Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Democracy Has Been Lost: "President and White House Counsel decide to Knowingly Break the Law"


If this man's testimony does not provide evidence that our attorney general should be fired (and that high crimes and misdemeanors have been occurring all along) on the spot - nothing does. James Comey's testimony before the Judiciary committee is shocking in its blatant disregard for the law, the checks and balances that have kept our government from resorting to a King and for the American people.

Comey testified that Attorney General Gonzalez while, white house counsel tried to strong arm then Attorney General Ashcroft to sign off the NSA wiretapping of American citizens while he lay critically ill in the hospital for pancreatitis. The Attorney General had already transferred power to Comey who refused to authorize the program as did Ashcroft. But, while he was ill Gonzalez and Andrew Card tried to make Ashcroft sign off while in his hospital bed to overrule Comey thinking, as Comey insinuated he may not understand what he was doing.

The highest advisors to the President in the government (seemingly with the authorization of the President) tried to pull a coup d'etat of the highest ranking law enforcement official in the United States. Shocking. As it turns out Ashcroft sat up in his bed and refused to sign reiterating his concern with the program. Andrew Card and Gonzalez then called Comey to come for an emergency meeting at the President's office. Comey said he would, but not without counsel and brought the Solicitor General of the United States.

As it turns out the NSA wiretapping authorization occurred without either Ashcroft or Comey's signature anyway. These people care nothing for Democracy or the rule of law (two tenets of which our government rests) and will stop at nothing to achieve their policy objectives.

We must speak out about this. Thanks to philasurfer for the updated headline.
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/15/washington/15cnd-attorneys.html?ex=1179892800&en=c81d70b7a98294fe&ei=5070&emc=eta1
Update: In light of the testimony revealed by James Comey yesterday, Senatory Hagel from Nebraska calls for the Attorney General's resignation.

7 comments:

philasurfer said...

The funny thing about this whole thing is the complete abdication of responsibility by the media. I see that most major media outlets have not covered this story at all, with the notable exception of the NYT. Mother Jones, the bastion of populist media, on their blog, is describing this as "circumventing the law".

Foxnews.com has a story titled "Ex-Aide, Ashcroft, Mueller Nearly Quit Over Secret Wiretaps" in which they call the wiretapping program "questionable". Because, yeah, the big news here is that the Ex-Aid nearly quit! The fact that the White House Counsel tried to bully an incapaciated patient into signing over unlawful amounts of power to the President, nope, no story there. Wow!

Why are we using terms like "circumvent the law" and "questionable" for a program that was ILLEGAL? Not only were they breaking the law, they were KNOWINGLY breaking the law. How do we know that they knew it was illegal? Because the DOJ told them it was illegal! What do these people have to do for the media to report that they have commited a crime?

The headlines should read, "President and White House Counsel decide to Knowingly Break the Law".

Kid Radical said...

Good point, I changed it. It is unconscionable what has happened to our gov't, but the media is totally complicit.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree more - the mainstream media (and even a few liberal media outlets) have completely abdicated their responsibility to provide objective and investigative reporting to the American people. Since this country's creation, the media has been a sort of 4th branch of government, providing checks and balances on the 3 main branches. But ever since 9/11, the media has acted as nothing more than a welcome mat for the administration's rhetoric, competely unquestioning all of the lies, half-truths, and just plain stupid assertions by Bush's various mouthpieces. No wonder Bush has had 3 press secretaries in only 6 years in office! How long can you keep your lunch down when you're spewing lies all day!

I was really expecting Keith Olbermann to say something scathing last night about all of this, but he, too, seems to have fallen asleep on the job.

Luckily, though, we have Glen Greenwald from Salon.com providing us with astute and comprehensive reporting on these major issues.

But we also have to wonder what our representatives in Congress are doing. Granted Comey's testimony was just heard yesterday, but since then we've only heard calls for Gonzales' resignation. Don't bother - he will not leave willingly. Instead, Congress needs to focus its attention on investigations and hearings with an eye toward impeaching not only Gonzales, but Bush and Cheney as well. They have made a mockery of their offices and of this country and we need to take the power back!

Daddydan said...

I have to blame the aemrican public a little, though. I really believe that mainstream outlets like CBS, MSNBC, ets. are too afraid to challenge their viewer, because, in general, their viewer doesn't want to think too much about the reality of the situation. They just want to be entertained.

philasurfer said...

I agree, in general, with your point daddydan. The lowest common denominator seems to drive media content, particularly on television. To some extent, the public is at fault.

Im not sure that is the case in this Gonzo hospital visit story. The dramatic story that Comey talked about the other day should be an easy sell for the media. The scandal-seeking, entertainment-driven public should devour that story. The only caveat being the difficulty of explaining, in an interesting way, the back story involving the NSA program and its illegality.

philasurfer said...

I agree, in general, with your point daddydan. The lowest common denominator seems to drive media content, particularly on television. To some extent, the public is at fault.

Im not sure that is the case in this Gonzo hospital visit story. The dramatic story that Comey talked about the other day should be an easy sell for the media. The scandal-seeking, entertainment-driven public should devour that story. The only caveat being the difficulty of explaining, in an interesting way, the back story involving the NSA program and its illegality.

I hear you though, people are so indifferent! Maybe it would be easier to sign up Steven Spielberg and just make a movie out of it!!

Daddydan said...

A great book that maybe you've already read is Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman. He rips apart our modern TV/computer-based culture which has made print-based discourse a thing of the past. If the story cannot be encapsulated into a 30-sec newsbite, it doesnt make it on TV. And people think like TV presents information. He writes that the Lincoln-Douglas debates went on for 3 or 4 hours at a time without a break. Comapere that to the circus that is a presidential debate today.