Sunday, April 10, 2011

Gulag-Style Camps In America Within a Decade?

By Barb Adams
GCN Live.com
April 8, 2011
http://www.gcnlive.com/wp/2011/04/08/gulag-style-camps-in-america-within-a-decade/

Could gulag-style camps actually happen in America within a decade? Perhaps infrastructures are already in place for not only gulag-style corrective labor camps, but also the rise of a despotic regime. If you study history, it becomes clear that there is a “blueprint” for creating a dictatorship out of an open society, and that blueprint has been used repeatedly and effectively. As difficult as this is for most Americans to contemplate, if you are willing to look, the warning signs become clear.

Author Preston Fleming (Forty Days at Kamas, and Amerika Now’s guest this Saturday, April 9th) has studied the stages to tyranny and concluded that there are five distinct steps to creating life under an authoritarian regime. These steps include (1) concentration of power, (2) corruption (evidenced by state collusion with big business and organized crime), (3) polarization (the new Exit Tax, fraud in elections, gun control, domestic surveillance), (4) crisis (both natural and man-made), and (5) conflict (where the president may use military troops as domestic police in response to a disaster, disease outbreak, terrorist attack or any ‘other’ condition–a violation of the Posse Comitatus Act).

Of course, the United States is not vulnerable to the violent overthrow of our system like Hitler’s roundup of political prisoners. Our democratic habits are too resilient and our judiciary too independent for that type of scenario. Rather, as Fleming points out, our democracy could be taken down by a process of erosion.

It is a mistake to think that early in a fascist shift you see the obvious signs, the barbed wire of gulag camps. In the early stages everything seems normal; the horror is always somewhere else. As Americans turn away leisurely, the foundations of democracy are being fatally corroded. Under the foundation of all the still-free-looking institutions, this erosion can give way under certain kinds of pressure. To prevent such an outcome, we must think about the “what ifs.”

What if there already exists in America a prison-industrial complex http://core.ecu.edu/soci/juskaa/SOCI2110/Prison_Industrial_Complex.htm , with many states having prison unions, and private prisons offering opportunities to purchase stock. FEMA is now part of Homeland Security, and the FEMA camps around the country http://www.campfema.com/ could easily be converted into gulags. In the last 10 years federal code has been exploding, and new regulatory laws require imprisonment for minor infractions. States are requiring licenses for jobs that never before had to be licensed; and one in 31 people currently are in prison or on parole or probation.

It appears Americans are trading their freedoms for comfort and seeming securities, believing that “It can’t happen here.” But according to author Preston Fleming it not only can happen here, we are dangerously close.

Founding father James Madison wrote that “The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands…is the definition of tyranny.” We still have the choice to stop going down this road.

Barb Adams is the host of Amerika Now, which airs on GCN every Saturday night from 9:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. CST at http://podcast.gcnlive.com/podcast/amerikaNow/pcast.php or http://www.gcnlive.com/mediaPlayers/odPlayer.php?program=amerikaNow . Join her every week for a dose of reality, solutions, some great tunes, and the search for truth.

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