Beware of new 60 minute laws after the Capitol Rebellion
The best protection against domestic terrorism is a reasonably satisfied citizenry.
Fences surrounding the United States Capitol are seen in Washington, DC on Thursday, February 25, 2021. (Photo by Matt McClain / The Washington Post via Getty Images)
The Capitol uprising was the result of the uncoordinated action of two politicians, each believed to be able to use political violence for personal ends. Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser, tolerant of BLM interference, promoted a culture that discouraged even the most justified use of force for fear of “optics,” while President Trump valued the antics of his supporters more than his obligation to faithfully execute the law .
The investigation that follows will hopefully rid us of the two, but there are already signs that their rash will lead to more malicious results. After the once popular television program that did so much to broaden the intellectual horizons of our weaker Solons, there will be a legislature known as the “60 Minute Legislature”.
The democratic response to September 11th, the last sensational event, resulted in two large and redundant civil bureaucracies, the Directorate of National Intelligence and the Ministry of Homeland Security. The first of these was seen as an unnecessary addition even by one of its first directors, John Negroponte. The new agency did little to diminish the power of the CIA, and its mission could have been accomplished through inter-agency meetings. The Department of Homeland Security, a burgeoning home office in the European sense, proved during Hurricane Katrina that it has no value. The main effect of its existence was to introduce a new level of bureaucratic scrutiny and downgrade the importance of the once competent emergency management office, the direction of which was bestowed as a negligible political throwaway.
The Secret Service, once deliberately separated from other federal law enforcement agencies at the Treasury Department to protect itself from a possible coup, was merged with other police agencies, some of which, like the DEA and BATF, had a bad reputation. Justice Jackson, as attorney general, persistently warned against the unification and expansion of federal law enforcement agencies, a belief that was later reinforced by his Nuremberg studies and which led him to label an excessive expansion of federal criminal justice as the greatest threat to U.S. survival of American democracy.
The Democrats were not alone in politically exploiting 9/11. The younger President Bush told a group of his “pioneer” fundraisers that terrorism was his political badge. A new Northern Command was set up in the Pentagon and its planned area of operation is the continental United States. His chilling possibilities are celebrated in the memoirs of former Defense Minister Rumsfeld and an Internet supplement to his tape.
After some politicians from both parties, including the Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin, created a burgeoning Home Office, they now seem to want at least one and maybe three domestic intelligence agencies like UK MI5, some of which were once supposed to be staff in the fall of the Wilson -Government in the UK have given in A proposed domestic intelligence law would create three new domestic intelligence gathering points, one each within the FBI, Justice Department and Department of Homeland Security, to better insure the regulatory detention of at least one of political factions.
However, it appears to be acknowledged that the FBI had sufficient advance notice about the January 6 demonstration. It was the will of its political masters to respond to this lack of intelligence. The FBI has the advantage of being an established agency with ingrained procedures and broader responsibilities. While its culture is not flawless, it has been chastised by the church committee and other investigations and reforms that Attorney General Levi initiated during the Ford administration.
The new agencies proposed will no doubt draw up watch lists and find acquaintances of the Proud Boys and others. Efforts are already being made to find a large conspiracy among the colorful gatherings to respond to the crushes of an unorganized president.
What is seen somewhat resembles the hysteria on the left previously ignited in the 1930s by a communist writer, John Roy Carlson, whose two books, Under cover and The plotter, helped create the Smith Act, an embarrassing and fiasco indictment of sedition during World War II. The Attorney General’s list of subversive organizations, including left and right organizations after World War II. Drafted index of names published by the House Committee on Un-American Activities, parallel private blacklists to those in the Publications Red channels and Counterattackand the creation of numerous martyrs, real and synthetic.
Specific laws against “hate crimes” and other political crimes are almost always counterproductive. Prosecution is not aided by the general disgust for murder, arson, robbery or assault, or even the public alarm caused by improper possession of explosives and military weapons, as defendants are viewed as targets for their speeches and opinions. not their acts of violence. Too many members of the American left have brief memories. McCarthy-era law enforcement arrested few but resulted in successful anti-American propaganda on American campuses as well as in Western Europe and the Third World.
When Senator Durbin and his cohorts propose new laws to President Biden, he would do well to read and plagiarize President Truman’s courageous and prophetic, but unfortunately failed, veto of the 1950 Homeland Security Act.
The new agencies proposed, while seemingly innocuous, will have a growing number of intelligence functions. Their recruitment, like that of police forces on the one hand and civil rights agencies on the other, is likely to attract disproportionate political zealots. Most of all, the authors of our Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights feared the creation of a centralized police system like the Earl of Stafford’s “thorough” system based on a standing army. Our founding documents are littered with protective measures against such a system.
In the long term, the best protection against domestic terrorism is a reasonably contented citizenry that is at odds with the juristocracy, the imperial presidency and the federalization of practically everything. Another protection is the respect of this forgotten value, the government with the consent of the governed.
George LiebmannThe President of the Baltimore Bar Library Company is the author of numerous works on law and history, most recently Vox Clamantis in the desert: an iconoclast investigates four failed administrations (2021).
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