Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Pre-1776, Indeed

By Cassandra D

I want to throw my arms around Senator Russ Feingold (D-Wisconsin) and give him a big smooch on the cheek for saying what needs to be said. Here's an excerpt:

...this administration reacts to anyone who questions this illegal program by saying that those of us who demand the truth and stand up for our rights and freedoms have a pre-9/11 view of the world.

In fact, the President has a pre-1776 view of the world.

Our Founders lived in dangerous times, and they risked everything for freedom. Patrick Henry said, "Give me liberty or give me death." The President's pre-1776 mentality is hurting America. It is fracturing the foundation on which our country has stood for 230 years. The President can't just bypass two branches of government, and obey only those laws he wants to obey. Deciding unilaterally which of our freedoms still apply in the fight against terrorism is unacceptable and needs to be stopped immediately.

Read the whole thing here.


At 10:10 PM, Anonymous Red Dirt said...

1. Sorry, Cassandra, but because of decades of NEA-union driven neglect of public schools, most Americans have no idea what Feingold is referring to. Watch Leno once in awhile and you'll know I'm telling it true.

2. I just can't seem to get something out my memory: It's that image of two people holding hands as they plunged to their deaths from the heights of the Twin Towers. I apologize if that's too unsophisticated and post-9/11 in my thinking. It just that, well, it only changed EVERYTHING.

3. Wasn't Cassandra the figure in Greek mythology who foresaw the destruction of Troy? If that's the allusion you're going for, you're about five years too late. The disaster already happened. Now we're picking up the pieces and moving on with reality.

Can you dig? Groovy. Because you don't have to be liberal, conservative or anything else to deal. It's just the real world.

And for some of us, it didn't take riots over a cartoon to open our eyes to the way things are. The altered Manhattan skyline easily accomplished that.

Come to think of it, there's a cosmic postmodern, heavily ironic joke in there somewhere ... that it took a CARTOON for some people to wake up to the reality of Islamo-fascism.

Golly, you'd think 3,000 dead innocents in the Big Apple would have been enough.

At 10:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And as long as we're making historical references that no average current high school student would understand because of declining public education standards, here's an oldie but a goodie... "The choice is not between order and liberty. It is between liberty with order and anarchy without either. There is danger that, if the court does not temper its doctrinaire logic with a little practical wisdom, it will convert the constitutional Bill of Rights into a suicide pact." ~U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson

At 10:29 PM, Anonymous Red Dirt said...

And as long as we're going to get all histrionic and suggest that the Bush administration is the next coming of the Third Reich (the same tired fear-mongering that "progressives" have been spouting since the Eisenhower administration) ... let's take a deep breath and remember that just YESTERDAY a bunch of old gasbags (including a man who was a miserable failure as president) got up to trash a sitting president at a funeral, while he was sitting there. And he had to take it. Does anyone think that sort of thing would fly in an Orwellian dictatorship? How would that sort of thing have gone over in, oh I don't know, Syria or Iran or North Korea, for example?

A little logic sort of cuts through, don't it?

At 7:52 AM, Blogger Cassandra D said...

So, Red Dirt, you would give up the rights and form of governmnet that so many of the signers of the Declaration of Independence DIED for because you are afraid of terrorists? They would be ashamed.

At 8:44 AM, Anonymous Red Dirt said...

Yeah, that's exactly [NOT] it, Cassandra. As usual you [DIDN'T] hit the nail on the head. The continual conflation and fallacies are what I would be ashamed about.

At 9:06 AM, Anonymous Brett said...

OK -- so Sen. Feingold, who I guess it's fair to say represents an opinion held by many, says that for the President to do what the President is doing breaks the law. The President, on the other hand, who probably also represents an opinion held by many, says that what he's doing doesn't break the law.

If I accept Sen. Feingold's view. then I definitely agree that is surveillance is a danger to our nation's freedom. If I don't accept it, then I disagree, and accept the tactic as a legal one needed to combat terrorism.

The rest -- the "pre-1776 view of the world" -- is blatherskite and spin designed to remove the discussion from the realm of reasoned exchange and thus make it that much more difficult to sort out a solution or an answer. Which is precisely what he says the President's "pre 9/11" rhetoric does, and so I find myself not listening to either of them. Ah, leadership.

At 9:57 AM, Blogger Conrad Spencer said...

1. The point isn’t the eavesdropping, but doing so without a warrant. There exists a secret court to grant such warrants, and current law allows law enforcement to start the eavesdropping when the need arises and obtain a warrant after the fact, yet the Bush administration finds even this slight deference to civil liberties too restrictive. Cassandra is right that, in his unwillingness to accept any sort of oversight or accountability (to use some favorite conservative terms) Bush looks more like a monarch and less like the leader of a free republic.

2. Since when did the average American’s knowledge of history have anything to do with its factuality

3. To add to the historical references, Ben Franklin said that “Those who would give up essential liberty for a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

At 10:44 AM, Blogger Cassandra D said...

One of the things I find interesting, Brett, is that reasoned debate has been absent in our country for the last few years. We seem as a nation utterly incapable of rationality. This is particularly true when, when anyone voices objections to the adminstration's views or policies, they are branded by the administration and its supporters as somehow coddling terrorists and being unpatriotic and mired in an old and irrelevant mindset. Some have even equated dissent and discussion with treason. Their codeword for all of that is "pre-9/11." I agree that that is unhelpful spin, but if it is left as the ONLY spin, isn't that harmful? My hope is that the shocking charge of being "pre 9/11" will be countered by the other charge of being "pre-1776." Perhaps if our population is spun in BOTH directions, for a change, we will end up back in the middle where more rational minds might prevail. People need to understand that there are grave threats to our country on both extremes.

At 11:59 AM, Anonymous Brett said...

We'd think that a counter-spin should help balance us, because that's what physics tells us happens in the real world.
Unfortunately, the real world seems to have little impact on political rhetoric, and I've found myself tuning out both sides as they continue to talk past each other. Plus. there's always the danger of doing what Sen. Feingold has done and say something that spins smart while being stupid.
The opposition to the wiretaps stems, I understand, from the belief that without warrants, such surveillance violates the fourth amendment. That amendment dates from 1791, not 1776. The branches of government Sen. Feingold refers to date from the adoption of the US Constitution, which happened in 1788.
But those dates don't resonate like "1776" does. Does a "pre-1776" mentality mean that the President has "excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our Frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions," or another of the 27 charges made against King George in the Declaration of Independence?
I don't know the relevant laws well enough to know if Sen. Feingold's view is right or if the President's view is right. I believe that the President has used the "pre 9/11" phrase often enough it's become little more than a red flag waved in front of my desire-to-be-safe bull, in order to get me to charge ahead in the direction he seems to want.
If Sen. Feingold thinks the best way to counter that is by waving a red flag in front of my nobody-takes-away-my-liberty bull, more power to him, even if I happen to think that's not the way to proceed. But he needs to get his dates right.

At 3:04 PM, Blogger Cassandra D said...

A simpler way to view the "1776" reference is as an anti-monarchy reference.

At 8:40 PM, Anonymous Sigmund Spinoza said...

--I want to throw my arms around Senator Russ Feingold (D-Wisconsin) and give him a big smooch on the cheek for saying what needs to be said.--

Check with Chase's sister. She and Russ are tight as ticks and she can probably arrange it for you.


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