Authoritarian America, Part I

My true story of unconstitutional governmental obstruction, entrapment, and interference, and my campaign for president of the United States to restore liberty in America.

What you are about to read is possible only because Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996 rightly protects publishing platforms from the liability of user-generated content and has not yet been altered or repealed. Section 230 is likely the last vestige of free speech separating us from absolute totalitarian control. Without it, I would very likely be dead with my fight to restore liberty in America buried with me.

To the American patriots who have coached me through the last nine years at personal risk to yourselves and your family and to those who have suffered under this system of oppression, my writings, my campaign, and my life are dedicated to you.

For God and country, stay safe.

The following documents my campaign experience and what I hope will be the final chapter of Hijacking America. It is time to turn the page for liberty to strike back.

Read the article series, Hijacking America: Part I, the book, Hijacking America — Liberty Strikes Back, the platform, Restore Liberty in America Platform, and the campaign websites: &

America is a totalitarian state.

Edward Snowden warned us about a sprawling surveillance state. He fled to Russia. Chelsea Manning, too, warned us about unconstitutional surveillance. She spent seven years in prison until President Obama commuted her sentence. Julian Assange, Wikileaks publisher, on the run for years, faces charges of up to 175 years in prison by the US government for publishing news of criminal government action. And now, I’m sharing with you what they have not, that we’re living in a surveillance state that is beyond our wildest imagination. The screen that you’re reading this article on — it’s watching you back — in real-time. If you pay close enough attention, you just might find that the people on the other side of the screen are interacting with you too.

I have spent the better part of the last nine years dodging government entrapment attempts to put me behind bars or worse. Since 2012, they’ve obstructed my attempts to get a job following my time in the Marine Corps, obstructed my attempt to launch my planet-friendly startup, Earth Loans, following my MBA, planted undercover agents in my home, obstructed every aspect of this independent political campaign for president of the United States for the last 17 months, and even forced friends, family and loved ones to appear as though they had turned against me to protect themselves.

Moreover, I have learned in these nine years that billionaire magnates and the US government have conspired to entrap America behind non-disclosure agreements subjecting her people to secrecy and “enthusiastic support American policies” regardless of constitutionality, that the web of entrapment has grown so large that it encompasses a majority of America and much of the world, and that certain experiences have led me to question the very state of our existence — either we’re living in the matrix or there are invisible beings living beside us, interacting with our world, and shaping our reality without our knowing.

My family, friends, and any named source will vehemently deny these charges to preserve themselves as they rightly should. They will attack, disparage, ridicule, and discredit me because failure to do so will bring harm to themselves. The media will attack anyone who makes these claims as an insane schizophrenic, imagining patterns where no pattern supposedly exists, all to maintain control of the population.

In fact, I too, have kept my silence on these most sensitive and unbelievable claims, until now, because if I am right, Election Day 2020 will prove my case. If I am right, then at least one state will vote Joe McHugh, an officially unknown independent candidate for president of the United States, and the election will be thrown into the House of Representatives for the first time since 1876 to settle a disputed election for the purpose of rectifying this perplexing problem.

If you’re wondering how it’s possible to maintain control of so many people, this is how.

CIA Act (1949) + FISA Act (1978) + PATRIOT Act (2001)

The CIA Act of 1949 established the Central Intelligence Agency and provided immunity for the agency and its personnel from Congressional oversight of all activities relating to personnel, finances, and operations. Today’s qualified immunity which is so frequently cited as the basis for exempting government officials and police officers from accountability for violating our constitutional rights — that qualified immunity — originated with the CIA Act of 1949.

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Activities Act (FISA) of 1978 established a secret court system to preside over the activities of the international intelligence community, more commonly known in certain circles as the shadow government or “deep state”. The court system was originally established to ensure that our foreign intelligence surveillance activities were justified and would not bleed into the territorial United States.

Everything changed on September 11, 2001. With terrorism on the shores of America, this new “threat” provided the impetus for increased surveillance at home and abroad.

The USA PATRIOT Act of 2001 expanded the jurisdiction of the FISA courts and our intelligence agencies to include “domestic terrorism” within the territorial United States. The FBI reclassified “terrorism” as anyone with an extreme thought, “individuals or groups” who “espouse extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature,” to be precise. That this definition of “extremist ideologies” lacks a qualifying action and applies to both international and domestic jurisdiction grants the government complete authority to surveil all thought and action anywhere in the world.

But it doesn’t stop there. The acronym “USA PATRIOT,” which stands for “uniting and strengthening America by providing appropriate tools required to intercept and obstruct terrorism,” empowers the government with the means to intercept and block our communications, obstruct our efforts to get a job or launch a business and more. For those who maintain their silence and comply with the police state, you will be fine in this system. However, if you abide by your oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic, as I and others have, you will find yourself labeled as a terrorist, your activities will be obstructed — and you may never know why.

Of course, this was all made possible when, on December 23, 1913, President Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act into law. The act created a private central bank, funded by private money, and reserved no ownership stake for the government or for the people of America. By signing over our money, we empowered the wealthy few to bribe our politicians, to steal our money through inflation, and undermine our hard-won liberty. As the puppet master behind the curtain, they manipulate our intelligence community, control the media, and divide, conquer, and confuse, we, the people, to their advantage. To restore our liberty, we must declassify and open-source the government to verify the truth, and convert the Federal Reserve Bank into the Credit Union of the United States to restore ownership and transparency to the people.

Read Hijacking America Part III and the retitled Overthrowing America articles for greater detail on the USA PATRIOT Act and their use of subjective language in defining terrorism to greatly expand their surveillance and obstruction jurisdiction and activities.

From Puerto Rico to Buffalo

Two years ago, in January of 2019, I moved from Puerto Rico to Buffalo, NY for an opportunity to launch my startup, Earth Loans, as part of a venture capital incubator. The aim: to make loans and investments for a healthy planet. Earth Loans would focus on oil-to-geothermal heat conversions for homes and buildings in New York State and around the country to prove that going green is good for both the planet and our pocketbook.

I had spent the previous 12 months living in Puerto Rico, following the completion of my MBA at Babson College, to cut costs and carbon with the hope of escaping continued government harassment. It didn’t work out that way. Instead, I found myself in a beehive of intelligence activity, a bizarre upside-down world where the homeless were more educated than the gainfully employed, and those who I became acquainted with were turned against me to assist in some form of government-sponsored entrapment and obstruction.

Buffalo, too, seemed out of sorts. Not only did everyone seemingly know who I was, but the program for which I left an island paradise turned out to be complicit in the obstruction of my effort to launch the same company that they had invited me to Buffalo to launch. Moreover, because Buffalo was more expensive than Puerto Rico, I needed to find a part-time income to keep my entrepreneurial efforts alive. The incubator boasted a variety of startup companies, each with specific talent needs; however, my applications went unanswered. I applied for positions ranging from customer service representative at $15 per hour to logistics manager and chief operating officer at $80,000 per year and up, each to no avail. Instead, I received an anonymous lure to launder money with pre-paid cards. To really drive home the point, my contract promised to dilute me of 100% of my company ownership stake over the following 15 years if I did not comply with whatever entrapment they had laid for me.

None of this sat well with me. I was interested in one thing — and that did not involve working for the terror-sponsoring CIA. I wanted only to launch Earth Loans and to be left to do so without obstruction. Ironically, the idea of living free of obstruction with my rights respected was a pipe dream. I had spent too much time learning about the criminal organization that is the US government, and they appeared intent to drag me into their web of lies, deceit, and corruption.

Eventually, I stumbled into a way out of the contract; I defaulted on the tuition payment which prompted my dismissal from the program. When I didn’t beg to return to the program as they had expected and instead provided a list of my demands for re-entry, they realized that their trap had sprung a leak. Cohort leaders began to make emotional pleas for my return to the program. They had a 4% non-dilutive participation stake, an incentive to see Earth Loans succeed, but the program itself refused to insert into the contract the mandatory dilution clause that was necessary to protect my ownership stake.

Now that I need to show the contract, it no longer appears to be on my computer. This happened with Marine Corps info in 2012 too. In fact, while attempting to publish my knowledge, the government disabled my external drive. When I switched to SD cards, they only worked when I turned off the internet. I still have the SD cards.

There is no sense in working to enrich others at personal expense. While it pained me to think of dropping Earth Loans after four years of blood and sweat rather than to comply with their entrapment, losing another 15 years would be far worse. There was only one thing left within my control, the only activity that had not yet been completely obstructed — I would write.

For the next few months, I sat at my chair at the Tonawanda Barnes and Noble, punching my thoughts and experiences into a readable format. Documenting my seven-year experience with a hijacked America from 2012 through 2019 and the thousands of people who offered their anonymous support led me to research the causes that led to America’s entrapment, and to produce the prescriptive policy needed to escape it as part of my book, Hijacking America — Liberty Strikes Back.

With a story to share, a platform to restore liberty in America (, and what I perceived as some degree of a national shadow following, I turned to launch the most improbable of entrepreneurial endeavors — a campaign for president of the United States of America as an unfunded and officially unknown independent candidate for president.

Read Dirty Tricks, Part V: Puerto Rico.

My Independent Campaign for President of the United States of America

Running a solo campaign as an independent candidate for president of the United States while fending off government-sponsored obstruction and interference on a limited food and gas survival budget of $150 per week is challenging. While sleeping in your car and eating tuna out of the can for months may sound glamorous; it’s not. It takes a toll, both mentally and physically. However, once you get over the mental hump of acknowledging your condition, that you’ve chosen to become a homeless vagabond to accomplish your objective, it gets somewhat easier, but not much.

In August and September, I put the finishing touches on my manuscript, turned it into the publisher for editing, engaged my web team to update and reactivate my 2014 campaign website, update graphics, and produce an updated Renew America Blueprint. Unfortunately, this is where my previously reliable service providers raised their fees, slowed their performance, routinely missed deadlines, and discouraged me from putting forth the effort.

With an extremely limited budget, I was easily priced out of the market for many services. The services that I could afford generally failed. Fundly, the social sharing fundraising platform that I had previously successfully employed had disabled their social sharing feature, core to their value proposition as a business, and the sole justification for their premium pricing strategy. Facebook refused to accept my advertising dollars. Video blogging, editing, and recording services, such as,, and others each failed as did my internal computer camera and the external camera replacement. Email to government elections officials was blocked and returned; phone calls were blocked with busy signals, both of which would work when calling or emailing from an account or phone other than my own. VPNs hacked, words replaced in documents as I wrote them, and applications to gig platforms such as Uber, Shipt, and others went nowhere. The lack of working income and technical interference nearly prevented this campaign from even starting.

Eventually, I found a web hosting service that worked. Postmates came through too. My systems weren’t perfect, but they would have to do. I didn’t know how I would get through. I only knew that I had to keep pushing. With the Democratic primary well underway, I needed to launch the campaign.

At around 3am on October 1, 2019, just hours after my 41st birthday, I left Michigan for Buffalo, New York once again. In the weeks before, I had completed the draft of my book, published my book site at, campaign site at, researched a list of target states for ballot access as an independent, and fought through obstruction at every level. That initial October trip went from Michigan to New York, back to Michigan, to Colorado, to South Carolina, Iowa, and eventually to Salt Lake City, Utah in November — all without power brakes.

My brakes and my campaign were electronically-hacked.

Colorado to South Carolina to Iowa, October 2019

America’s partisan apparatus, the Republican, Democratic, and even the Libertarian and Green parties, are all controlled by the CIA and FBI. So, although I had previously run as a Democrat on two occasions for Michigan State House, in 2002 and in 2014, I believed that running as a partisan again would result in entrapment as it has for the other candidates.

Audio working normally in Colorado:

Audio interfered with, did not record my speech moments later:

Audio working again immediately following the talk:

Nevertheless, I resolved to at least explore the option with a trip to South Carolina to participate in the NAACP Democratic Candidate Forum. I changed my party affiliation from Independent to Democrat in order to participate. Unfortunately, that didn’t matter. I sat in the audience listening for cues from the candidates from which there were a few.

The next day, I made the trip from South Carolina to Des Moines, Iowa, to explore support for running in the primary. After a few days of meetings, I found nothing more than a few party operatives who were “satisfied” with their candidates.

Pausing for dinner at an Applebees in Des Moines on Veteran’s Day, a 70-year old man pushed me off balance from behind as he intentionally brushed past me with an aggressive shoulder lean from his high school years. He knew my story, knew about the campaign, and made it very clear that he was not a fan — so I approached him to gauge his reaction. I’ve found that the bully is generally more uncomfortable than the bullied when the latter confronts the former.

I wrote in my journal that night, “He was openly hostile. Real mature. He eventually left the area realizing that he was the child. Keep in mind, I’m still a nobody. He’s a shadow, like the rest of ’em, except he doesn’t like my plan to declassify the government. Fuck ’em. I’ll never understand their desire to hide. Shine the light into the darkness. Let freedom reign.”

This is where it gets tricky. The world is not as it seems. I don’t know how it’s done, but people are informed of what they should not be, feign ignorance of what they know, and are somehow able to communicate with each other as though there was a telepathic voice speaking to them in their head.

Half of the population clamors for authoritarianism in the name of national security. They have grown accustomed to mass surveillance, violation of privacy, and the lack of constitutional rights. They seem to enjoy the right to watch from the other side of the screen those who have not yet been entrapped or those who are entangled with the law. They know your story and everything about you to the extent that your story has gained traction in the government-sponsored dark web reality surveillance shows.

Frequent incidents like this one, sometimes hostile, yet mostly supportive is what leads me to believe that a majority of America is locked behind a State Department NDA that requires “enthusiastic support for American policies” even if the policies themselves are unconstitutional.

Even crazier, this is not merely an American institution. It’s international. At one point, a group of teenage Canadian girls stopped at the gas pump next to me to play a song, express their enthusiastic support in a fawning, smitten manner from their car and left without getting gas.

This barrier is what prevents people from providing direct support or even direct answers. So long as I remain in some form of isolation, any assistance offered is provided in a manner that cannot be traced back to the source. If I err and expose the source, they counter with attacks on my sanity until I correct the issue.

My Hijacking America article series and book, Hijacking America — Liberty Strikes Back, detail the instances that led me to conclude that I was subject to a secret FISA court trial regarding my falsely accused status as a spy who had stolen information related to 9/11 being an inside job. It seems that this secret trial must have had national coverage in the shadow world. I can imagine no other reason why so many people would know my story and of my campaign to restore liberty in America where I have received no press coverage whatsoever.

Utah, Nov-Dec 2019

Electronic vehicles are great as long as the systems are open-sourced. Unfortunately, Government Motors Chevrolet Volts are not open source. Everything in the car was electronic, including the brakes, and easily hacked.

The brakes failed as I left Michigan. I drove the next 20,000 miles, from Colorado to South Carolina and back to Iowa and Utah, without a functioning power brake system. Taking the car in for service didn’t help either. Each time the dealer replaced a part and reset the sensors, the system failed later that day, with the same error. One dealer eventually replaced an internal component deep within the engine, and yet again, the system failed later that day.

The brakes weren’t the only part of the car that routinely failed. Sensors failed soon after being replaced, too, and this is where it gets really crazy, an electronic gas station air pump managed to significantly over-inflate my tires while displaying the presumed reading at the very same time that my manual tire pressure reader failed.

It was as though we were living in The Matrix. I later had an instance, on October 27, 2020, in which my dog leash unclipped itself without breaking just as I was reflecting on the air pump/tire pressure occurrence. As if violating the laws of physics weren’t enough, that the leash unclipped at the precise moment that I reflected on the matrix is too much to ignore. The world is not as it seems.

The navigation system drove me in circles, changed routes, changed locations, destinations, and the addresses of saved contacts. Thankfully, my phone navigation didn’t also fail because paper maps are no longer available at gas stations or convenience marts. (I later found maps at a Barnes & Noble.)

Arriving in Salt Lake City, my first mission was to print the petitions at the local FedEx Office location. Oddly, their computers would no longer print any request from their terminals that included my name in the order, including the petition. The employees, seemingly unsurprised, changed the name on the order and printed the petition sheets for me.

Wasting no time, I found that the University of Utah had a basketball game scheduled for that evening. On the way to the game, a woman in her 60’s driving a minivan rear-ended my car. Her nasty glare accompanied yet another knowing look of fear and familiarity. To disarm the situation, I asked and she reluctantly agreed to be my first petition signee. Following the game during which I collected my first 120 signatures standing outside the arena, a man driving a pickup at an uncomfortably high speed came to a screeching halt within inches of my car nearly rear-ending my Volt for the second time that night. Neither incident appeared to be a coincidence. The intimidation phase of obstruction was underway.

The students at the University of Utah saved the day. Nearly nine in ten students agreed to sign my petition, testing me on my perspectives, experiences, and intentions should I win in November. Each day for a two-week period leading up to Thanksgiving break, after rising from my back-seat car slumber, exercising and prepping for the day at the local Planet Fitness, and eating the routine breakfast of tuna out of the can, raw eggs, apples, bananas, peanut butter, and Shakeology, I set up shop outside the library with my petition clipboard and business cards in hand.

I averaged approximately 100 signatures per day, stopping people on the sidewalk, joining meetings, speaking with small groups, attending Jazz basketball games, and generally speaking with anyone who happened near me while on the job, until I hit the 1,000 signature mark. I even attended two stellar tailgating events for the highly ranked Utah Utes football program, which made for exciting work. One instance nearly resulted in a one-on-four brawl over women’s rights and privacy or the lack thereof from their authoritarian male perspective, while most people welcomed me with open arms to discuss politics and football, an unusual mix to say the least.

It was cold, overcast, and rainy on Thanksgiving morning. I didn’t know it yet, but I was about to suffer a miserably lonely weekend lacking in the support that I had become accustomed to without the students at the university.

I had hit the 1,000 signature mark the day before and decided to work the weekend to collect another couple hundred more signatures to account for the inevitable shortfall. Compounding matters, I had lost my Postmates card ten days earlier and was quickly running low on cash. My replacement card never arrived. I speculated that our mail was monitored after the mail-based anthrax attacks and USA PATRIOT Act of 2001, and requested a replacement card be sent to another name and address in California. Nevertheless, without the card, I could not work my customary three to five hours per night for the $30–45 per night that I needed to survive and my money was starting to running low again.

Speaking of money running low, our system is completely backward. When people run low on funds, we need a break. Instead, with the banking system set up the way it is, a bill might hit a checking account on a different day every month, which can make life difficult for people with tight budgets. Every time the account goes into overdraft, the bank assesses a $39 fee, not just for the combined event, but generally for each bill that contributed to the overdraft! This means that people who already struggle to make ends meet must also contend with unplanned exorbitant bank fees. It’s no wonder that so many people live without bank accounts. If you’ve got a tight budget, a bank account is not worth the hassle! This absolutely needs to be addressed. If end up in the position to do something about it, this is on my list of action items.

Towards the end of my time in Puerto Rico, I reached the point of overwhelming hunger and broke down with the sweet taste of a fresh organic apple. Knowing the pain of hunger and frequently having food with me since I lived in my car, I offered food to the homeless whenever our paths crossed.

“Julia” huddled outside at the corner of the plaza under her blankets. She looked my way so I approached and offered her something to eat. Rather than accepting my offer of packaged tuna, she shared that she had $20 and wanted to spend it on a hot meal at the local Chinese buffet, one of the few places open in the city. On the way there, I asked about her situation. She shared that she suffered from anxiety after being raped and abused in her youth.

The hostess sat us at a table within view of the Lions game playing in the background. The buffet included Chinese, sushi, a salad and fruit bar, dessert, and a warm, dry seat surrounded by happy people enjoying the company of each other. It was a welcome sight even if it reminded me that I wasn’t with my family or friends for Thanksgiving. Julia’s invitation helped me to escape and to enjoy conversation from a very different perspective. She shared a bit too much for my comfort though. I had to ask her to stop with the propositions. We weren’t going to have sex.

Black Friday turned out to be a wash for signatures. Exhausted and a bit frustrated, I set the petition aside for the evening and to visit Temple Square. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a spectacular compound that includes an enormous temple, lighted gardens, and walkways for thousands of people. Knowing that you’re always being watched is enough to make one want to find solace in a corner temple pew. Even then, however, and I am grateful for it, I was approached, greeted, and promised that “We’ll see you soon.” What that meant, I was still unsure, but it was as though I were expected to wake from a dream from within the matrix.

Now, imagine for a moment that everyone you knew and many others were entrapped and enslaved in a system that required that they lie to everyone about everything for as long as they lived. Imagine that you had stumbled upon this knowledge errantly and as a result of your newfound awareness, perfect strangers no longer hid the fact that they knew everything about you, heard everything you said, even in private, and judged you for it all, positively or negatively. To me, it sounds like a dystopian psycho-drama, yet it was my life. Yoga and yoga friends, exercise, clean eating, fresh air, casual conversation, focusing on the positive, and the occasional unexpected pleasing encounter helped to maintain my sanity.

Reflecting on my journal as I write this, it is clear that however painful the process was, it was effective in refining my political presentation and preparing me for the unusually harsh criticism that comes with public life. I also have come to appreciate their circumstances as well. They lived under authoritarian rule. Failure to comply had consequences. That’s not a way to live.

When the government offices reopened, I promptly turned in my petitions and made the trip to California for a break while they counted the signatures. My Postmates card had arrived there too. I would be able to continue the campaign.

Visiting friends in California was just the break that I needed. As entrepreneurs without a family to care for, they seemed to be exempt from some of the encumbrances that caused others to distance themselves from me. The change of scenery, good long runs in the California sun, and time to reflect did me well.

A few days later, Salt Lake County called to inform me that I was short of the signature target by two hundred some signatures. Just days before the university shut down for winter break, I had a small window to finish the job. No less than 20 minutes after receiving the phone call, I was back on the road to Salt Lake City.

The students knew that I had a limited window of opportunity left and offered ideas. One student suggested that I hit up frat row, so that’s exactly what I did. Two fraternities invited me to speak — my first couple of audiences of between 50–80 people gave me the opportunity to practice my pitch and handle questions on the spot. Legalized cannabis and a preference for medium-rare steak brought in the greatest applause the signatures needed to hit the mark. Salt Lake City Community College helped, too, for a price — they had me dance the Macarena — on video. Good times. The next day, I turned in 300 signatures for a total of 1,500.

I was still canvassing when Salt Lake County Elections called — we hit the mark. However, I later learned at the Lieutenant Governor’s Office that I could not submit the petitions until March. They offered to hold my petition signatures until then, but after so much obstruction, I could not risk the potential for my signatures being misplaced. While I had to wait to officially file, it also meant that I was at risk of falling short of my goal to become an official candidate for president of the United States before the Christmas break. When I shared the news online, friends chipped in for the Colorado filing fee. While the paper drill could not be completed until March, the heavy lifting was done.

On December 17, 2019, the day after learning that I could not turn in my signatures until March, an intruder shattered my front passenger window while I slept in the car presumably to steal the petitions, which I kept in my computer bag on the front passenger seat. I rolled over and nearly slept through the entire event. But the intruder seemed intent on waking me. Rather than complete his snatch-and-dash with my computer bag in hand, I awoke to find two glove hands moving about aimlessly inside the car. My first instinct was to jump out and pummel the guy, but because he made no effort to take anything, I suspected a trap. Since the windows were fogged, I didn’t know if he was alone or not and chose to fend him off from within the car.

It was about 4am at this point. There was snow on the ground. It was cold and everything was closed. I moved my car to a well-lit lot around the corner near the car dealership where I expected to have my window replaced in the morning. That was when the windowless work van rounded the corner and parked on the street, facing me. I considered my options. My preference, to approach him on foot armed with my serrated flashlight and steel-tipped pen, seemed too likely to result in a physical altercation, which could complicate my candidacy. Instead, I went against my instinct to beat the daylights out of him, drove by to find him holding his coffee cup with his glove hand, pulled over behind the van to reconsider my decision, pondered slashing his tires with my knife, and eventually chose to document his plate so as to submit a report to, which, incredibly, wouldn’t submit. I rounded the corner to return to my spot, found a police car, reported the incident, and when I learned that I had nothing but a license plate, furiously, I returned to the place where the van was last parked to find that he was gone.

I was livid. I wanted nothing more than to take eight years of aggression out on this suspicious intruder and yet I had to choose between the campaign and a potential assault and battery charge, which could spell the end of the campaign. To make matters worse, my insurance didn’t cover the window repair. I was out $230, over a week of work.

Emotionally, this was an extraordinarily challenging period for me. I had pledged my life to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, only to learn that the nation that I loved was hijacked and entrapped behind a non-disclosure agreement that if violated, threatened death to you, your family, and anyone who associated with the marked man.

Additionally, it seemed that the surveillance state was complete. Somehow everyone knew everything I said, everything I wrote, and seemingly, everything I thought without saying out loud. Random people would make comments as I passed by, some supportive, others not, but in either case, confirming that they knew exactly who I was and what I was doing. Again, I have no explanation for this. It was either the Matrix or some surveillance technology that I wasn’t privy to. In any case, those moments of support, positive comments, and laughs made all the difference. I was going through a lot, most of which, I really didn’t understand.

Christmas break was stressful too. It’s never been one of my favorite holidays, but this Christmas was worse. I was terrorized at the thought that the nation had been hijacked, they were actively suppressing my efforts as one might expect, and yet I received mixed messages as though everything was an act. To me, I was fighting for my life and I wanted nothing more than to thrust my Marine Corps-issued knife directly into the throats of my assailants and give it a good twist and rip. I knew that it wouldn’t help my cause, but neither did my dreams of intrusion, fighting with shadow enemies, and the knowledge that even the people closest to me were somehow complicit in this unwanted and unnecessary bit of apparent theater.

While others seemed to expect my situation to improve, little changed for me other than my visceral desire to return to Utah to give the guy what he deserved plus a little extra. I attempted to do that before leaving Utah too, but the reverse plate look-up service failed as well. I was more frustrated than ever before. The intruder triggered a rage that was difficult to control. I knew I had made the right choice, but it didn’t sit well that someone had put this guy up to intruding upon my space and property as part of some ploy. A real thief would have made off with my computer bag and the petitions along with it. This guy did neither. I felt disrespected and violated — and I wanted payback.

With that said, I must admit my role in attracting the intruder. I had been training at Planet Fitness regularly; I was in excellent shape and I missed my Marine Corps days. I wanted to fight. It seemed that whoever was listening decided to give me that opportunity. But again, I have to question the judgment of whoever made that decision. Political candidates are not supposed to get into skirmishes. I also feared that would go too far.

Going through this led me to identify with and understand the deeply damaging and dangerous effects that feelings of loneliness and isolation can have on an individual. We must do better as a society in identifying and working with people, especially young people, who may be going through challenging times. Where society is closed behind curtains of classification, it is more likely than not that people are being intentionally radicalized for political objectives — and that’s dangerous.

As for me, even though there were many happy memorable times in Salt Lake City and I’ll cherish those times, people, and experiences, instead of closing 2019 with a feeling of accomplishment, it ended with anger and frustration.

Read Authoritarian America, Part II

Joe McHugh is an Independent candidate for President, Forex & crypto CTA; political-economic analyst, and founder of Earth Loans.

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