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May 27, 2005

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WTP currently has two critical projects that take precedence in time, order and importance: 1) the Right to Petition lawsuit; and 2) Joe Banister.

The Right to Petition lawsuit remains our highest priority. At issue is the meaning of the last ten words of the First Amendment, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

We have asked the federal District Court in and for the District of Columbia to do what no court has been asked to do since the adoption of the Bill of Rights in 1791 --- that is, to declare the meaning and define the contours of the Right “to Petition the government for a Redress of Grievances.”

We have told the Court that we are of one mind with the Founding Fathers who led the 1774 Continental Congress to declare that, “When money is wanted by rulers who have in any manner oppressed the People they may retain their money until their grievances are redressed and thus peaceably procure relief, without relying on the despised Petitions and without disturbing the public tranquility.”

We have argued before the Court that the Right, “to Petition the Government for a Redress of Grievances” means the People, with evidence that the government is abusing its constitutionally limited power, have the Right to submit a Petition for a Redress (remedy) of the constitutional wrongdoing, that government has an obligation to honestly respond to the People’s Petition and, should the government ignore the People, the People have the Right to enforce the Right of Petition by retaining their money until their grievances are Redressed.

We have argued that there is no other non-violent way for the People to enforce their unalienable, individual Rights. We have argued that the ballot is only for the majority.

The government has responded to our lawsuit by asking the Court to dismiss the case, claiming the Constitution does not require the government to listen or respond to the People’s Petition for Redress of Grievances.

We don’t need to remind People of the grave importance of this matter. It’s an historical case of first impression. Freedom, and our servant government (not to be confused with “the Country” and referred to by President Ronald Reagan as, “the enemy of freedom”) have a lot at stake. Nothing less than the future of Liberty and the fate of our constitutional republic are at risk.

Nationally renowned civil rights attorney Mark Lane is representing almost 2000 named Plaintiffs in the case -- Americans who have testified that they are retaining their money because the government has refused to respond to their Petitions for a Redress of Grievances relating to the government’s systemic and continuing abuse of its constitutional powers to tax, make war, incur debt and police.

With the filing of our Sur-Reply on February 27th, the issues were fully briefed. We are currently awaiting Judge Sullivan’s decision on the government’s motion to dismiss. A denial of the motion means there will be discovery and a trial. If the motion to dismiss is granted, there will be an immediate appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals.

Either way, there is much work ahead to ensure the success of this landmark, history- making case. WTP’s agreement with the Lane Law Firm is that the Firm would see the case though to the end and that WTP would apply its “best efforts” to raise specific amounts of money to pay for the work.

For the current phase, WTP is obligated to apply our best efforts to raise $135,000 on top of what has already been paid to the Lane Law Firm.

WTP Chairman Bob Schulz has recently sold some real property for $40,000, which will be going to the Lane Law Firm toward the Foundation’s payment . We have a plan for raising the remainder, about $100,000. More on that in a moment.

Citizen Banister

As a CPA and former IRS Criminal Investigation Division Agent, Joseph Banister is much more than one of the lead plaintiffs in the Right to Petition lawsuit. He is one of the finest citizens ever to have been raised in America. He is the perfect role model for anyone responsible for teaching others about good citizenship.

Citizen Banister is knowledgeable. Yes, Joe Banister went to college and became a distinguished and publicly decorated professional in the fields of accounting and law enforcement, he nurtured a model American family, and learned how to succeed and attain his piece of the American “dream”. However, beyond his knowledge and enjoyment of the privileges of his status as an American citizen, Citizen Banister also learned about his Rights -- and the individual duties and responsibilities attendant upon his condition as a citizen in a free nation with a republican form of government.

Citizen Banister knows the importance of being informed about his Rights and the importance of eternal citizen vigilance --- People comparing government’s actual behavior with the requirements of their written Constitutions --- and, Citizen Banister knows the importance of the most awesome responsibility bestowed upon each and every American citizen: questioning and confronting our servant government when we see government abusing the limited powers the People granted it to use in the protection and advancement of their Rights and interests.

Citizen Banister is also morally beyond reproach. He exemplifies what every American struggles toward in life in that he is virtuous, righteous, kind, benevolent, well-mannered, dependable and reliable, quick to listen, slow to anger, and guides his daily life with a commanding sense of duty, honor and integrity to his family, his nation and his Creator.

For all these reasons, Citizen Banister has become a target.

Early in 1999, as a Special Agent of our servant government’s principal tax collector, Citizen Banister quietly and professionally asked his superiors at the IRS legitimate questions about legal research documenting an apparent conflict between what the Constitution and the law actually authorized him to perform on the job versus what his superiors at the IRS were requiring him to do. Instead of answering Banister’s questions the government punished Banister for asking the questions, by forcing Banister out of government service. Since that day, Citizen Banister has continued to advocate for the truth and press the servant government for answers to his questions.

For all these reasons, Citizen Banister has become a target of the servant government, which seeks to blemish and impeach Banister’s sterling professional record and unassailable character in the only way it can. Rather than answer Banister’s questions, the government has sought to silence Banister by manufacturing a criminal charge that would put Citizen Banister behind bars, far from the public’s view and earshot.

Force, rather than truth appears to be the servant government’s weapon of choice when it is under fire for its acts outside the boundaries drawn around its power by the Constitution -- and is being held accountable by ordinary, non-aligned citizens such as Citizen Banister.

Think about the following photograph. It is evident that Banister comes from good stock and a long family line of dedicated public servants. What we also see is what the servant government fears most --- one of its own placing his moral ethics and loyalties to duty, country and the Constitution, ahead of his job and ahead of his loyalty to the government – and then loudly defending those profound and difficult choices in the forum of public opinion.

In order from left to right,
Jeff Banister (Police Officer),
John Banister (Police Sgt.),

Gary Banister (Police Officer Ret.),
Joe Banister (Former IRS Special Agent),
and Jim Banister (Fire Captain).

Click Here for a larger version

As his court battle looms near, Citizen Banister recently wrote a letter to his son Ryan’s middle school classmates. The letter has also been delivered to certain People in the neighborhood where Banister lives and was raised – people who have known Joe Banister for a long time. Joe authorized us to publish that letter as part of this update. We do so here. We urge our readers to read the letter, which provides more insight into Citizen Banister.  Click here for Banister’s letter.

Citizen Banister needs your help. He has placed his livelihood, his family and his liberty at direct risk to speak in defense of the truth we all seek. He has risked far more to expose the income tax fraud than many that will read this article would dare.

Without doubt, there are great financial costs in adequately defending against the attacks of a government intent on silencing the voices of dissent. Our government is dragging Banister through one administrative and judicial proceeding after another to break him – and still, he refuses to relent.

This Foundation has enjoyed an extraordinary and close relationship with Citizen Banister since we first learned of his story in 1999. Banister’s courageous and compelling saga, was in fact, the impetus that first caused this Foundation to investigate, and then publicly confront our government, regarding the income tax fraud.

For this, we all owe Citizen Banister strong measures of our thanks, and our help.

1600 Pins

Next Tuesday we will receive 1600 special pins we have ordered from a manufacturer in Florida. A likeness of the pin is shown here. The pin is about the size of a quarter.

These pins, when worn by People, will signify that the wearer is a supporter of the Constitution and the citizens, particularly Joseph Banister and the Plaintiffs in the Right To Petition lawsuit, who are defending the Constitution and Bill of Rights against domestic enemies, including an overreaching servant government.

We will send a pin to each person who donates $100.
Click here to obtain your pin.

You can help us raise the $150,000 needed for our two projects by being one of the initial 1600 people who will proudly wear one of these pins.

One-third of the money to come from this fund-raising program will go to Citizen Banister and his family.

Article Related Links

 Click here for Banister’s letter.

Click here to obtain your pin.

Support the Foundation & Joe Banister further with your
generous support
of a one-time or monthly subscription donation.

Click Here for a larger version of the Banister family photo

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