Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Authoritarians at the Gate (updated below)
Today in the news, three items appear that will go virtually unnoticed by most people. Yet these items, and particularly the scant attention any of them will receive by either the public at large or the mainstream media institutions charged with informing them will discuss things like CNN's "top story" about a "tiny terrier saving kids from pit bulls." Here they are...
(1) The Wall Street Journal Editorial Page...
... features an editorial authored by Harvey Mansfield, a William R. Kenan Professor of Government at Harvard (you know that great liberal institution) entitled "The Case for the Strong Executive
Under some circumstances, the rule of law must yield to the need for energy."
- "In other circumstances I could see myself defending the rule of law.
- In our time, however, an opinion has sprung up in liberal circles particularly that civil liberties must always be kept intact regardless of circumstances. This opinion assumes that civil liberties have the status of natural liberties, and are inalienable.
- Now the rule of law has two defects, each of which suggests the need for one-man rule. The first is that law is always imperfect by being universal, thus an average solution even in the best case, that is inferior to the living intelligence of a wise man on the spot, who can judge particular circumstances...
(2) Thomas Sowell's Random Comment that...
- "when I see the worsening degeneracy in our politicians, our media, our educators, and our intelligentsia, I can't help wondering if the day may yet come when the only thing that can save this country is a military coup." Enough said, right?
(3) This New York Times Headline stating "Administration Pulls Back on Surveillance Agreement"
The first paragraph reads, "Senior Bush administration officials told Congress on Tuesday that they could not pledge that the administration would continue to seek warrants from a secret court for a domestic wiretapping program, as it agreed to do in January. Rather, they argued that the president had the constitutional authority to decide for himself whether to conduct surveillance without warrants."
Apparently, the Fourth Amendment requirement that "no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized" really means that "when the president does it, it's not illegal."
Lincoln's quote, from the Gettysburg address, about our country being "a nation of laws and not of men" no longer applies.
UPDATE: No, this isn't from the Onion. This is a quote from the President of the United States, you know "the commander guy."
From the White House website transcript of Bush's statement on the War on Terror this morning...
"By the way, in the report it said, it is -- the government may have to put in more troops to be able to get to that position. And that's what we do. We put in more troops to get to a position where we can be in some other place. The question is, who ought to make that decision? The Congress or the commanders? And as you know, my position is clear -- I'm the commander guy."