End of America by Naomi Wolf

My sister-in-law's dad is not your typical retired high school football coach - loves Trader Joe's, listens religiously to Air America, watches the Daily Show and Colbert Report and reads all the hippie lefty books out there. We have a lot in common regarding politics, so he lent me "The End of America: A Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot" by Naomi Wolf. It's a good one. I just finished the prefeace and intro and I'm already freaked out. It's about the ten steps that occur when a nation goes from a democracy to a dictatorship and how we're getting there in a very slow but deliberate way.

So far, I'm most freaked out by the Military Commission Act of 2006. Under this act, the president has the authority to designate anybody - including US citizens - as enemy combatants. Once delcared as such, the "enemy combatant" faces a justice system that "lacks the basic protections afforded defendents in our domestic system of laws, in our military justice system, or in the system of laws used to try war criminals..." and "are forbidden from invoking the Geneva Conventions" (page 16). The president can define anyone he/she wants as an enemy combatant without direct evidence presented to a court.