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asset forfeiture, banks, banking, IRS,TIGTA, Bank Secrecy Act

What’s Being Forfeited

What do you call those who prey upon the innocent, illegally snatching their money? Thieves? Muggers? The Mob? Government. Last month, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) issued a report on the Internal Revenue Service’s use of civil asset forfeiture against Americans accused — well, not accused .






Ferguson, body camera, lapel camera, video, vote, election, police

Ferguson Finally Wins

Yesterday, on the 49th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination,* voters in Ferguson, Missouri, passed a charter amendment requiring police to wear body cameras while on duty. The measure also provides the public access to that footage, along with reasonable rules about privacy. In August 2014, Ferguson came to the






Civil Asset Forfeiture, crime, drugs, marijuana, stealing, theft, police abuse

Good and Bad News

On the issue of “civil asset forfeiture” — police seizing property from folks merely on suspicion, without a criminal conviction — there is good news. In Idaho, House Bill 202a just passed both legislative chambers overwhelmingly. “Among other changes, HB 202a would no longer allow civil forfeiture of the vehicle






body camera, police, abuse, civil rights, obstruction, brutality

Public Record

Police departments nationwide have begun to outfit their on-duty officers with body cameras. These small recording devices make great sense, so we can better judge police encounters. And it turns out that not only do police behave better when wearing body cameras, so do the citizens with whom they interact.*






Muslims, Islam, Sharia law, Netherlands, Dutch, Theo Van Gogh, terrorism, immigration, Europe

Walk on the Wilders Side?

The Dutch were among the first to witness Islamic extremist violence against free speech. The November 2004 murder of Theo van Gogh by a Dutch citizen of Moroccan descent — a man whose first name, Mohammed, almost no one thinks is merely coincidental — stirred the nation. And the world.






Ferguson, Michael Brown, body camera, police, lapel camera, rights, accountability, abuse

Five for Ferguson

Michael Brown is dead. No video can bring him back. As the world remembers, Brown was the unarmed 18-year-old black man killed in a violent 2014 altercation with Officer Darren Wilson, who is white — making Ferguson, Missouri, famous. Or rather, infamous. With little information, folks quickly picked sides. Some






Arkansas, Jon Woods, corruption, crime, Micah Neal, term limits

Another Political Crook

Last week, the other shoe dropped. When last we touched upon Arkansas state legislator Micah Neal, he had pled guilty to steering hundreds of thousands of state tax dollars to a small private college in exchange for big, fat bribes. He also implicated the state’s No. 1 term limits opponent,






Charles Murray, protest, violence, free speech, Bell Curve, students, intimidation

Campus Freedom in Peril

What is the percentage of tenured faculty on American campuses who are still unambiguously on the side of free intellectual exchange? What is the percentage of them who are willing to express that position openly? Sociologist Charles Murray asked those questions near the end of his reflections on Thursday’s Middlebury






By any means necessary, BAMN, protest, free speech, fascist, first amendment, censorship, violence

Wolves Crying Wolf

People have a right to defend themselves. Right? Especially against rape and murder. “This is not about free speech,” Yvette Felarca yelled to the crowd at the University of California-Berkeley, gathered weeks ago to “shut down” a scheduled speech by Milo Yiannopoulos, the controversial Breitbart editor. Felarca, a national organizer






civil asset forfeiture, forfeiture, police, abuse, theft, Trump, corruption, incentives, illustration, money, cops

Watcha Gonna Do?

At a White House meeting last week between President Trump and law enforcement officials, a Texas sheriff raised a concern about legislation introduced by a state senator to require a conviction before police could take someone’s property. Mr. Trump asked for that senator’s name, adding, “We’ll destroy his career.” The






Henry Louis Mencken, Black bloc, Antifa, protest, terrorist, violence, Milo Yiannopoulis, Gavin McInnes

God Knows You’re Good

“The trouble with fighting for human freedom,” wrote H. L. Mencken, “is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels.” Henry Louis Mencken (1880 – 1956), master prose stylist and social critic, knew whereof he wrote. But he also penned things to which few would give their hearty assent.






Berkeley, Milo, violence, speech, politics, photos, comment, analysis

The Silence of Violence

“The Free Speech Movement is dead.” So said the Berkeley College Republicans after violence Wednesday night forced cancelation of a sold-out speech by Milo Yiannopoulos, the Greek-born British author, now a senior editor at Breitbart News. The reference, of course, is to the University of California’s history as a haven






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