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America, a Hemorrhaging Democracy

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As America bleeds, Bush continues to pour salt in an already cavernous wound that foretells a dim diagnosis for democracy.

In a recent article, entitled, "Bush has taken his role as 'the decider' beyond good government", Washington Post writer, David Broder, thinks Bush has taken his self-appointed position as 'the decider' beyond just "good government." (Gee, Mr. Broder thanks for that salacious piece of information.) While at first glance Broder's article appears to at least start to infuse some needed opposition and dissent into the blood stream of the press, instead Broder only glosses over the cavernous wound Bush inflicted on our country with a mercurochrome-like brush stroke to temporarily alleviate the pain and mask the monstrous bleeding.

The heart of his editorial piece is centered on Rep. Barney Frank's (of Massachusetts) view of the Bush presidency and a recent speech Frank's gave that Broder mistook as grounds to marginalize the liberal blogs and the netroots community. Broder also sadly uses Frank's speech to insinuate that those of us accusing Bush of "subverting American Democracy" lack any credibility and need a reality check to see that, "This [country] remains, in the sixth year of the Bush presidency, a very free country."

While Broder flirts back and forth with actually saying Bush violated a number of laws and the Constitution, he digresses each time into ramblings of checks and balances and abandonment of congressional oversight. Acting like an awkward 15 year-old school boy, who wants to ask a beautiful girl to the big dance, he just can't bring himself to say what he thinks - that Bush is a criminal, a war monger, a despot and that congress is merely a drawn curtain that vainly attempts to hide the anguish and wails coming from everywhere America. As more of our right to pursue happiness is siphoned off into a blood coffer labeled for transfusion into the veins of Corporate Welfare America, Bush toadies grow fatter while the faces of the middle class grow pale and cold.

Feeling that it was time for a second opinion, I wrote Broder and explained, while Rep. Frank may have distanced himself from some of the leftist blogs - his intimation that blogs and the left are trivial or on the fringe edge is pure misinformation to his readers. The current netroots community represents tens of millions of people and has an ever increasing voice and influence in American politics. The main stream media is not doing its job of accurate, complete and fair reporting, so the netroots reports on what everyone really needs to know or the MSM thinks, but is often too afraid or timid to say for fear of being labeled unpatriotic or un-American by the demagogues of Bush's faux democracy.

Frank's assessment that Bush's 750 signing statements "[are] in effect a way for the president to ignore or dismiss sections of laws passed by Congress which he finds objectionable", are more than a simple slap in the face to Congress and the citizens it is intended to represent, they are expressly forbidden by the Constitution. Article I, Section 7, Clause 3; clearly states that the president must either sign a bill EXACTLY as it is written or he may veto it. The president may not append, redact or modify a bill with a signing statement. This, in and of itself, Bush's irreverence for ignoring the laws, or creating his own version with signing statements, violates his oath of office and is an impeachable offense.

Contrary to the position of Broder's article that seems to take up along with Mr. Frank's speech, is that what Bush has done by attaching signing statements to bills, using the military to wage a war of aggression, violating the 1978 FISA law and ordering illegal spying on US citizens, data mining phone and bank records, condoning torture, permitting extraordinary rendition and refusing to bend to the will of over 70 percent of the country is the very definition of an authoritarian or despot!

Congress has abdicated most of its oversight responsibility and what little they do engage in, they pander to Bush's wishes, rather than honoring their constitutional duties by introducing bona fide checks and balances that should have reigned in an imperial presidential campaign long ago. By now, a responsible congress would have introduced articles of impeachment, voted on them and passed the indictment on to the Senate for trial.

I found that Broder's column, while some points are valid about Bush overstepping his bounds, does little to paint a clear and complete picture of the real transgressions and infringements against this nation Bush has perpetrated and does what most other political writers in the MSM do; they sanitize the subject matter at hand, then duck behind a flag for cover.

We may be a "a very free country" at this moment, but the suppression of civil rights, violation of constitutional amendments, such as the Fourth amendment, lying to congress about reasons to take a nation to war and until a newspaper article "outed" Bush, lying repeatedly about the warrantless NSA spying program, shameless "cozying up" to the religious right that ignores separation of church and state and the constant propaganda use of 9/11 to incite fear, hatred and xenophobia is nothing short of a quick slide into tyranny. As one republican congressman, Ron Paul of Texas referred to our present governmental methods and system as a period of "soft fascism".

Taken as an omnibus of red flag indicators, the diagnosis for our democracy begins to look more fatal than fateful and a rather precipitous fall into the abyss of theocracy, despotism and loss of true liberty is about to ensue if the hemorrhaging is not stopped immediately.
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Frank J. Ranelli is an independent scholar, skeptic and critic, author and essayist. His erudite and iconoclastic style of provocative writing has been extensively published in a variety of news outlets and across (more...)
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