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Observations of a patriotic progressive historian, media critic & former journalist


  • By the author of The Conservative Resurgence and the Press: The Media’s Role in the Rise of the Right and of Journalism at the End of the American Century, 1965-Present. A former journalist with a Ph.D. in journalism, history and political science, McPherson is a past president of the American Journalism Historians Association and a board member for the Northwest Alliance for Responsible Media.

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George W. Bush: We don’t need no stinking Constitution; GOP rushes to public trough

Posted by James McPherson on March 3, 2009

As Republicans try to figure out whether they fear Rush Limbaugh more than they dislike him, and as the media fall all over themselves to cover the largely irrelevant GOP circus, we keep learning new depths of disturbing information about the Bush administration, information that makes some of us hope that circus never comes back to town.

We’ve known for years that George W. Bush was a liar, a criminal, a fool and an egomaniac, a combination that made him probably the most dangerous president in our history (Richard Nixon may have been as bad, but that was during a time when Republicans still elected members of Congress who put country over party).

Thanks to documents that Barack Obama has ordered released and the efforts of some good reporters, we’re learning more about just how dangerous Bush was. Now Newsweek reports that the Bush administration even considered trying to overturn the First Amendment. The idea came via a memo co-written by the scariest lawyer in America, John Yoo (scarier than Alberto Gonzales only because he’s a lot smarter).

Newsweek’s Michael Isakoff writes: “The Oct. 23, 2001, memo suggested the president could even suspend press freedoms if he concluded it was necessary to wage the war on terror. ‘First Amendment speech and press rights may also be subordinated to the overriding need to wage war successfully,’ Yoo wrote in the memo entitled “Authority for Use of Military Force to Combat Terrorist Activity Within the United States.”

Somebody in the administration (maybe a leftover “limited government” conservative who somehow snuck in) apparently questioned the memo (or realized that most of the media had pretty much ignored their First Amendment rights to question the government, anyway, so it would be silly to stir them out of their slumber). Finally the idea apparently was considered “so extreme that it was essentially (and secretly) revoked–but not until October of last year, seven years after the memo was written and with barely three and a half months left in the Bush administration. (emphasis added)

I have many mixed emotions about Barack Obama, but at least there’s no such problem with George W. Bush–unless a combination of disgust, revulsion and curiosity about why that war criminal isn’t facing charges would be considered “mixed emotions.”

Fortunately, Bush and most of his ilk have moved on, even if they don’t know where they’re headed. Anyplace they can get us to pay for the trip, perhaps–maybe you noticed who benefits most from the new stimulus bill that virtually all Republicans voted against. Yep, red states.

Conservatives do love their earmarks (just as they also apparently subscribe to the most online pornography). And as the Huffington Post reports, the new stimulus bill, like the tax system in general, rewards red state porkers the most. As I’ve noted previously, one way to fix the economy might be to enforce a sort of Golden Rule by just treating Republicans as they would treat others: Cut off the tap, and let the piggies fend for themselves.

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6 Responses to “George W. Bush: We don’t need no stinking Constitution; GOP rushes to public trough”

  1. zelda said

    Check out the “amero” info.
    I see you erased my comments in places………..interesting.

  2. James McPherson said

    The only time I’ve ever intentionally deleted something from someone’s comment is in a total of three cases (including one of yours, I think), when someone sent a comment right away that corrected another one sent by the same person. In that case I went ahead and corrected the first to what they meant to say, and then deleted the second.

    Other than that, I’ve honestly never erased anything else, at least not on purpose–I believe in letting people have their say. So if something disappeared from your comment, I’m sorry, but please feel free to send it again. Thanks.

  3. zelda said

    Thanks………….

  4. […] of course, by gutless and clueless of Congress) spent the next few years doing all it could to strip us of freedom at […]

  5. […] to recognize that those zombies may be all that stands between democracy and even more dangerous monsters. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Zombie sightings: We have ARRIVEDblacklight […]

  6. […] other words, a political and legal situation like the one offered in the United States by the Bush administration, which of course did so much to promote good relations with Iran. Tagged with: Bush […]

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