The news you're not supposed to know...

Austrian Economics: Understand Economics, Understand the World
The Century of the Self: The Untold History of Controlling the Masses Through the Manipulation of Unconscious Desires
The Disappearing Male: From Virility to Sterility

The Obama Deception: The Mask Comes Off
Operation Gladio: The Hidden History of U.S. Sponsored False Flag Terrorism in EuropeThe New American Century: The Untold History of The Project for the New American Century
Article posted Aug 13 2013, 5:37 AM Category: Politics/Corruption Source: Techdirt Print

DOJ Decided To Ratchet Up Case Against Aaron Swartz Because He Spoke Out Publicly About Being Innocent

by Mike Masnick

A few weeks ago, we wrote about the MIT report concerning the case against Aaron Swartz. A number of people have picked up on some really questionable things in the report. One incredible claim made in it was that Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Heymann, who was running the prosecution against Swartz, apparently admitted that he really only ramped up his efforts against Swartz to punish Swartz and the organization he founded, Demand Progress, for having the audacity to discuss the case publicly and explain why Swartz believed he didn't do anything wrong. Here's the passage from the report:
The prosecutor said that, pre-indictment, he had wanted to approach the case on a human level, not punitively. To this extent he made an extremely reasonable proposal, and was "dumb-founded" by Swartz's response.

The prosecutor said that the straw that broke the camel's back was that when he indicted the case, and allowed Swartz to come to the courthouse as opposed to being arrested, Swartz used the time to post a "wild Internet campaign" in an effort to drum up support. This was a "foolish" move that moved the case "from a human one-on-one level to an institutional level." The lead prosecutor said that on the institutional level cases are harder to manage both internally and externally
MIT used this to explain why it thought that any public statements it might make in support of Swartz would make the case worse for him, because Heymann, in his petty vindictive mind, might view it as a further "wild" public campaign by Swartz. Leaving aside that this makes absolutely no sense at all, the actions of Heymann are particularly despicable here, suggesting that merely professing your innocence to crimes that you believe you are innocent of, should lead to much greater prosecution.

This passage has now caught the attention of Rep. Darrell Issa, and he is asking Attorney General Eric Holder about whether or not the DOJ directly comes down hard on those who exercise their First Amendment rights in the face of questionable prosecutions:
"The implication that the Department ratcheted up the prosecution by moving the case to 'an institutional level' after it discovered the petition by Demand Progress suggests that the Department acted in a retaliatory manner and that it bases its charging decisions on externalities such as an Internet campaign," Issa, who chairs the House Oversight Committee, wrote in his letter to Holder.

"The suggestions that prosecutors did in fact seek to make an example out of Aaron Swartz because Demand Progress exercised its First Amendment rights in publicly supporting him raises new questions about the Department's handling of the case," Issa wrote.
A separate point that comes out in the report that is equally as absurd was that Heymann believed that the case required some jail time as punishment because it "involves the unauthorized downloading of intellectual property that cost millions of dollars to create." This is ridiculous on so many levels. First of all, MIT made those works freely available to anyone on campus, so the argument that it was "unauthorized" remains very questionable. Second, the "cost millions of dollars to create" argument is simply laughable. Nearly all of that was publicly funded by taxpayer money, which is supposed to lead to the enrichment of public learning and knowledge -- the exact thing that Swartz appeared to be focused on. This ridiculous belief that he needed to be put in prison because of the monetary cost of creating these educational works is astounding. And sad, given the eventual outcome.

It's no secret that the DOJ often seems to think that "intellectual property" laws are designed to protect the moneyed interests of copyright holders, but that's not what the Constitution or the law says. At the very least, the people hired as US Attorney's to represent the US government should know better than to ratchet up prosecution for people who are expressing their First Amendment rights and doing things that directly align with the Constitutional reasons for copyright law.

Assistant US Attorney Stephen Heymann is a disgrace to the Constitution he's supposed to be defending.

Latest Politics/Corruption
- Trump Surveillance State Will Combat Islam
- Obama Claims ISIS "Contained" Day Before Paris Attacks
- Cabal of Corruption Alleged at Bagram Air Base
- Roger Stone: Bill Clinton is a Cosby-Like Sexual Predator
- Former French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, a Suspect After 680 Kilos of Cocaine Found On Private Jet
- Donald Trump Tears John Kasich Apart During Debate
- P. Diddy Abandons "Vote or Die" Movement, Says Voting Is A "Scam"
- Ben Carson Says He's Against Marijuana Legalization, Would "Intensify" War On Drugs

Comments 1 - 3 of 3 Add Comment Page 1 of 1

Posted: Aug 13 2013, 7:18 PM

2049 How sad our government has become. We live in a time of waiting for the other shoe to drop. When it does drop, the outrage against our governing enemies will be swift and final. Those who rule us are as brain dead as the slugs I just poisoned in my garden. Web sites keep telling the populace to wake-up. I believe that it is our so called rulers who should wake up.

Posted: Aug 13 2013, 9:46 PM

687 great description 2049.drop the anonymous please we gots ta face em.

Posted: Aug 20 2013, 7:45 AM

9885 So judges can attack and discriminate against people for their party affiliation just like the NSA, can't wait for more lawsuits due to those abusing their power to punish citizens over personal conflicting ideals!

Add Comment


Verification *
Please Enter the Verification Code Seen Below

Please see our About Page, our Disclaimer, and our Comments Policy.

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which in some cases has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available for the purposes of news reporting, education, research, comment, and criticism, which constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. It is our policy to respond to notices of alleged infringement that comply with the DMCA and other applicable intellectual property laws. It is our policy to remove material from public view that we believe in good faith to be copyrighted material that has been illegally copied and distributed by any of our members or users.

About Us - Disclaimer - Privacy Policy

Advanced Search


Remember Me
Forgot Password?

VIDEO: Off-Duty Cop Rams His SUV Into Man's Car For Trying To Hold Him Accountable For Reckless Driving - 11/30The Mathematical Paradox That Destroys The Argument For NSA Surveillance - 11/30Paul Craig Roberts Rages At The "Arrogance, Hubris, & Stupidity" Of The US Government - 11/30Police Brutality Victim Mysteriously Killed a Day Before Receiving $450k Settlement - 11/30Two Brave Cops Under Attack For Exposing Militarization and Corruption in Their Department - 11/30Donald Sutherland Reveals The Real Meaning Of The Hunger Games - 11/27LA to Scan All Cars, Publicly Shame Anyone Who Drives Through a 'Prostitution Area' - 11/30Details of How The Paris Attacks Were Carried Out Show Little Effort by Attackers to Hide Themselves - 11/30

Man Follows Speeding Cop, Finds Out He Was Speeding To Buy PeanutsMission Creeps: Homeland Security Agents Confiscate Women's Panties For 'Copyright Infringement'Cop Shoots Couple's Dog, Threatens Jail For Trying To Save Dog's LifeSWAT Team Shoots Teen Girl & Her Dog During Pot Raid On Wrong HomeDurham, NC Cop Testifies Faking 911 Calls To Enter Homes Is "Official Policy"Indiana Sheriff Says US A "War Zone" To Justify New MRAP Military VehicleTampa Cops Surveil Pot Dealer, Catch Him Selling Pot, Raid His Home & Kill Him"You Just Shot An Unarmed Man!": Witness Says Police Shot His Friend With His Hands Up