Nothing to see here, barely worth mentioning really. Just the United States House of Representatives voting 417 to 8 to seize the private property of "foreign persons" because they support a Russian leader who is making them all look bad.
We seem to have passed the time when bills were artfully drafted, the better to cleverly deceive people as to the true intent of a piece of legislation.
Not anymore! Our educational system routinely graduating functional illiterates has resulted in blunt, ham-fisted language.
That, or they don't think they have to pretend anymore. In any case, the language could not be more clear:
The President should take all constitutional steps...
...to seize and confiscate assets under the jurisdiction of the United States of foreign persons whose wealth is derived in part through corruption linked to or political support for the regime of Russian President Vladimir Putin and with respect to which the President has imposed sanctions.
"Or." That's the conjunction where either provision, "derived in part through corruption" OR "political support for the regime of Russian President Vladimir Putin," is enough to have your assets seized.
If you are a foreign person, and you supported Putin politically, say goodbye to any property you might have subject to U.S. jurisdiction.
Hunter Biden has to be relieved he's not a foreign person.
In fact, if the new standard for initiating extra-judicial takings is using political connections for personal gain, pretty much the bulk of official Washington is potentially imperiled.
I should note here that regardless of what you might think of these accusations, they are still only alleged. Nothing has been proven in a court of law, nothing has been adjudicated. If you are a foreigner, and President Biden believes you've been a political supporter of Putin, and benefited from that connection, he can take your property.
What about due process, you ask? Is there still legal redress? Does the owner have a chance to appeal or to...
Yeah, no. We're doing away with all that legal stuff. We aren't even bothering with a kangaroo court. Too time consuming.
Is this legal?
Not to worry, these assets are being seized under the time-honored international principle of "because we can."
Who could possibly oppose seizing the private property of foreign citizens accused of being a political supporter of a foreign leader Biden doesn't like?
Fascist-loving Nazi Putin stooge Republicans like Marjorie Taylor-Greene, who else?
Oh, and fascist-loving Nazi Putin stooge Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
When these two agree on something, it's probably worth paying attention to.
The bill calls for these assets to be sold and the money used to fund the following:
(5) The President should use all liquidated funds for the benefit of the people of Ukraine, including for the following:
(A) Post-conflict reconstruction in Ukraine.
(B) Humanitarian assistance.
(C) United States government assistance provided to the security forces of the government of Ukraine.
(D) Provisions to support refugees and refugee resettlement in neighboring countries and in the United States.
(E) Technology items and services to ensure the free flow of information to the Ukrainian people in Ukraine, including items to counter internet censorship by Russian authorities, to circumvent efforts to shut down internet or communication services by Russian authorities and bolster the cybersecurity capabilities of Ukrainian Government or non-governmental organizations.
(F) Humanitarian and development assistance for the Russian people, including democracy and human rights programming and monitoring.
So, you know, totally for humanitarian purposes.
...And enriching defense contractors and other political contributors.
But you have absolutely nothing to worry about precedents being established and these new-found powers being directed at domestic enemies. I mean, when has that ever happened?
Other than that.
Okay, and that.
And all the other times, including the ones we don't know about.
Fortunately, there's a two-year time limit on these particular powers.
And everyone knows that when a law has a time limit, it has a time limit, no ifs, ands, or buts, and by "buts" I mean, "but things can get extended a little."
But really, there is nothing to fear here. No precedent is being set, and there is no way the government would ever seize your assets without due process.
Except all the times they do.
Yeah, yeah, we could go on and on about that, and maybe there is some legitimate concern about the already obscene use of asset forfeiture in this country being used to punish political opponents.
You have to understand, unless you march in lockstep support for Ukraine and every action the Biden administration takes with the full backing of almost all Republicans, you just might be a tiny bit of a traitor.
Republican strategist Ana Navarro -- while co-hosting The View on Monday -- suggested that the Department of Justice should investigate whether Carlson is a "foreign asset" who is "shilling for Putin." While we can debate whether he is or isn't, one thing is clear: Carlson is not on the side of democracy over autocracy.
To sum up:
- Engaging in free speech by questioning hurtling into war with little to no debate makes you an opponent of democracy.
- Wanting people who engage in free speech to be investigated by law enforcement, means you're a supporter of democracy.
And if you are a foreign person who thought the United States was a safe place to keep your property due to its long history of protecting private property rights and a legal system that afforded a just process for any disputes that may arise, well...
P.S. Now check out our viral vid "How to speak Bidenese" 😁 👇