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On #OregonUnderAttack and #YallQaeda: Stop Calling Everyone a Terrorist

Unfounded terrorism allegations are the health of the state.

ProtestOregon LiveA self-proclaimed militia group led by members of the Cliven Bundy family has occupied a federal outpost in the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and vowed to stay put until their demands are met. As Ed Krayewski notes, the armed ranchers have rallied in opposition to the prosecutions of Dwight and Steven Hammond, who will go to jail Monday for starting controlled fires on their own property they claimed were necessary to avert a greater disaster.

Authorities are closely monitoring the situation. Ryan Bundy told The Oregonian that the militia had no plans to use violence except as a last resort if confronted by the police:

In phone interviews from inside the occupied building Saturday night, Ammon Bundy and his brother, Ryan Bundy, said they are not looking to hurt anyone. But they would not rule out violence if police tried to remove them, they said.

"The facility has been the tool to do all the tyranny that has been placed upon the Hammonds," Ammon Bundy said.

"We're planning on staying here for years, absolutely," he added. "This is not a decision we've made at the last minute."

Meanwhile, a whole bunch of left-leaning people on Twitter are accusing the militia of engaging in domestic terrorism. The hashtags for the story are #OregonUnderAttack and #YallQaeda—as if the Bundy family’s activities thus far have something in common with a terrorist attack perpetrated by Islamic radicals.

Gawker, of course, is running wild with the metaphor:

With the domestic terrorism situation that’s currently under way in Oregon being almost entirely ignored by local and federal law enforcement, the people have taken to the social media airwaves to call a spade a spade.

While #OregonUnderAttack was trending for most of the day on Sunday, another tag soon followed as a way to combat the reluctance to call a bunch of white men waving around guns at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge terrorists: #YallQaeda. The tag is dumb, yes, but so are these people.

Domestic terrorists? Really? And here I was thinking liberals were just as skeptical as libertarians about the prudence of labelling everything and everyone a terrorist. Don’t they remember that every time someone brands someone else a terrorist, the Patriot Act gets a dozen pages longer? Government power relies upon such unfounded suspicions.

Keep in mind that the ranchers haven’t taken hostages, damaged property, or hurt anyone. The previous standoff between federal authorities and the Bundy family was resolved peacefully. It’s possible the situation at the wildlife headquarters escalates into something horrifically violent, but it seems wildly premature and speculative to assert that it will.

This didn’t stop Vox’s Jennifer Williams, whose Voxsplainer on #OregonUnderAttack concludes with a section titled “How dangerous is the situation?”

As mentioned earlier, several of the men behind this takeover were also involved in the standoff in Nevada in 2014, which very nearly ended in bloodshed as hundreds of heavily armed militia members stood off with federal agents. Thankfully, disaster was averted when federal authorities made the decision to pack up and leave without any prior announcement.

That may not necessarily be the case this time around. In fact, at least one militia member seems to be expecting things to go very differently this time. Jon Ritzheimer, the former US Marine whose anti-Muslim rhetoric and activities raised alarms with the FBI in November 2015, posted a video to YouTube on December 31 in which he seemed to be saying goodbye to his family and explaining the reason why he felt compelled to fight the US government in Oregon. 

Williams’ also puts the words tyranny and patriots in scarequotes in the very first paragraph of her article, which she promoted on Twitter with the manifestly false caption, “The media wasn't covering this. So I did: The Oregon militia standoff, explained.”

A more responsible left-leaning commentator, the historian of student activism Angus Johnston, expressed some misgivings on Twitter about such broad use of the term terrorists, but nonetheless maintained that the ranchers’ “threats of political violence against state agents strike me as unambiguously terroristic.”

They strike me as unambiguously foolish and crazy. But keep in mind that the origins of the current standoff can be traced to the government’s treatment of the Hammonds, who were re-sentenced to a mandatory minimum of five years in prison under federal anti-terrorism laws—even though the initial judge in the case said such a lengthy sentence for two counts of arson would “shock his conscience.”

In any case, everyone who opposes government-sanctioned violence should remember that unfounded concerns about terrorism are the health of the state. Lowering the bar for what counts as terrorism is not a winning move for critics of authoritarianism and unconstitutional exercises of police power.

Photo Credit: Oregon Live

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  • See Double You||

    But they're rightwing beetaggers! They don't have the right to protest! Drone 'em! Shoot 'em! MURDER 'EM($)@*&)##*%^!

    /social media progs

  • Bubba Jones||

    Didn't these guys already serve their original sentence?

    That doesn't sound like a terrorist.

    Is it because they are white?

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Don't confuse the Hammonds with the Bundys

  • Jerryskids||

    The Hammonds were sentenced and served their time for setting fires - which they claimed were for burning off underbrush and the government claimed were for covering up the Lincoln conspiracy or some such - and then haled back into court and ordered to serve a second sentence by a judge who decided they hadn't been sentenced forcefully enough. It's in the link near the end of the article anout them being resentenced.

    And yes, the Hammonds resentencing had to do with the fact that the gov pursued the fire-setting as a terroristic threat, just the same as filching a candy bar or jaywalking or spitting on the sidewalk is now a terroristic threat. I think you can already get sentenced (a la Martha Stewart) for conspiracy and making false statements regarding underlying charges you are found Not Guilty on. When they start automatically tacking on the terroristic, you're really being ball-squeezed to plead guilty to whatever they said you did regardless of whether or not you did it. The state doesn't like it if they catch you committing a crime but you really bring out the vindictiveness if they catch you not committing a crime they accused you of.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Yeah, fair enough. I thought Bubba was addressing this:

    Meanwhile, a whole bunch of left-leaning people on Twitter are accusing the militia of engaging in domestic terrorism.

    And perhaps confusing those who took over the building with the Ranchers who served the sentence.

  • The Beer Guy||

    Ammy5469 what does being a whore have to do with this discussion.

  • Jurisrachel||

    We called that a "plea hammer," in my defense-attorney years. :/

  • Swiss Servator||

    "Trial Tax"

  • Mama La Pinga||

    It's because they are white that they are still alive.

    Had armed black people taken over the same federal building, the gob-mint would had carpet bombed the place.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Why would black people occupy a shack in the middle of nowhere?

  • Don't Be Naive Arthur||

    Like those damn black Branch Davidians

  • Seamus||

    Exactly. Just like when the American Indian Movement occupied the Bureau of Indian Affairs building in DC in 1972. I forget, though, how many Indians were killed when the pigs carpet-bombed that building to end the occupation? Oh, that's right: the same number that was killed when armed black militants took over Willard Straight Hall at Cornell in 1969.

  • Centrist||

    Or Muslims!

  • WillMG||

    We have a bunch of government bureaucrats who don't know what double jeopardy is.

  • Tionico||

    Yes they did..... despite that they should NOT have had to. No arson was committted.. arson involved buildings, and none were. Out of control FedGov on a power trip.

    Nor did they have any input in that second resentencing "hearing"... the judge simplyb decided then were to serve more time. THAT is double jeopardy as well as denial of representation.
    THESE are the kinds of tyrannical FedGov moves the militia are defending against.

  • retiredfire||

    Calling everyone you disagree with a terrorist is the best recruiting tool ISIS has.

  • See Double You||

    And from fucking Facebook:

    White privilege means getting to call your domestic terror organization a militia.

    Seriously, is this what brain damage looks like?

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Minority privilege means getting to misuse the word "organization".

  • See Double You||

    What's hilarious is that the Occupy Movement, which this idiot supported, was mostly white people who trespassed and caused all kinds of property damage while threatening others with violence.

    "White privilege" only applies to those who hold opposing political views.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I'm going to bring that up if I have to engage another idiot.

    A side note: I wonder how many people have been raped or sexually assaulted at this protest. That was a big problem at some Occupy locations.

  • Akira||

    "That was a big problem at some Occupy locations."

    The Koch brothers personally infiltrated the peaceful OWS camps in disguise and committed these crimes as a false flag!!

    /prog

  • Rt. Hon. Judge Woodrow Chipper||

    I wonder how many people have been raped or sexually assaulted at this protest. That was a big problem at some Occupy locations.

    And the Koch Brothers did nothing to stop it.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    You know who else trespassed and caused property damage while threatening others with violence?

  • Hamster of Doom||

    They all want turkey.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I read that as "Bumpy", which works too.

  • Social Justice is neither||

    Every BlackLivesMatters protest anywhere.

  • Kevin Sorbos Manful Locks||

    The Hardy Boys?

  • gaoxiaen||

    Scooby Doo?

  • Don't Be Naive Arthur||

    And if it wasn't for you meddling kids & your mutt here, I woulda gotten away with it!

  • Procrastinatus||

    The King and Queen from Tangled?

  • Glide||

    Dennis the Menace?

  • Fredrick Douglas||

    Alcoholic Alice in Wonderland?

  • retiredfire||

    ISIS?

  • lap83||

    Also, getting to call a militia terrorism is a privilege of people who don't have to worry about terrorism

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    And here I was thinking liberals were just as skeptical as libertarians about the prudence of labelling everything and everyone a terrorist.

    Reason bless their hearts, the left has long loved to apply to their domestic demons what others would use against foreign threats. (Think Ruby Ridge and Waco.) There's a reason they're using "terrorism" and it's because they believe they can ride that wave to disarmament.

    Now, however, is probably not the best time to be defining down the term.

  • F. Christmas Ape, Jr.||

    It's terrorism all the way down!

  • See Double You||

    Leftists find that they love the military, NSA, and unbridled executive power when they are used against their political enemies.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I got into it on Facebook with a high school classmate about this.
    Apparently, if you're trespassing AND armed, it's terrorism.

    So I dropped this link on him, and the entire post disappeared.

  • RAHeinlein||

    Game. Set. Match.

  • See Double You||

    Good. I'm very tempted to get into it with that person I quoted above.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Occupying public buildings is a tried and true left-wing tactic that's been practiced for decades. But animists that they are, the fact that guns are involved makes it unacceptable even though regardless of whether you are armed or not you're purposefully inviting a violent reaction from the state in order to create sympathy for your cause.

    So in other words, and this is truly shocking, they're all being a bunch of self-important hypocrites while cheering for the summary execution of these goofballs by their beloved government.

  • Jerryskids||

    So Wounded Knee was only supported by the right-wing extremists?

  • Tionico||

    no worries, FedGov would be just as happy to fire upon unarmed occupiers as armed.... probably more likely to, as the unarmed are rather unlikely to return fire... and these men will NOT fire unless fired upon.

    but then we have Waco, don't we? Yes, the guys in the compound were armed.. so what? Janet Reno and her Boys opened fire with their tank, and other big guns, and torched the place with a whole bunch of unarmed peaceful folks inside.

  • The Hyperbole||

    Attorney General Eric Holder may have been armed
    They cite old student archives which allege that Holder and his fellow protestors were 'armed'
    In their report, however, the students were 'armed with pillowcases and sheets'.

    No fan of Holders but this seems fairly weak.

    (bolding The Hyperbole's)

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    It was a thought exercise more than anything else.

    He doesn't deny it, does he?

  • The Hyperbole||

    I don't know what he has to say about it, if anything. And I'm not saying that he didn't do this, or that he is not the piece of shit he appears to be. I get annoyed by these all too common articles that make bold assertions in the headline/lede and then don't back up (or worse, contradict) them in the rest of the piece. Call me crazy but I don't like dishonesty even when it might help my case.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    It was a joke.

    The Hyperbole doesn't deny fucking sheep. You haven't had a need to deny that until just now, but if you do, you look guilty.

    Seriously, though, this was an exercise in thought, nothing else (and it was very effective). I'm not asserting anything with that link. There was bullshit leaking everywhere, and I plugged it up. It inevitably leak from somewhere else tomorrow, but that's another day.

  • The Hyperbole||

    Oh, I've had to 'deny' fucking sheep plenty of times.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Ewe set me up.

  • The Hyperbole||

    "I was just helping that sheep over the fence, your honor."

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    That's why the Scottish are so into it. Get one of them next to a sea cliff, and you get all the the pushback that you could ever dream of.

  • ||

    Ewe set me up.

    A nice one.

  • Rational Exhuberance||

    Look at the picture. He was armed with a hair-don't.

  • Kevin Sorbos Manful Locks||

    That is a magnificent do.

  • retiredfire||

    Noticed the article said Holder had been "cleared of wrongdoing" in Fast and Furious.
    That's not how I remember it - more like was protected by 0blama invoking executive privilege over documents, on a subject he claimed to know nothing about.
    N.B. 0blama said he was "working under the radar" on gun control when president elect, and has not given up on using subterfuge when it comes to eviscerating the Bill of Rights.

  • Robby's Hair||

    You knocked this one of the park, boss.

  • Robby Soave||

    Sweet.

  • GILMORE™||

    "here I was thinking liberals were just as skeptical as libertarians about the prudence of labelling everything and everyone a terrorist. Don’t they remember that every time someone brands someone else a terrorist, the Patriot Act gets a dozen pages longer? Government power relies upon such unfounded suspicions'"

    I can't tell if Herr Coiffure is being facetious or misses his own point.

  • Brian||

    Terrorism is used to describe violence you hate.

    Other words are used to describe violence you like. Such as "cops", "military", "social worker", etc.

  • dchang0||

    and "community organizing...."

  • GILMORE™||

    THESE MILITIA TYPES ARE INSANE AND OVER-DEFENSIVE WHICH IS WHY THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD JUST ROUND UP ANY OPPOSITION AND KILL THEM

    #ProgLogic

  • Crusty Juggler||

    I guess I'll be the one to say it: Ban the Bundy's.

  • sarcasmic||

    Married With Children isn't as entertaining as it used to be.

  • DenverJ||

    But Christina Applegate is still easy on the eyes.

  • Agammamon||

    So is Katey Sagal. Even Bearse has aged well. I was going to make a snarky comment about her wearing the middle-aged lesbian look well, but . . .

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Bearse is a class act. I can't say that enough.

    She was a decade ahead of Rosie and Ellen, and didn't demand shit from anyone.

  • DenverJ||

    I like her voice work on Futurama

  • DenverJ||

    Katie Sagal that is, i don't what Bearse is doing now a days

  • Rhywun||

    I think she was already out of the spotlight before declaring - which helps.

    Caught some Married with Children the other day - it's funny as hell and more so because it wouldn't get off the drawing board today.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Out since '93, MwC ran til June '97.

    Like I said, a class act.

  • Rhywun||

    Interesting - I did not know that. Thanks

  • Juice||

    Just not with her shirt off.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    Finally. I was wondering why Reason was ignoring this topic. Fucking cosmos.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Poor little Proggies....their pants-shitting hissy-fit being knocked off the front page by what may be the opening salvos of World War III.

    HA HA HA HA! HA HA HA HA! HA HA HA HA HA HA!

  • Crusty Juggler||

    America needs a very visible presence, including boots on the ground, to get in the middle of this fight to stop it from getting worse.

  • Fredd||

    I'd prefer boobs on the ground.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Juice||

    severed?

  • Rhywun||

    Which side are we on?

  • Hamster of Doom||

    Ours. It's complicated.

  • Rhywun||

    I like our side. Carry on, Pentagon.

  • Rhywun||

    Stern words were tweeted.

  • retiredfire||

    More like the opening salvos in a real Civil War - where both sides are attempting to dominate the country, not one where one side wanted to dominate the other, that just wanted to secede.

  • Fredd||

    Speaking of terrorism, we always knew Nigel Farage had a screw loose, but now the wheels have come off for the UKIP leader. Uh, literally.

    Unclear whether it was done by an angry immigrant with a lug wrench or a fan of great Samuel L Jackson/Ben Affleck dramas. "This bankruptcy has a life of its own", indeed.

  • Juice||

    we always knew Nigel Farage had a screw loose, but now the wheels have come off for the UKIP leader

    And why the hell wasn't that the headline?

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Well, the police did confirm that it was "foul play".

  • DenverJ||

    Defining terrorism down has been the norm since at least 9/11. Any group, foreign or domestic, that opposes the goals of the US government is now called a "terrorist".
    And we all know that "terrorists" don't get public sympathy, jury trials, can be executed by drone, etc.

  • creech||

    "Paging Janet Reno. Janet Reno please report to the Anti-terrorist desk."

  • JeremyR||

    Uh, since when is the left wary of calling people terrorists? They only hate that label when it comes to labeling Islamists.

    They are more than happy at throwing the word around at anyone who leans right. They've been calling tea party members that for years.

    Which is why I think it's so stupid for Republicans to be so harsh on anti-terrorist measures, since Democrats are just champing at the bit to use them against Republicans.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    Only a cosmo would think that way. Way to let the terrorists win, cosmo.

    /Rotherham!!

  • XM||

    Fun fact - according to the FBI, the vast majority of "domestic" terror groups are leftists. How do I know this? Because leftists use this stat on the internet to proudly show that most Muslims are terrorists in the US.

    Seriously, 70% of criminals who would shoot me to death on the street would vote for the democrat party in any election. Most gun criminals in this country are leftists.

  • XM||

    are not

  • ||

    these people are assholes and deserve the scorn they are recieving. Eeven if their complaints are legit and they feel the need to protest, even to go so far as "occupying" a Federal building. you dont show up to do so armed and using terms like "operational security" when refusing to answer questions by the media. They are MORONS who have seen Braveheart way too many times.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    You tell 'em, General Armchair. How's the front on Twitter going today? I heard it gets deadly.

  • Agammamon||

    Yes, far better to use words like 'Black Power' and 'revolutionary struggle'.

  • GILMORE™||

    "you dont show up to do so armed and using terms like "operational security" when refusing to answer questions by the media. '

    So what you're saying is that they're just like a leftist Black Bloc, only instead of wearing pictures of Ak47s and spouting Marxist Revolutionary Gibberish, they carry actual rifles and make simple statements that they mean?

  • ||

    if you dont understand the difference between some hipster douche bag wearing a t shirt with a Red Star and protesting actions by the federal government that you feel to be unfair by showing up armed and pretending to be ready for battle if it comes to that you are an idiot and if you think the fact that they are actually armed and making statements about the possibility of violence you are indeed an idiot...

  • CZmacure||

    Hah, so the Blac Bloc are ok because we know they're just posing. Classic.

  • GILMORE™||

    Your incoherent run-on sentence said nothing except, "DERP DIFFERENT!!"

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    You still on a New Year's Eve bender or something?

  • Libertarius||

    Yes, since all the smart kids know that uncritical acceptance of tyranny is actually a temperate, mature view of life.

    /SARC No amount of snarky bullshit can hide your cowardice.

  • ||

    lol cowerdice? alright tough guy since you are living under the thumb or tyranny then I would suggest you do what I tell those who pretend to believe the government was responsible for 9/11. Either leave the country or take up arms against the federal government..not doing so makes you the coward..not really because you know in your heart that you are full of shit

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    The price of straw is down to $20 a barrel, apparently. Right Tulpa?

  • Hamster of Doom||

    I'm thinking some random who should've taken that left turn at Albuquerque.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Can't it be both?

  • Fredd||

    you dont show up to do so armed and using terms like "operational security" when refusing to answer questions by the media.

    Only journalism professors are allowed to call in muscle to prevent media questions.

  • Lorenzo Zoil||

    Let's take a look, rape, war, crisis, epidemic, violence, assault, aggression, etc. Is there any reason to believe that the progressives (regressive more accurately) would render the term terrorist utterly meaningless by applying it as a label every single time it can multiply clicks via impressive headlines. Yes, the right does it too, but to no where near the extent that regressives do. Add to that a hipster generation that rarely gets past the headline or hashtag and language as a legitimate form of communication is dead.

  • ||

    no they are not terrorists..they are ASSHOLES. THere is no excuse or justification to show up armed..they are delusional people..and not that many actually..i dont care how the liberal media chooses how to characterize these morons..I dont need their biased opinions to recognize the obvious absurdity of this situation and those few who are involved

  • Lord at War||

    THere is no excuse or justification to show up armed.

    I was "armed" when I went to the donut shop this morning...

    The only "excuse" or "justification" I needed is "I wanted to."

    Fuck off, asshole

  • Hank Phillips||

    This reminds me of Grandpa McCoy being arrested for trying to fix a pothole in the road in front of his driveway. That was a half-century ago on teevee. Today they'd shoot him and get a paid vacation.

  • Rhywun||

    I'm a road doctor, Jim, not a meek slave to the state!

  • Lorenzo Zoil||

    Fuck! I fixed a pothole last week. Am I on the no fly list now?

  • lap83||

    You mean your orphans did?

  • David Case||

    Are they calling themselves a militia or is this just press spin? Here's a link to the 'militia' side of the story -
    http://theconservativetreehous.....rsecution/

  • Agammamon||

    Its press spin. Any group of armed white people is a 'militia'. Its a slur word like 'teabagger', 'rethuglican', etc.

  • Carma||

    Remember, every time a domestic disagreement is labeled "terror," a Patriot Act enforcer gets his wings.

  • Mama La Pinga||

    You don't need to call these people or anyone else a terrorist.

    Whether Islamic, white, black, liberal, libertarian, jewish, gay, etc.

    If you take over a federal building with a bunch of dudes with guns, they are armed criminals that probably committed a federal offense.

    What exactly do you expect the government to do?

    These guys seem to want an old-fashion western shoot-out with police. Except the fact that they would be no match to whatever the government sends in there whether SWAT, Snippers, or even drones.

    Can you imagine these guys expecting to kill and get killed find out that there's no-one to shoot as the gob-mint would simply use drones?

  • GILMORE™||

    Federal building?

    I like how everyone is treating some dudes camping out at a wildlife center out in the middle of nowhere as though these guys are really challenging the "Federal" government by their provocative actions.

    Everyone in the media is pissing themselves and pear clutching about "ITS A FEDERAL SOMETHING!" as though that makes this some especially significant threatening act. Oh no, they've occupied the Beaver-Studies hut. NeoSecessionism alert!!

  • Rhywun||

    The "federal building" is unoccupied, isn't it?

  • GILMORE™||

    How dare you attempt to diminish the significance of this terroristical political act

    "White men with guns" out in the woods saying sorta-anti-government things should rightfully provoke sensible, rational people to demand that the Park Service, National Guard, ATF, DHS, shoot them on sight.

    whereas, inner city mobs, looting and burning? Those are tomorrow's leaders expressing cultural angst. And you are probably racist if you aren't cheering them along.

  • Agammamon||

    Federal buildings are holy ground to the left. Like a church to the conventionally religious, every Federal building is God's house.

  • Galactic Chipper Cdr Lytton||

    Middle of nowhere?? Sheesh.

    Malheur's a pretty big birding destination and gets fairly crowded during the peak season.

    FWS statement:

    Malheur National Wildlife Refuge is closed until further notice.

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is aware that an unknown number of armed individuals have broken into and occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge facility near Burns, Oregon. While the situation is ongoing, the main concern is employee safety, and we can confirm that no federal staff were in the building at the time of the initial incident. We will continue to monitor the situation for additional developments.

    They're aware of something happening... hilarious.

  • GILMORE™||

    "a pretty big birding destination"

    Perhaps I'm biased

    My rule of thumb is, "if you can't see anything to the horizon".... congratulations! you're in the middle of nowhere.

    is the concern that these Secessionist Revolutionaries might take some of the Snow Geese hostage?

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Is the peak season when it's 20 degrees below freezing?

    I actually feel a little but sorry for these guys. It's the high desert. When it gets cold, it gets very fucking cold.

  • Don't Be Naive Arthur||

    "Oh no, they've occupied the Beaver-Studies hut"

    I giggled

  • Agammamon||

    I think the *point* of a situation like that would be to show the Federal government to be the sort of organization that would murder-drone these people for protesting - that the fed's were willing to kill to maintain their power in 1860 and certainly changed that policy.

    I would *expect* that the government not overreact to such a slight provocation, de-escalate the situation, and investigate the very real grievances the Hammmond's have over the BLM and F&W services' actions of the last couple decades. And its not just the Hammonds. There seems to have been a deliberate attempt by BLM and F&W to force out the local ranchers so that their land could be acquired and added to this wildlife refuge. To the point that if a private corporation had done these things it'd be a Hollywood blockbuster staring Julia Roberts.

  • Mama La Pinga||

    I would hope the Feds and the Police don't overreact. But overreact is what they do. Look at the Waco from Waco that set the place on fire. Look at Ruby Ridge. If this goes on long enough, it will be another one of those.

    These guys are lucky they are white.
    Had they been black, the Feds would had raided the place hours ago.

  • GILMORE™||

    ""Had they been black""

    I'm sure you know so much about that.

  • Governor Squid||

    "...the very real grievances the Hammonds have over the BLM and F&W services' actions of the last couple decades. "

    I know that BLM is BlackLivesMatter, but what's F&W? Foodstamps & Welfare? Is that what we're calling Obama now?

  • GILMORE™||

    Fishery & Wildlife.

    Google is your friend.

  • David Welker||

    As a liberal (not a libertarian), I agree that the word terrorist is overused in our society.

    That said, I do not believe that invading the property of another (here a federal government building) all the while threatening to use deadly force to defend that usurpation is something that ought to be taken lightly. These actions, while not terrorism, are criminal.

    It should be noted that there does seem to be something of a double standard at play with regard to rhetoric. Some people were quick to call protestors trying to hold police accountable "thugs," even though most of them were non-violent and doing nothing more than legitimately exercising their First Amendment rights to assemble and petition the government. And in this case, we have clearly criminal actions by these militia-type group, and people are using the phrase "armed protestor" to describe them. But these are people who are threatening to use violence in order to maintain a criminal usurpation of territory and theft of property. Most worrisome, they are putting their own lives and the lives of public employees in danger. Are we to make an exception to enforcing the law for this group?

  • GILMORE™||

    ""(here a federal government building)""

    See?

  • David Welker||

    The point is not that it is a federal building, the point is that it is a building that is not the property of those who are using armed force to occupy it.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Actually...it is.

  • David Welker||

    Actually, it is not. Armed groups are not authorized to perpetually occupy federal property to the exclusion of others. That goes beyond any right they have as a member of the public. Furthermore, not all federal property is open to the public, and for good reason.

  • GILMORE™||

    So you really do think that some jerkoffs preventing people access to a "Prime Birding Site" during the off-season is something worthy of your current Pampers-Soiling?

    The desperate repetition of words like, "Federal" and "authority" and "exclusion" is cute and all.

    Until sane people realize you're talking about a fucking shack in the middle of a wetlands during the off-season.

    Ft Sumter it aint, sweetie.

  • David Welker||

    If you do not own a particular piece of property, you do not have a right to judge whether it is being put to its best use and, based on that judgment, seize it for yourself. At least not under the law as it presently exists.

    In any case, the bigger danger in this case is much more the danger it creates for human life.

  • GILMORE™||

    "the danger it creates for human life"

    Ah.

    So you'd think the smart thing to do would be....

    ...fucking nothing? Hopefully the geese will survive without their federal protectors for a month or so.

  • ||

    If you do not own a particular piece of property, you do not have a right to judge whether it is being put to its best use and, based on that judgment, seize it for yourself.

    Hasn't stopped the federal government. They've had no restraint with regards to stealing land from the citizens.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    That's not what you said.

    You said:

    is not the property of those who are using armed force to occupy it.

    The government doesn't own fuck-all. That building belongs to the people of the US. We allow the government to manage it. It may or may not be open to the public, but sure as shit, the public owns it.

  • David Welker||

    Yes, the protestors "own" the property as a member of "We the People," but they do not personally own the property such that they can exclude all others as they could with their own personal property.

    That is what I meant when I said they do not own the property.

  • Win Bear||

    Who are they excluding?

  • retiredfire||

    All the diaper-soilers, even if not within a thousand miles of the place.
    Methinks David is one of those.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    I have to agree with Win Bear. Do you have any evidence they're excluding other people?

  • Don't Be Naive Arthur||

    To-do: Monday Jan, 4
    1) Store (milk, bread)
    2) Cleaners
    3) Pharmacy (p/u prescription)
    4) Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters

    Fuck, that's right - can't get in there today. Fucking protesters..

    *scratches off #4*

  • Win Bear||

    Actually, it is not. Armed groups are not authorized to perpetually occupy federal property to the exclusion of others.

    As far as I can tell, they aren't actually "excluding" anybody. If you like winters out in the desert, feel free to drive up there to join them.

    Furthermore, not all federal property is open to the public, and for good reason.

    And what is the "good reason" in this case supposed to be? Is this a landing site for alien visitors? Or what?

  • retiredfire||

    To be consistent, then, you must demand all "students" who occupy a campus office, or all the OWSers that occupied parks, streets, and other public property - because it is not their property - be arrested and charged.
    As for them being "armed", despite the Constitutionally guaranteed right to be so, these are people who regularly carry firearms because, for them, the nearest law enforcement is hours, not just minutes, away.

  • Marty Comanche||

    The point of the protest is that the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge is part of a century long con to push ranchers off their land. I haven't been able to verify any of the information here, but it's very much in keeping with TR's belief that the government rather than private citizens should own natural resources. So, if the government has been slowly stealing land from ranchers using dirty tricks like flooding their land, occupying the headquarters of the phony baloney wildlife refuge set up to slowly despoil the ranchers makes symbolic sense.

  • GILMORE™||

    :Some people were quick to call protestors trying to hold police accountable "thugs,""

    Do you have any specific grievance, or is this the "There Are Those Who Say" type of bullshit?

    because if your citation is in reference to Ferguson or Baltimore.... I think "thugs" is far from the worst thing a rational person might say.

    "these are people who are threatening to use violence in order to maintain a criminal usurpation of territory"

    Really? because everything we've heard about these people has been translated through the Telephone-game of retards like you... who seem to want to slap a politicized interpretation on events with a desperation more obvious and transparent than the first-reactions to the San Berdoo shootings...

  • David Welker||

    The vast majority of protestors in Ferguson and Baltimore were completely within their First Amendment rights and did nothing more than engage in peace unarmed protest. If you choose to do so, you, of course, have a First Amendment right to call peaceful protestors thugs. But it is my First Amendment right to note the double standard.

    As far your insistence on using the word "retard" to describe someone who may not agree with you on everything, I think it is immature and reveals your complete lack of confidence in your ability to persuade through reasoned discourse. If you are going to act like that, are you sure you are qualified to be commenting on a website called "reason"?

  • GILMORE™||

    Right. You're being very rational and no one is allowed to say bad things about rioters, because there were some people "Not Rioting" near them at the same time.

    You're not very good at this. Though the preening about your first amendment rights was cute.

  • David Welker||

    You can say bad things about rioters, but it would also be good to remember that they did not represent the majority of protestors. Also, rioters have no logical connection to the correctness of the legitimate protestors cause.

  • GILMORE™||

    The only person engaged in double standards here is YOU.

    You're trying to insist that = DESPITE ACTUAL VIOLENCE = Baltimore protesters were *actually* collectively innocent...

    (ignoring things like widespread destruction of property and physical abuse)

    ...all while asserting that these Bird-Watching-Center-Squatters are somehow collectively guilty of some heinous crime... because....

    well, you've never really made a case other than to throw big-important-sounding words like Federal and Usurp and Authorized and blah blah blah blah. Because they're armed? So what? are you concerned for the safety of the winter Geese?

    You're a troll, and not even a good one at that. If you're sincere, you're embarrassingly dense.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    But it is my First Amendment right to note the double standard.

    Well, those protesters in Baltimore sure showed a single standard when they burned down the senior center. When these yokels burn down the feds rural shack, let us know.

  • David Welker||

    First of all, the vast majority of protestors did not engage in any criminal act.

    You might make an argument that this armed occupation is not as bad as burning down a senior center. Whether that is true or not, either way, we are talking about criminal acts here that ordinary law-abiding citizens should never consider. Furthermore, it is possible that the criminal occupation of the government building in this case may, at the end of day, cause as much or more risk to human life than the senior center. I do not recall hearing about any deaths at a senior center in Baltimore due to protests. Perhaps because the senior center was still under construction and thus unoccupied.

    In any case, there is little use of arguing about which criminal act is worse. A law abiding citizen engaged in legitimate protests would not engage in either.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    First of all, the vast majority of protestors did not engage in any criminal act

    The vast majority of gun owners never kill anyone, yet I keep having to hear about how there's an "epidemic" of gun violence that's leading a lot of people in your tribe to call for outright bans and confiscation towards a Constitutional right.

    Whether that is true or not, either way, we are talking about criminal acts here that ordinary law-abiding citizens should never consider.

    Well, we have a situation here where the federal government won't honor the plea deals it made. How is that not a criminal act?

    I do not recall hearing about any deaths at a senior center in Baltimore due to protests. Perhaps because the senior center was still under construction and thus unoccupied.

    There haven't been any deaths here, either, so what's your point?

  • Seamus||

    There haven't been any deaths here, either, so what's your point?

    Or any buildings burned down.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Furthermore, it is possible that the criminal occupation of the government building in this case may, at the end of day, cause as much or more risk to human life than the senior center.

    I'm not sure if that statement is batshit crazy or just disingenuous. The only "risk to human life" here is from the Feds moving in and attacking these people. What you're arguing is roughly equivalent to telling an abused wife she shouldn't stand up to her husband because "think of what you'll make him do".

  • Lord at War||

    The vast majority of protestors in Ferguson and Baltimore were completely within their First Amendment rights and did nothing more than engage in peace unarmed protest.

    I saw 100's of people seizing Federally owned highways... perhaps the Gov't should have brought out some bulldozers.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    If you choose to do so, you, of course, have a First Amendment right to call peaceful protestors thugs. But it is my First Amendment right to note the double standard.

    Are you going to tell me you see no difference whatsoever between smashing in someone's store window and taking the inventory, oh and setting fire to the place, and sitting in a federally owned shack in the middle of nowhere? Seriously? Because, you'll bear in mind that it was, in fact, the rioters that people were calling thugs.

  • Libertarius||

    I got into it with facebook leftoids over this same point. Every time a gaggle of left-wing deadbeats forcibly occupy someone else's property in order to stage a (highly publicized and glorified) public temper tantrum, that is held up as some foggy, half-baked notion of justice (no matter how much property they destroy and people they assault and rape).

    These guys in Oregon are not looking for handouts, they are standing up to a belligerent, out of control government. And most importantly for the left-wing religion of the state, they are committing the sin that must be punished by death: they are defying the claimed authority of Big Brother, who all right thinkers know is an insuperable master whose motives and actions cannot be questioned or defied.

  • Agammamon||

    What about the criminal usurpation that the BLM perpetrated? Or is deliberately diverting water flow away from its normal course to dry out the meadows and flood the ranches and homesteads near the lakes until they become so worthless the owners are begging BLM to buy them off them?

  • David Welker||

    The actions of the BLM may or may not be good policy (I have no opinion on that), but there is no indication they are illegal.

    But if those actions are actually illegal, there is a solution for those negatively affected. And that is to bring a lawsuit in federal court.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    A lawsuit against the feds...

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Good one. You're a funny guy Dave.

    Have you read this?

    If half of this is true, you should be outraged, and calling for investigations, not that they'd do any good.

    This is an act of civil disobedience. At some point, it's justified.

  • David Welker||

    Francisco:

    Thanks for providing that link. It gives the story from the Hammond's perspective very well. If it is true that the fire was only started as a backfire to stop the spread of another more serious fire, then, of course, it would be wrong for them to be prosecuted at all. To be fair to the federal government though, I do not know both sides of the story.

    Regardless of whether starting the first was wise, necessary, and lawful, I hope we can agree that the word "terrorism" is defined in our laws in an over broad. manner In fact, I would argue that the word "terrorism" has no place in our criminal law, as it is ultimately subjective which criminal acts ought to be regarded as terrorism and which as simply criminal. And this case shows, when we try to put the word terrorism in our criminal laws, it nearly inevitably ends up being used inappropriately.

    Perhaps we can also agree that, while they are well-meaning, mandatory minimums are massively overused. Although such minimums are perhaps justifiable for some crimes, probably only the most serious crimes ought to have mandatory minimums.

    All of that said, armed occupation of buildings (owned by whomever) is not likely to be an effective solution. Even if we felt the cause of these protestors was just, the cause of other protestors would not be. While being consistent with equality under the law, we cannot tolerate these tactics by these protestors unless we are prepared to tolerate them by all protestors.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    All of that said, armed occupation of buildings (owned by whomever) is not likely to be an effective solution. Even if we felt the cause of these protestors was just, the cause of other protestors would not be. While being consistent with equality under the law, we cannot tolerate these tactics by these protestors unless we are prepared to tolerate them by all protestors.

    When the government is the criminal, where does one turn for justice?

    As I said, I see this as an act of civil disobedience against a corrupt government, and at some point such actions are justified. I'm not sure if we are there yet, but we are getting damn close.

    I suggest, instead of blathering on about how horrible it is for the citizens to stand against a corrupt government, you spend your energy demanding your government act within the framework of the powers we've allotted them.

  • ||

    It's like Dr Jonson said, how that when we find ourselfs living a state of nature we got to erect justice under our own power. Blows my mind how the Hammonds are submitting so easily. If there's some incentive to do so, I can't see it. There's no advantage gained by submitted, and nothing really to lose by resisting.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    They have wives and kids who still live, yes? And they'd probably like that to continue.

  • ||

    Regarding the Bundies and the 111percenters, it's hard to tell which group is more cluless. The former thinks that an erratic internet conexion is sign of the feds fucking with them, because that's, apparently, the best they could do. The latter thinks that asking the authorities who are fucking everyone for help will work just so long as we use the right esoteric incantations and hop one legged round the rumproast widdershins four times during the previous full moon. Course, one of Bundy's group was getting into that as well, complaining I had waived my right to dispute jurisdiction by referring to myself as a "citizen". I pointed out it didn't fucking matter what magical words you say or tantrums you wave around the fire, because the only jurisdiction the state employs is the jurisdiction of the gun (a paraphrasis of something my mother said--much better--at her trial, though muh favorite quotation was when she turned the jury at one point and said, "Why should you have to obey a bunch of thugs?" We got the whole thing on video, but unfortunately everyone I knew who had a copy dropped dead in the last couple years.). Everyone is very disappointing.

    =-

  • PaulW||

    Careful FA, when people start questioning their religion, it gets ugly before it gets better.

    I'm guessing he probably skedaddled back over to Salon, though.

  • Win Bear||

    What about the criminal usurpation that the BLM perpetrated?

    What "criminal usurpation"? Right now, the Hammonds have a small farm surrounded by federally owned land. There really is no right answer to whether the Hammonds do or do not have a right to use the BLM land that surrounds them, or under what conditions, or what the penalty should be for their out of control fires. As with the Bundy family, you can either view these people as former recipients of large government handouts that have come to an end and that they want to perpetuate illegally, or as people with historical rights that have been taken away arbitrarily by the government. And both views are right in some sense.

    It's impossible to decide or price these things without a free market.

  • Agammamon||

    While #OregonUnderAttack was trending for most of the day on Sunday, another tag soon followed as a way to combat the reluctance to call a bunch of white men waving around guns at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge terrorists: #YallQaeda. The tag is dumb, yes, but so are these people.

    You know who else were terrorists? George Washington and company. #GodSaveTheQueen

  • ||

    You know who else were terrorists?

    Brer Torquemada and Brer Savonarola and Archbishop Langdon and Simon de Montfort. #DrepdemalleGudkjennersine

  • Kevin Sorbos Manful Locks||

    #BureaofLandManagementLocationsMatter

  • ||

    They don't talk about how they had to defile an Indian burial grounds in order to build the fucking Refuge.

  • Zok||

    Of note:

    The district court judge sentencing the Hammonds, Anne Aiken, was married to James Klonoski, UA law prof – and former chair of the Democratic Party of Oregon.

    He took immense pride in his trade name, "liberal curmudgeon."

    http://www.oregonlive.com/news.....o_pro.html

  • Win Bear||

    How the hell do you know that "these people fought for the same terrorism laws that were later used against them"???

    The ironies here are merely due to your fabrications and bigotry.

  • Libertarius||

    There is a word for your condition: neurosis. It's a symptom of being a leftoid.

  • Frankjasper1||

    What does this have to do with anti-gov and white supremacy? What evidence do you have to support these assertions?

  • DesigNate||

    I'm sorry, how is serving your sentence and then being ass fucked into serving 5 years of prison "of your own doing"?

  • Frankjasper1||

    Can you provide some evidence that they fought for these terrorism laws? What specifically makes them terrorists here?

  • ||

    'At the time, some critics branded the track as ghoulish and the most-unsettling father-daughter number since Serge and Charlotte Gainsbourg's "Lemon Incest,"'

    I think he's going a bit overboard here. I always thought "Lemon Incest" was kind of cute. I can maybe see some folks as thinking it a bit unsettling, if they were jerks and easily unsettled, but "ghoulish"? And even if it bears any quantum of unsettlingness, there was surely something much more unsettling done by a father and daughter at some point, i would imagine, though I can't really think of any particularly unsettling routines.

  • ||

    No idea how this comment got attached to this article. Leave it to Fuckup MicStiùpaid to leave comments somewhere.

  • Lord at War||

    how about try voting for people who won't panic with demands for 'new legislation' every time a crazy person or jihadi murders someone.

    I didn't vote for Barack Obama...

  • Win Bear||

    Well, I don't really have a resolution for either the Bundy or the Hammond issue, but if I can give some sound advice here: Ammon, keep the beard.

  • Ron||

    What i'd like to know and maybe Judge Napalatonio could weigh in on this is how could they be re-sentenced after serving time. Isn't that a form of double jeopardy that is illegal or can the government now come after anyone they want after serving their time, can the government now come in and put me in jail even though I paid my parking tickit 40 years ago. this is Fascism(?) and should be protested. Unfortunately for the Hammond's the Bundy's have overreacted and made the situation worse they should have stuck to one thing.

  • Root Boy||

    It's fucked up, but I heard gov appealed the sentence (since it wasn't in line with the BS terrorist act sentencing guidelines) and 9th Circuit (yeah those high and mighty liberals) said they have to serve the 5 year min -- hope they don't have to do an additional 5 years as that would be double jeopardy.

    I heard they also had to pay something like $400K for the one burned acre of gov land.

  • Rt. Hon. Judge Woodrow Chipper||

    everyone who opposes government-sanctioned violence

    Well that leaves out Democrats, Republicans, and any other proggie flavor.

  • WillMG||

    And this same hyperventilating from progs who won't say "terror" whenever someone screaming Allahu Akbar shoots people or sets of a bomb and who claim burning down a senior center and looting stores isn't rioting.

  • skunkman||

    Simple here. Calling idiots like this terrorists as a calculated move by the Amercia haters to legitimize what ISIS and other extreme muslim groups are up to. One group are citizens that are probably misguided but in any case are acting out, inappropriately, against their government. The other group is at war with America and the culture of the west.

    If you don't believe that there is a segment of the left that feels aligned with muslim terrorism then you haven't been paying attention. However, the appropriate response is not to support these right wing clowns.

  • Tionico||

    nyone referring to these patriots as terrorists and crazies has not read their Constitution.... this is a clear case of Double Jeopardy, they had no representation at that phoney resentencing "hearing", and their chargers are trumped up in the first place, as "arson" by legal definition involves the burning of a STRUCTURE, and none were burned, thus they could NOT have committed arson.

    Further, FedGov have no place doing law enforcement, thus never should have tried him in Federal court. If they DID commit a crime, they needed to face the accusation in a local district or county court. Their "crime" is no worse for having been "committed" on "federal land", which FedGov have no place to own or control. By REAL law, that land is Oregon's land.

    So,WHO are the armed "terrorists" or thugs? Seems its the feds...... all the Hammonds wanted to do was to continue to run their cattle grazing operation. They have managred that property for generations, and done just fine. "Crime" also necessitates intent... and their controlled burn had no evil intent. Burning off invasive species to release good native grass for grazing is simply good land managrement practise.

    But thjs is far from the first instance of tyranny and abuse coming out of this part of Oregon. Malheur County seem to be a hotbed of such tyranny.

  • Hi there!||

    I don't think the courts define "intent" like you think they do...."intent", as I believe the lawyers will describe it applying here, means the defendant meant to light the fire that got out of control...that's all.

  • DarrenM||

    Lowering the bar for what counts as terrorism is not a winning move for critics of authoritarianism and unconstitutional exercises of police power.


    Well there's your explanation. The people freaking out and calling everyone "terrorist" (or fascist or whatever the epithet of the week is) are *not* critical of authoritarianism (as long as the authoritarianism promotes their agenda) and the are not concerned with unconstitutional exercises of police power (as long as those exercises are aimed in the "right" direction.)

  • Fisting Ethics||

    I find an armed protest in an empty federal building encouraging, not frightening. Being armed and willing to defend themselves against violence: this should be a persons default state of existence, need not change simply because they are protesting, and nobody need apologize for the exercise of multiple rights simultaneously. Civil disobedience against government abuses is a basic right that's exercise does not terminate an individual's right to self defense. Exercising an individual right does not supress some other right.

  • RockLibertyWarrior||

    I have mentioned how much I hate the fucktard left? Seriously, I hate those hypocritical motherfuckers with a blood seething rage, they label anybody who disagrees with them a "terrorist", "racist", "homophobe" etc.

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