Setting the stage for a military dictatorship in the face of economic collapse


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Setting the Trap

Levin-McCain bill would create a presidential dictatorship. Where is the outrage?

by Justin Raimondo, November 30, 2011

Buried in the annual defense appropriations bill is a provision that would give the President the power to use the military to intern anyone – including American citizens – indefinitely, and hold them without charges or trial, anywhere in the world, including on American soil. The provision essentially repeals the longstanding Posse Comitatus Act, which prevents the military from engaging in law enforcement on US territory – the greatest fear of the Founders. Approved by a Senate subcommittee in secret hearings, the provisions open the road to a military dictatorship in this country – and for that we can thank Senators Carl Levin and John McCain, who introduced the measure. Both the FBI and the Pentagon came out against the Levin-McCain monstrosity, and Senator Mark Udall (D-Colorado) introduced an amendment striking the provision: the amendment was defeated in the Senate, 37-61.
The real purpose of the Levin-McCain provisions is entirely unrelated to “terrorism,” either by al-Qaeda or any known domestic outfit. It was put in there to codify a number of important “legal” precedents, which make it possible for the President to declare an American citizen an “enemy combatant” and hold him or her indefinitely without charges. This is the final step in a process that will enable the President to establish a de facto military dictatorship: it’s the “unitary presidency” meets the global economic crisis.

“America is part of the battlefield,” says Sen. Ayotte, quite accurately – and Americans are the target. Resistance is “terrorism”: dissent is a crime, and you’d better shut up and take it if you know what’s good for you. That’s the message they’re sending – and how, one wonders, will Americans respond?

Very disturbing news.

Here's a .PDF with the text of the bill (section 1031 starts on page 359):

Republican Sens. Rand Paul (Ky.) and John McCain (Ariz.) battled on the Senate floor Tuesday over a proposed amendment to the pending defense authorization bill that could allow American citizens who are suspected of terrorism to be denied a civilian trial.

Paul argued the amendment, which is cosponsored by McCain, "puts every single American citizen at risk" and suggested that if the amendment passes, "the terrorists have won."

“Should we err today and remove some of the most important checks on state power in the name of fighting terrorism, well then the terrorists have won," Paul argued, "[D]etaining American citizens without a court trial is not American."

McCain, however, who has spent hours of floor time in the last weeks promoting his amendment, hurried to the floor to defend it against Paul's onslaught.
"An individual, no matter who they are, if they pose a threat to the security of the United States of America, should not be allowed to continue that threat," said McCain. ...


I've been watching McCain and his buddy Lieberman dig on this issue since at least 2007 when they were trumpeting Jane Harmon's Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007 (which thankfully never passed) and subsequent attempt to pass this shit in stand-alone legislation:

A bill introduced today in the Senate would hand the government the power to indefinitely detain terrorism suspects without charge or trial, dealing a swift blow to due process and the rule of law.

The Enemy Belligerent Interrogation, Detention and Prosecution Act of 2010, introduced by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), would also create an entirely new system of interrogation by requiring intelligence officials to be consulted about how to handle terrorism suspects after their capture. ...

March 4, 2010

Mr. President, I rise to introduce legislation that sets forth a clear, comprehensive policy for the detention, interrogation and trial of enemy belligerents who are suspected of engaging in hostilities against the United States. This legislation seeks to ensure that the mistakes made during the apprehension of the Christmas Day bomber, such as reading him a Miranda warning, will never happen again and put Americans’ security at risk.

Specifically, this bill would require unprivileged enemy belligerents suspected of engaging in hostilities against the U.S. to be held in military custody and interrogated for their intelligence value by a “high value detainee” interagency team established by the President. This interagency team of experts in national security, terrorism, intelligence, interrogation and law enforcement will have the protection of U.S. civilians and civilian facilities as their paramount responsibility and experience in gaining actionable intelligence from high value detainees.
A key provision of this bill is that it would prohibit a suspected enemy belligerent from being provided with a Miranda warning and being told he has a right to a lawyer and a right to refuse to cooperate. ...

Additionally, the legislation would authorize detention of enemy belligerents without criminal charges for the duration of the hostilities consistent with standards under the law of war which have been recognized by the Supreme Court. Importantly, if a decision is made to hold a criminal trial after the necessary intelligence information is obtained, the bill mandates trial by military commission where we are best able to protect U.S. national security interests, including sensitive classified sources and methods, as well as the place and the people involved in the trial itself.

An individual, including a citizen of the United States, determined to be an unprivileged enemy belligerent under section 3(c)(2) in a manner which satisfies Article 5 of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War may be detained without criminal charges and without trial for the duration of hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners in which the individual has engaged, or which the individual has purposely and materially supported, consistent with the law of war and any authorization for the use of military force provided by Congress pertaining to such hostilities.

The political class in this country has jumped the shark.



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Floyd, Virginia
The only good part of this is that the military is against it. Go guys - at least someone realized they took an oath to the constitution.

This central statism has been building for what seems like my whole life, and it's sick. My skin crawls whenever I hear a pol say or imply "we know what's best for you".

Having been everything from a spook, to an aerospace engineer, to a rock star, to homeless bum, to business owner, to stock trader (with a few left out) - hell, they can't even know which "me" they are talking about, much less "us" - which is why we let states experiment around and why centralization of power - even if shared between three branches (not what's proposed here, notice?) is very very bad.

Weren't warrant-less wiretaps on 100% of the populace enough to nip any revolution in the bud? I've seen the pictures of the Naurus and other gear installed in all major phone company switch points, with enough bandwidth to do *all* traffic, not just an amount you'd think the FBI etc would need for actual criminal work (which you can take either way). These are the actions of people who have screwed someone really really bad and are now afraid of retribution.

Now, if they were talking about denoting banksters the enemies of the state they are, I might feel better - for about 10 seconds. Except these clowns think they, not us ARE the state.

Most of the rest of what I feel about this can't be expressed in words you'd want to see here - and they wouldn't be enough for me unless they made your screen catch on fire.

Gotta go hide some of the guns somewhere safe.


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This stuff just makes me sick. My family came here specifically to avoid it, and here we are again. I've come to realize that I may have to venture to a strange, faraway place in the same manner that my great grandparents did - with nothing but what you can carry and a language that the locals do not speak.

We don't have an America that we can flee to. Ugh.
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