White House quietly releases document that creates widespread worry…
The White House’s late-week release of an executive order has sent the online community into an uproar, worried that President Obama had secretly provided himself means to institute martial law in America.
In the common practice of dumping government documents on a Friday afternoon, just as the news cycle is wrapping up for the week – a move critics say allows the administration to avoid widespread coverage of embarrassing actions – the White House released an executive order on “National Defense Resources Preparedness.”
Filled with language about “government-owned equipment” and a “defense executive reserve,” among other vague statements, rumors began to spread that the executive order expanded the president’s power to do everything from seizing whole industries to drafting private armies.
A Canada Free Press article titled “Obama Executive Order: Peacetime Martial Law!” spread concerns of gasoline ration cards; while an Examiner article declared the order would “nationalize everything” and “allow for a civilian draft.” Facebook, email and Twitter were suddenly abuzz, and even the extremely popular Drudge Report posted a link to the White House release under the title “Martial Law? Obama Issues Executive Order.”
Screen shot of Drudge Report, “Martial Law” headline highlighted
But are the cries of martial law and expanding executive power justified?
No, says William A. Jacobson, associate clinical professor at Cornell Law School.
“If someone wants to make the argument that this is an expansion of presidential powers, then do so based on actual language,” warns Jacobson. “There is enough that Obama actually does wrong without creating claims which do not hold up to scrutiny.”
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.
Obama’s executive order specifically assigns “executive departments and agencies responsible for plans and programs related to national defense” to do five things:
- “identify” requirements for emergencies;
- “assess” the capability of the country’s industrial and technological base;
- “be prepared” to ensure the availability of critical resources in time of national threat;
- “improve the efficiency” of the industrial base to support national defense;
- “foster cooperation” between commercial and defense sectors.
Later provisions in the order establish the protocol for government agencies to purchase equipment needed in times of national emergency and even make loans to ensure the availability of that equipment.
Despite the vague nature of the functions, none mention anything about martial law or seizing private property. The five functions are also identical to those identified in Clinton’s EO 12919.
So why did Obama issue the order at all?
A side-by-side analysis of Obama’s order compared to Clinton’s, conducted by Ed Morrissey of HotAir.com, reveals Obama’s order is essentially just an update to reflect changes in government agency structure.
“If one takes a look at EO 12919, the big change is in the cabinet itself,” Morrissey writes. “In 1994, we didn’t have a Department of Homeland Security, for instance, and some of these functions would naturally fall to DHS. In EO 12919, the FEMA director had those responsibilities, and the biggest change between the two is the removal of several references to FEMA (10 in all). Otherwise, there aren’t a lot of changes between the two EOs, which looks mainly like boilerplate.
“I’m not ruling out the possibility that this is more than it seems,” adds Jacobson, “but unless and until someone [demonstrates any expansion of powers in the order], I’ll consider this to be routine.”
“The timing of this release might have looked a little strange,” Morrissey concludes, “but this is really nothing to worry about at all.”
New Executive Order: We Can Take Anything from Anyone at Any Time…
Very quietly, on Friday, March 16, President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order called the National Defense Resources Preparedness order.
Like every “act” or “order” passed of late, the name is a completely misleading piece of false-patriotic propaganda.
It should be called the “We Can Take Anything from Anyone at Any Time” order, because that is exactly what it boils down to.
The general function of the act is this:
Executive departments and agencies responsible for plans and programs relating to national defense…or for resources and services needed to support such plans and programs, shall identify requirements for the full spectrum of emergencies, including essential military and civilian demand.
This means that any department of the government that is responsible for any item or service, either for the military or the general populace, can make a determination of what the needs of the country are. The “full spectrum of emergenices” means that this is not specific to times of martial law.
These departments shall:
be prepared, in the event of a potential threat to the security of the United States, to take actions necessary to ensure the availability of adequate resources and production capability, including services and critical technology, for national defense requirement.
This means that if you own a factory that produces something the government “needs”, your facility can be co-opted to produce the goods required. People can be forced to work to provide these items.
A committee, headed up by the Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, “shall serve as the integrated policymaking forum for consideration and formulation of national defense resource preparedness policy and shall make recommendations to the President on the use of authorities under the Act.”
Six governmental departments have been delegated the authority “to require acceptance and priority performance of contracts or orders (other than contracts of employment) to promote the national defense over performance of any other contracts or orders, and to allocate materials, services, and facilities as deemed necessary or appropriate to promote the national defense.”
This is followed by a list of the Department Secretaries and what items they can “reallocate” (which sounds better than “steal”)
(1) the Secretary of Agriculture with respect to food resources, food resource facilities, livestock resources, veterinary resources, plant health resources, and the domestic distribution of farm equipment and commercial fertilizer;
(2) the Secretary of Energy with respect to all forms of energy;
(3) the Secretary of Health and Human Services with respect to health resources;
(4) the Secretary of Transportation with respect to all forms of civil transportation;
(5) the Secretary of Defense with respect to water resources; and
(6) the Secretary of Commerce with respect to all other materials, services, and facilities, including construction materials.
So, again, it boils down to “anything they want” – if it isn’t specified in the list, it’s covered by the Secretary of Commerce with “all other materials, services, and facilities”.
If you are assuming that this appropriation of personal property will only happen during times of war or great crisis, don’t. That’s covered too:
The Secretary of each agency…shall plan for and issue regulations to prioritize and allocate resources and establish standards and procedures by which the authority shall be used to promote the national defense, under both emergency and non-emergency conditions.
And this brings home “anything at any time”.
This is followed by a big section on defense spending and allocation of funds (more spending), as well as what reports need to be written.
Then the order discusses “labor requirements” of the “national workforce”. Some of the new responsibilities of the Secretary of Labor, Hilda Solis, are as follows:
- make a continuing appraisal of the Nation’s workforce needs for purposes of national defense
- the development of policies regulating the induction and deferment of persons for duty in the armed services
- formulate plans, programs, and policies for meeting the labor requirements of actions to be taken for national defense purposes
This means that you can be compelled to work at a specific job if the government deems it necessary. Further, they can put you in the military, even though we currently have no active draft.
A decision-making committee has been formed. Pay attention, because these are the folks that can take your things, commandeer your business and make you work wherever they choose, whenever they choose.
The Secretary of State
The Secretary of the Treasury
The Secretary of Defense
The Attorney General
The Secretary of the Interior
The Secretary of Agriculture
The Secretary of Commerce
The Secretary of Labor
The Secretary of Health and Human Services
The Secretary of Transportation
The Secretary of Energy
The Secretary of Homeland Security
The Director of National Intelligence
The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency
The Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers
The Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
The Administrator of General Services
Finally, Part VIII of the order defines the general provisions- the items and property of American people which can be taken from them under the scope of this act. It is simply astounding in it’s breadth of definitions.
- “Civil transportation” includes movement of persons and property by all modes of transportation in interstate, intrastate, or foreign commerce within the United States, its territories and possessions, and the District of Columbia, and related public storage and warehousing, ports, services, equipment and facilities, such as transportation carrier shop and repair facilities. “Civil transportation” also shall include direction, control, and coordination of civil transportation capacity regardless of ownership.
- “Energy” means all forms of energy including petroleum, gas (both natural and manufactured), electricity, solid fuels (including all forms of coal, coke, coal chemicals, coal liquification, and coal gasification), solar, wind, other types of renewable energy, atomic energy, and the production, conservation, use, control, and distribution (including pipelines) of all of these forms of energy.
- “Farm equipment” means equipment, machinery, and repair parts manufactured for use on farms in connection with the production or preparation for market use of food resources.
- “Fertilizer” means any product or combination of products that contain one or more of the elements nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium for use as a plant nutrient.
- “Food resources” means all commodities and products, (simple, mixed, or compound), or complements to such commodities or products, that are capable of being ingested by either human beings or animals, irrespective of other uses to which such commodities or products may be put, at all stages of processing from the raw commodity to the products thereof in vendible form for human or animal consumption. “Food resources” also means potable water packaged in commercially marketable containers.
- “Food resource facilities” means plants, machinery, vehicles (including on farm), and other facilities required for the production, processing, distribution, and storage (including cold storage) of food resources.
- “Health resources” means drugs, biological products, medical devices, materials, facilities, health supplies, services and equipment required to diagnose, mitigate or prevent the impairment of, improve, treat, cure, or restore the physical or mental health conditions of the population.
- “Water resources” means all usable water, from all sources, within the jurisdiction of the United States, that can be managed, controlled, and allocated to meet emergency requirements.
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America…
THE WHITE HOUSE,
March 16, 2012
This Executive Order was quietly signed on Friday afternoon. It is the death warrant of private property in the United States. An Executive Order, by definition, does not require congressional approval. A president can use it to set a policy and avoid all public debate and opposition.
This is nothing more than a foundation for the establishment of peace-time martial law. The President and his buddies are no longer trying to hide behind a facade of democracy. HE IS INTENT ON COMPLETE CONTROL. No president, not even Bush, with the unPatriot Act, has done more damage to the Bill of Rights than Barack Hussein Obama. His utter contempt for the property and liberty of the American people, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights is positively unmatched in the history of this country.
NOTE TO READERS:
It remains to be seen if the bought-and-paid-for mainstream media will publicize this outrage – nearly two days after the fact there is little to be found in a Google search, so my hopes aren’t high. Don’t let the current de facto government sweep this under the rug – let’s make it our responsibility to spread the word on this.