From braintree!!!!alerma Thu Oct 5 10:54:38

Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

From braintree!!!!alerma Thu Oct 5 10:54:38 1995 Path: braintree!!!!alerma From: (alerma) Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject: The Liberty Tree - PLEASE REPOST Date: 4 Oct 1995 18:00:06 GMT Organization: Digital Gateway Systems Lines: 350 Message-ID: <44ui36$> NNTP-Posting-Host: Keywords: liberty,John Wilkes,internet X-Newsreader: TIN [version 1.2 PL2] Dear Netizens, 4 Oct 1995 During the occassional moments, when I feel the struggle may be too much to bear, I read this 'screed' again...It helps me keep the big picture in mind, that my purpose is to eradicate those who profit from the tryanny of man. Please feel free to place this upon web pages, and reprint as needed and please (italic) support the FACTNet defense fund, at I hereby place this in the public domain... Now available there is the full transcript from the Oct 8 hearing in colorado in Judge Kane's courtroom, RTC vs FACTNet. Liberty & Property! Arnaldo Lerma A director for FACTNet "I'd prefer to die speaking my mind than live fearing to speak" (note this is an ever so slightly edited and updated version of the previous postings of this document dedicated to the power of the human spirit...) (This repost is dedicated to Bob Minton, 10K match contributer to the FACTNet defense fund) The Internet is the Liberty Tree of the 90's If we do not define the Internet, it will be defined for us... "Cyberspace", "Internet", "newsgroups", "hackers", .... Welcome to the internet, a new technology growing at times at 20% per month in size. Much is being written describing the perils and adventures awaiting mankind in the years to come, and more importantly, what controls, if any, should be imposed, and by whom they should be administered. What follows is my view, after just celebrating my first year upon the "Internet", with a 9:30 AM raid upon my home, as US Marshals stood by, when employee's and officers of the cult of $cientology pawed through my personal belongings, seized my computer, modem, scanner, spare computer parts, keyboard, monitor, mouse & more than 400 diskettes & backup tapes, on Saturday August 12th at 9:30 AM, by means of a civil writ for search and seizure. What follows is some little known history in which to frame, these recent events... Before the American revolution for independence....There were small communities, hamlets, villages - there was a sense of community. a quality in short supply in today.. Near the center of town, oft-times at 'the fork in the road' was a large tree, typically an Elm which served as the community's bulletin board, public notice board, newspaper, and legal notice section of the contemporary urban newspaper. If there was to be a barn-raising, a citizen would post a written notice upon the tree. When an official decree or warrant, was wished to be known by all, a copy would be posted upon that tree. When a citizen had a complaint or petition, or perhaps, just news from a letter from England, that he wished to share with his neighbors, that information was posted to the tree. This was the first information system of the colonies. The Perot Movement As an activist in the early Perot Petition drive, and as editor and publisher of "The Arlington Volunteer's Newsletter", which for a few issued was the 'official' 'Perot' Newsletter for Virginia, I noted the spontaneous awakening amongst citizenry to take action to make government accountable to 'the people'. Wondering what the future would hold, I looked to the past to find a similar time of 'awakening'. I turned to the Public Library system, and researched, here in Arlington Virginia as well as in Savannah, Georgia, various accounts of pre- Revolutionary America in search of parallels to what I was witnessing in the present, in order to learn what might occur next and how to preserve and nourish this awakening of citizenry to the true responsibility of government to represent the body of the people, as opposed to interests with money, influence and power. I hoped to keep this awakening in motion despite the mismanagement and heavy handed tactics of Mr. Perot's organization. I discover 'The Sons of Liberty' & 'John Wilkes' In descriptions of the years prior to the American Revolution, I found references to secretive groups called "Sons of Liberty", which spontaneously, and independently organized throughout the colonies, in response to abuses to liberty by agents of the Crown.. I did extensive keyword searches for 'Sons of Liberty', and what follows are my findings and conclusions on how it relates to the Internet today. The 'Sons of Liberty' were a secret society, with many members of influence, who wished not to be known, one of the famous kown members was, Paul Revere, in Boston. The Boston Sons of Liberty used to meet in the 'Long Room' above a tavern called 'The Dragon', which had a copperplate of a dragon on its sign out front, that had turned, as copper does, green with age and corrosion, and became known to its patrons as "the Green Dragon". It was in this long room, above the Green Dragon, that the various protests and demonstrations in Boston were planned, including the throwing of some tea in Boston Harbor. John Hancock, shipper, and rum smuggler, was the financier, an who at the direction of Boston's tax collector, Samuel Adams, financed the protests and activities of the early Patriots. Samuel Adams was also an organized for the Sons of Liiberty. John Wilkes first 'Populist', father of the Sons of Liberty The 'hero' of the Sons of Liberty, was a Member of the British minority party at the time, one John Wilkes, son of distiller, who published a political rag called 'The Penny Advertiser'. His newsletter was a barb in the side of the king and his man in Parliament, Lord Bute. In the 45th issue of this newsletter, John Wilkes, said that "A man is a sovereign unto himself, and (thus) may only be ruled by his own consent" John Wilkes was most popular, with the people, and was elected Lord Mayor of London at one point. He was the champion of the Colonies in England, and could be considered the first 'populist'. The phrase "sons of Liberty' was first used by a member of the minority party in defense of some onerous action by the majority party, who had fought side by side with the colonists in the French & Indian War, and knew the tenacity and determination of the colonists, and said something similar to " Do not underestimate these 'sons of liberty' in America.." The phrase, no doubt, caught the fancy of those Americans most concerned with Liberty. Reading these populist writings, by John Wilkes, in his home north of London, in the early 1760's, that said that elected officials should truly represent the interests of 'the body of the people', was a man named Thomas Pain. When Thomas Pain came to America, and began his writings, he signed his name with a flourish that was misunderstood by the Americans to be an 'e', and tiring of correcting people, he began for the sake of brevity, to call himself Thomas 'Paine'. A hundred years later, the man who shot President Lincoln, reportedly, jumped from the balcony onto the stage, and yelled his name (a moniker) "John Wilkes Bute", a reporter got it wrong, and now history calls him Booth... he was saying 'Bute'. This was fascinating, as well as puzzling, that so little of this story of the roots of liberty are taught in the American School systems...I consider this 'lost knowledge'. Knowledge I now consider essential for maintenance of that Liberty that our forefathers sought in coming to this 'New World'. The Sons of Liberty begin to dedicate Trees of Liberty It was these trees, used by citizenry, for communication, that became the subject of near-reverence, and dedication in the name of Liberty. Silas Downer, member of the Sons of Liberty of Rhode Island, said the following, at a dedication of a Tree of Liberty, in 1766. It is this dedication ceremony, which brought me the full understanding of what 'Liberty' truly is. Note well the line containing the phrase 'under trees and in the wilderness', it was this line that made me realize, what 'America' and 'Liberty' were really about. At a dedication of a Tree of Liberty in 1766...Silas Downer said: "We do therefore, in the name and behalf of all the true SONS of LIBERTY in America, Great Britain, Corsica, Ireland or wheresoever they are dispersed throughout the world, dedicate and solemnly devote this tree to be a TREE of LIBERTY.---- May all our councils and deliberations under its venerable branches be guided by wisdome, and directed to the support and maintenance of that liberty, which our forefathers sought out and found under trees, and in the wilderness. ---May it long flourish, and may the SONS of LIBERTY often repair hither, to confirm and strengthen each other. --When they look towards the sacred ELM, may they be penetrated with a sense of duty to themselves, their country, and their posterity:--And may they, like the house of David, grow stronger and stronger, while their enemies, like the house of Saul, grow weaker and weaker. AMEN The Stamp Tax The stamp tax was a cleverly designed tax, that required that a 'stamp' be purchased, and affixed to all documents, newspapers, bills of laden, court decrees, and posters etc. It was a nominal tax, but one of its intents, was to end 'anonymous' postings upon these trees at the center of communities, to suppress criticism of the government. To stifle free speech... This tax was never allowed to be implemented, as it was the uproar that ensured throughout the colonies, that created The Sons of Liberty, as coopers, smithies, cabinet makers, men who worked with their hands, joined together, in small groups, independently, to oppose tyrannical rule by a despotic government. Local, community, posting trees, were dedicated by citizenry, with much pomp, fanfare and ceremony, as TREES of LIBERTY, and festooned with imagery, - A boot, with a devil effigy climbing out, was the symbol for Lord Bute, - the King's agent in the House of Commons, who led the effort to tax and discipline the 'Colonies' in opposition to populist, John Wilkes, the champion of the Americans' cause. The number 45, in celebration of the 45th issue of John Wilkes Penny Advertiser. The phrase "Liberty & Property", used by John Wilkes, and chanted by crowds in support of Mr. Wilkes, protesting his imprisonment in England for his outspoken statements about the inalienable rights of man. A tarred and feathered effigy of the local 'Stamp Tax collector' And "Long Live John Wilkes" as well as other less properly quotable remarks... Along with various exhortations to rally citizenry against whatever incendiary actions the Crown was pursuing at the time. Which brings us back to today, on the internet. And who shall rule it. I consider the worldwide Internet, to be merely a way for citizenry from far flung physical locations, to form, 'virtual Communities', around 'Trees' called mailing lists and newsgroups, and Web pages. If a citizen does not like a particular community of ideas, he may effortlessly and instantly move, at the touch of a keyboard. If a citizen, considers a particular poster's ideas offensive, he may choose to not read them, automatically.... If a citizen desires to discuss any particular subject, - if enough interest exists to justify a new newsgroup, he may create one in which to discuss it. However, when any individual or group, tears these posters from this virtual tree of liberty, or seeks to censor, harass or prosecute those who post upon this tree, this is, in my opinion an affront, to the Freedom, Liberty and the constitutional guarantees our Founding Fathers felt important enough to attempt to chisel in stone by including them in the Constitution of the United States of America. Including but not limited to: Free Assembly, (upon a newsgroup or mailing list of choice), Free Speech, separation of Church and State, and Free association. and the rights against unreasonable search and seizure It is also my opinion,, that as the final authority for government and the law devolves from the body of the people, then is follows that public interest should be considered senior to any fine points law. Actions such as above, should be considered the gravest threat to Liberty, and it was these same threats, two hundred and thirty some years ago, that the American Revolution was the solution to... "The Internet is the Liberty Tree of the 90's." Arnaldo Lerma Paraphrased for our times: A dedication of the internet as a Tree of Liberty "We do therefore, in the name and behalf of all true SONS of LIBERTY throughout the world, wherever they are dispersed, dedicate and solemnly devote the INTERNET to be a TREE of LIBERTY. May all our councils and deliberations on its many nodes be guided by wisdome, and directed to the support and maintenance of that liberty, which our forefathers sought out and found under trees and in the wilderness. May it long flourish, and may the SONS of LIBERTY often go hither, to confirm and strengthen each other -- When they look toward the sacred INTERNET , may they be penetrated with a sense of duty to themselves, their country, and their posterity" Arnaldo Lerma 1995 & Silas Downer 1766 "we shall either define the internet or it shall be defined for us" Postscript - 6 Sept 1995 When dealing with internet issues, keep in mind, you are dealing with groups of citzenery, gathering, " under trees and in the wilderness " (the wilderness that is the internet at this time), to discuss topics of mutual interest. You are dealing with communities, small city-states, of like minded citizens. Anyone who does not approve of some of these groups must be reminded why our forefathers chose to come to this land. We must not cut down these trees. They should be considerdered as sanctuaries for sacred testimony of freedom. Those that disapprove of a particular tree must not be allowed to cut it down. The end of the forest of liberty begins with the first tree felled. This is the internet, the liberty tree of the 90ís. Arnaldo Lerma 1995


E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank