20 July 2007

The Tree of Liberty is Dying

When George W. Bush was installed as Occupant of the Oval Office in 2001, I began to have bad feelings about the state of the Republic. Beginning with Dick Cheney's "Energy Task Force" meetings and backing down from the Kyoto Protocol, the administration placed the health of business interests above that of the people. As I wrote, in the Rapid River Literary Magazine, at the time:

This is not at all surprising, considering that he views himself as Chief Executive Officer of the United States. I find that odd as well, since the ballot I used listed candidates for President of the United States of America, not CEO of USA, Inc.. This is also not surprising, when viewed alongside his other administration appointments and decisions. The Administration Energy policy was developed by the oil industry. Cabinet members whose sphere of influence is the environment have deep and long ties to the same sector of business.
The Administration's statement's concerning power shortages in the West spoke only of building more power plants, not of responsible energy use. I find it unconscionable and incredibly stupid that the withdrawal from the Kyoto Accord was made, "because it would be harmful to American business interests." Is the definition of America business or people? How can you Americans allow this man to baldfacedly lie?!
Yes, the agreement would be detrimental to business - BECAUSE BUSINESS CARES NOT A WHIT FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, OR CONTINUED LIFE ON EARTH, BUT ONLY ABOUT PROFIT!!!! Is the president (and I refuse to show respect by capitalizing the title) answerable to the People or not?
As far as I am concerned, this is an impeachable offense -a total disregard for the citizens of this country, and a complete kowtow to the gods of industry. Teddy Roosevelt must be spinning furiously in his grave (if you don't know what I'm referring to here, look up his anti-business stance in a history book). The Supreme Court elected president has insisted on denying a large (and growing) body of evidence concerning the effect that pollution is having on the world. The United States is the number one polluter of the environment on the entire planet, and his response is to build more power plants! What the Hell?!?!?
(I offer the above extended quote to show that I am not a "Johnny-come-lately" to the cause of impeachment)

Since that time, we have seen
  • tax cuts for the richest,
  • gross legislative overreactions to the al-Qaeda attacks of 11 Sept 2001, under the guise of the "Patriot Act",
  • a justified invasion of Afghanistan that morphed into an unjustified and immoral invasion of Iraq,
  • more tax cuts for the upper income brackets,
  • domestic spying (in the form of warrentless wiretaps),
  • extra-constitutional imprisonment of "enemy combatants" at Guantanamo,
  • federal subsidies to Big Oil - at a time when they were reaping record profits,
  • more tax cuts for the wealthy,
  • passing control of Medicaid drug coverage to Big Pharma,
  • a reprehensible lack of response to the inundation of New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Coast (except for the wealthy who have beach houses there) during and after Hurricane Katrina,
  • attempts to privatize Social Security,
  • and the annulment of habeas corpus.
  • oh, yeah, more tax cuts for those who needed them the least,
  • and many more....
Well, the hits on the America-that-used-to-be are coming fast and furious now.

In early May, the White House released the National Continuation Policy. On 3 July, the Current Occupant commuted the sentence of "Scooter" Libby, in an act that may well have been illegal - as Libby was convicted of perjuring himself in an effort to protect the Executive Branch, (putatively) headed by non other than the Current Occupant.

On Tuesday, the White House released "Executive Order: Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq", that allows the Executive Branch to " ’starve out’ a person by completely freezing their assets, without trial, without the need to present evidence, and without appeal."

And just yesterday, two more attacks on Freedom in America.

First, a letter from the Pentagon to Hillary Clinton was leaked, that claims she "reinforces enemy propaganda" by suggesting that the Pentagon start plans for withdrawal from Iraq. This letter is enough evidence for Senator Clinton's assets to be seized under the aforementioned Executive Order - as well as anyone who has supported her.

Next, the administration claimed that "that the Justice Department will never be allowed to pursue contempt charges initiated by Congress against White House officials once the president has invoked executive privilege."

This whole - totally unconstitutional - "Unitary Executive" business is totally out of control. Comparisons to fascism and
the Roman Empire are no longer exaggerated. If anything, they are not strong enough.

The Congress, and the Judicial Branch, must exert their constitutionally mandated powers of checks and balances and end these anti-democracy and un-American behaviors of the Bush malAdministration.

If the other two branches of "our" government don't rise to the occasion, it will be left to "we the people" to take matters into our own hands and put into practice what Thomas Jefferson said two centuries ago.

“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”

UPDATE: Cheney takes over - temporarily (yeah, right)....

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