US Congresspeople Told Martial Law Would Be Imposed if Bailout Bill Didn't Pass

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127 Responses to “US Congresspeople Told Martial Law Would Be Imposed if Bailout Bill Didn't Pass”

  1. Pipenta says:

    #38 posted by ill lich , October 6, 2008 11:01 AM

    “Will the people with the “Support Our Troops” bumper stickers STILL feel the same way when those troops are on every street corner, checking to make sure your papoers are in order?”

    Well, if they are the same sort of people who believe that support consists of not paying the soldiers for shit, not giving them proper gear and support and extending their tours of duty, then yeah. In such cases we’re talking about people with spectacular stupidity, the aggressively stupid people. And not much of anything is going to change their minds as long as they can still go to the mall and shop.

    Moo.

  2. Fatal Bert says:

    @ #68, Antinous: “What on earth would make anyone think that the military would suppress the populace with guns? We have far more destructive weapons that come with almost no risk to the user. Whatever we’re using in Iraq and Afghanistan will be used here.”

    Sorry to burst your speculative bubble, but 90% of what we use to “suppress the populace” in Iraq is guns. The other 10% is propaganda.

    • Antinous says:

      Sorry to burst your speculative bubble, but 90% of what we use to “suppress the populace” in Iraq is guns. The other 10% is propaganda.

      Have you ever heard of something called YouTube? Or do you consider rocket launchers and white phosphorus to be guns?

  3. BBNinja says:

    #24> Don’t forget to bring a towel!

  4. jbang says:

    I’m still very curious as to the Who, Where and When of this story – Who exactly implied that Martial Law was likely, or an option?

    Cheney? Pelosi?

    Excuse my ignorance, but am I missing something here – members of the US Congress have been told that martial law is (apparently) a genuine threat and no-one appears to be asking who is putting that pressure on? Where in God’s name is the accountability? I can see the outrage, but why doesn’t it seem to be getting directed anywhere productive? And i’m not talking about the commentors here, but everywhere i’ve followed this story.

    This is truly a campaign that is de-evolving reporting – blips and bites without substance, unless you’re really willing to do the research… and even then it seems bloody difficult.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Guns can kill people, but so can lots of things not handled responsibility. Cars are responsible for more teen deaths than guns, often due to similar drug/alcohol use, yet we don’t say anything about raising the age requirement for driving. I suppose guns look more imposing to anyone who doesn’t think about it. Yes, people act irresponsibly, and there are consequences. Governments cannot prevent this, and the idea that gun control (especially in Canada with our porous border – look at a map) can solve gun crime is a fallacy. Do you think criminals are going to respect the law? As a gun owner, I know my kids won’t have access to them, as they will be trigger locked and in a safe, and taught about consequences. Too often we abdicate the responsibility for our children to government. I can respect someone saying they don’t like guns themselves, but I take issue with them saying that because they don’t like them I shouldn’t be allowed to have one. Raise your kids well, and crime goes away.

  6. Mondak says:

    It stands to reason that if we were truly that close to a need for martial law, then a “measly” $700 Billion Dollars will not be anywhere close to enough to bring us back. The second $700 Billion will be a lot easier to pass when it is “needed”.

    The threat of violence seems to be a nice way to force the bailout through when you don’t have objective fact to show its merit.

  7. TEKNA2007 says:

    @dbarak #34:

    Listening to NPR last night, it was said on Ira Glass’s show (don’t remember who said it) that there are two options available through the bill that was passed – buying up the bad assets, or “stock injection,” where the government buys a stake in the troubled banks, getting preferred stock in the transaction. Most economists think that’s the better option — healthier for the economy and certainly much fairer for the tax payers. Of course, the banks are lobbying hard against that option — they’d rather just dump the bad assets on us and keep ownership of the institutions as it already is.

    Good post dbarak. IIRC at the end of the Ira Glass piece, it was stated that as passed the bill contained language that allowed the govt to go the stock injection route, at the option of the government. Would like independent verification of that, but that’s what they said.

  8. Trent Hawkins says:

    #76 “I’m glad I got my Wilderness Survival merit badge 20 years ago in the Boy Scouts. Now if I only hadn’t moved to New York City.”

    - in case of mass riots you can always move to the city zoo. It’s like a little jungle / arctic.

  9. jahknow says:

    jahknow prepares “ready bag”

    first aid kit
    medications, rx and otc (PURCHASE ASAP)
    knife, swiss army
    knife, hunting
    handgun, 500 rounds ammunition (PURCHASE ASAP)
    radio w/batteries
    flashlight w/batteries
    towel, bath-sized
    toiletries, assorted
    water
    water filtration device (PURCHASE ASAP)

  10. sonny p fontaine says:

    A New World Order

  11. Shawn Wolfe says:

    National Socialism is rising.

    I’m just sayin’.

  12. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    Ceronomus @99, why are you taking Alessandro Cima’s chronically overdramatic word for it? I only recall disemvowelling one comment in the thread, and only part of that comment got disemvowelled. The rest of the conservative comments are still vowelliferous.

  13. zuzu says:

    Captain Murphy: Until we find the thief, I am declaring Martian law!

    Sparks: Um, I think its “martial law”.

    Captain Murphy: Silence! Under Martian law… uh… what are my powers, exactly?

    Sparks: Under martial law, you could suspend habeas corpus, empower a posse comitatus…

    Captain Murphy: That’s crap. Mars is wild, untamed. I’m forming a cadre of Martian knights charged with enforcing Martian law.

    Captain Murphy: Under Martian law doctors and other wizards are forbidden!

  14. Todd Sieling says:

    Though I’m not a big fan of hers, I heard Naomi Klein discussing the bailout bill and surrounding events in terms of her Shock Doctrine, which I think holds up pretty well. Right down to the parallels with the way the Patriot Act was passed in a panic and later found to have all sorts of favors and perks.

  15. Alessandro Cima says:

    I want to know why comment #9 from DaisyTrench has had vowels removed:

    “I want to know who’s threatening martial law. Y ll r ssmng th crrnt dmnstrtn thrtnd t. bt t ws Nncy Pls sprdng rmrs nd thrts.”

    There appears to be no foul language used. It is just a dissenting opinion that contradicts the story of the video. This is totally unacceptable behavior by forum moderators and if not explained adequately will cause this member to stop reading BoingBoing permanently. I am a raving liberal and really hope that dissenting views are not being censored here on BoingBoing. The behavior of moderators has been getting increasingly oppressive recently and it hard to fathom why.

    • Antinous says:

      Alessandro,

      I didn’t dv it, but Nancy Pelosi is a prime target for astroturfers. That kind of statement requires a credible citation. Propaganda does not equal discourse.

  16. acacia72 says:

    Do a web search on “Tackamarks” or “tackmarks” for the comments from nikolai and go from there.
    Of course this may get censored as well… Some frightening $hit…

  17. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #83 Alessandro Cima

    I cannot speak for the person who did the disemvoweling, but I read both left-and-right-wing blogs, and some of the more notorious right-wing blogs are claiming that Nancy Pelosi invoked a rule in the House prior to the vote on the bailout bill, which is known by some house members as ‘martial law’. Like the Internet Death Penalty, it’s not really that, but it had the effect (if it was in fact invoked) of forcing the bill to a vote over any and all objections.

    http://whatreallyhappened.com/content/explanation-pelosis-martial-law

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7B4laX1E70

    Rep Burgess (R), in the video above, stated on CSPAN that they were forced to vote on the bill without being allowed to see it.

    I take no position on this, I merely note its existence.

  18. AliasUndercover says:

    I quote the eminent sage Beavis, “Are you threatening me?”

  19. Keith says:

    Wigwam Jones @28: Fortunately, you can buy guns legally in America still. You’re welcome.

    Well sure. And the epitome of foolish is you and your shotgun vs. a platoon of marines with 21st century weapons and a scorching case of PTSD.

    Gun enthusiasts love the myth of the citizen militia but seem to forget that this isn’t the 18th century anymore. Modern armies aren’t going to line up Continental Style and let farmers shoot at them from the treeline.

    In the event that martial law is declared, you and Ted Nugent won’t even see the Blackwater Mercenaries coming. You’ll just wake up when the first wave of tear gas pulls you vomiting from your bed and then pass right out again once the tasers hit you. If you’re lucky to wake up a second time, you might be aware of the fact that you once had a gun and a right to use it but that will quickly be blotted form your memory as they dunk you face first into a tub of water. Repeatedly. For hours. Until you willingly and lovingly confess to buggering dogs while chanting verses from the Koran and kneeling on an American flag.

  20. thrillbot says:

    Why was #9 disemvoweled? The commentator is correct that we don’t know who started these rumors or for what purpose. The comment was not a personal attack, just a dissenting opinion.

  21. coldspell says:

    #76

    I’m glad I got my Wilderness Survival merit badge 20 years ago in the Boy Scouts. Now if I only hadn’t moved to New York City.

    Maybe today’s Scouts need an Urban Survival merit badge, too? (I already have my Wilderness Survival merit badge.)

  22. grimc says:

    Concerning what weapons might be used during martial law, somebody upthread posted about a US Army unit being trained for civil disturbances. Part of that training is the use of ‘non-lethal’ crowd control weapons, including a microwave emitter that makes people feel like they’re on fire. I expect that Raytheon et al. have a few more things up their sleeve, too.

  23. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #86 grimc

    Part of that training is the use of ‘non-lethal’ crowd control weapons, including a microwave emitter that makes people feel like they’re on fire. I expect that Raytheon et al. have a few more things up their sleeve, too.

    Not just up their sleeves. Ever hear of the ‘brown note’? That’ll ruin your day.

  24. Antinous says:

    Comments about moderation can go in the Moderation Thread.

  25. grimc says:

    Also, we don’t have enough troops left to impose martial law across the US. We don’t even have enough to cover Afghanistan.

  26. Alessandro Cima says:

    I have been telling my friends and anyone else who would listen over the past 5 years that if faced with a losing election in 2008, the logical end-game for the Bush group would be a crisis in September or October which would require the sudden imposition of martial law.

    The next four weeks are going to be interesting and probably not so good. There are some who call the Bush people criminals. I’m not certain they have any idea of the magnitude.

  27. Alessandro Cima says:

    Antinous,

    I am aware that thousands of posts blaming this person or that person for something in politics are posted every day here and elsewhere. This looks to me like Boingboing is enforcing a single point of view in its forums. That is not a liberal position. Liberals don’t do that. They speak openly and allow even conservative nut cases to have their say.

    To categorize that post as propaganda is extremely unreasonable. Almost everyone who posts a comment somewhere has some sort of propaganda to put out there. Come on now.

    • Antinous says:

      They speak openly and allow even conservative nut cases to have their say.

      I’ll make an exception and allow you to put the URL of your blog in a comment so that they can go there and do just that. But BB has no intention of hosting astroturfers.

  28. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #46 posted by Keith , October 6, 2008 12:23 PM

    Well sure. And the epitome of foolish is you and your shotgun vs. a platoon of marines with 21st century weapons and a scorching case of PTSD.

    I *am* a US Marine. Surprise!

    Gun enthusiasts love the myth of the citizen militia but seem to forget that this isn’t the 18th century anymore. Modern armies aren’t going to line up Continental Style and let farmers shoot at them from the treeline.

    Asymmetrical warfare, baby. The only way to fly.

  29. HollywoodBob says:

    How long before the mass egress from the USofA begins? Can Europe use another 125 Billion consumers? I say only 125, because there’s a good half of us that think everything is just hunky dory. Let the free thinking mildly socialist Liberals come to the land of the mostly freer, and leave America to the lunatic evangelists and greedy business persons.

    Anyone want to sponsor my immigration to Finland come a republican win Nov. 4th?

  30. toxonix says:

    “Among the matters the House may be asked to vote on under martial law are a major conference report on pension legislation, a costly bill that would permanently reduce the estate tax and extend certain expiring tax provisions”

    They’re trying to extend Bush’s tax cuts.
    This has been around for a while, but for some reason they’re trying to fast track it as if it were incredibly important.

  31. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #44 jahknow

    jahknow prepares “ready bag”

    first aid kit
    medications, rx and otc (PURCHASE ASAP)
    knife, swiss army
    knife, hunting
    handgun, 500 rounds ammunition (PURCHASE ASAP)
    radio w/batteries
    flashlight w/batteries
    towel, bath-sized
    toiletries, assorted
    water
    water filtration device (PURCHASE ASAP)

    1) The cost over many years of purchasing all the above and then some, distributed in cache locations all over the country:

    $$$

    2) The cost of the training necessary to be able to put them to effective use in an emergency:

    Many years given to military and LE service

    3) The look on the face of the gun-grabber who insisted that the jack-booted thugs would never kick down his door on the day they kick down his door:

    Priceless.

    PS – Just kidding. I do not think there is any danger of … hey, what the heck? What’s that helicopter doing on my lawn? Ruh-roh.

  32. Takuan says:

    toodles brownie, heck of a job.

  33. freeyourcrt says:

    Many here still thinks this is about the Bush Administration. You people haven’t been paying close enough attention for the last 90+ years. THis kinda of thing isn’t put in place in 8 years.

  34. Frank_in_Virginia says:

    Oh please can we just get Bush to the Hague so they can hang him?

  35. dfornika says:

    Suckers! Martial law will be imposed regardless!

  36. Alessandro Cima says:

    What’s an astroturfer? I don’t get it. What I see in comment #9 is a simple clear statement that makes the story of the video post about martial law somewhat suspect. That looks to me like normal argument. Is an astroturfer someone with a dissenting opinion?

  37. Takuan says:

    guns to suppress a civilian population? Nope. First you block the roads. No food in three days. Then you turn off the power and gas. Then the water. After that, an example by leveling a random block with one bomb or an apartment building with tank fire. People listen to reason.

  38. loraksus says:

    #44 – The problem with handguns is they wont penetrate body armor. Fairly large caliber / high velocity rifles on the other hand.

    One of the interesting things about Canada is that everyone with rifles uses much stronger rounds in comparison to what is common in the USA.
    .300 win mag is more or less “the floor” where I live. Most body armor doesn’t really do much against that round.
    .338 Lapua and 45-70 are also common rounds up here.

    Kind of macabre to talk about this situation like this though…

  39. Takuan says:

    your brain, not your gun, is the only thing that will save you in the end.

  40. Evan Rappaport says:

    I was wondering when George Bush was going to declare martial law and suspend the elections.

  41. Drew from Zhrodague says:

    Didn’t someone mention this before? I think there was a difference between soldiers-on-the-streets and Congress’s martial law. I didn’t see anything in the Wikipedia article, but I only skimmed it.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martial_Law

  42. usonia says:

    Mid october.

  43. manicbassman says:

    Naomi Wolf: Fascist America:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/apr/24/usa.comment

    a link for those who ahven’t already found it

  44. marco antonio says:

    What is it with the guns?? Seriously, paranoia and ammunition are a terrible combination. Whatever happened to hiding in the basement and growing your own tomatoes? forming groups and collaborate to survive? There ARE others ways to push forward without having to wave around the power to kill and maim. I will never understand the ‘right to own a gun’ thing. To me it always reads ‘right to kill someone’…

  45. Razzabeth says:

    Ha! The market fell 10,000 points anyway, according to Yahoo this morning. Shall we march?

  46. bardfinn says:

    Wigwam Jones:

    Precisely whom should I be thanking for the right to bear arms (besides the founding fathers) – ? Certainly not the Bush Administration, who has been sued for issuing an order – an unConstitutional order – to National Guard units to confiscate all firearms from private citizens in disaster areas in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

    Should I be thanking you? You’ve done nothing but provide the suit ‘gainst which mine foil is pointed.

    Shall I thank the military? As the martial arm of the executive, their direct action in the United States itself is forbidden. I can thank them for serving their country, but the right to bear arms was not theirs to give nor could they deliver it. Freedom /is/ free – Government costs.

    Shall I thank the Supreme Court, who in Heller affirmed my right to possess a functional firearm but also affirmed the ability of a municipal government to impose “reasonable” restrictions on the manner and scope of that possession, ensuring another few decades of living in a grey area, exploitable by politicians for the sake of expediency?

  47. Tom Hale says:

    Didn’t JFK write up the guidelines for initiating martial law?

  48. noen says:

    That’s what happens when you take impeachment off the table. You lose all bargaining power with these thugs.

    The Plan:
    Collapse the economy, declare martial law, call out the military to enforce it (they are already training for this), suspend the elections, install McCain.

  49. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    Stop panicking. Go find your towel. Check the readiness of your Go Bag, but don’t make yourself part of the problem. In time of civil disorder, having your prescriptions up to date, your documents in one place, and some ready cash on hand is a lot more important than equipping yourself with Rambo knives and lots of ammo. As always, your biggest asset is your friends and neighbors.

    I believe the briefings they’re describing would have been Paulson and Bernanke pushing their original bailout bill, and that what the Congressman is saying is that Paulson & Bernanke’s representations of what would happen if the bill wasn’t immediately passed were excessively apocalyptic scare tactics.

    It’s disturbing, but it’s not the same thing as putting troops on every street corner.

    Here’s the single most lucid vernacular explanation I’ve seen for the bailout. It starts around 1:28.

    GrimC @21:

    Please. The President has the power to declare martial law, not Congress.

    Thank you for pointing that out. It’s that whole “Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces” thing.

    Sorcerer Mickey @29, they are, I admit, a disturbing presence. I’m also disturbed by the deliberate fuzziness of the language used to establish them.

    Mojave @39, that’s J. Cofer Black.

    Pipenta @42: Those would be the kind of people who wouldn’t believe you if you told them there have been mutinies in National Guard regiments slated to be shipped off to Iraq? Our military has been mistreated.

    Jahknow @44, it looks like you’re getting ready to be part of the problem.

    BCarnell @45: For the sake of everyone’s peace of mind, I’m going to point out that that article you’ve linked to is dated July 28, 2006.

    Alessandro @48, I’m worried too, but it seems to me that among my duties as a citizen is helping preserve civic order. Not being unnecessarily alarmist is part of that.

    Guys, can we not turn this into yetanother gun control argument? I’d like to be able to discuss the specific questions and issues raised by this entry, and if we just argue about guns again, it won’t happen.

  50. demidan says:

    Rise up and ,,, you know what we have to do!

  51. Brettspiel says:

    Link to Army Times article on 1st Brigade Combat Team active deployment in the US:

    http://www.armytimes.com/news/2008/09/army_homeland_090708w/

    Brigade homeland tours start Oct. 1

    3rd Infantry’s 1st BCT trains for a new dwell-time mission. Helping ‘people at home’ may become a permanent part of the active Army
    By Gina Cavallaro – Staff writer
    Posted : Tuesday Sep 30, 2008 16:16:12 EDT

    The 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has spent 35 of the last 60 months in Iraq patrolling in full battle rattle, helping restore essential services and escorting supply convoys.

    Now they’re training for the same mission — with a twist — at home.

    Beginning Oct. 1 for 12 months, the 1st BCT will be under the day-to-day control of U.S. Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command, as an on-call federal response force for natural or manmade emergencies and disasters, including terrorist attacks.

    It is not the first time an active-duty unit has been tapped to help at home. In August 2005, for example, when Hurricane Katrina unleashed hell in Mississippi and Louisiana, several active-duty units were pulled from various posts and mobilized to those areas.

    But this new mission marks the first time an active unit has been given a dedicated assignment to NorthCom, a joint command established in 2002 to provide command and control for federal homeland defense efforts and coordinate defense support of civil authorities.

    After 1st BCT finishes its dwell-time mission, expectations are that another, as yet unnamed, active-duty brigade will take over and that the mission will be a permanent one.

    “Right now, the response force requirement will be an enduring mission. How the [Defense Department] chooses to source that and whether or not they continue to assign them to NorthCom, that could change in the future,” said Army Col. Louis Vogler, chief of NorthCom future operations. “Now, the plan is to assign a force every year.”

  52. jahknow says:

    Blackwater agents and assets are pre-positioned and standing by.

  53. daisytrench says:

    I want to know who’s threatening martial law. Y ll r ssmng th crrnt dmnstrtn thrtnd t. bt t ws Nncy Pls sprdng rmrs nd thrts.

    • Xeni Jardin says:

      @daisytrench, democratic congresspersons aren’t the only ones repeating this testimony. Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX) and others on that side of the aisle apparently made a similar claim.

  54. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #53 posted by bardfinn

    You may thank me, and all those of us who swore an oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and kept our word.

    Or not, as you prefer. You’re welcome just the same.

    Semper Fidelis

  55. bardfinn says:

    Wigwam Jones:

    “2) The cost of the training necessary to be able to put them to effective use in an emergency: ”

    One merit badge in the Boy Scouts: Emergency Preparedness.

    There are precisely two things on that fellow’s list that need more than a manual: The prescription antibiotics and the handgun. One needs 50 rounds a month for proficiency and one needs years of EMT training and a medical history.

    Can you knit a sweater? Because, honestly, the ability to make your own clothes – and to teach others – is going to be very valuable forty years after a civilisation collapse. The ability to clean an H&K in a world with no ammunition – not so much.

  56. matt joyce says:

    Actually look up the 1st BCT and where they are deployed and why. You might be surprised.

    Additionally… someone needs to be held accountable for this bill being passed. Someone needs to go to prison for this.

  57. dbarak says:

    Question… is there any simple and rational explanation of a nefarious motive for the Bush administration to impose martial law? What would they gain? What would their cronies gain? I’m not arguing either side of the debate, just curious.

    • Antinous says:

      I’m somewhat surprised that we’re having an election. I assumed that the current administration would have at least tried to seize power permanently. If the executive branch hadn’t effectively alienated the military, I don’t doubt that things would be very different.

  58. zuzu says:

    What is it with the guns?? Seriously, paranoia and ammunition are a terrible combination. Whatever happened to hiding in the basement and growing your own tomatoes? forming groups and collaborate to survive? There ARE others ways to push forward without having to wave around the power to kill and maim. I will never understand the ‘right to own a gun’ thing. To me it always reads ‘right to kill someone’…

    Think of the Chinese monks who developed kung-fu to defend themselves from raiders.

    Guns are just a tool. People choose to use them for defense or offense. It’s the people who use them offensively (such as in a professional army, or in a gang) who are problematic.

  59. ck says:

    Step 10 in Naomi Wolfe’s fascism. Here we go…

  60. t3knomanser says:

    @Daisytrench: I was thinking something similar. We hear that there were threats, but WHO made them, WHEN, WHERE and WHY?

    Those basic questions that we should always be asking: Who, what, where, when, why and how.

  61. alowishus says:

    Time to panic!

    • Xeni Jardin says:

      @alowishus, I don’t believe it’s time to panic. But it’s significant that this sort of rhetoric is in the air, and something I believe we should all observe with critical, skeptical sensibilities.

  62. Anonymous says:

    well nothing big happened, but i readily agree that some time in our life time we will see this kind of tyranny, but u’d be surprised how brainwashed they get you in the military while chunks of saliva land in your face from the drill sargeant. I think if martial law is instated, if john doe dosn’t decide to stand up and either peacefully or violently protest than we don’t stand a chance. and for those of you who think that it would be a pointless battle against the military, look up riots and stuff on youtube and google, you’d be surprised what a couple thousand people can do, especially the denmark youth house riots. and i believe that the military is so revered not because of its weapons, but the team work. I dont condone any violence, I hope this dosn’t happen at all. but something smells funny with all these secret bills being passed, and im afraid that things may go down hill for us more than they already are

  63. Brettspiel says:

    Also, for those wondering where they’ll get the troops to support this action – every city & state has a well-armed standing army already in the form of the local and state police. Where do you think all those SWAT teams get their training?

  64. noen says:

    Not just Blackwater jahknow, regular military units are training to act within US borders now. It is illegal and congress passed a law reaffirming it but Bush made a singing statement otherwise. When you get down to it, laws are meaningless unless someone acts on them, this legislature has consistently failed to act to defend the rule of law when Bush has made his power grabs.

    Republican are traitors.

    The only possible counter to Bush’s threat of martial law would be impeachment, yet we all know each and every Republican would not support impeachment even in the face of this extraordinary crime by the Bush hunta. Impeachment, our only remedy, would fail.

    Republican are traitors.

  65. airship says:

    I doubt it could be done. It’s just more political bullying and scare tactics.

  66. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    DBarak, they were trying to scare Congress into passing the initial “Give us $700 billion with no strings attached” version of the bailout.

  67. wolfiesma says:

    #59
    That is so true and it so many companies. Big acquisitions then layoffs. It is sick.

  68. Rajio says:

    Lol amedica seems crazier with each passing day. At least it makes us Canadians look better.

  69. Modusoperandi says:

    As long as it’s not gay martial law. They’re against them hi-falootin’, big city, elite, gay martials. Martial law is between a man and a women, apparenty.

  70. bardfinn says:

    Many of my friends and acquaintances are stocking up on foodstuffs and water, and discussing where and how to purchase firearms.

    It’s not political bullying nor scare tactics. Bush’s legacy is 100% peanut hulls, and the man wants only to have a /legacy/. It’s not beyond him to use any excuse at hand to execute his preferred actions (as proof: Osama bin Laden bombs the WTC and the Pentagon, therefore Saddam Hussein is hunted down and tried and executed.)

  71. anomaly69 says:

    Look around people, we are living under martial law now. We don’t have soldiers in the streets but that doesn’t make it any less real. In fact that’s why nobody seems to notice.

  72. grimc says:

    @#3

    Congressional Martial Law is when a bill must be voted ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on without time for legislators to review it beforehand. In the context the clip provided, though, it appears that he was talking about the soldiers-on-the-streets kind.

    @#9

    Please. The President has the power to declare martial law, not Congress.

  73. bardfinn says:

    wigwam:

    I’d rather thank the ones that correctly parsed the oath and realised that defending the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, included and superseded following illegal orders from their command.

    At any rate – I have no impetus to thank you. Acting as a civilian, over the past two weeks you’ve put forward your view of the US government as being open to the rule of the Populace (the rule of the mob) rather than as a constitutional Republic (Rule of Law), have apologised for the GOP’s atrocious VP candidate and spun her documented views, and attempted to pick fights.

    Acting as a military man: You’re a United States Marine and you’re /soliciting/ thanks from the citizens you serve, as a cover for forwarding your chosen political agenda? You’re a US Marine, self-inflating your importance, conveying yourself as a saviour? My father and my grandfather and my great-grandfather served in the United States Military – and never once did any of them purport to make others think their service made them first-class citizens while those who did not serve were second-class – owing them something.

    Your service as a United States Marine – whether it is in the past or current – /does not make you automatically right/, and it does not make you first-class. It gives /you/ an opportunity to exhibit better behaviour than to ask us to believe that you’re better than us.

  74. Daemon says:

    Wouldn’t it be amusing if the entire Bush administration was impeached a month before the election?

  75. noen says:

    It’s never time to panic, during an emergency panic will kill you.

    It’s time to act.

  76. James David says:

    Soap would probably work better for washing their hands of responsibility. Or just straight lye.

  77. acacia72 says:

    NATO troops might even be used for martial law. Below is a website that explains. When I showed this to a former FBI supervisor I was warned to “stop digging” or I’d go on “the list.” This is serious $hit…

    http://www.tckmrks.frsrvrs.cm/

  78. umeboshi says:

    GRIMC is right, this is about House Rules, not the constitution — see http://www.rumormillnews.com/cgi-bin/forum.cgi?noframes;read=132479 and a dozen other places.

    There’s plenty else to freak out about, but not this.

  79. querent says:

    I’ve said it before…

    No empire can last forever.
    It would defy the laws of thermodynamics.

    Things always get worse before they get better. The death-throes of the beast. May you live in interesting times…

  80. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #57 bardfinn

    There are precisely two things on that fellow’s list that need more than a manual: The prescription antibiotics and the handgun. One needs 50 rounds a month for proficiency and one needs years of EMT training and a medical history.

    I’d go along with that. My medical training consists of what I was taught. I’ve got an (ok, it’s expired) CPR certificate, but I got the basics of immediate action for first aid in the military. Stop the bleeding, start the breathing, protect the wound, and treat for shock. Something like that.

    Can you knit a sweater?

    No, but my wife can. I will add that to the list of things to learn when I have time, though. Good idea.

    Because, honestly, the ability to make your own clothes – and to teach others – is going to be very valuable forty years after a civilisation collapse. The ability to clean an H&K in a world with no ammunition – not so much.

    I can make my own firearms and powder, cast my own bullets from lead. Failing that, I can use a bow, (I suck at it but can get better), I can rig traps, fish, put up preserves, read a map, use a compass, rig a shelter, stay dry, start a fire, etc, etc. I grew up in the country – we shot things and ate them, grew things and cooked them. I bang Perl code now, but I still know which end of shovel points down.

    Biggest problems for me will be my eyesight and my bad teeth. Both are things I can’t fix myself, and the ability to fix them for me might not be around. I keep eyeglasses stockpiled, just like they were ammo, but the teeth – might take a bottle of whisky and a pair of pliers if it should come to that.

  81. Ceronomus says:

    To those of you stocking up on ammo and screaming about your rights, you’re thinking of the WRONG martial law.

    I am more disturbed by the fact that anyone expressing what might be construed as a conservative opinion seems to be getting disemvowelled…and I’m pretty liberal.

    #9 for example. It is easy enough to read, there really isn’t anything there that is inflamatory. What exactly are the guidelines here. I mean, as a liberal my opinions seem safe, but if someone gets nailed just for being conservative? That seems a bit bogus.

  82. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #19 bardfinn

    Many of my friends and acquaintances are stocking up on foodstuffs and water, and discussing where and how to purchase firearms.

    Fortunately, you can buy guns legally in America still. You’re welcome.

  83. Sorcerer Mickey says:

    Oh, great! Now we’ll have a use for all of those 800+ domestic prisons that FEMA has waiting for us!
    Jolly!

  84. jahknow says:

    I might point out that, at least in part, my previous “ready bag” checklist was in jest.

    I do have a (very common) medical condition that will result in death if I’m deprived of Rx medications for more than a few days or a week, so that part is serious.

    The bit about guns was a joke, in part because I recognize what at least one other commenter pointed out — it’s totally futile (unless I’m attempting suicide-by-police). To this day, the only guns I’ve fired have been compressed-air pellet guns and BB-guns, and (up to now) have been staunchly anti-war, and at least borderline pacifist.

    My checklist was also a nod to the whole DHS/FEMA panic-inducing “buy duct tape and plastic sheeting” fiasco from a few years ago (and “duck and cover” before that).

    Confused yet? I am. Happy Monday!

  85. treyguy says:

    @Keith:

    Your comparison is exaggerated and ridiculous. Shotguns? vs a whole platoon? *IF* such a conflict were to arise, I seriously doubt military commanders would send large amounts of heavily armed troops to fight some dude with a shotgun. This is a very big country with A LOT of ground to cover. And while any military personnel unpatriotic enough to follow such orders might have the luxury of howitzers and A-10s and so on, they would be severely outnumbered.

    Currently, counting reserves and Coast Guard, there are approximately 2.3 million military personnel. There are over 300 million Americans. Estimates say that between 50 million and 80 million of those people own guns. There are approximately 223 million guns in the hands of those citizens (ATF). That makes for decent odds.

    So, *IF* king W pulls all the troops from around the world and imposes them here; and *IF* those troops comply, you can feel safe hiding in your closet knowing there are plenty of others out there to defend you.

    • Antinous says:

      What on earth would make anyone think that the military would suppress the populace with guns? We have far more destructive weapons that come with almost no risk to the user. Whatever we’re using in Iraq and Afghanistan will be used here.

  86. wolfiesma says:

    Zuzu, If the problem is people and not guns, what does that mean when its small children that get ahold of them killing themselves or others? Sometimes they are teenagers, (at my high school, three girls in my grade were shot and killed during an acid fueled faceoff. The boy got the gun from the girl’s stepdad.) Sometimes it is a spouse or other family member who shoots a gun in a fit of rage or other chemical imbalance. Guns do kill people. Maybe Obama was right about you “clingers.” I think I’m kidding here. I actually really enjoy hearing about the libertarian point of view. But the guns thing. I just really really hate guns. So much for my liberal tolerance.

  87. DWittSF says:

    It is interesting to see the payoff of 100+ years of union busting, propaganda and armed opposition against the People’s Right to Protest. There should have been massive protests and strikes in opposition to teh bailout, however, this ultimate democratic option has been carefully erased.

  88. acacia72 says:

    Another pertinent website inre to martial law:

    http://thspcldy.blgspt.cm/2006/02/fm-qdrnt-sgn-cds-r-tctcl.html

  89. t3knomanser says:

    @Querent: Technically true, but practically false. So long as an empire remains an open system, there’s always input- energy input, informational input- and as long as there’s input, thermodynamics doesn’t kick in.

    We’ll see how this works out. I’m disinclined to believe that we’re living in a singular time at the end of the American Empire. Not because that it won’t happen, but because it would mean we’re a special generation. The Law of Mediocrity tells us to assume that we’re not unusual.

  90. pstarr says:

    why are neither of the above links to more info on martial law working?

    it’s a conspiracy!

    (seriously)

  91. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #63 bardfinn

    I’d rather thank the ones that correctly parsed the oath and realised that defending the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, included and superseded following illegal orders from their command.

    Not sure in what way that’s not me as well.

    At any rate – I have no impetus to thank you. Acting as a civilian, over the past two weeks you’ve put forward your view of the US government as being open to the rule of the Populace (the rule of the mob) rather than as a constitutional Republic (Rule of Law),

    I disagree. I have put forward the view that people are free to try to change our method of government by using the very tools it provides. They may not succeed, that’s not guaranteed, but they are welcome to try.

    Of course we are a representative republic, I’ve not made any statements here to the contrary that I’m aware of.

    have apologised for the GOP’s atrocious VP candidate

    Yes, I have.

    and spun her documented views,

    I attempted to correct information I feel was incorrect, but I’ve been disemvoweled / deleted to the point of understanding that’s not acceptable behavior here.

    and attempted to pick fights.

    Not intentionally.

    Acting as a military man: You’re a United States Marine and you’re /soliciting/ thanks from the citizens you serve, as a cover for forwarding your chosen political agenda?

    No, more like an amusing reaction to several statements about ‘buying guns’ from a group that one might suspect would otherwise be purely horrified by the thought of a firearm in private possession. I said “thank me” in jest to point out the irony – and more with reference to my having been a pro-gun owner than having been a Marine. That point came up tangentially.

    You’re a US Marine, self-inflating your importance, conveying yourself as a saviour?

    I’m no savior, but I’m not a skunk either. I served honorably and well. Sorry I’m not that big on false modesty.

    My father and my grandfather and my great-grandfather served in the United States Military – and never once did any of them purport to make others think their service made them first-class citizens while those who did not serve were second-class – owing them something.

    No one owes me anything. On the other hand, I’ve done my duty to my country. Doesn’t make me better than anyone. But it means I get to march in the Veteran’s Day parade and ya’ll get to wave from the street. Well, some of you.

    And, I got a VA home loan, and when I snuff it, I get a nifty flag on my coffin with a bugler and everything.

    Your service as a United States Marine – whether it is in the past or current – /does not make you automatically right/, and it does not make you first-class. It gives /you/ an opportunity to exhibit better behaviour than to ask us to believe that you’re better than us.

    My service is in the past, although that might change. I have a friend who served with me, he just got back in – at age 50. Been out since 1985. They are SO scraping the bottom of the barrel.

    As I said, I’m not better than anyone. I’m a better person than I would have been had I not chosen to serve my country, but that’s just comparing me (-veteran) to me (+ veteran).

  92. Secret_Life_of_Plants says:

    When people with such disparate Weltbilds as Naomi Wolf and Alex Jones are predicting the same thing, maybe it is time to listen.

  93. dbarak says:

    @#60 posted by Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator

    Right, but beyond that, is there any benefit to the Bush crowd? Or is it ONLY a way for them to get what they want?

    I seriously doubt the majority of our representatives and certainly not the majority of the general population would stand for martial law. That doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen, but that it wouldn’t be easy.

  94. historyman68 says:

    No empire can last forever.
    It would defy the laws of thermodynamics.

    I thought it was evolution that defied the laws of thermodynamics?

  95. FutureNerd says:

    #107 Antinous said, “Comments about moderation can go in the Moderation Thread.”

    Which is here.

    The “BoingBoing’s Moderation Policy” link, under “Don’t Miss,” one of the upper sections of the sidebar, goes to the same place.

  96. Secret_Life_of_Plants says:

    Oops – I was thrown off by #11 posted by ck above me,

    I meant Alex Jones and Naomi Klein.

  97. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    Coldspell @73: Real cute. You must have forgotten how much of your reservoir and irrigation system was built with federal money. Hope you don’t miss all that Colorado river water, or the Lake Tahoe water from Nevada. And hey, aren’t you the guys who build major cities on top of major fault lines, fancy cantilevered houses on inherently unstable slopes, and entire housing developments in explosively flammable biozones? I guess this means you won’t be needing help next time one of your bad habits turns into an inevitable disaster.

    Wigwam @74:

    Seriously, if, and I say if, martial law were to be imposed, I’d probably just go along with the program – I seriously doubt that anyone wants to kill me, they want me to stay employed and buy stuff. But supposing a complete breakdown of all civil authority and anarchy ensues, with the military in hot pursuit, again, I would not be in confrontational mode. I’d be keeping a low profile and living as much off the grid as possible.

    Sure, long guns and IED’s are the way to go for warfare against a better-equipped enemy, but I don’t want to be in that position. Go about my business, don’t attract attention, fight only if need be.

    On this issue, you are a man of great good sense. I wish all the armed confrontation enthusiasts would re-read this comment a few times.

    It won’t be the “Wild West” I don’t think.

    I think it might be for a few weeks, until all the guys playing Cowboys & Indians either ran out of ammo, shot each other, or got tired of running around in the back country. And until that settled out, I’d stay strictly away from likely areas.

    Alessandro @83, 89: if you want to argue about moderation, take it to the moderation guidelines thread. And by the way, we aspire to something better than to be an arena for competing propaganda.

    Marco Antonio @97, if general civil unrest does come, I want to be living next door to you.

    Zuzu @98, it’s possible to discuss the efficacy of guns without having to explain that they don’t have independent agency.

    Look at Takuan’s comment @95. That’s a much more effective way to subdue a large urban population. In that situation, who do you shoot at? They’re not an invading force whose advance you can stop. You’re not part of a general uprising. You’re in the same position as an inner-city malcontent with an automatic weapon. Start shooting, and the swat team shows up.

    Two questions that need to precede the use of force are “What do I intend to accomplish,” and “Will this accomplish it.” If a gun turns out to be the appropriate tool, fine. Good to have one. But most of the “I got a gun, you can’t push me around” discussions I’ve heard over the past several decades never ask those questions. They also fail to consider that in a lot of situations, shooting at the other side just tells them you’re one of the guys they’re looking to suppress, and where they can find you.

  98. Cupcake Faerie says:

    Hooray Theresa Nielsen Hayden /Moderator
    May I just be one of many who will say, I for one welcome you back to Boing Boing! Same old stuff, you know….
    Back to our show….

  99. dbarak says:

    Listening to NPR last night, it was said on Ira Glass’s show (don’t remember who said it) that there are two options available through the bill that was passed – buying up the bad assets, or “stock injection,” where the government buys a stake in the troubled banks, getting preferred stock in the transaction. Most economists think that’s the better option — healthier for the economy and certainly much fairer for the tax payers. Of course, the banks are lobbying hard against that option — they’d rather just dump the bad assets on us and keep ownership of the institutions as it already is.

    As for black helicopters, martial law, etc., I’m not an alarmist by any means, but I am concerned. The Bush administration has shown that they’re not very concerned with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. We may not get to martial law, but I can certainly understand the concern (and I share it to some degree).

    I can only hope that if it comes to pass, our military is more patriotic than our leaders and they refuse to carry out those orders. And if they do in fact cross that line, then I honestly believe it’s time for a revo… I’m NOT advocating anything, for anyone that’s lurking.

    Unfortunately, I do believe that America’s best days are behind us, and I’m hoping that we don’t fall so far as to become a second-rate nation.

    I’m a patriotic veteran, and I know what I served for. What we’re experiencing isn’t that.

  100. acipolone says:

    GRIMC is correct, from what some quick looks on some of the gov’t sites show. They’re not talking about sending the military out into our streets.

    However, we’ve had military police driving our streets down here in New Orleans since Katrina. They enjoy coming to watch our kickball games. Generally good guys. (Though they drive with NOPD sometimes, and it’s scary when you get pulled over randomly and have NOPD on one side of the car and a dude with a machine gun on the other.)

  101. TheFool says:

    “The President has the power to declare martial law, not Congress.”

    Constitutionally, not really. There is a variety of laws that allow the executive to do different things in the face of some emergency or other.

    Though practically…. only the Congress is supposed to have the power to declare war, but that hasn’t stopped half the presidents in the last 5 decades from starting various wars anyway.

  102. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #60 Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator

    I seriously doubt the majority of our representatives and certainly not the majority of the general population would stand for martial law. That doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen, but that it wouldn’t be easy.

    I was waiting for someone to pick up on this…

    http://www.armytimes.com/news/2008/09/army_homeland_090708w/


    Brigade homeland tours start Oct. 1

    3rd Infantry’s 1st BCT trains for a new dwell-time mission. Helping ‘people at home’ may become a permanent part of the active Army

    They may be called upon to help with civil unrest and crowd control or to deal with potentially horrific scenarios such as massive poisoning and chaos in response to a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or high-yield explosive, or CBRNE, attack.

    Personally, though, I agree with you. I very seriously doubt any martial law in the USA.

  103. Anonymous says:

    I was researching….Thanks Keith and Wigwam, your posts left me in a good mood… I do feel some alarm and have for years and readiness is good.In case no one thought of it tampons and toilet paper would be a good item to stock up on. I heard they have a good barter value…. I don’t beleive the military itself is capable of a complete takeover but there is always the police who deal with violence everyday that can be summoned for service. I will go peaceably…. I hate guns and besides that I couldn’t harm a fly, well maybe a fly but certainly not a human.. but that doesn’t mean I have to starve until order is resumed. By the way did you hear about the thousands of dollars worth of tampons from a shipping center in Florida that were stolen? Now if those guys have to face a very bad situation they have a lot of barter power!

  104. microcars says:

    I heard the same words but perceived it differently.

    I think that “martial law” may be have been brought up, but only after mentioning that the DOW would drop 3000 points , at which point there would be panic in the streets and and when there is panic in the streets, …..Martial Law would be declared.
    So you better vote YES…or else!
    But I don’t think that Martial Law was presented as a direct option to voting NO.

  105. ill lich says:

    Will the people with the “Support Our Troops” bumper stickers STILL feel the same way when those troops are on every street corner, checking to make sure your papoers are in order?

  106. buddy66 says:

    Bingo, Antinous! The Pentagon is not George Bush’s friend. In a worse case scenario, a military junta would cross the Rubicon.

    Forget the handgun bullshit. That’s for movies and cops. Against troops, they’re about as much use as hunting tigers with flyswatters. I’m surprised, Jarhead, that you didn’t flag that one. How long has it been since you “qualified”?

    Actually, you’re just a bunch of scaredy-cats. Worry about your jobs and your mortgages, if you have them.

  107. coldspell says:

    How long until we have a second civil war? Only this time the West secedes from the Rest.

    Get your “US Out of California” t-shirts here:

    http://store.muledesign.com/shirts/cali.php

    Seriously, what are we getting out of this relationship? We grow our own oranges and avocados. We make our own movies. We’ve got burritos and the world’s 5th largest economy. Get the hell off our land so we can marry some gay people! And stop cuttin’ down our damn trees!

  108. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #72 buddy66

    Forget the handgun bullshit. That’s for movies and cops. Against troops, they’re about as much use as hunting tigers with flyswatters. I’m surprised, Jarhead, that you didn’t flag that one.

    Mainly because I was still laughing about the ‘figure out how to buy a gun’ comments.

    Seriously, if, and I say if, martial law were to be imposed, I’d probably just go along with the program – I seriously doubt that anyone wants to kill me, they want me to stay employed and buy stuff. But supposing a complete breakdown of all civil authority and anarchy ensues, with the military in hot pursuit, again, I would not be in confrontational mode. I’d be keeping a low profile and living as much off the grid as possible.

    Sure, long guns and IED’s are the way to go for warfare against a better-equipped enemy, but I don’t want to be in that position. Go about my business, don’t attract attention, fight only if need be. It won’t be the “Wild West” I don’t think.

    How long has it been since you “qualified”?

    For a shooting badge? 20+ years. For myself? I’m better than that now.

    Actually, you’re just a bunch of scaredy-cats. Worry about your jobs and your mortgages, if you have them.

    I do. Believe me, I do.

  109. jbang says:

    cn’t hlp bt gr wth lssndr n BB’s crrnt mdrtn plcs – whl thr r bvsly strtrfrs n th st (wth BB’s tn thy fnd t ncrdbly hrd t rsst) t sms tht gnn dssntng vws r gttng dsmvwld. Nt jst th crzs nd th rntrs.

    n th cs f #9, gn qstn. Why r w nt bng tld wh mpld ths? Wh ws tlkng bt ML bng rlstc tcm shld th bll nt b pssd.

    t wrrs m s mch t s lbrls nfrcng n pnt f vw (b t n thr srvrs, r nt) s t ds Rpblcns. t s nt hlthy.

  110. Mojave says:

    Cofer Black.
    Erik Prince.

    Remember those names.

  111. jbang says:

    And oops, 107 (Antinous), please excuse my comment about moderation.

  112. mikelotus says:

    Just drove by Fort Meyers. Normally its fairly open, but now its sealed tighter than a my virgin ass.

  113. Wigwam Jones says:

    @ #73 coldspell

    How long until we have a second civil war? Only this time the West secedes from the Rest.

    I’d be ok with that, actually. I mean the secede part, not the civil war part.

  114. loraksus says:

    #3, that was different… or this guy misunderstood.

    And call me cynical, but I don’t think the majority of the House and Senate needed a ton of encouragement to vote on this. Over a hundred billion dollars of pork was in the bill.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article4870770.ece

    That all said, I seriously have a hard time believing that martial law can successfully be imposed across the entire USA, or even wide regions of it. Yes, we’re hearing about one brigade of the 3ID being stationed within the continental USA, but if the SHTF, even a 100% loyal division will have difficulty extending their influence very far. Over a major city, maybe.
    Depends on the city I’d guess.
    Even a division sized unit wouldn’t be effective across a wide area. For a bit of historical background here, about 15,000 federal and NG troops were sent to NO after Katrina. Plus whatever Blackwater and other organizations contributed.

  115. stanfrombrooklyn says:

    I’m glad I got my Wilderness Survival merit badge 20 years ago in the Boy Scouts. Now if I only hadn’t moved to New York City.

  116. treyguy says:

    @#111
    I keep myself armed because I am not willing to assume that as long as I just act real nice and stay to myself that no-one would wish to do me harm. I am NOT an “armed confrontation enthusiast” and I would hope you would see the difference between the many people like myself who feel they should be prepared to defend themselves and their family should the need arise; and the few “cowboys and Indians” just looking to wreak havoc.

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