I read this the other day and while I am somewhat shocked to see it in print, I can’t say I’m shocked by the information. Whether it’s true or not I have yet to determine. But if it is we may have a bigger problem than we realized.
According to what I’ve seen, in-house memos now circulating within the banking industry say the DHS has issued orders to banks across America which announce to them that “under the Patriot Act” the DHS has the absolute right to seize, without any warrant whatsoever, any and all customer bank accounts, to make “periodic and unannounced” visits to any bank to open and inspect the contents of “selected safe deposit boxes.”
Further, the DHS “shall, at the discretion of the agent supervising the search, remove, photograph or seize as evidence” any of the following items “bar gold, gold coins, firearms of any kind unless manufactured prior to 1878, documents such as passports or foreign bank account records, pornography or any material that, in the opinion of the agent, shall be deemed of to be of a contraband nature.”
DHS memos also state that banks are informed that any bank employee, on any level, that releases “improper” “classified DHS Security information” to any member of the public, to include the customers whose boxes have been clandestinely opened and inspected and “any other party, to include members of the media” and further “that the posting of any such information on the internet will be grounds for the immediate termination of the said employee or employees and their prosecution under the Patriot Act.”
Safety deposit box holders and depositors are not given advanced notice when failed banks shut their doors. If people have their emergency money in a safe deposit box or an account in a bank that closes, they will not be allowed into the bank to get it out. They can knock on the door and beg to get in but the sheriff’s department or whoever is handling the closure will simply say “no” because they are just following orders.
Remember that the Patriot Act and Patriot Act 2 were written and passed in response to 9/11/2001, by the Bush administration.and
Analysis of the 2003 Domestic Security Enhancement Act, (Patriot Act 2) indicates there doesn’t appear to be a need for an “in-house memo” or “written notices to banks” to enact search and seizure of safety deposit box assets – or any other assets, for that matter:
SECTION 103 allows the Federal government to use wartime martial law powers domestically and internationally without Congress declaring that a state of war exists.
SECTION 106 states that government agents must be given immunity for carrying out searches with no prior court approval. This section throws out the entire Fourth Amendment against unreasonable searches and seizures.
SECTION 122 restates the original Patriot Act assertion that the government has the power of “surveillance without a court order.”
SECTION 123 restates that the government no longer needs warrants and investigations can be “giant drag-net style sweeps.”
SECTION 126 grants the government the right to mine the entire spectrum of public and private sector information from bank records
SECTION 312 gives immunity to law enforcement engaging in spying operation against the American people and places restrictions on court injunctions against Federal violations of civil rights.
Now I must admit I was ignorant of some of these. I knew the government gave itself wire-tapping authority to listen to suspected terrorists and I didn’t have much of a problem with it. After all – I wasn’t saying anything subversive on my phone.
So if this particular article above is true and they’re using the Patriot Act to justify it (even if it hasn’t happened yet) then we have the Bush administration to thank for it. While I continue to believe that George W. Bush did what he believed was best for the safety and security of the country after such a devastating attack from a diabolical enemy, it seems he may have assisted in giving our government somewhat diabolical authority toward its own citizens. And President “I won’t use drones on Americans just because I have the authority” Obama is probably not the guy to have in charge of power like that. With the current situation in Cypress and our own economy projected to fail sooner than later, it may be only a matter of time before these powers are enacted “to protect the country and save the economy.”
Things like this should worry even liberals. If they think Bush violated their rights by signing this stuff into law, how are they going to feel if their liberal hero actually begins to make it happen?