The NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) handed the President the power to employ the military in arresting and imprisoning indefinitely anyone he decided was a threat. No charges, no due process and no notice to anyone. No review, either. The general media did not think this merited reporting but those who paid attention to Congress spotted it. There was some small fuss, not much. This was a very bipartisan action.
The NDAA comes up every year to fund the following years’ Pentagon programs; it’s a primary funding vehicle for the military. It is before Congress again now, as the NDAA 2014 this time, with the President’s extraordinary and unconstitutional (we’re supposed to have due process and court supervision, right?) powers on display for those few paying attention but the media are onto more important news, such as the Zimmerman trial. This latest iteration of the law remains largely a non-event.
This time, reacting to pressures from constituents or from more patriotic concerns of their own, some Representatives proposed some small limits on the President’s power to send the troops after anyone he pleased without recourse or informing anyone. You may obtain details from the linked report. Having read it leaves me with the idea that it may still not be wise to come to our President’s notice negatively, especially if you are short of security. With drones now flying domestically of course, that sort of protection may fall short on occasion. Who’d know?
The bill remains in Congress so more may be added, along with the inevitable pork or perhaps the amendments, or parts of them, will disappear, we’ll have to see what comes out. As Ben Franklin put it: “No man’s life, liberty or fortune is safe while our legislature is in session.” We see writers deploring our governments’ actions and omissions all the time, often with the idea that the Founders didn’t operate the way we do now and would be upset if they were to see us. Upset, maybe; surprised? I doubt it!
If you’re interested in your Fourth Amendment Constitutional rights (Pre-NDAA) you may wish to Google NDAA 2014 as it proceeds through your Congress to see what more your elected Representatives may do with and to it. Might be interesting. Maybe not as interesting as that Zimmerman trial, though. Yet…