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This Is Not a Revolution. It’s a Blueprint for Locking Down the Nation

John W. Whitehead
June 3rd, 2020
The Rutherford Institute
Comments (19)

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

“When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game. The establishment will irritate you—pull your beard, flick your face—to make you fight. Because once they’ve got you violent, then they know how to handle you.”—John Lennon

Brace yourselves.

There is something being concocted in the dens of power, far beyond the public eye, and it doesn’t bode well for the future of this country.

Anytime you have an entire nation so mesmerized by political theater and public spectacle that they are oblivious to all else, you’d better beware.

Anytime you have a government that operates in the shadows, speaks in a language of force, and rules by fiat, you’d better beware.

And anytime you have a government so far removed from its people as to ensure that they are never seen, heard or heeded by those elected to represent them, you’d better beware.

What is unfolding before us is not a revolution.

The looting, the burning, the rioting, the violence: this is an anti-revolution.

The protesters are playing right into the government’s hands because the powers-that-be want this. They want an excuse to lockdown the nation and throw the switch to all-out martial law. They want a reason to make the police state stronger.

It’s happening faster than we can keep up.

The Justice Department is deploying federal prison riot teams to various cities. More than half of the nation’s governors are calling on the National Guard to quell civil unrest. Growing numbers of cities, having just barely emerged from a coronavirus lockdown, are once again being locked down, this time in response to the growing upheaval.

This is how it begins.

It’s that dystopian 2030 Pentagon training video all over again, which anticipates the need for the government to institute martial law (use armed forces to solve domestic political and social problems) in order to navigate a world bedeviled by “criminal networks,” “substandard infrastructure,” “religious and ethnic tensions,” “impoverishment, slums,” “open landfills, over-burdened sewers,” a “growing mass of unemployed,” and an urban landscape in which the prosperous economic elite must be protected from the impoverishment of the have nots.

We’re way ahead of schedule.

The architects of the police state have us exactly where they want us: under their stamping boot, gasping for breath, desperate for freedom, grappling for some semblance of a future that does not resemble the totalitarian prison being erected around us.

This way lies certain tyranny.

For just one fleeting moment, “we the people” seemed united in our outrage over this latest killing of an unarmed man by a cop hyped up on his own authority and the power of his uniform.

That unity didn’t last.

Indeed, it didn’t take long—no surprise there—for us to quickly become divided again, polarized by the misguided fury and senseless violence of mobs taking to the streets, reeking of madness and mayhem.

Deliberately or not, the rioters have directed our attention away from the government’s crimes and onto their own.

This is a distraction.

Don’t allow yourself to be so distracted.

Let’s not lose sight of what started all of this in the first place: the U.S. government.

More than terrorism, more than domestic extremism, more than gun violence and organized crime, the systemic violence being perpetrated by agents of the government constitutes a greater menace to the life, liberty, and property of its citizens than any of the so-called dangers from which the government claims to protect us.

Case in point: George Floyd died at the hands of the American police state.

The callous, cold-blooded murder of the unarmed, 46-year-old black man by police is nothing new: for 8 minutes and 46 seconds, police knelt on Floyd’s neck while the man pleaded for his life, struggled to breathe, cried out for his dead mother, and finally passed out and died.

Floyd is yet another victim of a broken system of policing that has placed “we the people” at the mercy of militarized cops who have almost absolute discretion to decide who is a threat, what constitutes resistance, and how harshly they can deal with the citizens they were appointed to “serve and protect.”

Daily, Americans are being shot, stripped, searched, choked, beaten and tasered by police for little more than daring to frown, smile, question, challenge an order or just exist.

I’m talking about the growing numbers of unarmed people are who being shot and killed for just standing a certain way, or moving a certain way, or holding something—anything—that police could misinterpret to be a gun or igniting some trigger-centric fear in a police officer’s mind that has nothing to do with an actual threat to their safety.

Killed by police for standing in a “shooting stance.” Killed for holding a cell phone. Killed for holding a baseball bat. Killed for opening the front door. Killed for being a child in a car pursued by police. Killed for approaching police while holding a metal spoon. Killed for running in an aggressive manner while holding a tree branch. Killed for crawling around naked. Killed for hunching over in a defensive posture. Killed because a police officer accidentally fired his gun instead of his taser. Killed for wearing dark pants and a basketball jersey. Killed for reaching for his license and registration during a traffic stop. Killed for driving while deaf. Killed for being homeless. Killed for brandishing a shoehorn. Killed for peeing outdoors. Killed for having his car break down on the road. Killed for holding a garden hose.

Now you can make all kinds of excuses to justify these shootings, and in fact, that’s exactly what you’ll hear from politicians, police unions, law enforcement officials, and individuals who are more than happy to march in lockstep with the police. However, as these incidents make clear, the only truly compliant, submissive, and obedient citizen in a police state is a dead one.

Sad, isn’t it, how quickly we have gone from a nation of laws—where the least among us had just as much right to be treated with dignity and respect as the next person (in principle, at least)—to a nation of law enforcers (revenue collectors with weapons) who treat us all like suspects and criminals?

This is not how you keep the peace.

This is not justice. This is not even law and order.

This is certainly not freedom. This is the illusion of freedom.

Unfortunately, we are now being ruled by a government of psychopaths, scoundrels, spies, thugs, thieves, gangsters, ruffians, rapists, extortionists, bounty hunters, battle-ready warriors and cold-blooded killers who communicate using a language of force and oppression.

The facts speak for themselves.

We’re being ravaged by a government of ruffians, rapists, and killers. It’s not just the police shootings of unarmed citizens that are worrisome. It’s the SWAT team raids gone wrong that are leaving innocent citizens wounded, children terrorized and family pets killed. It’s the roadside strip searches—in some cases, cavity searches of men and women alike carried out in full view of the public—in pursuit of drugs that are never found. It’s the potentially lethal—and unwarranted—use of so-called “nonlethal” weapons such as tasers on children for “mouthing off to a police officer. For trying to run from the principal’s office. For, at the age of 12, getting into a fight with another girl.”

We’re being held at gunpoint by a government of soldiers—a standing army. While Americans are being made to jump through an increasing number of hoops in order to exercise their Second Amendment right to own a gun, the government is arming its own civilian employees to the hilt with guns, ammunition and military-style equipment, authorizing them to make arrests, and training them in military tactics. Among the agencies being supplied with night-vision equipment, body armor, hollow-point bullets, shotguns, drones, assault rifles, and LP gas cannons are the Smithsonian, U.S. Mint, Health and Human Services, IRS, FDA, Small Business Administration, Social Security Administration, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Education Department, Energy Department, Bureau of Engraving and Printing and an assortment of public universities. There are now reportedly more bureaucratic (non-military) government civilians armed with high-tech, deadly weapons than U.S. Marines. That doesn’t even begin to touch on the government’s arsenal, the transformation of local police into extensions of the military, and the speed with which the nation could be locked down under martial law depending on the circumstances. Clearly, the government is preparing for war—and a civil war, at that—and “we the people” are the perceived enemy.

We’re being taken advantage of by a government of scoundrels, idiots, and cowards. American satirist H.L. Mencken calculated that “Congress consists of one-third, more or less, scoundrels; two-thirds, more or less, idiots; and three-thirds, more or less, poltroons.” By and large, Americans seem to agree. When you’ve got government representatives who spend a large chunk of their work hours fundraising, being feted by lobbyists, shuffling through a lucrative revolving door between public service and lobbying, and making themselves available to anyone with enough money to secure access to a congressional office, you’re in the clutches of a corrupt oligarchy. Mind you, these same elected officials rarely read the legislation they’re enacting, nor do they seem capable of enacting much legislation that actually helps rather than hinders the plight of the American citizen.

We’re being locked up by a government of greedy jailers. We have become a carceral state, spending three times more on our prisons than on our schools and imprisoning close to a quarter of the world’s prisoners, despite the fact that crime is at an all-time low and the U.S. makes up only 5% of the world’s population. The rise of overcriminalization and profit-driven private prisons provides even greater incentives for locking up American citizens for such non-violent “crimes” as having an overgrown lawn.  As the Boston Review points out, “America’s contemporary system of policing, courts, imprisonment, and parole … makes money through asset forfeiture, lucrative public contracts from private service providers, and by directly extracting revenue and unpaid labor from populations of color and the poor. In states and municipalities throughout the country, the criminal justice system defrays costs by forcing prisoners and their families to pay for punishment. It also allows private service providers to charge outrageous fees for everyday needs such as telephone calls. As a result, people facing even minor criminal charges can easily find themselves trapped in a self-perpetuating cycle of debt, criminalization, and incarceration.”

We’re being spied on by a government of Peeping Toms. The government, aided by its corporate allies, is watching everything you do, reading everything you write, listening to everything you say, and monitoring everything you spend. Omnipresent surveillance is paving the way for government programs that profile citizens, document their behavior, and attempt to predict what they might do in the future, whether it’s what they might buy, what politician they might support, or what kinds of crimes they might commit. The impact of this far-reaching surveillance, according to Psychology Today, is “reduced trust, increased conformity, and even diminished civic participation.” As technology analyst Jillian C. York concludes, “Mass surveillance without due process—whether undertaken by the government of Bahrain, Russia, the US, or anywhere in between—threatens to stifle and smother that dissent, leaving in its wake a populace cowed by fear.”

We’re being forced to surrender our freedoms—and those of our children—to a government of extortionists, money launderers, and professional pirates. The American people have been repeatedly sold a bill of goods about how the government needs more money, more expansive powers, and more secrecy (secret courts, secret budgets, secret military campaigns, secret surveillance) in order to keep us safe. Under the guise of fighting its wars on terror, drugs, domestic extremism, pandemics, and civil unrest, the government has spent billions in taxpayer dollars on endless wars that have sown the seeds of blowback, surveillance programs that have subjected all Americans to a surveillance society, and militarized police that have turned communities into warzones.

We’re being robbed blind by a government of thieves. Americans no longer have any real protection against government agents empowered to seize private property at will. For instance, police agencies under the guise of asset forfeiture laws are taking property based on little more than a suspicion of criminal activity.

And we’re being forced to live in a perpetual state of emergency. From 9/11 through the COVID-19 lockdowns and now the threat of martial law in the face of growing civil unrest, we have witnessed the rise of an “emergency state” that justifies all manner of government tyranny and power grabs in the so-called name of national security.

Whatever else it may be—a danger, a menace, a threat—the U.S. government is certainly not looking out for our best interests, nor is it in any way a friend to freedom.

When the government views itself as superior to the citizenry, when it no longer operates for the benefit of the people, when the people are no longer able to peacefully reform their government, when government officials cease to act like public servants, when elected officials no longer represent the will of the people, when the government routinely violates the rights of the people and perpetrates more violence against the citizenry than the criminal class, when government spending is unaccountable and unaccounted for, when the judiciary act as courts of order rather than justice, and when the government is no longer bound by the laws of the Constitution, then you no longer have a government “of the people, by the people and for the people.”

What we have is a government of wolves.

Our backs are against the proverbial wall.

The government and its cohorts have conspired to ensure that the only real recourse the American people have to express their displeasure with the government is through voting, which is no real recourse at all.

The penalties for civil disobedience, whistleblowing, and rebellion are severe. If you refuse to pay taxes for government programs you believe to be immoral or illegal, you will go to jail. If you attempt to overthrow the government—or any agency thereof—because you believe it has overstepped its reach, you will go to jail. If you attempt to blow the whistle on government misconduct, there’s a pretty good chance you will go to jail.

For too long, the American people have obeyed the government’s dictates, no matter how extreme. We have paid its taxes, penalties, and fines, no matter how outrageous. We have tolerated its indignities, insults, and abuses, no matter how egregious. We have turned a blind eye to its indiscretions and incompetence, no matter how imprudent. We have held our silence in the face of its lawlessness, licentiousness, and corruption, no matter how illicit.

We have suffered.

How long we will continue to suffer depends on how much we’re willing to give up for the sake of freedom.

America’s founders provided us with a very specific explanation about the purpose of government and a roadmap for what to do when the government abuses its authority, ignores our objections, and establishes itself as a tyrant.

We must choose between peaceful slavery (in other words, maintaining the status quo in servitude to the police state) and dangerous freedom. That will mean carving out a path in which we begin to take ownership of our government, starting at the local level, challenging the status quo, and raising hell—nonviolently—whenever a government official steps out of line.

We can no longer maintain the illusion of freedom.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, we are at our most vulnerable right now.

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    Author: John W. Whitehead
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    Date: June 3rd, 2020
    Website: https://www.rutherford.org

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    19 Comments...

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    1. Anonymous says:

      Thank goodness it isn’t a revolution, I thought I might have to actually do something that involved more than a keyboard.

    2. cranerigger says:

      Rioters are giving the government an excuse for clamping down on our big cities. The Sage-of-the Senate, Senator John Kennedy (famous for identifying the Senate judiciary committee description as “AN INTERGALACTIC FREAK SHOW” rightfully stated that enforcing the rule of law is justified. I would add that policing the POLICE by the Legal System is also a necessary requirement.

      Another famous Senator John Kennedy quote is “we can’t see Nancy Pelosi’s view on election idiocy because WE JUST CAN’T GET OUR HEADS THAT FAR UP OUR REARENDS – to see the issue from her perspective.”

      If we don’t want to return to the stone-age, a Mad Max scenario, or perpetual war in our streets, we ought to consider his admonitions.

    3. Frank Thoughts says:

      The problem is this: the left and the hate-filled blacks are willing to do anything to exact their revenge on the American republic but the so-called ‘patriots’, mostly keyboard warriors, couldn’t muster the energy to defend the White House and Manhattan. They just let the hoodlums run wild and steal and burn buildings down.

      In a conflict, the side that believes in its vision the most and is willing to do anything, including kill, to achieve it, wins. We saw that in Vietnam. Most Americans couldn’t find Vietnam on a map but the Vietnamese sure as hell knew what they were fighting for. And they won in the end.

      Same goes in Iraq, Afghanistan. Americans are too lazy to defend what they have or fight for anything. And thus the hard left and the militant blacks will rule the agenda. They are willing to wreck things and kill to get what they want.

      All the technology is nothing if you are not willing to use power and enforce the civil order.

    4. Darth Skippy says:

      Some people fought under the banner of a red or white rose, at the pleasure of kings.

      h ttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flower_war

      Others, under the protection of fierce, totemic animals.

      Still others, under demigods, like comic book characters.

      Us, over pigs and monkeys.

    5. Andrea.Iravani. says:

      If it was just the government that acted that way, this problem could be solvec PDQ. Unfortunately, it is not just the government, it is the corporations, as well as many of the citizens that are short – sighted and perfectly content to sacrifice liberty for short term monetary gains in the stock market. Those are the people that financed the government’s ability to do this, and they are nothing but half-witted fools that have colluded to engage in the looting, violence, and enslavement of Americans, which will inevitably include their descendants.

      They don’t care. Why worry about what happens after they die seems to be their philosophy.

      Corruption is the number one problem in America!

      The stock market is a terrorist network. It has been proven over and over and over again!

      Abolish it!

      -Andrea Iravani

      • Andrea.Iravani. says:

        My guess is that Americans are even more concerned about their employers and former employers spying on them than the government. Not that they are ok with the government spying on them, but that more people feel that their employers and former employers are spying on them. This corporate spying on employees dates back to Henry Ford, who had an obsession with spying on employees and hired secret agents to make sure that employees were not drinking in bars. It is a situation of Stolkholm syndrome. It is nearly impossible to prove, and in the event that it is somehow proven, do they turn their employer in lose their job? The people that usually want to make sure that someone is not talking about them are probably people that that person knows,  or have have committed crimes against that person, which is why they are so paranoid that they spy on someone, and then maybe report someone to the government to based on a false allegation to destroy someone. With a secret FISA court, it is impossible to defend against the accusation, or even know what the accusation is. Those are criminal acts of high crimes and treason which benefit the evil and illegal predator class.

      • Panther says:

        We have way too many people that never had to earn a living. We have too many people that earn a living and have to pay for those that won’t . Then we have the people who tell us that if we don’t pay for those who won’t pay for themselves, then somehow they’re racist bigots and such and we’re forced into modern day slavery. The people who won’t do for themselves now bite the very hand that feeds them. Crazy shit, crazy times.

        Stay quiet Be smart

        • Andrea.Iravani. says:

          The Israeli Torah scholars? Yeah, it pisses me off too that Americans send all of that money to Israel just so that people can just read the Torah all day too when there is so much poverty in America! If wealthy American Jews feel like sending their own money there for people to read the Torah, that is ok, but we should not all have to pay for wealthy welfare recipients in Israel.

    6. floyd was a drug dealer. no hero. good riddance

      • B-17 says:

        And PASSING CONTERFIT BILLS !!!!

      • Operation Garden Plot says:

        lol. Imagine using a spent criminal history as a way to justify a public execution by the State? Might want to remove your tongue from that boot, chum.

        A man was essentially executed for using counterfeit money, which is a sad, tragic irony considering the ecomony’s fake anyway. Educate yourself.

        Pray you never commit a non-violent crime and the State deems you unfit to live.

    7. Okay, I am a political novice, a newbie. What I don’t understand it, why throw people out of work for any reason, lock down or whatever?

      When people are employed, they are happy, they have money to spend and cash is flowing to the big corporations. They are not paying attention to any bad stuff behind the scenes or to anyone in the open. “Oh, someone got killed, well, that doesn’t hurt me, I’m paying my bills and buying stuff. Life is good! Don’t pay attention to the man behind the curtain. Nothing to see, move it along.”

      If almost everyone is out of work, there is no money to spend and people are desperate, looking for answers and saviors, and rebelling and so forth, Yeah, this gives an excuse to crack down on everyone, but then everyone is unhappy. They have no money, can’t buy anything, how does that help the big corporations and/or the evil plutocrats when the economy is tanked?

      I just don’t understand how making the populace suffer helps the people in charge stay in charge. The Romans tried to make the people happy with bread and circuses towards the end because when the people were not happy, they were restive and threatening the rulers.

      Even if this lasts for decades, it eventually fails, like it did in Romania. People finally had had enough and overthrew the rulers. Unfortunately, the new rulers of Romania don’t seem to be much better than the old ones but it seemed, to me, the civilians finally said enough is enough.

      Of course, I will play devil’s advocate here and give heed to the idea that the “civilians” were probably shills and acting on behalf of the over throwers. But, when someone says stuff like this to me and it gets too shrill, I stop and walk away because I can’t prove anything…either!…any more than that other person can, and there is no point in continuing the conversation.

      When someone says the deep state or the Illuminati or the Masons or WHO or the United Nations or Bill Gates or Hillary or 5G, ad nauseam, I no longer pay attention to anything they say and walk away.

      • cranerigger says:

        “Mad Dog” is a Demonrat and their pursuit of power trumps (Forgive the double meaning) any convention that cabinet-members-that-resign should refrain from severe criticism for the remainder of that term. POWER is the Demonrat God. Semper Fidelis, I’m very disappointed in the ex-Sec Def.

        • HaHaHa says:

          Mattis a Democrat? That’s pretty funny, but I know how you must hate anyone criticizing the Dear Leader so you have to rebrand them rather than face the truth. Thankfully there are fewer and fewer Vichy Republicans like you.

        • Anonymous says:

          From what I’ve heard of Mattis, virtually everyone who’s ever served under him respects him. I’m sure his ranks are filled with people on both sides of the aisle (duopoly). I’m neither an R nor a D – when all’s said and done the real owners that you’ll never see, laugh at the people who think America is a democracy or that their “vote counts”.

          Another figurehead comes in every 4 years. That’s it.

    8. Frank Thoughts says:

      This is a great opportunity to finally liberate black people from white oppression and rule and so we should take it. America needs to be divided into separate lands as follows:

      1) The free slave land for blacks comprising Abraham Lincoln’s promised land mass (40 acres and a mule). All blacks must then reside there.

      2) A new confederation of lands for Native Americans settling an historic injustice and as compensation for the genocide waged against them by the American state.

      3) A New America: the remaining territory to be for a white-Asian-Latino population based on the historic ‘capital’ built by these visiting races in the old America project.

      This solution would resolve historic injustices, free blacks from ever having to be under the whip hand of whites, address the injustices to Native Americans and give compensation to the visiting races for their efforts since the founding of the US. At some point New America could consider merging or federating with Canada and Mexico much like the EU in Europe. As for New Africa, it could federate with African nations and the Caribbean and build black solidarity in some form.

      • cranerigger says:

        No person alive today had anything to do with the forced removal of my Cherokee ancestors. Restitution to native Americans is as idiotic as restitution to Blacks. I repeat no person alive today had anything to do with that. Think through the problem and consider descendants on both sides of the issue that have ridiculously low percentages of problem-related-ancestry (From any partisan side).

        Any study of history shows one group or another conquered areas of land. Go back hundreds-of-thousands of years and who were the first squatters on the land? Do we owe their descendants restitution? Slavery exists in some parts of the world today. It dates back to ancient times. How could anyone sort it out?