“Most people are under-reacting” to the latest Bush scandals.
That's what Jonathan Chait (& The Carpetbagger Report) say. And indeed, people are awfully calm about this stuff. The question is why.
So which is it: Is this seeming calm
(a) A classic case of boiled frog;
(b) A recognition that there's a light at the end of the tunnel, even if it is still 641 days away;
(c) Because we trust Congress to staunch the wounds now;
(d) A media illusion; or,
(e) Real, because it's not really such a big deal?
Or is there an (f) I'm overlooking?
(f) too complicated and too “inside the Beltway”.
f) People assume that all administrations do it, that they have always done it and I’m doing fine thanks.
The Pearl Harbor Day Massacre is a violation of a very important tradition which is not well known. Most Americans probably never new that US attorneys were not regularly politicized. If stuff like this has been going on for two centuries, it can’t be all that dangerous. To understand that the Bush administration is a deadly danger to the Republic, one has to know about the norms that once restrained administrations.
On another thread, I have never e-mailed for traffic and links. I comment.
In 2001 Bush nominated, and Congress subsequently confirmed, 28 year old J. Strom Thurmond Jr., son of then Senator Strom Thurmond, as United States attorney for South Carolina. He had been out of law school for three years. So Ithink here in SC we are sort of used to the idea of the politicization of US Attorney selection.
What are people to do? After marching in rallies, after signing petitions, after calling your senators and congressmen (and being told repeatedly that “the votes aren’t there”), after trying to galvanize your state representatives to impeach state by state (with no success), what’s left to do?
Blaming Bush and Cheney only goes so far. They are what they are. They couldn’t have gotten away with what they’ve been doing without the acquiescence of Congress and the people. It would be like the businesses in Amity blaming the great white shark for their financial woes and expecting others (commercial and sport fishermen) to do something about it. It’s not the greatest analogy, but my point is, short of marching on the Capitol or White House with torches (and how many of us would it take, marching with torches to get Republicans in Congress to impeach Bush and Cheney?), what do you do when the people treat their government like an episode on TV? We’re passive observers, and apparently we’re fine with having politicians raid the U.S. Treasury and rob our future, our kids and grandkids futures. I’m betting that Americans’ anger will be palpable when the full brunt of Bush’s tax cuts kick in, which will be a couple of years after he leaves the White House. We can only hope that Americans will be smart enough not to fall for the Republicans’ spin then, that it’ll somehow be all the Democrats’ fault.
Bush and Cheney have exposed a great big hole, a failing in our constitution. There are great portions that have been left undefined, intentionally, which anticipated honest people of goodwill would negotiate and compromise for the sake of the united states. The founders didn’t plan for a conspiracy that was at least 20 years in the making (embittered Nixon-era conservatives who schemed to take over all 3 branches of government and control the media). The founders were all about protecting the democracy by making the process of government deliberative and drawn out, with reviews and reassessments, so that justice wasn’t trendy but certain. The founders couldn’t possibly foresee how small changes in laws decades ago, mistakes like the preamble in a Supreme Court decision in 1886 (Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company), would be used as stepping stones by nefarious characters to destroy a government dedicated to freedom and rights for the individual.