The dismissals over President Obama’s latest Executive Order for National Defense Resources Preparedness as just “an update” miss the point. We’ve hit a nerve with this story with almost 60,000 views this morning. People are upset, angry and disappointed. Why? Because a normally arcane proclamation is seeing the light of day, exposing the tip of a vast “shadow government” of black budgets and rules that go beyond anything spelled out by the Constitution.
Ed Morrissey at Hot Air played down the significance of this order :
“In fact, that’s almost entirely what it is. The original EO dealing with national defense resources preparedness was issued in 1939 (EO 8248) according to the National Archives. It has been superseded a number of times, starting in 1951 by nearly every President through Bill Clinton, and amended twice by George W. Bush. Barack Obama may be arrogant, and the timing of this release might have looked a little strange, but this is really nothing to worry about at all.”
Nothing to see here, move along. Actually, Ed, this is a HUGE deal and it’s not going to go away that quickly.
As World Net Daily intoned “If someone wants to make the argument that this is an expansion of presidential powers, then do so based on actual language,” warns Jacobson.
Professor Jacobson is correct, this is really a minor expansion of these powers. The article goes on to point out that:
As it turns out, Obama’s executive order is nearly identical to EO 12919, issued by President Clinton on June 7, 1994, which itself was an amendment to EO 10789, issued in 1958 by President Eisenhower, and which in fact, was later amended by EO 13286, issued in 2003 by George W. Bush.
What’s the REAL story, as the WND email asks? The story is about the power of the internet as a media force. People are hopping mad because this information is now openly available. In the past, none of this ever saw the light of day. They are waking up and they aren’t happy about what they are seeing. It’s a similar reaction to when people find out that the Federal Reserve is a private business, not a part of the U.S. Government.
Let’s look at order #12919 mentioned in the WND story. When Bill Clinton was president in 1994, the internet barely existed and the government hadn’t yet set up web sites to publish this sort of proclamation. People got their news from the NY Times, the Wall St. Journal and the major TV networks…let’s see what kind of coverage this got. A search of the NY Times since 1851 turned up…ZERO…for a search of Clinton “executive order” 12919. The major TV networks? This wouldn’t even make it into Walter Cronkite’s “circular file”. These orders barely merit a mention, even today.
Yet they have teeth. Go ask any Japanese American who was interned during WWII and had their property stolen. That was Executive Order 9066 issued by FDR.
The real problem is that a “shadow government” has been established by these executive orders and now you know about it. It’s being exposed. People now realize that they are basically property that can be disposed of at the whim of the president.
Don’t believe me, let’s have a look in the comments to the stories downplaying this order, the WND commenters got right to the point this morning:
dumbboy: BALONEY! Why does it have the word “peacetime” all over it. I can understand during war or “real” national emergencies, but not peacetime! Hey, Mr. Cornell Law (liberal) professor, good try, but some of us aren’t as dumb as you would like us to be! We know how to read and we can actually comprehend! Wonder who you voted for? Wonder where your campaign donations went? Nothing to worry about? Are you kiddin’ me? If it is nothing to worry about them why did Obama do it? You “know it all” guys really crack me up.
EdwinBuck: Calm yourselves, don’t worry, there’s nothing to fear. This is what these government types want to tell you. If you believe this government, shame on you. I have a question; WHAT IS THE FIRST DUTY OF ANY GOVERMENT? ANS: TO PROTECT ITSELF FROM THE PEOPLE. Look what’s happening in SYRIA? The Syrian Government is just protecting themselves from their own people. If you don’t think this government is doing the same thing, protecting itself from the very people they were sworn to protect. They will lie, cheat, steal and yes even commit murder to protect itself from their own people that they have stolen from.
People are starting to wake up now.
In case you were wondering here’s a long list of some of the other “Executive Orders” you might not be aware of that were collected by Harry Martin:
A Presidential Executive Order, whether Constitutional or not, becomes law simply by its publication in the Federal Registry. Congress is by-passed. Here are just a few Executive Orders that would suspend the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. These Executive Orders have been on record for nearly 30 years and could be enacted by the stroke of a Presidential pen:
EXECUTIVE ORDER 10990 allows the government to take over all modes of transportation and control of highways and seaports.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 10995 allows the government to seize and control the communication media.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 10997 allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 10998 allows the government to take over all food resources and farms.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11000 allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11001 allows the government to take over all health, education and welfare functions.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11002 designates the Postmaster General to operate a national registration of all persons.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11003 allows the government to take over all airports and aircraft, including commercial aircraft.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11004 allows the Housing and Finance Authority to relocate communities, build new housing with public funds, designate areas to be abandoned, and establish new locations for populations.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11005 allows the government to take over railroads, inland waterways and public storage facilities.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11051 specifies the responsibility of the Office of Emergency Planning and gives authorization to put all Executive Orders into effect in times of increased international tensions and economic or financial crisis.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 11310 grants authority to the Department of Justice to enforce the plans set out in Executive Orders, to institute industrial support, to establish judicial and legislative liaison, to control all aliens, to operate penal and correctional institutions, and to advise and assist the President.
Without Congressional approval, the President now has the power to transfer whole populations to any part of the country, the power to suspend the Press and to force a national registration of all persons. The President, in essence, has dictatorial powers never provided to him under the Constitution. The President has the power to suspend the Constitution and the Bill of Rights in a real or perceived emergency. Unlike Lincoln and Roosevelt, these powers are not derived from a wartime need, but from any crisis, domestic or foreign, hostile or economic. Roosevelt created extraordinary measures during the Great Depression, but any President faced with a similar, or lesser, economic crisis now has extraordinary powers to assume dictatorial status.
Many of the Executive Orders cited here have been on the books for over a quarter of a century and have not been applied. Therefore, what makes them more dangerous today than yesteryear? There has been a steady, consistent series of new Executive Orders, originating from President Richard Nixon and added to by Presidents Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter and George Bush that provide an ominous Orwellian portrait, the portrait of George Orwell’s 1984.
THE EROSION OF INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS
A series of Executive Orders, internal governmental departmental laws, unpassed by Congress, the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 and the Violent Crime Control Act of 1991, has whittled down Constitutional law substantially. These new Executive Orders and Congressional Acts allow for the construction of concentration camps, suspension of rights and the ability of the President to declare Martial Law in the event of a drug crisis. Congress will have no power to prevent the Martial Law declaration and can only review the process six months after Martial Law has been declared. The most critical Executive Order was issued on August 1, 1971. Nixon signed both a proclamation and Executive Order 11615. Proclamation No. 4074 states, “I hereby declare a national emergency”, thus establishing an economic crisis. That national emergency order has not been rescinded.
The crisis that changed the direction of governmental thinking was the anti-Vietnam protests. Fear that such demonstrations might explode into civil unrest, Executive Orders began to be created to allow extreme measures to be implemented to curtail the demonstrations. The recent Los Angeles riots after the Rodney King jury verdict only reinforced the government’s concern about potential civil unrest and the need to have an effective mechanism to curtail such demonstrations.
Here are the later Executive Orders:
- EXECUTIVE ORDER 11049 assigns emergency preparedness function to federal departments and agencies, consolidating 21 operative Executive Orders issued over a fifteen year period.
- EXECUTIVE ORDER 11921 allows the Federal Emergency Preparedness Agency to develop plans to establish control over the mechanisms of production and distribution, of energy sources, wages, salaries, credit and the flow of money in U.S. financial institution in any undefined national emergency. It also provides that when a state of emergency is declared by the President, Congress cannot review the action for six months.
- EXECUTIVE ORDER 12148 created the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that is to interface with the Department of Defense for civil defense planning and funding. An “emergency czar” was appointed. FEMA has only spent about 6 percent of its budget on national emergencies, the bulk of their funding has been used for the construction of secret underground facilities to assure continuity of government in case of a major emergency, foreign or domestic.
- EXECUTIVE ORDER 12656 appointed the National Security Council as the principal body that should consider emergency powers. This allows the government to increase domestic intelligence and surveillance of U.S. citizens and would restrict the freedom of movement within the United States and granted the government the right to isolate large groups of civilians. The National Guard could be federalized to seal all borders and take control of U.S. air space and all ports of entry. Many of the figures in the Iran-Contra scandal were part of this emergency contingent, including Marine Colonel Oliver North.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has broad powers in every aspect of the nation. General Frank Salzedo, chief of FEMA’s Civil Security Division stated in a 1983 conference that he saw FEMA’s role as a “new frontier in the protection of individual and governmental leaders from assassination, and of civil and military installations from sabotage and/or attack, as well as prevention of dissident groups from gaining access to U.S. opinion, or a global audience in times of crisis.”
The Violent Crime Control Act of 1991 provides additional powers to the President of the United States, allowing the suspension of the Constitution and Constitutional rights of Americans during a “drug crisis”. It provides for the construction of detention camps, seizure of property, and military control of populated areas. This, teamed with the Executive Orders of the President, enables Orwellian prophecies to rest on whoever occupies the White House. The power provided by these “laws” allows suspension of the Constitution and the rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights during any civil disturbances, major demonstrations and strikes and allows the military to implement government ordered movements of civilian populations at state and regional levels, the arrest of certain unidentified segments of the population, and the imposition of Martial Law.
When the Constitution of the United States was framed it placed the exclusive legislative authority in the hands of Congress and with the President. Article I, Section 1 of the United States Constitution is concise in its language, “All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” That is no longer true. The Bill of Rights protected Americans against loss of freedoms. That is no longer true. The Constitution provided for a balanced separation of powers. That is no longer applicable.
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