Puoi sempre contare sul governo per trarre vantaggio da una crisi, legittima o fabbricata.
Questa pandemia di coronavirus non fa eccezione.
This coronavirus pandemic is no exception.
Not only are the federal and state governments unraveling the
constitutional fabric of the nation with lockdown mandates that are
sending the economy into a tailspin and wreaking havoc with our
liberties, but they are also rendering the citizenry fully dependent on
the government for financial handouts, medical intervention, protection
Everything I have warned about for years—government overreach,
invasive surveillance, martial law, abuse of powers, militarized police,
weaponized technology used to track and control the citizenry, and so
on—has coalesced into this present moment.
Deploying the same strategy it used with 9/11 to acquire greater
powers under the USA Patriot Act, the police state—a.k.a. the shadow
government, a.k.a. the Deep State—has been anticipating this moment for
years, quietly assembling a wish list of lockdown powers that could be
trotted out and approved at a moment’s notice.
It should surprise no one, then, that the Trump Administration has asked Congress to allow it to suspend parts of the Constitution whenever it deems it necessary during this coronavirus pandemic and “other” emergencies.
It’s that “other” emergencies part
that should particularly give you pause, if not spur you to immediate
action (by action, I mean a loud and vocal, apolitical, nonpartisan
outcry and sustained, apolitical, nonpartisan resistance).
In fact, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has been quietly
trotting out and testing a long laundry list of terrifying powers that
override the Constitution.
We’re talking about lockdown powers (at both the federal and state
level): the ability to suspend the Constitution, indefinitely detain
American citizens, bypass the courts, quarantine whole communities or
segments of the population, override the First Amendment by outlawing
religious gatherings and assemblies of more than a few people, shut down
entire industries and manipulate the economy, muzzle dissidents, “stop
and seize any plane, train or automobile to
stymie the spread of contagious disease,” reshape financial markets,
create a digital currency (and thus further restrict the use of cash),
determine who should live or die…
You’re getting the picture now, right?
These are powers the police state would desperately like to make permanent.
Bear in mind, however, that these powers the Trump Administration, acting on orders from the police state, are officially asking
Congress to recognize and authorize barely scratch the surface of the
far-reaching powers the government has already unilaterally claimed for
Unofficially, the police state has been riding roughshod
over the rule of law for years now without any pretense of being reined
in or restricted in its power grabs by Congress, the courts or the
This current pandemic is a test to see whether the
Constitution—and our commitment to the principles enshrined in the Bill
of Rights—can survive a national crisis and true state of emergency.
Here’s what we know: whatever the so-called threat to the
nation—whether it’s civil unrest, school shootings, alleged acts of
terrorism, or the threat of a global pandemic in the case of
COVID-19—the government has a tendency to capitalize on the nation’s
heightened emotions, confusion and fear as a means of extending the
reach of the police state.
This coronavirus epidemic, which has brought China’s Orwellian surveillance out of the shadows and caused Italy to declare a nationwide lockdown threatens to bring the American Police State out into the open on a scale we’ve not seen before.
Every day brings a drastic new set of restrictions by government bodies (most have been delivered by way of executive orders) at the local, state and federal level that are eager to flex their muscles for the so-called “good” of the populace.
This is where we run the risk of this whole fly-by-night operation going completely off the rails.
It’s one thing to attempt an experiment in social distancing in order
to flatten the curve of this virus because we can’t afford to risk
overwhelming the hospitals and exposing the most vulnerable in the
nation to unavoidable loss of life scenarios. However, there’s a fine
line between strongly worded suggestions for citizens to voluntarily
stay at home and strong-armed house arrest orders with penalties in place for non-compliance.
More than three-quarters of all Americans have now been ordered to stay at home and that number is growing as more states fall in line.
Schools have canceled physical classes, many for the remainder of the academic year.
Many of the states have banned gatherings of more than 10 people.
At least three states (Nevada, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania) have ordered non-essential businesses to close.
In Washington, DC, residents face 90 days in jail and a $5,000 fine if
they leave their homes during the coronavirus outbreak. Residents of
Maryland, Hawaii and Washington state also risk severe penalties of up
to a year in prison and a $5,000 fine for violating the stay-at-home
orders. Violators in Alaska could face jail time and up to $25,000 in fines.
Kentucky residents are prohibited from traveling outside the state, with a few exceptions.
New York City, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S., is offering its Rikers Island prisoners $6 an hour to help dig mass graves.
In San Francisco, cannabis dispensaries were included among the essential businesses allowed to keep operating during the city-wide lockdown.
New Jersey’s governor canceled gatherings of any number,
including parties, weddings and religious ceremonies, and warned the
restrictions could continue for weeks or months. One city actually
threatened to prosecute residents who spread false information about the virus.
Oregon banned all nonessential social and recreational gatherings, regardless of size.
Rhode Island has given police the go-ahead to pull over anyone with New York license plates to record their contact information and order them to self-quarantine for 14 days.
Rhode Island National Guard Military Police direct a motorist
with New York license plates to a checkpoint, March 28, 2020, David
Goldman | AP
South Carolina’s police have been empowered to break up any public gatherings of more than three people.
Of course, there are exceptions to all of these stay-at-home orders (in
more than 30 states and counting), the longest of which runs until June
10. Essential workers (doctors, firefighters, police and grocery store
workers) can go to work. Everyone else will have to fit themselves into a
variety of exceptions in order to leave their homes: for grocery runs,
doctor visits, to get exercise, to visit a family member, etc.
Throughout the country, more than 14,000 “Citizen-Soldiers” of
the National Guard have been mobilized to support the states and the
federal government in their fight against the coronavirus.
Thus far, we have not breached the Constitution’s crisis point: martial
law has yet to be overtly imposed (although an argument could be made
to the contrary given the militarized nature of the American police
It’s just a matter of time before all hell breaks loose.
If this is not the defining point at which we cross over into all-out
totalitarianism, then it is at a minimum a test to see how easily we
Generally, the government has to show a compelling state interest
before it can override certain critical rights such as free speech,
assembly, press, search and seizure, etc. Most of the time, it lacks
that compelling state interest, but it still manages to violate those
rights, setting itself up for legal battles further down the road.
These lockdown measures—on the right of the people to peaceably
assemble, to travel, to engage in commerce, etc.—unquestionably restrict
fundamental constitutional rights, which might pass muster for a short
period of time, but can it be sustained for longer stretches legally?
That’s the challenge before us, of course, if these days and weeks potentially stretch into months-long quarantines.
At the moment, the government believes it has a compelling
interest—albeit a temporary one—in restricting gatherings, assemblies
and movement in public in order to minimize the spread of this virus.
The key point is this: while we may tolerate these restrictions on
our liberties in the short term, we should never fail to be on guard
lest these one-time constraints become a slippery slope to a total
What we must guard against, more than ever before, is the
tendency to become so accustomed to our prison walls—these lockdowns,
authoritarian dictates, and police state tactics justified as necessary
for national security—that we allow the government to keep having its
way in all things, without any civic resistance or objections being
Most of all, don’t be naïve: the government will use this crisis to expand its powers far beyond the reach of the Constitution.
That’s how it starts.
Travel too far down that slippery slope, and there will be no turning back.
As I make clear in my book “Battlefield America: The War on the American People,” if you wait to speak out—stand up—and resist until the government’s lockdowns impact your freedoms personally, it could be too late.
Just because we’re fighting an unseen enemy in the form of a virus
doesn’t mean we have to relinquish every shred of our humanity, our
common sense, or our freedoms to a nanny state that thinks it can do a
better job of keeping us safe.
Whatever we give up willingly now—whether it’s basic human decency,
the ability to manage our private affairs, the right to have a say in
how the government navigates this crisis, or the few rights still left
to us that haven’t been disemboweled in recent years by a power-hungry
police state—we won’t get back so easily once this crisis is past.
The government never cedes power willingly.
Neither should we.