Thursday, April 05, 2007

To its illogical conclusion

by Rich Miles
April 5, 2007

NOTE: This piece was first published as a comment on a thread at on April 5, 2007. The thread consists mainly of David Swanson's Articles of Impeachment. It's worth a careful read, but it's also high-blood-pressure-inducing.

I may not be the first person to think of this, but try to imagine what will happen if - when - the above Articles of Impeachment or something like them are presented by the House to the Senate, and a trial begins, and Bush asserts that he has no constitutional requirement to take the matter seriously, respond to the charges, or even to leave office if convicted.

Such a declaration would be in keeping with his stated level of respect for the Constitution all through his presidency.

At that point, the only recourse would be to arrest him and Cheney, and probably a number of other WH operatives including Rove, in order to force them to take the impeachment seriously, and to prevent them circumventing the intent of the arrest.

And when the Senate issues a warrant of arrest, and there's no one who will carry it out because every imaginable law enforcement agency and agent has been compromised and co-opted, what do we do then?

The only thing to do would be to resort to the military for arrest. But in large part - no one knows HOW large - they've been turned to Bush's side as well. As examples, see Petraeus's recent partisan meetings with Republican operatives, Gates's history with secrecy, and on and on. Think Gen. Boykin and his "bigger God."

And even if a military arrest could be effected, there is ample evidence that Bush has created his own armed force in such organizations as Blackwater, who might (this seems to me more likely than not) attempt to defend him from arrest, or if they can't get there fast enough, to "spring" him from jail.

Imagine the international spectacle of a private army getting into a standoff, or perhaps even a shooting skirmish, with the U.S. Army, in defense of a convicted president, perhaps right on the White House lawn. Impossible? Not by half.

You see what Bush et al. have done to America? Not only does he ignore laws and assert the privileges of the "unitary executive", he's actually created a network of people in all branches, perhaps all departments, of government who will support him if Congress even tries to assert their constitutional prerogatives by passing laws to prevent him from anything he wants to do, or by trying to impeach him. He'll simply ignore them, as he has on so many other occasions. And America will then be faced with a set of choices that none of us want to make: either treat our president as an enemy of the people, or allow the destruction of our democracy to continue unabated.

As Glenn Greenwald said, quoted above and paraphrased now, the real problem here is that all of us - citizens, congressional leaders, ALL of us - have been operating on the assumption that "it can't happen here." But it CAN happen, and it IS happening.

I wrote a piece back in June of last year, called He's Not Leaving, in which I offered reasons why I think Bush is going to attempt to stay in office beyond January 2009. NOTHING that has happened since then has caused me to believe I was wrong in that forecast. In fact, if anything, events and actions by the administration since then, and the discovery of things that happened years ago but only recently came to light, have caused me to believe even MORE that this is what the Bush cabal intends - they're simply not going to allow elections to go forward, and are going at least to attempt to seize permanent power.

In that column, I surmised that "some combination of the Armed Forces and American patriots" would try to thwart this attempt - but even that no longer seems inevitable.

I think it was Nick Kristof who said, several years ago, that the trouble with covering this administration is that you have to be rude to get anything out of them.

I'd add to that: in order to tell everything there is to know about this administration, and to parse out what it means for America in both the long- and short-term, you have to sound like a conspiracy nut.

But the essence of this government's hold on power is that their lies, their power grabs, and their crimes are so bold, so audacious, so unbelievable that they are indeed not believed. The Big Lies are SO big that everyone who hears them simply rejects even the possibility that they could be true. And therein lies the danger for the American system of government: that we'll let it go on till it's too late.

There was a fella in Germany years ago who did this same sort
of thing. Perhaps you've heard of him. It was in all the papers.

1 comment:

Yellow Dog said...

Dead-on right, Rich. Nothing this maladministration has done for the past six years offers the slightest shred of evidence they have any intention of leaving office. Instead every single thing they have done piles proof upon proof that they will precipitate a crisis to justify martial law and a dictatorship to defend the homeland.

It's enough to make a gun-despising leftie start looking with more sympathy at the Second Amendment.