Can’t Find Any of 12 Million Illegals, but Can Track Every Overseas Account Holder

The hypocrisy of this is just so spectacular, I have to point to it:

I’ve lost the pointer to why I was looking at this… some article somewhere sent me down this rabbit hole…

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foreign_Account_Tax_Compliance_Act

FATCA is the acronym. What is it? Essentially it requires every single banking entity in the world to report to the U.S. I.R.S. on every single account holder who is of U.S. origin. The USA wants to track 100% of U.S. citizens everywhere in the world, but can’t be bothered to find any illegal aliens living in the USA. The hypocrisy, it burns…

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) is a 2010 United States federal law to enforce the requirement for United States persons including those living outside the U.S. to file yearly reports on their non-U.S. financial accounts to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN). It requires all non-U.S. (foreign) financial institutions (FFIs) to search their records for indicia indicating U.S. person-status and to report the assets and identities of such persons to the U.S. Department of the Treasury. The FATCA was the revenue-raising portion of the 2010 domestic jobs stimulus bill, the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act, and was enacted as Subtitle A (sections 501 through 541) of Title V of that law.

So a “jobs bill” has as a key portion, mandating what foreign banks must do, and assuring no penny escapes US control. Sheesh. And folks wonder why the voters are fed up with the crap from D.C. and want Trump to just go trash it. Please, keep telling me how horrible he is and how much he will break things and do damage and “doesn’t know how Washington works”. It is music to my ears.

I’m going to quote the “criticisms” part in toto as the size has an impact all on its own. I’ve bolded some bits.

Criticism

Certain aspects of FATCA have been a source of controversy in the financial and general press. The Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Tax Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Treasury stated in September 2013 that the controversies were incorrect (myths). The controversy primarily relates to several central issues:

Cost. Robert Stack provided the Treasury position that “Treasury and the IRS have designed our regulations in a way that minimizes administrative burdens and related costs.” Estimates of the additional revenue raised seemed to be heavily outweighed by the cost of implementing the legislation. In March 2012 the Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists (ACFCS) said FATCA was expected to raise revenues of approximately US$800 million per year for the U.S. Treasury with the costs of implementation more difficult to estimate. ACFCS claimed it was extremely likely that the cost of implementing FATCA, borne by the foreign financial institutions would far outweigh the revenues raised by the U.S. Treasury, even excluding the additional costs to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service for the staffing and resources needed to process the data produced. Contrary to established congressional practice, FATCA was not subject to a cost/benefit analysis by the Committee on Ways and Means. Perhaps not considered by Congress, the cost to the global financial institutions to implement FATCA has been reported to be range from Forbes’ estimate of US$8 billion a year, (approximately ten times the amount of estimated revenue raised) US$200 billion (based on per capita costs for Australia and the UK), to 1-2 trillion USD (chapter of the Chamber of Commerce)

Benefits versus cost. The intention of locating U.S. persons and their non-U.S. financial accounts was to increase tax revenues from the interest, dividends, and gains of those assets. The majority of assets located was expected be the international equivalent of standard checking and savings accounts, where the applicable interest was less than 0.5% during 2015. The majority of that income is already (by tax treaty) attributable to the country where it resides. (IRS form 1116 is normally used to credit foreign taxes upon passive income). Another source of revenue where FATCA intends to raise revenue is in the identification of a wider population of U.S. persons. However, the majority (82%) of U.S. persons filing owe no tax to U.S. (due to tax treaties).

Find EVERY SINGLE US CITIZEN GLOBALLY, but can’t find non-US Citizens inside the USA…

Possible capital flight. The primary mechanism for enforcing the compliance of foreign financial institutions is a punitive withholding levy on U.S. assets which the Economist speculated in 2011 might create an incentive for foreign financial institutions to divest or not invest in U.S. assets, resulting in capital flight. When implementing FATCA, Congress did not publish the source of the revenue data, neither had it performed a cost/benefit analysis.

Relevance. United States does not have a wealth tax or any other tax upon financial assets. Without a tax upon wealth, it is questioned as to why wealth is required to be reported.

Fairness. Residents of the United States have not, in general, been required to report their financial assets to the Internal Revenue Service. Non-residents are required to report asset values.

Foreign relations. Forcing foreign financial institutions and foreign governments to collect data on U.S. persons at their own expense and transmit it to the IRS has been called divisive. Canada’s former Finance Minister Jim Flaherty raised an issue with this “far reaching and extraterritorial implications” which would require Canadian banks to become extensions of the IRS and would jeopardize Canadians’ privacy rights. There are also reports of many foreign banks refusing to open accounts for Americans, making it harder for Americans to live and work abroad.

Extraterritoriality. Robert Stack of the IRS said that extraterritoriality was incorrect (a myth) “FATCA has received considerable international support because most foreign governments recognize how effective FATCA, and in particular our intergovernmental approach, will be in detecting and combating tax evaders” The legislation enables U.S. authorities to impose regulatory costs, and potentially penalties, on foreign financial institutions who otherwise have few if any dealings with the United States. The U.S. has sought to ameliorate that criticism by offering reciprocity to potential countries who sign intergovernmental agreements, but the idea of the U.S. Government providing information on its citizens to foreign governments has also proved controversial. The law’s interference in the relationship between individual Americans or dual nationals and non-American banks led Georges Ugeux to term it “bullying and selfish.” The Economist called FATCA’s “extraterritoriality stunning even by Washington’s standards.”

Differentiation by national origin and discrimination. In each country of the world, those residents which are suspected to be U.S. citizens are separated out at their financial institutions for differential treatment, based upon their place of birth and nationality. Discrimination according to national origin is prohibited in most countries.
For example, Article 14 of The European Convention on Human Rights specifies “Prohibition of discrimination: The enjoyment of the rights and freedoms set forth in this Convention shall be secured without discrimination on any ground such as … national or social origin, association with a national minority, property, birth or other status.” Those suspected to be of U.S. nationality are treated differently than any of the other residents. Few precedents exist in the last 70 years, where any particular nationality has been searched out to be identified strictly by virtue of nationality., Previous identifications by national characteristic have only occurred within regions. Other global instances have not been identified.

Effect on “accidental Americans”. The reporting requirements and penalties apply to all U.S. citizens, including accidental Americans, those who are unaware that they have U.S. citizenship. Since the U.S. considers all persons born in the U.S., and most foreign-born persons with American parents, to be citizens, FATCA affects a large number of foreign residents, who are unaware that the U.S. considers them citizens.

Effects on non-Americans. Persons who are not U.S. residents and are not U.S. persons and do not share accounts with U.S. persons still must self-certify said status when opening a bank account outside the U.S. at any FFI. According to the FATCA IGA, if such a person does not self-certify said status, that person cannot open a bank account at that institution. Canada and United Kingdom have interpreted the IGA’s differently and believe that non-U.S. persons who fail to self-certify shall not be refused a bank account. However, non-co-operating non-U.S. persons shall be FATCA reported in the same way as those persons who have U.S. indicia.

Citizenship renunciations.
Robert Stack of the IRS presented the administration’ IRS position that renunciation due to FATCA are incorrect (a myth), because: “FATCA provisions impose no new obligations on U.S. citizens living abroad.” The statement ignores the FATCA self-certification processes and filings of form 8938. The U.S. State Department admits that the rise of renunciation figures are related to U.S. taxation policy. The State Department acknowledged the rise in relinquishments and renouncements, and expects them to rise further in the future.

In 2013, Time magazine reported a sevenfold increase in Americans renouncing U.S. citizenship between 2008 and 2011, attributing this at least in part to FATCA. According to BBC Magazine, the act is one of the reasons for a surge of Americans renouncing their citizenship—a rise from 189 people in Q2/2012 to 1,131 in Q2/2013. Another surge in renunciations in 2013 to record levels was reported in the news media, with FATCA cited as a factor in the decision of many of the renunciants. According to the legal website International Tax Blog, the number of Americans giving up U.S. citizenship started to increase dramatically in 2010 and rose to 2,999 in 2013, almost 6-fold the average level of the previous decade. The trend has continued in 2014 with 3415 people reported by the Federal Register as having giving up citizenship or Long-term residency.

In 2014 Forbes wrote, that the numbers of those renouncing their citizenship are understated. According to a survey reported by Forbes, “5.5 million Americans eye giving up U.S. citizenship”. There are serious differences between the figures cited by the Federal Register (which include renunciations, relinquishments, and loss of long-term resident (green-card) status to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System gun control database (“NICS”) which only contain renunciations. Whereas the Federal Register stated that 3,415 people renounced or relinquished their citizenship or long-term residence, the IRS stated that 1,100 people renounced citizenship at only one particular U.S. consulate during the first ten months of 2014. This contradicted prior claims that such statistics are not maintained at the consulates.

FY2015: The State Department estimated 5,986 renunciants and 559 relinquishers during FY2015 This is despite the 422% hike in renunciation and relinquishment fees where the FY2015 data was released to the public.

It would seem it now costs a few $Thousand to stop being a U.S. Citizen and stop being financially terrorized when abroad… As my spouse holds Irish citizenship and I qualify for British, we have pondered moving to the UK or Ireland for a few years in retirement. This makes that painful. While there, should we do it and like it, I might well join the ranks of those paying a few $Thousand to get rid of my obnoxious Uncle Sam… (Dear I.R.S.: Please note that no one in my family, including me and my spouse, have any money overseas in any financial institution at all. For me, this “ick” is at present purely hypothetical.)

American citizens living abroad. According to CBC.cain January 2014, many Americans living abroad might face large fines as a result of this legislation. According to Time in 2013 magazine, American citizens living abroad would be unable to open foreign bank accounts. The Wall Street Journal reported in July 2014 that “FATCA worsens the already profoundly unjust tax treatment of millions of middle-class Americans living abroad.” “FATCA rules were intended to correct a tax loophole. Applied to Americans living abroad, they are absurd.” The Guardian reports that Americans living abroad feel financially terrorized by FATCA requirements. According to research by Democrats Abroad: “These survey results show the intense impact FATCA is having on overseas Americans. Their financial accounts are being closed, their relationships with their non-American spouses are under strain, some Americans are being denied promotion or partnership in business because of FATCA reporting requirements and some are planning or contemplating renouncing their U.S. citizenship.” Robert Stack stated the IRS position that “FATCA withholding applies to the U.S. investments of FFIs whether or not they have U.S. account holders, so turning away known U.S. account holders will not enable an FFI to avoid FATCA.”

Lack of reciprocity. Regarding reciprocity from USA, the model IGA states: “The Parties are committed to working with Partner Jurisdictions and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development on adapting the terms of this Agreement and other agreements between the United States and Partner Jurisdictions to a common model for automatic exchange of information, including the development of reporting and due diligence standards for financial institutions.” There is no U.S. legislation to allow reciprocity. The president’s budget for year 2014 included a proposal to allow the Treasury Secretary to collect information which could be used for FATCA reciprocity. The proposal stated that its intent was to “would facilitate such intergovernmental cooperation by enabling the IRS to reciprocate in appropriate circumstances”, however the proposal did not request to allow the Secretary to have further transmittal authority. The president’s federal budget proposals of 2014, 2015 and 2016 did not list either costs or revenues for reciprocity implementation in any of the coming 10 years—thus assuming that this collection was either cost neutral or, more logically it would be interpreted as to not be budgeted in any of the coming 10 years. The President’s FY2014 budget was not enacted, rather a different version was passed. The President’s FY2015 budget was defeated in the House of Representatives on a vote of 2-413. The President’s FY2016 budget was defeated in the Senate on a vote of 0-97.

Reciprocity not authorized by Congress. FATCA as implemented by Congress included no mention of reciprocity. FATCA as being implemented with the Executive Branch’s IGA implementation has made reciprocity promises to foreign governments.

The FATCA IGA is no treaty under U.S. law. A treaty requires two thirds consent in the U.S, Senate in order to become applicable in U.S. law. The applicability of IGA’s is being challenged in U.S. court. The plaintiffs state that the IGA’s are not valid Executive Agreements. The IGA documents are all signed by officials lower than the President. Philippines has delayed FATCA data transmittal, citing that the IGA “Treaty” has not yet been ratified by the U.S. Senate.

IRS not ready. According to The New York Times, it is unclear whether the IRS is ready to handle millions of new complicated filings per year. On May 2, 2014, the IRS issued Notice 2014-33 providing that 2014 and 2015 will be regarded as a transition period for purposes of enforcement and administration relating to entity but not individual investors.

Complexity. Doubts have been expressed as to workability of FATCA due to its complexity, and the legislative timetable for implementation has already been pushed back twice. According to U.S. national tax advocate Nina Olsen in regards to FATCA: “This is a piece of legislation that is so big and so far-reaching, and [has] so many different moving pieces, and is rolling out in an incremental fashion (…) that you really won’t be able to know what its consequences are, intended or otherwise,’ Olson said. “I don’t think we’ll know that for years. And by that point we’ll actually be a little too late to go, “Oops, my bad, we shouldn’t have done this,’ and then try to unwind it.” Bloomberg reported in 2015 that the IRS help center is not able to provide adequate taxpayer customer service.

Identity theft. The IRS reports that identity thieves are using fraudulent compliance requests as a “phishing” ruse to obtain sensitive account-holder information. As of April, 2015, more than 150,000 financial institutions throughout the world are storing social security numbers and asset values of U.S. citizens.

Account Closures. Due to the costs and complexity of implementing this legislation, many banks have been excluding U.S. persons from holding financial accounts at their institutions. These closures, based upon ethnic characteristics, have not been halted by government authorities. In fact, the E.U. had validated the practice of closure based upon ethnic characteristics, by stating “Banks have the right, under the contractual freedom principle, to decide with whom they want to contract. They can in any event refuse clients for sound commercial reasons.” These closures are despite that those countries who have signed intergovernmental agreements, had also promised to not close the accounts of U.S. persons.

Additional Complexity for U.S. Persons U.S. Persons were already forbidden by the Securities Act of 1933 to make investments in U.S. Securities at banks which are not certified inside U.S.A. by the Securities and Exchange Commission. This disallows U.S. persons from participating in any product which may contain U.S. investment products. If a financial institution is not able to segregate non-U.S. investments from other investment products, a bank may place a total ban upon U.S. persons using their investment products. Since non-U.S. institutions located outside U.S.A. cannot acquire sufficient competence of U.S. law, non-U.S. institutions often find no exemption allowing resident U.S. persons to purchase any financial products from their institution.

Security. As piracy, kidnapping, and global terrorism dominate the political and media climate, some thinkers have questioned the entire FATCA mentality, where non-U.S. banks and non-U.S. governments are entrusted with the private data of U.S. citizens. The following countries have been entrusted with FATCA’s private data of U.S. persons: Brazil, Croatia, Israel, Kosovo, Mexico, Qatar, Uzbekistan, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, China, Columbia, Georgia, Serbia, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, UAE, Angola, Cambodia, Kazakhstan, Tunisia. FFI’s are required via FATCA to identify U.S. persons and store their asset values and U.S. Social Security numbers. There are many countries which have been, could be, or are at war or cold war, where FFI’s have implemented FATCA. There is no control over which government or which individuals at these locations have control of the identity of U.S. persons. Here are some examples of the quantity of FFI’s registered in troubled areas: Afghanistan: 15, Chad: 5. China: 1,021. North Korea: 1, Nigeria: 92. Iraq: 16. Russia: 1,117. Ukraine: 217. Venezuela; 179. Yemen: 13

Makes you feel nice and safe, doesn’t it…

Many countries have U.S. sanctions upon the country and the country’s leaders and their assets. Many of those countries have FATCA programs in their banks, where U.S. person customers are being identified, such as these countries and the quantity of FFI’s: Côte d’Ivoire (35) Zimbabwe (12)

Minimum requirements without limits on the upper end. FATCA has minimum standards in its methodology of finding U.S. persons. For example, the accounts with minimum end balance of 50,000 USD must be investigated with at least the U.S. indicia criteria specified. The FATCA rules do not require any FFI to not investigate or report or FATCA-process accounts as low as zero. The FFI’s are not prohibited from using any indicia to identify U.S. persons. There are no restrictions in FATCA regulations as to what is not allowed to be used against U.S. persons.

Marketability of American Financial Products. European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee public hearing on FATCA May 29, 2-13, Robert Stack stated “, I believe the, the members here present today and the participants understand that the United States, ah, put its markets at risk in doing FATCA”

Income Tax Complications. For the 2014 tax year, National Bank of Canada Inc. issued 1099’s for investments to US residents that only covered the 6 months prior to FATCA. With a 1099 in hand, many residents filed income taxes not knowing the 1099 was incomplete. Subsequent years without 1099’s leave residents guessing whether their dividends are ‘qualified’ for tax purposes.

FATCA and the European Union: Robert Stack of the IRS stated the administration position that it was incorrect (a myth) “that legislation could force foreign banks to violate laws in their own countries: [Instead,] Treasury’s decision to implement FATCA through IGAs that are respectful of the individual laws and customs of partner jurisdictions has contributed to the significant international interest in participating in FATCA compliance efforts.”

Privacy and data protection legislation in Europe. Civil rights such as the right to privacy, or the right to data protection as a taxpayer are said to be compromised. There is no provision in FATCA for the protection of taxpayer rights, complains legal researcher Leopoldo Parada. The association of data protection supervisors is working on the case. As for other data protection legislation in Europe, for instance, the Swedish law Personuppgiftslagen (PUL) or personal data law, requires (unforced) consent of the individual in order to send data to a third country. The need for the information must also be greater than the need for the persons integrity. It is forbidden to deliver data that is not protected to a level adequate to EU standard

FATCA and the ECHR: All of parties to the European Convention of Human Rights (which includes all EU member states) are bound by its provisions including the interpretation through the case law of the European Court of Human Rights. Each law must have respect for an individual’s private life except in cases of the state’s or population safety, or the country’s economic health. FATCA’s data is not used for the benefit of any EU member state. An EU member’s economic health is not improved by FATCA, it only avoids the threatened 30% tax sanctions by complying with FATCA.

E.U. requirements limiting data-sharing. FATCA does not fulfill the E.U. requirements limiting data-sharing which allow sharing to be done only with organizations following the (now invalidated) Safe Harbor Principles. The IRS is not listed as meeting this demand.

E.U. member state requirements that bank accounts be opened. Many EU countries require banks to open accounts for applicants (because this is the only method to receive salary). FATCA’s mechanism to close bank accounts if FATCA demands are not met violates such laws (see insättnings garanti in Sweden). New FATCA IGA requirements demand that banks shall not open accounts for U.S. persons or accounts for non-U.S. persons if the individual refuses to declare U.S.-person status upon bank account applications.

E.U. laws? Other country sovereignty? Bow down and grovel before the I.R.S. …

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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15 Responses to Can’t Find Any of 12 Million Illegals, but Can Track Every Overseas Account Holder

  1. Oliver K. Manuel says:

    There is little or no doubt now that Stalin won WWII, uniting nations and national academies of sciences on 24 OCT 1945 to “save the world from nuclear annihilation” by hiding the source of energy in atomic bombs from the public:

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/10640850/Solar_Energy_published.pdf

  2. cdquarles says:

    On top of all of that, the initial hook for this was, in part, drug prohibition. To control people you must make them feel guilty. Laws made of rubber are ideal for this. The law abiding will try to comply, but the you-know-who types will not. They’re exempt from the rules that apply to the rest of us. Who is John Galt? Producers of the world, Unite and go Galt!

  3. Sandy McClintock says:

    I have a US dollar account in the USA as well as an everyday Australian bank account (the US account dates back to when I was being paid USD by UN/World Bank for research in Africa. I am Australian but the volume of paperwork I have to fill in for IRS/FATCA is mind-boggling. What a waste of time for both me and the bank. I would prefer to pay the IRS tax on interest on US dollars – it amounts to around 1 USD per year. However I have to fill in IRS forms that discloses my Australian Tax File Number to prove I pay tax in Australia and am therefore exempt from IRS taxes. It feels like Imperialism x Totalitarianism! ;)

  4. E.M.Smith says:

    @Sandy:

    That’s exactly what’s wrong with this mess. Screws up everyone around the world for pennies at best.

    @cdquarles:

    I remember when you could buy cough syrup with codeine in it “over the counter” without prescription or paperwork. My “Mum’s Friend’s Mum” sold M.J. from her “Herbalist Cart” in England pre-W.W.II for “melancholy and poor appetite” and the British Empire doing fine, then…

    Frankly, there were far far fewer problems with drug abuse then, than now. The whole damn “war on things” idea needs to be deep-sixed, pronto. (Including the “war on ideas” crap too… like “war on terror”… how do you have a war on an emotional response? Want a war with a specific radical islamist group? Then decare it and exterminate them. Otherwise, the advocates for ‘war on terror’ ought to shut up and sit down…)

  5. Gail Combs says:

    E. M. The War on Terror is NOT a war on radical islamist groups it is a war on regular Americans.

    Napolitano stands by controversial report

    …the top House Democrat with oversight of the Department of Homeland Security said in a letter to Ms. Napolitano that he was “dumbfounded” that such a report would be issued.

    “This report appears to raise significant issues involving the privacy and civil liberties of many Americans – including war veterans,” said Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee…

    …Office of Intelligence and Analysis is one in an ongoing series of assessments to provide situational awareness to state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies on the phenomenon and trends of violent radicalization in the United States,” Ms. Napolitano said in her statement….

    “Rightwing extremism,” the report said in a footnote on Page 2, goes beyond religious and racial hate groups and extends to “those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely.”

    “It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration,” said the report, which also listed gun owners and veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars as potential risks….

    This is the SAME B!TCH that did not build the wall authorized by Congress and REMOVED the people patroling our southern boarder. Old 2013 Comment

    More recently I heard the Board Patol does not have enough AMMO and looking for that I found the 2012 article from Judicial Watch • Border Patrol Agents Ordered To Run, Hide From Shooters

    …Mexican drug-cartel violence is at an all-time high along the southern border yet the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has ordered federal agents on the front line to “run away” and “hide” when encountering a shooter.

    This may seem like a really bad joke, but it’s reality in the Obama DHS, which as we all know is headed by an official (Janet Napolitano) who is in deep denial about the severity of the crisis along the border. It wasn’t that long ago that Napolitano, who as Arizona governor advocated for illegal immigrants, declared the Mexican border “is as secure as it has ever been” and that violence in the area is merely a mistaken “perception.”….
    (wwwDOT)judicialwatch.org/blog/2012/07/border-patrol-agents-ordered-to-run-hide-from-shooters/

  6. Gail Combs says:

    the Mexican border “is as secure as it has ever been” and that violence in the area is merely a mistaken “perception.”…. OH REALLY???

    Unfortunately we saw the result yesterday. While thugs waving Mexican Flags, burned American flags, shouted obsenities, threw eggs, bottles, spitt upon knocked down, dragged, kicked and knocked a guy unconscious with a rock in a towel, The police stood a few feet away and watched. Calls to 911 went unanswered.

    CNN reports:

    The San Jose Police Department said they made a few arrests after the rally, but didn’t provide specifics. There was no significant property damage reported but an officer was assaulted, a statement said.
    (wwwDOT)cnn.com/2016/06/02/politics/donald-trump-california-protesters/

    Here is just one picture of the ” no significant property damage”

    A thug ran up behind this guy, who was just walking down the sidewalk and used a rock filled sap to knock him to the ground. A few inches over and a hit to the temple would have caused severe injury or possibly killed him. What was the response of reporters? He was asked, twice “So, you didn’t say anything to provoke them?” WTF?!
    Bashing a guy’s head in is NOT free speech! It is BATTERY YOU F…King A… H… !

    This disconnect from reality is explained by the Police Chief who twitted the day before “Tomorrow, we WILL protect the 1st Ammendment, our Community, and our Officers.’

    Obviously Americans are not OUR people. Americans do not even make it to the category of ‘Property’ that was damaged.

    When the videos of the violence hit the internet and the violence could no longer be swept under the rug, San Jose Mayor quickly ran to his Progressive Play Book and decided to blame Trump: ””Our police officers have done an extremely courageous and professional job so far,” San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo told The Associated Press by phone. “We’re all still holding our breath to see the outcome of this dangerous and explosive situation. At some point Donald Trump needs to take responsibility for the irresponsible behavior of his campaign,” Liccardo said.

    So a Candidate for the PRESIDENT OF THE USA is NOT WELCOME in a US city now????

    The Propaganda Wing of the occupier of the White House of course agrees with this mayor and is trying very hard to twist it so walking down the sidewalk to your car is now a ‘micro-aggression’ that should RIGHTFULLY be met with violence.

  7. Gail Combs says:

    The name of this game is to provoke an American citizen to violence and catch it ‘Live” on TV so the present government and the propagandist outlets can use it to ‘Show’ the right wing is VIOLENT and needs their guns removed NOW!

    So far Trump supporters have not reacted, thus the violence is escalating.

    Note these violent scum are recuited and earn $15/an hour or more for this according to ads on Craigslist.

    A march and demonstration against Trump at Trump Tower essentially fizzled Saturday when only 500 “protesters” of the promised 5000 showed up. Infiltrating the crowd, I learned most were from MoveOn or the Occupy movement. Soap was definitely in short supply in this crowd. Several admitted answering a Craig’s list ad paying $16.00 an hour for protesters.

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2016/03/anti-trump-protesters-admit-answering-craigslist-ad-and-getting-paid-to-protest-trump/

    It only takes a few to turn violent and get the mob going. When you see someone with a covered face, they are an agent provocateur who does not want to be identified. These are the professionals that move from event to event.

    Are these people organized? Oh yes and in a CHURCH!

    University Heights United Methodist Church
    2210 Silver Ave SE
    Albuquerque NM 87106
    (505) 266-2525
    (wwwDOT)pslweb.org/about

  8. Larry Ledwick says:

    It is even more “organized” than that, most people would be appalled if they knew the details of professional protesting. A couple years ago I stumbled across a long document (sort of a manual) on “black block tactics”, this is, if you have a couple days to burn a fascinating subject to dig into.

    They have refined protests to an art form. They segment the protestors into different specialties, some are called “the arrestables” these are folks who have made prior arraignments to get arrested during the event, These are typically folks who will present a good image on tv as harmless old folks, or young women. Then there is medical aid team setup to help treat and evacuate folks who get tear gassed or pepper sprayed. The useful idiots who get sucked into the protest for their own reasons and fill out the crowd, and the black block crew who often wear all black and full face covering and even low tech armor. They are the agent provocateurs who’s job is to drive the police nuts. They engage in rapid assault tactics, charge in and break up police lines, and “unarrest” folks by pulling them free of the cops. They also set up carefully timed actions like blockading street intersections to suck in the police to preplanned tactical situations, where they end up surrounded or have too many confrontation points to cover etc. Once you read their “user manual” you realize it is far from a spontaneous protest but a carefully orchestrated tactical battle of actions just below the level which will trigger massive force by the police. Their tactic is to create good video coverage of the “innocent” getting hauled away for the news media (they often have their own media folks) Their job is to get live video up on line in near real time to antagonize and energize the protest and “feed the beast” of the professional media with provocative video clips.

    These are not spontaneous protests but intentional provocation, to trigger a specific response that they can use for recruiting useful idiots or generating targeted media coverage. Ever wonder how the media always seem to have some live video clip of every cause celeb? It is because it was a staged and carefully “produced” media event with a core cadre of professional protestors who manipulate and steer the uninformed useful idiots into fleshing out their event and following the lead of the primary agitators.

    such as — lots more if you look for it.
    The Soviets perfected these sort of stage managed protests in the late 20th century and the anarchist and extreme left have adopted many of their methods.

    https://politicsandculture.org/2009/11/09/macht-kaputt-was-euch-kaputt-macht-on-the-history-and-the-meaning-of-the-black-block/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_bloc

    http://www.infoshop.org/Blackbloc-Faq

  9. E.M.Smith says:

    @Gail:

    “This behaviour is by design” (to quote a Microsoft website about a bug I was trying to fix…)

    See my rather long comment here:
    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2016/06/01/huff-post-pulled-article/#comment-68751

    in the part about the desire to destroy the Westphalian State and Nationalism. That’s the goal and it is best achieved by importing a load of non-nationals and NOT having them integrate. That is why Obama and fellow travelers want to bring in as many Mexicans and muslims as they can. The end goal is non-Westphalian Global International Socialism. Can’t have that if you have independent nation states ala Westphalian form with any sense of National Pride or self identity…

    @Larry:

    I thought folks already knew that?….

    I guess not… maybe I ought to write something up. But I’d rather play with FreeBSD ;-)

    Sidebar Story:

    Once, in the ’70s, I “was interested in a girl”… She wanted to go “sit on the railroad tracks to stop the war” during Vietnam protests. I accompanied her to the “protest”, along with her roommate and my friend. At one point, us two guys decided we were tired of sitting and wanted to wander around. We were both a bit too “straight laced” for our attempt at “cool”. Me in a a daishiki shirt, him in very short hair… with a head band.

    Turns out that made for the perfect costume. Two guys a bit “awkward” in their cool and both looking a bit too “professional”. We saw a couple of folks forming a circle and talking, so joined it. Turns out there was a “cool cop” there (“Corky The Cop” was his business card, with a pig in a cop hat on it). Some other ‘pairs of guys’ were all making ‘happy talk’ and looking just a bit uneasy. We joined in, also muttering ‘not much’. Eventually a quorum formed and talk shifted to “group dynamics” and “schedules” and more… We were in a field meeting of undercover police and informants. IMHO, most all were sworn officers. We “fit in” in how we looked and our stiff social skills… and moving in a team of two.

    The interesting bits:

    There had been a fire set on the Railroad Tracks to “stop the train”. The crowed loved it. A train approached to about 400 yards away and slowed to a halt. Trains don’t do that without miles of warning, and if they have miles of warning, they don’t need to creep up to crowd viewing range…. One of the uniforms in the group (IIRC, Corky) said “OK, keep the Smokey The Bear scene going for about 5 more minutes, then bring up the fire department to put it out. In about a half hour, the crowd will start to thin and we can pick out the group leaders and trouble makers.” There was more talk of having the train back up, then two guys broke off to head toward the fire on the tracks area (not uniforms) and a couple more headed over toward where a fire truck was away from the crowd. My friend and I muttered something like “got it”, and with eye pointers picked a direction to ‘saunter off’.

    One of the folks in the “circle” had been the “leader” of the march to the railroad tracks. At the time, burning Bank Of America branches was “common” in protests. HE was t he one who had convinced the crowd (“marching” from near the dorms the mile or two to the RR tracks and bank area) to NOT hit BofA but instead “do something that has a real effect and stop the trains!”… He was a grad student and Resident Advisor in the dorms who folks knew, and trusted…

    In short, the whole thing was choreographed on TWO sides. The external rabble rousers had their plans, the local (*very smart” University and City) police another.

    In the end, the external rabble rousers were dutifully arrested (after all the “children of the powerful” had gone back to the dorms to study… at about 9:30 or 10 pm on schedule…) and the train pulled through town, tanks aboard, at about midnight. I have pictures of much of it. Somewhere. Grainy Tri-X pushed to something like 1600 ASA and some Royal X Pan shot in a Canon FT/QL with a 55 mm F 1.2 lens. I suspect the high end camera around my neck added to the perception that I was “one of them” along with the way I was taking “documentary style” shots of protest groups and such. I.e. not very artsy, and not doing political staging shots.

    One other note on this:

    There was a middle ages heavy set guy in a suit taking movies. Not very good ones, just long slow pans of the groups. Nothing like the kind of shot you would want on ‘the news’. Buddy and I approached him (as he was isolated near the tracks) and asked “Who are you?”. He was a bit ‘taken aback’ and shoved out his cover story “Freelance photographer for TV news tonight”. Camera was a 16 mm of some vintage, but with a big lens. He had a hard low light problem ( I know… I was pushing it with my very Available Darkness rig) yet was doing hand held movies. This would require chemical processing and that would take at least a day, then. NOT in time for the News Cycle. Then it would be grainy and B&W… We pegged him as an “Agency” guy. Said something (with stern piercing look that says “we see through you”) like “OK, thank you” and walked away. He had taken some film of us approaching, and got a bit more as we turned to go.

    As we got about 40 feet away, he reached into the breast pocket of his coat and pulled out some kind of communications radio (pre-cell phone days) and talked to someone, while looking pointedly at us walking away. Likely asking “Who were those guys! What service?”… That nobody would know, but knew we had been “in the circle” probably caused all sorts of rumors. I like to imagine they figured use for a TLA without named agents ;-)

    I think I got a picture or two of him as we approached, but likely from too far away to show any detail with my chosen film and 55 mm lens. Oh Well. IMHO he was likely FBI. Then can’t (or couldn’t then) do undercover as well as the C.I.A. or even the local cops (who were daily tested against genius level UC kids…) It probably didn’t hurt when the report came back that I had arrived accompanying the daughter of the Director Of Lawrence Livermore Nuclear Lab, and left with her… and seemed attentive and protective but respectful… Clarence Clearance would have been in the crowd somewhere, and likely got to report on us. I like to think he got a chuckle out of the evening ;-) Never did figure out which one was him… but we know he was always around “from other events other times”…

    The point of all this?

    Aside from just being a neat story (and one I loved living…), it shows that demonstrations are, and have been for at least 40 years, stage managed by BOTH sides. As long as each gets the TV coverage they like, and not a lot of damage to people is done, everybody is fine with it. IF a police car is left unattended near a crowd, and “someone” decides they ought to beat up the car, not break down the doors of the facility, I would expect that was planned. Because I’ve seen exactly that happen, from both outside and inside “the circle”.

    Is it a “bad thing”? I don’t see it that way. It minimizes property damage and injury. Lets the crowd get “their message out”. Identifies the external provocateurs. Lets the police “look good”. Frankly, other than being deceptive, I can’t see much wrong with it. Then again, I was a Law Enforcement Eagle Scout on my way to being a police officer myself at one point… (which is likely also part of why I ‘fit in’ to ‘the circle’… modeling posture and tone of comments on those around me as I usually do, and knowing things like the “10-codes”…) So maybe my bias is to the Police side. Besides, I like Corky… he was a cool cop ;-)

    So yeah, it’s all staged and professionally choreographed. On both sides. Oh, and by the media. They know how to ‘play the role’ and you can see the Police and the Protesters carefully aware of the reporters and “letting them be” most of the time. Saw one police line of truncheons and body armor on the news a day or two ago, marching forward, in that “get off the street now or be clubbed” mode; neatly “give space” to the two camera men (one in front of the one holding the camera showing me the image…) to step back between some cars. Then politely point to a spot a few meters ahead for a better shot… as they “retreated” from the line…

    Only if it gets ugly and goes “off script” do you get a load of violence (from both sides) and arrests. Otherwise it is only the ones assigned to be arrested who get the honor of a court date.

    FWIW, I was also once on the street in Santa Clara when the police decided to ‘clear it’ (during the “cruzing” times when they first made it illegal about 1979?). As the office approached and announced the “this is an illegal assembly, go home” line (night stick in hand); I, politely, asked “Don’t I have a right to be on a public street? What happens if I don’t leave?” in my usual overly formal geekly voice. I saw the suppressed eye-roll as he thought “oh God, another computer geek” and also politely answered “Well, then I would have to arrest you and you would spend the night in jail”. To which I responded “Oh, well, that doesn’t sound good at all. Thank you officer, I think I’ll be heading home now.” I’m sure he got a good laugh out of telling the guys “back at the station” about the clueless geeks in silicon valley… In fact, I knew that was protocol, but wanted to know if that was what was planned for this particular night of street clearing…

    Ah well, back to work ;-)

  10. Larry Ledwick says:

    Yes those who are paying attention know it or at least strongly suspect it, but I know many who have no clue. Folks who think union guys just decided to show up and got spat on or something and then “fought back” against that provocation. I spent some time training with a guy who taught defensive tactics for law enforcement for a while. He also had some interesting stories about protests in the 1970’s and such. He also knew how to provoke a “provocation” by crowding a protestor so close he invaded personal space and instinctively the guy would try to push him away — poof — assault on a police officer, thump you very much.

    There are street smart folks on both sides but the thing I found interesting with the black block tactics document is it showed deep planning and strategy that was almost military in its execution. When you get the wrong match up (ie very savy protest organizer, and self righteous not too bright government officials and cops — or the reverse) you get a major meltdown like the Rodney king riots or the Democratic convention in Chicago 1968 (Philadelphia 2016 ??) that goes completely sideways.

    I do not have a good feeling about both major party conventions this year and would not be surprised if the protests get manipulated to very unsatisfactory out comes.

  11. cdquarles says:

    To back up EM’s story, I have one. It is a well known one. That event was staged. What you see on TV is likely to not be as it appeared to be. Many of the people that I met who were involved in this story are now dead. All that I will say is that, if you want to know some truth, I’ll tell you some of the details that have been left out or removed from the record.

  12. E.M.Smith says:

    @CDQuarles:

    Maybe over a beer someday… Don’t want you joining the others “who were involved”… unless there is no longer risk…

  13. omanuel says:

    @ Gail

    I appreciate your insight into the breakdown of our government. I expressed my own biased explanation for this in the first comment. Would you be willing to succinctly tell us why you think the government we admired in our youth has been replaced with one almost none of us trust today?

  14. p.g.sharrow says:

    @OManuel

    ” Would you be willing to succinctly tell us why you think the government we admired in our youth has been replaced with one almost none of us trust today?”

    We were young and dumb! Lol ;-) kind of like todays youth
    The Kennedys were nearly as corrupt as the Clintons. and LBJ was as crooked a politician as any of today. Remember! We came within minuets of atomic war and then the war in southeast asia. The birth of the welfare state. The vast expansion of government grant fueled BS science. and on and on.

    We have merely become old and wise enough to see the truth.

    Bureaucrats have made themselves immune to the controlling laws and have assumed the mantel of sovereign over all of us. This is the thing that must be addressed. The people are sovereign and bureaucrats are our servants…pg

  15. omanuel says:

    @ p.g.sharrow

    I agree. I was young, idealistic and genuinely believed the hippie movement would improve the world. I now think Senator McCarthy was much smarter than I was. Stalin’s bureaucrats were already immune to controlling laws, but US bureaucrats enjoy that privilege here today.

    Do you or Gail also see UN as an abbreviation for the expanded USSR? Do you see today’s worldwide government and false “consensus scientific models” as confirmation of George Orwell’s prediction in Nineteen Eighty-Four“?

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