Notes on the Atrocities
Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...

Monday, July 12, 2004  

In which case the terrorists will have, literally, won

Bush, the master magician, is distracting America with his right hand (gay marriage, the evil of trial lawyers) while his left is busy with more sinister activities:

American counterterrorism officials, citing what they call "alarming" intelligence about a possible Qaeda strike inside the United States this fall, are reviewing a proposal that could allow for the postponement of the November presidential election in the event of such an attack, NEWSWEEK has learned.

The Bushies are apparently sufficiently alarmed by a Madrid-like October Surprise that they're considering scrapping democracy, apparently, to save it. Fortunately, no such provision for unilaterally establishing a dictatorship currently exists in US law (fancy that). Congress must therefore create it, which will no doubt scare the crap out of GOP legislators.

I think we're a long way from having this become a serious possibility, but it's an instructive lesson in what the White House means by "values." Whatever they may be--traditional, conservative, laissez-faire, monarchal--they are definitely not democratic.

[Update: Everyone in the blogosphere's talking about this one. A sampling.

Tom Maguire says it's a decent idea, then changes his mind: "However, a commenter has a much better point - we are expecting Iraqis to stand up to terror and vote, Americans can darn well do the same."

Jesse says it doesn't matter when we vote, but how: "Of course, it would also help if various parties, such as those expunging felons in Florida and those helping Nader get on ballots in swing states, actually cared about democracy per se rather than how it can be twisted and manipulated to get Bush in office at any cost."

Billmon starts down the same line of thought as Tom, but takes a left turn and ends up at the Constitution: "[T]he history of the U.S. Constitution can be divided into three periods, each of precisely 72 years. The first began with the Philadelphia convention and ended with the firing on Ft. Sumter, which rung down the curtain on the aristocratic republic the founders had created. The second period stretched from Ft. Sumter to FDR's Hundred Days, and the peaceful revolution that created the modern welfare state. The third will take us to 2005, and the inauguration of the next president - assuming there's an election to be followed by that inauguration."]

posted by Jeff | 8:07 AM |
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