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If America Is the Battleground, Nobody Has Any Rights
CATO / The Washington Examiner ^ | 2011-12-19 | Gene Healy

Posted on 12/24/2011 10:00:33 AM PST by rabscuttle385

Last Thursday — which happened to be the 220th anniversary of the ratification of the Bill of Rights — the Senate passed a defense bill that demonstrates just how cavalier Congress can be with our fundamental liberties.

Given the opportunity to clarify existing law and confirm that American citizens are not subject to indefinite military detention at the order of the president — Congress punted.

After a debate in which key members seriously contemplated empowering the president to "Gitmo-ize" Americans suspected of terrorist activity, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 leaves the question open. Maybe he can, maybe he can't, so let's let the courts sort it out.

The legislation is ready for President Obama's signature, the president having caved on his earlier veto threat. Happy Bill of Rights Day!

It could have been even worse. An earlier version of the bill would, according to one of its cosponsors, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., have allowed the president to use the U.S. military to seize American citizens on the home front and ship them to Guantanamo.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., cheered the provision, because it would "basically say in law for the first time that the homeland is part of the battlefield." He added that "I believe our military should be deeply involved in fighting these guys at home."

James Madison, the father of the Bill of Rights, was somewhat less giddy about the prospect of militarizing the home front. "A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty," he warned at the Constitutional Convention, "the means of defense against foreign danger have always been the instruments of tyranny at home."

Yet for all the Tea Party-inspired Constitution-waving on the Hill, only a minority of Republicans seem to share the Founders' justified fear of standing armies at home.

An amendment that would have explicitly excluded U.S. citizens from the bill's military detention provisions failed by a 45-55 vote in the Senate, with only a handful of Tea Party Republicans — including Sens. Rand Paul, R-Ky., Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Mark Kirk, R-Ill., — breaking with their party to oppose selective martial law within the United States.

The language that passed Thursday ducks the issue, stating that the bill isn't intended to change existing law on U.S. citizens arrested in the U.S. But the compromise Congress settled on settles nothing. Existing law is unclear, and the NDAA makes it murkier still.

In 2002 during the Bush administration, federal officials seized Brooklyn-born al Qaeda suspect Jose Padilla, declared him an "enemy combatant," and ordered him held in a military brig without charges.

The Bush Justice Department argued that Congress had authorized military detention of citizens at home when it authorized war against al Qaeda. But fearing a Supreme Court rebuke, the administration transferred Padilla to federal prison in early 2006, so that question has never been resolved by the Court.

But Congress can clarify the issue itself. Paul has joined 12 of his colleagues in backing the "Due Process Guarantee Act of 2011," which insists that congressional authorization for a war "shall not authorize the detention without charge or trial of a citizen... apprehended in the United States, unless an Act of Congress expressly authorizes such detention."

A decade into the War on Terror, al Qaeda is a radically diminished force. At home, it's apparently been reduced to a few hapless radicals, too dumb to realize they're being played by FBI informants.

If Congress thinks its necessary to turn America into a battlefield to address that sort of threat, the least they can do is to say so.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Front Page News; Government; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 112th; bho44; biggovernment; bloodoftyrants; constitution; cwii; democrats; donttreadonme; govtabuse; lindseygraham; lping; mccain; obama; policestate; rapeofliberty; rinos; tyranny; waronliberty

1 posted on 12/24/2011 10:00:36 AM PST by rabscuttle385
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To: SteelTrap; JustSayNoToNannies; Dr. Morrall; pa_dweller; Abathar; Abcdefg; Abram; Abundy; albertp; ..

Libertarian ping! Click here to get added or here to be removed or post a message here.

2 posted on 12/24/2011 10:08:11 AM PST by rabscuttle385 (Live Free or Die)
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To: rabscuttle385

Napolitano and the Nazi-minded goons at Homeland Security have demonstrated that terrorism and terrorists are what and who they say they are. One memo can make any of us a terrorist, and one piece of bad legislation takes away our right to prove different. That’s what big government is all about.


3 posted on 12/24/2011 10:11:57 AM PST by pallis
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To: rabscuttle385

What these idiots fail to understand is the the Federal Government is too incompetent and corrupt to be allowed to have this kind of power.


4 posted on 12/24/2011 10:22:13 AM PST by microgood
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To: rabscuttle385

... or follow any laws


5 posted on 12/24/2011 10:49:43 AM PST by SF_Redux (Sarah stands for accountablility and personal responsiblity, democrats can't live with that)
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To: rabscuttle385

Let’s face it—hussein and his thugs can do anything on a whim ‘cause he says so. He can go around, over, or under any law ‘cause to deny him that privilege would be racist. Just ask the doj head, holder.


6 posted on 12/24/2011 10:50:51 AM PST by freeangel ( (free speech is only good until someone else doesn't like it)
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To: freeangel

This is what frightens me. With 59 agencies and hundreds of thousands of government jobs created through obamacare, SCOTUS votes to kill it and the MSM and Rats blame the Repblicans for killing jobs in America.

And McConnell and Boehner give in.


7 posted on 12/24/2011 10:56:16 AM PST by EQAndyBuzz (Control the media, you control its citizens.)
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To: EQAndyBuzz

Arbeitsziehungslager watch.


8 posted on 12/24/2011 10:59:54 AM PST by Varsity Flight (Phony-Care is the Government Work-Camp: Arbeitsziehungslager)
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To: rabscuttle385; sickoflibs
rand paul is probably the only vote ive ever cast that i can honestly say i had a choice, and the vote aided my kids furture...

too bad he will forever be saddled with his fathers name, for right or wrong, in the future...

9 posted on 12/24/2011 11:16:01 AM PST by Gilbo_3 (Gov is not reason; not eloquent; its force.Like fire,a dangerous servant & master. George Washington)
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To: rabscuttle385
The National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 that allows federal agents to arrest and indefinitely imprison U.S. citizens suspected of being terrorists, without a hearing or trial, is a clear abridgment of our constitutional rights. The Rand Paul- sponsored bill: 'Due Process Guarantee Act of 2011" is the antidote to that poison. Let's get it publicized and passed.
10 posted on 12/24/2011 11:21:16 AM PST by Jim Scott
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To: rabscuttle385
...Related Thread.

Totalitarian Dictatorship

11 posted on 12/24/2011 11:23:59 AM PST by gargoyle (...a well informed public and a well regulated militia...)
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To: Varsity Flight

...Schutzstaffel?


12 posted on 12/24/2011 11:28:23 AM PST by gargoyle (...a well informed public and a well regulated militia...)
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To: rabscuttle385
Given the opportunity to clarify existing law and confirm that American citizens are not subject to indefinite military detention at the order of the president — Congress punted.

I've come to the conclusion that Congress will pretty much let any president do pretty much what they want within certain boundaries fixed by the major parties. In return for that individual congressmen are left alone to loot the country through IPO's, illegal campaign contributions and outright graft. How else do they go into congress with modest incomes and come out a few years later worth millions?

13 posted on 12/24/2011 11:32:43 AM PST by Tallguy (It's all 'Fun and Games' until somebody loses an eye!)
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To: rabscuttle385

The need for a Stability Police Force is foreseen now what with all the change sweeping our world.

http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2009/RAND_MG819.pdf


14 posted on 12/24/2011 11:45:32 AM PST by MurrietaMadman
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To: rabscuttle385

Thanks for posting. I believe that most Americans are not even aware of the NDAA provisions. You can go to all the “major” MSM sites and search on NDAA and you will find NOTHING.

Recall each and every Congressperson that voted for it.


15 posted on 12/24/2011 11:46:16 AM PST by Zarro (Recall EVERYONE in Congress voting for the NDAA 2012)
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To: microgood
What these idiots fail to understand is the the Federal Government is too incompetent and corrupt to be allowed to have this kind of power.

Funny how Congress can fight against light bulb bans, but something like this passes with no problems....We need to primary everybody who supported this legislation.
16 posted on 12/24/2011 11:50:49 AM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: af_vet_rr

Does anyone have a list with all the traitor`s names and states of origin? I`ll do my part to help get them fired on election day.


17 posted on 12/24/2011 12:05:20 PM PST by nomad
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To: nomad
You bet:

Senate traitors

House traitors
18 posted on 12/24/2011 12:34:40 PM PST by Zarro (Recall EVERYONE in Congress voting for the NDAA 2012)
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To: rabscuttle385

” - - - After a debate in which key members seriously contemplated empowering the president - - - “

Thanks for this thread.

Anytime that I hear or read about Congress adding more power to the Executive Branch of our sorry US Federal Government I question why Congress bothers to even come to work.

We already have a Dictator (in his own mind), and so is it really true that our sorry RINOs in Congress have learned NOTHING????????????


19 posted on 12/24/2011 12:49:42 PM PST by Graewoulf (( obama"care" violates the 1890 Sherman Anti-Trust Law, AND is illegal by the U.S. Constitution.))
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To: rabscuttle385

http://armedservices.house.gov/index.cfm/h-r-1540-bill-text-and-report

Contains actual bill, etc.


20 posted on 12/26/2011 9:31:51 AM PST by khnyny (Our government has become Hal in "2001 A Space Odyssey")
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To: rabscuttle385

America IS the battleground and the government is violating our rights.


21 posted on 12/26/2011 9:36:16 AM PST by Carry_Okie (The RNC would prefer Obama to a conservative nominee.)
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To: Zarro
You can go to all the “major” MSM sites and search on NDAA and you will find NOTHING.

They all got the memo from the Ministry of Truth.

22 posted on 12/26/2011 9:37:39 AM PST by Mr. Jeeves (CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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To: rabscuttle385

* for future


23 posted on 12/26/2011 10:11:51 AM PST by muddler (Chaos is coming..)
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To: rabscuttle385

>> Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., cheered the provision, because it would “basically say in law for the first time that the homeland is part of the battlefield.”

Like Hell it is ‘the first time’.

The legislation, funding, and practice portending the transformation into a police state is upon us.

These legislatures are despicable, disingenuous mouthpieces for something once know as representation.


24 posted on 12/26/2011 10:21:31 AM PST by Gene Eric (Save a pretzel for the gas jets.)
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To: Gene Eric
"These legislatures are despicable, disingenuous mouthpieces for something once know as representation."

Exactly.

25 posted on 12/26/2011 11:45:15 AM PST by Earthdweller (Harvard won the election again...so what's the problem.......? Embrace a ruler today.)
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To: All; pallis

What Good Can a Handgun Do Against An Army?
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-backroom/2312894/posts


26 posted on 12/26/2011 12:10:42 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet (You can't invade the US. There'd be a rifle behind every blade of grass.~Admiral Yamamoto)
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To: EQAndyBuzz

>>And McConnell and Boehner give in.

They didn’t give in. They believe in this as much as Obama/Reid/Pelosi. The American Way of Life is drawing to a close and the Elites of both parties (if you even want to call them two distinct parties anymore) are scared that the masses will take their privileges away, or worse if we go to a French-style Revolution. They are setting the pieces into place to keep us out of the streets and demanding their heads on a pike (whether literally or figuratively) for selling us out.


27 posted on 12/26/2011 1:01:04 PM PST by Bryanw92 (The solution to fix Congress: Nuke em from orbit. It's the only way to be sure!)
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To: rabscuttle385

The NDAA is a disaster. A complete repudiation of the Bill of Rights. A repeal of the Constitution. A declaration of martial law without actually deploying the military, setting curfews or confiscating citizens weapons — YET. Think I’m exaggerating? READ the pertinent sections — then interpret it like a Washington bureaucrat or a Federal judge. Case closed. NDAA MUST be overturned.... The alternatives are unthinkable.


28 posted on 12/26/2011 3:40:22 PM PST by patriot preacher
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