Monday, March 16, 2009

Right Wing Hypocrisy 101

With the Rethuglicans desperate to rebuild their suddenly crumbling base in the United States, they seem to be desperately dragging out anything they can ... in this case, it's been Dick Cheney.

An October 23, 2001, memo from Justice Department lawyers John C. Yoo and Robert J. Delahunty said, "First Amendment speech and press rights may also be subordinated to the overriding need to wage war successfully."

Former Vice PresidentCheney also believes, according to these same memos, that the federal government can send troops to burst into the homes of American citizens without a search warrant, despite the Fourth Amendment's protection against such unreasonable searches. He believes that the federal government has the right to arrest an American citizen on American soil and hold him in prison without charges. He believes that the federal government can listen in on your phone conversations without a court order.

Now, think about this for a minute, and reflect on the Conservatives in Canada trying to resurrect unnecessary laws that give the government unprecedented police-state powers in peacetime.

"I worry a lot," he told King, "that they're using the current set of economic difficulties to try to justify a massive expansion in the government, and much more authority for the government over the private sector. I don't think that's good. I don't think that's going to solve the problem."

Set aside the, umm, irony of a guy who is alive, thank God, because of government-provided health care opposing health care for taxpaying Americans. And set aside the hypocrisy of the Bush-Cheney Medicare prescription drug entitlement, the greatest expansion of the federal role in health care since President Lyndon B. Johnson.

Focus instead on Cheney's alarmist rhetoric: "a massive expansion in the government", "much more authority for the government." Cheney is comfortable with a government that has the authority to torture, imprison, censor and kill. Just not a government that has the capacity and compassion to write a health insurance policy or take on Big Oil.

There's a second irony here - and it falls forth from Cheney's own mouth. In "worrying about" an expansion of government under Obama, Cheney fails quite utterly to admit that under Bush II (and Cheney), the government expanded dramatically - in ways that invade people's privacy and fundamental rights such as due process before the law far more negatively than anything that the Obama administration has proposed. Cheney has repeatedly denied many people access to the courts, has invaded their privacy and tortured others. Under Bush II, more happened to expand the reach of law enforcement and the military - aspects of government intrusion into private lives that we really should be worried about.

Consider that Canada's Con$ are pouring money into the military like there's no tomorrow, and want to resurrect laws that expired for good reason. These people take their cues from Bush II/Cheney ...

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