Category: Malfeasance

EXPOSED: The Great Money Fiction

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The immemorial myth that money and wealth are the same… Why economists prefer inflation to deflation…
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Amendment 4 is Back in Court as Florida Fights Our Victory Over its Modern-Day Poll Tax

Betty Riddle, a grandmother and university graduate, stood in line to vote for the first time in her life in Florida’s 2020 presidential primary. Marq Mitchell, a peer support specialist and advocate, also proudly voted for his first time in March. Jeff Gruver, a local activist for people experiencing homelessness, is yet another of our clients who cast his vote and finally had a say in our democracy earlier this year.  It is on their behalf, and on behalf of all returning citizens’ behalf across Florida, that we return to court this month to fight for their access to the…

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“Hell Is Truth Seen Too Late”

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A warning for the United States from Thomas Hobbes… The false miracle of the Keynesian multiplier…
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Tracking Apps are Unlikely to Help Stop COVID-19

Proposals to use the tracking capabilities of our cell phones to help fight COVID-19 have probably received more attention than any other technology issue during the pandemic. Here at the ACLU, we have been skeptical of schemes to use apps for contact tracing or exposure warnings from the beginning, but it is clearer than ever that such tools are unlikely to work, and that the debate over such tracking is largely a sideshow to the principal coronavirus health needs.  We have said from the outset that location-based contact tracing was untenable, but that the concept of “proximity tracking” — in…

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Retired Federal Probation Officer: Stop Sending People to COVID-Filled Prisons Unnecessarily

In early April, the Rikers Island jail complex in New York City suffered its first coronavirus death: Michael Tyson. Mr. Tyson, 53, had been arrested in late February not because he had committed a crime, but for a technical violation of his parole. As a retired federal probation officer, I can tell you that incarcerating someone for a technical rule violation should be a last resort. But during a pandemic, it should be ceased completely. Our federal, state, and local probation and parole systems should act immediately to protect public health and safety and choose alternatives to unnecessary incarceration. For 22 years…

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Clemency, Redemption, and Justice: A Personal Story

In 1998, at the age of 21, I was sentenced to life without parole plus 320 years for drug-related offenses that were committed mostly in my teens. In 1998, 16 years into my sentence, I received clemency from President Obama after writing a letter to him asking for forgiveness, asking for mercy, asking for understanding that I wasn’t a bad kid, just a kid who made a bad decision. That I wasn’t that person who roamed those streets long ago or the same person who stood in front of the judge and received a life sentence, and as a result I…

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From Punishment to Promise: The Power of Redemption

My view of the American system of justice is clear — it is overly punitive and in need of correction. My opinion is anything but armchair analysis. I came to this conclusion through my time as a prosecutor — most notably in the case of Cyntoia Brown. Cyntoia was sentenced to more than five decades in prison at the age of 16 for killing a man who she believed was drawing a gun to shoot her. At the time of her sentencing, I believed this punishment was just — but upon reflection, I later advocated for her application for clemency, which…

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In Pompeo’s New Hierarchy of Rights, Religion and Property, Not Humans, Are at the Top

The Trump administration is advocating for a new hierarchy of rights that would elevate religion and property over basic human rights. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is leading this dangerous endeavor through his Commission on Unalienable Rights, which published a 60-page draft report and initiated a two week public comment period following the proposal. Sec. Pompeo then delivered a preposterous speech to support the ideological initiative. The commission and its glossy report are designed to lend a veneer of legitimacy to an endeavor that is both dangerous and a waste of taxpayer money — at a time when the government should…

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ACLU Seeks Information on Government’s Aerial Surveillance of Protesters

In the midst of nationwide protests against police brutality, local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies have reacted with brutal force and widespread surveillance. Not only are many agencies suppressing protest and intimidating protestors with batons and tear gas on the ground — they are also circling overhead. The government is using a deeply invasive, coordinated aerial surveillance campaign to monitor Black Lives Matter protests, gather information, and surveil people exercising their First Amendment rights.   Today, we submitted Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the Federal Aviation Administration, Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Justice calling…

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Undocumented Youth Won on DACA, but Trump’s a Sore Loser. So What’s Next?

After a rebuke from the Supreme Court, President Trump is again trying to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program — a program that protects over 700,000 people from deportation and allows them to work and attend school in the United States, their home. The White House is replacing the full DACA program with a skeleton program that will accept no new applicants and renew protection for only one year, instead of two. I served in the Obama administration at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the government agency responsible for creating and launching DACA. It was the result of over…

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The China Myth, Exposed

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Jim Rickards shows you why China’s economy is a house of cards and remains stuck in the “middle income” trap…
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