Here are two extremely different views of what happened Wednesday. Can we agree that some views are infinitely more reliable than others?
First, a person who identifies himself as Terry Bouton, an historian and author of Taming Democracy: “The People,” the Founders, and the Troubled Ending of the American Revolution (Oxford University Press), offered an account on Twitter. He says he and his wife attended the protest as observers and stayed around for the assault on the Capitol:
My wife and I attended the “Stop the Steal” Txxxx Insurrection on Wednesday (as observers, NOT participants) and there are FIVE big take-aways from what we witnessed and heard outside the Capitol that I’d like to share.
1) This insurrection wasn’t just redneck white supremacists and QAnon kooks. The people participating in, espousing, or cheering the violence cut across the different factions of the Republican Party and those factions were working in unison.
Preppy looking “country club Republicans,” well-dressed social conservatives, and white Evangelicals in Jesus caps were standing shoulder to shoulder with QAnon cultists, Second Amendment cosplay commandos, and doughy, hardcore white nationalists.
We eavesdropped on conversations for hours and no one expressed the slightest concern about the large number of white supremacists and para-military spewing violent rhetoric. Even the man in the “Camp Auschwitz” sweatshirt wasn’t beyond the pale. They were all “patriots.”
I’m sure there were Republicans there who were horrified by what was happening. But the most common emotions we witnessed by nearly everyone were jubilation at the take over and anger at Democrats, Mike Pence, non-Txxxx supporting Republicans, and the Capitol Police.
2) There is no doubt the Capitol was left purposefully understaffed as far as law enforcement and there was no federal effort to provide support even as things turned very dark. This contrasts sharply with all of other major protests we have attended.
A lot has been made of the contrast to the overwhelming police presence at Black Lives Matters protests in the fall, and this is certainly true. But there was also A LOT more federal law enforcement presence at every single previous protest we have attended in DC.
Most of these protests involved tens of thousands of mostly white, middle-aged people (meaning race wasn’t the only reason for the disparate police presence). Even the March for Science had far more police for a non-partisan event featuring “Bill Nye the Science Guy.”
By contrast, there was a tiny federal police presence at “Stop the Steal” despite weeks of promises of violence spread on social media by well-known far-right radicals, many of whom had long histories of inciting violence.
When we arrived, the only forces present were the clearly overwhelmed Capitol Police. The only reinforcements that arrived were other Capitol Police. There were a handful of DC Metro police, but they had accompanied the ambulances to take away the injured.
The only other federal law enforcement presence was an FBI Swat team of about eight officers who arrived to provide cover for the Capitol Fire and EMTs there to extract Ashli Babbitt, the QAnon radical who was shot inside the Capitol Building.
Once the FBI team got Babbitt out, they left and no other federal officers arrived in the more than two hours that followed. The small Capitol Police force was left to deal with the chaos by themselves.
3) The Txxxx rioters only supported law enforcement as long as they believed law enforcement was supporting them. Rioters, many carrying Thin Blue Line flags, seemed convinced that the Capitol Police would turn against the government and join them.
Numerous rioters shouted at the police, saying some version of “we had your back, now you need to have ours.” All of the Capitol officers we saw—Black, white, Latino, male, female—seemed alarmed by what was happening and continued to try to do their job faithfully.
And the crowd reviled them for it. They booed the police and FBI swat team, calling them traitors and murderers. A man on the back Capitol steps ripped up a Thin Blue Line flag, the torn stripes fluttering down over a crowd briefly chanting “fuck the police.”
4) There were also no clear crowd rules imposed for Stop the Steal like there were for all the other protests we have attended. All of the “liberal” protests of the last four years we attended had a long list of things you could not bring that were enforced at the Capitol.
At these protests, there were no poles or sticks, no backpacks, no weapons or body armor, etc. There were sometimes security check points to go through to get onto the mall or Capitol grounds.
None of these standard rules applied to Stop the Steal. There were poles and flags and backpacks and body armor EVERYWHERE. We didn’t see any guns or knives. But there were certainly people brandishing flag poles as if they were weapons.
5) These people are serious and they are going to keep escalating the violence until they are stopped by the force of law. There were many, many people there who were excited by the violence and proud and excited about the prospect of more violence.
And it wasn’t just the white nationalists, Second Amendment radicals, and QAnon boneheads. I can’t adequately describe the blood lust we heard everywhere as we walked over the Capitol grounds, even from mild-mannered looking people.
The most alarming part to me was the matter-of-fact, causal ways that people from all walks of life were talking about violence and even the execution of “traitors” in private conversations, like this was something normal that happened every day.
I am convinced that if Congress doesn’t act to do something about this quickly, these people are going to keep going and the unrest and violence will get more widespread and more uncontrollable. This is a crisis. It’s real. It’s happening. It must be taken seriously.
Second, Brian Leiter, a professor at the University of Chicago, posted something he says he received from a friend. It’s said to be an email from the head of an actual New York City investment firm:
From: Blackhawk Partners [email address omitted]
Date: January 8, 2021 at 3:43:24 PM EST
To: [name omitted]
Subject: It ain’t over yet. something BIG is about to happen.
Thanks much for being a loyal reader of my letters. If you think you’ve received this email by error, simply remove yourself from the list. No worries.
If interested in supporting me, I appreciate you forwarding this email along to help bypass the censorship of conservative/capitalist reports & opinions.
With 100,000 followers on board, my team and I are committed to start changing the narrative in America. It is high time for disruption. The alternative is “misery”.
The American Revolution 2.0 is upon America. That was the WORST staged event at the US Capitol that I have ever seen. Everyone of those ACTORS that ended up in the Capitol Building were hired actors. There was ZERO Police Presence at the Capitol Building and I am glad that Txxxx got out of Washington. We are watching the Coup come to an end and it was interesting to see that the MSM are naming it a coup and it really is a Coup. A coup against Txxxx. Anyway Txxxx is at an Elite Military Communications Base in Abilene, Texas where he is watching his Vice President finish his Presidency as he sits in the Bird Seat. Get ready for some big announcements. America is on the Brink. Treason is the End Game.
Fakestream Media continues to manipulate the world into thinking the U.S. Capitol insurgency was the fault of President Txxxx, asking for the 25th amendment, while Schumer and Pelosi et al are pushing the DoJ to go after Txxxx for inciting a riot to overthrow the government.
THEY are saying that all MAGA / Txxxx supporters are “Domestic Terrorists,” especially “Q-Anon followers.”
The hypocrisy by the communist left is over-the-top as NOTHING was said by these bastards about ANTIFA / BLM fire and destruction on the streets of America.
What THEY are not wanting the fakestream media to talk about is….WE in the Patriot Movement have the intel and WE understand that ANTIFA led the MAGA cattle to a deadly slaughter at the Capitol. WE all have the footage and intel on two particular ANTIFA thug chiefs.
The American public are being hoodwinked by the communist force that continues their coup against President Txxxx.
Txxxx MUST prevail and if he has NO support to begin massive arrests of all TRAITORS, then at least…HE MUST expose, expose and expose the foreign interference and traitors aiding and abetting the Chinese Communists.
Word tonight is that Pelosi’s laptop was grabbed and shows emails with ANTIFA organizers.
I am also seeing reports from credible sources, a U.S. military operation (during the night) was conducted in Ukraine, a raid of a Biden (owned) building and some very disturbing items and black tar heroin was seized.
The next couple of weeks could further entice the mental trip we’re all experiencing…WE ARE AT WAR.
Regardless of what Txxxx finally has to do, which WE might NOT agree with, the revolution and resistance against an illegal government will not end, but will become extremely dangerous, but righteous and our duty under the U.S. Constitution.
If you’re ready to escape perpetual fiefdom, extortion and slavery and build a powerhouse company or startup, sign up here < … > to find out how to create the biggest wealth creation movement ever
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Start differentiating between what is the reality v/s what they are imposing on you or live with the consequences.
Ziad K. Abdelnour, President & CEO
445 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10022
For context, Prof. Leiter offered a link to a Securities and Exchange Commission Order, which says in part:
This matter concerns a scheme by registered representative Abdelnour to offer and sell fictitious “prime bank” securities. From at least September 2009 to April 2011, Abdelnour, acting through Blackhawk Partners, Inc., a purported private equity “family office,” solicited investors to invest in trading programs that purportedly yielded returns of up to 600% in as little as seven days, with no risk. None of this was true, however. . . .
2. Although Abdelnour did not succeed in selling any of the fictitious securities, as a result of his fraud, Abdelnour willfully violated Sections 17(a)(1) and (3) of the Securities Act, and by engaging in unregistered broker-dealer activity, he violated Section 15(a) of the Exchange Act.