Liquid Bombing the Constitution
Michael Chertoff, the Federalist Society gremlin and current bossman of the Ministry of Homeland Security, has it out for the Constitution. “We have to make sure our legal system allows us” to trash the Bill of Rights, Chertoff told the Associated Press. “It’s not like the 20th century, where you had time to get warrants.” In order to create the proper environment for chucking the Constitution, the neocons are pushing hard on the latest incident of fake terrorism, a hyped non-attack led by a pregnant woman and a pizza delivery driver.
“Chertoff made clear his belief that wider authority could thwart future attacks at a time when Congress is reviewing the proper scope of the Bush administration’s executive powers for its warrantless eavesdropping program and military tribunals for detainees held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba,” the Associated Press continues. “Congress is now reviewing some of the programs after lawmakers questioned the legality of the warrantless eavesdropping program and the Supreme Court ruled in June that the tribunals defied international law and had not been authorized by Congress.”
However, Chertoff and his buddies at the Richard Mellon Scaife funded Federalist Society will make darn sure the Constitution does not get in the way of the war against Muslims. In order to get a proper perspective on the Federalist Society and Chertoff’s thinking, consider who is associated with this club of reactionary fascists—Edwin Meese, Irving Kristol, Antonin Scalia, John Bolton, John Negroponte, and Fox News wunderkind William Kristol.
As usual, the latest non-terrorist event is being exploited to further erode our constitutional liberties. “Following the foiled United Kingdom bomb plot, the Bush administration is expected to use the terrorist threat to regain the upper hand in congressional debates and push for government action before the November elections,” reports the War Street Journal. “Republicans appear to be circling around a new strategy to advocate stronger counterterrorism laws and expand domestic surveillance, while pushing back against civil libertarians.”
Note how, as usual, “civil libertarians” endanger us all in their zeal to appease and enable terrorists, never mind that said terrorists are more often than not government patsies or clueless unfortunates caught in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff is emerging as a point man in the drive for tougher laws, yesterday noting Britain’s ability to hold suspects without publicizing the charges. Appearing on ABC News’s ‘This Week with George Stephanopoulos,’ Mr. Chertoff said he would like to see a renewed look at U.S. laws that could give authorities here the flexibility to detain suspects for longer periods of time, noting that the British have such latitude.”
Of course, the British don’t have a Bill of Rights and if Chertoff and the neocons have their way, we won’t have one here either. The “flexibility to detain suspects for longer periods of time” translates into indefinite detention minus formal charges, in other words the concept of habeas corpus will be thrown out the window if these guys get their way. It is sincerely ironic that the concept of habeas corpus is rooted in English Common Law (i.e., the “Great Writ”), not that you would recognize any such tradition in Britain now. In America, since the founding, the concept of habeas corpus has endured attack on numerous occasions, most notably Lincoln’s suspension of the writ of habeas corpus during the Civil War and the same by FDR during the Second World War, resulting in the concentration camp internment of thousands of Japanese Americans.
In the coming days, we will be expected to endure the sincerely absurd pretext of “liquid bombs” as an excuse to further erode our civil liberties. Such freak show nonsense beamed into American living rooms 24-7 by the corporate media makes fertile soil (as in manure applied liberally) for tyranny window dressed as a compassionate government attempting to save us from terrorists wielding sports drink bombs. “Recent polls show while Americans are concerned that the U.S. government will go too far in monitoring the activities of potential terrorists in the U.S. and violate the privacy of average citizens, they also are supportive of legislation such as the Patriot Act, and on balance have been inclined to embrace controversial antiterror steps, such as telephone and financial surveillance, over civil-liberties concerns. Republican congressional leaders have already begun to raise the possibility that changes might be needed.”
Call it a shell game. Yet another outrageous “foiled terrorist act,” completely over the top and indeed comical, if not for its serious ramifications, points the American people down the primrose path to dictatorship, accepting the draconian Patriot Act “on balance,” while embracing “controversial antiterror steps” (for instance, turning airports—and soon enough, other travel venues—into Gestapo zones), all for their own good, of course.
Pat Roberts, chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and backroom fixer who made sure to cover up the stinking pile of neocon lies and fabrications in the lead up to the invasion of Iraq, expressed his utter contempt for our constitutional system: “Roberts … told CBS’s ‘Face the Nation’ that he believes the British have better intelligence tools than Americans. ‘If you want to get a warrant, all you have to do is call up a minister, in regards to Great Britain,’ he said. Sen. Roberts stopped short of advocating similar changes, but added ‘it seems to me that they have taken actions that would really speed that along.’” Adopting these “intelligence tools” (akin to the “tools” used by the Nazis and other fascists down through the years) would take a big chunk out of the Constitution, viz. the Fourth Amendment and the requirement that a court warrant be issued on probable cause.
“Similar sentiment has been expressed by senior Republicans in the House as well. ‘You can’t be going to court every time you want to monitor these conversations because they come in at a rapid pace. And… we have to get away from this concept that we have to apply civil-liberties protections to terrorists,” Peter King (R., N.Y.), the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said last week on Fox News’s ‘The O’Reilly Factor,’” a near perfect venue for the fascist King who hates the Constitution, as it is used to appease “terrorists,” never mind a predominant number of these so-called “terrorists” are in fact government patsies.
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