Wednesday, July 11, 2007


The gents and ladies at the National Review, those hardy he-men an women of the Hardly-Ever Right, tell me that I'm overly worried about The Constitutional Crisis presently taking place. That there really is no crisis, what with the President commuting Scooter Libby's sentence, admitting he did something wrong, but it wasn't worth 30 months in jail (though if I remember correctly, they were all quite willing to have Bill Clinton impeached and thrown out of office for lying about a blow job, an offense for which he was never even tried; they're just not quite as worried about someone who was convicted on 2 counts of perjury and 2 counts of obstructing justice who may be lying about the underlying crime of treason). Nor should I worry about the US Attorney scandal because I've been told by the Administration that they had nothing to do with it and that's why they are invoking Executive Privilege. Why, everyone can understand the logic there: We never spoke to these people; so you can't speak to them either. Or maybe it's that we did speak to them, but it had nothing to do with anything, so why would you want to,or....never mind.

On the barely legal side of the equation, we have the Fourth Circuit(?) Court of Appeals saying that you can't use the courts to find out if the Administration broke the Law against you; you have to know they broke the Law against you before you can bring any kind of criminal complaint against them. While I understand the Court's reasoning, I wonder how anyone is supposed to find out if the Administration broke the Law agaisnt them when the group charged with finding that out is the group that broke the Law in the first place (See FBI and Illegal Wiretapping and Justice Department)?

We have as well the Supreme Court saying that if you have loads and loads of money, you can pretty much say whatever you want in a political campaign, but if you're a high school student, don't make any bad jokes because we'll slap you down (if you're Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage and the ilk, you can call all your demands for the Deaths of other people bad jokes and the Hardly Ever Right will defend you forever against supposed censorship). And as to Clarence Thomas' concurrent opinion which argues that schools in fact have the obligation to instill a set of common values, it may behoove the individuals arguing that position, including Clarence Thomas, to remember that one of the common values we're supposed to instil is the First Amendment. A sign saying "Bong Hits for Jesus" is considerably less inflammatory than what "The Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" said about John Kerry during the last campaign, particularly since all of their allegations were outright lies.

But let us return to The National Review's arguement that The Cosntitution is not in fact in crisis; that this is just hyperbole. What we have is a Congress which just doesn't understand its place, they argue. Interesting assessment, but completely wrong. Congress comes first in The Constitution, not the President. The basic reason for the presidency is that it is easier to deal in foreign affairs with one individual than with 435. That is why the President can propose treaties, but those treaties need to be ratified by Congress (a position, I'm sure, The National Review and the Hardly-Ever Right find irksome). There is no, nor has there ever been, a Unitary President as the Hardly-Ever Right presently argues there is. What's more, their position is so shortsighted that were they to but look down the road a bit, they wouldn't want what they are demanding.

The Hardly-Ever Right's call for a strong, unitary executive is so myopic that it defies logic. Imagine if you will what happens when you have such a figure. The Hardly-Ever Right assumes that were a Democrat to be elected President, they would act with a greater sense of decorum and therefore there would be no problem as the Hardly-Ever Right would simply be the Bully they are and shout him or her down. The Hardly-Ever Right believes in ponies. But back to the topic at hand; if we imagine a smaller government limited only to military and policing and a Unitary President, what remains for that President to do? You need only look at what George W. Bush has done to see what you can expect more of, because let's face it, the next guy (or gal) just can't be as incompetent as this one.


Thursday, July 05, 2007


Yesterday was the Fourth of July: Independence Day! And for I Lewis "Scooter" Libby, it was a great day. For the rest of us, not so much.

If you happen to value your independence and freedom, this week may have seen the strongest statement by this Administration and its enablers that your freedom and independence are not considered worth one wit. George Bush, George the Third (an honorific which I gave him when I thought it was just a joke), made it plain that he really doesn't care much about the Law or The Constitution. It's quite simple really: The Law found Libby guilty, a jury of his peers. The judge sentenced Libby according to the guidelines set down by the Justice Department. And George the Third looked at the sentence, agreed the Law had indeed been broken, and said that that didn't matter, because he, George the Third, thought the sentence too harsh. So he gave Libby a free pass. George W. Bush basically said that the Law is what he says it is! That he is the final arbiter of what is and is not legal. George Bush has declared himself King. Or more accurately, Dictator.

Others have written far more eloquently about this than I have. Read Glenn Greenwald, read Atrios, read Digby, read anyone but the idiotic hypocrites over on the Right. Not only are they hypocrites, arguing that Libby did nothing wrong except what Bill Clinton did (except Bill Clinton was never brought to trial nor convicted), they do not realize just how effectively they have damaged the rule of Law. Because, let's be honest here, Libby was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice in a treason case. If Libby would have come clean, the people Fitzgerald would have prosecuted would have been prosecuted for acts of treason against the US Government and the American people. The Administration and its enablers have commited treason, and they don't even realize the door they have opened!

It is self-evident that George Bush believes he is above the Law. It is self-evident that Dick Cheney believes that he is above the Law. It is self-evident that the enablers of this Administration, the MSM, the Republican Leadership, the Religious Right Leaders believe that they are above the Law. Are we, the American People, ready for the slippery slope that this president has placed us upon? If we do not act to curtail this power-grab, what will we do when the next president decides that he can more flagrantly ignore the Law? Are we ready to abdicate our rights to the government? The reason we have the government we do is so that no one group or person could become a tyrant. The Repiublican Leadership and its enablers chose to install a tyrant. Are they ready for when that tyrant turns on them?

We have but few means of recourse. Congress must do its duty. Impeach him! Impeach Cheney! Throw the whole criminal cabal in jail before it's too late! Do it now while we still can.

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