Sunday, July 08, 2007

Not That Executive Privilege Crap Again?


An attorney for Sara Taylor, a former top aide to White House adviser Karl Rove, notified the Senate that she was unlikely to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee July 11.

There they go again! What is it with these people and "executive privilege" this and "executive privilege" that. They can't claim that every single conversation that the president has must be protected from public disclosure. The only things that can be kept secret are matters of national security (which includes troop movements and such). Everything else falls under the category of "in the public interest" and, therefore, IMHO, should be disclosed as requested. To anyone who wants it. Including you and me. Why not? We're paying for it. You and I pay their salaries. They work for us, not the other way around, no matter what these blowholes in the White House think. Or the Cheney House.

Sara Taylor is no longer in the employ of the White House. There is no reason that she should be allowed to enjoy any kind of Executive Privilege. If she was still working there, an argument can be made. But she is now a private citizen and can be compelled to testify before Congress. She would be a fool to rely on her love and support for Bush to keep her out of that hearing room, for she will still go to jail if she doesn't. And in the end, she'll talk anyway. Besides, she wants to talk because she feels she's done nothing wrong. If she's done nothing wrong, what is the White House so afraid of? (I know, rhetorical quesiton to most of us. I'm interested in what the people out there who think they should be doing this have to say in its defense. Read on.)

To read the Art II powers of the President as providing an absolute privilege as against a subpoena essential to enforcement of criminal statutes on no more than a generalized claim of the public interest in confidentiality of non-military and nondiplomatic discussions would upset the constitutional balance of a “workable government” and gravely impair the role of the courts under Art III.

United States v. Nixon [1974]

They don’t have a leg to stand on with this “executive privilege” claim. And whose interest are being protected when they claim that? There's something about this from the decision that bothers me:

Mr. Chief Justice Marshall, sitting as a trial judge in the Burr case, supra, was extraordinarily careful to point out that

"[i]n no case of this kind would a court be required to proceed against the president as against an ordinary individual." 25 F. Cas., at 192.

Marshall's statement cannot be read to mean in any sense that a President is above the law, but relates to the singularly unique role under Art. II of a President's communications and activities, related to the performance of duties under that Article. Moreover, a President's communications and activities encompass a vastly wider range of sensitive material than would be true of any "ordinary individual." It is therefore necessary[Footnote 21] in the public interest to afford Presidential confidentiality the greatest protection consistent with the fair administration of justice. The need for confidentiality even as to idle conversations with associates in which casual reference might be made concerning political leaders within the country or foreign statesmen is too obvious to call for further treatment.

Hold on there a minute. "No further treatment? This is what I do not understand. What is the theory behind the idea that if a person's conversations with the president of the United States (conversations regarding non-classified public policy, mind you) were ever made public, it could cause embarassment for that person? So? What's wrong with that? What do they think they should be allowed to do, lie about it publicly? If they don't want to discuss it with the press, thena simple "No comment" will do. But if subpoenaed by Congress to testify about these conversations, then the public absolutely has the right to know in whose interests the government was acting. Ours, or Corporate America's?

Remember, it's YOUR money they're spending, and you are constitutionally entitled to know how it's being spent and why. THEY work for YOU, not the other way around. THEY are accountable to US, not to themselves, not to their party leaders, and not to the president of the United States. To US. And that goes for President George Bush and his President of Vice, Dick Cheney. Like it or not, they are answerable to us, and not just on Election Day 2004. EVERY day.

I have come to believe that every day that these two men, Bush and Cheney, these two men in particular, remain in office, is a spit in the face of every man and woman who died in Iraq, and every one of their family members, and every one of the friends they left behind, and all because of a big, huge, steaming pile of bullshit lies!

1 comment:

Tirana Tirani said...
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