| Hi, my name is Rob Kailey, and I am an addict. Less than 2 weeks after telling myself that I was done with the website FireDogLake, I am about to post a link to that website. (The "pay for membership and Jane's manicures" model of blogging I find truly repugnant.) However, being an addict, I read a diary over there this afternoon which peaked my interest a great deal.
David Swanson pens a diary titled "Is Obama Even Worse Than Bush?" Provocative, no? Like an addict, I clicked the link expecting to find another PUMA-Freeper mash of debilitating disappointment. That part is actually in the comments. But David's post is indeed provocative, and actually worth a read. What he lays out is a case for the impeachment of President Obama. I don't agree with much of it, but it's absolutely worth your time to read it. So go do that.
Here's his deal. He argues that the Unitary Executive has become extra-legal, beyond the law, and that those powers once accepted will never be given up. I agree. Here's where I show that not only am I an addict blogger, I'm a bad blogger. I don't meticulously catalog of tag my posts, and I have no index file of my comments. So, please trust me on this, and hopefully some of the longer term members will validate. Back in late 2007, early 2008, when I was arguing even at this site with right-wingers, there was great concern on my part about Chimpy's power grabs. In the debate about FISA renewal, I continually asked our rightward compatriots "Do you really want Barack, John or Hillary to have those powers?"
That's really what it boils down to. Powers granted become the norm, and are used and not given up. I had hope (is that trademarked?) that Obama would actually give up some of that Executive power. I had none that Clinton would, and I wrote as much at the time, born out by Secretary Clinton's actions over the last several weeks. And now we see the truth of it; No President will give up power once attained. That isn't surprising. It also isn't cause for a freak out. It is what it is.
So, Swanson's call for impeachment actually has teeth. The President has and is using powers that under scrutiny could be illegal. I was attracted to his argument because he posts about the position and the situation, not the man. That is important to keep in mind. Ultimately, I disagree with him based on some assumptions he makes concerning motivation (a true failure of the Professional Left), and the message that such conveys to the American people. Swanson calls for a "true" democratic republic. I concur. Swanson's argument relies on claims that the President is much of a figurehead, our defacto King, much as the founders saw the position. Again, I concur. But if that's the case, then impeaching the President won't fix what's broken in our representation. The Presidential office is taking power from somewhere, and that would be Congress. So fixing things? That would involve fixing Congress. Yes? It could well be argued, and has on the blogs, that it would also involve fixing our media, our social structures and most of all, our economy. Impeaching the President would assist none of those efforts, and in fact would hinder them all.
The racial issue still hangs out there. Many Americans are asking why so much bitterness is spewed at our black President, and many Americans are asking for impeachment because we have a black President. As much as Swanson wants to remove 'the man' from 'the office', you really can't. An impeachment is not taking back power for the branch which should hold such. It is taking away the position of a man, who, to date, is still well favored.
Still, I find that diary intriguing, and present it to you folks here. What do you think?