Sunday, November 18, 2007

Executive Irony

Would you disagree with the following statements?
When the Founders drafted the Constitution, they had a clear understanding of tyranny. They also had a clear idea about how to prevent it from ever taking root in America. Their solution was to separate the government's powers into three co-equal branches: the executive, the legislature, and the judiciary. Each of these branches plays a vital role in our free society. Each serves as a check on the others. And to preserve our liberty, each must meet its responsibilities -- and resist the temptation to encroach on the powers the Constitution accords to others.
The President's oath of office commits him to do his best to "preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States." I take these words seriously. I believe these words mean what they say.... Others take a different view.... they forgot that our Constitution lives because we respect it enough to adhere to its words. Ours is the oldest written Constitution in the world. It is the foundation of America's experiment in self-government. And it will continue to live only so long as we continue to recognize its wisdom and division of authority.
Those are pretty good, no? I think they do a pretty good job of explaining the concept of separation of powers in this country. But I have a hard time taking it seriously when it's said by the current executive, who I think has done as much to disrespect this Separation as any President in recent memory (recess appointments as an end around to Congressional approval, while technically legal, is not exactly in keeping with respecting the Separation of Powers; nor is ordering Congress to grant federal courts the jurisdiction to readdress the judicial decision in the Teri Schiavo case because he disagreed with the courts' findings, and warrantless wiretapping, there are those of us who still think is a violation of the Fourth Amendment). I'm not alone in finding this somewhat incredible. Glenn Greenwald commented on this, as well as other statements offered by this administration, such as the President accusing Congress of "acting like a teenager with a new credit card" for their budget actions. Unless I remember incorrectly, President Bush has spent more than any other president since LBJ (indeed the link I provided above says the same). It's a bit like the pot calling the kettle black, don't you think, for this President to call Congress names with regard to budget? I understand the desire to get back to fiscal conservatism, but statements like these are just irresponsible.

1 comment:

photog said...

Under the Clinton administration the American economy reached its zenith and the federal deficit was at a minimum. Under the current Bush administration, those so-called Fiscal Conservatives, we have seen exactly the opposite. Perhaps the Republicans have outgrown their "fiscal conservative" title, willfully passing it to the democrats.