Thursday, January 05, 2006

re: Usurpers, Lew Rockwell, Etc.

----- Original Message -----

Sent: Friday, December 30, 2005 12:16 AM
Subject: Re: The Usurpers of Our Freedoms

Dear Dean Velvel:

Excellent essay. I am sad to say you are correct about so much of what has happened to our country.

Thank you for writing it.

Glenn Feldman
Associate Professor
University of Alabama at Birmingham

----- Original Message -----

Sent: Thursday, December 29, 2005 8:11 AM
Subject: A suggestion in your recent Lew Rockwell article on reporter protection

You suggested that reporters et al. should have privilege to protect their sources when those are blowing the whistle on government misbehaviour, but not when those sources are using the media to further the misbehaviour. That's a nice idea, but how can it be applied without itself undercutting the principle at issue? For, if the sources are demonstrably the latter sort, there is no need to waive the privilege to get at them, and on the other hand if it is uncertain in advance which they are, there is no mechanism that could be used to waive the privilege which could not also be misused to get at the former sort, for whom the privilege is necessary.

The only ethically sound approach I have come across is to place the dilemma on the reporters and make them ethically aware of it as part of their career growth. That is, that they should be liable to contempt of court or whatever, and also liable if - after breaching confidentiality
- they could not show good cause. That places them in a situation of damned if you do and damned if you don't, but in turn that leaves them with no determining pressure but their own consciences. And, after all, as the only people with full knowledge, they are the only ones able to make an informed decision; they cannot abdicate that responsibility except to an uninformed person, for the very fact of sharing the information is itself the breach they are being asked to perform.

Yours sincerely,


----- Original Message -----

Sent: Wednesday, December 28, 2005 3:20 PM
Subject: Usurpers Article


Unfortunately, the framers assumed that the competing branches of government would continue to act independently and would do their job. What we see now is the well-planned convergence of three factors which have led us to our current peril.

First, the judiciary has been co-opted by the executive’s effective long-ranged plan to stack the court with conservative and consciousless mouthpieces intent on creating a dictator-like president –who benefactors are the military complex and wealthiest Americans and their corporations.

Second, Congress has completely abrogated its responsibility in overseeing the executive. The same Congress that issued over 1500 subpoenas to President Clinton in 8 years has issued 3 to President Bush in 5. The disparity leads one to believe that Congressional oversight, once acknowledged being very important during the Clinton years, has become irrelevant in the Bush years. Whose action, impeachers, was more dangerous? Mr. Clinton’s affair with Ms. Lewinski which resulted in lies about a personal matter or Mr. Bush’s creation of a secret police force which has resulted in rendition, torture and untold violations of U.S. and International law? As a former Republican, I can only say that this current bunch of Congressional Republicans is more interested being members of the Party than in following the traditional values on which the party was based. Bush acts with the knowledge that there is no consequence for his illegal actions.

Finally, none of the three branches of government could sustain this bastardization without the acquiescence of the people. The public is compliant because it is uneducated, uninterested or ill-informed. On all counts, the current media has abrogated its job of educating, raising awareness and informing the public. One only needs to watch an hour of Fox news to understand that ownership of the media by wealthiest Americans and their corporations is disastrous to the republic. The attacks by this administration on the public media, viz., Tomlinson’s appointment to oversee PBS, is as dangerous a usurpation of liberty as the renditions and torture.

None of the foregoing is by chance. Left unchecked the current course will lead to the destruction of our democracy as we know it.

----- Original Message -----

Sent: Wednesday, December 28, 2005 7:02 PM
Subject: Your column at Lew Rockwell...

“…should not confirm to the Supreme Court a man who will not pledge to oppose this usurpation, this destruction of the constitutional plan…”

Alas, I fear the mere presence of these stories in the “mainstream” indicates not their uniqueness, but rather the uncontrollable, widespread corruption that is the US government.

Under such reality, what, pray tell, becomes of us?

West Palm Beach

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