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Anonymous

The cost of dissent
    #1785025 - 08/06/03 02:49 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Not a word of this is my own...
---------------------------------

SHERMAN AUSTIN SENTENCED TO ONE YEAR IN FEDERAL PRISON

Sherman Austin, webmaster of RaisetheFist.com, was sentenced today, August 4, 2003, to one year in federal prison, with three years of probation. Judge Wilson shocked the courtroom when he went against the recommendation of not only the prosecution, but the FBI and the Justice Department, who had asked that Austin be sentenced to 4 months in prison, and 4 months in a half-way house, with 3 years of probation.

Austin's probation stipulates, among other things, that (1) he cannot possess or access a computer of any kind without prior approval of his probation officer, (2) if his probation officer gives permission, the equipment is subject to monitoring and is subject to search and seizure at any time, without notice, (3) he cannot alter any of the software or hardware on any computer he uses, (4) he must surrender his phone, DSL, electric, and satellite bills, (5) he cannot associate with any person or group that seeks to change the government in any way (be that environmental, social justice, political, economic, etc.), and (6) he must pay over $2,000 in fines and restitution. Austin must surrender himself to the Federal Bureau of Prisons by September 3, 2003.

To contact sherman, email keepfistraised@yahoo.com

FROM SHERMAN AUSTIN:

On Jan 24, 2002, my home was surrounded and raided by approximately 25 heavily armed FBI and Secret Service agents in one of the governments first attempts to exercise the new US Patriot Act. I was interrogated for several hours while they ransacked my room and they seized a network of computers which I used to run my web site raisethefist.com. They also seized protest signs, and political literature. Their excuse was a protest guide (which I didn't author) that was posted to my site which a small portion contained information on explosives. The FBI had been monitoring the site long before this was ever posted, and long before Sept 11. The "explosives information" on my site (again which I didn't author) doesn't compare to what you an find on any other web sites such as howthingswork.com, Loompanics.com, Bombshock.com, Totse.com, Amazon.com, or the many neo nazi web sites which cover everything from assassinations, explosives, fraud and firearms. It's obvious a web surfer interested in making a bomb or taking part in other extra-illegal activities would not have to rely on Raisethefist.com. So how could the "bomb making information" on raisethefist.com be a concern to authorities? It wasn't a concern, it was simply used an excuse to exercise the new Patriot Act and take down the site. And that's what they did when federal agents spent 5-6 hours interrogating me while they disassembled each computer one by one , mirrored each hard drive, then loaded everything into a big white truck. During this whole process I was told I wasn't going to be arrested, and that I could even leave if I wanted to. Once the agents finished packing everything up, Special Agent John I. Pi, who was conducting the investigation and raid said that I had crossed a line, and as long as I got back on the other side of that line I'd be okay.

A week later despite what happened I still continued with my plans to attend the demonstration against the World Economic Forum in NY. As I was waiting for the march to begin, a swarm of NYPD officers rushed straight at me and scooped up about 26 people, one of which was me. We sat on a bus for 7 hours before being taken to Brooklyn Navy Yard Jail. I was there for about 30 hours before I was taken out of my cell and put into a backroom in handcuffs and interrogated once again by the FBI and Secret Service for several hours. They asked me questions such as if I was a terrorist or involved in any terrorist organizations. During the interrogation I noticed more and more agents walking through the room. I was told I wouldn't leave custody unless they searched my car. I said I had nothing to hide and simply wanted to go home. Stressed and aggravated, I signed over my keys. A few minutes later I was driven to the court and released. As I was waiting for someone to pick me up, about 5 FBI agents entered the court and said I was arrested for "distribution of information related to explosives over the internet". One of the agents grabbed my neck and told me to shut the fuck up while I tried to tell one of the legal observers I was being arrested. I was hurried out of the court house into a black SUV where I was driven to a federal building. I was then taken to lower Manhattan MCC maximum security 24 hour lockdown federal jail facility. At my bail hearing the FBI called me a "man on a mission" and said I drove 3,000 miles to carry out my alleged "plot". The judge said I was a "threat to the community" and denied me bail, and I was to be extradited back to California to face my charges. After 11 days I was shackled and taken to an airforce base where federal inmates are boarded onto planes surrounded by guards with M16's and shot guns, like prisoners of war, and flown to a federal jail "hub" in Oklahoma. Once I got there, I learned the next day that the prosecutors decided not to file an indictment. I was released after spending 13 days in custody. When I got back to Los Angeles I put raisethefist.com back up almost immediately. I continued my political organizing within the community, as well as my work with Raise the Fist which developed into a Direct Action Network with chapters setup around the world. 6 months later prosecutors contacted my lawyer and said they found nothing to prosecute me for on my computers, but didn't want to "let me off the hook". They offered me a pre-indictment binding plea agreement which was initially 1 month in jail, and 5 months in a "community corrections facility". I rejected the plea at first, wanting to go to trial until we discovered the case was eligible for a terrorism enhancement, which could have added 20 years to my sentence.

I therefore decided to enter a plea. I played months of legal limbo until I finally expected to get sentenced to 4 months in jail and 4 months in a community corrections facility based on the final pre-sentencing report written by the USPO. The judge rejected the 4 months saying what kind of an example would it set for "future revolutionaries" wanting to act in the same manner. He stated he wanted to give me at least 8-10 months but first wanted the opinion of the Justice Department and the Director of the FBI in Washington, DC (Robert Muller). My sentencing was rescheduled several times until August 4th. I was convicted for felony; distribution of information related to explosives with intent, and sentenced to 1 year in federal prison with 3 years supervised release.

Distribution of information related to explosives is not illegal.. What's illegal is the INTENT part. They have to prove you have intent to use the information to cause further crime of violence .. and how do they prove intent? I think Bush made it clear when he said "you're either with me or against me".

Remember, fascism and a police state doesn't come all at once, it comes piece by piece. How far will we allow it go until we are all locked up in concentration camps.

If we don't take matters into our own hands and do something about this now, then we are already prisoners of war.

Raisethefist.com is not shutting down, and the RTF Direct Action Network will continue to grow and remain active. A 1 year sentence is not the end of this. It's just the begining.


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Anonymous

Re: The cost of dissent [Re: ]
    #1785039 - 08/06/03 02:54 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Question: Is the United States a police state?

Answer: Yes.

Thanks for posting that.


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OfflineGernBlanston
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Registered: 05/28/03
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: ]
    #1785076 - 08/06/03 03:06 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

5 POINT PLATFORM
1. We want freedom. We want self-organized communities in which the land, produce, and machinery of production will be owned by the community, and the power of the political and class state abolished. We support the initiative for revolutionary unionizing. Workers should control the means of production to insure equal distribution within the community.

2. We want direct democracy, the right of every individual to participate in the organization of their own community and their own lives.

3. We are dedicated to revolutionary working class struggle against the system of white supremacy, capitalism, sexism, state, and any other forms of social or political oppression. A revolutionary initiative is defined by a course of direct action, meaning we believe taking matters into our own hands is the only way to effectively achieve social change rather than relying on a system that is repeatedly failing us.

4. We seek to rid our planet from the exploitation and degradation of our natural environment. We want a safe and clean ecological environment for all living things to grow in.

5. We want self-defense. We cannot rely on the system to protect us from it's own brutality, racism, murder and repression of our communities. We must rely on our communities to defend themselves by any means necessary at any given time.


(From the RTF Website)

Yah. Sounds like a horrible threat to America. Jeezuz. Might be a horrible threat to Amerika, but I wish to hell we had more people out there like this.

Scared YET?


--------------------
There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.
  --  Howard Zinn


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OfflineAzmodeus
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: ]
    #1785096 - 08/06/03 03:10 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

He was incredibly stupid to settle for a plea agreement when he did nothing wrong.  Im sure american justice would have done the right thing....he just had to be honest. :smirk:

Still thats pretty crazy!  i wonder how many cases like this we don't hear about....actually nevermind....id rather not know. :mad:


--------------------
"Know your Body - Know your Mind - Know your Substance - Know your Source.

Lest we forget. "


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OfflineGernBlanston
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Azmodeus]
    #1785104 - 08/06/03 03:11 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Quote:

Azmodeus said:
He was incredibly stupid to settle for a plea agreement when he did nothing wrong.  Im sure american justice would have done the right thing....he just had to be honest. :smirk:





LMAO :smile:  Ok - now THAT's the funniest thing I've heard all day! :grin: 


--------------------
There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.
  --  Howard Zinn


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Invisiblesuperpimp
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: ]
    #1785205 - 08/06/03 03:46 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

So the guy is in jail. Who gives a shit?


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Offlineshakta
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: GernBlanston]
    #1785206 - 08/06/03 03:46 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Alrighty then. This guy deserves to be in jail. He should have gotten a longer term. According to his detention hearing two molatov cocktails were found at his house. The website had instuctions on how to attack police, and plans for building all sort of bombs, along with ways of not getting caught if your bomb doesn't go off. This guy sounds like a McVeigh starter kit, and I personally feel safer with him off the street.

http://cryptome2.org/usa-v-sma-dht.htm


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OfflineAzmodeus
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: shakta]
    #1785533 - 08/06/03 05:23 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Shatka you missing the point...HE DIDN'T WRITE THE INSTRUCTIONS!!!!!

/sarcasm


--------------------
"Know your Body - Know your Mind - Know your Substance - Know your Source.

Lest we forget. "


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Offlineshakta
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Azmodeus]
    #1785550 - 08/06/03 05:28 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Yeah, I guess that makes it OK. To the rest of you that think this guy is some kind of hero, you need to get a clue. Voicing your dissent legally is fine and I would even encourage it. When you plot to cause destruction or harm people you cross the line, and deserve to be in jail. This guy got what he deserved.


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Invisiblesuperpimp
The boss of thefamily

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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: shakta]
    #1785568 - 08/06/03 05:34 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Agreed.


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OfflineAzmodeus
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: superpimp]
    #1785827 - 08/06/03 06:46 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Of course when they storm into your house without warning, probably without a warrant....and then say you can leave if you want, they can "find" anything they wish to.

Not saying they did, but look at your "he got what he deserved" attitude...this emotion comes from 9/11 and its exploitation....it keeps americans from questioning events like this..., and its only a small matter before this could be done to anyone....i mean look how he shit his pants and went for teh plea after they threatened "terrorist charges".



--------------------
"Know your Body - Know your Mind - Know your Substance - Know your Source.

Lest we forget. "


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OfflineBaby_Hitler
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Azmodeus]
    #1785845 - 08/06/03 06:55 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Charles Manson never personally killed anybody. The only crimes he ever committed were "speech crimes".

He said "Go kill these people."


--------------------


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Invisiblesuperpimp
The boss of thefamily

Registered: 06/11/01
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Azmodeus]
    #1785866 - 08/06/03 07:02 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

I don't host a website where I tell people how to blow up other people and property in order to overthrow the government, so I'm not too worried about being raided and charged with terrorism.

If I did host such a site, I would expect to be watched and possibly charged with crimes. That's sort of the way things work. Why is that so hard to understand?


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Offlineshakta
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Azmodeus]
    #1785869 - 08/06/03 07:02 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Quote:

Azmodeus said:
Of course when they storm into your house without warning, probably without a warrant....and then say you can leave if you want, they can "find" anything they wish to.

Not saying they did, but look at your "he got what he deserved" attitude...this emotion comes from 9/11 and its exploitation....it keeps americans from questioning events like this..., and its only a small matter before this could be done to anyone....i mean look how he shit his pants and went for teh plea after they threatened "terrorist charges".






Did you even read the link I posted? If not quit talking out of your ass like you know what you are talking about. They had a search warrant. They found bombs and bomb making materials in his house. He posted crap on his website about how to injure or kill other people and get away with it. It has nothing to do with 9/11. He was a domestic terrorist in waiting, and he is being punished for it. He knew he was guilty so he got his little plea bargain. I aplaud the judge for making an example out of him. The guy is a nutjob that needs to be locked up. Maybe his young dumb ass will figure out the right way to protest while he is getting pounded in the ass in prison. This jerk off said he wanted to bomb the Olympics on his website.

Bottom line...

He is a jackass and got what he deserved.


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InvisibleEdame
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: shakta]
    #1785907 - 08/06/03 07:23 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Quote:

shakta said:
Yeah, I guess that makes it OK. To the rest of you that think this guy is some kind of hero, you need to get a clue. Voicing your dissent legally is fine and I would even encourage it. When you plot to cause destruction or harm people you cross the line, and deserve to be in jail. This guy got what he deserved.




So what about that whole American Revolution thing then? I don't recall that whole episode "voicing dissent legally" either. Your country (I'm assuming you're American) was made by people who violently overthrew their government. As far as I can see, this guy was providing information on how to do the same thing, but the government threw him in jail. How does your well armed militia respond to a tyrannical government if they are arrested for even mentioning revolution?


--------------------
The above is an extract from my fictional novel, "The random postings of Edame".
:tongue:

In the beginning was the word. And man could not handle the word, and the hearing of the word, and he asked God to take away his ears so that he might live in peace without having to hear words which might upset his equinamity or corrupt the unblemished purity of his conscience.

And God, hearing this desperate plea from His creation, wrinkled His mighty brow for a moment and then leaned down toward man, beckoning that he should come close so as to hear all that was about to be revealed to him.

"Fuck you," He whispered, and frowned upon the pathetic supplicant before retreating to His heavens.


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Anonymous

Re: The cost of dissent [Re: shakta]
    #1785917 - 08/06/03 07:25 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

they found bombs at his place?

if they found bombs at his place, i don't see how there is any debate here about this guy's intentions or guilt.


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Offlineshakta
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Edame]
    #1785926 - 08/06/03 07:28 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Well if that was why he was arrested then I would agree with you. Since it isn't the reason he was arrested you don't have an argument really. Do you think it is hard to have a revolution when the majority has no interest in one? I do. If people want change they have to get involved. He was doing that, but he took it to far. Building bombs and wanting to kill people is not how you get change, it is how you end up in jail. Personally if I was around and someone was trying to get a cop by themselves to do him harm I would help the cop beat them down.


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Offlineshakta
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: ]
    #1785930 - 08/06/03 07:30 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Quote:

mushmaster said:
they found bombs at his place?

if they found bombs at his place, i don't see how there is any debate here about this guy's intentions or guilt.




Yep. Molotov (sp?) cocktails in various forms. There was also some stuff about an empty gas can, electrical wire, and fertilizer found in his car, but I have not seen how true that was.


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InvisibleEdame
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Re: The cost of dissent [Re: shakta]
    #1785992 - 08/06/03 07:51 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

According to this CNN report:

Quote:

Austin, 20, pleaded guilty in February to distributing information related to explosives.




It doesn't seem to say anything about him being charged with actually posessing explosives, or that he intended to do anything with the two Molotov cocktails that your links says they found.


--------------------
The above is an extract from my fictional novel, "The random postings of Edame".
:tongue:

In the beginning was the word. And man could not handle the word, and the hearing of the word, and he asked God to take away his ears so that he might live in peace without having to hear words which might upset his equinamity or corrupt the unblemished purity of his conscience.

And God, hearing this desperate plea from His creation, wrinkled His mighty brow for a moment and then leaned down toward man, beckoning that he should come close so as to hear all that was about to be revealed to him.

"Fuck you," He whispered, and frowned upon the pathetic supplicant before retreating to His heavens.


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Invisiblesuperpimp
The boss of thefamily

Registered: 06/11/01
Posts: 8,706
Loc: Philadelphia/NYC
Re: The cost of dissent [Re: Edame]
    #1785999 - 08/06/03 07:54 PM (13 years, 4 months ago)

I'm sure he had no bad intentions with the Molotov cocktails. They were probably just party favors.


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