Jesse Ventura, the best-selling author and former Independent Minnesota governor, joined my weekly radio show to discuss his fight against the ongoing assault on American freedoms. He described airport security as “gestapo” tactics designed to condition Americans to submit to searches, not measurably to increase security.
He said he would be willing to run for president in 2016, but only in what he called the “unlikely” event that a low-budget, grassroots campaign drafted him and could succeed in including him in the presidential debates, which the parties tightly control.
Washington Update co-host Scott Draughon and I hosted the one-hour weekly show broadcast live nationally via the My Technology Lawyer network. Tune in here to listen to an achive version of the show.
The former pro wrestler's latest book is
following its release in paperback two weeks ago following best-seller status as a hardcover last year, when Russell appeared on our show.
The book is especially timely following continuing revelations of massive secret surveillance by federal agencies on the American public.
The latest was a Bloomberg news report June 13, U.S. Agencies Said to Swap Data With Thousands of Firms. The report, excerpted below, said, “Thousands of technology, finance and manufacturing companies are working closely with U.S. national security agencies, providing sensitive information and in return receiving benefits that include access to classified intelligence, four people familiar with the process said.”
That report followed a week of denials by authorities in both parties that the surveillance exposed former National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden posed any danger to the public or traditional freedoms. Recent revelations and analysis excerpted below includes NSA's own account of its activities, and rebuttals by other experts. Two senators challenged the veracity of NSA Director Keith Alexander, who claimed that surveillance has thwarted many attacks: Udall and Wyden Question NSA Head’s Defense of Surveillance Programs.
Ventura has been a rare voice for years in protesting intrusions on rights in the name of enhanced security.
One of his ongoing protests has been against what he regards as excessive security at airports, which he describes as intended to condition Americans to give up their rights — not to improve security. The Justice Integrity Project reported those 2010-era protests in TSA Boondoogle Defies Logic, Decency. A version was published also on the Huffington Post.
Ventura often clashes with mainstream media cable TV hosts who defend mainstream political leaders and question his judgment on security issues especially. He is a former member of the U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Team 12, the precursor to SEALs. By comparison, he argues that the typical host knows little of security risks except what they are told.
Ventura was Minnesota's governor from 1999 to 2003 after election as an independent following careers as a famed pro wrestler and The former professional wrestler has also been an actor in such films as: The Running Man (1987) and Predator (1987). He is the author or co-author of such previous books as: I Ain't Got Time to Bleed: Reworking the Body Politic from the Bottom up (2000), Quotations of Chairman Jesse (2000), Do I Stand Alone?: Going to the Mat Against Political Pawns and Media Jackals (2001), Jesse Ventura Tells It Like It Is: America's Most Outspoken Governor Speaks Out About Government (2002), The New Prohibition: Voices of Dissent Challenge the Drug War (2004).