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Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Another state kidnaping case

Counter A lot of my readers are not homeschoolers and therefore probably aren't aware of a child named Domenic who was torn from his parents' arms two years ago and held in state custody ever since. Their crime? Attempting to take him out of the country.
HSLDA has the story:

Family of State-napped Swedish Child Savors Small Victory

Christer and Annie Johansson have won a small but hopeful victory in their quest to regain custody of their nine-year-old son Domenic who was taken from them over 2 years ago in a dramatic raid while the family was seated on an airliner departing the Nordic country. Ruby Harrold-Claesson, the couple’s attorney, reported to HSLDA that the Gotland District Court ruled in favor of the Johanssons, allowing them to retain their parental rights of Domenic. “Gotland district court has ruled against the social workers and the social council and the Municipality of Gotland in their quest to terminate Annie’s and Christer’s parental rights for Domenic … I hope that this court decision is the beginning of the end of the gross violations of Human rights that Annie, Christer and Domenic have been subjected to at the hands of the social workers and the social council in Gotland,” said Christer Johansson’s attorney and President of the Nordic Human Rights Council Ruby Harrold-Claesson. Michael Donnelly, director of international relations at HSLDA, says this decision offers a glimmer of hope.

“I am hopeful that this is the beginning of the end to the horrific treatment these people have suffered at the hands of Swedish authorities over the past two and a half years,” states Donnelly. “The Johansson family has endured unspeakable tyranny over their decision to homeschool their child and then to attempt to leave Sweden. Sweden’s behavior in this case has been shocking.” The Swedish Social Services Committee first sought to terminate the parental rights of Annie and Christer Johansson in October 2011. The latest decision by the Gotland court against social services marks a significant departure from previous decisions in the Johansson’s case. Swedish courts had also previously removed Harrold-Claesson from the Johansson case. “The social services are afraid of me because I stand up to them,” said Harrold-Claesson. “There are few lawyers in Sweden who dare to. But in Jamaica where I grew up this kind of treatment of families is unheard of. Too many magistrates simply do the bidding of the all-powerful Swedish social services, and this case is no different from the scores I have litigated over the years.”

Magistrate Magnus Schultzberg dismissed Harrold-Claesson from the case in June after Gotland local authorities requested she be removed. The magistrate then appointed a public defender, Torsten B├Ąckstrand. However, under European human rights laws, defendants have a right to choose counsel. “I applaud Torsten B├Ąckstrand’s decision to resign after he was told by Christer that he wanted me to represent him,” said Harrold-Claesson. “The latest magistrate has recognized the family’s right to have me, and I applaud her decision to keep this family together, at least on paper, for now. We will continue this fight for justice until Domenic goes home.” The tragedy concerning the Johansson family began in June 2009, when then seven-year old Domenic was forcibly removed from his parents, Christer and Annie, while the family was on board an airplane bound for Annie’s homeland of India. Swedish police snatched Domenic without a warrant, placed him in state custody, and have not charged the Johanssons with a crime. Authorities have subsequently pointed to some minor dental problems and a spotty vaccination history as justification for continuing to hold Dominic in state custody.

HSLDA continues to work with the Alliance Defense Fund and Harrold-Claesson at the European Court of Human Rights representing the family in their lawsuit against Sweden. The case has not been provided any kind of schedule. The ECHR has the authority to order Sweden to pay monetary damages, as has happened in the past in similar cases, but could not enforce an order to have the child returned to his parents. The local court’s decision indicates a possible shift in the way the case is being handled and offers a breath of hope. One of the major reasons for the state-napping and continued seizure of the child was because the family homeschooled him. “Sweden’s government continues to go down a frightening path of educational tyranny as it implements harsh policies causing more and more homeschooling Swedes to flee the country. In the past several months, three families have relocated from Sweden to neighboring countries under pressure because educational officials have reported them to social authorities. The social authorities have virtually unlimited power to take children from families and cause great pain and suffering if they choose to,” Donnelly said. HSLDA has petitioned Swedish officials to reunite the Johansson family, condemning the continued separation of Domenic from his parents. As of October 2010, the Johansson’s case had been heard at the every level of the Swedish court system and the actions of social services upheld.

If you would like to send the family a note of encouragement, you may contact them at: Christer and Annie Johansson, c/o Rune Johansson, Alva Gudings 363, 623 46 Hemse, Sweden.

UPDATE JUNE 2012:
According to this CBN news report:
I received word this evening that the parents of Domenic Johansson, the Swedish homeschooled boy abducted by authorities in 2008, have won the case in which Swedish Social Services tried to have their parental rights terminated.
The five-judge panel decided 4-1 in favor of Christer and Annie Johansson, with judges reportedly questioning the grounds for taking Domenic away in the first place.
Social Services could appeal, but I'm told they usually do not when they have been beaten this badly.
The opinion was reportedly so favorable to the Johanssons that there is hope that Domenic will be returned home soon.

APRIL 2013
Domenic is still incarcerated.

JUNE 2016
Domenic has now spent most of his life in the custody of kidnapers. 

Friday, 16 December 2011

Revolt of the lesser magistrate: It's happening in Indiana

Counter Brad Rogers, a "stealth candidate" in the 2010 election, won a stunning upset primary victory for the open seat of county sheriff over his boss, the assistant sheriff. His first priority was "changing hearts and minds for inmates and transitioning them back to the community successfully, thereby reducing recidivism" at the Elkhart County Jail where he had been Commander. Time will tell if and when that goal is reached, but in the meantime, Brad Rogers has made a name for himself in patriotic circles as one of the first local government officials in his state to send federal agents packing.
Roger’s Sheriff’s Department told the FDA to back off:

He wrote two letters to the Justice Department warning it not to conduct inspections of Hochstetler’s [Amish dairy] farm without a warrant from a local judge. In the process, he got into a debate over the limits of federal power and the U.S. Constitution with the Justice Department’s Goldstein.

Earlier this month, Rogers emailed Goldstein that there had been “a number of inspections and attempted inspections on (Hochstetler’s) farm…” He warned that “any further attempts to inspect this farm without a warrant signed by a local judge, based on probable cause, will result in Federal inspectors’ removal or arrest for trespassing by my officers or I.”

Imagine that. A federal agent doing business as usual, arrested for trespassing by the local sheriff! It may not play on the state or national level, but in Elkhart County, Indiana, there is now someone who actually takes the Constitution seriously, and has the legal means to back it up.

And Brad Rogers appears to understand the Constitution better than any federal officer taking a vow to "uphold and defend it against all enemies, foreign and domestic."

The Goldstein letter prompted Rogers to reply, in a letter just being sent today, “When you assert that federal law trumps state law, it is a distortion of the intent, content and extent of the supreme law of the land–the U.S. Constitution-seen through a myopic and misunderstood view of Article VI, section 2 (The Supremacy Clause).”
He also asserted that “the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act could be deemed unconstitutional if and when challenged vis-a-vis the Tenth Amendment juxtaposed with The Commerce Clause.” 
He added that “our form of government was based on the principle that all officials exist to secure ‘Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.’…Your ‘cosmetic’ regulations will never ‘trump’ those principles. The citizen in question is a good man and has committed no crime. He is an upstanding member of this community. He does not have to allow you access to his property for the FDA to conduct random inspections.”

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Is the White Man a racist?

Counter The White man has written about race on this blog. Does that make him a racist? Well, no. Earlier on this blog (in a post which, among other things, gave Abe Lincoln's own words identifying him as one), racism was defined as follows:
The belief that one's own race is superior to all others, and that with that superiority come certain rights and privileges.
My own race, it should be obvious, is European. To specify further (which is not quite so obvious), I am of English extraction. This is my race, but I do not consider it superior to all others. There are those among my race who, however, do. These are adherents of British Israelitism, and they are convinced, from their interpretation of the Bible and history, that the English people, wherever in the world they may live, are God's chosen people-- that only those of my nation are objects of His special favour. They are racists.

Do you see the problem? Their racism is part and parcel of their understanding of the Bible. But how can racism be biblical, when the Bible clearly shows that we are all part of the same human race?

Well, it all comes down to passages in the Bible like this one:
Genesis 27:22 And Jacob (also called Israel) went near unto Isaac his father . . . 26 And his father Isaac said unto him . . . See, the smell of my son is as the smell of a field which the LORD hath blessed: 28 Therefore God give thee of the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, and plenty of corn and wine: 29 Let people serve thee, and nations bow down to thee: be lord over thy brethren, and let thy mother's sons bow down to thee: cursed be every one that curseth thee, and blessed be he that blesseth thee.
Was Jacob a racist?

You see, on the most personal level, a racist believes that "I am superior to others, and that superiority entitles me to certain rights and privileges." Clearly Jacob believed this, and this belief was behind the scheming that ended up with him getting the rights and privileges away from his older brother Esau. But however he got them, he did get them. There's no denying the fact that in historical terms, Israel has fared better than Esau. Better than Ishmael. Better than Lot. Better than Nahor. Better, in short, than any of his other relatives in the earth. Why, for example, were half of the doctors in pre-WWII Hungary Jews? It certainly wasn't because Jews were half the population of Hungary. Why were such a huge percentage of the early nuclear physicists in Germany Jews? It certainly wasn't because Jews were a huge percentage of the population of Germany.

Wherever Jews have gone in the world, they have suffered persecution--even in the land of Israel, 60 years after independence, they are daily targeted for elimination. And yet, wherever Jews have gone in the world, they have prospered. In whatever country takes them in--on whatever terms--Jews rise to the top in fields too numerous to mention.

Is it merely because they believe that their race is superior to all others, and that they are thereby entitled to certain rights and privileges--certain blessings?

Or is it because God said that they actually are?

You see, the White Man is able to disclaim racism with a straight face for only one reason--because he himself is not a member of the favoured race, he doesn't qualify as a racist.

Now, there are only two responses to the realization that the agnate descendants of Jacob are uniquely the objects of God's favour--hatred toward them, or a love and respect. The former are the objects of God's curses, the latter the objects of his blessing.

Take just one example: Adolph Hitler. There is no question that Germany would have had the atomic bomb before any other nation but for one thing: Hitler's oppression of the Jews meant that the top nuclear physicists in his nation--men like Albert Einstein--would be forced to flee to his enemies merely because they were Jews. He went ahead with his nuclear program anyway, using only Teutonic physicists, but at such a delay that the Allies were able to send in special forces to take out his top nuclear facility before it had produced enough heavy hydrogen to make a bomb.

Hitler's single-minded hatred of Jews led him to invade Poland to start off WWII. There were two and a half million Jews in Poland, and Hitler managed to kill just about all of them. But he wasn't done; millions more were in Russia, his ally. So he turned his back on conquering the rest of Western Europe and launched a surprise attack on Russia--where his forces killed millions more Jews. But Russia, that great bear, merely retreated behind a bone-chilling curtain of frost, while Hitler's men, deprived of the attention of Jewish doctors, died by the tens of thousands. Awakened, and armed by Hitler's unconquered enemies, Russia moved in on Germany itself, and--rather than send his last six tank divisions to defend his borders, Hitler ordered them moved into his last remaining ally in Europe, Hungary. Why? Because Hungary had a million Jews, which they refused to give up to the gas chambers. Hitler's forces were able to kill only half a million Hungarian Jews before the gates of Berlin fell to the Russians. Meanwhile, virtually every German woman along the Eastern Front was gang-raped by Russian soldiers (and, to my nation's shame, a large proportion along the Western Front suffered similar treatment): a heavy price indeed to pay for their loyalty to one who so hated God's favoured people.

In short, there are really only two kinds of racism: a racism that springs from an acceptance of the historical implications of God's promised blessings--and curses--; and a racism that springs from a rejection of them.

In that sense, everybody is a racist: either a realistic racist, or a rebellious one.

The White Man, if he must be called a racist, would definitely choose the former. As, for the most part, has his nation.

And may it ever be so.

Or else.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Timo Miller--it's complicated

Well, Timo Miller will soon be safely back in Nicaragua, but yet another "not known to be related" Miller has been handcuffed in his place:

A Virginia man who federal prosecutors say helped a woman leave the country with her daughter so she wouldn't have to turn custody of the girl over to her former lesbian partner surrendered Tuesday to face charges he aided in international parental kidnapping. 

A complaint unsealed Tuesday said Kenneth L. Miller, 46, of Stuarts Draft, Va., arranged passage for Lisa Miller to travel to Canada before flying with her daughter in September 2009 to Nicaragua, where she was sheltered for a time by a group of Mennonite missionaries. Kenneth Miller appeared in U.S. District Court in Burlington, Vt., on Tuesday and was released, said U.S. Attorney Tristram Coffin, who would provide no further information about the case. 

The affidavit made public Tuesday indicated that Timothy Miller had helped provide the information that led to the charges against Kenneth Miller. The affidavit says Timothy Miller arranged passage for Lisa Miller and her daughter, paying for the tickets with his mother-in-law's credit card, but Kenneth Miller had told him he would be reimbursed for the price of the tickets.

So, it wasn't Lisa he was willing to rat on, but his alleged co-conspirator (and fellow Beachy minister). This man is much better prepared for the court battle he faces than was Timo, who was blindsided by the FBI. And the FBI isn't crowing about the arrest this time:

“The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Kenneth L. Miller, 46, of Stuarts Draft, Virginia, surrendered today to face charges stemming from his role in the international parental kidnapping by Lisa Miller of a child who has been the subject of a dispute of parental rights in Rutland, Vermont family court since 2004.
According to the complaint unsealed today, Kenneth L. Miller contacted associates in Nicaragua and Canada to request their support for Lisa Miller as she fled the United States with the daughter she shared with her civil union partner in 2009. The complaint alleges that at Kenneth Miller’s direction, the individuals purchased plane tickets for Lisa Miller and her child to fly from Canada to Nicaragua, and transported Miller and her child from a hotel in Canada to the airport for her flights. The complaint further indicates that Kenneth Miller maintained contact with two cellular telephones that appeared to travel from Virginia to Canada in advance of Lisa Miller’s departure from Canada. A grand jury has previously returned an indictment charging Lisa Miller with international parental kidnapping.
The United States Attorney emphasizes that the charges contained in the complaint are merely accusations and that the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until he is proven guilty. If he is convicted, Kenneth Miller faces a maximum possible sentence of up to three years in prison; however, the actual sentence in the event of a conviction will be determined in accordance with the federal sentencing guidelines and the sentencing factors of 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a). Mr. Miller is represented by Dennis Boyle of Boyle, Autry, and Murphy, Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, and local counsel Brooks G. McArthur of Jarvis, McArthur and Williams.
The United States Attorney commended the U.S. Marshals Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation for their hard work on this matter.”
I sense a cutback in the heated rhetoric that surrounded Timo's arrest.  And that everybody is being more careful--even the FBI.

UPDATE: As in the case of Timo, there is a website set up for those interested in following Ken Miller's case: www.millercase.org. The big difference is that this site is merely a policy statement and not a source of updates [UPDATE: this has since changed, as the site has grown and developed].
I should clarify my statement above, in which I used the colloquial expression "rat on." I don't believe that Timo at any point would be willing to disclose Isabella's location in exchange for his own freedom. He faced three years of detention at most; Isabella, almost ten. Nor was it so simple as a matter of him being released in exchange for "ratting on" Ken Miller. That statement was purely from the apparent perspective of the prosecution, who seem to have very little clue what this case is all about. Timo was out of the country when all of the alleged crimes were committed; thus the prosecution had a very weak case against him. However, since he was not physically in the States, they were able to proceed with the fiction that his crimes had been committed in Vermont.

Ken Miller, however, is an entirely case altogether. The man had already left the country when all this went down, thus has been out of reach of the FBI. Clearly, he returned to the U.S. knowing that he would be arrested once he reached American soil. He is not trying to run from what he did, but is quite willing to take whatever punishment is dished out, should he be found a criminal for what he did out of conscience. But since all of the activities in which the court is interested took place in Virginia, he will insist on being tried there. There is no validity to their claim that he did anything in the "Federal District of Vermont."

Should the Feds admit that Virginia is the place where the deeds were done, expect quite a few more arrests to follow. So far, they've only been biting at the very bottom of the food chain, and there are quite a few people in the chain between Lisa and Ken.

UPDATE February 2013:
I believe that the Feds still have a case against the Baptists who handed off Lisa and Isabella to the Mennonites. In an interesting coincidence, Tip Killingsworth, one of the Baptist suspects, has also gone to Ireland as a missionary in the interim. By choosing to spend the next year--at least--behind bars rather than testify against his Baptist co-conspirators, Ken has complicated the prosecution's case a little. We're still waiting for the other shoe to drop.

UPDATE September 2016:
The other shoe has dropped. But so far only half of the co-conspirators have been tried: Timo will apparently be next.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

A short post, for a change

Counter I wrote earlier about the government regulators running the Amish out of Nebraska. Now, not having any "Krauts" on which to wreak their vengeance, they've gone after the homeschoolers.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Now Syria

Counter
Well, as predicted, there's nothing more to say on the Iran situation, but things are starting to heat up on the Syrian border. Interesting how the US is busy pulling itself out of 2 different war theatres at the same time it appears poised to enter two others.

Here are a number of possible scenarios:

1. The Saudis, who have as much to fear from the Shia theocracy in Iran as the US does, decide to launch an Arab League first strike on Iran, thus leaving it with no nuclear weapons OR justification for launching a counter-strike on Israel. Expect full cooperation from the US, and Israel to look the other way.

2. An Arab-League led invasion of Syria.

3. A 2- or 3-front attack on Israel by Egyptian Sunnis, Lebanese Shias, and Syrians hoping to divert attention from an impending civil war. This is the least likely scenario, but one that must keep Israeli commanders awake at night.

From DEBKA:

Egyptian-Israel gas pipeline sabotaged eighth time since February revolution.
Explosives were planted under the pipe some 60 km west of El Arish, N. Sinai. Flow resumed only this week after seventh attack two weeks ago.


First, Hizballah reported the unmasking of a CIA network in Lebanon. Then, Wednesday, Nov. 23, an Iranian lawmaker Parviz Sorouri, a member of the Iranian parliament's foreign affairs and defense committee, claimed the capture of 12 CIA spies allegedly targeting Iran's military and its nuclear program with the Mossad and regional agencies. Beirut and Tehran had clearly joined forces, DEBKAfile reports to prove they were on top of their security and had smashed dangerous US intelligence networks operating inside their armed forces.

26 Nov. The Syrian crisis assumed a big power dimension this week with the build-up of rival US and Russian naval air carrier armadas in Syrian waters – ranged against and in support of Bashar Assad, DEBKAfile's military sources report. The USS George H.W. Bush arrived Wednesday, Nov. 23, with 70 fighter-bombers and 8 guided missile cruisers and destroyers. Russia's only air carrier the Admiral Kuznetsov is due in mid-week to boost the three Russian warships already anchored off the Syrian port of Tartus.
27 Nov. Twenty-four hours before the Arab League Sunday, Nov. 27, clamped down sanctions on the Assad regime, the first ever against a member state, the armies of Syria's seven neighbors were scrambling for position on standby for acts of retaliation.
Military suspense mounted after the Arab League vote to cut off transactions with Syria's central bank, withdraw Arab funding from projects and other painful sanctions over Bashar Assad's refusal to halt his crackdown on protest.  Military sources in the Gulf report 150 Iranian Revolutionary Guards specialists landed at a military airport south of Damascus on their way to Lebanon to join Hizballah which began bringing its rockets out of their hideouts. Russia is sending Bashar Assad siege-breaking missiles.

28 Nov. A group of military officers from NATO and Persian Gulf nations have quietly established a mixed operational command at Iskenderun in the Turkish Hatay province on the border of North Syria, DEBKAfile's military sources report. Hailing from the United States, France, Canada, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, with Turkish officers providing liaison, they are designated "monitors" tasked with establishing "humanitarian corridors" to serve the victims of Bashar Assad's crackdown. Commanded by ground, naval, air force and engineering officers, the task force in reality aims to take over most of northern Syria.

29 Nov. DEBKAfile reports that the Katyusha rocket volley from S. Lebanon which hit Galilee in northern Israel in the small hours of Tuesday, Nov. 29, was initiated by Hizballah commanders in South Lebanon, although claimed by the al Qaeda-linked Abdullah Azzam Brigades. Hizballah activated a Palestinian cell it controls in the Ain Hilwa refugee camp on behalf of its Damascus ally, arming the cell with the rockets and marking out their firing positions and targets in Israel's Galilee, after a group of NATO and Arab officers quietly established a command in Turkey for intervention in the Syrian crisis. 

A record number of 2,667 infiltrators intercepted on Egyptian-Israeli border in November. A total of 13,500 caught this year. No figures released on the number who made it.