Sunday, December 18, 2005


One very entertaining aspect of blogging, and reading blogs, is to read wingnut blogs. The right wingers have been twisting like pretzels lately to justify the illegal wiretapping of Americans by Bush. Firedoglake has a message for them:
What you have in this life is your own integrity. If you are willing to sell it so cheaply for a fleeting moment of power, that is your choice. But don't come crying to me the next time someone wiretaps your phone, searches your house and business without a warrant while holding you at gunpoint, hauls you off to an undisclosed location without any access to legal representation, applies coercive interrogation methods to get you to confess to a crime you didn't commit in the first place, and holds you for years before letting you go without ever actually charging you with a crime, all because you fit a certain profile based on your ethnic background or political beliefs.

If you think it can't happen in America, think again. We have laws in place for a reason, and when you allow the President to start selectively ignoring them, it sets a precedent for every other law enforcement official in the nation. We fought a revolution in this country to prevent just this sort of behavior -- we are a nation of laws, and not of imperial whim.
I think one of the reasons the right-wing is so willing to sell their souls to the devil is that they don't really believe it can happen to them. Keeping power = staying safe, remaining immune from such abuses by "collegues".

What they miss is something that I think is very very important. Abuse of power is not a right-wing phenomena. It's a human phenomena. There have been examples in history of brutal left-wing governments. The Soviet Union for example, or Red China. Who do you think was rounded up and killed by Stalin? It wasn't liberals.

Sure, Bush and the Republicans are currently in power. And Bush is setting all kinds of precedents of Presidential fiat and abuse. Will the next President roll back this new power? It's unlikely. So who gets wiretapped in a Democratic Presidency that has a Democratic Congress?

These issues of civil liberties are not about politics. They are about checks on natural human tendencies to abuse power. Remove those checks and anyone can end up being the victim......eventually.


At 11:55 AM, Blogger mikevotes said...

First, I must agree that I've read some pretty crazy stuff on the righty blogs. But to some degree, their appearance of crazy to you is a matter of perspective.

I haven't been reading your blog long enough to get an example, but to the crazy righties, for instance, gay marriage really does represent a threat to god mother and country. I don't agree with that, but from their perspective, the leftyblogs are completely treacherous, insane, and against god.

Now, in this specific example of the NSA spying, I don't know how anybody who supported Reagan's small government rhetoric, for example, could justify this intrusion into individual rights. In this case, the defense is truly ingenuine.

But I just wanted to make the point that where you sit, to some degree defines what appears crazy.

They think the leftyblogs are insane, treasonous(criticizing Bush and the war) and want to turn our country towards communism(food stamps and social programs.)

Kinda all over the map here, but on this issue I agree with you, but I wanted to keep this perspective on the table.


At 1:33 PM, Blogger Greyhair said...

You said exactly what I'm trying to say.

Other issue? Fine.

This issue? I just don't get it.


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