Monday, January 23, 2006

THE CONSTITUTION: A FOND FAREWELL

First, let’s give credit to the Constitution. It did last over 200 years and that’s not bad. And it took an unusual combination of unfortunate circumstances and criminal behavior to bring it down. The United States was a noble experiment in government – an experiment in managing the innate love of power that motivates our souls. The plan wasn’t idealistic or naive. It was creative, and based on stark reality. We had to find a way for rulers to be controlled. They could not be allowed to call the shots completely on their own. The world had seen enough of kings.
Every kid in school heard the phrase “checks and balances” and the concept worked pretty damn well for over two centuries. Power was split amongst three branches of government, and monitored by a free and independent press.
The last word went to the voting public, and they responded: the despotism that had been so much a part of the world’s history was finally eliminated, at least from this country. What a magnificent time. The idea took off and America flourished. If the citizens of another country ever try democracy and freedom again, they could do a lot worse than imitate our system. In fact, they couldn’t do much better.
So what went wrong? Basically one party seized all three branches of the government. No more checks and balances. That in itself shouldn’t have been enough but the voting process was corrupted and a presidential election was stolen. The Supreme Court grabbed the power to decide a presidential election and away we went. Remember what Shakespeare wrote about what happens after a king seizes power through deceit? Elections continue to be rigged with no way of even checking the results. The rulers talk endlessly about democracy abroad while they try and end it here.
What about the press? The media has been purchased and neutralized by the same corporate interests who have purchased the legislative branch. If the electorate could vote, they still would be subject to the endless government propaganda of corporate media, with very little chance of hearing the real story. And what is that story?
It’s simple: The United States has changed its form of government. The President is claiming unlimited powers and there is nothing to check him. Without saying the word, he’s become a king. He still gives lip service to the rule of law, but the list of impeachable offences he has committed grows almost monthly. To him, the Constitution is an impediment – an inconvenience that he must work around. It is no longer relevant. He believes with all his heart that he IS the rule of law. And he has the nerve to try and argue that this is what our forefathers had in mind. There is a general malaise amongst the citizens because they realize that nothing can be done. There is no one left to check the man’s power. The fact that we can't correct our course, proves our system has changed. In the old days, we could fix things, if they got out of hand. Our system is broken and no one I talk to believes we can repair it. Do you? How?
The stunning part is that the President acts as if being a despot is an original idea. He doesn’t even realize the world has dealt with his kind for time immortal. Such is his knowledge of history. His approach is not just horrendously dangerous – it’s trite. He is everything this country tried to avoid all rolled into one.
President Bush and his cronies have ruined a good thing here. How could they be allowed to do that? There is an urge to be angry but at what? We shouldn’t blame the Constitution. After all it did last a long time, and it took a massive effort of criminal behavior to bring it down. The Constitution was magnificent. I’m really going to miss it.

5 Comments:

At 9:19 PM, Blogger Blast said...

I for one, am extremely angry. The GOP whines about people that just flat out "hate Bush"! We don't give him a chance. Well, for those of us able to recoginize his (Bush) "illegalities" and LIES, LIES, LIES, how in the hell can you get past the state of putrifaction that he has plunged our government and entire country into. If refusing to be led around like a sheep makes me a "Bush-Basher", then that is par for the course, because I "Bang Bush" every chance I get!
Simple fix to our problem Amend the constitution to the following:
1st Amendment:
Congress must be split down the middle. Half conservative, half liberal...no swing votes all 50/50, but there will also be an oversight committee with 9 members voted on by the people. This committee will be responsible for two things: 1 - swing vote in a deadlocked congress and 2 - to conduct internal investigations for continuous "checks and balance". It will also be illegal to approach the committee from members of congress, lobyists, or any other meber of the executive, legislative or judicial branches.
2nd Amendment:
The press will revert back to "freedom of the press" and no longer allowed to be owned by a corporation; if you own say, The New York Times that is the only business you may own. It will be illegal for any member of the executive, legislative or judicial branch to approach (buy) the press, this includes lobbyists. Equal time will be given to ALL political parties during campagnes and elections periods. It shall NOT cost a candidate any money to use the media/TV. The media will be given tax breaks or kick backs for alotments of air time.
Admitedely, these ideas need some fine tuning, but you get the general idea.

 
At 9:43 PM, Blogger Bill McDonald said...

Dear Blast,
Thanks for your response. You've obviously been thinking about this and I appreciate you taking the time to type your ideas out.
I'm stuck on the rigged elections. As Ohio proved so dramatically in their recent election, it is hard to vote out electronic machines when you're using them to do it. Democracy is OVER in Ohio.
If we could just get a paper trail back we'd have a chance. Have you noticed how these politicians act like they can't lose? They must know they can't.

 
At 12:01 AM, Anonymous Auggie said...

Very well said. I laughed the other day when I heard a caller to a leftie talk show warn that "One day, like the frog who doesn't jump out of the pot of water heated slowly, we'll wake up and it will be too late." I laughed because it's ALREADY too late. The president is a goddamn dictator and no one with a public voice will utter that word. How long before they declare martial law?

 
At 8:11 AM, Blogger Bill McDonald said...

Dear Auggie
I was wondering why I've been feeling like a cooked frog lately.

 
At 2:47 PM, Blogger rickyragg said...

Bill, I enjoy reading comments from your fellow space travelers, strange as they may be. Remember, you're judged by the company you keep.

I offer a few more amendments:

3rd Amendment:
blast shall not "bang bush" any more - "bashing" is bad enough.
4th Amendment:
All spittle shall be cleaned from your keyboard after posting deranged, paranoid comments.
5th Amendment:
No constitutional amendments from commenters who can't spell.

 

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