Can you do some phone banking this weekend to ensure that Bush will be prosecuted for his crimes?
If you want to help
please do some phone banking for for Attorney
General of . Ms. Dennett has promised to work with Mr.
Bugliosi to charge Bush and follow the plan he laid out in his book.
I am asking you to make these calls because they represent one of the
few choices we have to actively move forward on holding Bush
accountable for what he has done to this country and the rest of the
Once you decide to make the calls, please go to the FILES section of
the and access the Word doc phone script (read, but
follow loosely) and take a page of calls (or more if you have
time). For the phone numbers, where there is no area code, the area
code is 802.
Before you start the calls, please e-mail me at
email@example.com and let me know what page(s) you took so we
don't call people more than once!
I thank you for helping with this project that is being supported by
the National Impeachment Network and the VoteStrike Network!
WHO WILL HOLD THE EXECUTIVE ACCOUNTABLE?
There are two quick answers, found in most civics books. The first is the electorate -- it can vote out the President at the next election. But that often is years later, and only if it is the President's first term and if executive dissembling is publicly revealed and constantly criticized. The second quick answer is the Judiciary. It is the role of the courts to hold the Executive to constitutional dictates.
But what is the reality? The simplistic answer, that the judiciary checks the executive, is rooted in a widely-held fallacy -- that as a separate co-equal branch of government it is politically independent and that its judgments are necessarily neutral and objective. Bush v. Gore and Korematsu v. U.S. are just two of many cases that starkly reveal that fallacy by exposing the political underpinnings of judicial decisionmaking in controversial cases. It is not that nine black-robed men and women simply vote their personal and political preferences. The legal method imposes decisional constraints. To maintain public legitimacy judges have to speak in the language of statutes, rules, and case precedents. As many commentators have observed about Bush v. Gore, however, the moorings of the legal method are a weak tether in hot political cases. The intricacies of stare decisis and the complexities of the three-tier standard of equal protection review, for instance, are manipulable by sophisticated, politically attuned judges.
As illuminated by the Hamdi and Padilla "enemy combatant" cases and the prosecution of Dr. Wen Ho Lee, public advocacy emerges in two realms. The first realm is critical legal argument by lawyers and civil and human rights organizations aimed at shaping judges' threshold selections of the level of judicial scrutiny, and ultimately the judges' responses to the specific legal challenges to executive actions. As a complement to usually narrow traditional legal arguments, this kind of critical legal advocacy aims to reveal what is really at stake, who benefits and who is harmed (in the short and long term), who wields the behind-the-scenes power, which social values are supported and which are subverted, how political concerns frame the legal questions, and how societal institutions and differing segments of the populace will be affected by the court's decision.
The second realm of advocacy is a species of public education: journalist essays, pundit commentaries, public letters to the editor, clergy sermons, scholars' op-ed pieces, community workshops and school forums, all critically analyzing and advocating the need for the courts to carefully scrutinize the Executive's national security actions. The goal is to create in the public culture a compelling sense that it must be the courts that exercise "watchful care" over our constitutional liberties -- that the Executive is charged with protecting our people and institutions from threats from without, and in turn that our courts are charged with protecting our liberties from threats from our own institutions.
The timing of both kinds of public advocacy is crucial. Advocacy of accountability is imperative at the "front end" and at the "back end" of apparent national security abuses
Every single one of the members of congress and the cabinet and all the national "leaders" should have gone on general strike themselves the day they heard about waterboarding.
We can allow them to get away with it or we can send a clear message to the next president that ENOUGH is ENOUGH!
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