Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Power-Madness of King George - Is Bush turning America into an elective dictatorship? By Jacob�Weisberg

Jacob Weisberg has a great piece in Slate Magazine on the un-American power grab by the Bush Administration. Here's a illustrative quote:

The Power-Madness of King George - Is Bush turning America into an elective dictatorship? By Jacob�Weisberg: "This extremity of Bush's position emerges most clearly in a 42-page document issued by the Department of Justice last week. As Andrew Cohen, a CBS legal analyst, wrote in an online commentary, 'The first time you read the 'White Paper,' you feel like it is describing a foreign country guided by an unfamiliar constitution.' To develop this observation a bit further, the nation implied by the document would be an elective dictatorship, governed not by three counterpoised branches of government but by a secretive, possibly benign, awesomely powerful king. "


A careful reader said...

I'm not sure what "counterpoised" means, but I seem to remember from history classes that the three branches are co-equal. They also have different roles. Congress isn't the commander in chief. Would anyone suggest that Congress should evaluate the battle tactics on the ground in a war? Of course not -- it's not only not their job but unwieldy. Why should then anyone suggest Congress should evaluate the intelligence tactics in a war? And as many others have pointed out, if this program is so wrong, why doesn't Congress just stop funding it (since it has the power of the purse)? Of course the answer is that the protests agains the NSA program aren't substantive but merely designed to score political points. Looking at the polls, though, it's only scoring points with the hard core left, not mainstream citizens. Fortunately for the country, you still need 50% + 1 to get elected.

Brown Cowgirl said...

I'm far more worried about the Enabling Act being a presidential directive than I am the "smoking gun being a mushroom cloud."

No one is trying to usurp the role of the executive. FISA has been amended to give the President all the leeway he needs (and then some)to undertake intelligence operations. Bush even said, "When we’re talking about chasing down terrorists, we’re talking about getting a court order before we do so."

Nixon said, "When the president does it, that means it is not illegal." Is this the thinking now?