Goodbye Liberty, So Long Habeas Corpus, Catch Ya Later Constitution, Howdy Indefinite Detention.

Freedom!Goodbye, Liberty. So Long, Habeas Corpus. Catch Ya Later, Constitution, Howdy, Indefinite Detention. And hello, good old Brave New America, home of those who have forgotten what it means — and what it takes — to be truly free. The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, S. 1867, passed the Senate on December 1. This is the bill that includes language calling the U.S. a military battlefield and pretty much suspends habeas corpus for, well, all of us. Hear about it on the news? No? Imagine that. (Really, when was the last time you heard any truly important news on the news?) See how your senators voted.

Latest Title: National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012
Sponsor: Sen Levin, Carl [MI] (introduced 11/15/2011)      Cosponsors (None)
Related Bills: H.R.1540
Latest Major Action: 12/1/2011 Passed/agreed to in Senate. Status: Passed Senate with amendments by Yea-Nay. 93 – 7. Record Vote Number: 218.
Latest Action: 12/1/2011 See also H.R. 1540.
[Quoted from with the addition of the link to H.R. 1540 which was not provided in the quoted material.]

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4 thoughts on “Goodbye Liberty, So Long Habeas Corpus, Catch Ya Later Constitution, Howdy Indefinite Detention.

  1. Calling the U.S. a “military battlefield” gives the federal government virtually unlimited power and leaves each and every citizen with no legal recourse at all, no rights, none. I’m not sure what’s difficult about seeing this as a horrible direction for our country to take. Homeland Security already talked about pro-life activists (like me) and tea-party members (like me) and “right-wing Christians” (like me, I suppose, though right-wing is a political term and not a religious one) being “terrorists”. What I see developing is a pattern that I hoped I’d never see in America, of all places.


    1. I didn’t say I thought it was a good idea. My comment was more of a general observation that there two diametrically opposed goals that need to balance:

      1) Refraining from tampering with civil liberties
      2) Effective defense from terrorism, both foreign AND domestic

      Every time a step is taken (like the above), libertarians are quick to point out the potential for abuse by the government. And they are right, of course. Allowing the government certain powers doesn’t mean it will use them effectively. But at the same time, if we keep the government’s hands tied behind its back, how do we expect to effectively deal with terrorism?


      1. Can you point to a power that has been given the government of which it has not availed itself? And my point is that this move was not taken for some other reason but might be abused the way I indicated, but that the move was made in order to abuse it. That is the aim. Hence what I said in my original post. Too many people in this country have forgotten (or never knew) what it means and what it takes to be free. Which is why you and I are seeing our freedom vanish before our eyes. (Well, the freedom that government can affect, anyway. There is a freedom that no man can touch, that no one can take away from another. That freedom has to be surrendered voluntarily.)

        Edited to say: Btw, just to make this clear, I am not a Libertarian. Libertarians annoy me. The word “libertarian” annoys me. I also am not a Republican or a Democrat, though I used to vote Democrat and I have voted Republican. I vote according to my Catholic faith and my conscience which I have carefully formed in the faith, and am still forming in the faith. There is no political party to which I can give my allegiance because I don’t trust any of them to do what is right. I do not put my faith in humankind.

        I put my faith in God where faith belongs.


  2. Stepping back to the big picture, this is a very difficult issue. Makes me glad it’s not my job to run the world. On the one hand, I absolutely agree that our civil liberties need to be respected. On the other hand, I see how they need to establish the legal framework to go after domestic terrorists. Essentially, these domestic terrorists declare themselves enemy combatants from a Geneva Conventions perspective, but there are still huge legal hurdles to actually DOING anything about them. Overall, it’s one of those areas where I know what I don’t like, but I’m not sure what I would do to actually address the issue.


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