Jul 182004

Bush Not a Bright MBA Student — Duhhh. According to former professor at the Harvard Business School, George W. Bush stood out only because of his extreme mediocrity.

Censure the President — Based primarily on the fact that the President did not comply with the bill passed by Congress authorizing the war with Iraq, I have to concur with the call by Moveon.org for Congress to take more decisive action against the president.

In an attempt to escape responsibility for the misleading statements that led the nation to war, President Bush has announced plans to form an independent inquiry to look into what went wrong. An inquiry would serve the Bush administration well: it would envelop the issue in a fog of uncertainty, deflect blame onto the intelligence services, and push any political damage into 2005, after the upcoming election.

But the facts need no clarification. Despite repeated warnings from the CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency, President Bush and his administration hyped and distorted the threat that Iraq posed. And now that reality is setting in, the President seeks to pin the blame on someone else. We can’t let him.

Congress has the power to censure the President — to formally reprimand him for his betrayal of the nation’s trust. If ever there was a time to use this function, it is now. Join the call for Congress to censure President Bush now [click here].

Our Founders and The Unbalance of Power — This is from a speech delivered recently by Al Gore at the "American Constitution Society for Law And Policy."

It truly is an extraordinary blessing to live in a nation so carefully designed to protect individual liberty and safeguard self- governance and free communication. But if George Washington could see the current state of his generation’s handiwork and assess the quality of our generation’s stewardship now, at the beginning of this 21st century, what do you suppose he would think about the proposition that our current president claims the unilateral right to arrest and imprison American citizens indefinitely, without giving them the right to see a lawyer or inform their families of their whereabouts, and without the necessity of even charging them with any crime?

All that is necessary, according to our president, is that he, the president, label any citizen an unlawful enemy combatant and that will be sufficient to justify taking away that citizen’s liberty without due process, even for the rest of his life if the president so chooses. There’s no appeal.

What would Thomas Jefferson think of the curious and discredited argument from our current Justice Department that the president may authorize what plainly amounts to the torture or prisoners, and that any law or treaty which attempts to constrain his treatment of prisoners in time of war would itself be a violation of the Constitution our founders put together?

What would Benjamin Franklin think of President Bush’s assertion that he has the inherent power, even without a declaration of war by the Congress, to launch an invasion of any nation on Earth at any time he chooses for any reason he wishes, even if that nation poses no imminent threat to the United States?

How long would it take James Madison to dispose of our current president’s recent claim in Department of Justice legal opinions that he is no longer subject to the rule of law, so long as he is acting in his role as commander in chief?

I think that it is safe to say that our founders would be genuinely concerned about these recent developments in American democracy, and that they would feel that we, here, now, are facing a clear and present danger with the potential to threaten the future of the American experiment. Shouldn’t we be equally concerned, and shouldn’t we ask ourselves how it is that we have come to this point? [Read the complete transcript]

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