So by now news about about §1021 & §1022 of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is widespread. But in the event you’re just getting up to speed — understandable given the almost total media blackout until just the past week or so — the sections cited above give the President authority to militarily detain anyone in the world on a whim, even United States citizens on United States soil, indefinitely, without trial or charges.
NDAA 2012 also allows the Defense Department to “conduct offensive operations in cyberspace to defend our Nation, Allies and interests“ at the direction of the President.
NDAA 2012 wipes away the entire Bill of Rights for all United States citizens. As of this writing, it has passed both the House and Senate, and President Obama is slated to sign it into law sometime in the next day or so.
This comes just a month after the coordinated nationwide crackdown on Occupy Wall Street. While the bill is supposed to be targeted toward Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and their supporters, it is quite obvious that these laws can almost certainly be used against OWS protesters and supporters.
What concerns me most about this is what a dominionist president would do with it.
NDAA Subsection D and a dominionist administration
Dominionism is, essentially, the overtly theocratic branch of the Christian right. Dominionists believe the entire world needs to be brought under theocratic Christian rule in order for Jesus to return. Jesus can’t return until this happens.
This group was once the far fringe of Evangelical doctrine. But among current Republican candidates, Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann both have very public ties to dominionist organizations. Sarah Palin, for her part, also has ties to dominionism.
The movement to which all three have been linked is called the New Apostolic Reformation. NAR believes the “seven mountains” of influence in culture — church, business, government, media, education, the arts, and family — are controlled by demons that must be exorcised if Christian dominion over the Earth is to occur. Rachel Tabachnik at Talk To Action summarizes:
The apostles teach that the obstacles to their envisioned Kingdom on earth are literal demonic beings who hold control over geographic territory and specific “people groups.” They claim this demonic control is the reason why people of other religions refuse to become evangelized and that the demons are also the source of crime, corruption, illness, poverty, and homosexuality. Purging of the demons results in mass evangelization and eradication of social ills, as claimed in the Transformations, media. The apostles teach that their followers are currently receiving an outpouring of supernatural powers to help them fight these demons through what they call Strategic Level Spiritual Warfare (SLSW).
With NDAA granting the President such extraordinary power, what is to stop him or her from disappearing people in the interest of exorcising the demons of influence in culture?
A stretch? Really? It fits right in with the Bush Doctrine
That may sound like a stretch to a lot of people, but let me throw something else out there.
On September 20, 2011, former president Bush offered up this view in language coded such that Evangelicals would understand, but would sail right over the heads of everyone else:
We will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime.
This statement became the foundation of the so-called Bush Doctrine. What few realize is that the bolded statement above (my emphasis) is not something Bush dreamed up himself. This is a paraphrase of Matthew 12:30, a quote from Jesus:
Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.
More to the point, the entire passage from which which Bush’s paraphrase was taken describes how Jesus cast demons out of a man possessed:
Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you… Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
This is what Evangelicals heard Bush say. This is why they believed he was God’s chosen servant to wage war against “terror.” I know this because I was raised as a fundamentalist, Evangelical, pentecostal, charismatic Christian and to this day I still speak fluent Christianese. To Evangelicals, “terrorists” are precisely the same as possessing demonic entities that must be driven out by force. There can be no compromise, no negotiation, no “understanding” their “point of view.” They are, quite simply, inhuman beings incapable of anything except evil.
Terrorist = demon = protesters
Occupy Wall Street represents a serious competition for the “seven mountains.” OWS is motivated by the very things NAR considers to be caused by demons: poverty, crime, corruption, illness (a.k.a., healthcare). OWS’s analysis of the situation is more Earthly, however: these problems are caused not by demons, but by actual human beings who can be held accountable by secular law. Moreover, the corruption these humans have spread throughout the “seven mountains” can also be remedied by secular law.
What dominionists see is that OWS is trying to drive out Beelzebub by Beelzebub, threatening the future of the United States. Therefore, OWS is one of those demon-controlled “people groups” that must be purged.
And if demons control both terrorists and OWS, then OWS must be terrorist.
Again I ask: with NDAA granting the President such extraordinary power, what is to stop him or her from disappearing people in the interest of exorcising the demons of influence in culture? What is to stop the conflation of OWS with terrorists? More protests? Appeals to reason? The courts?
The Bush Doctrine provided the first half of this diabolical calculus. The NAR provides the second. In the dark night of another born-again Evangelical administration, can anyone doubt that someone with too much power will fit the halves together?