Does anybody know Bernard von NotHaus? He is the "monetary architect" convicted in federal court last month. An eight-day trial and less than two hours of deliberation saw the conviction of the man behind the Liberty Dollar. He was found guilty of making coins resembling United States coins and of issuing and passing Liberty Dollar coins intended for use as current money; and of conspiracy against the United States. Von NotHaus could face as much as 20 years in jail and fines of $500,000 on sentencing.
According to federal prosecutors, Liberty coins were marked with the dollar sign; the words "dollar," "USA," "Liberty," "Trust in God" (replacing "In God We Trust") and other features which allegedly sought to perpetrate legitimate U.S. coins. In other words, activities which in today's America... make you a terrorist.
For those who do not recall, the Liberty Dollar first appeared circa 1998 and was treated with the nostalgic fondness befitting a novelty item. In those days of booming funny money, von NotHaus was treated like a charming eccentric. His "inflation proof" currency which sought to establish an alternative to the U.S. Dollar, was hardly news worthy.
What a Difference a Decade Makes
In November 2007 federal investigators raided the Liberty Dollar's headquarters. Federal agents seized nearly two tons of coins featuring Ron Paul's image. They also took about 500 pounds of silver and 40 to 50 ounces of gold. The feds are currently seeking the forfeiture of about 16,000 pounds of Liberty Dollar coins and precious metals, valued at nearly $7 million. Last month the following words accompanied the von NotHaus conviction:
Attempts to undermine the legitimate currency of this country are simply a unique form of domestic terrorism, while these forms of anti-government activities do not involve violence, they are every bit as insidious and represent a clear and present danger to the economic stability of this country. We are determined to meet these threats through infiltration, disruption and dismantling of organizations which seek to challenge the legitimacy of our democratic form of government.
Pretty amazing. Pretty scary. Pretty inefficient. Armed robbery is not so complex. Why waste taxpayer dollars with false judicial protocol? Putting a loaded gun in the man's mouth would be so much easier. Not to mention... far more genuine.
We have had sham trials in this country before. This is nothing new. It is, however, a loud and clear message to the public as to what their free will is worth. Nothing.
For the record, there is absolutely no Constitutional provision banning individuals from using an exchange medium of their own choice. Funny how Food Stamps are fine, but Silver is not.
The von NotHaus sham trial is yet another spit in the face of individual rights and freedoms. Notions which are quickly becoming extinct in order to preserve the interests of a select few groups. It is the perfect dance partner to the Bradley Birkenfeld decision of 2009. It is a stark reminder of who the real criminals are and how far they will go to lock up the truth. One can only imagine how long before impure thoughts become an actionable offense which defines the domestic terrorist...