Saturday, June 02, 2007

Forever President for a forever war?

By Libby

I hate being right about bad stuff. I've been warning for years now that the Bush administration's underlying agenda from the beginning has been to install a totalitarian government, putting themselves in charge forever. The warning signs have been there all along for those willing to see.

Every step this White House has taken has had the express purpose of abolishing due process and undermining the rule of law. The Patriot Act, domestic surveillance, datamining, the power to designate enemy combatants and hold them indefinitely without charge, secret rendition, the normalization of torture, the unitary executive theory, the abuse of signing statements, the "state's secrets" defenses and the loading of entire Justice system from the local courts to SCOTUS with GOP operatives have all taken us baby steps closer to the realization of the neo-con dream of imperial power.

Then they got serious.
In October 2006, Bush signed into law the John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007. Quietly slipped into the law at the last minute, at the request of the Bush administration, were sections changing important legal principles, dating back 200 years, which limit the U.S. government's ability to use the military to intervene in domestic affairs. These changes would allow Bush, whenever he thinks it necessary, to institute martial law--under which the military takes direct control over civilian administration.
Now, via Maha, who adds some relevant analysis of the legalese, comes the keystone of their plan. The invaluable White House watcher, Charlie Savage at the Boston Globe reports on the latest sneaky little trick. At the beginning of this month, Bush authorized a new "doomsday plan" to be activated in the event of a national emergency.
The policy broadly defines a "catastrophic emergency" -- the triggering event for the plan -- as "any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions."
A definition that broad could include an ice cream shortage in Manhattan in August and the policy gives Bush wide discretion to decide if such an event constitutes an emergency.

This sudden shift has raised alarm even with such incurable neo-cons as Chief SwiftBoater Jerome Corsi.
When the president determines a catastrophic emergency has occurred, the president can take over all government functions and direct all private sector activities to ensure we will emerge from the emergency with an "enduring constitutional government."

Translated into layman's terms, when the president determines a national emergency has occurred, the president can declare to the office of the presidency powers usually assumed by dictators to direct any and all government and business activities until the emergency is declared over.
What this policy doesn't include is any reference to "statutes in which Congress has imposed checks and balances on the president's power to impose martial law or other extraordinary measures." In other words it cuts Congress right out of the picture and gives Bush authority not only to decide when and if to declare martial law but also to decide when it should end.

Critics of the plan, whom I would think should include just about everyone except the hard-core dead-enders that still support the Madman at 1600 Penn Ave, ask why the policy was enacted without any public announcement or input.
White House spokesman Gordon Johndroe said that because of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the American public needs no explanation of such plans.
I've said this many times and I'll say it again. Facism doesn't hit like a sledgehammer. It creeps in like the fog, or in this case under the cover of the fog of the so-called war on terror. That would be the war they tell us will never end.

Think about it and then ask yourself what you would do if Bush suspends elections and refuses to leave office.

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Blogger Jim Martin said...

I would refer you to the Second Amendment.
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

The Founding Fathers, being revolutionaries themselves, wanted to keep the option alive.
I would also state that I would gladly fight the government to save my country.

2:44:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Careful Jim. These days a simple remark like that can earn you a visit from the DHS.

3:08:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Martin said...

Hell, Libby, in for a penny, in for a pound. If we can have elections twice during WWII I think the republic can withstand a terrorist attack or even a bunch of them. Of course, Americans acted like a bunch of chickens after 9/11 so who knows.Maybe they will throw the constitution in the trash if Bush promises them a big sale at the mall.

4:28:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I'll never understand the overreaction to 9/11. It's not that it wasn't awful. I found it so shocking I didn't go to work for two days and just watched the news for 48 hours straight but then I got over it. I was one of the 10% who thought Afghanistan was a mistake.

7:59:00 PM  
Blogger nolocontendere said...

This is the one issue that absolutely has to be addressed and the sooner the better.
The gun debate flared again briefly after V Tech but only in the context of gun accessability and such. What we need to do is talk about the (up to now) unspeakable subject of uprising and self defense from a government run amok with the intent to violently usurp and suppress our rights and finally do away with the constitution completely.
Just 3 things here, if I may. I believe the fascists planned to have our armed forces out of the country and severely weakened so they wouldn't be a factor in whatever they have planned. If past behavior shows us anything they will bring in paid mercenaries, mostly foreign, who won't have compunctions against firing on american citizens.
The left, progressives, liberals, old hippies, whatever, need to get over aversion to the gun culture and embrace it not just as a political strategy but in case of a fight for our very existance. If I could say just one thing to people about what's going down in this country I'd advise them to buy weapons and learn how to use them, and hand them out to family and friends right now.
And also a key thing is law enforcement. Fascists can't get away with what they have planned if cops will refuse to obey unjust and immoral commands. If cops are on the side of constitutionality the fascists will hang sooner than later.
This desperately needs to be addressed before it's too late to do it.

3:53:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Nolo, Bush already has his private army. It's called Blackwater and as we saw in NOLA, they have no compunction about firing on US citizens.

As for gun control, I got over my aversion to guns in about 1980 but I never did learn to shoot. I've also thought that the push for "gun control" by the government is just a back door method of disarming the people.

I'm one of the few lefties that supports gun owners rights.

8:49:00 AM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

I'm another gun toting liberal and I did learn to shoot. I cannot understand why there isn't the biggest uproar in American history over all of this, but I remain

Semper Paratus

10:12:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I don't get it either Fogg.

11:45:00 AM  
Blogger nolocontendere said...

Yup, the "liberal" antipathy to guns has been one of those curiosities that makes one scratch one's head. Actually I think it's part of the public perception for the opposite reason - the brownshirt brigade has co-opted guns and zealously tries to own the issue, successfully having those politically opposed appear to be on the side of prohibition. Sadly too many lefties and progressives buy into that. I can't tell you how many times I'm automatically assumed to be a closet Bushist or troll in forums or blog comments like this for passionate views on gun ownership.

It's very, very important that we all become acquainted with weapons. The second amendment wasn't placed there just after freedom of speech for nothing.

6:35:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Yeah, I haven't won many friends on the left with my pro-gun stance. In fact I've probably lost some.

9:32:00 PM  

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