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The Overfederalization of Crime in America
American Legislator ^ | 4-4-14 | Cara Sullivan

Posted on 04/04/2014 1:01:43 PM PDT by ThethoughtsofGreg

In March 2013, Anthony Brasfield released a dozen heart-shaped balloons in the air as a romantic gesture for his girlfriend. After a Florida Highway Patrol officer spotted the gesture, Brasfield was charged with polluting to harm humans, animals and plants—a third degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

While some criminal laws and sanctions are necessary to protect safety and ensure justice, America’s criminal code includes many activities that Americans and business owners have little way of knowing are crimes. As a result, law-abiding individuals and businesses spend innumerable hours and dollars fending off criminal prosecution for actions they never suspected were illegal. There are more than 4,450 federal crimes and 300,000 regulations with criminal sanctions, many of which are duplicative of state criminal statutes and only serve to add confusion.1 Policymakers at the federal and state levels must en- sure there is a legitimate and real need to incarcerate each offender. Further, federal policymakers should carefully consider whether the issue is better handled by the states.

(Excerpt) Read more at americanlegislator.org ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy
KEYWORDS: budgets; crimes; criminaljustice; federalism; tyranny

1 posted on 04/04/2014 1:01:43 PM PDT by ThethoughtsofGreg
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

Three felonies a day.
That is what you and I are probably committing, without ever having a clue, thanks to vague, sweeping and overlapping legislation.


2 posted on 04/04/2014 1:04:17 PM PDT by Little Ray (How did I end up in this hand-basket, and why is it getting so hot?)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

When I was active duty Marine we were told we violated 35 articles of the Uniform Code of Military Justice by waking up and getting out of the rack in the morning.


3 posted on 04/04/2014 1:06:32 PM PDT by Tonytitan
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

They write laws this way on purpose. That way, if someone “in power” decides you are a nuisance you can be arrested on some ridiculous thing or another.


4 posted on 04/04/2014 1:08:14 PM PDT by Personal Responsibility (I'd use the /S tag but is it really necessary?)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg
“Did you really think we want those laws observed?" said Dr. Ferris. "We want them to be broken. You'd better get it straight that it's not a bunch of boy scouts you're up against... We're after power and we mean it... There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Who wants a nation of law-abiding citizens? What's there in that for anyone? But just pass the kind of laws that can neither be observed nor enforced or objectively interpreted – and you create a nation of law-breakers – and then you cash in on guilt. Now that's the system, Mr. Reardon, that's the game, and once you understand it, you'll be much easier to deal with.” ― Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged (1957)
5 posted on 04/04/2014 1:08:56 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum ("A man who damns money obtained it dishonorably; a man who respects it has earned it." --Ayn Rand)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg
There is a line from a 1930 or 40's gangster movie. I believe it was somewhat popular in the culture during that era as well. It is said sarcastically:

"Don't make a federal case out of it!"

Unfortunately, progressives think everything should be a federal crime.

6 posted on 04/04/2014 1:09:44 PM PDT by Perseverando (Obamanation: It's ALL about PEOPLE CONTROL!)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

Well, there are only so many crimes listed in the constitution for which the fedguv is responsible. They are few and far between.


7 posted on 04/04/2014 1:12:30 PM PDT by andyk (I have sworn...eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.)
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To: Little Ray
Three felonies a day.
That is what you and I are probably committing,

Speak for yourself...I'm good for at least eight... ;-)

8 posted on 04/04/2014 1:18:12 PM PDT by apillar
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To: Little Ray
Three felonies a day.

Slacker.

(-;

9 posted on 04/04/2014 1:18:30 PM PDT by MeganC (Support Matt Bevin to oust Mitch McConnell! https://mattbevin.com/)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

There should be very, very few federal crimes, but this expansion is a direct result of the abuse found in Wickard and the other cases expanding the Commerce Clause and General Welfare.


10 posted on 04/04/2014 1:20:50 PM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: Personal Responsibility

Spot on. Poorly written laws are destructive as is administrative law. Ad law needs to be ended as well.


11 posted on 04/04/2014 1:21:44 PM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: All

It is becoming more obvious every day that DC must be torn down, either peacefully or some other alternative. It used to be well understood that there was _no_ Federal police power. Obvious, DC doesn’t care about that or just about limitations in USConstitution.


12 posted on 04/04/2014 1:24:40 PM PDT by veracious
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg
I'm re-watching the TV series Numb3rs on Netflix and it amazes me how many hoops they jump through to get the main character's FBI agent involved in obviously local/state crime investigations.

Who knows, I probably just committed a felony by making a statement concerning the feds butting into local/state jurisdictions (and probably because I'm white, Holder will sic his goons on me. IRS audit, here I come!).

13 posted on 04/04/2014 1:24:46 PM PDT by jeffc (The U.S. media are our enemy)
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To: Perseverando

We’re not supposed to have a national government and that’s what statists and many big businesses want. Big business is a major enemy to liberty in that they want numerous agencies to 1. keep out competitors and 2. allow them to capture the regulatory regime.

Our system is federalism. We have a federal government. Mexico, Italy and most other third world countries have national governments. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unitary_state

America and American government are absolutely unique in world history. We are the exception. The rule is socialism, tribalism and national central control.

American exceptionalism is real.


14 posted on 04/04/2014 1:27:20 PM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: Perseverando

That was one of my mother’s favorite sayings. It meant “Dont make a mountain out if a molehill.”


15 posted on 04/04/2014 1:29:45 PM PDT by crazycatlady
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

So LEO resources are used to put people in jail who release balloons into the air. If it’s really a bad thing, then a fine is due, but not jail time.

By creating thousands of “crimes” that most people are “committing” without being aware, they in effect terrorize the public and make them servile sheep.

Meanwhile they don’t prosecute feral street criminals who attack innocent law-abiding individuals.


16 posted on 04/04/2014 1:30:01 PM PDT by I want the USA back (Media: completely irresponsible traitors. Complicit in the destruction of our country.)
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To: 1010RD
There should be very, very few federal crimes, but this expansion is a direct result of the abuse found in Wickard and the other cases expanding the Commerce Clause and General Welfare.

What's sad/funny is that when you point this out in the very-real practical example of the War on Drugs and take a stance against it, you are often labeled as a druggie or endorsing drug-use — what they fail to realize is that if constitutional-restrictions only apply when you want them to, then the Constitution is useless and this means that it's more important to support the restrictions of the Constitution when they hinder your ideals than when they do not. (You wish to advance your ideals, and you don't wish to advance non-ideals… therefore you will be inclined to let things slide when the violations line up with your ideals.)

17 posted on 04/04/2014 1:33:35 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: I want the USA back
By creating thousands of “crimes” that most people are “committing” without being aware, they in effect terrorize the public and make them servile sheep.

From the TN Constitution:

Article 1, Section 2.
That government being instituted for the common benefit, the doctrine of nonresistance against arbitrary power and oppression is absurd, slavish, and destructive of the good and happiness of mankind.

18 posted on 04/04/2014 1:36:31 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: 1010RD

Here in Michigan we have two major electric companies in what they call a “competitive partnership” and they have a state mandated cap on outside competition set at 10% of the market share.

My state rep is pushing to raise the cap to 25% and you would think he’s personally trying to kill everyone who works for those two companies. Millions are being spent on ads to oppose this evil attempt at “deregulation”.


19 posted on 04/04/2014 1:36:34 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: OneWingedShark
The New Deal "substantial effects" doctrine of the Commerce Clause has become the federal governments "catch all" claim of authority. Using it to authorize the drug war was the easy way out.

The unintended consequences stand as proof that what's easy is seldom what's best.

20 posted on 04/04/2014 1:38:08 PM PDT by tacticalogic
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To: null and void

Ping.


21 posted on 04/04/2014 1:39:26 PM PDT by Black Agnes
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To: cripplecreek

I hope he wins. I often admire Michigan for the right moves it is making now. I’m trapped in Illinois. Nobody fights for the little guy there.

It’s one of the reasons that liberalism is such a lie. In the free market system the consumer is king. In socialism the consumer is the victim.

Liberals have so poisoned the word deregulation by 1. doing it wrong and 2. propagandizing their own failures, that the average person hates deregulation.

Here in Illinois people blame their rising energy costs on... deregulation of the industry. Crazy.


22 posted on 04/04/2014 1:40:00 PM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

Then there is the over-criminalization of civil offenses....


23 posted on 04/04/2014 1:58:02 PM PDT by Paladin2
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To: Little Ray
Three felonies a day. That is what you and I are probably committing, without ever having a clue, thanks to vague, sweeping and overlapping legislation.

Ayn Rand, please pick up on the red phone.

FMCDH(BITS)

24 posted on 04/04/2014 2:53:38 PM PDT by nothingnew (I fear for my Republic due to marxist influence in our government. Open eyes/see)
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To: ThethoughtsofGreg

After a Florida Highway Patrol officer spotted the gesture, Brasfield was charged with polluting to harm humans, animals and plants—a third degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison.


A REAL cop wouldn’t even know that the hell that law is. A REAL cop would be on the highway, profiling for drug runners, not busting this guys balls.


25 posted on 04/04/2014 2:55:43 PM PDT by qaz123
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To: E. Pluribus Unum
GMTA

See post #24

FMCDH(BITS)

26 posted on 04/04/2014 2:57:02 PM PDT by nothingnew (I fear for my Republic due to marxist influence in our government. Open eyes/see)
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To: MeganC

Three felonies??

Don’t know how many FR replies I’ve posted today so far.


27 posted on 04/04/2014 5:03:13 PM PDT by Scrambler Bob (You can count my felonies by looking at my FR replies.)
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To: 1010RD

From the authors perspective, these laws aren’t poorly written. They are written in such a way that they can be used against anyone when needed. Those vagaries are not an accidental, poor writing technique. They are 100% intentional.

It’s exactly why we favor a local government that is smaller and more directly accountable to its constituents. It’s much harder to slip this kind of deviousness through on a local level. It’s also exactly why the leftists want a big federal government. They can -and do- use this writing technique to further their goals (expanding the State, shrinking your personal liberty etc...)


28 posted on 04/04/2014 11:14:07 PM PDT by Personal Responsibility (I'd use the /S tag but is it really necessary?)
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To: Personal Responsibility
They write laws this way on purpose. That way, if someone “in power” decides you are a nuisance you can be arrested on some ridiculous thing or another.

Yes - this is in part why our political caste are such squishes. They know they are one careless remark away from getting the Tom DeLay treatment.

29 posted on 04/05/2014 9:46:33 AM PDT by Mr. Jeeves ([CTRL-GALT-DELETE])
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To: apillar

I am not in management. Limits my opportunities a bit.


30 posted on 04/07/2014 6:58:05 AM PDT by Little Ray (How did I end up in this hand-basket, and why is it getting so hot?)
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