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The House GIVEth, and the government taketh away (our freedoms)

The so-called "GIVE" and "SERVE" Acts (and you thought the PATRIOT Act had a groan-inducing name) haven't been covered very well by mainstream media, but lately a lot of bloggers and commentators have been going through the bills. What they have found is not comforting. Michelle Malkin writes:

The House passed the "Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act" - or the GIVE Act - last week. The Senate took up the companion "SERVE Act" Tuesday afternoon. According to a Congressional Budget Office analysis of the Senate bill, S. 277, the bill would cost "$418 million in 2010 and about $5.7 billion over the 2010-2014 period." And like most federal programs, these would be sure to grow over time. The bills reauthorize the Clinton-era Americorps boondoggle program and an older law, the Domestic Volunteer Service Act of 1973.

The GIVE Act expands the Peace Corps and creates a plethora of other government-run civil service agencies including the Civilian Community Corps, Clean Energy Corps, Healthy Future Corps, Veteran's Services Corps, and the Education Corps. Supposedly all of these agencies will provide training, valuable experience, and an honest, productive time commitment for young people and the unemployed.

Now don't get me wrong. I would much rather see inner city teenagers working with elementary school kids than wasting their time on street corners dealing drugs or joining gangs. But I'm concerned about the fact that, no matter how cheerfully these programs are sold to us, they do not provide real employment opportunities; rather, they will only be low-paying, temporary government service positions in which the vast majority of enrollees will do little or nothing that is truly productive.

And then there is this whopper:

Under section 6104 of the bill, entitled Duties, in subsection B6, the legislation states that a commission will be set up to investigate whether a workable, fair, and reasonable mandatory service requirement for all able young people could be developed, and how such a requirement could be implemented in a manner that would strengthen the social fabric of the Nation and overcome civic challenges by bringing together people from diverse economic, ethnic, and educational backgrounds.

Section 120 of the bill also discusses the Youth Engagement Zone Program and states that service learning will be a mandatory part of the curriculum in all of the secondary schools served by the local educational agency. (emphasis added)

As Allahpundit notes, this is "the ultimate 'What if Bush did it?' hypothetical". And there is another pesky question: is mandatory government service outside of military conscription during a period of warfare even Constitutional?

Regardless, the idea of compulsory government service, combined with compulsory "charity" work financed by mandatory taxes does not sit well with me. Captain Ed Morissey agrees:

Ask college-age students how they feel about taking two years out of their post-educational lives to dig ditches and build bridges not because they want to do it, but because it will become illegal to refuse. I suspect they will start Google-mapping the best routes to Canada -- or stop voting for the people proposing to enslave them.

And given the deep ties between various community organizing efforts, labor unions, ACORN, and the Obama White House, there is also a real possibility that government sponsored service programs could become co-mingled with planned, partisan political activism. Consider this:

They have taken a pledge of loyalty to Obama, and they say they are coming tomorrow for yours. Organizing for America, the Obama-for-President campaign morphed into Obama-for-Maximum-Leader army, will hit the streets for their "Pledge Project Canvass," knocking on doors and accosting folks in parking lots and sidewalks to ask them to sign a pledge to support Obama's policies for health care, energy and education reform.

Organizing for America, a project of the Democratic National Committee, is variously described in the media as [President Obama's] "own version of a lobbying firm", "a parallel organization to the Democratic National Committee" and "an independent force to lobby for Obama's goals" (Houston Chronicle); "an independent group" (Dayton Daily News); Obama's "citizen army," and a way of building public opinion" (The Bergen County Record); "a grass-roots lobbying group," (Roll Call), "Obama 2.0" (Newark Star-Ledger), "a joint partnership," (DNC press release), and as a "political bully," (AP).

Make no mistake about this. This not a voluntary "grassroots" or "heartland" effort. "Organizing For America" is not community organizing; it is a political machine designed and controlled by the DNC in cooperation with the Obama White House. It would be very easy for an organization like OFA to train its workers to compile lists of the addresses of people who refused to sign their petition. That information, delivered into the wrong hands (like the IRS or the FBI), would effectively end our freedom of speech.

Using community volunteerism or compulsory government service as a doorway to partisan political indoctrination or activism constitutes a gross misuse of political power that can permanently end our ability to live as free Americans. Don't kid yourself into believing that it can't happen here.
________________________

ADDED: The "mandatory service requirement" language in HR 1388 was taken out before the House vote, but it was reintroduced as a separate bill, HR 1444, whose purpose is "To establish the Congressional Commission on Civic Service to study methods of improving and promoting volunteerism and national service, and for other purposes."


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Comments (22)

These disgusting unconstitu... (Below threshold)
914:

These disgusting unconstitutional brownshirt organizing Chicago thugs can all go to hell.

Obama may be good at nothin... (Below threshold)

Obama may be good at nothing else, but he is brilliant in his ability to acquire power. Keep your eyes on that man...no rest for the weary.
http://www.rightklik.net/

I refuse to sign up until I... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

I refuse to sign up until I'm GUARANTEED a brown uniform with a big red arm band with a black "O" in a white circle. Oh, and I want jack boots to. And a thick black Sam Browne belt. And a nifty dagger. Still debating the headgear. It's between a simple forager cap or a helmet. Haven't decided yet.

Will there be bonfire rallies to attend?

I'm to old for the Obama Yo... (Below threshold)
kevino:

I'm to old for the Obama Youth. No brown shirt for me: I'll take a black uniform with lightning bolts on the collar.

Obama meeting with key demo... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Obama meeting with key democrats: "There's nothing for people to worry about; it's just an extension of ACORN. The Obama youth will make sure everyone votes and votes correctly in all future elections. The only thing we need to figure out is how to get all those guns away form Americans. I know, we'll use the violence in Mexico as an excuse to outlaw guns. Heck, if we sign a treaty with Mexico that says we'll outlaw guns it, like all treaties, has the same legal weight as the constitution."

I can't say it any better t... (Below threshold)

I can't say it any better than Senator Jim DeMint did on the Senate Floor this week.

This unconsitutional mess is just wrong.

I have to confess that the ... (Below threshold)
glenn:

I have to confess that the idea, once you set aside all the Constitutional principles, of rounding up all those kids I see hanging out a couple of blocks from the local high schools and shuffling down the street in formerly nice neighborhoods and putting them to work doing all the stuff the illegal Mexicans are doing now has a nice ring to it. But........

Ok, maybe I was a little to... (Below threshold)
914:

Ok, maybe I was a little too harsh in my opening sentence.

Me and the kids will hop on down tomorrow and get in line for our uniforms and special teleprompter service badges.

Sorry Glenn, but that line ... (Below threshold)

Sorry Glenn, but that line "setting aside all the Constitutional principles.." is the exact problem that has created many of the problems. No more setting aside those principles.

And there is another pe... (Below threshold)

And there is another pesky question: is mandatory government service outside of military conscription during a period of warfare even Constitutional?

Piece of cake. You don't make it punishable by imprisonment - you just make it a requirement to get government college loans, to get a mortgage from a government backed or owned bank, to collect social security or medicare, to get health care (since the government will be running that), to get food stamps, to get unemployment benefits, to get a public service sector job, to get a drivers license...etc.

Oh Lord God help us all...c... (Below threshold)

Oh Lord God help us all...crap, did I say that out loud? I mean...there is no God and hail Obama...(where the hell did I put that NRA sticker?)

Is it irony that the first ... (Below threshold)

Is it irony that the first African American is pushing for involuntary servitude?

Is it irony that the fir... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

Is it irony that the first African American is pushing for involuntary servitude?

Well, his father was actually from Africa, and not a descendent of American slaves... so it's all good. Or something like that.

Uh, could I have another lo... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

Uh, could I have another look at that birth certificate?

It took 145 years from when... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

It took 145 years from when the white man freed the black to have the black man propose to put everyone into involuntary servitude, or for the educationally challenged "slavery".

Uh, could I have anothe... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

Uh, could I have another look at that birth certificate?

Another? Has anyone seen it yet?

Ever notice that the Libera... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

Ever notice that the Liberals never want people to make their own choices?

have to confess that the idea, once you set aside all the Constitutional principles, of rounding up all those kids I see hanging out a couple of blocks from the local high schools and shuffling down the street in formerly nice neighborhoods and putting them to work doing all the stuff the illegal Mexicans are doing now has a nice ring to it. But........

Yeah ,and you think the thugs will become little angles?
They are already products of the highly effective Government run Public School System.
If they are really bad abples the been through the GOVERMENT SYSTEM many times.

They will rob, rape and steal once they have access to new pray the good kids with the loving parents.

(look at the praise heaped on the filth who raped a 12 yearold and kill 4 officers in Oakland)

These groups will most likely be run be Social Workers who will not believe in any type of discipline. The CHILDREN(upto age 25 according to CHIP) will not be responsible for their actions, it will be the fault of thier enviroment.

Those parents who complain will be labeled racist,(If your ethinc then your an OREO, Banana , Hostess Brownie you get something on the outside but a white racist on the inside) insensitive and will need to go to the camps to get their minds right.

The victims will have brought it on themselves.

When you send your kids to private schools you will be vilified with foul epithets like BANKER and held in disdain like an AIG FPS employee.

Also as good members of GIVE it will be the duty of children everywhere, to report unsafe conditions in the home, like having a gun, listening to talk radio recordings (Because the Fairness Indoctrination will be in affect).
Finally they will come to confiscate any subversive documents like the Constitution. As no onr except the Party leaders can read and comprehend it .

Then the Party Leaders can bestow that knowledge to us.

To ensure that end the new Political Officers ,I am sorry regulators will be place in every company of more than 25 people that is not unionized.

Roman Salute
Hail to Victory!
Hail to Victory!


This is something thats wor... (Below threshold)
914:

This is something thats worth repeating.. Can We see that birth certificate? He is our pesident right, so whats the problem? They can even have Dan Blather and Mary Mapes type one up I dont care.

That was supposed to be pre... (Below threshold)
914:

That was supposed to be pres i dent above...The mind knew it, the fingers refused to type it.

The House Giveth and Obama ... (Below threshold)
914:

The House Giveth and Obama taketh..

Mao's Cultural Revolution: ... (Below threshold)

Mao's Cultural Revolution: Coming soon to an American town near you.

We can expect this from our... (Below threshold)
Flu-Bird:

We can expect this from our imperial senate with all those imperial senators doing what they want to further erorde our freedoms and make this nation a socialists nation just like what the sinister UN wants




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