Power corrupts department


Maybe I invested too much in Obama changing Washington, maybe it can not be done, maybe nobody can do it, and, maybe, Obama just isn’t even trying. When he was a candidate, he ran on Change, he ran on Transparency, he ran on the Rule of Law.When asked about Bush and Iraq, he said

The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.

Now, in regards to Libya, where we spent a shit-load of money sending cruise missiles – 110 on the first day – and where we sent actual, piloted, A-10 ground attack aircraft to attack Khadafi’s forces, and where we are still involved; the Obama Administration says

The President is of the view that the current U.S. military operations in Libya are consistent with the War Powers Resolution and do not under that law require further congressional authorization, because U.S. military operations are distinct from the kind of ‘hostilities’ contemplated by the Resolution’s 60 day termination provision. U.S. forces are playing a constrained and supporting role in a multinational coalition….

This sounds like one of the Bush Administration’s convoluted justifications and, if they had said it, we liberals would have gone nuts. Now we just sit quietly. It is sad. The Imperial Presidency just keep getting more Imperial. Sometime in 2008 I am not sure where, maybe on the PBS News Hour, Brooks and somebody, probably Shields, were discussing Obama. Brooks talked about Obama and Reinhold Niebuhr and Niebuhr’s theory on power and how it corrupts. Brooks quoted Obama as saying something along the line of  Power corrupts and the hope was that he would get a lot of good done before he got corrupted. Apparently not.



3 thoughts on “Power corrupts department

  1. And it’s actually worse than that. Now it comes out that his own attorney-general and other administration lawyers have said the he must get congressional approval to continue and that he has ignored this legal advice to claim unprecedented power to unilaterally initiate and sustain military action anywhere in the world. At the same time, he is vigorously amping up the prosecution of whistleblowers so that revelations like this won’t be brought to the attention of the public. He’s gone from being Bush-lite on “national security” policy to actually being worse.

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