And now Congress may soon lose the power to remove him even if they tried, because Bush may be only one Supreme Court confirmation away from having the votes he needs on the Court to over-rule an Impeachment and Conviction by the House and Senate. If impeached by the House and convicted by the Senate, Bush would simply go before the Supreme Court and claim that the radical "Unitary Executive Theory," combined with his supposedly "Inherent Powers" as Commander in Chief of the Military, together give him the Constitutional Authority to do whatever he wants to do in time of perpetual war, which is forever. And if Samuel Alito is a member of this Court, it seems very likely that he might be the deciding vote in a 5 to 4 majority voting in favor of Bush and against Congress and the People. Alito is a strong supporter of the Unitary Executive Theory ("Fuehrerprinzip," as Hitler called it), as is Chief Justice Roberts. As a Reagan Administration lawyer years ago, Alito helped develop the "Signing Statement" technique which Bush has been using to claim authority to disobey the Laws. Then why shouldn't he vote to uphold the very practices which he helped to create?
So how did we get to this terrible place where we now find ourselves? How did the Bush Power Grab get this far? And why hasn't it been stopped before now? Let's try to see . . .
In the space of a few short years, here's what has happened:
The "Big Business" and "Fat Cat" Republicans are the natural heart of the Republican Party - always have been, since Lincoln's death; always will be. And they provide the massive flow of money which finances the Republicans in all important elections. "You help me with money, I'll help you with money." Thus the Bush power grab is always well financed.
2. BUSH HAS ELIMINATED ALL SERIOUS CRITICISM IN THE MAJOR NEWS MEDIA, BECAUSE THE "BIG BUSINESS" AND "FAT CAT" REPUBLICANS NOW OWN AND CONTROL THEM. Earlier Federal restrictions on Corporate ownership have been lifted, and the Corporations have gobbled up all the news media. The heart of Journalism has been cut out and replaced with entertainment and fluffy features. American Corporate Journalism is now a bad joke. Nobody should take it seriously because it does almost no serious work. Its true purpose is to make money for the owners and to keep the Republicans in power. The so-called "Liberal bias in the Media" is pure illusion. Sure, the owners let a few coo-coos on the left rant and rave, just to make it look like we have "Freedom Of The Press For All People." But that is just a useful fantasy, and not the truth. "See! We have Freedom of the Press! Look at that hippie over there calling us bad names. See, we let him express himself. We have Freedom!" But when push comes to shove, the dissident voices are not heard, because the owners won't allow it to happen. And many of the so-called reporters are now wealthy celebrities themselves, with no motivation to rock the boat for any reason.
So the Republicans are never seriously criticized in the Media, and voters are kept in the dark. Thus the Bush Power Grab always gets the favorable news coverage it needs to continue and expand.
3. BY KEEPING INTEREST RATES ARTIFICIALLY LOW, PLUS MASSIVE SPENDING ON THE WARS, THE ECONOMY HAS BEEN ARTIFICIALLY BOOSTED IN THE SHORT RUN. Housing prices have soared and spending has been strong, giving a false and temporary illusion of prosperity to millions of people. Meanwhile, the National Debt has increased by $2.508 trillion dollars, or 44%, since Bush came into office in January of 2001, from $5.662 trillion at the end of 2000 to $8.170 trillion at the end of the year 2005. (See http://www.loveallpeople.org/publicdebt.html for details. And Consumer Credit Outstanding has risen by $.336 trillion, or 33% from 1.021 trillion in November, 2000 to $1.357 in November, 2005 (the latest figures available today - seasonally adjusted.). Source: http://www.federalreserve.gov/releases/g19/hist/cc_hist_sa.html So we are living way too high off borrowed money. Some writers are even predicting total collapse of our economy because of this excessive debt. (Search Google.com for "United States debt") But the media are asleep again, and most most people do not recognize the problems ahead. And the Bush Power Grab continues.
4. BY ALWAYS FAVORING ISRAEL OVER ITS ENEMIES, BUSH HAS AVOIDED SOME OF THE CRITICISM HE MIGHT OTHERWISE HAVE RECEIVED. Many of our finest intellectual, political, and religious leaders are emotionally attached to the state of Israel, for one reason or another. They feel warmly toward Bush because he always seems to support their favorite foreign country, no matter what kind of trouble it faces. Thus the Bush Power Grab receives less opposition than would be expected from these key Leadership individuals in both parties.
5. THE COLLAPSE OF THE SOVIET UNION HAS HURT THE MORALE OF THE ECONOMIC LEFTISTS AND GREATLY HELPED THE MORALE OF THE LAISSEZ-FAIRE CAPITALISTS. Marxist economics was always the intellectual heart of the anti-Capitalist forces in the world. It was Karl Marx who invented the word "Capitalism," and it was he who explained what it was and how it worked. Marxism provided an organized way of understanding the world, a way in which Capitalism, by its very nature, was seen to be inherently evil: it unfairly exploited the workers, created great social and economic injustice, and always led to war. So they had a fairly strong case for opposing Capitalism. But unfortunately for the Marxists, Communism doesn't work very well, and it failed in head-on competition with the Capitalist economies. Did you know that one of the main causes of household fires in the Soviet Union was exploding television sets! That's right, exploding television sets! (This supposedly from Victor Belenko, MiG-25 fighter pilot who defected in 1976 - "Defense Electronics", Vol 20, No. 6, pg. 100) To me, that says everything you need to know about Communism: it just doesn't work. (P.S. The Chinese aren't Communists any more; they're Fascists. But that's another story for another day.)
So American Capitalists were invigorated with victory, and their harshest opponents were left with a theory that had failed the reality test. And all the Soviet money that had been funneled into American leftist organizations suddenly stopped coming. When I was in school forty years ago, the Economics Departments were filled with big-Government Keynesians plus a few outright Marxists. Now, they are filled with messianic supporters of free-trade, laissez-faire Capitalism. So when Bush began his Power Grab, the institutional forces against him were weaker and more disorganized than before.
7. 9/11/2001 - THE TERRORIST ATTACKS OF SEPTEMBER 11, 2001 HAVE PROVIDED BUSH WITH THE APPARENT REASON HE NEEDS TO JUSTIFY HIS POWER GRAB: "TO KEEP AMERICANS SAFE!" Never mind that it was Bush himself who made America unsafe by his negligence in disregarding repeated warnings of terrorist trouble ahead, before 9/11. And never mind that the way in which Bush responded to these attacks has ignited anti-American hatred throughout the Muslim world, boosting the number of willing terrorists maybe ten to twenty times more than before 9/11, thus making us less safe than we were before. And never mind the total disaster of this idiot war in Iraq. And never mind the fact that Iran is no longer restrained by a strong Saddam in Iraq. No. All of these things are covered over by the oft-repeated need to Keep Americans safe."
So where will it end? Will Samuel Alito be confirmed and take his place on a Bush-Majority Supreme Court? Will it become impossible to remove Bush from office, no matter what he does? Will his political enemies such as myself start to disappear mysteriously, for "National Security" reasons? I don't know. It's up to you, the readers, and your elected Representatives in the United States Senate, who will soon be voting to confirm or reject Samuel Alito.