Third Party & Independents Archives

Farewell Posse Comitatus

What has brought our society to the point where we actually consider the suggestion that the military be allowed to operate within our own borders to force our own citizens to comply with the latest demands from the White House?

If, as the leader of a group, you have an idea which you'd like everyone to go along with, you need to make everyone think your idea is necessary. How one can go about this is by creating a problem and waiting for it to grow large enough that your group demands change. Then you can present your idea as a solution to that problem, provided you thought ahead enough to cause a problem which your idea would seem to solve. The group cooperates with your idea because the problem needs to be fixed, and voila - change implemented. Not only was your idea implemented, but your people asked you for it!

This entire Katrina response scandal has been yet another perfect example of the government causing a problem, waiting for the the populace to demand a solution, then offering their own premeditated plan. This time, their plan is the destruction of the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878. From dojgov.net:

In a nutshell, this act bans the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines from participating in arrests, searches, seizure of evidence and other police-type activity on U.S. soil. The Coast Guard and National Guard troops under the control of state governors are excluded from the act.

The PCA was originally proposed by southerners who had seen the results of a 15 year long occupation of the south by the US military following the Civil War. Not only do we have history books filled with reasons to keep the military from policing our own citizens, but simply stated, our military is not trained to enforce law and make arrests, etc. Not to mention, we have seen examples of what happens when military training is applied to typical law enforcement situations. I am terribly concerned for our future as a nation if we give the President or the Dept of Homeland Security the authority to use the US military to forcibly evacuate cities, enforce martial law or whatever else they might want. Just consider the possiblities - control of the military + a souped-up immenent domain (which was granted, in part, to the DHS by the REAL ID Act) = the possibility of great tyranny.

So, upon what basis am I stipulating that this is a government created situation? Some have argued, and still argue, that FEMA's role in the joke which was Katrina disaster relief was simply incompetence. I, for one, do not believe that all those with government authority are that far below average intelligence. What kind of an idiot does it take to refuse firefighters, supply trucks, diesel fuel, the Red Cross, morticians, citizens offering aid, generators, and first responders? I would argue that not using your own resources to aid in this situation could be labeled as incompetence, but specifically preventing others from using their resources to help is obstruction and certainly more malicious.

So, the question is, how can we possibly believe that all of this is mere incompetence, specifically when the aftermath brings requests for further erosion of the protections of our civil liberties?

Posted by Andrew Parker at September 27, 2005 2:04 PM