Bush men have obviously been pondering the imposition of Permanent
National Emergency for as long as they have been planning Permanent
War. The discovery of a draft of the so-called Patriot Act II, rushed
forward by Bush's national security conspirators in January for
review by their allies on Capitol Hill, presents the public with
a warning of - but not a defense against - a cunningly devised blueprint
for the modern, total police state. Combined with the Patriot I,
enacted immediately after September 11 by a nearly unanimous Congress,
and through gross distortions of existing conspiracy laws plus the
catch-22s of secrecy, Patriot II is the perfect tool to "disappear"
any number of human beings for any reason to any place for any length
II destroys the very meaning of citizenship, allowing its arbitrary
revocation based on secret evidence, thereby rendering the Constitution
a nullity. It is a careful design to abolish the rule of law.
may not matter whether Patriot II becomes law or not. The document
is less a draft bill than a plan and guidance for a kind of martial
law - with the "law" part left out. The editors of Harper's
Weekly Review for February 10, craftsmen of encapsulation, boiled
the abomination down to its essentials:
copy of the Justice Department's proposed expansion of the USA
Patriot Act was leaked to the Center for Public Integrity. The
draft bill, entitled the Domestic Security Enhancement Act of
2003, contains proposals to radically expand the authority of
law-enforcement agencies, to increase the surveillance of American
citizens, and to reduce or eliminate judicial oversight over that
surveillance; it would also authorize secret arrests, create a
DNA database of "suspected terrorists," create new death
penalties, and empower the government to strip American citizenship
from anyone who "provides material support" to a terrorist
the axe man comes for your head, lesser extremities diminish in
importance. Patriot II is a plan to decapitate the Constitution
by removing the impediment of citizenship rights, without which
the Bill of Rights is just a piece of paper. Yale Law professor
Jack M. Balkin caught his breath long enough to register his astonishment
in a February
18 article for the Los Angeles Times.
the most troubling section would strip U.S. citizenship from anyone
who gives "material support" to any group that the attorney
general designates as a terrorist organization. Citizenship is
the most basic right of all Americans, one from which other rights
- such as the right to vote, to participate in politics and even
to live in this country - all flow. Under our Constitution, Americans
can't be deprived of their citizenship and the rights that go
with it unless they voluntarily give it up.
measure would get around that constitutional guarantee through
a legal loophole. It presumes that anyone who provides "material
support" to an organization on the attorney general's blacklist
- even if that support is otherwise lawful - has intended to relinquish
citizenship and therefore may be immediately expatriated.
support" is whatever "they" claim it to be. "They"
don't have to tell you what support you gave, or to whom. Secret
arrest means no one knows you were taken. Secret charges mean you
will not know what to defend yourself against, and since you have
draft of Patriot II was supposed to be a secret, too, concealed
from all but the politically reliable few. Yet legislation is public
business, so what is the point of secrecy?
II is not meant as legislation at all. It cannot possibly be enacted
under even what passes for "normal" conditions of life,
today, and would never stand judicial review. No, Patriot II is,
as we previously described it, a "plan and guidance" for
the Bush security apparatus, to be acted upon without legislative
approval at a time and under pretexts chosen by the administration.
Once full-scale hostilities in Iraq or elsewhere begin, or immediately
upon an attack on the United States (or "discovery" of
plots for attacks, or staged attacks) the Bush men are prepared
to proceed as if Patriot II is law, under emergency decree.
possibly, without a decree. The minds that devised this law/plan/guide
have every intention of using the powers contained therein. The
document was rushed to legislative members of the cabal for informational
purposes, in haste to keep up with the movement of men and arms
to the Middle East and the universe of pretexts that arise with
now know what Bush's intentions are: to abolish the legal foundations
of civil society. We are about to be violated in ways that only
a savage could imagine. The Time of Disappeared People is near upon
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