This week the 9th circuit court of appeals upheld the conviction of the would be Portland Oregon Christmas tree bomber. The federal court rejected the defense’s argument that the FBI had entrapped the defendant and that the FBI unconstitutionally collected his emails without a warrant. Not only does this ruling uphold warrantless surveillance, it also legitimizes the government's tactics to manufacture terror plots against Americans.I remember this incident very well having been a resident of Oregon for 15 years. It was clear to me then, as well as now, that this was a clear case of FBI inducement and entrapment of an unwitting person (a student at Oregon State University) to commit a terrorist incident that would not have occurred without their involvement.
We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up