Bob Unruh joined WND in 2006 after nearly three decades with the Associated Press, as well as several Upper Midwest newspapers, where he covered everything from legislative battles and sports to tornadoes and homicidal survivalists. He is also a photographer whose scenic work has been used commercially.More ↓Less ↑
Rangel, facing ethics charges in Congress, has proposed the Universal National Service Act that would require “all persons” from ages 18 to 42 “to perform national service, either as a member of the uniformed services or in civilian service in furtherance of the national defense and homeland security.”
The plan also authorizes “the induction of persons in the uniformed services during wartime to meet end-strength requirements of the uniformed services, and for other purposes.”
WND reported when a copy of Obama’s Colorado Springs speech posted online apparently was edited to exclude Obama’s specific references to the new force.
According to the copy of Rangel’s plan, which has been assigned to the Subcommittee on Military Personnel even though it lacks cosponsors, it specifies that “national service” means “military service or service in a civilian capacity that, as determined by the president, promotes national defense, including national or community service and service related to homeland security.”
“It is the obligation of every citizen of the United States, and every other person residing in the United States, who is between the ages 18 and 42 to perform a period of national service as prescribed in this title,” it specifies.
It would require that the president provide “for the induction” of people to the service corps.
“Except as otherwise provided in this section, the period of national service performed by a person under this title shall be two years,” Rangel wrote.
The exceptions provide that the term of service may be extended if the “member” needs to “compensate for any time lost to training for any cause” or “for the purpose of furnishing hospitalization, medical or surgical care for injury or illness incurred in the line of duty.”
It gives the president the far-reaching authority to “prescribe such regulations as are necessary to carry out this title,” including what types of “civilian service” are required, “standards of satisfactory performance,” “penalties for failure” and “such other matters as the president determines necessary to carry out this title.”
Conscientious objectors would be ordered “to perform national civilian service … as the president may prescribe.”
The group Operation Sit In said it is coordinating information to link up those who “have the time to go to D.C. at the drop of a hat to keep the Senate from passing the Universal National Service Act … with those who would like to go to stop it, but cannot afford to lose their jobs by taking off with no notice.”
National Director Larry Richardson said, “Most of those who have the time and freedom of time to go are out of work because of the current economy, and therefore are short on funds to go. So we match those who still have jobs with those who do not, and with everyone doing a little, no one has to do it all.
“We also are arranging for people who live fairly close to D.C., (within 50 or so miles), to let us park our cars on their property, at home or business, so we do not have to worry about them being towed while we are in D.C.,” he said.
“We need every PATRIOT to step up and help in this,” he said.
A spokesman for Rangel’s office, Emile Milne, told WND that nobody knows what such a plan would cost, but presumably those in full-time service to their country as civilians would have to be paid, how many people would be conscripted or other details.
“It would have to move through committee,” he said. “These questions … certainly would be addressed by the relevant committee.”
He said the discussion in Rangel’s office is that those in the civilian corps would work in “education, health care, they could work in our ports, various aspects of security.”
He also said the idea has been a long-term goal for Rangel.
WND reported earlier when Obama signed into law the “GIVE Act,” H.R. 1388, which massively expands the National Service Corporation and allocates to it billions of dollars.
Officials said at that time the law would allow for the “managing” of up to 8 or 9 million people.
That bill includes a “National Service Reserve Corps” whose members have completed a “term of national service,” “training” and “not less than 10 hours of volunteering each year.”
Joseph Farah, founder and editor of WND, used his daily column when the issue originally arose to alert Americans of the plans. He then elevated the issue with a call to all reporters to start asking questions.
“If we’re going to create some kind of national police force as big, powerful and well-funded as our combined U.S. military forces, isn’t this rather a big deal?” Farah wrote. “I thought Democrats generally believed the U.S. spent too much on the military. How is it possible their candidate is seeking to create some kind of massive but secret national police force that will be even bigger than the Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force put together?
“Is Obama serious about creating some kind of domestic security force bigger and more expensive than that? If not, why did he say it? What did he mean?” Farah wrote.
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