Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Gonzales & Hatch - Empiricum

A new TV action series?
No. It is the latest vaudeville duo now doing their acts in our nation's capital. Their performance is so poor that they will not even get nominated for next year's Golden Globe award.

Alberto Gonzales, the Attorney General, a former counsel to GWBush and a Harvard Law School alumnus, and Orrin Hatch, a former Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and was once mentioned as a possible nominee for a justiceship in the US Supreme Court, both appeared yesterday in Larry King's never-so-dull TV talk show defending Bush's constitutional transgressions.

Gonzales & Hatch both hold the view that Bush's domestic spying program is within the law and the Constitution anchoring their arguments on the "inherent power" of the President as commander-in-chief and a 9/11 congressional resolution.

This argument is ridiculous if not laughable!

Since when did the National Security Agency become a part of the "armed forces of the United States" that the President is their commander-in-chief? Even granting just for the sake of argument that the congressional "resolution" authorized Bush to use such "necessary force" to deal with "our enemies" responsible for the 9/11 attack, is an unlawful surveillance a "necessary force"? Or does the Resolution simply refers to MILITARY ACTION? Most importantly, since when can the US Constitution be amended simply by IMPLICATION? By the word of mouth of the vaudeville duo? What happened to the right and duty of the States to ratify any amendment to the Constitution?

It is respectfully submitted that the Constitution should be narrowly construed in accordance with its letter and spirit. In case of any "conflict" between several provisions, the matter should be resolved in favor of rights of the individual citizens for whom the Constitution is established in the first place. The Constitution was established to prevent and forestall the assumption of power by a monarch... a tyrant! Thus, it established a principle of separation of powers and checks and balances FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE CITIZENRY. And these principles will endure over the onslaught of a power grabbing executive.

It is sad when Gonzales & Hatch, with their brilliant legal minds, simply reduce themselves as spin masters and apologists for the Bush administration!


Empiricum said...

Gonzales lost another one:


Add this to the growing list of Gonzales' erroneous interpretations on the law and the Constitution such as the Abu Ghraib, torture, Guantanamo, executive privilege, enemy combatant, and the result is a convoluted legal mind of Bush.

The Interpretive Rule reminds me of another yet upcoming controversial "Signing Statement" legal theory contrived by Gonzales and other Bush apologists. When the torture ban sponsored by McCain was signed into law by Bush, a "Signing Statement" was issued by the White House the portent of which runs exactly against the spirit and purpose of the McCain law. The "Signing Statement" was designed by Bush lawyers to interpret the newly-signed law. Again, since when and under what authority does the President have the power to INTERPRET the law? Coincidentally, Orrin Hatch also holds the view that a "Signing Statement" has the force of a law in the interpretation and construction of a statute.

This power grabbing is becoming truly unbelievable... but it is true, and happening right before our naked eyes!

In the Gonzales case, note who dissented. Is this a new alignment in the Court? No wonder the conservatives want Alito in there... right now!

Empiricum said...

To those who doubt or quietly disagree with the proposition espoused in my foregoing article that the Constitution was established FOR THE PEOPLE and not for the PNAC, the vaudeville duo and the Bush crowd, simply read the Preamble:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Therefore, this talk and proclaimed agenda by Dick "gfy" Cheney to establish an all-powerful President is purely nonsense and utterly unconstitutional !

Any Donkey said...

A substantial portion of the populace simply tune out the debate when leading voices include Gore and Clinton.

Empiricum said...

That's probably true.

But frankly, my dear Any Donkey, I'd rather hear (not that I listen) old voices like Al's and Hillary's (except for that "plantation" remark which I deem uncalled-for) than spinning voices from Scott McClellan and Ron Christie and their ilks whose arguments are totally devoid of logic and shaky legal / constitutional grounds.

It is an irrefutable fact that this nation is deeply divided -- a rift that is furthered by the guy with a narrow aortic chamber that fits only the 1%.

Ideally, this nation needs a true leader with a new face, a golden heart and a mind with pure vision (although he/she might not be able to unify us all...completely.) It does not matter if he/she comes from the left, the right or center. Do we have him/her right now? Will he/she emerge from the ranks of the Governors or from the business sector?

When the domestic spying investigation heats up in Congress and the tentacles of the Abramoff corruption scandal show who are in its grasp, this clamor for change and reform will become more resonant and compelling that perhaps even a third-party candidate might again become viable like in the case of John Anderson a few decades back.

But whoever that person may be, he will simply serve as a temporary caretaker like in the case of Pres. Ford in the aftermath of Watergate.

That's fine with me.

Empiricum said...

After crushing to pieces the "legal and constitutional" arguments of the Bush apologists and spin masters, this topic needs revisiting to deal with their "we are at war" political argument to justify their intrusion on the constitutional rights of American citizens.

As a starter, the question that needs asking is: WHOSE WAR IS IT ANYWAY? Or perhaps the better question is: WHAT MOTIVATED BUSH AND THE PNAC TO GO TO WAR IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN? To go after those responsible for 9/11 as the apologists may claim? But the fact of the matter is that not one Iraqi or Afghan was implicated in that attack. Change of regime? If that is the case, then why is Bush and his reconstructors along with their military escorts still in Iraq and Afghanistan? Is it not a fact that puppet governments are already in place in both countries? Or is it because the oil pipelines and the billions of dollars of taxpayers' money are far too good of incentives to forego?

Ah, the "war on terror" argument. Do Bush and his minions really believe that if the top leadership of Al-Qaeda is totally annihilated from the face of the earth that the "war on terror" is won? For as long as the United States continues with its aggessive and arrogant foreign policies along with its neo-colonialism and imperialistic ways, both militarily and economically, the United States will continue to see the shadows of terrorism! In that case, this "war on terror" will have no end and that the civil liberties of American citizens will be trampled upon through eternity that we might as well throw away that document called "The Constitution of the United States" and start practicing our salute to the Chief Executive!

By the way, did not someone say a couple of years ago, "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!"? Was that a lie?

Empiricum said...

Gonzales' "official" Response:


My Rebuttal in the simplest of words: GONZALES IS GRASPING STRAWS !

Gonzales introduces a new defense: "The History and Tradition Defense." Al Qaeda is not based on history and tradition. Rather, it is a modern version of "guerilla warfare" that results when protagonists are not of the same equal footing, militarily speaking.


I reiterate my views and rest my case!

Empiricum said...

Revisiting this topic hopefully for the final time:

---Firstly, the typo "their" should read as "there."

---Secondly, it seems improper for Gonzales to use the office of the Attorney General and its seal to defend and explain his actions made when he was Bush's White House counsel. He should now appoint an independent counsel to investigate the matter without fear or favor. Gonzales cannot investigate himself.

Anonymous said...

And then their was Google... Might make the NSA's spying look like childs play! Will this administration stop at NOTHING to invade our privacy. Bill

Empiricum said...

You're exactly right, Bill. (Is this The "WH" Bill? Ooops.. that will not make yourself "anonymous".. will it?)

This Gonzales v. Google case is the latest demonstration of the "creativity" of the plaintiff. Matching his "creative" nature, I dare say that, in addition to the privacy issue, his program is UNCONSTITUTIONAL as it chills our First Amendment rights. Arguably, for one to be able to effectively speak and express his thoughts, he needs to "Google" !

Alberto, I now christen thee: "SNOOPY GONZALES" !!! And, from now on you can only ride on your pony. (with my advance apology to Any Donkey.)

Empiricum said...

BTW, as the law might require, I need to make a disclosure: I am a shareholder of Google THROUGH MY MUTUAL FUND. Are you reading this, Mr. Alito? (You should have recused yourself, Sir!)

Empiricum said...

I just found this link which affirms and elaborates my views on this topic:


I suspect that it was Snoopy Gonzales who commissioned John Yoo for an opinion that would give a stamp of approval to his own and presented it to Bush as "legal authority" on the matter.

If people in power would rather seek guidance from a self-professed constitutional law "expert" like Yoo (no! not me!) than from proven EXPERTS like Lawrence Tribe, then this country is going to the dogs !

And now we are in this mess!

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