Actor Steven Seagal is in the news for having recently agreed to pay the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over $330,000.00 for promoting a crypto-currency.
Say what you will about Seagal’s personal life, he did a tremendous amount to popularize the Japanese martial art of aikido. In 1997, I attended a four day aikido seminar in Santa Barbara, California with him and my face wound up in a magazine and documentary film because of it.
I'm in there from 34:16 to 34:30, so, I owe him for fourteen seconds of fame.
While setting aside controversies about his life choices, personality, and acting ability, I can attest that the aikido techniques presented at that seminar in 1997 were solid. As a police officer at the time, my interest in martial arts was purely focused on practicality and what Seagal Sensei taught was extremely useful to me in the field.
What is the alleged crime?
According to the complaint, Seagal was paid about $157K for participating in a webinar for Bitcoiin2Gen and then promoting the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) with some social media posts on Facebook and Twitter.
Seagal posted his social media promotions six months after the SEC determined, on its own, that selling crypto-currencies “may” be subject to US federal securities law, “depending on the particular facts and circumstances”.
Clear. As. Mud.
As though that definition wasn’t arbitrary enough, the result of this bureaucratic regulatory interpretation is to override the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. You know, the one that prohibits the general government from making any laws abridging the freedom of speech.
Seagal neglected to write a lawyer-speak earnings disclaimer into his tweets, so now he has to pay back double the amount he was paid plus sixteen grand worth of “prejudgement interest”.
To see the insidious nature of this deep state regulatory agency, wielding the concentrated power to make its own rules (legislate), prosecute violators (executive), and determine the penalties for such violations (judicial), we have to go back to its inception.
The Securities Act of 1933 was signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt as part of the New Deal programs aimed at commandeering the economy of the United States. The SEC was created by Congress the following year.
While FDR didn’t identify as a socialist, his Raw Deal policies aimed to control all aspects of economic life in order to serve his political ends. FDR was every bit of an authoritarian central economic planner as the other fascist and national socialist regimes emerging in Europe during the 1930’s.
He confiscated gold and other precious metals held by ordinary Americans with the Emergency Banking Act of 1933. Compounding the insult that US government meddling with the money supply and interest rates caused the Great Depression leading to this additional legislation, they seized private property and forced regular citizens to pay for, again, for bureaucratic malpractice.
FDR also caged Americans of Japanese descent without trial based on an Executive Order and made virtually every American’s decision subject to bureaucratic review.
The Constitution shredding legacy of FDR’s unique fascism now haunts the entire globe. Any financial transaction that touches an American citizen or institution is subject to US regulations and the hungry bureaucrats are eager to get their mitts on decentralized currencies specifically designed to give people alternatives to the fiat money that saps their productivity.
Of course, you don’t learn about this side of American history in the government indoctrination camps known as public schools. The state sponsored propaganda machine has convinced most Americans that the republic would fall and all the shelves would be barren if not for the self-righteous overlords controlling the economy and protecting you from the best enemies money can buy.
You’ve been lied to.
Benjamin Franklin was correct in pointing out that those who surrender essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
There’s nothing in the Constitution that authorizes the general government to curtail speech as a brand ambassador. The twisted interpretation of the Commerce Clause, granting Congress to regulate trade among the several states, foreign nations, and Indian tribes (note the absence of individuals and companies) is another result of FDR’s Raw Deal.
The power hungry will always try to justify their encroachments with emergencies and exigent circumstances. Temporary measures, like the Emergency Banking Act, will become permanent or radically alter the nature of essential freedoms.
Now they want you to believe that Seagal tweeting “congratulations” or “stay tuned for more information” on social media is a crime.
Awakening is the antidote.
To see just how far Constitutional self-government has strayed from the way things were supposed to be (and can be), like a good martial artist, you have to get back to the basics.
Cut through delusion with the sword of truth.
That’s what Liberty Dojo is all about. Learn practical history, political theory, and economics from qualified professors, where and when you want.
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