Progressive politics, ideas & culture


the creaky democracy down south

This Magazine Staff

Don’t know if y’all are following the snoopgate story down in the States—the Presidential authorization of domestic wiretapping and spying without a warrant or the oversight of the secret court already in place to facilitate such emergency measures. Now the President and Vice-President claim they are simply restoring powers to the Presidency that should never have been taken away… from Richard Nixon, after he broke the law.

Here’s a terrifying, I mean hilarious, story from Newsweek, about a President so sure he’s not doing anything wrong that he summons the powers that be at the New York Times to his office to try and stop them from printing a story about what he’s doing.


Bush was desperate to keep the Times from running this important story—which the paper had already inexplicably held for a year—because he knew that it would reveal him as a law-breaker. He insists he had “legal authority derived from the Constitution and congressional resolution authorizing force.” But the Constitution explicitly requires the president to obey the law. And the post 9/11 congressional resolution authorizing “all necessary force” in fighting terrorism was made in clear reference to military intervention. It did not scrap the Constitution and allow the president to do whatever he pleased in any area in the name of fighting terrorism.

The chickens, they are a’roosting.

“One leader, one people, signifies one master and millions of slaves.”

— Albert Camus

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