Tuesday, August 14, 2007


I try not to get into politics too much on my blog but here goes again. I watched Bill Moyers Journal Sunday which was a rebroadcast of a July 13th program. His two guests are advocating the impeachment of both Cheney and Bush. The Bush supporters are of course dismissing it as so much left wing media bias but apparently they didn't watch very closely. The guest who argued most passionately for impeachment and even contended that Bush & Cheney's abuses were worse than Nixon's, was Bruce Fein a conservative who wrote the 1st article of impeachment against Bill Clinton. So much for left wing media bias.

Both guests argued for impeachment of both Cheney & Bush not on partisan grounds but on Constitutional grounds. They believe that the expansion of presidential power claimed by Bush & Cheney represents a long term threat to the balance of powers set up in the Constitution and thus to our democracy. For those who might not have seen the program there is a full transcript available at http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/07132007/transcript4.html. Both guests are Constitutional scholars whose credentials I respect. It is (IMHO) well worth reading the full transcript.

Unfortunately our Congress seems to have no stomach for protecting the Constitution or their own powers under the Constitution. They have taken impeachment "off the table" and most recently legalized one of the illegal acts of this administration by passing a bill that allows domestic spying by the administration without congressional or court oversight. I don't know if that bill also grandfathered in the illegal spying that the administration has been engaged in since 2003 which is now common knowledge. Perhaps congress's solution will simply be to pass bills that make all the abuses of this administration legal. If so we will have reached the point Ben Franklin referred to in his final address to the Constitutional Convention:
"I agree to this Constitution with all its faults, if they are such; because I think a general Government necessary for us, and there is no form of Government but what may be a blessing to the people if well administered, and believe farther that this is likely to be well administered for a course of years, and can only end in Despotism, as other forms have done before it, when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic Government, being incapable of any other."

One observation by Bill Moyers was that the average citizen seems to be ahead of congress on impeachment. If you are interested in pursuing impeachment on your own it seems that there is a provision for the average citizen to do just that. Go to http://impeachforpeace.org/index.php for an explanation of how and the forms necessary to initiate a citizen impeachment initiative. My own hope is that we have not reached the point that Ben feared.

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