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Alcibiades's Journal
Posted by Alcibiades in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Thu Dec 18th 2008, 10:49 AM
Am I particularly happy about Warren playing any role in the Obama inauguration? Not particularly. But what's really upsetting is that this is keeping us from keeping our heads in the game. This is a massive distraction that hits enough people's hot buttons that we've become rather obsessed.

This is a time when we need to stay focused. The Bush administration is about to leave office and, as it does so, it seems certain that they will make one final assault on the principle of the rule of law by issuing pardons to folks at many different levels in the White House, the administration and deep down into the various departments, where Bush's cronies have been engaged in criminality for the past eight years.

Obama and his people are doing everything they can to get their administration named and confirmed as rapidly as possible. As the clock winds down on the Bush administration, we need to stay focused on what's really important in preserving our democratic heritage, and that's making sure that the bastards don't get away with it. To this end, here are some simple ideas for LTTEs and anyone with access to the media:

* Bush should pledge that he will pardon no one appointed by his administration. If this administration has been observing the law, there should be no need to issue any pardons, preemptive, blanket or otherwise. This will not happen, but it should be a demand of ours anyway.

* The public needs to realize that pardons by an outgoing president of members of his administration are a measure of the criminality of that administration.

* We should preempt the preemptive pardons by predicting them. We need to get out there and say "Look, this is a criminal administration, and it is about to show the extent of its criminality by issuing pardons for criminal acts ordered by the president." We need to do this so that, in two years and four years when the country votes again, we can remind the voters of the massive criminality that takes place whenever and wherever Republicans see an opening.

* We should also be particular about what sorts of pardons are most unacceptable: blanket pardons, preemptive pardons and any pardons that are issued to people acting on the order of the president.
Such pardons would preempt the pursuit of justice by absolving the guilty before anyone has been charged with an offense, and would forever prevent an honest and impartial investigation of any wrongdoing. Moreover, any pardons of anyone who acted under Bush's orders show a clear conflict of interest on the part of the president, and violate the spirit of the law.

* Under no circumstances should the president be allowed to pardon himself. This set a dictatorial precedent, and gut any meaningful checks on executive power by the legislative or judicial branches.

* We should also be aware that Bush may seek to camouflage these pardons under the cloak of national security and the "war on terror," but that's a red herring. The administration's criminality is in no way limited to the conduct of any war--in fact, its criminality in other areas may eclipse even the terrible misdeeds Bush has committed in the name of national security.

Bush has ruled as a king, on who holds any constitutional check on his authority in contempt. As a consequence, his entire administration has run roughshod over our proud tradition of maintaining the rule of law, violating court orders, acts of Congress, and the Constitution itself in the process. THIS HAS BEEN THE STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION. We will know the full truth the day after Inauguration Day: until then, we need to occupy ourselves with making sure that Bush and his cronies--not just at the top, but, as the Monica Goodling matter has shown, deep into what are normally non-partisan jobs--are held accountable.

I am upset about the Warren thing. But I'm much more upset that Bush and his henchmen might escape justice.
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