I have never been so afraid for the future of this country as I am in these times. In other dark times, I could cling to the knowledge that where there was wrongdoing, it would eventually be exposed. Where there were crimes committed, they would eventually be prosecuted. And where there were crooks and liars, elections would oust them in favor of a new breed, possibly less malevolent.
But in the Bush/Cheney era of operating in the dark outside of the boundaries of checks and balances, all bets are off. Our justice system has been subverted; the majority in Congress cowed and whipped into submission by the most power-hungry war machine to ever inhabit the White House and we’ve let it happen by not standing up and forcing these evildoers to be held accountable. So confident are they of their success that they daily walk into the spotlight and tell lies easily refuted but nonetheless allowed to stand, they raise their sabers and rattle them with no thought given to the price already paid for their folly, and I suspect that history will show that both of them used the last 8 years in public office to profit themselves and pillage our country in ways we haven’t even imagined yet.
Yet there is no credible movement for impeachment moving through the Congressional majority despite the rising call from a widely diverse group of voices. Why? Impeachment must be put back on the table and it must be a serious effort, beginning with Dick Cheney. The cost of not impeaching will be expansion of our military aggression into Iran (a Dick Cheney pet project), many more lives lost in Iraq, complete subversion of the courts and justice system, and a body politic so ravaged by the dishonest raping of our 230-year old Constitution that apathy replaces anger which is a very dangerous place to be.
Which of us wants to explain to these children what freedoms their mother gave her life to preserve? The freedom to profit from overseas oil? The freedom to profit from the war machine itself? Or the freedom to stand up and tell this president that we will not sacrifice any more of our young men and women to a flawed and paranoid ideology which has separated completely from reality?
…now people are dying because of this administration. That’s the truth. And they won’t change course. They are ignoring the Congress. They keep signing these signing statements which mean that he’s decided not to enforce the law. This is as close as we’ve ever come to a dictatorship. When you have a situation where Congress is stepped on, that means the American people are stepped on. So I don’t think you can take anything off the table. Because in fact the Constitution doesn’t permit us to take these things off the table.
Cheney is deadly serious about pushing ahead with aggression against Iran, and his argument for why we must is so strikingly similar to the arguments for engaging Iraq that they cannot go unanswered.
From the mouth of George Bush himself, some recent lies about Iraq:
Actually, I was hoping to solve the Iraqi issue diplomatically. That’s why I went to the United Nations and worked with the United Nations Security Council, which unanimously passed a resolution that said disclose, disarm or face serious consequences. That was the message, the clear message to Saddam Hussein. He chose the course.
The truth: Iraq claimed over and over that they were not developing weapons of mass destruction. They cooperated with the UN Weapons Inspectors, who did not find evidence of weapons of mass destruction. Colin Powell, whose words to the UN probably did more to sell the American public on the war in Iraq has publicly denounced that UN speech as being based upon flawed intelligence, innuendo and exaggeration, has said more than once in public that he regrets ever going to the UN without doing an independent fact-check first.
And on July 10th, this statement of policy was released by the Bush administration, which essentially threatened to veto any bill sent up by Congress which limited the executive powers on Iraq. In addition, there was a small paragraph dealing with Iran:
The Administration strongly opposes amendments to the bill that to restrict the ability of the United States to deal effectively with the threats to regional security posed by the conduct of Iran, including Iran’s efforts to develop nuclear weapons. The Administration also notes that provisions of law that purport to direct or prohibit international negotiations, covert action, or the use of the armed forces are inconsistent with the Constitution’s commitment exclusively to the presidency of the executive power, the function of Commander-in-Chief, and the authority to conduct the Nation’s foreign policy. If the bill were presented to the President with provisions that would prevent the President from protecting America and allied and cooperating nations from threats posed by Iran, the President’s senior advisers would recommend he vetoed the bill.
Once again, you have the Bush/Cheney spinning machine madly spinning the tale that there is a threat to develop nuclear weapons. Yet, Iran has agreed to allow UN inspectors in, and also to scale back its enrichment of uranium. Does this sound like a country ramping up a nuclear weapons program? This is the lie that Bush and Cheney used on us with Iraq. Do not allow them to use it on us to excuse aggression against Iran. The Iran excuse is Cheney’s agenda, which he is pushing hard, despite resistance from Condoleeza Rice and Robert Gates.
It’s time: Cheney has to be impeached first. I am saying it to my representatives in Congress via fax and email and phone, too. Bruce Fein, a conservative, has this to say:
Then President George W. Bush outsourced the lion’s share of his presidency to Vice President Cheney, and Mr. Cheney has made the most of it. Since 9/11, he has proclaimed that all checks and balances and individual liberties are subservient to the president’s commander in chief powers in confronting international terrorism.
Fein goes on to list Cheney’s ‘abuses and excesses’, including the creation of military commissions (tribunals) to prosecute ‘war crimes’, kidnappings, secret detentions, and torture, championed torture, advocated signing statements intended to defy Congress, engineered the warrantless domestic surveillance program, assisted in the politicization of the justice department and subsequent subversion of justice in the form of the Libby pardon, and abused executive privilege while simulateously claiming not to be part of the executive branch of government, declaring himself a sort of fourth branch, unchecked by normal constitutional limits.
What more do we need? Impeachment is an imperative, not an option. Please write your representatives and urge them to begin impeachment proceedings against Cheney and then Bush. It is time for us to stand against the dictatorial and subversive nature of these men and reclaim this democracy which is of the people, by the people and for the people. All of them.
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