June 12th newsletter
They Just Raised a Billion Dollars in New Taxes and Fees
What are YOU going to do about it?
We just finished a legislative season where conservatives and liberty activists got kicked in the teeth along with Oklahoma taxpayers. We counted a billion dollars in new taxes and fees on just a handful of bills alone, no telling what they actual total is. The House will soon be led by a State Chamber Speaker, Rep. Charles McCall, the projected budget for next year is about three quarters of a billion in the hole and all the easy money has been pulled in and who thinks they are going to do anything but raise taxes yet again?
What is needed is a hard campaign against as many tax raising and liberty stealing legislators as can be mustered. Toward that point, the Sooner Tea Party just spent over $8,000.00 setting up a printer that can put out 9000 pages per hour. That sounds like a lot of money but this printer cost $42,000.00 when it was new. We had a factory trained technician come in and check it over and getting talking to a laptop, we have a pallet of 11 x 17 paper coming in on Monday or Tuesday, what we are lacking is enough manpower to do all that we can do.
With this one pallet of paper we can crank out over 16.6 thousand copies of a 24 page magazine. The actual printing time is only twelve hours but much more time will be needed due to loading paper and running the first page through twice to get the third color on the American flag on the cover. But we need volunteers to run the printer, collate, fold, and bag the completed magazine. Then we need volunteers willing to deliver the completed magazine to five House Districts across the state. Most House District primaries turn on a thousand or two thousand votes, we only need to shift five to ten percent in most cases to determine the outcome.
And remember something that is a STP motto: You don't have to win, you just have to punch one of them as hard as you can and the other 148 legislators will never, ever forget what the people can do to them.
The magazine will be delivered to Republican primary voters in those House Districts with some left over for dropping off at coffee shops and senior centers. If you want to help send a message to the politicians that just passed over a billion dollars in new taxes, tax increases, and increased fees we could use your help.
If you can't come help physically there is an enormous amount of work that needs done online. We need some people willing to help set up some Facebook pages, to moderate them, add new content, reply to the voters that post questions. We need help in drawing House and Senate District boundaries on maps using Microsoft Paint (already on all Windows computers). We need help sorting voter registrations for House Districts and Senate Districts that overlap the five House Districts. Anyone can be taught how to do this, free to download Open Office can be used if you don't have Excel. We need research done, emails sent to potential advertisers and donors in those areas. There is something that anyone can do if they have access to a computer and time to post on Facebook. You don’t have to do it all but we need YOU to step up and do some of the work so it gets done before the June 28th primary.
The districts chosen to get the magazine were chosen for the voting records of the legislators. You have seen our RINO Index, that is what was used to rank the targets. Additionally there will be stories on the Civil Asset Forfeiture, the State Questions, the entire 2016 Oklahoma RINO Index, mostly entry level stuff targeting the low info voter. We educate the voters at the same time that we hammer the voting records of the bad politicians.
This effort is the largest project ever planned by grassroots activists and it will continue after the primary, into the run offs, and on into the general election. Individually not many of us can make an impact but a couple hundred willing to do twenty hours of work would make a huge impact on politics here in Oklahoma.
There are those that believe that our country has slid too far and that politics isn’t going to change the course. But the Trump phenomenon showed me that just maybe this election cycle will make a difference. And win or lose, the politicians will fear the reach of the people and vote better in the next legislative session. The old Army saying was sweat now or bleed later. If individuals do not stand up and support the efforts to turn things around I fear our children and grand children will someday have to bleed if they want to recover what our generation lost.
If you can volunteer please respond to this email, just hit reply, and we will be in touch. If you can write or research we will have plenty of projects such as writing articles for the U.S. Congressional district races and recommending the best candidates.
Which Gang Should you Really Fear?
Highway Troopers or Highway Robbers?
Oklahoma has became the butt of jokes after the story about Highway Troopers and Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater’s Drug Interdiction Unit gets caught making a deal with a private company selling a system that will drain debit cards and prepaid cards on the side of the highway. The story came out on the Internet locally, hit the TV stations and exploded across the world in a few days.
The brunt of the criticism landed on the State Troopers but Oklahoma County D.A. David Prater also implemented the program which many feel is worse than the troopers as a lawyer ought to at least do lip service to the 4th Amendment. The Oklahoma Department of Public Safety purchased sixteen ERAD devices capable of stealing data off any credit card, bank debit card, PayPal card, prepaid card, or store gift card. They can also steal the money on the spot or freeze the money for seven days if they bother with due process and a court hearing. This is an expansion of Civil Asset Forfeiture, a supposedly legal process where the person isn’t accused of a crime but his property is. The property or cash or in this case bank account, is considered guilty and it is up to the owner of the property or cash to prove that the property or cash was not used in illegal acts.
The average forfeiture is around $800.00 so the vast majority of people realize it isn’t worth spending thousands of dollars hiring an attorney or waiting for years to recover their property. Proponents of the legalized theft say it is a tool to be used against drug dealers and money launderers yet if that was the case the average forfeiture would be much higher. The process has been used to steal houses, impound dozens of cars at a charity fundraiser event in once case that had the idea to serve alcohol at a party, and there are many stories of innocent people that for whatever reason carried large amounts of cash. One caller on a local radio show told of his deceased brother who had his $30,000.00 inheritance stolen after being stopped on a tail light issue. The brother did not trust banks and after the police stole the cash he simply left the state and later committed suicide from dealing with the loss.
The contract between the ERAD company and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol cost $5000.00 plus $1500.00 for training materials and the private company gets a 7.7% cut of any cash stolen from motorists. Highway Patrol spokesmen claimed that if a person had proof that the money on the gift cards actually belonged to them then the trooper would not seize the funds. The problem is how many of us carry any sort of proof that the debit cards, prepaid cards, or store gift cards in our possession are actually ours? Sure, bank cards are going to have your name on them but the largest user of prepaid cards in Oklahoma is actually the state of Oklahoma, using them for various welfare programs to allow electronic deposit. There are prepaid cards used by Health Savings Accounts, PayPal cards of course, and a lot of businesses use prepaid cards to pay their payroll because it allows quick and cheap electronic deposits. Those cards don’t carry a name on them. Same with store gift cards or prepaid cards purchased instead of traveler’s checks for a vacation or business trip.
A few weeks ago we needed to travel to Florida to inspect and purchase a high speed printing press. All too aware of the risk in carrying large amounts of cash due to Civil Asset Forfeiture, I choose to take a PayPal debit card which is considered a prepaid card by law enforcement, and I thought I was being smart and safe.
Homeland Security developed the ERAD scanners around 2012 in order to suppress drug cartels from moving money to other countries. Then law enforcement saw dollars in their pocket and adopted the practice. According to the company the balance on the card carrying a Visa, Master Card, or American Express logo can be checked, frozen, or seized. The device disguises the balance check as an ordinary vendor to get past the debit card security measures. '
Prepaid cards or store gift cards will have the balanced stored on the card itself. If the cop finds there is a large sum of money on the card or in the account he can use the ERAD device just like a point of sale terminal and either transfer the funds to a law enforcement bank account or he can put a freeze on the money for seven days. The Troopers claim that bank accounts are off limits but the same technology works with a credit card as a bank debit card as a prepaid PayPal card so there is nothing to stop the officer from draining the bank account on the side of the road.
The device also stores the information on the card, card number, expiration date, balance, name of the person owning the account, name of the bank, so the liability of identity theft is huge. The machine also prints out this information on a 2” wide paper tape similar to the standard POS registers or gas pumps. This data along with any notes from the officer are stored in a data base and used to search for additional suspected illicit funding transfers by the card owner or account owner.
The company attempts to claim that prepaid cards are not bank accounts and are not protected by the Bank Secrecy Act and all the safeguards required of owners of Merchant accounts with Visa or Master Card. Those are strict regulations, no printing of any of the card info except for the last four digits on a receipt. Likewise you cannot store any information from the cards without copious security and safeguards. The fig leaf for the company’s excuse is that prepaid cards come from pooled accounts held by financial companies and are cash, not bank accounts and the roadside search of your wallet and credit cards is not a violation of the Fourth Amendment against unreasonable search and seizures. They claim that since the purpose of a magnetic strip on a card is to store information then individuals have no privacy rights against cops reading the cards. I wonder how their spokesperson would feel if someone pushed him up against a wall, removed his wallet, and used a reader on his credit cards?
The OHP claims the ERAD devices are to be used to combat identity theft and indeed cops can see if the persons name are on the prepaid card or gift card and of course they won’t be. They can also see if the account number on the credit card match the account number stored on the magnetic stripe. But when was the last time a Highway Patrolman was called to investigate a stolen identity case? Good luck getting the local police to open up a case over a few hundred dollars much less getting the state police to come off the highway to investigate a local crime.
But we did some research into the actual debit/stored value card industry and found out that some of these cards are indeed linked to bank accounts, thereby coming under the Bank Secrecy Act and FDIC regulations. Prepaid cards or stored value cards started out as local cards used to pay subway fare or telephone calling cards. They carry the balance on the card and the POS device deducts the sale from the balance and stores the new balance on the card. There are no names associated with the card, anyone that gets hold of it can use the card IF he knows the PIN number.
Payroll cards, product rebate cards, givt cards, travel cards, cafeteria cards, and health savings account cards are considered pre paid cards as well as the EZ pay, EagleCash, and Navy Cash cards issued by the military.. Under FDIC regulations and laws implemented by those regulations the FDIC looks for separate accounts set up in the name of the holder of the card to determine who the owner of the account actually is.
But in a lot of cases, the funds are held in one large account and doled out to anyone that has access to the system and has a positive balance on his card. In these cases as long as the financial company keeps track of who owns what amount it is considered as a sub account and the FDIC protections and regulations “pass through” to the sub account holder.
All that is needed is for the financial institution to disclose the existence of the pooled fund or disclose that a custodial relationship exists, something that any court in the land will say exists if person is owed money by a financial institution. Second, the actual identities of the owners and the amount of the balance must be stored by the institution.
The final leg of the stool is that the funds in the account must be owned by the actual owners of the card, again something that any court in the land is not going to deny in the case of a person in possession of a prepaid card without actual proof that the card is stolen. If all three points are there then the FDIC says the person in possession of the card is the owner of the bank funds and FDIC protection passes through to them. Displaying the FDIC logo on the card is encouraged but not required, in fact it is rarely done.
This information came from a 1996 opinion set down by the FDIC agency and their opinion was that all funds underlying stored value cards and other nontraditional access mechanisms are treated as “deposits” if the funds are held at an FDIC insured depository bank. The basis of therule is that the access method is unimportant; it is merely a device for withdrawing funds. All that matters are that the bank be FDIC insured and the money is earmarked for a particular person.
So the answer to the question is quite simple. A card balance that has your name on it somewhere in the chain of card/bank/point of sale vendor is identifiable at several points in the chain. It is a bank deposit by law, not cash that a money hungry police department can pilfer at will.
You Really Haven’t Seen the Violence Against Trump Supporters if you Watch the TV News
HD 51, a Viable Candidate?
By the Watchman
As we promised, we looked into the Democratic competition for House District 51. The seat is currently held by Republican Scott Biggs who has a tendency to vote the way the Oklahoma State Chamber of Commerce tells him to vote. We were hoping that a good viable candidate would challenge Mr. Biggs. We were soon to find that we were sorely disappointed.
The first article of interest we found was this Charles L. Murdock - Ballotpedia
. All this article tells us is that Mr. Murdock is running un-opposed for the chance to run as the Democratic candidate for House District 51. We really have no problem with that if he was truly out there campaigning as if he truly wanted the office. We are finding that that isn’t the case.
The next article of interest we found was this Our Campaigns - Candidate - Charles L. Murdock
. This is another document that appears to have been put out by the State Democratic Party. It also proves the myth that the Democratic Party is well organized is not true. There is little to know information on the candidate on this page other than his name and address.
The next article of interest we found was this Oklahoma Republicans Win 15 Legislative Seats By Default – Oklahoma Grassroots
. We would urge you to open this link and read the entire report. It’s a total of 34 pages long. This report will give you the information on every political race in the state. It will show you who is facing a primary challenge and who is only facing a General Election challenge.
The next article of interest we found was his guardian.ok.gov/PublicSite/Reports/FetchReportToPDF.aspx
. These are the finance records from the Ethics Commission on Mr. Murdock. This is the evidence that proves that he was never serious about running a legitimate campaign for this office to begin with. Sadly that decision has left the residents of House District 51 with a poor choice. The only option you have is to not vote for Mr. Biggs at all which is dangerous because then one vote would win the election, Or you could vote for Mr. Murdock. Once again you are left with the choice of the lesser of two evils.
Change your Vote to Claim you Tried to do the Right Thing?
By the Watchman
As we promised, we would identify all of those Representatives who changed their votes and failed to override the Governor’s veto of informed consent on Vaccinations. Here we present to you the Representative of House District 18, Donnie Condit. Once again we see the first vote as an appeasement to his constituents for the sake of receiving their vote in the upcoming elections. These do not represent Oklahoma values or Oklahoma standards of honesty and fair play. This is more like Chicago style politics than what we should expect. Incidents like this just go to prove why Oklahoma is considered the most corrupt state in the Union.
We started looking at the Representative by going to his brag sheet at www.ok.gov
. Here is what we found Representative Donnie Condit - Oklahoma House of Representatives
. All though this brag sheet doesn’t cover everything, it does tell us enough to understand why he is a Democrat. In an era where most Democrats are changing to Republicans just to get elected, we have to admire his tenacity and courage to stick with the party he’s been with for a very long time.
The next article of interest we found was this Donnie Condit - Ballotpedia
. We learned a lot from this article. We would like to know why they are justified for getting $160.00 a day per-diem for their stay in the capital. In addition we would like to have those records readily available to the public for a full disclosure. We would also like to know if they are being paid per-diem on days they are counted as absent for votes. If you add their base salary and per diem together, these people who pay little attention to the desires of their constituents are making a killing off our tax dollars.
The next article of interest we found was this Oklahoma Representative Donnie Condit [D] | LegiScan
. Now this is only an average article. It does cover the last two sessions, but it misses a key element of both sessions. It fails to mention any of the bills that were brought to the House floor for a vote and failed. Now it is our opinion that if they are going to list the products of a congressional session, they should list them all. Only then can the people have a true feeling of what has been accomplished by their legislator.
The next article of interest we found was this Rainy Day[s] Funding | Oklahoma Observer
. This is an open letter to the Governor by the Representatives of both Districts 17 and 18 requesting assistance for infrastructure after the county was severely damaged by massive amounts of rainfall during the month of May. They only mentioned one county by name, but hinted that the damage existed to the surrounding counties as well. We have been unable to locate a response from the Office of the Governor.
The next article of interest we found was this Donnie Condit - Oklahoma Legislature - Open States
. We found this interesting simply because it showed an estimate of his campaign finances for both his 2010 and 2012 campaigns, but not his 2014 campaign. It also showed some of the latest votes, but once again it failed to show any no votes he made. This just goes to prove that statistics can be manipulated.
The next article of interest we found was this Donnie Condit – ArleneArmy
. The writer of this article is a black Republican who was once kicked out of the GOP Headquarters by Matt Pinnell because he thought she didn’t belong there. When she walked in with several caucasians 5 minutes later, she was welcomed with open arms. This is an article well worth opening the link and watching the video on. This event happened in Calvin, Oklahoma and it was an all candidate forum. You’ll find it very interesting.
We next went to the biography page to see if we could find any additional information here Donnie Condit's Biography - The Voter's Self Defense System - Vote Smart
. There was really nothing new here with the exception of his own family. We will not list them as they have not been a part of this subject. It also indicated that he was a former member of the McAlister City Council.
We next went to the voting records section here Donnie Condit's Voting Records - The Voter's Self Defense System - Vote Smart
. This is well worth you opening and reading. This indicates that we have the rarest of Democrats here. His voting record indicates that we have what is known as a “Blue Dog Democrat.” This is the first that we have seen in a long time. There are none in either chamber of the U.S. Congressional delegation.
Agriculture and food
2015 Oklahoma Farm Bureau Federation 75%
2913 Oklahoma Farm Bureau Federation 100%
There is enough of a difference in these ratings that he should be asked about them during his campaign to remain in office.
Business and Consumers
2014 Research Institute for Economic Development 60%
2013 Oklahoma National Federation of Independent Business 43%
Although these are good numbers for the consumers, they also show a lack of concern for the growth of anything that might help increase the business climate of the area.
Since 2008 the Oklahoma Conservative Political Action Committee has consistently rated him anywhere from 30% to 49% with the exception of 2013. In that year they rated him at 63%. None of these are good, but all of them are expected from a Democrat.
2014 Oklahoma Sierra Club Listed but not rated
2013 Oklahoma Sierra Club A
2012 Oklahoma Sierra Club A
This would indicate that he’s an environmentalist. This is another political position that we find common within the Democratic Party.
2014 Sooner Tea Party 15%
2013 Sooner Tea Party 33%
2011 Sooner Tea Party 70%
This indicates that the longer he has been in office, the more he has been willing to recklessly spend the people’s money. He’s not alone in this. In fact most of the legislators in both chambers are just as guilty.
We went to www.ok.gov/ethicscommittee
to look at his campaign reports. Once again we found that his campaign was full of donations from individual donors. We also found that there were donations from unions, political action committees and special interest groups. None of this was surprising since these groups have traditionally supported Democratic candidates.
The irony of this wishy washy candidate is that he is running unopposed. We, in all good conscious cannot and will not endorse this candidate. The citizens of his district deserve better than a tax and spend blue dog Democrat representing them. We will be keeping an eye on this politician and we would urge any qualified opponent to step up and challenge him as soon as possible.