Updated below.

Reading this report from the Department of Homeland Security while eating lunch almost made me lose it.  This document targets pretty much any conservative or libertarian in the country.  Right in the key findings one can read this little gem.

The DHS/Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) has no specific information that domestic rightwing* terrorists are currently planning acts of violence, but rightwing extremists may be gaining new recruits by playing on their fears about several emergent issues. The economic downturn and the election of the first African American president present unique drivers for rightwing radicalization and recruitment.

The report later defines what they mean by “rightwing.”

Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into those groups, movements, and adherents that are primarily hate oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups), and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government  authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.

Based on this definition, the Constitution Party, Libertarian Party, National Right to Life Committee, the Ku Klux Klan and Aryan Nation for instance are all one in the same.  Really?  No distinctions?

Fox News reports that a DHS official countered that they did “mirror intelligence assessment on leftwing extremism back in January” but as Michelle Malkin notes in reports related to leftwing extremism, they identify specific groups and identify how they are a threat.  Basically what this document says is if you are a conservative you might be dangerous.  DHS apparently believes that the Constitution is a subversive manifesto based on the findings of this report.

Well in celebration of my new status as a potential terrorist threat I’m going to a tea party.  Care to join me?

Update: Dave Rehbein, the National Commander of the American Legion wrote an open letter to DHS Secretary Napolitano.

2nd Update (4/15/09): DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano issued a statement on the report.

27 comments
  1. Fortunately for them, we conservatives are a relatively peaceful bunch. If we weren't they couldn't handle the sheer numbers of us.

    Of course, you never know. There's “no specific information” but we “may be” plotting something.

  2. We are living in a whole new world, this is not the country for freedom loving people anymore. Everybody execpts the government to pay their bills and for the government to take care of their needs.
    I am just about ready to move the the Republic of Texas, where Gov. Perry has taken aim at the federal government saying that it “has become to oppressive in its size, its intrusion into the lives of our citizens, and its interference with the affairs of our state.”
    I am ready for the TEA party west of the gold dome tomorrow! I'll see you there Shane!

  3. Don't flatter yourself, I'm pretty sure they recognize bloggers and their readers generally lack the courage of their convictions, even if they do endorse revolution.

    What they're concerned about is stuff like this:
    http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2009/02/m
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/07/us/07pittsbur
    http://www.stormfront.org/forum/showthread.php?…

    Left-wing terrorist groups exist in the U.S., and they're equally despicable, and a serious problem. But when you try to minimize the very real fact that there's a growing movement of people who believe Obama is a terrorist, a socialist, a drug-peddler, a secret muslim, etc. who isn't really a citizen and therefore not really the president, you just look like a fool who would happily aid and abet evil while not actually participating in it.

    More moderate conservatives may think stories like this DHS report are funny, or they validate a victim complex that been in place since your guy lost the election, but the reality is these people are out there and the fact that Obama is president is driving them crazy and could drive them to violence. Perhaps a repeat of the Oklahoma City-type violence that doesn't discriminate between conservatives and liberals, it just kills and destroy.

    Trust me my friend, if Obama sends out the jack-booted thugs to round you up because you read Ann Coulter, I'll defend to the death your right to hold an opinion I don't. But when you ridicule the growing threat of these groups and denounce it as partisan politics, I think you do your own party a great disservice.

    If you don't want to go the way of the Whig, the GOP needs to get it together, quit whining and playing the victim, and get to participating in American politics without a sneer. Think about that while you're out teabagging tomorrow. I'm sure you'll see a few of those Stormfront folks out there, be sure to say hi!

  4. First off, the title of the post was a joke.

    Secondly when DHS discusses groups like left-wing terrorists they name names. That wasn't the case with this report. Their definition was too broad.

    What did the report say, “has no specific information that domestic rightwing* terrorists are currently planning acts of violence” so why the report? And why send it to police departments? And why be so stinking broad. It seems incredibly politically charged and that is a misuse of DHS.

    Exactly what groups are the threat? Name them. All this report did was paint all “right wingers” with a broad brush and is of no use to law enforcement agencies.

  5. “a joke”

    Ah, yes, the old “lame attempt at humor” cop-out. Like I said, you lack the courage of your convictions, but you'll happily aid and abet evil.

    “It seems incredibly politically charged and that is a misuse of DHS.”

    Yes, yes, I got your simplistic point when I read your post. I wonder if you'd return me the favor of getting my point?

    “Exactly what groups are the threat? Name them.”

    Exactly what group was Timothy McVeigh a member of? What group are those nazis on Stormfront who believe teabagging day will be the start of the revolution a part of? Just because there's not an easily identifiable and classifiable as “terrorist” group to point out means nothing and you know it.

    “Two of the websites you list mention individuals… not groups and this is not a new threat by any means. You'll always have your nut cases. Also, just because the Tea Parties are mentioned on a racist site doesn't mean it's a white supremacist event. So if they show up they'll likely be disappointed.”

    Good job missing my point… no one's claiming it's a racist event (nice strawman, BTW) – I'm merely pointing out that there are verifiable instances of these nutcases using events like the tea parties as an excuse to push their cause.

    “only seen liberals calling going to TEA (Taxed Enough Already) parties as teabagging”

    I'll enlighten you:
    http://www.hollow-hill.com/sabina/images/teabag

  6. You know David it's great that you can point out these groups. You probably should be working for the DHS so you could have written the report.

    My point is that Stormfront wasn't mentioned in the report. They should have focused on this group if it is a problem.

    And I don't doubt you that it is.

  7. Yeah I've not been a big fan of some aspects of the Patriot Act, or was terribly excited about the creation of a new government department.

    My beef with this report is that there is no “who? what? when? where? or why?” It is a bunch of conjecture – really seems to be a political statement than anything else. It didn't provide any intelligence at all. What really was the value of the report for law enforcement? None.

  8. As long as the terror alert level remains at 'burnt umber' or above, I'm afraid that info is handled on strictly need-to-know basis.

  9. Have you clicked your own link to the report?

    “Hotlinking content is bad internet karma.
    Shame on you, Fox News. Shame on you, Rush Limbaugh.
    You have servers and advertisers. I pay this out of pocket. Get your own damn
    bandwidth.”

    LOL

  10. I appreciate it, and I look forward to reading your wrap-up… I'll check and see if you posted one once I'm done replying here.

  11. Are you going to address one single point I've made in a reasonable fashion, or are you just going to continue to backtrack and act clever?

    Seriously, I'm not trying to be condescending… but you're spending more time trying to nitpick inconsequential bits of what I say to snipe at than you are addressing my points.

    But since you bring it up; I'm quite sure DHS is aware of Stormfront, which is why you won't see any out-and-out calls to violence on those message boards – they're smart enough to know they're being watched. But the DHS is smart enough to recognize that Stormfront is not an organized group, it's a public internet forum. Its members range from the retarded to the dangerous. Most won't ever leave their basement and are no real concern, but some need to be watched.

    Did you read the report? Or did you just take the talking point that “the report mentions no specific threat or group, so therefore all conservatives are targeted!” and run with it?

    “DHS/I&A assesses that lone wolves and small terrorist cells embracing violent rightwing extremist ideology are the most dangerous domestic terrorism threat in the United States.”

    Lone wolves and small cells. No identifiable group that can be pointed to, so they're trying to put out an alert to be on the watch for acquisition of explosives and firearms and other decidedly suspect behavior by small radical groups of “neo-Nazis, skinheads, and other white supremacists”.

    Additionally, they're trying to make people aware of the various types of people who may be vulnerable to the chicken-hawks who seek out young men who've fallen on hard times and seek to exploit their frustration to do violence while keeping their own cowardly hands clean, presumably so we can help them and prevent them from falling in with nut cases.

    Well, I'm not going to summarize all the key points in the report for you, go read it.

    Like I said the first time around, the report has nothing to do with creating a blanket characterization that all conservatives are potential terrorists, and if you've read the report you know that – otherwise you're just being intellectually dishonest.

    I'll repeat my original point as succinctly as possible – when you make jokes and play the victim over a report like this, you put your party and your principles 2 steps back. Go ahead and ignore the growing threat, go ahead and laugh and joke and tacitly support the kind of insanely ignorant accusations being thrown around by the nut cases for political gain… and let me know how that works out in 2010.

  12. Wouldn't the Southern Baptist Convention, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and, indeed, even individual congregations fit under this definition? Frightening. What next?

  13. Yes I did read the report.

    If the language in the report was ok, why did Secretary Napolitano apologize? – http://www.foxnews.com/politics/first100days/20

    Why did the liberal, not a blue-dog, top Democrat on the Homeland Security Congressional Committee object to the language – http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/apr/15

    The Washington Times Editorials slams DHS – http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/apr/16/sca

    Jonah Goldberg expresses clearly why conservatives are concerned – http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=ODgzMT

    Contrast it with the DHS report on left-wing extremism – http://www.foxnews.com/projects/pdf/Leftwing_Ex

    Probably the main problem with the report is the opening description of “right-wing” terrorists, as well as, how returning veterans are treated.

    We'll have to agree to disagree.

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