Politics in Minnesota
April 22nd, 2009
At noon this Saturday, the local branch of the “End the Fed” group will have a demonstration against the Federal Reserve Bank in downtown Minneapolis; supporters are trying to have demos at every Fed facility nationwide. Here, participants will walk around the local branch of America’s public/private central banking entity, and advocate for shutting it down.
Of course, the Fed has a much higher public profile now than it had even a few months ago, as its roles in dealing U.S. Treasuries, operating new bailout conduits, and regulating the financial system have all attracted ever more interest from the public. On the other hand, the region under the authority of the Minneapolis Fed hasn’t seen the same levels of fiscal calamity as other regions, which must reflect fairly well on its stewardship of the regional economy.
It’s interesting that the demo has attracted a variety of speakers from around the spectrum. After a bit of a march, speeches, music and sign waving will commence. Byron Dale, a contributor to the local Money as Wealth blog, 2006 Independence Party gubernatorial candidate Pam Ellison, frequent Green Party candidate Michael Cavlan, Patriot AM1280 radio host Jeremy Payne (Beyond the Left Right Paradigm airs at 7 p.m. Sundays), U.S. Rep. Ron Paul‘s (TX-14) son, Dr. Rand Paul, and Michael Overland.
One important item certain not to be overlooked by demonstration participants: recently leaked confidential counter-terrorism analyses, generally produced by new post-9/11 “fusion centers,” have little love for anti-Fed demonstrators — seemingly equating movements that proudly label themselves “patriotic” with dangerous militarism and the big catch-all keyword, “radicalization.”
As the MnIndy points out, some Minnesota Christians are incensed over the Department of Homeland Security’s controversial analysis called “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.” Tom Pritchard posted on the Minnesota Family Council blog about it, and it got a lengthy treatment from Dan McGrath at Minnesota Majority.
Most recently, word leaked that the Maryland National Guard had issued detailed warnings and intelligence about the recent tea party demonstrations, which revealed that military units are tracking anti-tax protest events (the Maryland doc indicates that the Pentagon’s new Northcom command authority evaluates demonstrations for “Force Protection” concerns). A now-infamous analysis issued by the Missouri Information Analysis Center cited the fairly entertaining anti-Fed Internet videos “Zeitgeist” and “America: Freedom to Fascism” as two-thirds of the example media of the “Modern Militia Movement.”
Law enforcement isn’t just concerned about people demonstrating against the printing of more fiat currency. Of course, prior to the RNC, law enforcement anxiety around here was directed more towards the anti-authoritarian left than the anti-authoritarian right — the leading example being the local Joint Terrorism Task Force’s efforts to recruit spies for vegan potlucks. Now, perhaps even meat-eaters have reason for concern.
[What does the definition of “extremism” mean, anyway? Regardless of one’s political orientation, for the nuts and bolts of this stuff, don’t miss Tom Burghardt‘s site, Anti-Fascist Calling, which featured the official law enforcement analysis lexicon of many loaded terms, now available as a PDF.]