The people themselves may petition a court to convene a grand jury to investigate Bush's corrupt administration. Such a panel will have the power of the subpoena and the indictment.
It's not just 911 that such a panel might investigate. An overwhelming number of those favoring Bush's impeachment say that there is "plenty" to warrant Bush's removal from the office he seized.
But, given the recalcitrance of Congress, how are "the people" to proceed? I recommend the following handbook for the would-be activist: Facts About Grand Juries
In the year 2005, a growing majority of Americans were not only opposing the disastrous war against Iraq, they were opposing Bush on almost every issue from illegal government wiretapping to this government's planned theft of Social Security. It was in that year that a majority of Americans said that they supported the impeachment of George W. Bush. Even fewer support Dick Cheney. Others oppose impeachment and removing Bush simply because it would leave something even worse in his stead: Dick Cheney.
As I write this, Newsweek asks How Low Can He Go?
President Bush registers the lowest approval rating of his presidency-making him the least popular president since Nixon-in the new NEWSWEEK Poll.
June 21, 2007 - In 19 months, George W. Bush will leave the White House for the last time. The latest NEWSWEEK Poll suggests that he faces a steep climb if he hopes to coax the country back to his side before he goes. In the new poll, conducted Monday and Tuesday nights, President Bush's approval rating has reached a record low. Only 26 percent of Americans, just over one in four, approve of the job the 43rd president is doing; while, a record 65 percent disapprove, including nearly a third of Republicans.It's been some two years and nothing has been done. The situation is increasingly dangerous and demands a real investigation followed by impeachment, trial, and removal from office. Depending upon the specific charges, a criminal trial of Bush/Cheney's should begin immediately. Following that trial, Bush should be turned over to the International Tribunal at the Hague to stand trial for war crimes, crimes against the peace and crimes against humanity.
How frustrating it must be for thousands of bloggers, activists, journalists and writers to raise the issue of war crimes and high treason knowing that the odds of anything being done by officialdom are slim to none. Too often I am asked: you may be right but what the hell can we do about it? Too often I am left advising people to educate and agitate. At a time when not only the White House but Congress itself seems complicit in the ongoing war crime in Iraq, my answers are inadequate. Indeed, what can be done when the House of Representatives will not adequately investigate 911 let alone begin impeachment proceedings against George W. Bush.
On the other hand, a grand jury investigating the Bush White House would have sweeping powers to define the scope of its own investigation and the power of the subpoena to back it up. For example, Michael Moore wants the images made by hundreds of cameras trained on the Pentagon released. It would clear up the question: what did strike the Pentagon. Only a guilty government would not want you to know. It occurs to me that a Grand Jury could simply demand those items. Failure to comply is a crime.
Of course, Bushies will cite "national security" as did Nixon in Watergate. Bush prefers brinkmanship and, thus far, the Democrats have always backed down. But a Grand Jury is not the Congress. It does not have to stand for re-election. Would Bush really prefer to stonewall knowing that the issue would go straight to the Supreme Court? Would Bush risk a purely legal decision on the merits of the case?
In most instances, grand juries investigate issues brought to them by a prosecutor. In those cases, charges are returned in an indictment. Some states allow grand juries to act on their own. In those cases, charges are returned in what is called a "presentment". A presentment has the same legal effect and weight as an indictment, that is, both initiate a criminal case.
I want to know why a Federal Grand Jury was not convened to investigate 911 in the first place. Never mind! I know why! Bushco had a cover story to peddle. A real investigation would have only muddied the water. It would have delayed the onset of a war that Bush was hellbent and desperate to wage on behalf of his sponsors. Getting Bush out of the Oval Office is a matter of very real urgency.
There are remedies. The people waited patiently for a Democratic majority. Having got one, we are constantly disappointed. There must be millions, like me, who are sick to death of waiting for justice, millions like me who feel disenfranchised and abandoned by this "government of the people". The people simply must not wait for Congress to begin a real investigation.
Unless every judge in every state, in every county, in every town or city is crooked or, in other ways, bought and paid for by Bush's crooked gang, there may be a way to convene a Grand Jury that will fully investigate the events of 911 and bring charges against administration officials who may have facilitated or helped plan it. Simply, the people may petition a judge to convene a grand jury.
The time has come to brush up on some basics, in this case, the Grand Jury system. Here is a great link: Using a Grand Jury to Investigate the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks. What is often called a "runaway" Grand Jury could be useful right now. As pointed out in the article, Federal grand juries have already played central roles in the investigations of the Oklahoma City bombing, the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, and the bombing of two US embassies in Africa.
Grand juries are typically summoned by a court when an attorney general or a district attorney's motion is granted by the chief judge to empanel the body. But a court may also summons a grand jury upon its own motion and grand jurors are summoned from the same pool as trial jurors.
Abortion-Rights Opponents File Petition For Grand Jury To Investigate Death Of Woman Who Received Abortion At Kansas Clinic Abortion-rights opponents on Friday submitted a petition with 7,754 local signatures to a Sedgwick County, Kan., court to convene a grand jury to investigate the death of a woman who died three days after undergoing an abortion at the Women's Health Care Services clinic in Wichita, Kan., the AP/Wichita Eagle reports (Hegeman, AP/Wichita Eagle, 4/7). Kansas law allows a grand jury to be formed within 60 days of a petition filed with a state district court if the petition has at least 100 more signatures than 2% of the number of people in the county who voted in the most recent gubernatorial election.The point being --the people may petition a court to convene a grand jury. Here's an excerpt from just such a petition:
"We, the undersigned qualified electors of Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, petition the Court to immediately call a Grand Jury to convene in Oklahoma County for the purpose of conducting a thorough investigation into all aspects of the operations of the Police Department of Midwest City, Oklahoma; and, in addition to investigate into the offices, affairs, and conduct of the City Manager, Mayor, and City Council of Midwest City, Oklahoma; and, in addition, to investigate into any and all other matters called to the attention of the Grand Jury." From the same case:
-S TATE OF OKLAHOMA EX REL. BOB HARRIS, PETITIONER, v. HONORABLE CARMON C. HARRIS, CHIEF JUDGE OF THE DISTRICT COURT OF OKLAHOMA COUNTY, STATE OF OKLAHOMA, RESPONDENT.
14 We cannot determine as a matter of law that the petition for grand jury is a witch hunt based upon speculation or conjecture by the circulators and signers of the petition, nor can we carte blanche impugn their motive. This is the function of the grand jury. While the grand jury may, after investigation, return indictments, ouster proceedings, or otherwise make critical written reports as to the condition and operation of these offices, they may on the other hand submit a complimentary report on those officials and their offices. In any event, the discretion and authority lies with the grand jury as an inquisitorial body.Grand Juries typically meet in secret and there have been instances in which "runaway grand juries" abused their power and authority. But it was a runaway grand jury in the 1930s that investigated widespread mob corruption in New York and returned a number of bona fide indictments against mafia bosses. Recently, a grand jury in California almost closed down a county when it indicted almost every member of the government.
UPI/Zogby Poll: Majority give Bush Negative Ratings on Keeping U.S. Safe from Terrorism But half of Americans believe Bush Administration has allowed security measures to trump personal freedoms
More than half of Americans give President Bush 55% negative ratings on his performance in keeping the United States safe from terrorism and give the Department of Homeland Security a similar negative rating (56%) on its efforts. Nearly half of Americans (49%) believe the Bush administration has tipped the balance between personal security and personal freedom too far towards security, depriving the American people of too many freedoms, a new UPI/Zogby Interactive poll shows.
Slightly more than half (53%) said they are against the government having the ability to temporarily suspend federal privacy laws to enable agencies to better share counter-terrorism information, including the personal data of American citizens. Americans are divided over the Terrorism Surveillance Program. Half said they have a favorable view of the TSP under which the National Security Agency can monitor the international telephone and email communications of American citizens without a warrant if the communication includes and individual suspected of having ties to a terrorist organization like al-Qaeda. But nearly as many (45%) said they have a unfavorable view of the program. More than half (55%) said the TSP is a necessary and legal tool to protect Americans against terrorist activity, while 42% disagree.
The interactive survey of 5,932 adults nationwide was conducted from April 13-16, 2007 and carries a margin of error of +/- 1.3 percentage points.Additional resources:
Len Hart is a Houston based film/video producer specializing in shorts and full-length documentaries. He is a former major market and network correspondent; credits include CBS, ABC-TV and UPI. He maintains the progressive blog: The (more...)