The right against self-incrimination comes from the 5th amendment and it is as follows:
… [No] person shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself…
The right is more broadly applicable than it may seem on its face. Clearly, the right provides protection for a person to refuse to take the witness stand during a trial in which he is the defendant. However, this right also protects a person’s right to refuse to answer questions posed by government agents at any time, except in very limited circumstances (e.g. you should provide your driver’s license, registration, and insurance information to a police officer upon request if you’ve been pulled over in your vehicle).
“Where the people fear the government you have tyranny. Where the government fears the people you have liberty.” — John Basil Barnhill (1914)
This quote is so simple and yet so profound in its truth. How then do we, the people, cause our government to “fear” us so that we may maintain liberty and live free? I believe the answer is in becoming educated about our rights as they are memorialized under the law, especially under the U.S. Constitution. Without knowledge and exercising of our rights, there is no incentive for the government to honor them.
“The fundamental source of all your errors, sophisms and false reasonings is a total ignorance of the natural rights of mankind. Were you once to become acquainted with these, you could never entertain a thought, that all men are not, by nature, entitled to a parity of privileges. You would be convinced, that natural liberty is a gift of the beneficent Creator to the whole human race, and that civil liberty is founded in that; and cannot be wrested from any people, without the most manifest violation of justice.” — Alexander Hamilton, The Farmer Refuted, 1775
According to the founding document of the United States of America, the Declaration of Independence, a just government is one that secures the unalienable rights of every person. Those rights are, in general terms, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (or “life, liberty, and property” in the original “List of Grievances,” 1775).
A question was posed to me recently that deserves a clear answer: “What is political morality?”
It was posed in the context that morality is different from one culture or ideology to the next. I strongly disagree with this notion. Instead, what changes is the culture’s peer pressure or coercion of its members to accept what they know to be immorality. There is a universal morality understood by all humans except a few sociopaths.
The US~Observer has recently started an investigation into what is obviously a scheme to fraudulently obtain ranchers’ and farmers’ property for nothing or next to nothing by using controversial conservation easements. From what we know so far, the major players in this scheme are the State of Colorado, brokers and land trusts made up of or directed primarily by attorneys. At the time of this writing, the US~Observer believes that the ultimate goal of the perpetrators is to get control of the ranchers’ and farmers’ land, which includes water, mining and development rights.
This process in the State of Colorado concerning conservation easements began in 1999, when the land developers asked certain attorneys to design a State bill that would allow tax deductions and tax credits to be generated in exchange for landowners to donate all or portions of their property to go to conservation easements, reportedly to preserve the land for “ranching, farming, and open space,” thereby preserving natural resources. This bill was introduced at a time when the State enjoyed a surplus of tax revenue.
NYE COUNTY, Nev. — In US~Observer‘s last edition, US~Observer Chief of Investigations Edward Snook wrote: “DA Brian Kunzi is almost frantic in his efforts to destroy Shirley Matson. Kunzi appears to be hiding some things that are extremely important (damning) and rest assured, we will find out exactly what they are.”
One of the most expensive residential properties in Tonopah, Nev., is owned by former Nye County Commissioner Joni Eastley and her husband Dennis. Let’s cut right to the chase, readers.
Would you believe the accusations of a convicted felon with a lengthy criminal record who has been in and out of prison and in trouble with the law since 1982 without corroborating his story? Bent County, Colo., Undersheriff Tandy Hasser would and did when she arrested 68-year-old Fritz Sturges based solely on accusations from an officially identified “habitual felony offender” by the name of David Elmo Henry Jr.
Henry’s rap sheet is so long, it appears he seeks to get arrested for something every time he needs a free meal from a government-sponsored jail cell.
The US~Observer published an article in our last edition titled “Wrestling Champ O’Neil — Serial Rapist? Innocent Referee in Prison.” I expected to see fireworks once this sensational, alarming blockbuster was published; but the only response was dead silence.
I did receive numerous complaints on Brian Garvie’s attorney, John Crowley of Seattle. The accusations related to his failure to adequately represent his clients. The complaints received were nearly identical to the complaints that Garvie and his father have related to me.
On Jan. 17, Michael Young of Medford, Ore., breathed a grateful sigh of relief as he received word that multiple, stacked felony sex abuse charges against him had been dismissed.
Young was charged with Rape 1, Sodomy 1, Sex Abuse 2 and 3, and Assault 4 on March 21. Young wasted no time; on March 29, he contacted the US~Observer, and we began our investigation regarding the charges against him.
Jamie Clark sits in prison, convicted of a crime from a tragic and unavoidable accident that occurred in October 2006. Clark’s innocence is backed up by the only eyewitness and hard evidence — evidence that was either withheld, disallowed or falsely refuted by a court whose judge has worked hand in hand with the prosecution.
Clark recently appealed his Sept. 15, 2011, conviction after discovering a Brady and Giglio violation: the court withheld evidence not provided to the defense at trial and permitted false testimony. Clark’s motion for a new trial was denied by Judge John Kastrenakes of the 15th Circuit Court, who was also the original trial judge. Kastrenakes was a prosecutor for nearly 30 years before his judgeship.