The US Continues its Morph Into a Police State

Latest development: The Pentagon Unilaterally Grants Itself Authority Over “Civil Disturbances”

In other words, the Commander in Chief can treat trouble at home as though it is an extension of the never-ending, everywhere-is-the-battlefield War on Terror if he likes.

What kind of trouble? Whatever pleases him in his unilateral, unaccountable, secret will.

But since when has such power ever been misused?

  • Noah Doyle

    I’m sure that this will be just fine, if we elect the right person!

    Sigh.

  • Robert Chase

    Mark,

    Not to be a lawyer or anything, but the story is confused. It says it is based on a change of regulation in the US Code. The US Code does not have regulations; it has statutes. The Pentagon does not get to make up its own statutes; Congress does that. This may be a terrible change. I haven’t thought it through enough to have a conclusion, but if it is terrible, it’s Congress’ fault, not the Pentagon’s.

    • wlinden

      Completely correct. “The military” does not have the ability to amend the U.S. Code (or the Posse Comitatus Act), which is made up of acts of Congress.
      I guess the press does not get law either.

  • CharlesOConnell

    I don’t really dig this quasi-twitter format. Your strength is in fully explicating issues. The buzz-word zingers from the hostile comment camp are hardly worth your response–usually not even worth reading–but the short article format seems to smoke them out of the woodwork. I’d rather read fewer articles with more meat.

  • Elmwood

    Support the troops or else!

  • Chesire11

    Ummm…not quite. The rule revision allows military commanders acting in support of law enforcement authorities to act independently of the Commander in Chief if local authorities were inadequate to coordinate a response to a crisis and it was impossible to obtain authorization from the POTUS. This doesn’t tighten presidential control over the military, it actually loosens it.

    Also, the author of the article incorrectly describes this as a change to the US Code made by the military. The military does not have authority to change the US Code – only the Congress possesses that authority. What was revised were the rules which describe how the DoD would go about implementing the existing law.

    He also ominously invokes the Kent State massacre as an instance of “federal troops” being “deployed for domestic support.” Unfortunately, the soldiers who fired on the students at Kent State were members of the Ohio National Guard not “federal troops.”

    As a matter of general policy intended to save time and my blood pressure, I tend to stop reading articles at the second egregious factual error, and dismiss the author’s judgement as “suspect.”


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