Christian Stork: The Megalomania of Aaron Swartz Prosecutor Carmen Ortiz


Massachusetts District U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz (Courtesy: Wikipedia)
Massachusetts District U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz (Courtesy: Wikipedia)

WASHINGTON — In a not-so-stirring defense of academic conglomerate JSTOR, U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz said of Aaron Swartz‘s offenses, “Stealing is stealing whether you use a computer command or a crowbar, and whether you take documents, data or dollars. It is equally harmful to the victim whether you sell what you have stolen or give it away.” While common sense and lore would tend to at least lend more sympathy to Robin Hood- or Jean Valjean-type characters, who might be at least functioning out of some concern for others, Ms. Ortiz remained steadfast in her pursuit of recent “an Hero” Mr. Swartz, trying to see him put in jail for potentially the rest of his life.

Over at WhoWhatWhy Christian Stork does a nice little breakdown of this U.S. attorney’s wading into murky waters of civil asset forfeiture, one particular case in which she agreed to help confiscate a rundown, mom-and-pop Massachusetts motel because because “from 2001 to 2008, .05 [percent of at least 125,000 visitors] were arrested for drug crimes on the property.” This was a theft just like Aaron Swartz’s. Except not it was not a theft in the high-minded name of educating the world’s downtrodden, but in that of fattening the pockets of law enforcement agencies, treating poor drug abusers as criminals, alongside those who might dare house them.

Mr. Stork paints a disturbing picture of a civil asset forfeiture system in which being in debt vis-a-vis a mortgage — meaning that a bank, and its lawyers, has some has some skin in the game — means that the owners of this motel would have been in an even better position to disavow their affiliation with three handfuls of guest drug offenses. But alas they ran out of lawyer money, and the government all at once took five decades of family property worth $1.5 million.

Mr. Stork also outlines a direct financial, not an external ethical, motive for law enforcement to take on these kinds of civil asset forfeitures. He cites the testimony of a DEA agent claiming that federal attorneys never go after anything with less than $50,000 in equity. Additionally, local law enforcement, for cooperating with the feds, can look to take home up to 80 percent of what was seized. That’s a major incentive to turn a blind eye to a violation of property rights. In fact it’s more of an incentive to turn a blind eye to property-rights violations than the Pirate Party ever had: It’s money straight to the bank!

The same prosecutor, Carmen Ortiz, who sought to lock up Aaron Swartz for his failure to respect property rights of the proprietors of academic information also sought to seize a family’s business because an extreme minority of their clientele used drugs. Mr. Stork’s article makes clear that this was ultimately the DEA’s initiative, with Ms. Ortiz simply acting as its lawyer. But that doesn’t change that this U.S. attorney lacks any consistency in her modus operandi. It’s pretty obvious that the low rates for staying at this establishment, Motel Caswell, made it an even more tempting target.

Ms. Ortiz’s office released a statement about the seizure, saying: “The government believed that this was an important case . . . because of the deterrent message it sends to others who may turn a blind eye to crime occurring at their place of business.” But Mr. Stork shows this is shmoax because local crime rates dictate that there would have been just as much of a rationale for seizing nearby Walmart, Home Depot, Applebees, Motel 6 and IHOP. But those are large businesses, and no matter how many people shoot up or each other inside, they’ll have the lawyers to keep the whomever or the DEA at bay.

ROMNEY USES COCAINE; American People to Romney Campaign: Go For The Nostrils!

DENVER, COLO. — Americans were excited today about reports deep within the bowels of the Romney campaign that the former Massachusetts governor is ready to go after President Obama’s use of marawana and cocaine as a teenager.

“I mean, this is a guy who admitted to cocaine use,” says a Romney adviser to Buzzfeed, “had a sweetheart deal with his house in Chicago, and was associated and worked with Rod Blagojevich to get Valerie Jarrett appointed to the Senate,” adding, “The bottom line is there’ll be counterattacks.”

President Obama has made a point of discussing his own history of using cocaine, which he refers to by its crass street name of “blow;” as well as his inhaling the vapours of the ever-popular devil weed itself. His popular autobiography, “The Audacity of Hope,” whose sales are his primary source of income — second only to “cash money” reportedly obtained selling automatic firearms to Mexican drug cartels — is a book basically about how the 44th president of the United States loved using drugs. President Obama has met desperate, repeated online pleas he legalize recreational cannabis use with guffaws and denials that he would act to liberate from a kyriarchy the American people, now arbitrarily incarcerated at rates unrivaled in the developed world.

Despite many reports, including out of Forbes magazine, that Portugal’s drug legalization policy has decimated that country’s drug abuse, Gil Kerlikowski, head of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, has stated that legalization does not combat the ills of illicit drug use. And last month, before Congress, the head of the Drug Enforcement Agency, Michele Leonhart, reiterated her administration’s commitment to utter hysteria and lack of focus on a public health crisis.

Before finally admitting, after much pressure, that heroin was more addictive than cannabis, Ms. Leonhart first characterized the matter of whether heroin is worse for an individual’s health than cannabis as “subjective.” This admission followed deliberately dishonest exchanges with Democratic Representative Jared Polis of Colorado:

REPRESENTATIVE JARED POLIS (D-CO): Is crack [a street name for free-based cocaine – ed] worse for a person than marijuana?

MICHELE LEONHART: I believe all illegal drugs are bad.

REP. POLIS: Is methamphetamine worse for somebody’s health than marijuana?

MS. LEONHART: I don’t think any illegal drug is good for —

REP. POLIS: Is heroin worse for someone’s health than marijuana?

MS. LEONHART: Again, all [sic] the drugs, they are illegal.

The administration’s enforcement strategies square well with the Romney campaign’s assessment of the president pro-drug attitudes, the unmistakable products of hedonistic, if-it-feels-good-do-it ’60s culture. Meanwhile the deputy director of NORML, a shady druggie front group, longs for the good old days under President George Bush when Californian sludge distributors operating under the guise of “medical clinics” “helping people in pain” could operate with relative impunity, writing this week, “Many of California’s most prominent and well-respected medical cannabis dispensaries and related facilities — including Oaksterdam University, Berkeley Patients Group, and Harborside Health Center (HHC) — flourished under the George W. Bush administration. But they’ll be lucky to survive President Barack Obama’s first term.”

Medical health professionals consulted off-the-record by The Internet Chronicle speculate that President Obama’s laser obsession with his administration’s present drug enforcement strategies is likely the result of the delusion and vigor associated, they say, “unmistakably” with cocaine psychosis.

After bragging to high school students in December of 2007 about how cool drugs are, then Senator Obama became the focus of the popular prohibitionist scrutiny. Obama’s candor with students came on the heels of the leak of an audiotape of President George W. Bush citing a responsibility to America’s youth to prevaricate about his own drug use — not to protect his own career, of course, but to shield them from the enormous influence the president of the United States has had on American teenagers since the Founding Fathers.

Years ago the Romney campaign pounced on the opportunity to praise President Bush’s bold, private confession to smoking weed. Mr. Romney said then, “He said when he was young and irresponsible, he was young and irresponsible, and he left it at that. And I think that in order to leave the best possible example for our kids, we’re probably wisest not to talk about our own indiscretions in great detail.”

Mr. Romney’s strategy is “simple yet elegant,” says Political Science Professor Alan Abramowitz of Emory University, adding, “It allows the candidate to bask in the veneer of family values while remaining duplicitous about that bottle of Coca-Cola he is rumored to have enjoyed, covertly, while on missionary work in France on behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”

IMPORTANT SCIENTIFIC DEMONSTRATION RE: ALL DRUGS

Washington, D.C., Tx–An independent study by the US Government was conducted on a stovetop Friday, twenty years ago. The results are inconclusive by logic of the critically-flawed scientific method, but based on what the President’s top aides are saying, stand firm. The dependent variables of the study were not verified and its results are taken as fact based on the government’s good track record of providing honest, objective, Christian scientific research.

The evidence in this photo suggests dope addicts have begun using guns as drugs, possibly by ingesting bullets anally in a new and creative effort to "get high"
The evidence in this photo suggests dope addicts have begun using guns as drugs, possibly by ingesting bullets anally in a new and creative effort to "get high"

“All drugs are the same,” said one expert. “Dope’ll kill ya,” said another. The men wished to remain anonymous because like all government officials, they are huge pussies and don’t stand behind their own words.

WARNING: THE FOLLOWING VIDEO IS INTENDED FOR MATURE, MALE AUDIENCES ONLY. IF YOUR CHILDREN SEE THIS AND START FRYING UP EGGS TO GET HIGH, IT IS YOUR FAULT BECAUSE YOU ARE A BAD PARENT UNWORTHY OF OWNING CHILDREN.

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Click here to watch Bill Hicks make fun of this at The Elf Wax Times’ Bill Hicks Hall of Fame, featuring Bill Hicks!