Tag Archives: Budget Control Act of 2011

U.S. Citizens Still Subject to Detention w/out Trial in Final Version of Defense Bill

The House and Senate Armed Services Committees met last Monday to “reconcile” the two respective versions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 which the House (HR 1540) and the Senate (S 1867) had passed.
It appears they’ve removed U.S. citizens from S. 1867 Section 1031’s arrest and detention without charge or trial. But then, it doesn’t.
Donna Cassata of the AP reports, Dec. 13, 2011:

WASHINGTON –  Congress is pressing ahead with a massive $662 billion defense bill that requires military custody for terrorism suspects linked to al-Qaida, including those captured within the U.S., with lawmakers hoping their last-minute revisions will mollify President Barack Obama and eliminate a veto threat.

Leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services Committees announced late Monday that they had reached agreement on the policy-setting legislation that had gotten caught up in an escalating fight on whether to treat suspected terrorists as prisoners of war or criminals in the civilian justice system. […]

The lawmakers said they hoped the House and Senate could vote on the final bill by Thursday and send it to the president.

The issue of how to handle captured terrorist suspects has divided Obama’s senior national security officials and Congress, as well as Democrats and Republicans.

The administration insists that military, law enforcement and intelligence officials need flexibility in prosecuting the war on terror. Obama points to his administration’s successes in eliminating Osama bin Laden and radical Islamic cleric Anwar al-Awlaki. Republicans counter that their efforts are necessary to respond to an evolving, post-Sept. 11 threat, and that Obama has failed to produce a consistent policy on handling terror suspects.

The bill would require that the military take custody of a suspect deemed to be a member of al-Qaida or its affiliates who is involved in plotting or committing attacks on the United States, with an exemption for U.S. citizens.

Several paragraphs after that, however, there’s this paragraph:

The legislation would deny suspected terrorists, even U.S. citizens seized within the nation’s borders, the right to trial and subject them to indefinite detention. The lawmakers made no changes to that language.

I’m thoroughly confused. I will need to find and read the final “reconciled” version of the NDAA, but the bill is not yet available on the Library of Congress’ Thomas website.
At this point, it looks to me that this “reconciled” version has retained S. 1867’s Sections 1031 and 1032. The “exemption for U.S. citizens” pertains to Sec. 1032; the indefinite detention and denial of the right to trial to “even U.S. citizens” pertains to S.1867’s Sec. 1031 — the same Sec. 1031 that we find so problematic and threatening.
Nothing’s changed.
So much for conservatives putting our hopes in Congressman Allen West, who’s a member of the “conference committee” that produced this reconciled version of the NDAA. If you need more confirmation that Allen West is an enemy of freedom, listen to Glenn Beck’s radio interview of West on the NDAA yesterday. Go here. I heard it live and was ready to spit nails.
Allen West also voted for the Budget Control Act of 2011, the passage of which immediately increased our national debt ceiling by $2+ trillion.
I will do everything I can to see that Allen West does not get re-elected.

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Allen West is on the National Defense Authorization Act committee

Our concerns about Sec. 1031 are ignored. The reconcile conference committee has produced a final version of NDAA, which Obama says he will not veto. US citizens are NOT exempted from being arrested and detained without charge or trial. See my post of Dec. 14, 2011: “U.S. Citizens Still Subject to Detention w/out Trial in Final Version of Defense Bill.”
See also, “There Really Are FEMA Camps.”

Congressman Allen West (R-Florida) has been named a member of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (NDAA) Conference, reports Right Side News, Dec. 9, 2011.
The Senate version of the NDAA, S. 1867, is that obscene piece of legislation that authorizes the President to have the military arrest and detain, without charge or trial, certain “covered persons” (in S 1867’s Sec. 1031) “at war” with the United States. But those “covered persons” can include U.S. citizens.
S. 1867 also contains Sec. 551(d) that, by repealing Art. 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, effectively legalizes sodomy and bestiality in the U.S. military.
It should be noted that the House version of the NDAA, HR1540, does neither.
The NDAA Conference is a select group of bipartisan members from both the U. S. House of Representatives and the Senate which will begin hammering out the final provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012.
If you think the appointment of Allen West to the NDAA Conference automatically means he will seek to eliminate S. 1867’s Sec. 1301 and 551(d), don’t. This is the comment West made on his appointment:

“It is an honor to be a member of the conference setting policies for the Department of Defense to be successful in keeping our country safe. As a 22-year United States Army Veteran, I look forward to sharing my insight on what I believe is most important in this bill – a bill that will ultimately determine the future of our Armed Services. It is important the final version of the National Defense Authorization Act include the cuts to wasteful defense spending I proposed. It is also just as important that the NDAA protect essential Defense programs. I am confident my 22 years in the United States Army will provide insight to the conference.”

That suggests all West cares about are defense spending and cuts. Forget not that West had voted in favor of the debt deal Obama made with Congress, aka the oxymoronic Budget Control Act of 2011, which raised the debt ceiling of the already heavily indebted federal government by $2+ trillion.
Please contact Congressman West to convey to him your concerns about the detention without trial of U.S. citizens and the legalization of sodomy and bestiality in the U.S. military. Here’s his contact info:

1708 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
ph: 202-225-3026 • fx: 202-225-8398

H/t beloved fellow Tina.

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Newsweek Going After Michele Bachmann

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, a TEA Party favorite, is one of the 66 House Republicans who refused to vote for Obama’s disastrous debt deal, aka the Budget Control Addicted to Debt Act of 2011. The passage of that act immediately led S&P to downgrade America’s credit rating.
Bachmann is also polling well among Republican voters. And so, of course, like a pack of ravenous wolves, the Left are already pouncing on her, with Hollywood’s pro-gay brigade leading the way.
Now the MSM are joining the jihad.
The upcoming edition of Newsweek magazine has a cover story on Michele Bachmann titled, “The Queen of Rage.” This is the photo of Bachmann which Newsweek has on its cover.
Tell me if you don’t think she looks just a tad crazy.

Bachmann made the mistake of letting Newsweek‘s photographer Chris Buck take the picture.
When will Conservatives ever learn that the MSM are not our friends; will never be objective, even less our friends; and will do their utmost to make Conservatives look bad.
If you want a friend, get a dog!
H/t beloved fellow Siegfried.

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5 Money Moves to Shelter Yourself From the Debt Storm

Now that Obama’s signed into law the Budget Control Addicted to Debt Act of 2011, here are 5 recommended money moves for ordinary Americans to make to protect ourselves from the fallout:

1. Reduce Your defense stocks and all government contractors

Since defense is targeted for billions of dollars of spending cuts, investors should dig into their 10K annual reports of companies to see how dependent they are on government work. Defense contractors are likely to lose business as these cuts work their way through the system, but so will other government contractors, and state contractors too, as already recession-pinched states will lose some federal funding. Charles Rotblut of the American Association of Individual Investors counsels,
“Stock investors who have companies that depend on government financing should monitor their holdings carefully. Infrastructure is at particular risk, because it’s going to be a lot harder for states to work on bridges, roads and highways.”

2. Relax a little about your bonds

With Congress making good on U.S. obligations, that diminishes the possibility of a ratings downgrade pushing Treasury rates up. And the bill’s budget cuts, which mainly don’t go into effect until 2013 at the earliest, could crimp economic growth, delaying the rise of interest rates. Don Martin of Mayflower Capital in Los Altos, California says, “Bonds are not as scary as before. The economy has hit stall speed and is beginning to slip back into a recession, so with the reduction of government stimulus caused by austerity this means that stocks will go down and bonds will go up.” Investors still may want to move their bond holdings to a less-concentrated, shorter-term or more cautious approach, but there’s less need to panic about them.

3. Pay off your student loans

The debt bill will eliminate the rebate that education borrowers get when they make a year’s worth of loan payments on time. But they still may be able to get an interest-rate discount if they arrange to make their payments automatically through a bank account debit.
Many graduate students will have to pay more for loans, as this deal eliminates the federal subsidies that paid interest costs on some of their loans while they were in school. Grad students may find it worthwhile to pay the interest themselves while they are in school, if they can, to avoid those costs compounding until after they graduate.

4. Defer your Social Security benefits

Every year that you defer starting your Social Security (SS) retirement benefits, they rise by almost 8%. The new law’s Super Committee of 12 may nip SS recipients’ cost-of-living adjustments (COLA). Starting your SS benefits early means you relinquish that 8% a year increase and, should the COLA be nipped, start giving up buying power sooner. Mark Berg, of Timothy Financial Counsel, a fee-only financial planning firm, advises: “That would be a significant problem for clients who rely on Social Security. We would encourage a wait approach on Social Security if the client can afford it.”

5. Pay off your debts and Save, Save, Save

Bedda D’Angelo, president of Fiduciary Solutions, a Durham, North Carolina, financial-planning firm, says: “If we have learned anything from this crisis, it’s not to depend on the government for anything. Entitlements change with the wind. Since pensions are being phased out too, the only sane thing to do is max out your tax-deferred retirement savings accounts.”
Advisers have been telling their clients to get defensive for some time: Investors who pay down their debts, move more of their bond money to shorter-term instruments and their stock money to defensive dividend-earning stocks will be better prepared for whatever the government throws at them next.
Money manager Daniel Romero, of Romery & Levin Wealth Management in Santa Ana, California, has had his clients building reserves, paying down debts and diversifying broadly into commodities, Japanese stocks, and natural resources stocks: “This is the fourth or fifth Armageddon situation that’s come across our desk in recent years. Just put yourself in a situation where it won’t affect you so much.”
[Source: Linda Stearn’s article for Reuters, August 2, 2011]
H/t beloved fellow Anon.

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What Do Conservatives Do Now?

Yesterday, the disastrous so-called Budget Control Act of 2011 became law. The law increases the US debt limit by more than $2 trillion; promises spending cuts that include defense; and creates a Super Committee of 12 who can raise taxes and cut entitlements.
Many conservatives feel dismayed and discouraged. We’ve played, peacefully, by the rules. We formed or joined TEA (Taxed Enough Already) Party groups; blogged; wrote/called the White House and our representatives in Washington, DC; and dutifully trotted to the voting booths last November 2nd. Our efforts were rewarded with a historic midterm election that voted in a tidal wave of Republicans to state governorships, to the U.S. Senate, and to form a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Despite all our efforts, the Republicans in the House caved in and approved the debt deal with Obama. And so, yesterday Obama signed the bill into law.
Adding to our disillusionment is the fact that 70% of the GOP freshman class had voted to support the budget deal, among them is Florida’s Allen West. Many of the turncoats had been elected last November with the support of the Tea Party movement whose major cause is precisely that of cutting federal spending and reducing deficits.
So what do we do now?
I asked the other writers of the Fellowship to do some brainstorming. Simply and starkly, there really are only three choices:
1. Continue to work within the system:
We redouble our efforts and get ready for the 2012 elections. We vote out the GOP turncoats; re-elect those Republicans who had voted against the debt deal (go here for their names); vote for a true conservative in the Republican presidential primary; and most important of all, get Obama out of the White House! On that last task, here’s a hopeful message from political maven Dick Morris:
2. Overthrow the present corrupt system and restore the Constitution:
That’s a move never to be taken lightly, not only because of the certain losses of life and property, but also because of the uncertainty of success. As best as I know, there is not even a whiff of serious disaffection, even less of rebellion, among the U.S. military. But without the backing of the military, or at least a part of it, attempting a second American Revolution is quixotic and suicidal.
3. Drop out of the system:
We hit the bastards in the wallet and do whatever we can to cut off the flow of cash to Washington. We stop spending other than absolute necessities; do cash only transactions; cut up our credit cards; get our money out of banks, or at a minimum out of global banks and into local banks and credit unions. We circle the wagons, protect the homestead, and go into survivalist mode.
Seriously though, how many of us can or will do that?
So in the end, I keep coming back to Option One: Work Within the System. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is there more I can do, in labor and dollars, to get the right people into office?
  • Am I in good fighting shape — physically, mentally, spiritually — for the battle? If not, get in shape!
  • If I am able (financially, family-wise) and have the aptitude (knowledge and understanding of politics; public speaking) to run for public office, why am I not doing it? Whom am I waiting for?
  • If I feel besieged, what about those House Republicans who went against their leader, that spineless RINO John Boehner, and voted against the debt deal? If your Congressman/woman is one of the 66 Samurai, send them a “Thank You” note or phonecall! (go here for the names of the 66).

Lastly, do not give in to despair. That’s a sure way for our opponents to win.
There is always hope.
I welcome your suggestions, ideas, proposals.

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The 66 Samurai: Republicans Who Voted Against Debt Deal

Remember these names.
If your Congressman/woman is one of the 66 Samurai, send them a “Thank You” note or phonecall! To contact your representative, go here.
Re-elect them in 2012. Vote against any Republican whose name isn’t on the lists below, esp. the traitor Allen West who now calls “schizophrenic” the very same Tea Partiers who had got him into the House of Representatives last November.
Republicans in the United States House of Representatives who voted against the final debt deal on August 1, 2011:

  1. Akin, Todd (Missouri)
  2. Amash, Justin (Michigan)
  3. Bachmann, Michele (Minnesota)
  4. Bishop, Rob (Utah)
  5. Brooks, Mo (Alabama)
  6. Broun, Paul (Georgia)
  7. Buerkle, Ann Marie (NY)
  8. Burton, Dan (Indiana)
  9. Chaffetz, Jason (Utah)
  10. Cravaack, Chip (Minnesota)
  11. Davis, Geoff (Kentucky)
  12. DesJarlais, Scott (Tennessee)
  13. Duncan, Jeff (South Carolina)
  14. Flake, Jeff (Arizona)
  15. Fleischmann, Chuck (Tennessee)
  16. Fleming, John (Louisiana)
  17. Forbes, Randy (Virginia)
  18. Franks, Trent (AZ)
  19. Garrett, Scott (New Jersey)
  20. Gingrey, Phil (Georgia)
  21. Gohmert, Louie (Texas)
  22. Gowdy, Trey (SC)
  23. Graves, Tom (Georgia)
  24. Griffith, Morgan (Virginia)
  25. Hall, Ralph (Texas)
  26. Harris, Andy (Maryland)
  27. Hartzler, Vicky (Missouri)
  28. Huelskamp, Tim (Kansas)
  29. Hultgren, Randy (Illinois)
  30. Hunter, Duncan (Calif)
  31. Johnson, Tim (Illinois)
  32. Jones, Walter (North Carolina)
  33. Jordan, Jim (Ohio)
  34. King, Steve (Iowa)
  35. Kingston, Jack (Georgia)
  36. Labrador, Raul (Idaho)
  37. Lamborn, Doug (Colorado)
  38. Landry, Jeff (Louisiana)
  39. Latham, Tom (Iowa)
  40. Mack, Connie (Florida)
  41. McClintock, Tom (California)
  42. Mulvaney, Mick (SC)
  43. Neugebauer, Randy (Texas)
  44. Nunes, Devin (Calif.)
  45. Paul, Ron (Texas)
  46. Pearce, Steve (New Mexico)
  47. Poe, Ted (Texas)
  48. Posey, Bill (Florida)
  49. Quayle, Ben (Arizona)
  50. Rehberg, Denny (Montana)
  51. Roby, Martha (Alabama)
  52. Rokita, Todd (Indiana)
  53. Ross, Dennis (Florida)
  54. Scalise, Steve (Louisiana)
  55. Schweikert, David (Arizona)
  56. Scott, Tim (SC)
  57. Scott, Austin (Georgia)
  58. Southerland, Steve (Florida)
  59. Stearns, Cliff (Florida)
  60. Stutzman, Marlin (Indiana)
  61. Tipton, Scott (Colorado)
  62. Turner, Michael (Ohio)
  63. Walsh, Joe (Illinois)
  64. Westmoreland, Lynn (Georgia)
  65. Wilson, Joe (SC)
  66. Yoder, Kevin (Kansas)

Republicans in the United States Senate who voted against the final debt deal on August 2, 2011:

  1. Ayotte, Kelly (NH)
  2. Chambliss, Saxby (GA)
  3. Coats, Dan (IN)
  4. Coburn, Tom (OK)
  5. DeMint, Jim (SC)
  6. Graham, Lindsey (SC)
  7. Grassley, Chuck (IA)
  8. Hatch, Orrin (UT)
  9. Heller, Dean (NV)
  10. Inhofe, James (OK)
  11. Johnson, Ron (WI)
  12. Lee, Mike (UT)
  13. Moran, Jerry (KS)
  14. Paul, Rand (KY)
  15. Rubio, Marco (FL)
  16. Sessions, Jeff (AL)
  17. Shelby, Richard (AL)
  18. Toomey, Pat (PA)
  19. Vitter, David (LA)

H/t MoreWhat.com.
For why the debt deal, aka the misnamed Budget Control Act of 2011 (it will do no such thing), is bad for America, see “The Devil is in the Details of Obama’s Debt Deal.”

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The Devil is in the Details of Obama's Debt Deal

The fine print of the hastily-put-together debt ceiling bill passed by Congress and signed into law by Obama yesterday is still hazy. But the details that are emerging are worrisome. Here are 3 bad things about the Budget Control Act of 2011:

No. 1: debt ceiling raised by $2+ trillion

The U.S. federal government’s debt limit is immediately increased $2.2 to 2.4 trillion, the biggest explosion of debt in American history. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), who voted against the bill, says the bill will add another $7 trillion to our national debt.
By this Christmas, 2011, US national debt will be $15 trillion — a sum that exceeds 20% of the entire world’s combined GDP (Gross Domestic Product) and 100% of America’s GDP. This is the same 100%+ debt-to-GDP ratio of the bankrupt European PIIGS (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Spain). The only difference between the USA and the PIIGs is that there’ll be no European Union Germany to bail us out.

No. 2: Cuts to defense

The law calls for $917 billion in spending cuts over a span of 10 years. But in contrast to the Boehner-GOP proposal, the cuts are no longer restricted to non-defense discretionary spending!
Discretionary spending is that part of the U.S. federal budget that includes everything that is not in the mandatory budget. The latter, mandatory budget, refers to entitlement programs required by law to provide certain benefits, such as Social Security and Medicare.
Discretionary spending in FY 2010 was $1.3 trillion, or 38% of total spending. More than half ($815 billion) was security spending, which includes the Department of Defense, overseas contingency programs and Homeland Security. Non-security spending was $491 billion, which was spent on such departments as Health and Human Services ($84 billion), Education ($64.3 billion), Housing and Urban Development ($42.8 billion) Justice ($27.6 billion), and Agriculture ($25 billion).
According to a Reuters article by Linda Stearn, August 2, 2011, almost all discretionary federal spending will face some cuts over the next 10 years, with defense spending taking a comparatively heavy hit of about $350 billion of the projected cuts.

No. 3: Super Committee can raise taxes & cut entitlements

More ominously still, the deal sets up a bipartisan 12-member congressional committee to find another $1.5 trillion in cuts. But the Super Committee is not restricted to just discretionary spending cuts! Instead, its menu is wide open and can include Social Security reductions or tax increases. If that committee fails to come up with at least $1.2 trillion in savings – or Congress doesn’t approve its recommendations by December 23 – automated cuts begin to get triggered. Those cuts would be deep, hitting Medicare and the military but sparing Social Security, Medicaid and a handful of other programs.
Remember the Republicans who voted for this bill. I’ll find out who they are and post their names in a post to come.
H/t beloved fellow Anon.

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