Alaskan teabaggers see East Germany from their houses too

They Can See East Germany From Their House

by digby

So I watched the mindblowing Youtube of Joe Miller's Matrix thugs treating the press like protesters in Communist East Germany (obviously at Miller's bidding, seeing as he admires the their policies so much) and couldn't shake the idea that it reminded me of something.

And then it hit me:

Sarah Palin & company spent several days in Homer filming her "Sarah Palin's Uh-laska" show. (Eyes rolled).

On the public dock, private security patted down private citizens. The Fourth Amendment protects citizens from unreasonable search and seizure from their government. Private security searching private citizens in a public place, doesn't fall under that category. It's a bit more hinky.

Whether it was TLC or the Palins who contracted security, under what authority did they operate in a public location? Were they looking for weapons? Well, now there's a Second Amendment issue.

This is Alaska, we carry guns. You can open-carry or acquire a concealed weapons permit from the state. If you are a law abiding citizen, you don't even need a permit. Sarah Palin recently endorsed Alaska Tea Party Candidate Joe Miller for US Senate. His supporters carried assault rifles in last month's Golden Days Parade in Fairbanks. If weapons are good enough for a public parade, weapons should be fine at a public dock.

Maybe it wasn't about guns. Maybe it was about cameras. In that case, it's a First Amendment issue. Whether Palin had a problem with the First Amendment, the Second Amendment or the Fourth Amendment, she contradicted her entourage's actions at the Homer dock.

Risking accusations of being all "Wee-Wee'd Up", one Homer woman made a sign in her shed. She then took the 30-foot-by-3-foot banner out to the boat harbor. It said "WORST GOVERNOR EVER". Kathleen Gustafson is a teacher married to a local commercial fisherman. She felt like Sarah Palin had let the state down by becoming a dollar-chasing celebrity and ignoring the oath of office she'd sworn on a Bible.

Saturday morning, Billy Sullivan helped Kathleen tape the banner up on his place of business at the top of the boat ramp. Then here she came. Sarah.

She couldn't just walk by. Only a few fishermen and tourists would have seen the banner, but Sarah had to stop and protest....

Billy Sullivan caught much of the interchange on his cell phone camera. The back of her security guard's head and Todd Palin attempted to block Billy's view...

In what has become typical tragic irony, Sarah initially claimed to support Kathleen's First Amendment Rights. But as soon as Billy Sullivan walked toward the dock, one of Palin's entourage tore down the sign to great applause from her group.

Todd Palin approached Billy (who owns a business called Dockside Fish and buys halibut on that dock) and asked him to get out of the Discovery crew's shot. "You just can't get enough of her, can you?" he asked. An Alaska State Trooper told Billy he should call the Homer Police Department and report the trespassing and destruction of property.

I lived in Alaska for a long time. I'm married to an Alaskan and some of my best friends are Alaskans. This isn't an Alaskan thing. It's a teabagger thing. They are authoritarians. They have no respect for others' individual rights, only their own.

Here's how the head Miller thug sees the issue (backed up by the campaign, I might add)

Fulton said that as a security guard he is familiar with state law, and he believes he has the legal authority to police "private events" no matter where might take place. He refused to answer how exactly a member of the public attending Miller's town hall meeting at a public school was supposed to know it was a private event, but said the Joe Miller sign outside was the giveaway.

The meeting was open to the public. There were no names taken at the door. Reporters were not asked to apply for credentials.[It was even publicized on Twitter and Facebook -- ed]

"This is a simple trespassing issue," Fulton insisted, but no one else trespassing in the hallway with Hopfinger was detained. Fulton said Hopfinger was special because he showed those signs of "violence." Friends of Hopfinger said the reporter has been known to lose his temper and yell at people on occasion, but he's a bit florid, visibly out of shape, and no apparent threat in scuffle. Some of his friends joke that his wife could probably take him in a fight.

Fulton agreed with Hopfinger that there were a lot of people in the hallway. Some of them might have been other reporters, he said.

"I think we told them (all) to leave," Fulton said. "It's not a public (place) if it's leased. It was a private event ... because it's a private event, and we've taken over the school."

Fulton said he felt no obligation to explain to Hopfinger how a reporter doing his job -- asking questions of a political candidate -- could be trespassing at a public school during a public event.

"I don't educate the public," he said.

Fulton said he told Hopfinger to leave. Hopfinger didn't leave. So he banged him into a wall and cuffed him. End of story.

There you have it. Imagine what would have happened if nobody had cameras.

Update: So it turns out that what Miller was reprimanded for was using borough computers to cheat on an online political poll and then covering it up. The guy's a judge.