantra that there is "no difference" between Romney and Obama don't seem to get. We have pointed out before Mitt Romney's use of coded messages to play to the racist vote while still maintaining  a veil (however diaphanous) of plausible deniability. Among his supporters at the GOP convention in Tampa last month, the veil was sometimes not there at all. Note this enlightening litany from the Washington Post, Aug. 29:

Oops, did we say 'anarchist'? We meant 'Republican'...

Oh, look at this. Without much explanation, media reports all asserted that an "anarchist militia" had been discovered within the military, that was plotting to assassinate Obama and overthrow the government. (CNN, Fox News, Aug. 28; Reuters, AP, Aug. 27) Based out of Fort Stewart, Ga., the "militia" was apparently called FEAR—Forever Enduring Always Ready—although it is unclear if it really had enough members or weaponry to qualify as a "militia." The supposed plot came to light when Pfc. Michael Burnett pleaded guilty to killing a fellow soldier and his girlfriend because they were suspected of planning to rat out the "militia." Three others are charged in the murders, but note that nobody is yet charged with plotting to kill Obama, overthrow the government or poison the Washington state apple harvest (another of their wet-dreams, it seems).  Now Gawker brings to light that the alleged ringleader in the plot, Pvt. Isaac Aguigui, had served a a page at the 2008 GOP convention!

Arizona gov issues order denying benefits to undocumented immigrants

Arizona's Gov. Jan Brewer issued an executive order on Aug. 15 that instructs state agencies not to provide driver's licenses and other public benefits to undocumented immigrants who have gained the right to work under a new federal program known as Deferred Action. Brewer's executive order rebuffs the Deferred Action program, a recent Obama administration policy that allows undocumented immigrants who served in the armed forces or have graduated high school, came to the US at a young age and are under 30 not to be deported. In her executive order, Brewer argued that the Deferred Action program does not grant legal status to undocumented immigrants and that she is enforcing current state law that denies public benefits to these immigrants:

Montana high court approves ballot initiative on corporate personhood

The Supreme Court of Montana on Aug. 10 ruled that its state's November ballots may include Initiative 166, a nonbinding policy statement that would direct the state's congress to support an amendment to the US Constitution asserting that corporations are not people and money does not qualify as speech. The goal of the endeavor is to counteract the 2010 US Supreme Court decision of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which allows corporations to spend and contribute unlimited and unrestricted money in political campaigns. The court's majority made clear, however, that its decision was limited only to whether the initiative complied with constitutional requirements regarding its proper submission to electors, and that it did not consider the "substantive legality of the issue, if approved by voters." The dissent echoed this distinction, labeling Initiative 166 as "simply a feel-good exercise exhibiting contempt for the federal government and, particularly, the US Supreme Court."

Sikh massacre: fascism is not a mental illness

The Aug. 6 massacre of six worshippers at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wis. is revealing in its reactions from across the spectrum, but let's start with Mitt Romney. The media have noted his embarrassing blooper of confusing the words "Sikh" and "sheikh," but failed to note that the very quote in which he made the gaffe was not merely ignorant but insidiously sinister. Here it is: "We had a moment of silence in honor of the people who lost their lives at that sheik temple. I noted that it was a tragedy for many, many reasons. Among them are the fact that people, the sheik people, are among the most peaceable and loving individuals you can imagine, as is their faith." (AP, Aug. 7) Right, as opposed to those dirty you-know-whos. Numerous commentators (mostly on the left, natch) have pointed out that the emphasis on the fact that Sikhs aren't Muslims sometimes comes close to implying that violent attacks on Muslims would be OK. Romney's subtext is clearly that the Sikhs are good, domesticated wogs that white America can tolerate, while those bad Muslims have got it coming, because their faith is not "peaceable and loving."

'Anarchist literature' sought in Portland raids

The FBI served search warrants at three homes in Portland. Ore. early July 25 as part of an "ongoing violent crime" investigation, according to agency spokesperson Beth Anne Steele. "The warrants are sealed, and I anticipate they will remain sealed," Steele said. Some residents in the area of Northeast Alberta Street were awakened to the sound of a helicopter circling overhead as some 80 agents from the FBI and local Joint Terrorism Task Force raided the homes, using flash grenades according to witnesses. No arrests have been made, but computers and other personal items were confiscated. Grand jury subpoenas were also issued to five individuals in Portland, Olympia, and Seattle. Local media reports suggest the case is related to "Black Bloc" protests in Seattle on May Day of this year. A photo of one of the search warrants was posted on IndyBay, showing that agents were seeking "anti-government or anarchist literature" as well as black clothing, paint and other items. (OregonianIndyBay, Green is the New Red, July 25)

Supreme Court partially strikes down Arizona immigration law

The US Supreme Court on June 25 ruled 5-3 that three provisions of Arizona's controversial immigration law, SB 1070, are preempted by federal law but upheld the most controversial provision. In Arizona v. United States, four specific provisions of the law were at issue: Section 2(B), which requires police officers to check the immigration status of anyone whom they arrest and allows police to stop and arrest anyone whom they believe to be an illegal immigrant; Section 3, which makes it a crime for someone even to be in the state without valid immigration papers; Section 5(C), which makes it a crime to apply for or hold a job in Arizona without proper papers; and Section 6, which gives a police officer the power to arrest an individual, without a warrant, whom the officer believes has committed a crime that could cause him or her to be deported, no matter where the crime may have occurred. In his opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy found that sections 3, 5(C) and 6 intruded in areas reserved for the federal government:

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