By Joy Overbeck
Increasingly, as the concentric circles of perfidy swirl around the White House like filthy water down a drain, there is tyranny. The government we pay for has turned on us, the body politic, as if it were a savage autoimmune disease attacking our most vital tissues. That is, our Constitutional right to express our views as free citizens without the hounds of IRS hell on our heels.
How did it happen? How could this administration think it would get away with persecuting and silencing those who disagree with its march to power? The time-honored template of the dictatorial impulse is no secret. Tyranny always progresses a bite at a time. Caesar cast his eye about the known world, coveted what he saw, and began nibbling away. Nobody stopped him. Hitler sank his teeth into a nation here, a nation there and looked around for reaction. Nobody cared enough to do much about it.
Here, the exploratory nibbles have become extremely ambitious through the past four-plus years until now they’ve escalated to bloody chunks. But there were warnings. Only four months after Obama’s inauguration, the Department of Homeland Security issued a “threat assessment” fingering “rightwing extremism” as a danger to the nation. Remember? This official warning to law enforcement officials says “rightwing extremism in the United States” includes groups that reject federal authority in favor of state or local authority, and “may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as immigration or abortion.”
Because the report also included returning war veterans in its extremist roster, there ensued a flurry of indignation. But nothing happened. Some of these dangerous groups became Tea Parties and Patriot cabals. We now know that not long after this report, the IRS took up the DHS cudgel by systematically oppressing these vicious “militias” via punishing audits and delay or denial of tax-exemption. By harassing perhaps 500 such groups and eliminating much of the opposition in this aggressive and deliberate way, IRS toadies may also have helped Obama win the election.
Meanwhile, as the secretary of Homeland Security was learning she could do just about any lawless thing she liked without fear of reprisal, so was the president. And the attorney general. When the administration banned drilling in the Gulf of Mexico after the 2010 BP oil spill, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal sued, worried it could kill 20,000 more jobs and up to $135 million in wages. The feds fought the lawsuit and lost twice. The Obama government promptly created a new moratorium and redoubled its fight against its citizens.
A judge ruled that the Obama Administration acted in contempt by continuing its ban after the policy was struck down by the courts. And nothing happened. Contempt, the administration learned, is toothless; but government power is a Rottweiler.
And so it was no big deal when in June of 2012 Attorney General Eric Holder became the first sitting member of a president’s cabinet in American history to be held in contempt of Congress. He had defied a Congressional subpoena to disclose internal communications about the Fast and Furious gun-peddling operation that put guns in the hands of criminal cartels who killed border patrol agent Brian Terry and hundreds of Mexican nationals. Surprise, surprise: Holder’s own Justice Department declined to pursue criminal action, although the vote was an astonishing 255-67 against the AG. Mr. Obama helped Holder thwart the Congress by insisting presidential immunity covered his faithful sidekick. And nobody noticed that Holder is not actually the president.
In the current persecution, victims continue to come forward. Not only Tea Party, but Christian pro-life groups, even Billy Graham and his son Franklin Graham’s charities, and Jewish groups aiding Israel’s settlements. Note the recurring theme: all are ordinary citizens opposed to Mr. Obama’s plans for our nation.
The Washington Free Beacon found five pro-Israel charities that were aggressively audited after White House friendlies like the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) accused them of opposing Obama’s 2009 dictate that Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu stop settlement across the pre-1967 “Green Line.” The ADC filed legal complaints urging the IRS and the Treasury Department to investigate groups “allegedly raising funds for the development of illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.” Audits followed.
Of course there is nothing in the least illegal about what the charities did. But it’s now apparently illegal to disagree with America’s ruler. This is where the fear comes in. The Free Beacon also reports that many of the groups with which they spoke “asked to remain anonymous out of fear of political retaliation…” It would appear the IRS is now itself a domestic terror organization waging war against the enemies of the state: conservatives, Christians and Jews. And the people fear their government.
“An elective despotism was not the government we fought for.”
— Thomas Jefferson