Autumn Maple – Indiana

 Autumn Maple – Indiana

YOUNG George Willard got out of bed at four in the morning. It was April and the young tree leaves were just coming out of their buds. The trees along the residence streets in Winesburg are maple and the seeds are winged. When the wind blows they whirl crazily about, filling the air and making a carpet underfoot.
George came downstairs into the hotel office carrying a brown leather bag. His trunk was packed for departure. Since two o’clock he had been awake thinking of the journey he was about to take and wondering what he would find at the end of his journey.

from Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson

It is my belief that there are ‘absolutes’ in our Bill of Rights, and that they were put there on purpose by men who knew what the words meant and meant their prohibitions to be ‘absolutes

In the little world they live in the rabid Right thinks they’re normal and there’s something wrong with normal people. Actor and former Senator Fred Thompson who I previously said was running for president isn’t officially running, but on the other hand if it quacks like a duck it probably is. None of the GOP candidate seem to running as themselves: Rudy Giuliani and John McCain are running as recycled versions of Bush, Mitt Romney is running as a pair of flip-flops, Sam Brownback is running as Jerry Falwell and Thompson is running as either Dick Cheney or the survivor of a space alien kidnapping. How else could one explain Thompson’s depraved behavior, Thompson Links Reid To 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists, Claims He Is ‘Encouraging Our Enemies’

Reid “made his statement about General Pace on a conference call with fringe elements of the blogosphere who think we’re the bad guys,” Thompson says. “Whether he means to or not, he’s encouraging our enemies to believe that they are winning the critical war of will.”

Thompson also compares 9/11 conspiracy theories to claims that the war in Iraq was a “sinister Republican plot.” He says, “Reid has led the attack on the administration, with Nancy Pelosi, charging it lied and tricked America into supporting the war.” Thompson claims that “multiple hearings and investigations into pre-war intelligence findings” have “debunked this paranoid myth.”

I can’t find a single statement by the distinguished Democratic Senator Reid of Nevada in which he endorses any kind of 9-11 conspiracy theory. So that aspect of Thompson’s accusation tells us more about Fred’s mental stability then it does about Senator Reid. As ThinkProgress points out the administration manipulated and distorted intelligence about Iraq. Pentagon IG: White House Refused To Cooperate With Investigation Into Manipulated Iraq Intel

The Bushies propaganda campaign in conjunction to sending the nation into an unnecessary and preemptive war is a serious matter and one of the lowest moral points in our nation’s history. Everyone but the fringe Right knows that Bush administration officials ran a disinformation campaign that rivals the most unscrupulous authoritarian regimes of the last century, Democrats Tally ‘Misleading’ Iraq Statements

“Prior to the war in Iraq, the president and his advisors repeatedly claimed that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction that jeopardized the security of the United States. The failure to discover these weapons after the war has led to questions about whether the president and his advisors were candid in describing Iraq’s threat,” the report said.

Most of the statements were misleading because they expressed certainty where none existed or failed to acknowledge the doubts of intelligence officials, according to the report. Ten statements were false, it said.

“Most of the misleading statements about Iraq – 161 statements – were made prior to the start of the war in Iraq. But 76 misleading statements were made by the five administration officials after the start of the war to justify the decision to go to war,” the report said.

Contrary to Lazy Fred’s assertions Senator Reid is trying to disentangle the country from a disastrous and ultimately unproductive debacle that George and Dick manipulated the country into. That’s called patriotism. Thompson seems to have failed the first test of a presidential candidate, love of country and respect for the American people. On the Right those are considered stellar qualities, lying for the cause – the Conservative Movement has taken precedent over what is best for America for almost half a century but normal Americans tend to frown on being used and abused by over the top right-wing propaganda.

Bob Geiger has more on Lazy Fred and his view of netroots bloggers, Here’s How Fringe I Am, Fred Thompson

GAO Identifies White House Failures to Follow Congressional Mandates

Yesterday, the Government Accountability Office released a report finding that, in addition to the Bush Administration’s unprecedented use of signing statements claiming unilateral authority to disregard provisions of congressional Acts (discussed in depth by Professor Neil Kinkopf of the Georgia State University College of Law in his ACS Issue Brief, “Signing Statements and the President’s Authority to Refuse to Enforce the Law”), the Administration has also followed through on such statements by refusing to execute nearly one-third of congressional mandates among those selected for study.

Whenever you hear a Republican talk about law and order you’re just listening to hollow meaningless rhetoric. It is a Potemkin puppet show where you see Bush sign the law, but in reality never obeys the law. When President Harry Truman tried to seize U.S. steel mills in a time of war, the steel mills brought suit, In YOUNGSTOWN CO. v. SAWYER, 343 U.S. 579 (1952)

(c) Authority of the President to issue such an order in the circumstances of this case cannot be implied from the aggregate of his powers under Article II of the Constitution. Pp. 587-589.

(d) The Order cannot properly be sustained as an exercise of the President’s military power as commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. P. 587.

(e) Nor can the Order be sustained because of the several provisions of Article II which grant executive power to the President. Pp. 587-589.

(f) The power here sought to be exercised is the lawmaking power, which the Constitution vests in the Congress alone, in both good and bad times. Pp. 587-589.

(g) Even if it be true that other Presidents have taken possession of private business enterprises without congressional authority in order to settle labor disputes, Congress has not thereby lost its exclusive constitutional authority to make the laws necessary and proper to carry out all powers vested by the Constitution “in the Government of the United States, or any Department or Officer thereof.” Pp. 588-589.

Mr. Justice Black delivered the opinion of the Court and wrote.

We are asked to decide whether the President was acting within his constitutional power when he issued an order directing the Secretary of Commerce to take possession of and operate most of the Nation’s steel mills. The mill owners argue that the President’s order amounts to lawmaking, a legislative function which the Constitution has expressly confided to the Congress and not to the President.

[ ]…Nor can the seizure order be sustained because of the several constitutional provisions that grant executive power to the President. In the framework of our Constitution, the President’s power to see that the laws are faithfully executed refutes the idea that he is to be a lawmaker. The Constitution limits his functions in the lawmaking process to the recommending of laws he thinks wise and the vetoing of laws he thinks bad. And the Constitution is neither silent nor equivocal about who shall make laws which the President is to execute. The [343 U.S. 579, 588] first section of the first article says that “All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States . . . .”

The only course left for Congress is impeachment. Bush and some far Right radicals like John Yoo have asserted that Bush has king like powers when clearly that was not the founding fathers intentions or the court’s interpretation even in times of actual wars like the Korean conflict. The Bush administration will simply continue to assert they have powers that exceed those under the Constitution until Congress asserts its rightful legal authority. U.S. Steel actually acted against the Truman administration when Congress failed to act. As the courts noted had Steel not acted a legal precedent would have been set. It is incumbent upon our elected representatives to act even when it may not be popular or easy to do so. In regards to Bush’s signing statements there is no private entity that can step in, Congress is the only entity that force Bush to respect his Constitutional mandate to uphold laws passed by Congress.

“It is my belief that there are ‘absolutes’ in our Bill of Rights, and that they were put there on purpose by men who knew what the words meant and meant their prohibitions to be ‘absolutes.’ ” Justice Hugo L. Black