Matt Shea has served as a state representative for Washington since 2008. He's also a violent religious separatist and a member of the extreme right-wing Patriot Movement. Shea was an ardent supporter of Cliven Bundy, the Mormon extremist who lead a face-off with the government over cattle-grazing fees and an admitted act of arson, and later joined in on the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. He also has a history of violent road rage, and has been accused of physical abuse by multiple ex-wives. And then there was that whole thing with child training camps for an impending race war.
Somehow, none of that has disqualified him thus far from serving in the Washington State House of Representatives. But that might change, thanks to a new report from an independent investigation into his activities. From NPR:
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Independent investigators commissioned by the Washington State House of Representatives found that Shea, as a leader of the Patriot Movement, "planned, engaged in, and promoted a total of three armed conflicts of political violence against the United States government" between 2014 and 2016.
The report also concluded that Shea was involved in training young people to fight a "holy war." He created a pamphlet called Biblical Basis for War and advocated replacing the government with a theocracy and "the killing of all males who do not agree."
Chat messages showed Shea, a lawyer who was first elected in 2008, condoned intimidation of opponents, political activists, government officials and Muslims.
Since the 2008 financial crisis, the "sovereign citizen" movement/conspiracy theory (previously) has grown by leaps and bounds, thanks to a combination of the rise of antisemitism (long a dogwhistle in the movement, now out in the open), an increase in financial desperation and a sense of betrayal, and the movement's ability to realize real cash for its members, who have systematically defrauded the underfunded and resource-strapped IRS of move than $1B.
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In the first volume of Briggs Land
Brian Wood set up a gripping scenario: a leadership struggle in a far-right separatist cult whose leader has languished in prison for decades. Now, in the second collection
Wood and his collaborators are playing out the story for all it's worth.
Rancher Cliven Bundy and his sons are to be charged over the headline-grabbing 2014 standoff in Nevada where militiamen pointed guns at cops and forced them into a humiliating public retreat.
They were already charged in connection to the recent Oregon Wildlife Refuge takeover marshaled by the son, Ammon Bundy, which ended after a monthlong siege and the death of one of the occupiers.
The indictment stems from what federal officials have described as the "massive armed assault'' by Cliven Bundy and his co-defendants against federal law enforcement officers who tried to corral about 400 cattle near the Bundy Ranch.They're accused of planning, organizing and leading the 2014 assault and recruiting hundreds of others in an armed force to thwart the seizure and removal of Cliven Bundy's cattle from public lands. It accuses the elder Bundy of trespassing on the public lands for more than 20 years, refusing to get the legally required permits or pay the required fees to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to keep and graze his cattle on the land.
The charges include conspiracy, assault on a federal officer, threatening a federal officer, obstructing justice, and extortion. Read the rest
Video Link [thanks Bob and David Pescovitz, it's a joke everyone]
Previously. Read the rest