Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Sharks or Asses: The Potential Impeachment of George W. Bush

Posted by Cardozo

That is the question facing Democrats, Bush, when they walk into the chambers of Congress in January as the new majority party. When Nancy Pelosi wakes up in the morning on her first day as Speaker of the House, dons her snappy business suit and casts a final glimpse in the mirror before heading out to change the world, what will she see?

If she sees a shark, Bush, you are in very serious trouble. Sharks, as you know, are attracted to the smell of blood, and yours currently flows from a thousand self-inflicted wounds. If Pelosi does see a shark, you will only have yourself to blame for the inevitable circus sideshow to follow. Well, yourself and the GOP establishment who dramatically lowered the bar for impeachment back in 1998.

Of course, there are other possibilities. Ms. Pelosi may be in no mood for this fight, just yet. Her mirror’s image might present the mighty Donkey: the aptly plodding, moody, stubborn symbol of the Democratic Party. This would be fortunate for you, Bush, because the Donkey would probably rather keep you around, now that the country has seen you without any clothes.

Which begs the question: what should Nancy Pelosi see? As a stateswoman, as a leader in her party, as a citizen and as a human being, what is the right course of action? The stakes couldn’t be higher.

Progressive voices are split on the issue of impeachment. (See here, here, and here for some takes from the liberal blogs.) The question, of course, is strategic rather than substantive, because progressives are rightly united in the belief that adequate causes for impeachment exist, and in plenty. The founders created impeachment to prevent the accumulation of excessive powers by the Executive Branch, which describes, to a tee, your particular brand of high crimes and misdemeanors.

The ramifications of an impeachment battle for the nation are the real issue, and because of this I believe you should stay in office (unless of course, you decide to resign out of contrition, which is just fine). Yes, you have tried, and in many cases succeeded, in obliterating the checks and balances that were erected to avoid tyranny. Yes, I believe you deliberately manipulated the American people into supporting a foolish nation-building scheme. Yes, you have shown utter disregard for laws protecting our cherished civil liberties.

But you have not done so in a vacuum. Your expansion of executive powers happened right before our eyes and, in the case of the Iraq invasion, with the explicit, bipartisan consent of Congress. In so many ways our country was not prepared for 9/11. We are a politically immature nation. This immaturity should be the focus of a national trial in which we the people impeach a select few of our prevailing national ethics. For one, the mythology of “good versus evil” that fosters xenophobia among the public and diplomatic impatience among leaders of both parties. For another, the “look out for #1” mantra that impedes any meaningful national dialogue about political issues.

These cultural idiosyncrasies, more than your perfidious power plays, Bush, are ultimately responsible for the mess we are in. And when Nancy Pelosi and other congressional Democrats look in their mirrors come January, I hope they see themselves not as sharks and not as donkeys, but as leaders who will turn the mirror back on all of us and usher in a national day of reckoning to answer the question: how did we get to this point?


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PeterAtLarge said...

Good post today, Cardozo. I have been back an forth on impeachment: at one moment, a couple of months ago, I felt that it might be the ONLY way to get behind the secrecy of every aspect of the Bush administration's policies. From today's perspective, though, and following the election, I'm inclined to think that the Democrats now have the opportunity to draw back that curtain WITHOUT the trauma of impeachment.

Cardozo said...

Yes, I agree that drawing back the curtain is essential. Otherwise the presidential excesses will carry over into the next administration, be it Republican or Democrat. Power corrupts, and all that.

I just hope that it's done through the proper channels (Waxman's govt. oversight committee, for example) and that something is done to reduce the scale of the ensuing media circus.

Anonymous said...

Democrats are fully supporting an upcoming war with Iran- google: Iran Freedom support act

wake up and smell the coffee- the entire "War on terror" is a sham, after the cold war ended the mi-complex needed a new enemy, and 9/11 provided that- how convenient.

They Lied to start a war, could they have lied about 9/11 too? you betcha. it's just so scary most don't want to even consider that some elements of our own government are evil enough to lie to start a war for profit, or kill their own citizens for the justification... but it's all been proven 100 times over (google: wtc7, 911 ommission commission)

this information has been presented to all Congressmembers, but they all refuse to act. Complicity. Once again- too scary to consider, so most sheep go back to sleep.

Carly said...

Guys: If anybody wants more insight on the way things work, see the documentary, "Who Killed the Electric Car". There's new insight there for any level of observer.

Donna said...

Dearest Mr. Cardozo,

I have always known you were an amazing writer, thus I was no surprised at the quality of this piece. Both informative and poetic, you show a sensitivity to the human condition as well as a savvy political mind. You remind me that there is room for humanism in politics. Keep up the good work!

PeterAtLarge said...

Carly, I have "Electric Car" on my Netflix list already. Sometimes you read my mind. Cheers, PaL

KB said...

Anonymous -

You have GOT to be kidding - or half way into some conspiracy "novel." Sure, our own government destroyed the twin towers and killed its own citizens - because they are just about "evil" enough. Good insight. The kind our dear president uses regularly, I think. It is scary indeed that you have adopted the mindless jargon of the very people you are bashing. Maybe you should drink some coffee and dig deeper into the issues - "Good and evil" is just too simple to explain any of us - Even your beloved leaders of the US of A.

And hopefully, so is shark and donkey.

PK said...

KB... You might try getting into this one .. http://physics911.net/