Line in the Sand

Kent Dahlgren
6 min readSep 4, 2023


There’s a persistent belief that “the authorities” won’t spy on or harass you unless you’re guilty.

Frame capture from video taken downtown Austin 18 May, 2020 at precisely 2:14 local time as APD looks on

Well, I’ve learned otherwise, and I’ll state up-front that I’ve never been arrested, so my experiences in this regard have been a real eye-opener, because I’ve been led to believe that the good guys are the good ones.

Now I’m not so sure that’s always true. 🤔

A good part of why I shot the video (in 2020) was because Barrett and I were being shadowed by APD at the time, and we had to keep moving from location to location.

Barrett and I met in person a few times, and in discussions of various topics inclusive to his vision for Pursuance, we settled upon a notion of how to relaunch the Project PM wiki, which the FBI had shut down a decade hence after declaring it a “criminal organization.”

In fact, the Project PM wiki was (and is) filled with publicly-available information regarding how federal authorities (including the FBI) makes use of private corporate security to harass and intimidate journalists, whistleblowers, and sometimes just normal innocent citizens.

Officially the FBI isn’t supposed to harass people on arbitrary terms, and the COINTELPRO program was shut down because it was declared unconstitutional.

But I’ve learned how there’s a healthy ecosystem of aspiring collaborators who are more than willing to harass people (“trolling”) with hopes they can get some fed support (and funding).

Rewinding a decade or so….

For years I carried a copy of this wiki on a USB, sometimes in my pocket, but most times safely on my desk within R&D at places like Tripwire as the FBI conducted their man hunt, seeking to find and destroy all copies.

At the time I was laying real low, because there was some contention about how the wiki contained a link to some content on Wikileaks, and how that content had been stolen from private intelligence firm Stratfor, which is headquartered here in Austin.

Indeed, that info HAD been stolen, and you can view their emails within the Global Intelligence Files on Wikileaks, including an email my former boss sent as an introduction to Stratfor.

But aside from a link to the Wikileaks content, the stolen content itself was not in the Project PM wiki, which represents a nuance the DOJ didn’t care to consider in their campaign to shut the whole thing down.

That era was harrowing; the Anonymous brand was blowing up, and the whole scene stunk of a fed trap, so myself and others went dark as the feds conducted their manhunt.

Barrett was eventually sentenced to 63 months in federal prison for linking to the hacked materials, and at the present he’s in the UK seeking political asylum.

I can’t speak for Barrett, of course, but I’ve noticed how a number of our friends and colleagues have found themselves deceased in the past few years, including Kevin M. Gallagher.

Kevin’s story was of keen interest because I got to witness admitted FBI informants harass a person until they die, and the evidence of said harassment is still hosted on a guy’s Dropbox archive, because he considers it another trophy (the same informant claims to have harassed Andrew Breitbart until he died).

This harassment campaign began in earnest as Barrett announced the intention to relaunch the Project PM wiki, as well as launch two additional projects (both named in honor of murdered journalist Michael Hastings, and activist Aaron Swartz).

We launched the wiki, and then all hell broke loose, with much of the harassment being levied against the people historically known to be associated with Barrett, as well as Barrett himself.

For a while I was overlooked, although to this day I’m still the only person with “keys” to the Project PM wiki, and eventually I also found myself in the crosshairs of orchestrated harassment.

And man, being in the hot crosshairs of an orchestrated harassment campaign is a wild adventure.

That “wild adventure” came to an immediate stop when both of the informant’s favorite attorneys died within a month or so of one another, one of them stabbed to death.

So that’s fucking interesting…🤔

Another death is a guy named Val Broeksmit, whose father used to work at Deutsche Bank and committed suicide after managing Trump’s finances. Val ended up with his dad’s emails, and he aspired to help the FBI, or something.

I suspect this is why two guys wound up on my doorstep, claiming to be FBI (but I’ve since learned that local cops can be ordained into the Joint Terrorism Task Force, which gives them permission to introduce themselves as FBI).

They were holding a manila folder of my social media posts, and in particular wanted to know what I knew about certain Signal chat groups. Their visit happens in the middle of this podcast.

In terms of timeline, this occurred a couple weeks after Facebook permanently deleted my original Facebook profile.

Anyway: Val.

Val aspired to position himself favorably vis-à-vis his dad’s emails.

What ACTUALLY ended up happening was that Val recorded himself seeking to trade info on us (including me) in exchange for assistance from the FBI on some child welfare issue.

Some of that audio can be heard in this video:

And then Val was found dead at a public school in Los Angeles, cause of death: blunt trauma (he was beat to death), and the site of his body was pressure washed, there’s apparently no video footage of the site, and the whole affair was declared not suspicious.

Uh….that’s a lot of deaths, y’all, and in the mix, a whole lot of shady fucken bullshit, and for what?

Barrett has chosen to step away from these endeavors, I suspect because he’s tired of watching people die on his watch, and like I said: he’s got reason to believe his life is at risk in the US, which is why he’s seeking asylum in the UK,

And man, you know what?

It would be one thing if I could put my finger on some crime we (or any of these guys) are committing, but there’s no crime.

And worse, there’s no official accusation, no nothing. Just ongoing harassment.

And all I see is journalism, and man, that’s a dangerous endeavor in this country, and I think I know why.

In 2013 a journalist named Michael Hastings died in a really bizarre auto accident that you can watch here:

Hastings had told friends he was working on a project that was likely a follow-up to the work which led to the firing of U.S. General Stanley McChrystal.

Anyway, Hastings died, and I suspect that’s why journalists are terrified to do journalism in this country.

And you know what? This is a small world, because Hastings is still pretty closely tied to current events, as current as last week.

General McChrystal’s Chief Intel officer was Michael Flynn, and Flynn was responsible for managing the same Joseph Biggs that was just sentenced to 17 years in prison for his role in 6 Jan.

Oh yeah, the same Joseph Biggs was formally trained in psychological operations.

And back in 2013, Michael Hastings sent an email in the hours before his death, letting them know that the FBI was interviewing people about his work.

He BCC’d the same Joseph Biggs.

And that’s why I am the only person who has keys to the Project PM wiki, and why I run both Project Hastings and Project Swartz.

I wouldn’t claim that I’m doing a particularly great job at running those projects, but that’s sort of besides the point. For me, it’s kind of a line in the sand thing, you know?

What would you do if you came to realize that bad shit is going on in your own country? Would you bury your head? Or would you take a stand?

In each and every other circumstance the feds can pick a person from the crowd and throw them down the stairs, and people are quick to say “well, they are dope fiends” or whatever.

Documentary filmmaker Rod Webber has received years of FBI and Boston PD harassment, in particular after he sued Donald Trump and won.

But indeed, I’m no such person.

For years I was in the institution’s exclusive circles, and considered one of the best, so now they gotta make a difficult decision, and in this conundrum I invite them to recalibrate themselves to the oath each one of them swore.

It’s my assessment that they’ve made one attempt to toss me down the stairwell, and maybe they’re still trying to figure out how to do it again, because I tend to land on my feet, and dang it: I get the sense they find that annoying.

A post that sort-of covers this first attempt is here.

I’m good with that; discomfort is what inspires a person (or an organization) to embrace change, and I took the same oath of service they did, although from what I gather there’s a considerable difference of opinion regarding the calibration of actions to the US Constitution, in particular its first amendment.



Kent Dahlgren

Product management fix-it guy. World-famous people skills. Extremely small hands. (edit) marketing lady says I’m also supposed to say “CEO of software company”