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    So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

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    So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 01 Dec 2011 21:43

    http://www.unitedliberty.org/articles/9 ... eas-corpus

    The United States Senate voted yesterday to keep language in a defense authorization bill that would allow the federal government to indefinately detain American citizens without formal charges based on merely on the suspicion that they may be terrorists. Apparently, the writ of Habeau Corpus doesn’t mean what it used to:

    The Senate soundly defeated a move to strip out controversial language requiring mandatory detention of some terror suspects, voting it down 61 to 37 and escalating a fight with the Obama administration over the future course of the war on terror.

    The proposed amendment to the massive National Defense Authorization Act would require the FBI and other civilian law enforcement agencies to transfer al-Qaida suspects arrested overseas on charges of planning or carrying out a terror attack into military custody. It wouldn’t apply to American citizens, but the change has drawn strong opposition from civil rights groups and the White House, which has promised to veto the defense bill if that language was included.

    The provision has also split the Democratic Party, triggering an unusual fight between the White House and Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, who co-wrote the measure and took to the floor earlier on Tuesday to defend the amendment. Levin has also found himself in the cross hairs of powerful Democrats like Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont and Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein of California. Both lawmakers urged their colleagues to strip the detainee language out of the bill and accused Levin of overstepping his jurisdiction.

    But Levin’s biggest Democratic opponent was Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., who sponsored an amendment designed to remove the detainee language.

    You can find out how your Senators voted here. You can also check out the text of Sen. Udall’s amendment here.

    At least one conservative, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) has responded publicly to the criticism over his vote to approve the bill with the controversial language, which the White House objects to (don’t hold your breath), noting that he wants the language curtailed (though he doesn’t explain what exactly was wrong with Udall’s amendment):

    “Congress should make absolutely clear that the U.S. government does not have authority to detain an American citizen indefinitely without trial and proper constitutional process,” said Senator Lee, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “This amendment ensures the proper balance between individual liberty and national security, and maintains that we are both a free and a secure nation.”

    Amendment #1126 to the NDAA states: “The authority described in this section for the Armed Forces of the United States to detain a person does not include the authority to detain a citizen of the United States without trial until the end of hostilities.”

    Senator Lee strongly disapproves of any policy that would allow for the indefinite detention of American citizens. Congress expects to vote on the amendment this week as a part of the NDAA package.

    Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), a fierce advocate for civil liberties, spoke passionately yesterday during the debate over the issue, respectfully criticizing those members of the body that would effectively gut the Constitution:



    Let’s hope that Lee is right and they have another chance to strip this language. Keep in mind that whenever government power grows, it is often abused. It’s not crazy to suggest that the definition of a terrorist, at some point, will be expanded at some point to include those of us that criticize the government. Remember the DHS handbook on “domestic extremism” or the MIAC report? It may not be tomorrow and this may have “good intentions” today, but aborting civil liberties is never a good idea.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 01 Dec 2011 21:58

    At least it's good to know our elected representatives can put aside their political differences and get together on something, huh?

    See how your senators voted: http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/r ... vote=00210
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 01 Dec 2011 22:19

    Isn't that kind of law (the kind that says people cannot be held indefinitely without charge and process) sort of critical and central to maining democracy?

    Seems a wee bit important... oh well, maybe not. :lol:
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 01 Dec 2011 22:26

    Yeah, "Due Process" is what we call it.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Shepherd492 » 02 Dec 2011 07:50

    Cool! Just what we needed! Seems like an (un)natural evolution of some of the "security features" from the Patriot Act. I'm so glad we have laws like this to protect us from the evil terrorists that maybe outside our homes AT THIS VERY MOMENT!!!

    In all seriousness, I sometimes wonder if direct democracy isn't the way to go, abolishing Congress altogether. It is obvious that not only are they completely removed from what Americans actually care about, but also that they don't represent the common people at all. It would be tough to manage, but I think it isn't impossible given the technology of today. Atleast then junk like this and SOPA would never have a credible chance at actually becoming legislature.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Lundse » 02 Dec 2011 09:57

    Frank Zappa wrote:“The illusion of freedom will continue as long as it's profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater.”
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby JustSomeGuy » 02 Dec 2011 22:02

    Freakzilla wrote:In all seriousness, I sometimes wonder if direct democracy isn't the way to go, abolishing Congress altogether.


    Direct democracy? That's crazy!
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 02 Dec 2011 22:09

    JustSomeGuy wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:In all seriousness, I sometimes wonder if direct democracy isn't the way to go, abolishing Congress altogether.


    Direct democracy? That's crazy!


    I didn't write that. :shock:
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 02 Dec 2011 22:09

    We could text our vote, like on American Idol, huh? :lol:
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby JustSomeGuy » 02 Dec 2011 22:23

    Oh, my bad- and yeah, texting your vote in would be an option. I keep thinking about that movie, Idiocracy.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby JustSomeGuy » 02 Dec 2011 22:25

    Also, that Santa avatar gives me the creeps. I don't trust the look of that Santa, and I wouldn't feel safe around him.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Drunken Idaho » 02 Dec 2011 23:28

    That provision is truly scary, and I don't even live in the US. Yes, Freak you're absolutely right in saying that the definition of terrorism could be expanded to lock up other other types of dissidents. Anyone recall this creepy news story from 09... http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,526972,00.html? Basically saying that the Department of Defense considers protests to be "low-level" terrorism.

    Apparently, the DoD said they rectified that policy, but if I recall correctly the language was still really fuzzy. The point is, that's the attitude among those who call those shots in the US... Maybe some DoD oligarch decides that organizing a protest against risky financial products, or demonstrating against unlimited lobbying power, is a "low level" attack on what they decide America stands for, then they send out a team to whisk you away in the night to a cell with no legal access to a lawyer or any due process. Sounds paranoid, but I think people need to be on the lookout for this type of thing.

    And meanwhile, your internet freedoms are under attack too. The SOPA bill is another frighteningly draconian piece of legislation with support on both sides of the aisles (Bipartisanship! :dance: ). Basically, the bill proposes that the US does what China does with its internet. They decide which sites are allowed and which ones get blocked, you lose.

    You gotta wonder what's with all these death-knell bills popping up all of a sudden.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 03 Dec 2011 10:47

    JustSomeGuy wrote:Also, that Santa avatar gives me the creeps. I don't trust the look of that Santa, and I wouldn't feel safe around him.


    It was the best I could find at work, I'll look for something better this weekend...
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 03 Dec 2011 10:49

    What scares me is THIS is what our representatives can agree on, NOW? It seems they continue to concentrate on everything but what is really needed.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Shepherd492 » 03 Dec 2011 12:04

    JustSomeGuy wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:In all seriousness, I sometimes wonder if direct democracy isn't the way to go, abolishing Congress altogether.


    Direct democracy? That's crazy!


    I don't think its crazy at all, atleast, not as crazy as the current system of fat cats being paid off by fatter cats. It would need a completely different structure, especially in drafting bills, and the constitution would need some kind of special protection (this needs to happen now), but indirect democracy doesn't seem to actually put the power in the people's hands.

    I've given quite a bit of thought to this, probably too much considering it would NEVER happen-not without some kind of revolution, and even then most people will be too lazy, busy, or unconcerned to actually participate, but it is fun to think about. Technology does make it possible, even for a nation as large as ours.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby SandChigger » 04 Dec 2011 11:18

    It's not whether it COULD be done (because it could) but whether it SHOULD be done.

    I look around at the idiots I call countrymen and I'm thinking I don't want those people having a direct say in vital issues.

    The system isn't completely broken yet.

    And "democracy" will always just be a politer Greek way of saying "mob rule". ;)
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby SadisticCynic » 04 Dec 2011 11:37

    SandChigger wrote:It's not whether it COULD be done (because it could) but whether it SHOULD be done.

    I look around at the idiots I call countrymen and I'm thinking I don't want those people having a direct say in vital issues.

    The system isn't completely broken yet.

    And "democracy" will always just be a politer Greek way of saying "mob rule". ;)


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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby SandChigger » 04 Dec 2011 19:59

    Just the bits about Atlantis. ;) :P
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Shepherd492 » 05 Dec 2011 22:42

    SandChigger wrote:It's not whether it COULD be done (because it could) but whether it SHOULD be done.

    I look around at the idiots I call countrymen and I'm thinking I don't want those people having a direct say in vital issues.

    The system isn't completely broken yet.

    And "democracy" will always just be a politer Greek way of saying "mob rule". ;)


    Yeah, the very first step to something like that would be educating people. Obviously something like this can't work if people still believe that the sun orbits the earth, remain completely ignorant of history, and actually think humans walked with dinosaurs. Shame the education system is so damn bad...the reason people don't know shit about government or history is because they aren't even taught it.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Nekhrun » 05 Dec 2011 22:47

    Shepherd492 wrote:Shame the education system is so damn bad...the reason people don't know shit about government or history is because they aren't even taught it.

    Not true. It works very well for people who are not in poverty. Why would a kid want to try in school if he/she is hungry, doesn't have stable housing or has to work to help support the family?

    People make the mistake of looking at average standardized test scores (which are bullshit anyway http://theinnovativeeducator.blogspot.c ... ng-is.html ) when they should really be looking at the populations who score lower than others and why that is.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 05 Dec 2011 22:55

    We tried to hold my step-son back last year because he failed, but they wouldn't hear of it since he passed the standardized test.

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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Nekhrun » 05 Dec 2011 22:57

    Freakzilla wrote:We tried to hold my step-son back last year because he failed, but they wouldn't hear of it since he passed the standardized test.

    "No Child Left Behind"

    Like I said, those tests are shit. Most schools won't hold kids back anymore because there's not any research that shows that it helps. In many cases it causes more harm than good. There's a lot to be said for social promotion.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 05 Dec 2011 23:06

    I got failed one semester of American History because I lost my book! I took it again my senior year and got a B without trying. :snooty:
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Nekhrun » 05 Dec 2011 23:15

    Freakzilla wrote:I got failed one semester of American History because I lost my book!

    Someone must've had it out for the young Freakzilla.
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    Re: So much for the Great Writ of Habeas Corpus (Again)

    Postby Freakzilla » 05 Dec 2011 23:24

    I was OK, I didn't mind hanging out with the softmore chicks as a senior. ;)
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