Thursday, July 18, 2013

Hedges, Ellsberg, et. al. Lose Battle in NDAA Lawsuit

Chris Hedges, Daniel Ellsberg, Noam Chomsky, and others have been trying to get key provisions of the NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) killed. And in the latest development, they've failed.

The NDAA is an odious piece of legislation -- passed by the worthless wankers in Congress and signed by Obama -- that allows for the indefinite detention of American citizens based on whim. If the authorities merely think you might be a "terrorist" -- not even that -- if they think you might be "consorting" with "terrorists" or have Terroristy Intent, they can jail you. Without charges, without a trial, without due process of law.

They can even jail you in a military prison.

It's unbelievable that most Americans still don't know this law exists, but there you have it. And of the ones who do, many of them -- including in the media -- give a collective "meh." Even though journalists are especially threatened by the NDAA -- they could be charged with "terrorism" and detained just for publishing news reports, if somebody in authority deems anything in those news reports is "helping" "terrorists." Just ask James Risen.

People have already been jailed for Terroristy Speech. This is already happening. So how can any charge be deemed too insane for our overlords to throw at us?

Given that the judiciary is a reflection of society at large, I know I shouldn't be surprised at this latest defeat. But last year, one brave judge did stand up for the rule of law in this case -- Judge Katherine Forrest. She recognized the NDAA for what it is -- a complete negation of the Bill of Rights -- and briefly stopped it in its tracks. We should erect a statue in her honor.

The Obama administration, of course, immediately appealed. Because Mr. Hope and Change wants the power to indefinitely detain you. He knows more about liberty than you do, you peon.

Now, in "a black day for liberty" as Hedges called it, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit has upheld the Obama administration's position. There's nowhere to go next but the Supreme Court, and as Hedges points out, the Supreme Court doesn't have to take this case.

But hey, go back to American Idol and Honey Boo Boo, my fellow Americans. Move along, nothing to see here. So what if the Bill of Rights doesn't exist -- hell, little of it does anyway since 9/11, the Patriot Act, and the entire shit-storm that has followed -- who cares if the few remaining shreds get scattered to the wind? We're in a war, people! The Terrorists Are Everywhere! Can't Be Too Safe!

And if a few -- or a few hundred -- or a few thousand -- innocent people get swept up in the process, that's a small price to pay. After all, look what happened to Japanese-Americans during WWII. They survived. Sure, their rights were eviscerated, they were herded into internment camps, but it wasn't so bad. This is America, after all. Our camps are better than anybody else's camps! Freedom is overrated anyway. And Freedom Isn't Free.

Just as we had to destroy the village in order to save it, we have to destroy freedom in order to save it.

Everyone who still defends this indefensible president, who still goes around blathering about how he's a "good" and "decent" man, deserves what he gets. Unfortunately, the rest of us are going to get it, too.

This country is now full of Good Germans. And just as they once got their comeuppance, so, too, will we. It's only a matter of time.

But perhaps that's as it should be. This country, which has rained so much horror and destruction down on other people in other lands in the so-called War on Terror, is now set to rain it down on us. There's a phrase for that sort of thing; you may have heard of it: our chickens are coming home to roost.