Chad Perrin: SOB

17 October 2006

end of an era

Filed under: Liberty — apotheon @ 10:29

Today was the day George W. Bush would sign the Military Commissions Act into law, eliminating habeas corpus for many and turning it into a mockery of itself for the rest. People can now be disappeared by the government with legal impunity on the streets of our cities, according to this law. Unless we see it overturned in court or repealed by Congress after the 7 November election, this day — 17 October 2006 — will likely be marked in history as the day that freedom died in the United States of America.

If we cannot rescue it in days to come, liberty will surely return in another form. I just hope it’s within my lifetime.

5 Comments

  1. Out of curiosity, how much do you think this will be abused in the near future, and how long do you think before the egregious abuse begins to happen?

    We’ve been having a lot of people screaming that if you’re innocent you have nothing to worry about, and claim the government won’t abuse the power it has. This is probably true enough for the moment, no one’s dissapearing for calling the president an idiot, but given time unchecked growth of power will get us there. Out of purely selfish concern, I wonder if it’ll get intolerably bad within my lifetime.

    Comment by Mina — 17 October 2006 @ 11:25

  2. I’ve also just noticed that the google ads on your page don’t break scrolling anymore (when using the mouse wheel)- I was going to bitch about that at some point, but it looks like you fixed it before I did. Keep up the good work ;)

    Comment by Mina — 17 October 2006 @ 11:28

  3. Out of curiosity, how much do you think this will be abused in the near future, and how long do you think before the egregious abuse begins to happen?

    That’s a tough call. The opportunity for abuse is kinda limitless, as long as it doesn’t get tossed out in court or otherwise rendered inapplicable. The abuse of it will probably gradually increase over time, however, rather than start in serious earnest with a bang. Of course, it’s already being abused to some extent more than most people realize, because the US government as of the 17th is no longer in violation of law for things it has been doing for some time now.

    I rather suspect that they’ll stay away from too obvious uses of the ability to detain citizens for up to a year until such time as they can get something else passed that puts citizens effectively on the same footing as non-citizens. I expect a second attempt to draft and send to Congress some of the provisions of the aborted Domestic Security Enhancement Act, very soon, if we get another two years of Republican-dominated Congress this November.

    We’ve been having a lot of people screaming that if you’re innocent you have nothing to worry about, and claim the government won’t abuse the power it has.

    Such arguments are ridiculous in reference to a suspension of habeas corpus. The whole point of habeas corpus is to ensure that the innocent are not made to suffer under the law. Remove it, and there’s nothing to stop the inattentive or malicious from acting unethically. The only practical purpose for suspension of habeas corpus is to violate the rights of the innocent. That’s it. That’s the only purpose there could possibly be, considering habeas corpus is absolutely nothing but a safeguard against that happening. People who really believe this isn’t a problem for individual rights are either lying to themselves or convinced of a different definition of “problem” than the one with which I’m familiar.

    I’ve also just noticed that the google ads on your page don’t break scrolling anymore (when using the mouse wheel)

    Good! Um. It was broken?

    Err, I mean, yeah, I fixed it! I rule!

    Thanks again for thoughtful comments.

    Comment by apotheon — 18 October 2006 @ 12:56

  4. […] SOB: Scion Of Backronymics » end of an era A fellow-mourner (tags: liberty habeascorpus) Share and Enjoy:These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. […]

    Pingback by links for 2006-10-19 -- Chip’s Quips — 18 October 2006 @ 07:18

  5. […] end of an era: Apotheon writes of the suspension of habeas corpus. May God or whatever higher power you believe in, reach down to save us now and bring about the apocalypse as it will surely be better then the suspension of this essential part of the Constitution. […]

    Pingback by Ameliorations — 24 October 2006 @ 11:53

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