Shutting Up the OppositionAfter the Department of Homeland Security issued a report this past April warning of the dangers of "right wing extremism," Americans for Limited Government filed a Freedom of Information Act request to find out just where Homeland Security got their information. What ALG discovered was that while a similar report on Leftist groups was filled with extensive field research, the report on conservative groups put much of the right-of-center internet world and blogosphere on the government's watch list:
There doesn't appear to have been any deep analysis, because Homeland Security had a predetermined conclusion:
"We expected to receive back some hard-core analysis, some data analysis, looking at crime statistics and current trends that would back up conclusions in the report," said Nathan Mehrens, a news contributor to Americans for Limited Government and a former Labor Department official.
"Instead what we got was a list of URLs to various Web sites, all kinds of news stories across the board," Mehrens told FOX News.
"What a good intelligent reporter would do is they would take that open-source intelligence information and they'd marry it to other things," said James Carafano, a national security expert at the Heritage Foundation. "They might look at a wide variety of statistical data from alcohol tobacco and firearms, FBI. So you look at crime data, arrest data, look at classified material and investigations.
But based on the Homeland Security response to the information request, so far, it doesn't look like that deeper analysis ever happened.
“Not a single study or report was from any government source,” said Wilson. “And again, there was no evidence of any actual active recruitment of ‘disgruntled veterans’ by these groups, no evidence showing that folks who purchase guns or oppose gun-control legislation are necessarily dangerous, and no evidence that the economic downturn or the election of Barack Obama that is fueling any actual ‘resurgence’ of ‘extremism.’”
“And now we know why,” Wilson added, explain, “The background DHS used was not based on credible intelligence sources, reporting, and analysis. Instead, what we found is that the Department was apparently surfing the net to see what news stories happened to turn up to support a pre-determined conclusion,” Wilson explained.
First came the report warning of the "resurgence" or "right wing extremism," then came the Democratic Speaker of the House calling those who protest and demand answers at town hall meetings "un-American and comparing us to Nazis. Then the President of the United States finally weighs in, declaring that his opposition should "stop talking." Literally, the President would like for us to shut up. We can see the direction in which this is already beginning to go.
I have long believed that I was on some sort of "list" which certain of the federal government would be compelled to examine if ever it were determined that people who speak out against the excesses and expanse of the federal government are "dangerous." Now I am certain of that reality, and I do not care in the least. The fact of the matter is that while our friends on the Left can run their mouths about "hope" and "change," their ideals are empty and so is their governance, so they must resort to dragging conservatives through the mud.
A word to these people: If you shut us up, I promise you that millions more will take our place.