Reader Feedback 05/01/2007

 Some reader emails regarding our article "Expanding Executive Power":

As you sit safely at your desk lamenting your loss of freedom, think about the fact that you can sit there safely. Think about no major internal terrorist attacks, thank God, since 9/11 and of the president's responsibility to try to prevent such attacks. And while you're at it, consider the significant change in threat to the country given the enemy's great reliance on massive terrorism--something this country has never experienced before. Then you might think about a "grasp of power" that includes appropriating military command in the time of war, something the Democrats are trying to do primarily in order to increase their political power. That's a lot to think about.

(Dan G.)

***

I certainly share your concerns about increasing executive/police/ military power. The problem is that the public has bought into a faulty notion, that the executive/police/military can protect them from and can prevent crime and/or terrorism. I know from experience (8.5 years as an assistant prosecutor) that this notion is erroneous. We can only protect ourselves and each other. In part, this can and should be through a partnership with local police. Most of us who live in smaller towns know many of the local police officers by first name. 

We can and should expect our police force to respond quickly to reports of crime, to use professional methods to try to solve those crimes, and to try to arrest the guilty. But police cannot prevent the crimes in the first place without society suffering a total loss of freedom, and that is unacceptable. The Republicrat solution of more police and bureaucratic agencies, like the Department of Homeland Insecurity, ensures that potential terrorists will be protected. This is because these agents put a premium on keeping their "intelligence" secret. 

Ironically, the way to prevent terrorism is to use our openness to share information with the public. Most crimes are solved by private citizens alerting police to criminals' actions. Yes, terrorists would find out what police know about them. But we should not underestimate their ability to escape detection--they are undoubtedly taking steps to make themselves less visible to law enforcement. I say, let the terrorists know that they are being watched by more people than Homeland Security employees punching the 8-4 time clock. The more people who watch, the safer we are.

(Rich M.)

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I'm a retired US Army Intelligence Officer and I'm as appalled and worried as you are about the Bush Administration's assault on the civil liberties of the American people. I agree with all that you say with respect to the stealth tactics employed by the Administration to roll back the long-established and well-established matters of law, i.e. habeas corpus, the Insurrection Act, and the Posse Comitatus Act.

However, your assertion that soldiers are taught to ignore the United States Constitution and the country's laws is ignorant, misleading, offensive, and completely negates the validity--of an otherwise credible warning--to those who would otherwise embrace your message, the US military and government civilians who all take the following oath of service:

I, {insert name here}, do solemnly swear, (or affirm), that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God. (Note that the last sentence is not required to be said if the speaker has a personal or moral objection).

You should also be advised that all members of National Guard--note the word National--take the same oath. All of us in the military and federal government take the issue of separation of federal and state powers very seriously and as a general rule are just as horrified by this Administration as you are.

(Joseph M. L.)

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You liberal writers who have to put out a column for "What We Now Know," Kitco, and other forums might possibly have a wake-up call by the Virginia Tech killer's past few years.

Instead of ridiculing the efforts of law enforcers, you and others like your ACLU style have to take some blame for the failure to get that SOB off the VT campus two or more years ago. Failure to prosecute felonies just leads to an ever-increasingly permissive society. This is no longer a nation of laws, so much as it is a nation of law breakers.

(J.C.E.)

***

Knowing the addictions of human nature to power and control, I fear our government is on the slippery slope of no return. In the course of human events, as far as I know, no global power has ever reversed itself and returned the sovereignty to its people. There will be spurts of common sense and rationalism, but like ripples on a pond, they too will cease. We are becoming the "masses" where individuality is immersed in the pond of sameness for the sake of a "peaceful" existence. Remember, don't rock the boat, you will cause ripples on the pond and that, my friend, is unforgivable.

(Gary)





Posted 05-01-2007 4:29 PM by Doug Casey