Thursday, October 06, 2005

Is Posse Comitatus dead? 
In a story in The Washington Times, George W Bush is quoted, not for the first time, as proposing regular army involvement in domestic issues:
President Bush said yesterday that he was concerned about the potential for an avian flu outbreak and suggested empowering the Pentagon to quarantine parts of the nation should they become infected.
"If we had an outbreak somewhere in the United States, do we not then quarantine that part of the country, and how do you then enforce a quarantine?" he said during a Rose Garden press conference.
"It's one thing to shut down airplanes; it's another thing to prevent people from coming in to get exposed to the avian flu," he added. "And who best to be able to effect a quarantine? One option is the use of a military that's able to plan and move."
I'm not usually too prone to conspiracy theories, but here's one for you - The Bush II administration has sent much of the National Guard out of the country (in place of regular army troops). So the local militias (i.e. the various state Guard units) are unavailable, leaving only regular armed forces available for the domestic duties the Guard would normally take care of. But the regular army is under the command of the President, while The Guard is, normally, under state control. So my paranoid fantasy is that this is just another toe in the door, another brick in the edifice the right wing is building to seize permanent control of this country. Am I nuts? Or maybe those guys in Montana aren't as crazy as I always thought ...

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