Conservatives and Bush supporters in particular seem to start their day not with toast and coffee or any other normal routine, but rather work up a mouth full of bile and look around to see who they will accuse of treason that day. Nothing new in the sociopolitical minset of the far right, Joseph McCarthy once said of the 20th century’s greatest president Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s term as “twenty years of treason”. As most people that have made it at least half way through high school know we have three branches of government. According to his oath of office the president is bound by the constitution to adhere to laws passed by Congress. The only option the president has is to veto laws he does not like thus forcing Congress to try and override his veto. Once a law has been passed the president has no choice under our current system of government other then enforce the law or appeal to the Supreme Court in the event that he finds the law unconstitutional. Circumventing this process in any way is a very fundamental and treacherous undermining of our system of government. I didn’t miss this story the first time around, but in light of yet another episode in the grandiose exercise of power where Congress was not allowed full oversight of an intelligence program ( Bank Data Is Sifted by U.S. in Secret to Block Terror) it may be a good time to revisit this attack on the foundations of this democratic republic, The Biggest Legal Story You’ve Probably Missed
One of the most under-reported and misunderstood legal stories of our time is the story of the White House’s use of “signing statements” to try to undercut the effect of the legislation the President is triggering into law (but which he doesn’t necessarily agree with). The strategy and tactic is particularly disturbing because it comes from an Administration that has made expanded executive-branch power (and concomittantly blatant disrespect for the other two branches of government) a cornerstone of its philosophy of governance.
The signing statements gambit is rather clever. On the surface it sounds like for example in the case of anti-torture legislation that Bush is outlawing torture( which was already against the law, but that is another story), but his signing statement says he can torture if he feels he needs to. Yet the courts do not get to review the whole process because conservatives in Congress have and will continue to look for what is best for the public face of the republican party rather then uphold the principles on which our system of government rests. How this is not treason by the president aided and abetted by one party rule. The thinking or lack of same requires the kind of ideological pretzel twisting that we have all come to expect from conservatives not since Bush came to office, but since the days of McCarthy.
That darn liberal press is at it again, misquoting Rep.John Murtha (D-PA), Murtha claims he was misquoted
‘That was in reference to international polls. It was not so much his own conjecture, but a conclusion drawn from polls in various countries.’
“So this alleged and most controversial statement written by Baier appears to have taken his comments out of context.”
What Murtha should have said was that Bush and conservatives policies are as big a threat to world to world peace as Al-Quida. That would have been both true and accurate. Just think if Bush and his supporters continue to do as well fighting terrorism as they’ve done in getting us bogged down in Iraq and responding to natural disasters, we’re screwed.
Back to treason and those that have formed a kind of rabid lynch mob, who are as usual projecting. The entirety of the the conservative fringe case against the new York and L.A. Times rests on one thing, one argument, the infallibility and monarch like powers of an alcoholic who thinks he hears God’s voice telling him what to do. There may be treason in the air, but it is not coming from the press, Bank Shot
But, you know, this raises the same type of questions. Most importantly, the absence of congressional authorization. You know, the president is allowed to enforce the laws, he‘s not allowed to make them. He requires authorization from Congress. This is a constant theme.
And when Secretary Snow says the American people expect us to do things like that, unfortunately, it‘s true that every single week we have a new massive databank or a new, you know, surveillance program being revealed that has
Again, do not hold your breath waiting for conservatives to actually grapple with the issue at hand. Is the bank surveillance program legal, especially regards international banking transactions? It probably is. The issue is that the president of this democracy just can’t run whatever little secret programs he dreams up on any given day without congressional oversight. Power like that corrupts and it is being used by characters that most of us know are corrupt, Bank-tapping: What’s the big deal?
Repeatedly since 9/11 a barrage of Bush administration press releases, speeches and congressional testimony heralded its aggressive works to target terrorist finances around the world. In a June 2002 speech to the Council on Foreign Relations, Deputy Treasury Secretary Kenneth W. Dam boasted that the United States was working with private-sector partners internationally on “developing monitoring systems” of bank accounts, noting that such cooperation was necessary because “you can’t bomb a foreign bank account.”
But then, I do not take these complaints against the news media at face value. Instead, this is yet another round in a long-running campaign by the Bush administration to portray the news media as unpatriotic and therefore unworthy of public consumption.
In between practicing their noose making techniques in Mom’s basement that is really what the current shrill right-wing chorus is all about, that they have full and utter control of how reality is crafted. It is OK for Bush to leak. It is not OK for the press to report the administration’s abuse of power. It is OK for the administration to contradict itself every five minutes, it is not OK for the press to report that they do. It is far past time that conservatives or more aptly the blind nationalists to learn something about good old citizenship, about patriotism. For the right-wing nationalists to stop gnawing at the foundations of our government and our free press and take a long hard look inside. Is time for them to stop back peddling the most bizarre rationales for every attack they and their president make on our system of government and the institutions that make us unique in the world. Everyday there is some new foaming at the mouth attack on what is good and idealistic about America and new ways to weaken us as a culture of laws and justice. It is as though they have managed to spend all there lives in a haze, they don’t see the constitution and an informed populace as strengths, but as a weakness that can only be overcome with authority. Cold hard unthinking unjust authority is the right-wing nationalists answer to every question, every challenge that faces America. If America has a rot eating away at its core values, just look to your right and you’ll find it. How Would a Patriot Act?
Why is the Deliverator so equipped? Because people rely on him. He is a
role model. This is America. People do whatever the fuck they feel like
doing, you got a problem with that? Because they have a right to. And
because they have guns and no one can fucking stop them. As a result, this
country has one of the worst economies in the world. When it gets down to it
– talking trade balances here – once we’ve brain-drained all our technology
into other countries, once things have evened out, they’re making cars in
Bolivia and microwave ovens in Tadzhikistan and selling them here – once our
edge in natural resources has been made irrelevant by giant Hong Kong ships
and dirigibles that can ship North Dakota all the way to New Zealand for a
nickel – once the Invisible Hand has taken all those historical inequities
and smeared them out into a broad global layer of what a Pakistani
brickmaker would consider to be prosperity – y’know what? There’s only four
things we do better than anyone else
high-speed pizza delivery
excerpt from Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson