Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Wanna See Something Really Scary?

Just in time for Halloween, the Bush Administration and their rubber stamp Congress have promogulated a law which would chill all of the gun-toting, black helicopter-watching militia members which were convinced Hillary Clinton was the head of the One World Conspiracy. Of course, you'll hear nary a peep out of anyone on the right-wing about the stealth law revealed in this indymedia report. Instead all Americans of every stripe should realize that Bush hates us for our freedoms.

Public Law 109-364 or the "John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007" (HR5122)(2) was signed into law by George W. Bush on October 17th of this year in a private Oval Office ceremony. It gives the President the authority to declare a 'public emergency' and station troops anywhere in America while taking control of state-based National Guard units without the consent of that state's governor or other local authorities, so as to 'suppress public disorder'. With a single stroke of his poison pen, Bush undid centuries-old prohibitions on the use of military force in domestic law enforcement, namely the Insurrection Act and the Posse Comitatus Act. This comes in Section 1076 of the above-mentioned bill, entitled "Use of the Armed Forces in Major Public Emergencies", which allows the president to deploy troops within US borders in the event of a natural disaster, epidemic, public health emergency, or terrorist incident. And who gets the open-ended no-bid contract to build detention centers in just such an emergency? Why a division of Halliburton of course, the neginering and construction subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR).

It seems that in the entire body of Congress the only person to notice this violation was Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont who noted his grace reservations about this rider slipped into a standard bill to fund the eternal war, saying "we certainly do not need to make it easier for Presidents to declare martial law. Invoking the Insurrection Act and using the military for law enforcement activities goes against some of the central tenets of our democracy. One can easily envision governors and mayors in charge of an emergency having to constantly look over their shoulders while someone who has never visited their communities gives the orders."

This law also facilitates the transfer of the latest in 'crowd control' technology and other dissent-suppressing weaponry from the military to local militarized police units, such as the Long-Range Acoustic Device (LRAD). With the growing political unrest cresting in the upcoming midterm elections and the Bush Adminstration about to go into a defensive phase as the Democratic Party is poised to retake the halls of Congress, no one has noticed that our president has seen fit to usurp our democracy in the most egregious and authoritarian move yet.

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