Edgar County Watchdogs
FIRST AID KIT FOR ELECTED OFFICIALS-
How to combat an antigovernment group
FIRST AID KIT FOR ELECTED OFFICIALS-
How to combat an antigovernment group
There's much to see here. So, take your time, look around.
We assume that you found this page because you are researching this group for either issues in your city or to attend a training. We are sure you have questions as to if this group is legitimate or a problem. We understand posting this information is to acknowledge both of those questions and compile answers to these questions from across the state. This page is to make the state aware of the behavior of this group and for the best interest of the government, to shed light on a situation costing tax payers money.
The owners. Kirk Allen and John Kraft run a website. They are from Kansas and Paris, IL. We see no credentials for media on their site or registration with journalists locally, nor any awards. While they claim their are journalists, recent court filing state they write as parody. Their IRS 502c4 status is not a status for journalists.
Organizations organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, testing for public safety, literary, educational, or other specified purposes and that meet certain other requirements are tax exempt under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3).
Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(4) provides for the exemption of two very different types of organizations with their own distinct qualification requirements. C4 status means reporting of donations. There are no reported donations. There are normal 501C4s:
Homeowners associations and volunteer fire companies may be recognized as exempt as social welfare organizations if they meet the requirements for exemption. Organizations that engage in substantial lobbying activities sometimes also are classified as social welfare organizations.
It does not seem to meet this criteria. Organizations organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, testing for public safety, literary, educational, or other specified purposes and that meet certain other requirements are tax exempt under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3).
The FEC (Federal Election Commission) does not have them registered as a 501C3 political organization.
Edgar county Watchdogs state they are journalists who use parody to bring up government issues. They also state they are true watchdogs and experts in that. They support far right candidates by attacking the candidates competition to alter elections. We are unsure if they are journalists (Parody), watchdogs (for vexatious litigation), or just a political action committee. Their IRS status is inaccurate and therefore misleading as to their true intent.
One way is that people stumble on their site and think they are legitimate watchdogs that can help in a community. Another is by having "How to be a watchdog" seminars in that town. The third is to get involved with people running elections.
We are alleging that they are really an antigovernmental group, who keeps growing and targeting far right-wing extremists to join their cause so they can create the insurgency needed, and requests needed, for ECW to get their hands on all government documents to sue. Their acts have included interfering in interstate commerce, elections, participating in insurgency, bullying, harassment, and fake news.
They will stop at nothing to get their hands on documents, including weaponizing the FOIA laws, getting their accountant in as auditors, getting people elected who will leak info to them. and defaming elected official under secrecy of anti-SLAPP laws so that elected officials cannot protect themselves.
We believe that they use these documents to commit fraud upon the courts as vexatious litigators, rotating 3 attorneys and their group to cover their tracks as serial suers in order to profit of large taxpayer funds in both settlements and shakedowns.
•They are heavily involved in getting extremists into elected office so they can get open access to docs unredacted and confidential, which harms our government and protections of the people, hence the term anti-government.
If you are an elected official, you will could lose your reputation, be accused of false things, be doxed, asked to resign and pressure put on family, friends and children Most elected officials are in office to do good deeds but when it impacts their families and other jobs they will quit. ECW plans on this model.
If you are a taxpayers, realize that once your town is visited by them, it is going to cost possibly over a million in legal alone, an the damage inflicted on the local government bodies is like a grenade, destroying the ability to function as a board, excessive back end work, and more.
The truth is that we have found in MOST cases, that they are NOT exposing any bad politician. We have found that they are taking advantage of gaps or opportunities to get rich.
For example, in September 2021 Wilmington, IL the supervisor leaves his job. They find out and immediately go in and request dozens of "fishing expedition" FOIA's, knowing they have not replaced his position yet and there is nobody left to process the sheer number of FOIA requests. Fishing is not allowed in a FOIA request, nor is excessive requests. First, the FOIA requests are excessive and extreme. Second, nobody did anything wrong to be attacked. Third, this is a blatant attempt to win tax payer money by weaponizing the FOIA act and process, thus harming our rights as citizens for future protections of FOIA laws. Then it becomes more apparent that they do not go to the State's public access counselor to complain first, like everyone else has to. They file in court the first day a FOIA is late.
Due to this example, and the same thing happening with the IL Attny General's office when they were hacked and systems shut down, it becomes important to recognize people who try to take advantage of your tax dollars. Regardless what they claim happens in your city, it is parody and the end goal is lawsuits.
We have, and will continue to report this, to all official bodies possible and to the public and elected officials across the state.
Scams involving demanding audits, then their accountant and her friends put in bids. Removal of documents then a request for them (as they know you will have lost it and they can sue). They participated in zoom bombings, claiming they couldn't hear the meetings over their guys chinese music, and then sued. They have rushed podiums in anger, swinging arms at elected officials talking. They bring others there to meetings to cause issues. They are constantly trying to find reasons to stop the meetings. They are not aware of ACTUAL laws and still write stories stating laws that were broken, with no judge or jury to rule on it. (In fact none are ever accurate once in court). Their attorney Hanlon has been reported for Practicing law without a license in Florida just to harass a reporter. They drove out to Florida and stood o her sidewalk to take pictures of her house, then posted it in a doxing story about her. There is too much to share!
Who has been a part of this group?
See what lawyer's are saying and maybe it can help your case too!
Too see what they do about FOIA requests, click here.
Did they interfere in your local election?
See some shared stories.
This area is to post fact check information on their articles.
Since 1967, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) has provided the public the right to request access to records from any federal agency. It is often described as the law that keeps citizens in the know about their government. When someone requests large amounts of documents, intending to sue the government for fining a needle in a haystack, that is called "fishing". This is an abuse to the laws put in place that could jeopardize the future protections of other citizens.
The clear answer is NO. They lack credibility, their stories are biased, they attack people. and they call themselves reporters. The IRS status is not Reporter status.
They do this so that they can get access to more documents then a typical person can.
However, if you see the number of those documents ACTUALLY used in stories, it is minimal to the thousands of FOIA requests sent.
Do you know of any location in need of help? Let us know!
Have they written stories about you?
Do they attend meetings or submit large quantities of FOIA's? Contact us and we can see if you qualify.
The information on this page was donated by many people. While we wait for the law to look into these allegations and take the proper action, this site is being run by volunteers to prevent any other damages to our Government and the taxpayers. We believe all the information on this site is accurate, truthful, and we have evidence to prove each case mentioned. While we say we are not attorneys nor practice law to determine each law being broken, we have consulted a dozen attorneys cross the state and that includes the IL Attorney General, many State's attorneys, and more. We will update as often as possible.