Eden Hill Journal

Comments, dreams, stories, and rantings from a middle-aged native of Maine living on a shoestring and a prayer in the woods of Maine. My portion of the family farm is to be known as Eden Hill Farm just because I want to call it that and because that's the closest thing to the truth that I could come up with. If you enjoy what I write, email me or make a comment. If you enjoy Eden Hill, come visit.

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Location: Maine, United States

Saturday, July 21, 2007

A Moment of Weakness

I just suffered a passing moment of weakness. I understand what a filibuster is and that it is a tool used by a minority group to stifle passage of majority-favored legislation. In the US Senate it takes a 3 to 2 majority vote to "end debate" and bring an item to a vote by the entire Senate. Without that 60% majority, a bill cannot be brought to a vote. The bill only needs a simple 50% majority to pass, but it needs a 60% majority before the vote to pass the bill can even take place. This clever little trick is a safeguard that prevents a small majority from dominating the Senate.
The Senate Republicans have been using this little trick recently to block Democratic attempts to appear to pass legislation that would begin the process of winding down the Iraq War. I say "appear to pass legislation" because that's all it is. President Bush would veto it and everybody knows it so the passage of legislation by Democrats in the Senate would be in appearance only. Everybody knows that.
So I'm thinking that what the Democrats are doing by appearing to want to pass this legislation is what they did back before they passed the $100 billion war funding bill this spring. They are giving Republicans in the Senate the opportunity to appear to be standing with President Bush. Political appearances are everything in Washington.
Here's the thing. Are the Democrats trying to amend the Defense Appropriations Bill because they actually want to bring the war to an end knowing full well that President Bush will veto any such efforts, or are they doing it to provoke filibustering by the Republicans?
And if they are doing it to promote filibustering, then how can we lay the blame for the filibusters on the Republicans? Aren't the Democrats participating in this charade just as much as the Republicans are?
When Bush says this is all just politics, he's right-on. This is politics! The objective is clearly to bring to the awareness of the American voters where the various Senators stand on supporting President Bush - nothing more, nothing less.
But then after my brief moment of weakness I realized something else. When President Bush says it is all politics, he says it in a deriding way. Bush appeals to the sentiment that politics is superficial and unnecessary. Susan Collins made some sort of comment that rested on this same sort of logic during the all-nighter this week. Republicans want bi-partisan cooperation, not political theater. What minority party wouldn't want that?
But the truth is that in the end, Republicans will get the legislation they want. Their filibuster power combined with Bush's veto power will ensure that Republicans still control Washington. The only power that Democrats hold in Washington right now is political. Democrats hold enough power to force the Republicans to show their hand. That's just the way the system works. That's politics and if you don't like it, Republicans, then what right do you have to call yourself American? This is democracy under the US Constitution.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Divine Power

It is now official. George W. Bush has declared himself to be the totalitarian executive. TPM reports that President Bush has issued a "Huge new claim of executive privilege" which shields the White House from congressional oversight and legal contempt charges. In other words, at the discretion of the President of the United States, the entire executive branch of government is above the law. Only God has more power than George W. Bush.
While some may be surprised by this and while Republicans just scoff at it since it lines up with power grabs by other recent Republican presidents, I am not surprised by the claim because this is the real meaning behind Bush's "unitary executive" theory. Bush has used this unitary executive argument to support his claims in many many signing statements that no part of the executive branch - and the Justice Department is part of the executive branch - will be used to force the executive branch to enforce the law. Why? Because the entire executive branch is one unit and it won't turn on itself. It will stay true to its singular executive head, the president.
President George W. Bush has broken down all but one avenue for Congressional oversight. He has virtually eliminated the Constitution of the United State with only one exception...
Impeachment

Sunday, July 15, 2007

It's Back

Terrorism is back on the front burner here in America. This summer is a far cry from the fall of 2004 when everything was going Bush's way, when the neo-conservatives were in full control of the government. Remember when Bush gave bin Laden the brush-off in one of his debates with John Kerry in the 2004 presidential race? Now the Senate wants to up the reward on bin Laden to $50 million. Every day now we hear new warnings that al Qaeda is bracing to strike America again.
So the thing is, why? Why the revival of bin Laden? Wasn't he close to death or even dead a year or so back?
Somewhere this week I came across a brief report that the US government had announced a plan for running the government should Washington DC suddenly become inoperative. Was that the result of Putin's visit to Maine? Did that meeting go that badly? Putin announced this week that he's pulling Russia out of the pact with NATO regulating Russia's conventional military force placement in Europe. I guess there must have been a few speed bumps in the road down there in Kennebunkport.
But really, who expects Russia to blow up Washington? Nobody that I know of. That's insane.
I certainly don't.
But I've been saying for some time now that on some level of irrational thought, an attack on Washington can be expected.
From the neo-conservative perspective, that is from the perspective of those who favor Israel in world politics, the worst possible situation in American politics would be for the American people to turn against Zionism and its effects. It goes without saying that the single biggest thorn in the side of Islam is Israel. It was Israel that decades ago responded to Iraq's construction of a nuclear power plant with airstrikes. But since the first Gulf War, it has been America's job to preemptively strike in the Middle East.
It was the neo-conservatives at the Project for the New American Century who said that it would take a new Pearl Harbor to get the American public to support pro-Zionist use of America's wealth and military. The 9/11 terrorist attack served nobody more than it served Israel.
With the virtual mutiny of the American public over Bush's war in Iraq, nobody serves to lose more than the Israeli Zionists if American public opinion turns against the neo-conservative agenda to broaden the war into Iran.
In today's world it is not permissible in public to say these things. Simply pointing out the truth exposes the messenger to charges of anti-Semitism. If you don't believe me, just try it yourself. Try looking at this from the perspective of someone critical of Israel. Try understanding how much all this killing and all this terror is giving the advantage to Israel. Don't even take the next step. Don't try to see that all this makes perfect sense from the perspective of Israel's secret intelligence services who have virtually unlimited financial resources and zero scruples. Who besides Israel has gained anything from all this? Certainly the American people have lost a lot. The people of Iraq have lost a lot. All of Islam is now in tatters or soon will be. But Israel is stronger than ever before, strong enough even to be contemplating air strikes against Iran, potentially even nuclear strikes, if Iran doesn't bow to the Zionist will.
So why this new daily reminder in the US of al-Qaeda? Why this reincarnation of bin Laden?
Because the American public are on the verge of mutiny against the neo-conservatives and George Bush. If we carry out that mutiny, the Zionists will have no choice but to revert to another terror attack against the American people. If the mutiny got out of hand and actually took over the US government by voting out the scum, then what other choice would Zionism have but to take out Washington and take over the government?
Al Qaeda with the bomb? Not likely, not unless someone can secretly supply them with it, someone with a real need to persuade the American public to go hog wild with war against Islam.