May 8, 2014

“This is what the Fourth Amendment looks like?”

Could be, I guess. When it’s described in its original German.

Just before dawn on Oct. 3, 2013, the homes of R.J. Johnson, Deborah Jordahl, and several other conservatives across Wisconsin were rudely awakened by the bright floodlights of law enforcement vehicles.

Deputies pounded on doors, executed search warrants, seized business papers, computer equipment, phones and other devices. During these very bright, very noisy raids, these conservatives, targeted in a secret John Doe probe launched by a Democrat district attorney, were “restrained under police supervision and denied the ability to contact their attorneys.”

The details of what sources have previously described to Wisconsin as “paramilitary-style” raids were made public for the first time Tuesday, in a ruling by Judge Rudolph Randa of the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.

The probe had been looking into possible illegal coordination between conservative groups and Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s recall election campaign, but came under fire for the opaque way it was conducted.

Randa granted a motion to halt the so-called John Doe investigation that has targeted dozens of conservative organizations since August 2012. In doing so, he sided with conservative activist Eric O’Keefe and his Wisconsin Club for Growth.

O’Keefe and the free-market advocacy group in February filed a civil rights lawsuit against Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, a Democrat, two of his henchmen, John Doe Special Prosecutor Francis Schmitz, and Dean Nickel, a shadowy investigator contracted by the state Government Accountability Board.

The lawsuit asserts the investigation is nothing more than a political witch hunt, retaliation for political successes in recent years during the leadership of Republican Walker. […]

Randa’s ruling details some of what conservatives have described as strong-armed raids and Fourth Amendment abuses.

“Among the materials seized were many of the Club’s records that were in the possession of Ms. Jordahl and Mr. Johnson,” Randa wrote.

Jordahl is listed as a consultant for the Wisconsin Club for Growth. Johnson has served as an adviser for both the club and Walker’s campaign.

The warrants were executed at the request of Nickel, the GAB’s special investigator.


“The subpoenas indicated that their recipients were subject to a Secrecy Order, and that their contents and existence could not be disclosed other than to counsel, under penalty of perjury. The subpoenas’ list of advocacy groups indicates that all or nearly all right-of-center groups and individuals in Wisconsin who engaged in issue advocacy from 2010 to the present are targets of the investigation.”

For conservatives outside the investigation who suspected Wisconsin’s politically charged John Doe probe was dangerously close to the IRS’ targeting of conservative organizations, Randa’s ruling would appear to substantiate those concerns.

As Chisholm and crew did in their first John Doe probe into conservatives connected to the governor, the prosecutors, with the blessing of the presiding John Doe judge, conducted extremely public raids, grabbed up an array of personal property and placed targets under a strict gag order that prevented them from publicly defending their reputations.


O’Keefe contends the probe has had a chilling effect on conservative organizations’ First Amendment rights. The Wall Street Journal editorial board has dubbed the John Doe as Wisconsin’s “Political Speech Raid.”

The court filing notes that O’Keefe lost most of his fundraising abilities for the club immediately because:

  • It would be unethical to raise money without disclosing that he is a target in a criminal investigation.
  • It would be unwise for prospects to invest the time required for them to independently evaluate any risks.
  • The secrecy order purports to bar O‘Keefe from disclosing the facts of the investigation and the reasons he believes that WCFG is not guilty of any crimes.
  • O‘Keefe cannot assure donors that their information will remain confidential as prosecutors have targeted that information directly.

“As a result, O‘Keefe estimates that the Club has lost $2 million in fundraising that would have been committed to issue advocacy,” the filing states.


Many of the people O’Keefe previously has dealt with in political activism don’t want to communicate with him about political issues, the court document states.

“The subpoenas serve as a warning to those individuals that they should not associate with the Club,” Randa’s ruling asserts.

The left is not just part of a two-party system operating within a constitutional republic.   It is a radical, alien movement aimed at circumventing and otherwise overthrowing the US as, by design and intent, a constitutionally constrained representative republic.

With armed bureaucracies and a willingness to break the law first and justify assaults on Constitutional protections later, the New Leftists who have taken over the Democrat party are anathema to our system of governance.  And they only grow emboldened by successes such as these:  yes, the court ruled against them; but by then, the desired damage had been done, and the “right kinds of people” harassed, gagged, and deprived of political speech — which may or may not have had an outcome on certain elections or election-year policy questions.

This is why we rally even to an inarticulate besieged rancher like Cliven Bundy, knowing we’ll be tied to his indelicate racial remarks, just as we know the indelicate racial remarks of progressives will be swept under the rug entirely, despite their alliance with the Democrat party, the party of slavery, Jim Crow, and anti-civil rights activism.

In subtle ways and not-so-subtle ways, the left is sending a message:  raise your voice against us and we just may fuck up your lives — at least until some court can figure things out, by which time you’ll be broke and shamed.

That these people pretend to champion “the people” they so clearly despise is the cruelest joke of all.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 2:57pm

Comments (40)

  1. The obvious question we all ask is what suddenly made them so bold.

    Desperation may be part of the answer. I was wondering if it all started with the way the left got away with all those frivolous lawsuits against Sarah Palin. Many on the left saw nothing wrong with it. I had a left-leaning acquaintance, who is otherwise a smart and fair person, think it was OK since it was “legal” and politics is rough.

  2. what suddenly made them so bold.

    Eric Holder and the MSM.

    They know they can get away with their thuggery just long enough to have the desired effect.

    What are we going to do: hashtag them to death?

  3. Further brazen lawlessness:

    Louie Gohmert Grills Comcast Lawyer: Is Comcast Blocking Glenn Beck’s Purchase of a Cable Network in Order to Keep Him Off the Air Until After the 2014 Elections?”

    “10% of all Tea Party donors have been audited

  4. This is frightening.

  5. “Those that make peaceful revolution impossible make violent revolution inevitable.” — John F. Kennedy

    “The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed for those exceptionally rare circumstances where all other rights have failed – where the government refuses to stand for reelection and silences those who protest; where courts have lost the courage to oppose, or can find no one to enforce their decrees. However improbable these contingencies may seem today, facing them unprepared is a mistake a free people get to make only once.” — Justice Alex Kozinski, Ninth Circuit Court, in his dissent to Silveira v. Lockyer (the case which was overturned by ‘Heller’)

  6. Sad to see this once-notable Republic writhe in it’s death throes.

    We can only hope that many of the leftists who approve of these tactics find themselves ensnared by the same henchmen they are clapping for now.

  7. It’s happening on college campuses too.

    some students—especially Jews—have been to Israel on trips where they learn the other side of the story from the pro-Palestinian propaganda that is often shoved down their throats in classes or at college forums. So rather than merely accept the lies about Israel being an “apartheid” state they can lean on their own experiences and speak about the equal rights that are held by all people in the Jewish state or discuss the complex questions about the West Bank in terms other than that of an “occupation.”

    That’s a problem for the BDS (boycott, divest, sanction) crowd, but they’ve come up with an effective answer to it: start a campaign seeking to stigmatize those who take trips to Israel sponsored by Jewish organizations. That’s what’s happening at UCLA where an election has promoted a debate over whether it is ethical for candidates for student offices to have been to Israel on a visit sponsored by a Jewish organization. This specious issue was raised in an article published in the student newspaper the Daily Bruin last week by two members of Students for Justice for Palestine, an anti-Zionist group. It was followed by an attempt to get the student government to enact a ban on its members going to the Middle East with pro-Israel groups. That failed but, as the Daily Bruin also reported, a majority of candidates for student government positions have now signed a pledged not to take such trips.

  8. >It’s happening on college campuses too.<

    brownshirts = ass sniffers

  9. the “confuse the plumbing peeps” are ivy ‘educated’.

  10. “Everyone, however, is in fact involved and enslaved, not only the
    greengrocers but also the prime ministers. Differing positions in the
    hierarchy merely establish differing degrees of involvement: the
    greengrocer is involved only to a minor extent, but he also has very
    little power. The prime minister, naturally, has greater power, but in
    return he is far more deeply involved. Both, however, are unfree,
    each merely in a somewhat different way. The real accomplice in this
    involvement, therefore, is not another person, but the system itself.
    Position in the power hierarchy determines the degree of responsibility
    and guilt, but it gives no one unlimited responsibility and
    guilt, nor does it completely absolve anyone. Thus the conflict
    between the aims of life and the aims of the system is not a conflict
    between two socially defined and separate communities; and only a
    very generalized view (and even that only approximative) permits us
    to divide society into the rulers and the ruled. Here, by the way, is
    one of the most important differences between the post-totalitarian
    system and classical dictatorships, in which this line of conflict can
    still be drawn according to social class. In the post-totalitarian
    system, this line runs de/acto through each person, for everyone in
    his or her own way is both a victim and a supporter of the system.
    What we understand by the system is not, therefore, a social order
    imposed by one group upon another, but rather something which
    permeates the entire society and is a factor in shaping it, something
    which may seem impossible to grasp or define (for it is in the nature
    of a mere principle), but which is expressed by the entire society as
    an important feature of its life.”

    havel @ page 37 potp

  11. To go with a couple from the PW past, here and here is this from the WSJ.

    The Obama administration has issued a federal hunting license to deputize fanatics at any university in America. They will define who gets accused, and on what basis.

    The White House enabled these forces again last week, releasing an Education Department list of 55 colleges that are “under investigation” for possible Title IX violations. Not formally cited but “under investigation.” The list includes such notorious Animal Houses as Catholic University, Swarthmore, Knox College, Carnegie Mellon and Harvard Law School. In truth, every school in America is effectively on the list.

    Make no mistake, universities under constant pressure from the Obama administration and the most driven members of their “communities” will comply and define due process downward. If the liability choice falls between the lawyer brigades at the Holder Justice Department or some 19-year-old student or an assistant professor who didn’t post the course’s “trigger warning,” guess who will get tossed to the Marcusian mobs at Harvard and Vassar?

  12. How is it that Wisconsin’s attorney general hasn’t opened his own investigation into the Democrat district attorney John Chisholm? And why the hell don’t we know the name of the undoubtedly equally partisan John Doe judge?

    Because the way to put an end to this shit is to vote these assholes out of office.

  13. I was wondering if it all started with the way the left got away with all those frivolous lawsuits against Sarah Palin. Many on the left saw nothing wrong with it. I had a left-leaning acquaintance, who is otherwise a smart and fair person, think it was OK since it was “legal” and politics is rough.

    It started with Watergate. And political lawfare is what led Caesar to cross the Rubicon.

    Sure, politics is rough, but do we really want to play for keeps?

  14. Ernst, “the debate is over.” Over, over, over, so over.

    Of course they want to “play” for keeps, they’ve already won the brass ring,

    It’s over.

  15. you have to destroy them or they will destroy us. effin’ proggtaeds.

  16. It’s amazing how quickly this is all accelerating.

  17. I’ve been predicting the Second American Revolution occurring prior to 2025 since the late 80s, but it sucks being proved right. Riots will start in the big cities when the welfare checks fail to show up.

    When the collapse comes, the only universally trade-able currencies will be alcohol and ammo, and the man who can make both will be wealthy.

  18. As soon as either side starts playing for keeps, the game is for keeps. You can play by those rules, or forfeit.

  19. Of course they want to “play” for keeps, they’ve already won the brass ring,
    It’s over.

    Maybe after a little argument.

  20. Weasel Zippers just lost their Google adsense support.

  21. “It’s amazing how quickly all this is accelerating”

    Yes. And when a cop can self-justify shooting a 93 year old woman, there’s absolutely no one alive in the USA today who is safe from ‘our’ ‘protective’ armed police forces.

    And this happened in Texas!

  22. Link didn’t work for me. This one did.

  23. I also think that the shock that Al Gore did not get elected president was another nudge over toward the cliff.

  24. I hesitate to call today’s police cowards but, they do seem rather “cautious”.

    Is it a change in the training or is it that older cops more likely to be military veterans who were able to distinguish a “non-combatant” a little better or at least recognize a real danger.

    Maybe as some Iraq/Afghan veterans become cops we will get an improvement.

  25. Levin was asking people last night what they thought the country would look like in fifty years. From his comments, I think he may be worried that he won’t have time for the article five process.

  26. I didn’t hear that RI Red, but he ought to have such concerns anyhow entirely independent of any comments on the question. It’s simply too obvious a matter to miss. (But in an aside — 50 years? that seems kinda ridiculous in light of our current “global climate change” arguments over projections about merely physical processes we don’t understand while at the same time we’ve got hardly a clue how to physically characterize the workings of the conscious human — or even simpler forms of living beings’– minds.)

  27. He was wondering whether the American people have been so propagandized and the bureaucracy so embedded that there just are not enough people left to overcome the post-constitutional evolution of the country. He read from the end of ameritopia, one of Reagan’s quotes, trying to leave a good spin on it, but I thought I could hear the doubt starting in his mind.

  28. I linked here yesterday an address at AEI given by Michael Ledeen in 1997 on the subject of “Machiavelli for moderns” where in the course of the q&a I think Ledeen was already asking more or less the same question. Now these many years later it looks like we’re much closer to an answer.

  29. Pingback: The Camp Of The Saints

  30. Google ad sense canceled me over a year ago over my (recently re-posted) interview with the ghost of ambassador Stevens.

    They’ll get us all sooner or later.

  31. I should add that they’ve also banned me from youtube. No reversing it. Even had a lawyer try.

    They don’t need a reason. They own the world.

  32. So they are going all out to build their perfect apartheid world.

  33. >They own the world.<

    So did the phone company, Detroit, and IBM, till people went around them.

  34. Lots of content people are already bypassing youtube since the new IP rules came out and the constant mobile-ization of the general layout/UI.

  35. How long before we are banned from blogging? Or forced to comply with so many regulations that it’s impossible?

    I take heart in the historical truths that Palaeomerus cites [‘the phone company, Detroit, and IBM’], but I’m still very worried.

    How can we keep the lines of communication open between us, create Committees Of Correspondence for The Age Of Leftist Hegemony? It is vital that we do since we’re so scattered around the Country.

  36. So did the phone company,

    You don’t mess with TPC.

  37. Bob, I’ve pondered that very thought. I look at some sites like Western Rifle Shooters Association, where they are openly talking about resistance activities. That’s some high profile shit that is surely being monitored right now. At worst, NSA already has a file on everyone; at best, NSA could have a file on everyone very quickly. Encrypted comms probably aren’t, given the state of the art.
    If the shtf, I am sure that most internet comms will be shut down and, because of the ubiquity of the surveillance state, very little can be done unobserved.
    I see only two scenarios: face to face comms (but the risk of infiltration will always be there), and resort to lone wolf action (hard to have a conspiracy of one, and there is no risk of infiltration).
    Of course, this is all only hypothetical because we all know that it will never get that bad. In the meantime, we have an open forum graciously hosted by someone who would never be shut down by his exercise of 1st Amendment rights.