the Insurgency…

Posted on Friday 30 January 2009

I aver that I, 1boringoldman, have absolute immunity from understanding the Law. In college, I had passing thoughts of going to Law School. My roommate, a Law student, helped me with that. He said, "You think the being a Lawyer is about right and wrong?"

emptywheel [FDL] and Matt Cooper [TPM] are having a field day with the legal issues involved in the question of whether Congress can insist that Karl Rove, Harriet Miers, and Josh Bolten can be compelled to testify in Congress about the U.S. Attorney "matter" or the case involving the Governor of Alabama’s corruption conviction. Both cases involve allegations that they we’re hatchet jobs by Karl Rove while he was in the White House.

George W. Bush is now claiming Absolute Immunity for his former advisors in this letter from his Counsel [four days before he leaves office]. Everyone says that Obama has to get involved in deciding this thing. I think that’s a trap myself, and Obama doesn’t usually step in traps, so I expect he will defer to the Department of Justice and the new Attorney General.

Were Karl Rove, Harriet Miers, and Josh Bolten completely in the dark and uninvolved in these cases, I expect that Bush and Cheney would still have fought this fight – being as invested in the Imperial Presidency as they were. But, I doubt that they would’ve gone to these lengths. None of us think they were uninvolved in these cases. So this power struggle is a smoke screen to cover that involvement. It’s very likely that this is a specific obstruction of Justice by exerting a creative new concept, Absolute Immunity.

If any small piece of these allegations is true, this is a bigger abuse of power than Watergate. Breaking into a political rival’s Campaign Office is bad. Trying to disenfranchise voters using the Department of Justice is worse. Throwing a sitting Governor into Prison on false charges isn’t a lightweight power-play either. Appointing a Special Prosecutor with broad powers seems like the way to go to me. Again, though I know next to nothing about the Law, it seems like the Justice Department is the place to work this out – not the Congress. I don’t fault the Congress for getting involved. In the eight years of Bush’s reign, Congress was the only functioning part of our government, and it only functioned for the last two years, after the 2006 elections.

And as for Mr. Bush exerting power that persists beyond his term of office. That’s absurd – simply absurd. The only reason for having such a power would be to hide the workings of government from the governed. Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney went on a legacy tour, and both of them repeatedly told us that they would be exonerated by history. In spite of this assertion, they’ve done everything in their power to keep us from even knowing what that history was. They can’t have it both ways.

Their most effective smoke screen was to hand over a country in extreme peril – on the verge of bankruptcy, involved in two "unwinnable" wars, with a Minority Party [that has a strong Media arm]  acting like "insurgents," and with a Supreme Court stacked with cronies. But sooner or later, their conduct is going to be looked at.

I think the Republicans learned something from the Iraq War. Remember, we invaded Iraq and thought we’d be welcomed with open arms. We threw out the Baathists, dissembled their Army, and settled in to be liberators. Bush ignored the growing insurgency until it was entrenched and a cancer on the whole enterprise.

Well Obama won, and now there’s an Insurgency. The Republicans in Congress are voting as a bloc. The former President is claiming Priviledge in perpetuity. And their Media is responding with a frenzy of activity. What else would you call such coordinated behavior? So the question on the table for our new Administration is do we continue to "make nice" like Obama would like to do, or do we engage the "Insurgency" before it gets out of hand?

I hope that Obama and the new Administration can learn from Bush’s mistakes too. It’s time to bring in the troops early rather than wait years for a "Surge."
    January 30, 2009 | 9:41 AM

    I ‘d like to see President Obama change the directive about no pictures or film showing soldiers draped coffins coming off planes from our 2 wars. It’s about time our country see the true costs of these wars.

    January 30, 2009 | 9:54 AM

    Take a look at by reporter Dahr Jamail “A Capped Volcano of Suffering” I like to see someone like Warren Buffet try to help the Iraqis to get electricity and running water for a start.

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