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In recent years, government has been ramping up the deployment of federal agencies against the very citizens who pay for them. The National Security Agency, for example, has been conducting massive surveillance operations against innocent Americans. The Internal Revenue Service has been deployed against groups that favor smaller government and lower taxes. Now the U.S. Department of Justice is getting in the act with Operation Choke Point.
As the Daily Caller explains, “Ostensibly designed to fight consumer fraud, Operation Choke Point essentially threatens onerous oversight on financial institutions which do business with companies in industries listed as ‘high-risk.’ ” These include Ponzi schemes, escort services and such, but the DOJ has also put gun and ammunition dealers on the list. One of those gun dealers, in Hawkins, Wisconsin, is operated by Mike Schuetz, a former U.S. Marine who has worked as a probation and parole officer. His credit union suddenly told him to close his account. Schuetz traced this demand to the DOJ operation, telling reporters, “This is just a back door way for those wanting to infringe on your rights to keep and bear arms and is nothing more than discrimination to gun owners.”
Schuetz’s Hawkins Guns LLC was a perfectly legitimate business, which DOJ bosses claim they do not target. “That is a bald-faced lie,” Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy told Fox News. “What they’ve done is they put short-term lenders out of business, gun dealers out of business, ammunition manufacturers out of business. Because in America, if you can’t bank, you can’t do business.” Brian Wise, of the U.S. Consumer Coalition, told Fox News that thousands of businesses have had their bank accounts closed, and that Operation Choke Point is “one of the greatest abuses of power that the country has never heard of.”
That may change, however, because Rep. Duffy wants to hold hearings on Operation Choke Point, a program that fits the pattern of federal abuse against innocents, accompanied by lies and denial. The primary target is guns, so concerned Americans might review the way Nazi Germany handled the issue in Stephen P. Halbrook’s Gun Control in the Third Reich: Disarming Jews and “Enemies of the State.”