|May 25, 2006|
It Was All Over Before the Shouting Started (Too Little, Too Late)
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
The FBI search of Congressman Jefferson’s Congressional office has produced a “sound and fury” in Congress that the illegal wiretapping of the entire population of the United States did not.
What gave these senators and congressmen the idea they were immune from the long reach of the autocratic Bush’s arm? They sat silently by while the Supreme Court took extraordinary actions to give Bush the presidency. They sat silent when he fed them easily verified information of WMDs in Iraq. They quietly handed over the keys to the country by allowing him to take charge in a way unprecedented in our history.
The Republican majority in our Legislative Branch, assisted by some of the Democratic minority, facilitated this power grab by ignoring the warning signs of an Executive Branch of our government that was out of control. Checks and balances flew out the window along with Congressional oversight. Congress even allowed their legislation to be tampered with. There were threats and open hostility whenever Congress did not do the Executive’s bidding. If those methods didn’t work; “signing statements” were attached that simply said Bush did not recognized the authority of Congress and would not obey the law. (Sort of like you telling the policeman that stops you for speeding that you know there is a speed limit but you feel it doesn’t apply to you and therefore don’t plan to obey it.)
How could Congress possibly be surprised that the FBI simply took the next step and searched a Congressman’s office? Bush, and his administration appointees, have been telling us they are above the law for several years now. Why would Congress believe their Congressional Power wouldn’t be a target? Congressional Power, or more correctly, Congressional Power that the Constitution gave to oversee the Executive branch of government has been the target since the 2000 election.
Absolutely nothing was done by Congress, or the Judiciary (Gonzales), when political dissidents were herded into “free speech zones” that were off the streets and out of sight. Nothing was done to find the “leaker” who had committed treason by releasing the name of a covert CIA agent and blowing her “business cover” at the same time and thus exposing her operation and her colleagues to our enemies. Nor were those revealing photos that uncovered unprecedented actions of torturing prisoners, “rendition” of those POWs to other countries more versed in torture activities, seem to really bother Congress. They were busy holding “investigations” to clear oil companies of price fixing charges, and DeLay of ethics violations.
And now Congress is contemplating legislation to pursue whistleblowers; and punish news organizations and reporters for having the audacity to believe in the Right of a free press to report unlawful secret government activity; all at the order of the Executive Branch.
Congress has simply “put themselves out of business” by abdicating their position of authority and oversight under Article I and II of the Constitution and by providing the Executive Branch with unlimited power to pick and choose which laws to implement, which laws to follow, which laws to disobey.
Without the Legislative Branch overseeing and checking the power of the Executive branch; democracy has already died. The only problem left to “solve” is to pick a title; Monarch? Emperor? Dictator? Whichever the Executive Branch settles on; it is what our Founding Father’s warned us about and tried to prevent. Their concept did not fail; Congress failed in their duty to check executive power. All this screaming over a searched office is simply too little, too late. Much too late.
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
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