Good things do come out of the Virginia state legislature. That normally reprehensible body has just stood up to the federal outrage that has come to be known as the NDAA. The letters stand for the National Defense Authorization Act, but at issue here is not the bulk of that bill. Virginia’s state government has no objection to dumping our grandchildren’s unearned pay into the pockets of war profiteers while our schools lack funding. At issue is the presidential power to lock people up without a trial, which was slipped into the latest military funding bill late last year and signed into law by President Barack Obama on New Year’s Eve. In fact, Virginia’s legislature does not object to that abuse except in one particular circumstance, namely when the victim of it is a U.S. citizen. But in that circumstance, Virginia says Hell No.
Locally in Charlottesville, we rallied at Republican Congressman Robert Hurt’s office.
We urged him to vote No, and he did so, saying:
“After studying the controversial provisions and after hearing from many in the Fifth District, I concluded that the detainee provisions in the bill did not provide clear and unambiguous protection of the constitutional rights of American citizens. For this reason, I opposed the bill on final passage.”
Groups from across the political spectrum, including the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, urged passage of a bill in Virginia’s state legislature to nullify the new provisions.
Both houses have now passed the bill by veto-proof margins.
Phi Beta Iota: Nullification is the softer gentler preamble to secession. The states, many of them over-invested in Federal bonds and many of them facing their own financial crises, are now starting to plan for the collapse of the US Goverment or economy, and becoming more alert to opportunities of state nullification of federal mandates. During this transition period resilience and sustainability will be “bottom-up” in nature, and those states that “assume” a loss of all federal funding after 2013, and plan for it, will do better than those states that assume federal (borrowed) largesse will continue. This will impact heavily on universities that rely on federal funding for most of their research.