[Journal Menu]

[Home Page]


[100 Books]

[Other Sites]

Under Construction

San Francisco 2007 Gay Pride Parade.

July 3, 2007

Get Me Started
Tuesday. I'm not getting any less upset with the current administration now that Bush has commuted Mr. Libby's sentence. This administration has been routinely breaking laws in secret and then justifying them on weird off the wall grounds when they're discovered. Would they continue, would the people who carry out these felonies continue, if they saw Mr. Libby and his ilk sitting in a jail cell beside every other non-connected person who's committed these very same crimes? I'm ready to see a knock down drag out between Congress and the President because I'm worried this sort of thing is leading to something darker here in the “Land of the Free”. I'd add the “Home of the Brave”, but I'm no longer sure where the brave hang out around here anymore. All this “Rule of Law” and “Pluralistic Democracy” crap the President preaches to the rest of the world is just that: crap. No wonder he gets along so well with Vladimir Putin.

That's too low.

It just doesn't stop. They pass a law and call it the “Save the Forests” initiative, except it's the farthest thing you can imagine from the concept. OK. Clever. That's the way they've chosen to play, but it's not illegal - deceptive and immoral, perhaps - but people can read and people can figure it out. Sleazier than thou tactics, but suck it up: these are the big leagues, people play rough.

Breaking laws and committing felonies to promote their political agenda is another matter. Congress passed a law in 1977 making it a felony for any government official to eavesdrop on Americans without judicial approval, punishable by 5 years in prison for each offense. It is a felony for political officials to eavesdrop on Americans without judicial warrants, no question about it. In December 2005 it was revealed that the Bush administration had been conducting wiretaps for the past four years without seeking warrants, without mentioning the fact they were doing so to any of the members of Congress who, under law, should have been informed.

Now the argument can be made that whatever surveillance is being undertaken is necessary in the environment created after 9/11, nothing wrong with making the argument, but the way our country works, a country that pretends to operate under the rule of law, is the argument is made and the law is made or amended to allow such surveillance or you stop. If they'd come to the Congress after, say, a year, I could understand that. Too much excitement, they weren't thinking clearly during those first twelve months, but four years? We still don't know who the government is watching and for what. Nixon was after his political enemies. Is the Bush administration dabbling in political surveillance clearly unrelated to the defense of the country? They won't say. Why not?

This, to me, is a big deal. Now we have Mr. Libby who was pursued by a prosecutor appointed by the Bush administration and sentenced by a Bush appointed federal judge, all pursuant to criminal laws touted by their own ”tough on crime” political party, and now Mr. Libby has had his sentence commuted. With a full pardon to follow? Remember his attorney's opening statement at the trial? Libby was set up as the fall guy and he'd testify to that fact? Suddenly Mr. Libby is silent, he doesn't testify and his sentence is commuted by the President. Now Mr. Libby has no motivation whatsoever to tell the full story.

OK, I'm less and less happy with the Bush administration, join the club, and I'm moving into the camp of those who want criminal action brought against members of the administration for breaking the law. At a minimum I'd like to see the current administration introduce legislation to legitimate their behavior, legislation that is debated at length and voted up or down by a Congress that's back in its proper place in the balance of power.

You haven't mentioned the “detainment camps”?

Oh, man. Please don't get me started.

The photograph was taken at the San Francisco 2007 Gay Pride Parade with a Nikon D2Xs mounted with a 70-200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR lens at 1/200th second, f 2.8, ISO 100.