The Lady Speaks

T. Jefferson vs. G. Bush II

While King George IV and his minions are busy telling us that everything they do is just perfectly fine, and in accordance with Constitutional provisions…blah, blah, blah… I thought I’d compare their theories of government with those of the guy who actually wrote the Constitution.

*

“The most effectual engines for [pacifying a nation] are the public papers… [A despotic] government always [keeps] a kind of standing army of newswriters who, without any regard to truth or to what should be like truth, [invent] and put into the papers whatever might serve the ministers. This suffices with the mass of the people who have no means of distinguishing the false from the true paragraphs of a newspaper.”

–Thomas Jefferson to G. K. van Hogendorp, Oct. 13, 1785

From the Independent Online (UK):

May 29, 2006

Federal authorities are actively investigating dozens of American television stations for broadcasting items produced by the Bush administration and major corporations, and passing them off as normal news. Some of the fake news segments talked up success in the war in Iraq, or promoted the companies’ products.

Investigators from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) are seeking information about stations across the country after a report produced by a campaign group detailed the extraordinary extent of the use of such items. […]

*

“The President is bound to stop at the limits prescribed by our Constitution and law to the authorities in his hands, [and this] would apply in an occasion of peace as well as war.

–Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, 1806.

From McClatchy Washington Bureau:

Jan. 06, 2006

President Bush agreed with great fanfare last month to accept a ban on torture, but he later quietly reserved the right to ignore it, even as he signed it into law.

Acting from the seclusion of his Texas ranch at the start of New Year’s weekend, Bush said he would interpret the new law in keeping with his expansive view of presidential power. He did it by issuing a bill-signing statement – a little-noticed device that has become a favorite tool of presidential power in the Bush White House.

In fact, Bush has used signing statements to reject, revise or put his spin on more than 500 legislative provisions. Experts say he has been far more aggressive than any previous president in using the statements to claim sweeping executive power – and not just on national security issues.

[snip]

The White House says its authority stems from the Constitution, but dissenters say that view ignores the Constitution’s careful balance of powers between branches of government. […]

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“I said to [President Washington] that if the equilibrium of the three great bodies, Legislative, Executive and Judiciary, could be preserved, if the Legislature could be kept independent, I should never fear the result of such a government; but that I could not but be uneasy when I saw that the Executive had swallowed up the Legislative branch.”

–Thomas Jefferson: The Anas, 1792

From the Associated Press:

June 27, 2006

The White House on Tuesday defended President Bush’s frequent use of special statements that claim authority to limit the effects of bills he signs, saying the statements help him uphold the Constitution and defend national security
[snip]

It’s a challenge to the plain language of the Constitution,” said Arlen Specter, a Republican whose Senate Judiciary Committee opened hearings on the issue. “There is a sense that the president has taken signing statements far beyond the customary purview.”

[snip]

“Even if there is modest increase, let me just suggest that it be viewed in light of current events and Congress’ response to those events,” said lawyer Michelle Boardman. “The significance of legislation affecting national security has increased markedly since Sept. 11.”

[snip]

Specter and his allies maintain that Bush is trying an end-run around the veto process. In his presidency’s sixth year, Bush has yet to issue a single veto, which could be overridden with a two-thirds majority in each house.

“The president is not required to,” Boardman said.

“Of course he’s not if he signs the bill,” Specter snapped back.

*

“Mankind soon learn to make interested uses of every right and power which they possess or may assume. The public money and public liberty, intended to have been deposited with three branches of magistracy but found inadvertently to be in the hands of one only, will soon be discovered to be sources of wealth and dominion to those who hold them; distinguished, too, by this tempting circumstance: that they are the instrument as well as the object of acquisition. With money we will get men, said Caesar, and with men we will get money.”

–Thomas Jefferson: Notes on Virginia Q.XIII, 1782.

Excerpts from: The State-by-State GOP Scandal Scorecard at the Wayne Madsen Report:

US Sen. Ted Stevens (AK) – Recipient of contributions from Abramoff

Sen. Jon Kyl (AZ) – Recipient of contributions from Abramoff-connected Indian casino interests

US Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham (CA) – Probed for bribery regarding financial ties with and favors for defense firm MZM. Pleaded guilty to tax evasion, conspiracy, Nov. 28, 2005.

Jack Abramoff, GOP lobbyist

Michael Scanlon, former chief of staff to Tom DeLay – Being probed for involvement in Indian casino scandal with Abramoff, Kidan, and DeLay. Indicted Nov. 18, 2005 for conspiracy to defraud Indian tribes. Pleaded guilty Nov. 21.

Tony Rudy, former aide to Tom DeLay

Mitchell Wade, former President of MZM – Pleaded guilty on Feb. 24, 06 to contract fraud and bribery involving GOP Reps. Duke Cunningham, Virgil Goode, and Katherine Harris and Defense Department contracts. Agrees to cooperate with prosecutors.

House Speaker Dennis Hastert (IL) – Probed for accepting money from Turkey. Also investigated for receiving money from Abramoff.

US Rep. Dan Burton (IN) – Recipient of contributions from Abramoff

US Rep. Candice Miller (MI) – Investigated by House Ethics Committee for accepting campaign contributions in return for her yes vote on the 2004 Medicare bill.

US Rep. Roy Blunt, House Majority Leader (MO) – Investigated for trading illegal PAC money with DeLay through Blunt’s Rely on Your Beliefs Fund. Received Indian casino money from tribes represented by Abramoff.

US Sen. Trent Lott (MS) – Received funds from casino Indian tribes represented by Abramoff

Sen. Elizabeth Dole (NC) – Recipient of campaign funds from Mitchell Wade, MZM

US Rep. Bob Ney (OH) – Being probed for involvement with Abramoff, Kidan, and DeLay, Indian casino money laundering. Recipient of contributions from Abramoff and Kidan. Indictment may be imminent. Recipient of campaign funds from Mitchell Wade (MZM).

US Sen. Bill Frist (TN) – Under Securities and Exchange Commission investigation for insider trading on his Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) stock

US Rep. Tom DeLay, [former] House Majority Leader (TX) – Probed for campaign finance fraud, ties to Abramoff/Kidan, Saipan sweat shops. Grand Jury, Travis County prosecutor, and House Ethics Committee probing DeLay. Indicted by Travis County District Attorney for 1 count of criminal conspiracy and 2 counts of money laundering. Arrested and booked at Harris County jail October 20, 2005. Recipient of contributions from Abramoff. Conspiracy to commit money laundering and money laundering charges still stand after Texas Judge dropped the one count of criminal conspiracy on December 5, 2005.

US Rep. Sam Johnson (TX) – Misused his House Ways and Means Committee position to get the non-profit Texans for Public Justice audited by the IRS in retaliation for their investigation of Tom DeLay‘s TRMPAC and ARMPAC illegal corporate donations.

BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE!! (so many, many, many more)

Go to Wayne’s site (link above) and check out the whole list. It’s mind-boggling.

*

“Unless the mass retains sufficient control over those entrusted with the powers of their government, these will be perverted to their own oppression, and to the perpetuation of wealth and power in the individuals and their families selected for the trust.”

–Thomas Jefferson to M. van der Kemp, 1812

*

** Jefferson quotes from: http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/jefferson/quotations

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July 3, 2006 - Posted by | Bush, Cheney, Congress, Constitution, Crime, Culture of Corruption, Government, Law, Politics, Protest, Republicans, Scandals, White House

5 Comments »

  1. […] T. Jefferson vs. G. Bush II […]

    Pingback by How can I learn to express my feelings and not beat around the bush? » NiaMGordon | July 3, 2006 | Reply

  2. I could be wrong, but I’m guessing Georgie doesn’t like Jerfferson much…..

    Comment by QuestionGirl | July 4, 2006 | Reply

  3. Probably not. Of course, that’s assuming Georgie knows who Jefferson is.

    Comment by PA_Lady | July 4, 2006 | Reply

  4. Bush thinks Jefferson was the father of The Jeffersons. The television version…

    Comment by thepoetryman | July 5, 2006 | Reply

  5. Ahhh – that explains a lot!

    Comment by PA_Lady | July 5, 2006 | Reply


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