First amendment auditor “Press NH Now” came to Keene this week and stood outside Samson Manufacturing on Optical Avenue, simply recording video in public and had Keene police gang members called on him. Press is experienced at interacting with the cops and doesn’t answer their questions, putting them in their place. Watch the video here:
Representative Brodie Deshaies from Wolfeboro, New Hampshire testified in front of the State-Federal Relations and Veteran Affairs Committee on January 20, 2022 concerning CACR 32. The legislation seeks to let the people of New Hampshire vote to amend the Constitution and become an independent nation, breaking ties with DC. He was the legislator asked by the committee chairman to do the bulk of the research before the hearing.
Looking closely at all the claims Deshaies made about the legality of this bill and the implications concerning lawmakers voting to recommend that the House pass it, it is hard to decide if he is ignorant and easily swayed by empire-loving “constitutional scholars” from DC or if he gave a speech full of lies to sway the vote. He used fear-mongering language directed at the committee, implying that they may be charged by Washington DC if they vote ‘Ought To Pass’ and supported the bill through the legal process. This article is a close-up look at his claims and will look at all the material he references to see if he is really making a constitutional argument against CACR 32.
Deshaies starts off with an acknowledgment of how the public perceives him. “There are some people who are pretty upset with me in the room,” he says. This is already very indicative of his character. He sent Elliot “Alu” Axelman (the editor-in-chief of LibertyBlock.com and the author of multiple books on secession) an email full of misinterpretations of the US and New Hampshire Constitutions a few weeks ago. When Alxelman politely asked if he wished to engage in a public debate on the topic, Deshaies cowered and declined. Without the opportunity to debate Deshaies, and with no legislator agreeing to debate him, Alu published his rebuttal to Deshaies’ anti-independence letter on his website. The article destroys the few arguments that the anti-freedom legislator sought to make in his letter. Instead, Deshaies went on to publish the exact same letter in an op-ed article on NHJournal.com. So, now we know he knows how people feel about his twisting of the facts, but he just goes on to ignore the people and doubles down on his way of thinking. We see from this very first sentence that he isn’t the sort of person who feels he should be in office doing what the people of New Hampshire want. He feels he’s in office to rule over the citizens of New Hampshire with an iron fist.
He goes on to say that after speaking to many “constitutional scholars” such as David Williams, author of “The Mythic Meanings of the Second Amendment”, that he believes this committee was engaged in a “constitutional process” by voting Ought to Pass or Inexpedient to Legislate. Which means every vote cast is “aiding in the constitutional process,” and “approving it at each time along the way”.
Deshaies claims, “Every vote cast has a constitutional ramification judging by amendment fourteen of the US Constitution, section three. Some scholars would argue that this is rebelling, even if it’s peaceful. This very well could be an argument where voting for this, aiding and abetting in that process could very well be unconstitutional.”
So, there it is, folks. Deshaies spoke to a man who wrote a book arguing that the second amendment doesn’t really give all Americans the right to bear arms for advice on what the Constitution says. Then, he came up with a clever way to subtly scare the other members of the committee out of voting Ought to Pass on this bill. He used a mildly veiled threat of ‘insurrection’ and ‘rebellion’ to convince everyone on the committee to vote 21-0 against recommending the bill to be passed. Even the two committee members who told Axelman that they would support the legislation ultimately caved to the fear and voted to kill it. (more…)
A new bill was introduced to the NH House on January 5, 2022 that, if passed, could have serious, far-reaching consequences for 1st amendment auditors and anyone attempting to witness or film police interactions in New Hampshire.
Introduced by Rep. Al Baldasaro (R – Rockingham 5) and cosponsored by Rep. David Love, Rep. Vanessa Sheehan, Sen. Sharon Carson, Sen. Bob Giuda, and other Republicans, the bill attempts to add an 11th section to Chapter 642 of the Criminal Code; (642:11 Impeding or Provoking a Law Enforcement Officer.)
NH HB 1025 was presented to the New Hampshire House Committee on January 19, 2022. Committee members voted unanimously to recommend ITL (inexpedient to legislate) status for this bill. Nineteen of the 21 members were present, with a final vote in favor of ITL: “Yea” – 19 votes; “Nay” – 0 votes; with 2 not voting. You can view the vote in the video below (48:35 – 52:10.)
Nearly six months after his arrest in an insanely destructive 6am raid back in March, longtime Free Keene blogger Nobody has finally been granted bail. The judge in his case suggested that Nobody, who changed his name from Rich Paul to run for Mayor in 2019 then Governor in 2020, was being held illegally.
As was the case with my bail conditions, the federal “magistrate judge” denied Nobody’s bail initially and the defense had to appeal that “de novo” to the actual judge in the case, Joseph Normand Laplante. Laplante also happens to be the chief judge for the entire Federal District Church Court. Thus far Laplante has been much more reasonable than the magistrates, though the bail restrictions on the Crypto Six have varied wildly.
For instance, Aria DiMezzo is highly restricted on what websites she can visit and must ask permission from her probation officer to go to any sites that are outside her limited “whitelist”. However she has no restrictions on drug use. In contrast, I am able to go to any website except for sites for buying, selling, and trading cryptocurrency, am on home confinement, and am subject to random drug testing. I am allowed to use alcohol, though I prefer not to.
No co-defendants are allowed to speak with each other, though after filing motions with the court to remove the contact restriction between us, Aria and I were granted an exception by Laplante for the purposes of being able to perform and run our nationally syndicated radio show, “Free Talk Live“. I have a long list of people in addition to my co-defendants with whom I am prohibited from speaking. This includes my longtime co-host and co-minister in the Shire Free Church, Mark Edgington. As part of his bail, Nobody is also prohibited from speaking with the same list of people. Aria has no such restriction.At the de novo bail hearing, unlike the magistrate, Laplante didn’t seem concerned with Nobody’s statements on the recorded jail phone that seemed to be in favor of shooting police. He agreed with the defense that Nobody’s comments were just blowing off steam as Nobody was frustrated by the outrageous arrest and subsequent caging. Despite Laplante’s voiced opinion about Nobody’s lack of dangerousness, in a frustrating concession to the prosecution, he has restricted Nobody’s freedom of speech and prohibited him from making any public statements on media or at protest events. Here’s the relevant portion from page six of Nobody’s bail conditions:
It was stated during the bail hearing that the concern was not that Nobody himself would commit violence but that he might influence listeners or followers to do so. So now he has no freedom of speech. This despite an accused person supposedly being allowed to be “at liberty” prior to trial. Does the first amendment not apply to people on bail? Strangely, he had more free speech inside the cage at the Merrimack County Spiritual Retreat where he was held the last several months. Nobody could, and did, call in to Free Talk Live on more than one occasion – so long as Aria or I were not on the show. Now he is specifically prohibited from any audio or tv appearances. He had also, while in jail, begun a newsletter for his church. Will he even be able to continue it?
- Defendant shall refrain from the use of any social media platform to make any publicly viewable posts…
- Defendant shall refrain from public speaking engagements on radio, television, or podcasts, and shall also refrain from “taking the mic” at public rallies or public events.
Arguably, the restrictions as-written don’t prohibit his newsletter or perhaps even blogging. However I wouldn’t blame him if he chose not to rather than risk a post to Free Keene being considered “social media”, violating bail and getting locked back up. Hopefully his attorneys will be fighting to get his right to free speech respected again. On the positive side, he’s not restricted on travel and can leave his home without permission from his federal handler.
So much for freedom of speech. That said, I’m glad Nobody’s finally out.
The supposedly offensive promo has a limited amount of footage that could possibly be objectionable. Was it the scenes of two men being arrested? A photo of a massive 420 rally in Central Square in 2009? A man speaking into a megaphone? A photo of a band playing or people playing a card game in Railroad Square? A large group of people standing around the “Welcome to New Hampshire” sign at the Vermont border? The 4:20 pumpkin?
Two days prior to this strike, another decade-old :15 promo was allegedly found objectionable, this one featuring then-libertarian Penn Jillette saying he should move to Keene to join the Free Staters. I appealed the finding, and YouTube reversed it, once again allowing the video to be played. So, when the subsequent takedown happened this weekend, I also appealed it, asking in my appeal where the supposed “harmful or dangerous” content was. They upheld their decision to block the short promo video and give the account a “strike”. Of course, they declined to state exactly what it was in those scant fifteen seconds that was so offensive.The strike would have been a warning, but the account had recently received a warning in late February when YouTube removed a video promoting the new White Rose Society for violating their “medical misinformation” policy. So, that’s two videos taken down within a few weeks, hence the strike and now the account is not allowed to have uploads or live streams, among other things, for a week.
Luckily, we’ve been cultivating our exit plan from YouTube for years.
In 2018 Free Keene was among the first to join the “YouTube Partner Program” that automatically syncs our YouTube uploads to the decentralized blockchain-based media protocol, LBRY. We’ve promoted LBRY multiple times as they have successfully protected our videos that YouTube has deleted over the years.
Now, YouTube has increased its rate of finding things it doesn’t like about our videos. It may not be long before our entire channel is taken down. If you haven’t looked seriously at LBRY yet, now is the time to do it. In 2020, they launched Odysee, a video platform built on LBRY. I’ve created a handy url to take you right to the Free Keene channel on Odysee: video.freekeene.com. Unlike YouTube, LBRY/Odysee has no strikes and videos cannot be taken down. It’s true content freedom, and blockchain-powered. You can get the LBRY app or just follow our channel on Odysee.
From now on, this :30 migrate-to-LBRY promo will play at the end of every upload I am able to make to YouTube before they shut us down completely:
Along the way, whether as part of the libertarian migration to New Hampshire or later as part of a group of despicable NAZIs and other assorted white nationalist types, Cantwell has always been a polarizing figure and has caused schisms and drama withing whatever movement he put himself. This is one of the factors that leads people to believe that Cantwell himself is a federal agent. Having spent many hours with him over the years, I don’t believe he is a federal agent.
One thing’s for sure, Cantwell did do a lot of talking to federal agents in the last few years, and he allegedly even admitted to them having sent the messages he’s now been charged with sending via the Telegram chat app. The FBI raided his house last month on two felony charges, one of “Exortionate Interstate Communications” and one of “Threatening Interstate Communications”. Here’s the two-page indictment. In it, Cantwell is accused of sending the following message to someone over Telegram: “So if you don’t want me to come and fuck your wife in front of your kids, then you should make yourself scarce Give me Vic, it’s your only out.”
The feds are arguing that this is a rape threat. Beyond the fact that Cantwell didn’t say he would rape the woman, a little background and context is important to know. According to testimony at the detention hearing in federal court in Concord NH, the as-yet unrevealed “victim” in this case never complained to the feds about the message, but he did post it publicly online where a federal agent on the West Coast spotted it. The supposed victim is allegedly a member of an internet hate group called “Bowl Patrol”. The group is named as such because they worship the sicko church shooter Dylan Roof and he apparently had a bowl haircut. A Manchester police officer who works closely with the FBI testified that the “Bowl Patrol” was targeting Cantwell’s podcast phone lines with awful calls and allegedly hacked Cantwell’s website. That led Cantwell to attempt to discover their identities and to the chat where he threatened to have sex with the man’s wife if he didn’t give up the identity of the “Bowl Patrol” leader, “Vic”.Cantwell’s racist views are despicable, but the “Bowl Patrol” people may be worse, if that’s possible. Either way, it’s just white hate group members fighting with each other. If they are busy infighting, they can’t be out doing publicly awful things. Rather than just let the white supremacists have their internet spats, the FBI used the fact that Cantwell trash-talked someone on the internet – free speech – to charge him with felonies for which he faces up to 25 years in prison.
That’s twenty-five years for the level of trash-talking that goes on all across the internet, every day. Cantwell’s persecution here is an attack against freedom of speech and also served as an excuse to take his computers, flash drives, guns, and drugs. There’s no doubt that he has a ton of bad karma out there waiting for him for the things he’s said and done, but that doesn’t mean he belongs in prison. Yes, he’s a rude guy with a big mouth and terrible, disgusting ideas, and that’s why he’s a perfect target for a government attack on freedom of speech.
In Pastor Martin Niemoller’s famous poem from 1946, Niemoller wrote:
First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out— because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
In 2020, first they came for the “Crying NAZI”. I don’t agree with what he says, but I will defend his right to say it. Cantwell is a target because not only does he have views that good people will detest, he’s also detested by people who hold similar views to his. Not one single supporter was at his bail hearing. He may still have a small fan club on the internet, but according to the federal government, he doesn’t have much money in the bank.
However, Cantwell does know about cryptocurrency and internet privacy tools like Signal and Telegram. The agent who testified, Brett Fernald, explained that Cantwell used bitcoin and that bitcoin could be used to hide money and was anonymous. Though that’s not true – bitcoin is completely trackable. It’s Monero that’s a privacy coin. Anyway, according to the robed woman called a “magistrate judge”, Andrea K Johnstone, in a nine-page detention order, Cantwell’s computer knowledge is one reason he can’t be allowed out of a cage even with severe restrictions like gps tracking and even being disallowed from the internet, to which the defense was readily willing to agree.
The feds also argued at the hearing that Cantwell can’t be relied on to make it to court and cited the fact that he was drunk while on bail in Virginia, despite the fact that he never missed a single court appearance. When Cantwell was informed he was wanted on a warrant for his actions in Charlottesville in 2017 he took a week to turn himself in. Cantwell’s public defender pointed out that he wanted to acquire an attorney before turning himself in, which he did do. However because Cantwell didn’t IMMEDIATELY turn himself in, the prosecutors submitted that was a reason he wouldn’t show up to court.Though Cantwell says he was acting in self-defense in the Charlottesville fights, he took a plea deal on assault and battery charges and that was brought up as evidence of why he’s a supposed danger to the community. That’s despite the fact that Chris has since kept to himself and his apartment in Keene since 2017 and that prior to that he was not known for any violent acts.
Further, they made him out to be meth-crazed lunatic. He may be a lunatic in his beliefs, and who knows what role his meth use several years ago had in forming his current racist mindset, but he’s been off the meth for a long time. A drug screening when he was arrested in January only showed cannabis use, according to the evidence in the case.
During the hearing, Johnstone, overruled every one of the defense’s objections and in her detention order agreed with the prosecution’s ridiculous assertions that Cantwell is somehow a danger to the community. In the order, She cited also his legal possession of over a dozen various guns, including one found inside an unlocked case magnetically attached underneath his car. Johnstone even parrots the prosecution’s point that somehow this was a danger to the school across the street from his apartment.
The guns, alleged threats, drugs, bail violation, plea deals to violent crimes, were all cited by Johnstone as factors, but most critically it seemed that it was Cantwell’s knowledge about internet secrecy techniques that is really keeping him behind bars. Johnstone wrote, citing another case on the matter, US v Savader:
given the defendant’s demonstrated facility with computer technology, it would be all but impossible to fashion terms and conditions that would eliminate defendant’s access to… certain electronic files that could be used to threaten victims
Now the case moves to trial, ostensibly set for April. The federal government has already spent likely tens of thousands of dollars on the court hearings alone, not to mention who knows how much more money on investigating Cantwell over years. After all that money and effort, some internet trash-talk between despicable people is all they have to go after him on. If Cantwell is convicted here, he’ll be a proverbial canary in the coal mine. The federal government would like to get a conviction here so there’s a precedent set for prosecuting people who say ugly things. Who will be targeted next? Maybe some trash-talking teens on an Xbox or Playstation online video game?
If you’d like an in-depth discussion of my experience attending the detention hearings, please listen to this episode of Free Talk Live. This link will start you where the topic comes up. Stay tuned here to Free Keene for the latest on Chris Cantwell, political prisoner. #FreeCantwell