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Picture of the Day

December 31, 2011

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 In 2007, the Seattle Police Department in conjunction with the FBI launched a "domestic terrorism" investigation
of local artist and curator DK Pan and his associates who hosted unlicensed after-hours parties which were open
secrets in a city where last call is 1:30 am. Despite an undercover agent's attempts to provoke hostile actions,
ultimately the only charges filed were for gambling, liquor violations, and some petty drug deals. Illegal? Yes.
Worthy of a multimillion dollar sting operation? Not so much. Most of the indicted copped plea deals but DK
chose to stick it out to trial to bring attention to the authorities' overreach. The court date was set for January
but then on December 2 all charges were dropped, leaving Pan with $50,000 in legal defense bills. Tonight's
New Year's Eve party was a fundraiser to help dig him out of that hole. Well, I mention all this because as of
today, with President Obama's signing of the NDAA 2012, failed sting operations bordering on entrapment
can now be a thing of the past--but not for any good reason. As of today, the mere whiff of suspicion will be
enough for the military to indefinitely detain U.S. citizens on American soil without charge, counsel, or trial
if they fit someone's definition of terrorist--a term so broad it can be applied to almost anyone. So Pan was
quite lucky, really, because now being suspected of terrorism by someone with an ax to grind is enough to
have you disappeared to Guantanamo or some CIA rendition site for torture. The Senate rendered the 6th
moot on the 220th anniversary of the Bill of Rights with an 86-13 vote. The House didn't do
much better. See how your electeds voted and demand an explanation from the Yeas. And thank the Nays.