by Norman Berdichevsky (April 2010) It Can't Happen Here was a best-selling satirical political novel by Sinclair Lewis published in 1935. It aroused considerable controversy when published and in the years leading up to World War II. The plot featured the account of a crusading newspaperman Doremus Jessup, struggling against the newly elected fascist regime of President Berzelius "Buzz" Windrip, a populist leader whom some observers on the political Right assumed was a parody of FDR while others, particularly on the political Left rejected the possibility that a “popular” leader of the Democratic Party could possibly lead the country into a Fascist regime. more>>>
There is no doubt in my mind that many of Obama's puppeteers, those who pulled his strings while he was groomed, took many hints from the past to bring him to power.
One only needs to examine who helped pay for his education, and who helped introduce him into the political arena to know wherein many of his ideas arose.
Ultimately, those who cheat power from the individual always use similar techniques of trickery, such as false altruism, and protecting the common man.
The rights of the individual must always have primacy over the rights of the masses, for if individual rights are protected, so are the rights of the masses. It is that simple.
As soon as one violates the rights of the individual, they break universal law and must be overturned.
We have many examples from the past from which we can learn, and this article effectively points out some of them.
9 Apr 2010 Vladdi
Both Sales-Puppets (McCain and mObamaD) are angling for this already - "dissenters" = traitors, and can be jailed indefinitely w/o being mirandized, and w/o having any access to lawyers, forever, if the Pres says so:
Since the establishment media is convinced that tea party members, 9/11 truthers, libertarians, Ron Paul supporters, and basically anyone with a dissenting political opinion is a likely domestic terrorist, they should be celebrating the fact that a new bill would allow the government to detain such people as “enemy belligerents” indefinitely and without trial based on their “suspected activity”.
The “Enemy Belligerent, Interrogation, Detention, and Prosecution Act of 2010,” introduced by Senators John McCain and Joseph Lieberman on Thursday with little fanfare, “sets out a comprehensive policy for the detention, interrogation and trial of suspected enemy belligerents who are believed to have engaged in hostilities against the United States by requiring these individuals to be held in military custody, interrogated for their intelligence value and not provided with a Miranda warning,” writes the Atlantic’s Marc Ambinder.
The full bill can be read here: http://assets.theatlantic.com/static/mt/assets/politics/ARM10090.pdf
The bill does not distinguish between U.S. citizens and non-citizens, and states that “suspected belligerents” who are “considered a “high-value detainee” shall not be provided with a Miranda warning.”
A person is considered a “high value detainee” if they fulfil one of the following criteria.
(1) poses a threat of an attack on civilians or civilian facilities within the U.S. or U.S. facilities abroad; (2) poses a threat to U.S. military personnel or U.S. military facilities; (3) potential intelligence value; (4) is a member of al Qaeda or a terrorist group affiliated with al Qaeda or (5) such other matters as the President considers appropriate.
Now that the Southern Poverty Law Center and the federal government, via the MIAC report and innumerable other leaked documents, now consider virtually anyone with a dissenting opinion against the state as “posing a threat,” millions of peaceful American citizens could be swept up by this frightening dragnet of tyranny.
However, according to the bill, an individual doesn’t even have to pose a threat to be snatched, detained and interrogated – they can merely be deemed to be of “potential intelligence value” or come under the vague and sweeping mandate of “such other matters as the President considers appropriate”.
This last designation hands Obama dictator powers to have any American citizen kidnapped, detained, and interrogated on a whim.
The only proviso that even hints at some form of check or balance is the measure that states, “The High-Value Detainee Interrogation Team must make a preliminary determination whether the detainee is an unprivileged enemy belligerent within 48 hours of taking detainee into custody.”
“The High-Value Detainee Interrogation Team must submit its determination to the Secretary of Defense and the Attorney General after consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The Secretary of Defense and the Attorney General make a final determination and report the determination to the President and the appropriate committees of Congress. In the case of any disagreement between the Secretary of Defense and the Attorney General, the President will make the determination,” states the bill.
“Indefinite detention flies in the face of American values and violates this country’s commitment to the rule of law,” states Laura W. Murphy, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office.
Of course, such positions from the ACLU as well as Amnesty International will only be used as grist for the neo-con propaganda mill about how the bill ought to be passed in order to avoid being “soft on terrorists,” a piece of spin still being swallowed whole by millions of conservatives who are blissfully unaware of the fact that the apparatus of the war on terror is now being aimed squarely at politically active American citizens.
“Torture, indefinite imprisonment, secret trials and limited staged hearings are the stuff of cheap dictatorships,” writes Ian McColgin. “They are the sort of idiocy we scorned in the Soviets, the Koreans and the Vietnamese. It is astonishing that we have senators and citizens even discussing this bill which is not a capitulation to terrorism – it’s the triumph of terrorism.”
1 May 2013 Brennan Barrington
Your assertions seem reasonable at first, but a brief look at the facts shows that they completely misrepresent the degree and extent of Obama's actions.
Unlike Buzz Windrup, Obama does not, nor has he ever, proposed total nationalization or even partial nationalization of financial institutions, natural resources (with the exception of those needed for government revenue and keeping the air breathable and water drinkable), or means of production. His proposals would be laughed at by any genuine socialists or Communists. Your discussion of Windrup's second point provides no evidence whatsoever that there is any valid comparison to be made, which I suspect is because none exists. Obama has never proposed nationalization of unions, protectionist policies, or agricultural workers. I challenge you to find a single statement of his in which he advocates this, in proper context.
I will grant you that Obama supports higher taxes on the wealthy. This is because they have been way too low for way too long and there is a massive federal debt to pay off, which was well on its way to being paid off before Bush took over, lowered taxes, and started unnecessary and poorly managed wars. If you want to talk about tyranny, I would say that the larger and better equipped our military, the more danger there is of tyranny and the more easily a dictator can rule; yet the terms of the sequester, backed by Obama, make larger percentage cuts in the military budget than anything else. The money supply should always be increased in recession and decreased in inflation, which is taught in Economics 101.
The Tea Party movement is an "astroturf" movement. Their chief donors are wealthy and powerful individuals defending their interests, not those of ordinary US citizens. As for an "enemies" list, naturally the administration would consider those people "enemies", as they advocate things with which the administration disagrees, making them enemies by definition. This does not mean (unlike Nixon and co.) that Obama's staff tries to dishonestly discredit, intimidate, or hurt these people (Nixon and co. did all of these).
I greatly object to your use of "added another S", thus implying that the other parts never went away. The simple facts that over 90 percent of African-Americans voted for Obama in the 2008 election, and every minority group is more Democratic than Republican, indicates that these groups believe Democrats support their interests, proving that the Democrats are not by any stretch of the imagination racist any more.
I also object to your complaint about President Lincoln. It is clearly stated in the Constitution that the writ of habeas corpus may be abolished by Presidential order in an "Invasion or Insurrection". As the whole basis of the Civil War was that the South was engaged in an illegal and unconstitutional insurrection, Lincoln was perfectly justified in the suspension of the writ. I would also like to see you or your associates put a country back together that is falling apart, and see how you manage it. I suggest you read his speeches on the subject, as I found them quite rational (something which today's political rhetoric sorely lacks) and persuasive.
As for the health care law, I'd like to hear your ideas before you start criticizing Obama's. I would also like to note that Obama is definitely not forming paramilitary organizations, arresting and torturing his political opponents, or shooting Secret Service people on suspicion. Until I see those things happening, I will consider a comparison between Buzz Windrup and Obama utterly absurd hokum, not to mention offensive and irresponsible.
13 May 2013 Jay H
If I hadn't read this book before I'd probably believe you. Buzz Windrip creates a fascist state exactly like Germany and Italy. That was the point of the book coming out at that time. Fascism, if I'm not mistaken, is on the far right.
Right after he gives his 15 platforms, Lewis talks about how each platform was used specifically to scare big business into supporting him.