Thursday, July 26, 2007
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A post in which I send my readers on a blog hunt
President George W. Bush and New York Governor Eliot Spitzer both seem way too fond of executive privilege.
Bush, of course, has gone so far as to order Harriet Miers and Josh Bolten ignore Congressional subpoenas. The AP story sums up the state of play:
Miers' testimony emerged as the battleground for a broader scuffle between the White House and Congress over the limits of executive privilege. Presidents since the nation's founding have sought to protect from the prying eyes of Congress the advice given them by advisers, while Congress has argued that it is charged by the U.S. Constitution with conducting oversight of the executive branch.Miers and Bolten now face possible contempt of Congress charges.
Now we turn to Eliot Spitzer. Danny Hakim summarizes the state of play in the New York Times:
Gov. Eliot Spitzer vowed on Wednesday to fight any State Senate inquiry into his administrationís internal operations, even as Republican senators were laying the groundwork for an investigation that could lead to subpoenas of top officials.Assignment to blog readers: is there anyone in the blogosphere partisan enough to defend one of these claims of executive privilege but attacked the other? posted by Dan on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM
One comment: The partisans will mostly complain about one and completely ignore the other. Why bother defending it when you can just "paint the mountain pink and put up an SEP field"
The way it usually works, in my experience, is that the partisan blogger will:
(1) Attack an opposing politician for bad behavior
(2) Initially keep quiet about the bad behavior of a friendly politician
(3) Criticize hostile bloggers for hypocrisy when they do the same thing in reverse.
So these days, we get conservative bloggers accusing liberals of hypocrisy for condemning the perjury of Scooter Libby but not of Bill Clinton. And we get liberal bloggers accusing conservatives of hypocrisy for condemning Clinton but not Libby.
That way, the blogger gets to pretend to believe in even-handedness without actually criticizing his own guy.posted by: Wilson on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM [permalink]
It is also much easier to find people who express fondness for the New Deal and President Franklin Roosevelt, but criticize Bush's abuse of executive power (amongst other things).
While I am no fan of Bush, he never attempted to do anything like this:
Bush's firing of federal attorneys kind of pales in comparison to this blatant attempt to have Democratic control of all three branches of government...posted by: Jake on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM [permalink]
Does the NY state constitution have the same Article II structure and history as the US Constitution? For example, the Texas governor's role is much weaker constitutionally than the US president, and it wouldn't shock me at all to find out that the Texas governor had much weaker executive privilege claims. Maybe the NY governor has a stronger position than POTUS (the NYC mayor certainly has amazing powers). So it may be possible to distinguish the cases legally.posted by: srp on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM [permalink]
Well, I'll say Bush has never misused state resources to spy on a political opponent. That's Nixon territory.
Also, Spitzer's moves were entirely partisan and political - to undermine a political opponent. Which, incidentally, also explains much (though not all) of Congress' interest in the judicial goings on of the Bush administration. Both are political stunts, meant to serve a partisan purpose. The Bush administration is trying to protect its staff and former staff from exactly that.
So, sure - call me partisan. Disregard my criticism of the Bush administration on a whole host of issues, and my criticism of Republicans in Congress on many other issues. If being partisan means hating political stunts and political sideshows, then I'm ok with that.posted by: Dan on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM [permalink]
The passage "partisan enough to defend one of these claims of executive privilege but [attacked] the other" might be better constructed as "partisan enough to defend one of these claims of executive privilege but [to attack] the other".
Be that as it may. Hypocrisy of the sort you mention is nearly always a leftie phenomenon, since lefties dearly love the idea that they are right because they say they are right, and that they say they are right because they must be right, etc., which opens the door for the most absurd illogic.
Even if I were somehow in the mood to search for such hypocrisy, I'd be quickly discouraged by the endless obfuscation and sophistry that lefties use to cover up the indisputable fact that they are lying. They have an infinite ability to manufacture distortions of truth and reality, while I have a severely limited ability to meticulously dissect *one* of their sophistries, let alone an endless stream of such sophistries. It's a losing game, and I refuse to play it.
"Silence is the perfect expression of contempt."
This metacommentary has been brought to you by Rational Liberty.posted by: Rational Objectivist on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM [permalink]
Just the usual "if it sounds the same it must be the same" and "why does the Dem always get a free pass?" right wing whining crap. Don't you people ever get tired?posted by: david on 07.26.07 at 10:40 AM [permalink]
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