Monday, March 23, 2009

Pro-Life? You May be a Dangerous Domestic Terrorist! MIAC Says So

There's an old saying: "give a man enough rope, and he'll hang himself."

Or, in this case, someone else.

9/11, Focus Groups, Fear, and the MIAC

Apparently1, the Missouri Information Analysis Center, or MIAC, is a government collective set up by the Missouri state government. It's supposed to identify warning signs, so law enforcement can spot potential domestic terrorists.

So far, so good. I think it's prudent to keep an eye on the equivalent of a wild-eyed loony with an assault rifle, before he starts down shoppers at the mall. But, to continue the analogy, I think it's crazy to stake out the sporting goods store that sells BB guns.

Which may be what's being recommended in Missouri.

According to the MIAC (draft, I hope) report, you're a suspected domestic terrorist if you:
  • Supported third-party candidates like
    • Ron Paul (Republican, Constitution Party)
    • Chuck Baldwin (Constitution Party)
    • Bob Barr (Libertarian)
  • Are an "anti-abortion activist"
  • Believe the United States, Mexico and Canada will someday form a North American Union
    • This is described as a "conspiracy theory" - It's a new one to me
  • Possess the
    • Gadsden "Don't Tread on Me" flag
    • Widely available anti-income tax film "America: Freedom to Fascism"
Okay: there's being prudent, and there's being full-bore, pedal-to-the-metal, paranoid. The MIAC report, as described, is pretty close to paranoid.

I didn't support, or vote for, Ron Paul: but I can't seriously believe that my neighbors who did are domestic terrorists. Not even potential domestic terrorists, any more than any person with an opinion might, conceivably, go crazy and start building pipe bombs.

The same goes for people who own the Gadsden flag.

"Anti-abortion activists" might, legitimately, be called domestic terrorists. If that term is used to describe people who want to blow up abortion clinics (excuse me: is the euphemism still 'women's health centers?') or kill abortionists.

But, if an "anti-abortion activist" is someone who seriously thinks that killing a baby is naughty, that mothers shouldn't have their kids killed - and says so in public - that puts me on MIAC's suspect list.

There are 58 of these Fusion Centers, set up by the Department of Homeland Security. I can only hope that the other 57 have a tighter grip on reality than this bunch seems to.

Dangerous Revolutionaries Holding Washington D.C.!

Take a good look at the flags that the MAIC identifies as having links to domestic terror:

(from Southeast Missourian, used w/o permission)
Hello! Earth Calling MIAC! The Colonists Won!
I don't doubt that there are real domestic terrorists who use: the Gadsden flag; variations of the current American flag; the colors red, white, blue, yellow, or green. But that doesn't mean that everyone who uses these things is dangerous.

Strike that. Potentially dangerous, but in a very selective and sanctioned way. Like the first Commander in Chief of the New Continental Fleet. That's the flag his ships used, in the upper left corner of a page from the MIAC's report.

I realize that the propriety of signing off on the Declaration of Independence can be debated: but by now it's a done deal.

And, like it or not, the "Gadsden flag" is part of American history: and not everyone who, on the whole, is satisfied with the results of that colonial revolt, is a danger to friends and neighbors.

A Government Body Says I'm a Suspected Anti-Establishment Radical? Cool!

I'm "anti-abortion" - that's newspeak for 'pro-life.'2 I have to be: I've read Humanae Vitae, researched what the Catechism has to say about killing innocent babies (the gist of it is "don't"), and paid attention to what the Vatican says.

And, I've made no secret of it.

Which, quite possibly, makes me a suspected subversive extremist radical domestic terrorist, in MIAC's eyes.

Cool!

I grew up in the sixties, and absorbed some of the 'question authority' ethic of that epoch.

Sound odd, coming from a Catholic? And a convert, at that? Not really. I question authority: but that doesn't mean I necessarily defy or avoid it. In the case of God and his Church, I realized that there was absolutely no way I could beat God, so I joined his outfit. Call me shallow: but I like power. Besides, I can't come up with a better ethical system than the Word of God, as preserved and transmitted by his Church.

My views and way of life being what it is, I get pegged as "conservative" quite a bit. Which is, as far as it goes, somewhat accurate. Much of what I believe and do is "conservative," by today's standards.

I don't mind: labels are useful, and calling me "conservative" is a convenient way for people to think about me. And, back in the sixties, I looked like a pencil-necked geek: right down to the pencil protector and huge larynx.

I missed out on the whole freak-your-parents-out, long hair and love beads hippy thing.

So, on the far side of middle age, I get a kick out of being 'one of those people.'

As long as nobody apart from a few policy wonks and over-age-in-grade Vietnam War protesters take the MIAC's recommendations seriously.

Today, MIAC's Report is a Mildly Off-Color Joke

If law enforcement or anybody else with real power takes these madcap opinions seriously - and implements them - we could all be in for a world of trouble.

It isn't that long ago that the Maryland State Police put some nuns on their watch list. And then took them off.

I do not agree with the politics of those nuns, but they were not, in my opinion, a threat to American security.

Granted, it's unsettling to know that three nuns could break into a secure American military facility, paint slogans on the walls - in blood - and leave before anybody noticed. But embarrassing whoever was supposed to be in charge of security is not "terrorism."

And I really don't think that writing graffiti is 'terroristic,' even if I don't agree with the sentiments expressed.

I'm hoping, quite sincerely, and praying, that crazy ideas like that (draft?) MIAC report don't take root. If they do, I'm very concerned that it may be 'happy new year, 1984.'

More-or-less related posts:News and views: Background:
1 "On March 12, 2009 the following article authored by internet reporter Kurt Nimmo was published on Alex Jones' www.infowars.com website as well as the Truth News internet news site, ( http://www.truthnews.us/?p=2720 ):...

"'Alex Jones has received a secret report distributed by the Missouri Information Analysis Center (MIAC) entitled "The Modern Militia Movement: and dated February 20, 2009. A footer on the document indicates it is "unclassified" but "law enforcement sensitive," in other words not for public consumption. A copy of the report was sent to Jones by an anonymous Missouri police officer.'..." (Southeast Missourian)

2 "Newspeak" is one of many words which George Orwell introduced in 1984. Since newspeak contains terms which describe a disturbing number of accepted ideas in contemporary America, I've started a sort of glossary of newspeak terms: "Feeling Ungood About Doublethink? Here's Help" (March 23, 2009).

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

This MIAC thing has me fuming, too.

Drives me crazy when they profile against decent Americans.

I'm a Christian American, personally; I believe any and everything that the Bible says, and I have a few issues with some of the Catholic doctrines.

For instance, how is it that Catholics are compelled to call their priests and bishops "father", when Jesus clearly stated:

"And call no [man] your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven." ~23:9

Or, how can Catholics repeat the rosary over and over when it is plainly written:

"But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen [do]: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking." ~Matthew 6:7

I am not bringing up these things to show that "I'm right, and you're wrong"; I simply have a true concern for you, personally.

Could you please explain your position on these things?

~A Concerned One

Brian, aka Nanoc, aka Norski said...

Anonymous,

You've given me a laundry list of topics to discuss.

When I'm done, you'll tell me that the Bible - and your preacher - say I'm wrong.

Been there, done that.

As for me, go ahead and be concerned. I've read the King James translation of the Bible and think it's one of the finest pieces of literature in the English language.

But, I'm aware that Jesus didn't speak in the English language of King James' time, and that the translation is the best that was possible - at the time.

When I pray, odds are I don't do it the way you do in your church.

You might check out the Psalms: Some of those are a tad more repetitious that contemporary writing styles.

Catholic prayer - the 'repetitious' ones like the Rosary - are intended as aids to meditation on Jesus and God.

And, yes: the Catholic Church does not teach that all meditation is evil.

So, Anonymous: I appreciate your concern.

I also appreciate the topic list you gave: and will most likely be posting on them, eventually.

I hope you and the other Anonymouses keep checking this blog. You might learn something about those Catholics that you didn't know before.

Anonymous said...

Well, I certainly appreciate your civility.

I have no denomination, so I don't need to "pray in church"; I simply pray to God from wherever I am, and I read my Bible.

When you give your responses, please use the Bible as much as you can; I think, and I'm sure you'll agree, that the Bible is the source from which all doctrine must be derived.

So, in all fairness to you and your opinion, I would respectfully and humbly advise you to defend your religion's doctrines (the rosary, the Papacy, etc,.) with Scripture.

(As opposed to going into detail about how erroneous the English translation is.)

"All scripture [is] given by inspiration of God, and [is] profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:" ~II Timothy 3:1

BTW, I'm not sure what your point was about the songs from Psalms being "a tad more repetitious that contemporary writing styles"; could you please explain that in your post?

In Christ,
~A Concerned One

Brian, aka Nanoc, aka Norski said...

A Concerned One,

Thanks for the feedback. And the good words.

About chapter-and-verse references from the Bible: pretty good idea. There are a lot more than a reader would think: Biblical references in the paragraphs I link to in The Catechism of the Catholic Church.

I take what you've written seriously: and intend to address points you've raised.

Don't however, expect me to abandon the Body of Christ. And, it's not my opinion. All those links with numbers as the text? And the Biblical references? Those are just that: references.

When I express an opinion, I try to make it clear that it is my opinion. Otherwise, I'm just passing on what I've read, been told, and believe.

Anonymous said...

I only know what we have experienced as a family and that my son has been a target of domestic terrorism we believe backed by th Catholic church. No one is perfect and their is a history of abortion in our immediate family. i am here to tell whoever is out there to leave our family alone. We love our family and we love the unborn too. hER CHOICE WE DID NOT KNOW ABOUT BUT WE STILL LOVE HER.

Brian Gill said...

Anonymous,

I'm sorry to hear that your son has been "a target of domestic terrorism." I'm also glad that you still love her.

As for the Catholic Church backing terrorism: Someone who says he or she is Catholic may have decided to break the rules and hate someone to the point of terrorizing that person.

I don't expect to change your mind - but will offer as a comparison my opinion that there is no mainstream Protestant denomination that's behind the occasional cross-burnings in America.

More: "Hating People: Not a Good Idea" (January 22, 2010).

Brian Gill said...

Everybody,

After responding to Anonymous's comment, I realized that although I might have at least implied that Catholics aren't allowed to hate people - I hadn't made the very important point that we're strictly commanded to love people. All people. No matter what.

Considering a common view, in America, that the Catholic Church is a rigid, cold, 'unloving' organization - that may sound odd. Partly, I think, because we tend to confuse "love" and "approval." I've posted about this before:

"No Open Season on Transgendered People, Please!"
(April 26, 2011)

"Loving Neighbors: No Matter What"
(May 10, 2011)

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From time to time, a service that I use will display links to - odd - services and retailers.

I block a few of the more obvious dubious advertisers.

For example: psychic anything, numerology, mediums, and related practices are on the no-no list for Catholics. It has to do with the Church's stand on divination. I try to block those ads.

Sometime regrettable advertisements get through, anyway.

Bottom line? What that service displays reflects the local culture's norms, - not Catholic teaching.