May 30, 2006

Never mind George, you're only breaking laws passed by a representative government anyhow..

This may in fact be old news, and I may in fact be overusing the blog on its first day, but hey, I'm nothing if not enthusiastic.

According to the Boston Globe, Bush has quietly asserted his right to breach more than 750 laws as commander–in–cheif of the military..

Hmmm, well probably just small bureaucratic laws to streamline the administration. Slightly worrying, but nothing to get our knickers in a twist…

Alas, no. Included is the law passed that bans torture. That's right! In one of these presidential "signing statements", George declared that he personally can order torture if he "believes" it will prevent a terrorist attack or in order to protect that bland notion of national security.

The article says the president has not vetoed any bill that has passed through congress, but instead has lavish signing ceremonies and heaps praise onto whoever wrote it. And then,...

"after the media and the lawmakers have left the White House, Bush quietly files ''signing statements" — official documents in which a president lays out his legal interpretation of a bill for the federal bureaucracy to follow when implementing the new law."

Examples of these "signing statements" can be found here

One example caught my eye:

March 9: Justice Department officials must give reports to Congress by certain dates on how the FBI is using the USA Patriot Act to search homes and secretly seize papers.

Bush's signing statement: The president can order Justice Department officials to withhold any information from Congress if he decides it could impair national security or executive branch operations.

If anything you've got to admire the audacity.

- 4 comments by 2 or more people Not publicly viewable

  1. That's actually quite scary. Why aren't the American public making more of a fuss?!

    30 May 2006, 18:26

  2. People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.

    Benjamin Franklin

    30 May 2006, 23:21

  3. Christopher Rossdale

    A few weeks ago the High Court ruled that the displaced indigenous people of Diego Garcia – removed by the British in order to provide a military base for the USA – should be allowed to return.
    Then, quietly, the queen was made to sign a statement reversing this, alongside some smaller routine signing statements.

    It's not just America where the shit's heating up.

    Pilger's Article

    31 May 2006, 20:47

  4. Christopher Rossdale

    Pilger's article – about the Diego Garcia thing, obviously!

    31 May 2006, 20:48

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