"America: From Freedom to Fascism"
Transcription of Audio Interview, May 13, 2006
JIM: Well there are a few silent voices in the land that are warning its citizens of the future direction this country is embarking on. Some feel that the American Republic like the Roman Republic is coming to an end. The country is dangerously veering toward fascism. Joining me and other voices is Aaron Russo. Aaron's work has won numerous gold records, platinum records, an Emmy, a Tony, and six academy award nominations. His films have also received seven golden globe nominations and actually won three golden globes. Aaron has a new film coming out in July, From Freedom to Fascism. Aaron, what prompted you to make this film?
AARON RUSSO: What prompted me to make the movie is the fact that America is sliding head long into totalitarianism, into fascism. And I define fascism as a combination of big government and big corporations working together to stifle the people. And that was Mussolini's definition of fascism, he called it corporatism. And that's what's happening here in America, we are losing our freedoms, we are losing our rights. And I personally refuse to live that way. And having been a film maker, and an accomplished film maker, and I'm not boasting when I say that, I know how to make a movie. And also having a lot of political knowledge, I decided to put the two together and make a movie to alert America to what was happening, because the media, the big media doesn't tell us. I mean the only way you get any information at all is through the internet. Everything else on regular television or news papers is pretty much, you know, pablum. And so I decided someone had to make a movie and I felt I was probably the best one equipped to do that who had an understanding of both the political situation in the country and knew how to make a movie. So I made the movie because there was no other choice. I mean, we have to stop what is happening in this country. And we have to reach out to people who don't know what is happening, people who aren't on the internet. So I had to make a movie that everybody could understand. And so I made the movie because it was a necessary, necessary thing to get done. And to wake people up and to stand together and get millions of people to stand up and say: "I'm not going to take this anymore, I'm not going to allow this happen." And to have a place where we can all gel. And that's why I made the movie.
JIM: When you went to make this film, you financed this totally out of your own funds. Did you approach the major Hollywood production companies: Warner, MGM, Fox? Did you approach any of the big studios?
AARON: Well I didn't approach them to make the movie, no. I did that on my own 'cause I didn't want any interference in the way I made the movie. I knew what I wanted to make. At some point I knew what I wanted to make. When I first started out the picture was a little bit different in my mind than it turned out to be. But, to answer your question, no I didn't approach them at the beginning, because I didn't want any interference in what I wanted to do. I have approached them since I've finished the movie, to get it distributed. And although everybody agrees the picture's a great movie, and it's getting standing ovations, and we're getting you know lines around the block around the country, pretty much, to see the movie, when we have a pre-screening of it. They won't touch the movie. And they're afraid of it. And they all know it's a good movie, but no one, no one will touch it. Any of the big guys won't touch it. And so we now made a distribution arrangement with a smaller studio, they're distributing the movie. It will be coming out late in July, and it's gonna be, it feels like it's gonna be a huge hit. And, like I said, the response has really been overwhelming, bigger than any movie I've ever made, and I've made some pretty big ones. And I've never seen a reaction to a film like this. It feels as if, we're touching a nerve. You know? And I get this sense, that people across this country are really unhappy. And it's not just a few people, it's the majority of people. Something's changing in America, the mindset is changed here. I heard a song the other day, actually a couple months ago called: "There's something in the air, but it's not on the air waves." And that about describes what's happening in America today. There's a tremendous sense of dissatisfaction. Everybody feels that things that are happening here are fraudulent. Nobody trusts anything anymore. There's a general level of dissatisfaction here. And the movie is touching that nerve. And telling people why its happened, how its happened, and how to fix it. And how to get our country back, and take the country back from the people that are controlling it. That have destroyed our Constitution, our Bill of Rights, you know, have destroyed sound money, have just made America into a fraudulent country that has lost the ideals that this country was founded on. And so, the movie is touching that nerve and that chord, and that is why none of the big movie studios will distribute it. And that's why we're doing this another way. And I'm hoping that people who are listening to this interview, will go to my website. You know, FreedomtoFascism.com, and go on the site and see some of the trailers of the movie, and join up, sign up on the site so we can reach you when the time comes to take action. Cause one of the things we're gonna do is besides the movie just being out there and educating people to what's going on we want to create a website where people can all join together from all sides: Democrats, Republicans, Independents, third parties. It doesn't matter. We want to stop the polarization of America. And have a place where all people from all walks of life can sign up and say: "We want to stop what's happening in America, and do whether it's, you know, boycotts, marches, whatever it takes to have civil disobedience in this country, to get our country back." And we need millions of people joining up. And we're well on our way. We are doing fantastic right now.
JIM: Aaron, what was it that the studios were afraid of? Were they afraid of government audits if they would have distributed this film? I mean, what was preventing them?
AARON: It's hard for me to sit in their minds and you know, and say exactly, but I know they were totally afraid of the IRS. You know, because the movie does deal with that issue. When I started the movie, the movie was initially called: "April 15th, the Real April Fools Day." And it was a documentary about the IRS. But as I started making the movie, I began to realize that the IRS is just a symptom, of a bigger problem of the police state in America. So while we deal with the IRS--and I interview an ex-IRS commissioner, IRS agents, you know, scholars and authors--the movie is not about taxes per se, even though it deals with the tax issue. It's about the police state in America and how the IRS is a symptom of a bigger problem. Even though they are a problem in and of themselves. They're part of a much bigger problem. And the problem ties into the Federal Reserve System. There's the IRS, it's the police state, it's the one-world government they're trying to organize, the New World Order you can call it as George Bush calls it, and deals with all those issues. And it deals with how much control the bankers have of our government. And because they can issue fiat currency out of thin air. And because they can issue that fiat currency, they own whatever they want to own. They can control everything. You know, as Rothschild said: "He who makes the money makes the rules." And that's basically it, and as Josiah Stamp said, who was the ex-Bank of England, head of the Bank of England said you know: "The bankers own the earth. If you took the earth away from them, but allowed them to still create money, they would own the earth again, with one flick of the pen." They could just make whatever money they want to buy it back again. And so, having these private bankers making money, and issuing the money for America, is a giant mistake. Because it's taking the government away from the people, and putting it into the hands of the monied interests. And they don't have the same objectives and the same point of view that the ordinary American does. About freedom of the individual. Freedom of the individual, and liberty, is what I'm all about. And so I'm fighting for that. I'm fighting so that Americans can be free and that you have the right to be whoever you choose to be in your life. And you don't have to follow all these rules and regulations that governors are enforcing on everybody. And innocent people going to jail. And so that's the intent of the movie, that's the point of view of the movie. And like I say, people are truly responding in a big big way. When you see my interview with the IRS commissioner, you're gonna go crazy. It's unbelievable what he says on camera, I mean, it's just amazing.
JIM: Just let me step in there, because one of the things that I want to point out that you are doing in this film, and for anybody listening, this really isn't a partisan issue is it. Because, Regan and Bush, we saw forfeiture powers to expand and seize property with little due process. Under Clinton there was Waco, Ruby Ridge, Elian Gonzales, eminent domain.
JIM: And echelon. And then under Bush, the second Bush, we've had to sacrifice our rights to save freedom, and torture is a good idea. Anyone can be declared an enemy of the state.
AARON: That's right. And they can hold you in jail without charges for life. And this has to stop. It's so absurd what's happening in this country. It's so over the top. You know? And the fact that the media is allowing this to happen. They are so much a part of what's happening in this country. And that's why it's fascism. Cause it's the big corporations and the big government working together to suppress the people. That's what has happened here. And we have to stop it. And the only way to stop it is with numbers. Either the bankers are gonna control the government because they can make money, or the people are going to control the government because they have the numbers. We have the numbers at large. So, either we use our numbers and take control again, or the bankers are gonna do it cause they can make the money. And the Congress has the legal authority to shut down the Federal Reserve System. They can do that if they choose to. And if we have enough numbers of people, to stand up and say: "I want to shut down the Federal Reserve System." We're gonna get it done, but it takes a lot of people to stand up and say it.
JIM: You know, Aaron, one of the sad things that I've seen, is ever since backing our currency with gold and sound money, you know I can remember growing up, I came from a large family of ten kids, my dad was a cabinet-maker, and he supported the family. My mom stayed at home. If you take the average American today, it takes both the husband and wife working, and soon maybe the kids will have to work to pay the bills. And the average American out there doesn't understand what is happening to the purchasing value of their dollar. They see that day-to-day, food is costing them more, energy is costing them more, it takes two to support the family now. And you take a look at the purchasing value of the dollar, and yet we have these imbeciles on TV, that come on and talk about the core rate of inflation being less than two percent. [laughter] I mean the average..
AARON: [laughter] We do deal with that in the movie by the way. It's such alie. I mean, these people lie through their teeth. They don't have a sense of decency about themselves. That's the problem. They're thieves, they're con-jobs. Our congress doesn't have honest people in it, except one that I know of, Ron Paul. And that's what we're dealing with. We're dealing with thieves and liars and no-goods. And they're scoundrels. The people in Congress are scoundrels. They are. And they are destroying the American public. And the American civilization. And it has to be stopped. And I'm not, obviously, I'm not mincing my words. But that's the truth. That's what's happening here.
JIM: You know, the good thing about someone like yourself making this film, is this story-- about the IRS, about what's happening to the Constitution, about the Federal Reserve, inflation, these kind of things--the average American as you said, in some of your screenings you are getting standing ovations. They know, something like that song you were talking about. There's something in the air but they can't quite put their finger on it. They know that things aren't right. And I think that's what people are sensing right now.
AARON: Yes they are. That song was called: "There's Something in the Air, but it's Not on Airwaves." And that says it very, very well. They know there's something wrong, they sniff it, they smell it. And a lot of people just think it's George Bush. They don't understand that it's not just George Bush. Bill Clinton was the same thing. This whole thing about Democrats and Republicans, and the polarization has to come to a stop. I say in the movie: "It's time to stop being a good Democrat, it's time to stop being a good Republican, and it's time to start being a good American." And that's what it's about. It's about being American, and standing up for the principles that America was founded on. And standing up for it. And not just saying oh there's something wrong in America. And moan and groan but do nothing about it. I'm sick of that. People have to stand up, they have to take part, they have to take action. For otherwise, you know, you deserve what you're gonna get. But we can stop it, we really can stop it. It's in our power to stop it. If people just get off their butts and do something, you know. So I'm giving the opportunity to do something. Now go to the website, FreedomtoFascism.com. Sign up. Let us email you what actions we're gonna take. So sign up and make a donation to help the film get distributed. We need money. I pretty much done this all myself. I put in two years of hard work. I put up the funding to do this movie. You know we're taking the movie to Cannes next week. I think on the 22nd. And we're gonna bring the movie back here to go into theatres now. But if you want to spread this movie into every nook and cranny. Into every city and town across America, so everybody can see it, make a donation. Don't just sit back and do nothing. Come help us get the movie distributed. Help us buy the television ads we need, and the newspaper and the radio ads. Step up. Do something. A lot of people who are listening to this show, have some money. Write a check. Go to the website and write a check. Or go to the website and go to Paypal. And make a major donation. We need money. And here is an opportunity, this is the best tool we've ever had, to bring freedom to this country. I promise you. The movie is a knock out. And I am so proud of it. It's better than anything I've ever done. People responding that way. And it is just really working. But let me tell you what we have the IRS commissioner saying in this film on tape. It's in the movie. I started out making this movie to discover whether or not there was any law that requires people to pay an income tax, cause I'd been hearing for years that there is no law. But I sort of poopooed it. Right? So I decided to investigate it. And there was this organization called "We the People" that was gonna serve a lawsuit on the IRS, to have the IRS show them the law. Cause the IRS has refused to show them the law. And so I thought that was an interesting topic. You know, why won't the IRS show the law? And I assumed they could. And so, as I started getting into this, I went down to Washington, and shot the march they had on the IRS. I saw them serve the subpoena on the IRS. I interviewed IRS agents. I interviewed Dr. Riviera. I interviewed many many people, who have, sort of, a comprehensive knowledge of the income tax. And so I finally went, and after I interviewed them, I interviewed the IRS commissioner. And what I discovered before I interviewed him, was that in 1913, they passed the 16th Amendment, which in actuality was not even ratified by the states like it's supposed to be. But put that aside for a second. Let's assume it was ratified properly. And that happened in 1913. And the IRS says, and they say it in my film as well, that it was the 16th Amendment that grants them the authority to impose this tax on the people of labor. That's their authorization, the 16th Amendment. I said: "OK." But then in 1916 through 1923, there were eight Supreme Court decisions that said: "The 16th Amendment did not give that power to the government to do that, to tax the labor of the people." Eight Supreme Court decisions say that. So, in 1917 the IRS had to stop taxing the labor of the people, even though they brought it back later. Now, when I interviewed the IRS commissioner, and we finally got to the point where I said to him: "Well, how come all these Supreme Court decisions say that the 16th Amendment that you are relying on as authorization, did not give you authorization? They all say that the 16th Amendment gave the government gave you no new taxing power. And if you weren't taxable before the 16th Amendment, you weren't taxable after the 16th Amendment." That was in Tech vs. Lowe. And you know what the IRS commissioner, the former commissioner said to me? He said: "Supreme Court decisions are inapplicable to the IRS." OK?
JIM: They're above the law?
AARON: Exactly. Exactly. And that's how they're getting away with it. He had no answer. I pinned him into the corner. And he had no where to go but to say that. Ya see? So, in reality, it doesn't matter, I don't care what the tax code says. I don't get into the tax code. The tax code to me is irrelevant when it comes to taxing your labor. Because the Supreme Court says they can't. So whatever it says, I don't care what it says. The IRS is not above the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court trumps the IRS. And that's what the movie proves, that there is no law, because the Supreme Court says they can't do it. So, when I realized all this, I saw where the IRS weakness was. And so I started getting into some of these court decisions. Because people do go to jail for not paying it. And even though some people do get away with it. They win in court. You know, I have a number of cases in the movie, where people actually go to court and win because the IRS can't show the statute. They can't show it because it doesn't exist. And so, I also show cases where people have lost. And so I wanted to know why people lose if there is no law requiring them to do it. So, in my investigation of the courts, I have this court case with this gentleman named Irwin Schiff, who is really one of the icons of the tax movement, you know. The tax honesty movement. And Irwin Schiff, they put him on criminal charges, he's in the court, trying to explain to the jury that there is no law that requires him to pay this. And you know what the judge said?
JIM: What's that?
AARON: And here's the payoff. The judge said to Irwin Schiff as he's trying to explain to the jury, the judge, and this is a quote, exactly out of the transcripts, the manuscripts, the judge said: "I will not allow the law in my court room. "
JIM: Not allow the law in my court room?
AARON: Exactly: "I will not allow the law in my courtroom, I will instruct the jury as to what the law is." Ok?
JIM: That's almost, your moving towards fascism just in that statement.
AARON: Exactly. That's the point. And then he said: "But the Supreme Court said..." "Irrelevant, denied. I don't care what the supreme court said. Irrelevant, denied." And that's why people lose in court. Because the judges are in cahoots with the IRS. And so, you can go to jail for not paying it. And I don't tell people not to pay by the way, by the way. I want you to understand. My point of view is, I don't care if you pay taxes or not. It's no skin off my back, right, what you do. But I do care, that people are being put in jail for not paying the taxes, when there is no law that allows them to. And that's a part of the police state. That's part of the force. The IRS in my opinion is no different than a criminal protection racket, using force to take your money and not law.
JIM: You also get into the Federal Reserve and then also with the Patriot Act, some of the ways that government can now come in, and let's say they don't like what you and I are saying, we could become enemies of the state and be thrown in jail.
AARON: Absolutely. The government today has the ability to call you a terrorist, there's no definition of the word terrorism, and say you're a terrorist or you're against the state, or whatever. And they can throw you in jail for life without charges. Do you want to live in that kind of a country. I don't. I don't. And I refuse to.
JIM: You know, Aaron, one of the things that you get into these issues, and anybody that's going to watch some of the trailers on your website, which is at FreedomtoFascism.com, as they see some of the statements, see some of the officials, see some of the evidence, this is something that you are not going to see in the newspaper, you're not gonna see on TV. In fact, what we portray as news today, I'm sorry, I have sympathy for Natalie Holloway's family, but you know, for the last six-eight months, so many things are happening in this country, and our new is, we're going off on cruise ships. People being thrown off. I mean and that's tragic, but we're not telling people what's happening with their freedoms. Their very freedoms are being taken away, while they're being entertained with nightly television.
AARON: Exactly. They're not giving you the big picture. They don't want you to understand what the big picture is. They'll talk about the war somewhat you know, 'cause everybody knows what's going on. They'll talk about Natalie Holloway. I'm sorry for what happened to her. You know it's a tragic thing. But the bigger tragedy is what's happening to America as a nation. And all the people here that are being enslaved. And not even realizing it. I'm going to tell you an interesting story because a lot of people who don't believe that there's really a plan to have a New World Order and a one-world government. And I do believe that is the fact, that there is a plan. And that there are people behind that. And I know that for a fact. It's not that I just believe it, I know it. And I know that...I used to be friends with one of the Rockefeller family. And we used to discuss all these things about putting RFID chips into people. You know, radio frequency identification chips into people. It's a homing device that they want to implant. By May 2008 everybody has to carry a national ID card. Ok, that will also have an RFID chip attached to it. And, you know it's no different than what we used to fight and say: "Germany was wrong." You know that you have to stop at checkpoints, and show who you are. And, you know in America that was never considered as a possibility. Even your Social Security Card, if you look at your Social Security Card, what it used to say on it was: "Not to be used for identification." Right on the card. It doesn't say that anymore. When they first passed that law, the Social Security law, it said on the, 'cause they couldn't have passed it otherwise, but little by little, like the old frog story, they're takin' away a little bit at a time so you don't notice. And so what's happening in America is that, they want to implant people with chips, and it's starting to happen now. People are starting to get implanted right now with RFID chips. In certain jobs, if you want to keep your job, you have to have a chip. Everybody's gonna have to carry an ID card, and if you don't have the ID card you can't board a plane. You can't board an Amtrak train. You can't bank in a major center bank. And you can't walk into a federal building. And what I say in the movie is: "Great. Nobody should accept the ID card. And if nobody takes it, and you can't board a plane without it, then let the airlines go bankrupt. We'll show them whose in charge. You can't bank in big money center bank? Great. Bank in a small bank, in a community bank." If you can't walk into a federal building, I consider that a blessing. You know, I don't need to walk into a federal building. You know? And the point is, is that people have to recognise, that this is law, this is signed into law, this is happening now. And, an interesting story, so you can see how devious these people are who are behind all this, what my friend said to me: "Aaron, what do you think women's lib was about?" And women's lib, I said: "I think that was about women having equal pay with men and having a right to work. You know, just like that won the right to vote. " And he says to me: "You know, you're an idiot." And this is the Rockafella fella. The Rockafella fella. Hey that's a good line. So this is the Rockafella fella, and he said: "Your an idiot Aaron. Don't you know what it was really about? " I said: "What? Tell me." "Aaron, we got the press, and the television, the magazines to push women's lib as this really noble-noble things, this noble experiment to where womens right to work and equal pay. It was about getting women into the taxing system so we could tax half the population that we couldn't tax before. And secondarily, it was about getting the kids into school at an early age, 'cause then we control their minds. We could teach them how to think. We're not gonna teach them the Constitution. We're gonna teach them how to think, to obey authority." And when he said that to me, I just went: "Oh, my God." 'Cause that never occurred to me before. And then I started thinking about that, and I said, that's why you have McDonald's, and Burger Kings today, and all these fast food outlets. That's why people can't live anymore. They're destroying the value of the dollar. Now you have all these fast food places. Kids are getting type two diabetes. You know, 'cause there's no more home cooked meals. No more eating good food. You have all these modified genetically engineered foods that they're pushing. And you're not even allowed to know which foods are genetically modified anymore. Everything is being taken away. What made America a great nation, and freedom of the individual, is gone. It's gone, and we have to get it back. And I want to organize people to get it back. So get on the website and join us. Come on guys. You want to be free? Take some action. And once you join up, if you want to make a donation, that would really be great.
JIM: You know, a lot of this stuff that you cover in your film is not gonna be covered in nightly television, as I said before, or in the newspapers on a daily basis. What do you hope to accomplish with this film in the very end? In other words, where does the torch get passed or carried after this film? What happens?
AARON: Well, I'm planning on putting together a giant political organization that's not polarized, that's not Republican or Democrat, but Americans who want to change the way that things are workin' in this country. And once the film does its job, and it plays across this country, and people join up, we're gonna be a political force to deal with. And that's what I want to happen. I want to create a new political energy in this country that stands for freedom.
JIM: Well Aaron, why don't you give out your website, and tell people what they're going to find there.
AARON: Website is http://www.FreedomtoFascism.com, you'll go there, you'll see many trailers of the movie. About five of them I believe we now have up there. You'll see ecards that you can send around. Really nice pieces of art you can email to each other. You're gonna see news stories up there that we are putting up there on a daily basis now. You're gonna see a place for comment and discussions, we're gonna have blogs up there. It's gonna be a very interactive website. You're gonna see a place where you can sign up and put your name down, so we can send email blasts out to everybody who signs up, so we can take action, all at one time, and have a means of reaching everybody. And we want to be a very interactive website, that becomes a political force in this country for people who believe in the message of the movie. That's what we want to do. We want people who believe in freedom of the individual, who're sick and tired of what's happening to this country, to stand up and say: "I'm not gonna take it anymore. We want a free country. We want freedom of the person, to be sovereign individuals again. To live their lives as they choose. And recognizing the fact that each one of us own our own life, and we are free to do with it as we wish. As long as we don't commit violence, theft, or fraud against another human being."
JIM: Alright Aaron, one more time, give out your website please.
AARON: www.FreedomtoFascism.com, make a difference in this world. Let's stand up and get our country back and make America the place it once was; a beacon of light for freedom all over this world. Let's stop what's happening in this country.
JIM: Alright, well Aaron, I want to thank you for joining us and other voices. And the film will be coming out in July, and Aaron keep us posted, and of course if you go to the website people can find out the movie theatres.
AARON: There'll be schedules up there, there'll be everything, guys, you know? And remember, gold is real money, silver is money, fiat paper is not money. Make that clear to everybody you know. And let's get back to a real money standard in this country that has a foundation and is substantial instead of the depreciating asset of the paper dollar that we're stuck with today. Because government makes laws that we have to use it. Let's get back to a gold and silver backing and let's get a real foundation of a money system back here again. And let's shut down the Federal Reserve System, because it's not the way, the Federal Reserve System is one of the major planks of the Communist Manifesto. The central bank is a major plank of the Communist Manifesto and so is a graduated income tax. Those two things, that came to America in 1913, are both from the Communist Manifesto. And when I hear people saying that America is a capitalist nation and a capitalist country, it makes me laugh, because a capitalist country would not have a central bank, you know, that decides everything for us. Central planning is not a capitalistic nation. So that's all I have to say, everybody, please join on. Come with us, and let's get America back. And God bless you. Thank you for having me on the show.
JIM: Aaron, you're a great American. Thanks for joining us on the program. All the best. And we'll be sure to get the information out, when the film comes to theaters in July.
AARON: God bless you all. And if you have some money and if you're a big ma'ka, help us make this movie a big success. Help us distribute it and buy the TV ads that we need. Step up to the plate guys. Please. Thank you very much.
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