Coppers rate sovereign citizen sect of right-wing nutballs more dangerous than ISIS

For decades, in courthouses and government offices all across the US, people have been filing bizarrely worded pseudo-legal documents filled with strange symbols, secret coded language, and even bloody fingerprints in an effort to unlock secret bank accounts set up for them by the evil impostor government that runs this country.

These people call themselves “sovereign citizens,” and the complex symbolism they use in these documents offers a fascinating insight into the beliefs and practices of a fringe movement whose prominence in America has grown over the past few decades and whose ideology overlaps with that of many other, often more dangerous, far-right extremist movements in the US, including groups like the militia that recently took over a national wildlife refuge in Oregon.

The sovereign citizens movement is a far-right anti-government extremist movement in the US that believes the government — at all levels, local, state, and federal — is illegitimate and has enslaved the American people.

Their belief system is complex and rooted in a series of bizarre conspiracy theories that hold that the original US government set up by the Founding Fathers has been replaced with an evil secret government that has sold all US citizens into slavery by using them as collateral against foreign debt.

As explained by the Southern Poverty Law Center, they believe the government creates a secret alternate identity for each American at birth and sets up a secret US Treasury account — sort of like a corporate “trust” — under that alternate identity. The US government funds these “corporate shell” accounts to the tune of hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars…

Part of their proof is that birth certificates and other government documents, said to represent this scheme, put names in all capital letters. So whereas Jennifer Williams is the real person, JENNIFER WILLIAMS is the secret Treasury account…

According to the FBI, which considers this a domestic terrorist movement, “By declaring themselves ‘sovereign citizens,’ they believe that they are emancipated from the responsibilities of being a U.S. citizen, including paying taxes, possessing a state driver’s license, or obeying the law…”

These beliefs may be nutty, but the groups are quite serious. A 2014 survey asked US law enforcement officials to rank terrorist threats to the United States. They ranked sovereign citizens as the highest threat — with Islamic extremists coming in second.

I’m not wasting time or space detailing the crap dementia of these fools. RTFA if you want a cold, shuddery chuckle. Just understand, this level of paranoia is at the root of a number of run-ups to violence – with phony patriotic names – in this land.

3 thoughts on “Coppers rate sovereign citizen sect of right-wing nutballs more dangerous than ISIS

  1. Cassandra says:

    Editorial: “Land grab movement could decay into violence” (Salt Lake City Tribune Jan 22) “…It could be amusing to watch the Mensheviks and Bolsheviks of the land-grab movement fall into internal warfare, ending their effectiveness and allowing the rest of us to go unmolested about our business. Except that the potential for violence as a by-product of that fission is very real.
    The true leaders among us will do all they can to walk everyone back from that powder keg.
    If it isn’t already too late.”

    • Ka-Ching! says:

      “$3.3 million and counting: The cost of the Malheur occupation” …The amount doesn’t include any figures from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, which operates the 187,700-acre bird sanctuary seized Jan. 2 by armed militants. U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., introduced legislation earlier this month that would require the U.S. Department of Justice to reimburse state and local agencies for their occupation-related costs up front. The bill would allow the U.S. attorney general to seek reimbursement through civil action against the militants.
      The Burns Paiute Tribe, meanwhile, spent about $60,000 on additional law enforcement and $90,000 related to taking an inventory of artifacts at the refuge and keeping tabs on the occupation, tribal chair Charlotte Roderique estimated. The tribe’s operations are funded in part by the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the tribe expects to incur more costs, given reports that militants might have disturbed precious burial sites and tribal artifacts, she said.

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