February 20, 2007

Military Police State Tightens it's Grip

"We're just interpreting the law," is the effective statement of the 2-1 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, which upholds Bush's authority to detain US citizens indefinitely if he labels them "enemy combatants".[1] Don't look to the Judicial branch if the Bush military machine grabs you off of the street. The judiciary has itself been "captured" by the right-wing authoritarians. Chris Floyd of Empire Burlesque expands on the specific judges in this decision.

Unless Congress reverses the Military Commissions Act, which it passed just last year with Democratic (jellyfish) support, even lackey drivers and cooks who happen to work for suspected terrorists, are now subject to arbitrary and capricious military tribunals, if they are lucky, and detention for life, if they are unlucky.

This police state black hole certainly applies to non-citizens. But if you're a citizen and merely accused if being an enemy combatant, you could also face the black hole. There's nothing legal to prevent you from facing the fate of Jose Padilla, a US-born citizen who has been detained and tortured to the point brink of insanity.[2] The message? Don't, what ever you do, get on the wrong side of the Executive Branch of the United States of America, because the values of justice and fairness are no longer "the American way."

Today, the American way has descended into the murky world, embracing the ethic of might makes right. Don't get on the wrong side of this new American ethic. And, to be sure the right-wing authoritarians know which side you're on, they are busily working with the corporate communications oligopoly to make ours a life of Orwell's Winston Smith. For skin-crawling details, see this interview with Maureen Webb, human rights lawyer and author of “Illusions of Security: Global Surveillance and Democracy in the Post 9/11 World.”[3]

And, lest you think that only enemy combatants can be put behind bars, think again. The federal government is now abusing the murky realm of the Grand Jury system to silence people. It isn't too hard for 'deciders' in the Executive branch to hand-pick a prosecutor and steer a case to a right-wing judge. Then, you face "talking" about what you thought was private or protected political speech, or being locked up indefinitely if the judge finds you in criminal contempt for not talking or turning over "evidence". In other words, the right-wing authoritarians that rule America are using Grand Jury Traps.

History tells us that it's up to the people to steer our democracy, and change domestic right-wing authoritarian regimes. I was once told by a Brazilian, who lived through their US-backed dictatorship, that it's easier to prevent a dictatorship than to unseat one. Now is the time for preventive action.

Congressional and Media Contacts:

Write the US House of Representatives
Write the US Senate
Write the Major Media Outlets


1. "Court: Detainees can't challenge cases", HOPE YEN, Associated Press, February 20, 2007.

2. "Experts: Padilla unable to stand trial," CURT ANDERSON, Associated Press, February 21, 2007.

3. "Illusions of Security: Global Surveillance and Democracy in the Post-9/11 World," Interview of Maureen Webb by Amy Goodman, DemocracyNow! Tuesday, February 20th, 2007.

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