America Fails the 'Rule of Law' Test … The U.S. doesn't even come close to meeting the standards articulated by its own army. Why isn't establishment Washington alarmed? … The U.S. Army field manual defines "the rule of law" as follows: "The rule of law refers to a principle of governance in which all persons, institutions and entities, public and private, including the State itself, are accountable to laws that are publicly promulgated, equally enforced, and independently adjudicated, and which are consistent with international human rights norms and standards. It requires, as well, measures to ensure adherence to the principles of supremacy of law, equality before the law, accountability to the law, fairness in the application of the law, separation of powers, participation in decision-making, legal certainty, avoidance of arbitrariness and procedural and legal transparency." Going by that definition, the U.S. government does not operate according to the rule of law. – The Atlantic
Dominant Social Theme: The US is a lawful country, top to bottom.
Free-Market Analysis: Here comes The Atlantic magazine – that bastion of international socialism – with a scathing article about the US's rising lawlessness.
Of course, we have no idea why this article appeared in The Atlantic, a publication dedicated to advancing an ever-closer union between the US and Europe.
Perhaps the disconnect between what the US is supposed to stand for and the reality is simply getting too large to ignore. Alternatively, The Atlantic – as befits a publication involved in the globalist dialectic – is simply doing its share to inform readers that US lawlessness is growing worse, and that there is nothing they can do about it. Its goal is not solution but demoralization.
Call this the "Snowden gambit." Perhaps the article has a larger aim, which is to intimidate under the guise of providing an expose. This would make sense given The Atlantic's service to the cause of internationalism.
A panel of former executive-branch employees, many of whom served in the U.S. military or the CIA, made this point bluntly in a recent report on drones. "Despite the undoubted good faith of US decision-makers, it would be difficult to conclude that US targeted strikes are consistent with core rule of law norms," they declared.
"From the perspective of many around the world, the U.S. appears to claim, in effect, the legal right to kill any person it determines is a member of al-Qaida or its associated forces, in any state on Earth, at any time, based on secret criteria and secret evidence, evaluated in a secret process by unknown and largely anonymous individuals—with no public disclosure of which organizations are considered 'associated forces,' no means for anyone outside that secret process to raise questions about the criteria or validity of the evidence, and no means for anyone outside that process to identify or remedy mistakes or abuses."
Just so. Unfortunately, the U.S. government violates "rule of law" norms in other areas too. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court does not operate with "procedural and legal transparency." The Office of Legal Counsel adopts highly contestable yet totally secret interpretations of statutes that dramatically affect policy outcomes. Citizens and corporations are served with secret court orders and often feel confused about whether they are even permitted to consult with counsel.
Laws against revealing classified information are not enforced equally—powerful actors routinely leak official secrets with impunity, while whistleblowers and dissidents are aggressively persecuted for the mere "mishandling" of state secrets.
The director of national intelligence committed perjury without consequence. President Obama has blatantly violated a duly ratified, legally binding treaty that requires him to investigate and prosecute acts of torture. He also violated the War Powers Resolution by participating in the military overthrow of Muammar Qaddafi without securing the approval of Congress.
And he won't even clarify exactly what groups he considers us to be at war with! That is only a partial list. The rule of law's erosion in post-9/11 America was begun by the Bush administration and continued by the Obama administration. Congress has failed to stop it.
Congress? … When the article reaches such conclusions, we find it less convincing. It does, however, point out that there is no end date for a "war on terror." Thus, those invoking the "war" to justify lawless actions may continue down this path, confident that there will be no peacetime, and thus no accountability for their behavior.
The article concludes by arguing that "Congress must stop abdicating its responsibilities," and that transparency must again be applied to the actions of the federal government. Please, no …
Change will not come because the military-industrial complex has a change of heart. That is a fairly far-fetched proposal. What could happen, sooner or later, is that the individual mass of citizenry – especially in the US and possibly in Europe – will realize what is taking place and the freedoms they are losing.
It is the withdrawal of acceptance of elite dominant social themes that will gradually change the texture and composition of state authority. This event would affect not only the citizenry but also those who are tasked with enforcing such authoritarian memes. The oath-keepers movement – aimed at law enforcement – is symptomatic of this kind of change.
What is going on seems to us to be entirely planned out. 9/11 was the trigger but Homeland Security has provided the ammunition for the solution (literally). It is perfectly possible that the next step will be some sort of provoked revolution.
But this kind of violence should be resisted. Voltaire wrote that one must "tend to one's own garden," and that is certainly true in this day and age. Prudent preparations to protect oneself and one's family are certain advised.
If The Atlantic acknowledges what is taking place – an unusual occurrence to be sure – we ought to be able to do the same. And unlike what the The Atlantic suggests, we don't need to wait for the authorities to have a change of heart to take our own human action.