Tea Partiers May Need the ACLU Soon

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It seems that
our representatives in Washington want Americans to know that, instead
of studying the ideas of the Founding Fathers on the appropriate
way governments should treat people, the DC ignoramuses have taken
on the wisdom of the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. And, ironically,
many people in the Tea Party movement who have been supporting Bush
war policies may be the ones regretting such support.

The most recent
examples of our leaders rushing to violate our liberty in the name
of fighting terrorism or other government-caused problems include
Senator Joe Lieberman's legislation
to remove citizenship from suspected terrorists or terrorism abettors,
and a proposal
from Sen. Lindsay Graham and Sen. Charles Schumer to force all Americans
to have a biometric ID card that would include embedded information
such as fingerprints, etc. Because of the short-sightedness that
has been common in Washington for over a century, the Founders'
belief in the Presumption of Innocence and Due Process now seems
to be an anachronism.

This past decade's
war on terrorism has become an unwitting invitation for the government's
camel to completely barge in the tent, as the policies that the
Bush Administration put in place can be used by subsequent
administrations
for dubious purposes, the prevention of which
is why the American Founders wrote the Declaration of Independence
and the U.S. Constitution.

The Bush war
policies have given President Obama too much unchecked power. This
includes a perversion of the rule of law that is supposed to restrict
the State from curtailing individual rights. Consequently, the artificial
notion of u201Cbattlefield rules,u201D in which rights may be curtailed
by agents of the State in the name of war, combined with the globalizing
of the war on terrorism, in which the battlefield has extended to
include all territories, have disintegrated the concept of national
sovereignty as well as erased the protection of individuals from
State aggression.

For example,
the Bush policies including the Patriot
Act
, warrantless surveillance, denial of due process, assassinations
of suspected terrorists including Americans, extraordinary rendition,
and indefinite detention,
were short-sighted policies and may in fact be used to suppress
opposition to the U.S. government, rather than to prevent actual
terrorism.

Most worrisome
is that so many people in the government and the media have been
referring to the apprehension or execution of u201Cterrorists,u201D when
really referring to those our government has accused
of engaging in or supporting terrorism, without evidence brought
forth. That is troubling because in many cases officials knowingly
had apprehended and held totally
innocent
terrorism suspects, some of whose apprehension and
detention were based
on false confessions
by others as a result of torture or financial
payments.

And Lieberman's
proposal
to remove citizenship from terrorism suspects would mean an individual's
fate would be in the hands of Obama, CIA agents, career bureaucrats,
and foreign governments. But should we really trust the judgment
of someone as creepy as President Obama? And do we really want CIA
agents to have the power to decide who should live or die, without
trial?

200 years after
the American Founders wrote a Constitution
with rules for what the agents of the State may or may not do, Americans
have been supporting policies with too much blind
faith
in the judgment of government and military
officials
.

Another problem
is the false
notion
that the inalienable rights of the individual only apply
to u201CAmerican citizens.u201D The Declaration
of Independence
, however, is quite clear. It does not mention
u201Conly Americans.u201D Those rights to life and liberty are inherent
in all human beings. The rights of each individual to one's own
life and liberty are inherent rights, and include the right to be
free from the aggression of others and the right to be presumed
innocent and left alone. We just have those rights as human beings,
and the Declaration
of Independence
merely recognizes that.

We must be
concerned about these war policies, because the history of the past
century has consisted of suppression of individual rights by regimes
of fascist and Marxist ideologies, to which Obama
clearly subscribes.
Such regimes would not tolerate a u201CTea Partyu201D movement.

It is ironic
that ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis, who stands for the Obama
agenda
of socialist redistribution of wealth and fascist takeovers
of entire industries, as well as one intrusion after another into
the private lives of all Americans, expressed
her irrational concern of her fellow u201Cyoung, Democratic socialistsu201D
being rounded up into u201Cinternment camps.u201D Lewis is frightened by
the Tea Party movement, people who have been peacefully expressing
their legitimate protestations of an out-of-control, overreaching
and invasive government — people merely trying to protect
themselves
from the aggression of the State.

Rational Americans
should be much more concerned about federal administration officials
such as regulatory czar Cass Sunstein, who proposes to u201Cinfiltrateu201D
Internet
sites and chat rooms as a means of controlling public
opinion, and Solicitor General Elena Kagan who has
said that
freedom of speech u201Cdepends upon a categorical balancing
of the value of the speech against its societal costsu201D (i.e. government-approved
speech), and who has been supportive of President Obama's ever-expanding
executive powers including detaining or assassinating individuals
without trial.

Conservatives
and Tea Partiers need to be cautious in supporting policies such
as detaining
indefinitely or assassinating Americans suspected — not convicted,
but suspected — of participating in u201Cterroristu201D or other criminal
activities, in the name of fighting terrorism or any other societal
threat, especially when we have public officials such as Homeland
Security chief Janet Napolitano and her DHS explicitly
declaring
u201Cright-wing extremists,u201D u201Canti-governmentu201D types,
and people opposed to ObamaCare as a threat to national security.
Beware of people like Speaker Pelosi and others who have referred
to Tea Party protesters as acting seditiously
against the government. These officials are literally viewing Tea
Partiers and conservatives as the u201Cterrorists.u201D

The Obama Left
may use such Bush-imposed policies based on presumption of guilt
and without due process to serve their own political agenda, which
could result in very negative consequences for members of the Tea
Party movement, and all Americans. And if there will be an economic
crisis even worse than the Great Depression as some
people predict
, and if the Obama Administration calls for martial
law
, then you will see greater abuse of government and police
power, especially if law enforcement duties are shared by members
of AmeriCorps,
ACORN, S.E.I.U.
and other pro-Obama unions and flunkies.

The Bush anti-terrorism
policies were policies of short-sightedness and expediency that
did not take into account their long-term consequential effects
on liberty. Given monopolistic control over protecting the country
from terrorism, officials do not have a competitive incentive to
provide actual quality service of protection. Because of this, decisions
are political, rather than practical and moral. Americans need to
recognize this, and see how the compulsory nature of having to use
this one government-run
service is impractical and dangerous. It would be wise to reject
the Big Government socialism and internationalism of our current
Homeland Security police and military bureaucracy and consider more
practical alternatives
that don't violate liberty, and that would be accountable to
law and to markets
rather than to political interests.

Eventually,
thanks to the Bush Administration and the Obama extremists,
we may discover how a more severe threat to our liberty and our
security is not Islamic terrorism, but our own government.

Americans may
very well learn the hard way that the Rule of Law is absolute, and
applies to all people, private citizens and military personnel,
businessmen and public officials, with no exceptions, war or not.

Scott
Lazarowitz [send him mail]
is a commentator and cartoonist at Reasonandjest.com.

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