Thursday, January 28, 2016

Tyranny, Defiance, and the Death of LaVoy Finicum

LaVoy Finicum, who was shot at a roadblock by Oregon State Troopers and left to bleed to death in the snow, was not a violent criminal. He and his colleagues from the group calling itself Citizens for Constitutional Freedom were traveling to John Day, Oregon to organize political resistance to federal control over lands in the western United States.

After trying to run the roadblock, Finicum plowed his vehicle into a snowbank. He exited with his hands in the air, staggering in the snow before making a motion with his right hand that the FBI claims was an effort to grab a handgun. Another possibility is that Finicum, as some witnesses claim, was shot while his hands were raised in a posture of surrender, and that his subsequent movements were involuntary. 

The carefully planned ambush, which displayed detailed intelligence regarding the plans of Finicum and his friends, was a joint operation between the FBI and the Oregon State Police. It was was not carried out in defense of persons or property, but to enforce the will of those in control of the Regime. Finicum, a 55-year-old rancher from Arizona, had become the subject of a federal warrant after renouncing his grazing contract with the Washington-based usurpers who control range lands in that state

The night before he was killed on Oregon’s Highway 395 in an FBI-orchestrated ambush, Finicum had denounced the “escalation” he had seen on the part of government officials seeking to end the CCF’s occupation of the Malheur National Refuge. On several previous occasions Finicum – who had raised cattle and scores of foster children -- made it clear that he would rather die than spend the balance of his life immured in a government cage.

Reasonable people can contend that the occupation was an imprudent provocation. That criticism can apply with equal validity to many similarly imprudent acts carried out by idealistic but obnoxious men during the 1760s and early 1770s, and now celebrated (in sanitized form) by inmates of the government-operated school system. Many of the same people who numbly absorb annual recitations of Patrick Henry’s oration at the Old South Church will see Finicum as a fanatic who committed “suicide by cop,” rather than someone for whom “Give me liberty, or give me death” was a credo, rather than a cliché. 

After being shot multiple times, Finicum fell on his back – but he didn’t die instantly. The video captured by an FBI surveillance aircraft showed him lifting his hand imploringly, and holding it up for several seconds before he lost consciousness.
Finicum raises his hand.
None of the officers on the scene approached Finicum to disarm him and render medical assistance while there was still a chance to save his life. In the press conference that served as a debut for the FBI’s snuff film, Greg Bretzing, a spokesman for the American Cheka, explained that potentially life-saving aid was withheld while the officers took Ammon Bundy and four others into custody.

This emphasis on “force protection” reflects the wartime priorities of an occupying army. Fallen enemy combatants are not owed the same consideration as criminal suspects. Thus Finicum’s mortal remains were left sprawled on the frozen ground, in a posture eerily reminiscent of the body of Lakota Chief Bigfoot following the vengeful Seventh Cavalry’s massacre at Wounded Knee.

The federal statute under which Ammon Bundy and six other members of the CCF have been charged, 18 USC section 372, offers no protection whatsoever to the persons and property of U.S. citizens. That measure, enacted in 1861, is designed to protect “officers” of the federal government (including administrative personnel and other bureaucrats) as they prey upon the Regime’s subjects.  It originally targeted actual and suspected sympathizers with the Confederacy, which in practice meant anybody who respected and defended the right of states to withdraw from the Union, even if motivated by an ignoble cause.
Chief Bigfoot at Wounded Knee.

After the Confederacy was defeated and the once-voluntary Union was repurposed into a Soyuz, the same measure was frequently pressed into service during the thirteen-year military occupation of the South. A Justice Department memo written in 1977 noted that “although this provision is more than 100 years old, it has been infrequently used. Most recorded cases have involved internal revenue agents whose efforts to track down tax-evading operators of illegal stills met with resistance.” 

Those anti-Bootlegger operations, significantly, continued for decades after the Regime ended the exercise in authoritarian derangement called alcohol prohibition: The 1977 memo cited three cases that occurred over the previous twelve years, the latest reaching the Supreme Court in 1971. The purpose of the memo, significantly, was to provide the FBI with a legal rationale for investigating and prosecuting, under the rubric of “conspiracy to impede federal officers,” acts that were not explicitly criminalized by other federal statutes. 

The “conspiracy to impede” statute “did not even contain a requirement that an overt act be done in furtherance of the conspiracy before the conspiratorial conduct would become actionable,” pointed out Assistant Attorney General John M. Harmon.  “The broad purpose of protecting the Federal presence as fully as possible supports a broad, rather than narrow, reading of the word `officer,’” he continued. Thus it was the Justice Department’s opinion that “the term `officer’… includes both permanent and temporary, full- and part-time officers and employees of the United States.”

Sixteen federal tax-consumers are usually stationed in the cluster of buildings at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. They act as a salient representing an unaccountable federal bureaucracy that has usurped local jurisdictions by seizing land that was not theirs by right or constitutional mandate. Indeed, the federal claim to the land in Harney County, Oregon rests entirely on illegal settlement by white ranchers in violation of treaty obligations with the Paiute Indians.
Unlike the peaceful protest by the CCF, the illegal occupation of what would become Harney County in the 1870s did involve violence and extensive property damage – and it was actively encouraged by the Feds as a way of consolidating control over territory to which they were not entitled. That act of land larceny was “legitimized” in the fashion described by St. Augustine. A “government,” he explained in The City of God, is simply a gang that "acquires territory, establishes a base, captures cities and subdues peoples," and then achieves legitimacy "not by the renouncing of aggression but by the attainment of impunity." 

Although the CCF did express its intention to use force in self-defense, the “occupation” of the vacant headquarters buildings – which would be considered trespassing, if they were legitimately owned by a definable victim – was not achieved by violence. But because the action undermined the local franchise of a Regime claiming a universal monopoly on violence, it was treated as an act of terrorism. 

In her sophomoric screed called a “criminal complaint,” FBI Special Agent (she is, to be certain,  a very “special” agent) Katherine Armstrong uses quadruple hearsay to depict the “occupiers” as a nest of terrorists bent on wreaking bloody havoc in Harney County.  After the “occupation” of the refuge began, “BLM was notified … by a Harney County Sheriff’s Officer that a source informed him that the group … had explosives, night vision goggles, and weapons and that if they didn’t get the fight they wanted out there they would bring the fight to town.” 

The BLM in action: Who are the terrorists here?
None of this was true, of course, and the conveniently anonymous “source” is hidden beneath redundant layers of official deniability. The only “fight” conducted by the CCF was a quixotic campaign “to restore and defend the Constitution,” as Armstrong’s criminal complaint observes.  This kind of seditious talk was enough to cause Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward, who displayed canine docility in doing the bidding of his federal masters, to irrigate his skivvies. 

The CCF, quavered Ward in a January 27 press conference, “have chosen to threaten and intimidate the America they profess to love.” No being in whom we can find even a faint flicker of rationality could genuinely believe that anybody -- let alone the entire country -- was threatened and intimidated by the “occupiers.” But people whose position in society depends on the threat and exercise of lethal violence are intimidated by those who are prepared to call their bluff. 

This, more than anything else, explains why LaVoy Finicum was left to die in the snow while his killers hurled flash-bang grenades at the terrified survivors in his vehicle. State-inflicted death is the last argument of tyrants, particularly those who fear that defiance may become contagious.

This week's Freedom Zealot Podcast examines the effort by the Ada County Prosecutor's office to imprison political dissident Matthew Townsend:

Last week's installment provided additional background and details:

Dum spiro, pugno!


Sibkiss said...

"Irrigate his skivvies" ??! Lol, Well now I've heard everything

frenchy said... they are using drones.

I wonder how long before they are armed?

kirk said...

what we have allowed all over the planet in the name of 'freedom' and 'democracy' are now being deployed in the homeland, the occupiers - yes, occupiers - having learned their trade 'over there'.

the dog has turned on its master (purported to be we, the people), the 'master' now being the target with the 'crime' being the 'desire for freedom' from the diktats of a series of corrupt regimes whose only true 'gain' has been 'eating out the substance of the people' and the formation of a police state lording over us.

unless and until the acquiescence by we, the people, is terminated, this sad sequence of events in Harney County will be repeated with increasing frequency, boldness and destruction.

Bill in IL said...

No need to wonder Frenchy, they are ALWAYS armed, don't kid yourself.

Will, I wholeheartedly agree that complaint by the moron Katherine Armstrong was HORRIBLE. You were too kind calling it sophomoric. I could not finish reading the thing as her bad grammar, idiotic reasoning and corrupt, drummed up charged are simply ridiculous to any rational human being. No to mention her writing is at the 6th grade level and I am being very kind here too.

Any more information on Jack Yantis? Or has the sheriff not finished white washing yet?

GenEarly said...

"After trying to run the roadblock". Either you are engaged in peaceful protest going to a meeting, Or you are at war. Mixing the two is not intelligent, imo.
Is there Feral tyranny, especially in the West over "BLM Lands"? Yes! LaVoy had earlier incidents that formed his mindset, but this Bundy II was not well planned to say the very least,and is more than unfortunate. The Liberty movement has been set back. To most citizens this aerial footage looks like common perps evading arrest, especially after fleeing the initial stop.
Why did they have to occupy Federal Property as a prerequisite to attending meetings and enlightening local people? Mixed strategical objectives and awful resistance tactics.
If Perception was the key to Bundy II; it is a disaster.

Anonymous said...

It likely was armed.

Anonymous said...

@ GenEarly:

"Why did they have to occupy Federal Property as a prerequisite to attending meetings and enlightening local people? "

- Every one of these "resistance groups" (militias) and concerned citizen movements most likely has one or more Federal informants (read; paid stooges with rap sheets hired by the government) and posing as a member of the group. Often they operate as instigators as well.So most likely the Malhuer occupiers were steered into this stupidity by such "members" of the group. Since this has always been the case throughout history, the communist revolutionaries in Czarist Russia formed cells of perhaps 3 to 5 (I believe) members only ONE of whom knew any member of another such group. The same technique was used by the IRA in Ireland. I am not, by the way advocating any such tactic or political organization, but merely pointing out what has worked in the past for oppressed people in order to avoid infiltration by agents provacateurs.
As a side note, I find it hard to imagine that any of the members of these militias have any military experience, considering the immense blunders that they have committed both in the choice of the building that they chose to occupy and the very odd practice of leaving the compound area to travel to town for public relations meetings. The whole affair seemed to have been conducted in a very amateurish fashion, at least to me.

Anonymous said...

Interesting that the Fed Gov wants so much land in this area. There are various websites pointing to evidence that there is both gold and uranium ore under the Malhuer area land. Also, there is an Australian mining concern waiting in the wings to begin "yellow cake" ore mining in that area. Profit to be made for the politically connected once that deal is concluded. As always, follow the money- what other reason could the government have for wanting such vast tracts of land federalized? Or possibly they have in mind the sale of the mineral rights to China as payback for our incredible fiscal debt to them, lol.

Katzkiner said...

Bingo, google and read up on the sale of 20% of US uranium production under name of the Canadian company "Uranium One".
Putins business partnerns donated $160 million to the Clinton Foundation about the time of the sale.
Those Russians such humanitarians.

Anonymous said...

Donna from North Dakota...

I've been pondering how Citizens for Constitutional Freedom could have employed a less obviously confrontational approach, at the same time supporting rancher grievances in Harney County - particularly the Hammond Family ranch operation.

With Lucie Hammond's husband & son being jailed for a long period of time, the ranch will likely go bankrupt and quickly bought up at a loss by BLM. (I understand BLM has first 'right of purchase' if the ranch cannot remain viable. Nice deal especially if, as rumor has it, there is uranium on their 6,000 acres.)

Lucie is 74. If I were in her place, I would be overwhelmed!

I do understand the desire to address shared grievances with a show of solidarity. Once the Bundy group had made a public statement to that effect, WHY not spend what time you had to make your point by helping Lucie Hammond at the ranch doing whatever needed to be done in the absence of her husband and son. Maybe even rotate shifts over the long haul in order to hold on to the operation so there was something for the men to come back to.

Doing chores, running cows, calving, branding, castrating, pasturing, and hauling steers to market might have failed to get ongoing media attention, but it may also have brought the ranching community together to solidify goals and how to proceed to the next step.

Right now, as I see it, the Big Boys have the military advantage.

Sometimes survival depends upon taking a more 'humble' approach around the Devourer.

Gil said...

What were these Bundy people expecting? The land in question being handed over them no questions asked? They weren't "being violent" therefore no force could be used to expel them? The main characters says he rather die than go to jail? I guess it proves the adage "be careful what you ask for because you just might get it." The fact these people kept getting sex toys in the mail shows how much support the public had of them. At the end of the day Bundy & friends are they deserve to be.

Ronald Thomas West said...

Having spent much of my life in close association with Native Americans (those who still speak their language) I see little difference between the ranchers and the feds insofar as hubris over who should possess the land. As well, both are possessed of an overweening self importance.

My view would be private property in relation to land ownership is a hangover from feudalism. No matter were one a rancher or a homeowner, were one to fall on hard times and get in serious arrears in taxes, ultimately that party will be turned out into the street. It's hardly just or in line with the teaching of the historical Jesus insofar as any Christian sense of 'Charity.'

In the elder tradition of the native peoples, all would be responsible for care of the land in a communal sense of ownership. This would have little to with boundaries, fences, grazing private herds and related overgrazing, leases and whatnot. And most certainly would have nothing to do with narcissistic fights over who has the right to exploit the land for personal, private gain or who has the right to tell someone else what they can or cannot do. It was a system of libertarianism where everyone was possessed of a high sense of ethics and self discipline manifesting, above all, in self-restraint. Care for the land itself required understanding this was a resource which was above that of any individual's rights. Whether the ranchers or the feds, both would (have, actually) usurped this aboriginal philosophy, violating principles of ethics, morals and law (with the employ of 'color of law') in the process.

Insofar as the killing of LaVoy Finnicum, it would appear on its face to be a 'color of law' murder that violated his constitutional rights. Were that true, it's a 'case of the chickens come home to roost' where there is a beginning treatment of the ranchers little different to the treatment of the Indians in former times. It was wrong.

However I don't see the ranchers on equal moral footing with the Indians, the argument between the ranchers and the feds must ultimately boil down to an argument between two thieves.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm. You should've been there with your buddys pulling the trigger on Finicum et al. You would have had the higher body count you want.

Anonymous said...

Ooo! I like that literati moniker. Shows you've given considerable deep thought to what you spew.

4threvolutionarywar said...

How many years of failure and defeat have to go by before the "militia" movement stops running headlong into ambushes? This crew made every possible mistake, and now a good man is dead and the rest are headed to prison.

Is anyone in the liberty going to learn anything from this disaster? Or are you instead going to blame someone else for another self-inflicted defeat and wallow in the pathetic narratives of how oppressed you are, like some kind drug addicted welfare bums?

Anonymous said...

It had a laser that it flashed on LaVoy several times while he lie dying in the snow. See it in the video.

Anonymous said...

"...especially after fleeing the initial stop." What you cannot see on the initial stop is that they are shot at and that is when Ryan Payne got injured and then left the vehicle and was arrested. They may have been shot at again, causing LaVoy to choose to flee in self preservation and preservation of the lives of those with him. Little did he know that about a mile up the road and around a couple of bends, an ambush awaited.

Anonymous said...

Susie Hammond, not Lucie.

arthur H, Oregon said...

The man was simply gunned down for defiance. He was surely a better man than any of Oregon "gang members" who wanted him stopped. I suppose the only thing that could have potentially saved him is for mass amounts of people come to stand by their side and willing to draw a line the sand. If not now, when?

Anonymous said...

Has anybody noticed the video that LaVoy had posted on his Twitter account about the 'land grabs': Disgusting is a very mild word that comes to mind.

Anonymous said...

from Donna in North Dakota:

"Susie Hammond, not Lucie."

Thank you, for the correction...Susan (Susie) Hammond.

I'm afraid my gaffe illustrates the point too well.

In the rush to 'right wrongs' we often forget who the victims are and what they are left to suffer alone.

Anonymous said...

'Land grab' video above with id's of party participants.

Anonymous said...

Glad someone is looking into the identities of these 'evil-servants'. In watching the video, it should be noted, starting at the 8:54 mark, the comments made about the ranches and their importance to those figures on the wall. Elitist corruption at its finest? These people have sold their souls and it's probably not even to Satan . . .far worse.

Pat Anderson said...

Has anyone found out about the killing of Jack Yantis in November, has anyone been charged with his murder?

William N. Grigg said...

The most recent report says that the ISP is waiting on "lab results," which seems to validate my suspicion that the official story will depict the victim as a drunken, irresponsible man who made the officers fear for their lives. This would be just enough to get them over the Graham v. Connor "reasonable officer" threshold.

4threvolutionarywar said...

I am absolutely sympathetic to the Hammond case and believe that a radical political provocation around their cause could have been used to good effect. Instead we have a complete train wreck, with one man dead and everyone else now in route to the razor wire slave camp, probably for life.

Instead of recoiling from such a grievous defeat and soberly reflecting on the obvious causes, the Libertarians will now rush to take up as loudly as possible an argument they have already lost. No thinking will occur at all, because that would interfere with your endless moral posturing competition and your Militia-Action-Playset role playing games.

Revolution 101:

If you want to work within the political system to shut down the police state, you will have to have the American people on your side.

If you want to overthrow the state with a revolution, you will also have to have the American people on your side.

Nothing is going to change (except to get worse) unless you have the support of the American people. Without it you are a marginal crank with some bitcoins and a plastic gun. That means that you must engage in radical politics in order to get them on your side.

When you show up for a "peaceful protest" all decked out like a blackwater goon in tactical gear (with three assault rifles and seven pistols), you communicate very effectively that you are not a peaceful protester but a heavily armed idiot looking for a shoot out with the feds.

The Militia-Action-Playset is only an attractive proposition to other psychotics who can no longer tell reality from a video game, who have spent their entire adult lives hanging out in the WND forums, and who are thus completely socially retarded and absolutely unable to communicate with anyone outside of their marginal subculture.

If you want to actually accomplish anything, you need to throw away your copy of Atlas Shrugged and pick up a copy of Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky.


Anonymous said...

Akira, i like your comments, but i don't recommend your solution. The results of violence will not be a fragrant bloom.>