Friday, October 27, 2006

Martial Law and the Boiling Frog Syndrome

What does martial law and a frog have in common? Answer: Depends on what murky waters you are in...

The Bush administration has been slowly turning up the heat since 2001 and we stand to suffer the fate of the boiling frog who is so cold blooded he can't tell when the heat is on until it is too late...

The definition of martial law as it appears on Wikipedia is :
"Martial law is the system of rules that takes effect (usually after a formal declaration) when a military authority takes control of the normal administration of justice.

Martial law is instituted most often when it becomes necessary to favor the activity of military authorities and organizations, usually for urgent unforeseen needs, and when the normal institutions of justice either cannot function or could be deemed too slow or too weak for the new situation..."

Does it sound familiar? That is exactly the logic used by Bush to ram through our docile Congress the recent "Military Commissions Act" of 2006.

Our venerable Vice President was interviewed the other day by one of his cheerleaders, Scott Hennen. Here is how that scary interview went:

"Q I've heard from a lot of listeners -- that's what we do for a living, talk to good folks in the Heartland every day -- and I've talked to as many who want an increased military presence in Iraq as want us out, which seems to be the larger debate, at least coming from the left -- cut and run, get out of there. One fax said, when you talk to the Vice President, ask him when shock and awe is coming back to Iraq. Let's finish the job once and for all.

And terrorist interrogations and that debate is another example. And I've had people call and say, please, let the Vice President know that if it takes dunking a terrorist in water, we're all for it, if it saves American lives. Again, this debate seems a little silly given the threat we face, would you agree?

THE VICE PRESIDENT: I do agree. And I think the terrorist threat, for example, with respect to our ability to interrogate high value detainees like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, that's been a very important tool that we've had to be able to secure the nation. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed provided us with enormously valuable information about how many there are, about how they plan, what their training processes are and so forth, we've learned a lot. We need to be able to continue that.

The Congress recently voted on this question of military commissions and our authority to continue the interrogation program. It passed both Houses, fortunately. The President signed it into law, but the fact is 177 Democrats in the House -- or excuse me, 162 Democrats in the House voted against it, and 32 out of 44 senators -- Democratic senators voted against it. We wouldn't have that authority today if they were in charge. That's a very important issue in this campaign.

Are we going to allow the executive branch to have the authority granted and authorized by the Congress to be able to continue to collect the intelligence we need to defend the nation.
Q Would you agree a dunk in water is a no-brainer if it can save lives?

THE VICE PRESIDENT: It's a no-brainer for me, but for a while there, I was criticized as being the Vice President "for torture." We don't torture. That's not what we're involved in. We live up to our obligations in international treaties that we're party to and so forth. But the fact is, you can have a fairly robust interrogation program without torture, and we need to be able to do that.

And thanks to the leadership of the President now, and the action of the Congress, we have that authority, and we are able to continue to program

Words have meaning and they do break bones... What we see here is a page torn out of the book of past and contemporary leaders elsewhere that we point fingers too and brand as "evil". I hope we jump out of the boiling water before our freedom is spent...

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Blogger Renegade Eye said...

The first point I'll make unequivally, we need to fight to regain democratic rights, that are being eroded. These measures are not short term, and can be used against innocent people.

I think martial law, is not the most accurate description. These laws have been established by politicians from both parties.

There is going to be an election in a few weeks. You don't have a curfew. You can roam the streets if you desire, and on and on.

Why I feel you are making a serious mistake; is historically not identifying enemies correctly, leads to fighting them incorrectly.

If Bush is leading us to martial law, what is the role of the Democrats. Many of the losses of civil liberties, were started under Clinton, after the Oklahoma bombing.

I think this post is an emotional response to the Bush administrations sleaziness. It lets Dems off the hook.

This is a good discussion. I had a similar one on my blog about fascism.

I have your blog on my blogroll.

2:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Dahlia;

It is amazing because I just posted something about martial laws on my blog. These laws are not accurate because Democrats and Republicans only share the same interests, and it is all about money and nothing about Americans. Aren't Americans supposed to elect a President for their own interest and not the other way around? Since Republicans are failing in Iraq, Democrats are going to do the opposite thing against Republicans, to stay the course in Iraq. For example I've always been warned and told by the french elite that John Kerry adviser is being considered tougher in foreign politics compared to the Bush administration, but I only care about Iraq in itself first, without help: bombing cities may allow economic entities to empoverish population so that the righteous (aka rightists) can spread their own agenda.

It is not all about religion, until somebody gets attacked. 911 attacks were not the direct answer against Iraq. Americans were cheated by the Bush administration, so Iraqis have the right to retaliate themselves as resistants since they are being invaded by an oppressor; then religion, as a FATWAH, has its whole right in the middle-east. Americans don't know between religion of politics (them) and politics of religions (me and other) because they think that attacking somebody from their cultural point of view is a fine idea.

I hope your ramadan was fine. I gave some money to poor people on my side although I am catholic with a muslim heart. Why? Because I can understand culture, and I can understand the respect of culture. I was at work even after sun dawn.

3:08 AM  
Blogger Dahlia said...

R-eye, thanks for comments. Yes, I did make these comments from deep emotion, however, that does not cloud the implication here. Saying that these laws were brought about by both parties does not negate that we are going down a slippery slope toward abrogation of our civil liberties. The fact that both parties are complicit does not allieviate the matter. In fact, it makes it even more serious. The Military Commissions act, the Patriot Act, the eavesdropping by the NSA, it is all moving us toward a police state. That is martial law

4:07 PM  
Blogger Renegade Eye said...

I know the laws are going in a dangerous direction, and the Bill of Rights is being undermined.

Most Americans are going on with their lives, as usual. If martial law is developing, where is the protest? Why don't they even know it is happening?

These are not the conditions of martial law. There is going to be an election, where you can chose between tweedle-dee and tweedle-dumb. I think the system is more repressive, but still bourgeoise democracy.

During the Vietnam war, I was an antiwar leader. My name was found in the CIA files, as being spied on, by the senate commitee investigating the CIA spying on US citizens in the 1970s. I had my picture in Life Magazine over that.

You can trace things back to The Smith Act, the McCarthy era, spying on US civilians during the Vietnam war, Watergate, contragate etc. The system as normal. It has a mean streak.

I'm glad politiques told me about this blog. Regards.

11:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are welcome Renegade Eyes :)

On Saturday I went to the democratic headquarters in Las Vegas. My wife works as a political activist for the Dems of Vegas. That said I am not even Dem or Republican but Al Gore is going to be in Vegas on Weds. I don't think I will met him though, unless I take a day off at work. We'll see what happens and I'll play it by ears :)

I've been in the US for 6 years now. During all this time, I was not allowed to live the country, well I could have left the country, but I would have not been able to go back to the US because of the immigration laws. This is why I contacted the french interior ministry lately (Nicolas Sarkozy) and they have asked the US government why I was not allowed to leave the US to go back in my native country. The US does not even respect any basic rights. I've never done anything wrong in my life, never ever, I am a peaceful person, and I feel prejudiced. I don't know if it has something to do with the war in Iraq or anything else, but I know I will fight for my own rights as a human being :)
That said I don't want to be associated with the war in Iraq, and if they don't like it, then too bad. Killing people in the name of freedom is wrong. I was born in France, I understand what the word "resistance" means, even if most of my brother inlaws worked for the US army and are still working for the US army abroad for the Pentagon.

2:30 PM  
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2:57 PM  
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2:27 PM  

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