There are thousands of podcasts out on any topic you can imagine. There are plenty of good programs dealing with foreign policy and civil liberties as well. RPI staff often appears on these and we enthusiastically applaud their work. So why on earth would we launch our own audio program when the market seems so well covered? We want to do something different. That is why the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity is launching today a new audio show: Five Minutes Five Issues.
What does that mean? It means we will deliver to our listeners a tiny capsule of concentrated news and analysis on the issues we need to keep on our radar screens. We all know how the mainstream media filters the news. We will try to deconstruct the spin and pull out the facts. And we will do it faster than lightning! Who doesn’t have five minutes to get up to speed on tomorrow’s headlines? We hope you enjoy the new program. We will be making adjustments as we go and as usual we are happy to have your feedback and suggestions.
The five topics addressed in the first five-minute episode are a New York federal court decision regarding iPhone security and encryption, the indictment of people involved in the 2014 Bundy Ranch protests, the US government keeping Saudi Arabia’s secrets, Donald Trump’s statements regarding torture, and marijuana seizures on the US/Mexico border.
Listen to the show here:
Read a transcript of the show, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:
The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.
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Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.
On February 29, a New York federal magistrate judge rejected the United States government’s request for a court order to force Apple to help defeat security on an iPhone. You might think this is a big win for individual rights. But, the decision’s reasoning is centered on interpreting the All Writs Act and weighing factors considered in cases under that statute. The decision does not consider constitutional issues such as privacy, free speech, search and seizure, or whether requiring a company to create a means to bypass an electronic device’s security violates the Thirteenth Amendment prohibition on slavery.
In the decision’s concluding paragraphs, Magistrate Judge James Orenstein even to legislators to decide how “best to balance” “societal interests” including “reasonable expectations of privacy” against what he calls “the government’s legitimate interest in ensuring that no door is too strong to resist lawful entry.” In other words, Congress, please sort this out as you wish.
In April of 2014, I wrote about then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) ominous comments about protestors who had seemingly won a victory against the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) at the Bundy Ranch in Reid’s state of Nevada. Reid said in an interview that the confrontation was “not over.” A few days later he declared the protesters were “domestic terrorists.”
The government is now responding to being defeated on the range. The Associated Press on Friday reported a total of 19 people — including rancher Cliven Bundy — have been indicted so far for alleged actions related to the 2014 confrontation.
What’s with so much information about Saudi Arabia being hidden from view? In the US House of Representatives, Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) (who is on the Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board), Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA), and others have been working to make public 28 pages of a joint House and Senate report on the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in America. The report was completed in 2002. Today, 28 pages remain redacted, apparently because of content regarding Saudi Arabia.
Saudi redactions, though, go back further. They even reach former President Ronald Reagan’s diaries. On Monday, National Public Radio aired Steve Inskeep’s interview with Douglas Brinkley, who edited a book of Reagan’s diaries. Brinkley said that Reagan’s wife Nancy gave Brinkley the former president’s “entire diaries” and wanted them all available to the public. But, Brinkley discloses, “a few passages got classified due to information about Saudi Arabia and the Middle East.”
Last week, Donald Trump said, in a Republican presidential debate, “We should go for waterboarding, and we should go tougher than waterboarding.” The next day, Trump implied he had changed his mind, when he stated he would not order the military to break laws and treaties. Then, on Saturday, Trump, said at a campaign rally that he wants to “broaden” the existing laws.
What will Trump say should he become president? Here’s a possibility: Trump will say he found some old memos from former President George W. Bush’s Office of Legal Counsel. Those memos say waterboarding, et cetera, is not torture; it is just enhanced interrogation and totally legal.
Paul Armentano at the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) shared some good news on Friday. New US Border Patrol data shows marijuana seizures in 2015 on the US/Mexico border are “the lowest amount reported in a decade.” Armentano suggests the seizures decline is due to an increase in American-grown marijuana, particularly in states where anti-marijuana laws have been repealed.
Unfortunately, Armentano notes, the Border Patrol estimates it still seized 1.5 million pounds of marijuana on the border. May the day soon come when the Border Patrol stops depriving people of their marijuana and stops arresting people for meeting demand for the plant.
That’s a wrap.
A transcript of this episode, including links to related information, is at the Ron Paul Institute blog.
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Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.