While it hasn’t yet taken over a major party, the Occupy movement has successfully exposed the oppressive fascist police state that has reared its ugly head in the past year. If you want to see what tyranny looks like, consider what happened to the estimated 75,000 protesters who took on the military-industrial complex at last weekend’s NATO summit in Chicago, after the mayor revoked protesters’ attempts to lawfully assemble.
-At the front of a police line surrounding a NATO gathering, police suddenly start beating unarmed protesters with batons in an eerie video resembling police at Egypt’s Tahrir Square.
-While covering the protests, credentialed journalists are attacked by police who use bicycles as weapons.
-After a day of covering the protests, three livestreamers are surrounded by Chicago police at gunpoint and have their car and property impounded without cause.
But the oppression isn’t coming from just the police. The federal government is now openly embracing totalitarian tactics in suppressing political dissent, including unwarranted surveillance, denial of due process rights, and even psychological warfare:
-FBI agents pressured a group of anarchists in Ohio to blow up a bridge on May Day, going so far as to pick out a target and provide the explosives. They were held without bond after their arrest. White supremacists in Florida planning an actual terrorist attack at a May Day protest were outed by state police, and ignored by federal law enforcement. Their bond was set at $500.
-The Department of Homeland Security assembled almost 800 pages of documents detailing possibly unconstitutional monitoring of the Occupy movement, and collaboration with city governments.
-Congress voted down an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that would have prohibited the federal government from detaining American citizens indefinitely, without trial, based on pure suspicion. They did so exactly one day after US District Judge Katherine Forrest struck down NDAA detention provisions as unconstitutional. Congress also passed a law allowing protesters to be arrested on felony charges anywhere where there is secret service protection, and is actively seeking to lift a ban on the use of propaganda on American citizens.
-The Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision to allow invasive and humiliating strip searches for any arrest, no matter the charge (like protesting).