FellowshipOfMinds is grateful to reader Czar of Defenestration for alerting us to Ed Morrissey’s post on HotAir debunking this “private army” interpretation. Morrissey notes that what the new ObamaCare law does is merely amend the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 204) pertaining the funding of a medical corps, the Commissioned and/or Ready Reserve Corps, which has been in existence for 66 years:
In 1964, Lyndon Johnson restructured the Ready Reserve Corps by executive order as a deployable response team reporting to the Surgeon General for disaster relief. Actually, that EO appears not to have created the RRC but merely to have codified its chain of command under the Surgeon General. According to Findlaw, the relevant statute creating the RRC originated in 1944, during World War II, and has been repeatedly modified since, reorganized in 1949, 1966, and 1993.
This section of ObamaCare modifies it yet again, mainly in terms of funding. It’s not a great surprise that a bill that seeks to increase the federal government’s role in health care would also seek to expand or at least redefine its emergency response agencies. Even if this was a “private health-care army,” though, it would be a woefully underfunded one with a $12.5 million annual budget.
While it is somewhat comforting to know that ObamaCare has not created a brand new special corps, I do not share Mr. Morrissey’s equanimity. If I were the Punk in the White House, it would make perfect sense to utilize an existing corps but redirect it to new purpose. We know that the hydra-like ACORN is teetering and may declare bankruptcy, although this does not mean its many branches and front organizations will also go under. If ACORN indeed goes kaput, all the more reason for the Punk to find some other organization to do his bidding.
Lastly, we should never forget that it was Obama who said these cryptic words in the midst of the 2008 presidential campaign, on July 2, in Colorado Springs: “We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded” as the U.S. military.
Nor should we forget what Obama’s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel once said about the need for a “mandatory civil service plan” (h/t May!)
So, Mr. Morrissey, if we bloggers get alarmed by references in the ObamaCare bill — a bill the Punk was hellbent on ramming down our throats despite a majority of Americans opposed to it — to a “Commissoned Corps” and a “Regular Reserve Corps” whose officers will be appointed solely by Obama, we surely have good reasons. In fact, it is you who should perhaps restrain your rather bovine complacency.
Here’s my original post “Red Alert! ObamaCare Creates Private Army”:
Remember what Nancy Pelosi said on March 10 that “we have to pass the [ObamaCare] bill so that you can find out what is in it”? At the time, what she said sounded utterly moronic and laughable.
Well, turns out the joke’s on us.
Now that the bill has become law, we are finding out the horrors that are in the bill, the biggest one being the creation of nothing other than a private army for The Punk, called the Commissioned Corps (CC) and the Ready Reserve Corps (RRC) — or as the Punk would pronounce it, the Commissioned Corpse and the Ready Reserve Corpse. Why two separate corps and what the differences are are not clear, other than that the officers of the RRC are appointed solely by the President. In effect, the RRC would be sort of like the Punk’s pathetic version of Hitler’s SS.
The commissioned officers of the Regular Reserve Corps will be appointed solely by the President, whereas those of the Commissioned Corps will be appointed by the President with the approval of the Senate. All commissioned officers will be appointed without regard to civil-service laws, their compensation without regard to the Classification Act of 1923. (What does this mean? Does “without regard to civil-service laws” mean that appointees do not have to meet criteria of civil service appointments, such as those of education, training, qualification, and FBI clearance? Does compensation “without regard to the Classification Act of 1923″ mean that Obama can bypass Congressional approval of funding?)
The relevant section begins on page 1312 of the Senate ObamaCare bill that was approved by the Demonrats in the House of Representatives last Sunday night. You can read it with your own eyes by clicking HERE:
SEC. 430. ESTABLISHING A READY RESERVE CORPS.
Section 203 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 204) is amended to read as follows:
SEC. 203. COMMISSIONED CORPS AND READY RESERVE CORPS.
(1) IN GENERAL. There shall be in the Service a commissioned Regular Corps and a Ready Reserve Corps for service in time of national emergency.
(2) REQUIREMENT. All commissioned officers shall be citizens of the United States and shall be appointed without regard to the civil-service laws and compensated without regard to the Classification Act of 1923, as amended.
(3) APPOINTMENT. Commissioned officers of the Ready Reserve Corps shall be appointed by the President and commissioned officers of the Regular Corps shall be appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate.
(4) ACTIVE DUTY. Commissioned officers of the Ready Reserve Corps shall at all times be subject to call to active duty by the Surgeon General, including active duty for the purpose of training.
(5) WARRANT OFFICERS. Warrant officers may be appointed to the Service for the purpose of providing support to the health and delivery systems maintained by the Service and any warrant officer appointed to the Service shall be considered for purposes of this Act and title 37, United States Code, to be a commissioned officer within the Commissioned Corps of the Service.
(b) ASSIMILATING RESERVE CORP OFFICERS INTO THE REGULAR CORPS. Effective on the date of enactment of the Affordable Health Choices Act, all individuals classified as officers in the Reserve Corps under this section (as such section existed on the day before the date of enactment of such Act) and serving on active duty shall be deemed to be commissioned officers of the Regular Corps.
(c) PURPOSE AND USE OF READY RESERVE.
(1) PURPOSE. The purpose of the Ready Reserve Corps is to fulfill the need to have additional Commissioned Corps personnel available on short notice (similar to the uniformed service’s reserve program) to assist regular Commissioned Corps personnel to meet both routine public health and emergency response missions.
(2) USES.The Ready Reserve Corps shall
(A) participate in routine training to meet the general and specific needs of the Commissioned Corps;
(B) be available and ready for involuntary calls to active duty during national emergencies and public health crises, similar to the uniformed service reserve personnel;
(C) be available for backfilling critical positions left vacant during deployment of active duty Commissioned Corps members, as well as for deployment to respond to public health emergencies, both foreign and domestic; and
(D) be available for service assignment in isolated, hardship, and medically underserved communities (as defined in section 399SS) to improve access to health services.
(d) FUNDING. For the purpose of carrying out the duties and responsibilities of the Commissioned Corps under this section, there are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to the Office of the Surgeon General for each of fiscal years 2010 through 2014. Funds appropriated under this subsection shall be used for recruitment and training of Commissioned Corps Officers.
Spread the word!
Call/fax/write your rep. and senators and DEMAND their explanation. Contact GOP members of the House and Senate and DEMAND to know why their well-compensated staff did not discover this, so that We the People have to find this out from blogs and e-mail. And if the GOP did know, DEMAND their accounting of why they did not bring this up and dispute this on the floor of Congress.
Call in to radio talk shows. Write letters to editors. Broadcast this on your blogs. E-mail this to your family, friends, and colleagues. If you know members of the U.S. Armed Services, alert them about this and ask them what they intend to do about it.
This is no longer fun and games. THIS IS SERIOUS. DO SOMETHING!
A huge h/t to new FellowshipOfMinds member May. Please check out her blog HERE!