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Sep 18 2012

The Obama administration considers constitutional rights to be dangerous

I have written in the past about the odious piece of legislation known as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would enable the administration to indefinitely detain without trial people whom the government on its own decides is providing “substantial support” to groups “engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners”. (See here, here, and here.)

I also hailed the decision by US District court Judge Kathleen B. Forrest, an Obama appointee, to strike down the law as unconstitutional.

But of course, the authoritarian Obama administration yesterday called for an pending appeal to the federal appeals court, saying the verdict is ‘dangerous’ and a threat to ‘national security’, that sweeping phrase under which civil liberties have been steadily taken in the last decade.

The Obama administration clearly thinks that there should be no restrictions placed on its ability to arrest, detain without trial, torture, or even kill people that it alone deems to be threats.

Glenn Greenwald has must-read piece on the Obama appeal and why the NDAA is so bad.

5 comments

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  1. 1
    Marcus Ranum

    Typical oligarchs/plutocrats. Constitutional rights threaten their ability to act, and since they know they are above/outside the law, they don’t care because it’ll never impact them.

  2. 2
    iknklast

    Too many people would rather have the illusion of safety than the messy reality of liberty. I heard a friend of mine speak approvingly of a trip to Israel where an armed soldier would jump out at you brandishing a gun if you so much as stopped to talk to a child on the street. He wanted it to be like that here. I thought at the time how horrible that would be; I still think that.

  3. 3
    drr1

    With the exception of his belated support of same sex marriage, President Obama’s civil rights record is, to put it mildly, disappointing.

    Of course, indefinite detentions without charge are really rather quaint, in a Dubya-esque sort of way, don’t you think? This is the President who believes he has the constitutional authority to put citizens’ names on a kill list, where you wind up dead – needless to say, no due process required – because Mr. Obama says so. And if your survivors show up in federal court to challenge the President’s action? He’ll ask the court to dismiss (which the court will do, naturally) on the grounds that your survivors lack standing to sue, and because the President’s decision to put your name on the kill list was a nonjusticiable political question.

    Dangerous, indeed.

  4. 4
    mnb0

    And this is where I begin to dislike Romney. Obama needs a left wing opponent. You Americans now have the choice between authoritarian right and stupid right.
    I dislike to write it, but on moments like these I’m glad I don’t live in the USA.
    I sincerely hope your judges will be able to protect constitutional rights, somewhat similar to the way Dutch judges have to protect the rechtsstaat against politicians.

  5. 5
    Tige Gibson

    Your friend would love to imbibe fear through a bong.

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