Remembering Kennedy-era fiction–a half-hearted homage:
Woofketeers, once upon a time in our land there were liberals of the Jack Kennedy type (assuming that JFK may even be regarded as liberal in today’s political mix) and they cared about things. They cared about the Constitution of the United States, and they cared about justice, and they really, really cared about peace, and not having a nuclear war with Russia—they were big on that one. Some of you may recall those days. And many of these idealists were authors whose books always got made into feature films by idealistic liberals in Hollywood; and most of these authors agreed that the greatest threat to their liberal ideals would come in the form of a bunch of well-intentioned but hopelessly misguided right-wing nutcases, probably in the military, attempting to seize control of the government or starting World War III or doing both simultaneously. Initially, in fact, these authors were not particularly disparaging of such misguided right wingers. They treated them with only slightly condescending sympathy. Like, in Fail Safe, which taught us that if we didn’t get rid of our nuclear weapons we would probably have a computer glitch and our Air Force bombers, albeit flown by well intentioned and heroic men, would wind up blowing up New York, remember?
And then we had that intriguing naval saga, The Bedford Incident that showed us that placing our navy destroyers in the hands of dedicated, hard-core patriots would inevitably cause one of them to accidentally blow up a soviet submarine (that was in any case just minding its own business) and cause World War Three….and in case you didn’t get the idea from the book, the movie was even more helpful in clarifying this understanding because it came out in 1964 (the Goldwater vs, LBJ election, right?) and Richard Widmark, who played the misguided but patriotic right-wing skipper, wore strangely incongruous horn rim glasses that were, if you thought about it or absorbed the matter subconsciously, an exact match for Barry Goldwater’s—so, get it? Goldwater meant well too, but you just knew that if he got elected he’d probably accidentally blow up a Russian sub too, and –well—there goes planet earth! (Granted, some viewers may have gotten the impression that Buddy Holly or B.F. Skinner would accidentally blow up a Russian sub, but Hollywood is over a lot of peoples heads!)
Now, in these days of which we speak, Woofketeers, there lived a young author named Fletcher Knebel, and he wrote a lot of these types of books too—especially the ones where the well-intentioned but hopelessly misguided right-wingers were always going to take over the government for the good of the country because some “weak sister” American president (usually played by Fredric March) was getting too solicitous of the Ruskies so the well-intentioned but hopeless paranoid right-wingers wanted to stop it by any means necessary. And Mr. Knebel’s best work to this effect (although Night of Camp David wasn’t bad either) was definitely Seven Days in May. You may have even seen the flick because even though it’s old and dated in numerous ways, its plot surrounds the Preakness, so it gets played around triple-crown time on the classic movie stations and some of the network affiliates.
The main hook, or “the McGuffin” (as Hitchcock would say) was the same in the book and in the subsequent movie script by Rod Serling—namely that this egomaniacal Air Force general, played by Burt Lancaster, was going to stage a coup and take control of the government to save us from an arms treaty that would cede nuclear supremacy to the Reds—and this was a Kennedy-era liberal’s worst nightmare…the military take over part, that is, not letting the Reds get ahead. So Kirk Douglass played a Marine officer who found out what was going on and saved America from Burt Lancaster. The constitution was saved, and nobody ever explained why Congress didn’t simply refuse to ratify the treaty if it was so bad—but we digress.
Our point here, Wooferians, is that for decades and decades a fear was routinely expressed by liberals that the Right Wing, left unchecked, would find a means of dissolving the Constitution and establishing a military dictatorship, or a dictator whose authority was vouchsafed by the military. You may know Liberals who honestly believe (because they tell themselves this, and teach it to one another in school) that the opposite of a liberal is a fascist. This is silly. The opposite of a liberal is a social conservative, and no aspect of the American experiment is more desirable to preserve for a conservative than its foundational documents and their original understanding. We have said so for decades now, but Liberals cannot bring themselves to believe that the amplification of liberalism (which is essentially utopianism) is fascism, or communism—two sides of the collectivist coin. But we don’t have enough space to explain this in detail, so we hope the majority of our readers already get it. In any case, the proof is visible in events, so one need hardly wax tediously theoretical.
Why can’t presidents just take over the country?
Well, first of all, it’s not legal, obviously. The executive branch is only one branch of three equally powerful and counterbalanced components of the government. The president commands the military, but he must do so within constitutional limits. One reason no president has ever attempted an authentic takeover of the government has long been held to be that the troops necessary to enforce such a power grab and maintain it through the imposition of prolonged martial law, simply wouldn’t do it. The military after all swears its allegiance to the Constitution, not to the President, who is a duly authorized commander in chief only insofar as he seeks to preserve constitutional writ. If a president should act against the Constitution, he sacrifices any authority he previously enjoyed under its precepts. Simple right? But left to its own devices, liberalism seems considerably less enamored of the Constitution than formerly supposed. And President Obama seems especially bent on demonstrating the fact. Let us quickly review:
The Obamacare violations:
First of all, there’s that mandatory requirement that we buy a product—namely Obamacare–unheard of in the history of our Constitutional Republic, and furthermore that we be fined (or imprisoned, as Nancy Pelosi suggested) if we don’t, which is equally unheard of except that Justice Roberts was nice enough to arbitrarily turn it into a “tax,” which is odd since it didn’t originate in the House, but oh well—and then there’s Obama’s insistence that the individual states increase their Medicare coverage, which he has no legal authority to insist on, but then, he has no legal authority to establish a death panel, either, or as he prefers to call it, “the Independent Payment Advisory Board,” which will be fifteen appointees whose job will be lowering Medicare expenditures—and by the way, IPAB is not subject to external review even though it will control about 13 percent of the federal budget, and kill a lot of grannies. This blatantly violates the separation of powers, but nobody seems to mind…yet.
And speaking of which….
Despite Obamacare being, however absurdly, the law of the land, our Beloved Helmsman has arbitrarily issued over 2000 waivers to federal employees and cronies and big businesses seeking immunity from it. Harry Reid’s state of Nevada got a blanket waiver (no wonder he’s all for it, eh?) and Nancy Pelosi’s favorite gourmet restaurants in San Francisco are exempt—but not because any such exemptions exist in the law—only because Obama waved his magic wand—which wand, to be sure, is nowhere mentioned in the Constitution, and seems particularly abusive of the equal protection clause—just sayin.’
The Government Car business
Remember the auto bailouts? Let’s just take Chrysler. The use of TARP funds to bail out auto manufacturers was illegal. Obama then denied priority to secure creditors (shareholders) by paying them only 30 cents on the dollar (but nobody cared because those guys are a bunch of evil rich people and they deserve to be punished) and the skim went to his cronies in the labor unions. But nobody seemed to mind that very much either. Meanwhile, the atrocity that is known as “Dodd-Frank” enabled Obama to engage in un-reviewed power politics as the whim took him in his corporate dealings. It also gave the Treasury Department power to seize banks. It made it possible for the Consumer Protection Bureaus to make up their own laws, and then enforce them in accordance with their personal interpretations. Pretty gutsy, and, of course, totally unconstitutional.
You may recall that after the Deepwater Horizon disaster erupted (at least partially due to Obama granting safety waivers to British Petroleum in return for their generous donations to his campaign), and while all the networks were shrieking that life on earth was about to end because of oil leaking into the ocean, Obama responded by issuing a blanket six-month moratorium on all oil and gas drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. When a federal judge struck down the moratorium as “arbitrary and capricious,” Obama simply ignored the judge. The judge found the government in contempt of court, but since Obama didn’t care, the Liberal Establishment Media didn’t care—so nobody cared.
IRS and the Tea Party
It may be recalled that before he got caught using the IRS to bully Tea Party organizations into inutility, the president had already been caught using the IRS to muzzle political speech by suddenly announcing that certain nonprofit advocacy groups (but only the bad ones that didn’t like the president) would be subject to the gift tax despite the fact that the gift tax was never applied in this fashion to any 501 (C) (4) organization before. When the IRS was confronted, it backed down, but of course we now know it simply moved on to obstructing Tea Party and pro-constitution “non-profits” from receiving the requisite tax status to perform their missions. That the IRS acted at the behest of the administration is blatantly obvious.
So enough of this, you get the idea—for the first time in American history a president clearly deems the Bill of Rights “a charter of negative liberties” that is inconveniently restrictive of governmental authority and is best dealt with dismissively. It must be admitted here, of course, that “W” Bush famously snapped that the Constitution was “just a goddam piece of paper,” but nobody has flouted such a mindset as casually or as consistently as the incumbent, possibly because Obama could burn the Constitution in the rose garden and the media would restrict their remarks to discussions of his fastidiousness in supervising the attendant safety issues.
SO HERE’S HOW YOU DO 7 DAYS IN MAY –INSIDE OUT!
See, once you look at the whole Seven Days in May scenario from the reverse angle—the one with good guy conservatives trying to preserve the Union while a bad guy ultra liberal president attempts to take it over and transform it into a banana republic, the whole operation becomes a different proposition. Viewed from this perspective, the task becomes infinitely simpler. Instead of good-guy Kirk Douglas trying to stop the overthrow of the president from the outside, you have instead the president, on the inside, getting rid of everybody who resembles the Kirk Douglas character. Indeed, you have the systematic stripping from the military of anybody who might fail to prove adequately sycophantic when the chips are down. And together with this, you have a massive effort at liberalization occurring within the armed forces in a frantic effort to shift the military ethos toward political correctness and obeisance to the president rather than the Republic.
Goodbye, good men!
Why was General James “Mad Dog” Mattis (of what the president would call the Marine Corpse) relieved of his crucial duties at US Central Command overseeing wars in the MiddleEast? Mattis, who is author of the sapient motto, “Have a plan to kill everyone you meet,” will officially retire from the Corps in March—considerably earlier than anticipated. What are his sins? Toughness, outspokenness, and an ironclad loyalty to his country? Most of us also recall the unceremonious removal of General Stanley McChrystal from command in Afghanistan after being quoted in Rolling Stone calling Joe Biden “Vice President Bite-me.” Also, General David Petraeus was jerked home, placed at CIA, and chased into retirement by “sudden” revelations of his infidelities with biographer Paula Broadwell (possibly an early catch by the NSA phishing program) which had the additional effect of rendering him taciturn regarding the Benghazi debacle. And speaking of Benghazi, the firings there included Maj. Gen. Ralph Baker, commander of the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, who was canned last March 28. Baker, was reported to have been fired “because of a loss of confidence.” Really?
Meanwhile, General William “Kip” Ward, was reduced to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and returned from the service, possibly because of excessive spending sprees and an unduly lavish life style. WOOF KNOWS however that both Rear Admiral Charles Gaouette and General Carter Ham, were fired at Obama’s personal insistence for attempting to interdict the terrorist assault on the U.S. mission in Benghazi. General Ham, it may be recalled, was the first to dismiss the administration’s movie-protest story as nonsense, telling reporters that it was clearly a terrorist assault. Woof also knows that Ham, at least, was preparing to ignore the stand-down order and proceed to the relief of the Benghazi mission when his second-in-command –an Obama sycophant—saw his moment and forcibly relieved Ham of his command, placing him under arrest for insubordination. And WOOF also knows, so you don’t have to remind us (unless you feel driven) that these assertions are widely considered “debunked” because of the White House’s use of ABC News to denounce this version of events as a creation of right-wing nuts (like us here at WOOF). The ABC story stated that Gaouette was “not fired,” but “replaced temporarily” and reassigned to Bremerton, Washington, pending an investigation into “inappropriate leadership judgment.” WOOF scoffs at this incipient noun chain—and at ABC for lacking the creative juice to confect a better cover story.
Meanwhile, over at missile defense command, the two-star general in charge of all Air Force nuclear missiles was fired a week ago in the immediate wake of another high level officer overseeing America’s nuclear arsenal being similarly sacked (no pun intended). Air Force Maj. Gen. Michael Carey was removed from command of the 20th Air Force, which maintains and controls 450 intercontinental ballistic missiles with “mirved” warheads at three separate bases. No reason for Carey’s firing was given by the Air Force, which nevertheless announced what were not the reasons, insisting it had nothing to do, for instance, with gambling, or the loss of a nuclear weapon, or sexual misconduct. It probably had nothing to do with torturing puppies, either, but they left that out. Carey’s firing comes two days after the Navy announced it had canned a three-star admiral serving as the deputy commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, which oversees all nuclear-armed missiles, bombers and submarines for the United States Navy. Vice Admiral Tim Giardina.
Gardina remains under investigation for alleged gambling improprieties, as opposed to General Carey who you will recall is not suspected of gambling improprieties, although no one has expressly exonerated Admiral Giardina of losing a nuclear weapon or…or…what is going on here, Woofketeers? Is Our Beloved Leader unfairly saddled with the most incompetent military leadership in our national history, or is something else afoot? As firings continue–including such exemplary men at arms as Major General Ralph Baker, Brigadier General Bryan Roberts, and Lieutenant General David Holmes Huntoon, Jr. of the United States Army, and Major General Gregg A. Sturdevant and Major General Charles M. Gurganus of the USMC, the rumors mount that Christians are being deleted from the office cadres, as well as conservatives and those who show an impolitic hostility toward their Islamic adversaries in the middle east. That a bizarre effort is underway to make the wartime military more Muslim-friendly is well documented.
The Rand Paul letter….
The media have been almost entirely devoted lately to persuading the American public that Ted Cruz is a raving lunatic, it may as a consequence have slipped our memories that only last March they were equally busy convincing us that Rand Paul was a raving lunatic. Paul, it may be recalled, launched a filibuster of sorts during which he had the gall to say the following:
“If there were an ounce of courage in this chamber, I would be joined by Senators from both parties today, saying that no President has the authority to kill Americans without charge or trial.”
So…the media went to work guffawing at the crazy yawp from backward, inbred Kentucky who was so crazy he thought the President might take to killing U.S. citizens right here in the United States without trial. Now where, the media asked themselves, as they are wont to do, could anyone get such an addlepated idea, and then waste everybody’s time blathering about it on the floor of the Senate when all the grown-up, experienced senators wanted to get on with serious stuff, like approving the politician John Brennan to head the CIA, and clearing the way for amnesty for illegal immigrants without securing our boarders?
In fact, Lindsey Graham and John McCain ducked out of Paul’s performance in order to dine with Barack Obama. Both men later denounced Paul’s efforts from the Senate floor. Graham averred that asking whether the president has the power to kill American citizens on American soil was “a ludicrous question,” adding. “I do not believe that question deserves an answer.” Really, Lindsey? McCain, however, condescended most asininely (though it was admittedly a close contest), telling a leftist media interviewer, “If Mr. Paul wants to be taken seriously, he needs to do more than pull political stunts that fire up impressionable libertarian kids in their college dorms. He needs to know what he’s talking about!” Of course, if John McCain had really wanted to be president, he might have been well advised to learn how to fire up libertarian college kids, not fawn over his opposition with such incomprehensible alacrity. But more to the point, what evidence did McCain possess suggesting that Paul didn’t know what he was talking about?
Where, in fact, did the raving lunatic yawp—er—Senator Paul, get such a crazy idea? From Obama’s criminal Attorney General himself, in fact, none other than the infamous gun-runner, Eric Holder. The media knew this, of course, but they didn’t care to discuss it, thank you. WOOF on the other hand, feels like discussing it. See, Rand Paul wrote to Eric Holder, asking him if the blanket authorization by Obama to use drones to assassinate American citizens included American citizens right here in, oh, say, Kentucky. Or anywhere else outside the beltway. Specifically, Paul inquired whether the president “has the power to authorize lethal force, such as a drone strike, against a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil and without trial.” So if Paul didn’t know what he was talking about, this was Eric Holder’s opportunity to say so.
Instead, Holder answered Paul on March 4th, and did so in an apparent fit of atypical honesty. His letter read in part:
“The question you have posed is therefore entirely hypothetical, unlikely to occur, and one we hope no President will ever have to confront. It is possible, I suppose, to imagine an extraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution…for the President to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States.” [Readers may view the entire letter here]
To put an end to Paul’s rantings, presumably on the theory that somebody somewhere might report on their basis if they continued, President Obama prevailed upon Attorney General Holder to contact Paul a second time, so Holder wrote Paul another letter on March 13th saying “”It has come to my attention that you have now asked an additional question: ‘Does the President have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil?’ The answer to that question is no.”
This didn’t come to Holder’s attention the first time he answered the question? (Which was not, just for the record, an “additional question.” ) Nonsense, of course it did—he just altered his response to shut Paul up—the first letter was the truthful one. Only in the sinistral cosmogony of the Liberal Establishment Media could such malarkey from the Department of Justice pass without notice. And by the way, when, since Lee’s surrender at Appomattox, is an American “engaged in combat on American soil”? One rather suspects the answer is, when President Obama says he is.
Why William Burroughs was smarter than Graham or McCain:
It seems uncomfortably obvious that the current administration is giving serious consideration to a variety of actions, military in nature, that would perpetuate Our Beloved Helmsman’s stay in office. It seems equally obvious that the awesome information-gathering abilities of the National Security Agency have been turned inward—repurposed as instruments of domestic surveillance. The NSA is now focused to an unprecedented extent on probing the quotidian business of average Americans. Phone records, Facebook pages, Internet browsings, email exchanges, telephone conversations, and now medical and mental health information have all been garnered and stored. This is the behavior of a totalitarian regime, or an administration bent on transitioning into one.
Military officers, particularly those with combat experience, and especially those with observably patriotic instincts, have been weeded out of the chain of command, and the Secretary of Defense is complicit in this endeavor. Also, Obama now has a political crony (and fellow Islamophile) situated at the helm of the Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan having won confirmation once Paul yielded the floor in the wake of Holder’s disingenuous second letter. (Oddly, when Brennan took the oath as CIA chief, he swore allegiance to the Constitution with his hand upon an original copy of the 1787 Constitution. This may seem charmingly patriotic until one considers the fact that the 1787 Constitution did not yet contain—the Bill of Rights. And why not the Bible, Director Brennan?)
And while we’re on this subject, why has NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) ordered large numbers of assault rifles and millions of rounds of ammunition? In case of giant squid attack? Why is the Department of Homeland Security now the proud owner of 1.6 billion rounds of ammo, not to mention 2,717 mine resistant urban-assault armored vehicles, many of which have already been observed and photographed patrolling the streets of hometown, USA?
Meanwhile, the Internet is ablaze with the notion that the American military is going to deliver us from Obama by staging a coup, and an amazing number of citizens seem enamored of this idea, Certainly WOOF cannot condone such anti-Constitutional thinking, save, of course, as a countermeasure to any unconstitutional power grab by President Obama—but we aren’t anticipating such an event…at least not a provable one. We consider it far more likely that Obama has cleansed his High Command of potential troublemakers, and is poised to impose martial law as a means of advancing his power beyond its legal limits. WOOF worries about this stuff a lot!
How ironic that Nebel’s vision of the presidency being overthrown by right-wing militarists during seven days in May has transmogrified into the current possibility—a Red/Islamist takeover of our government by a communist president of the United States, aided and abetted by an American military under the command of politically motivated generals and admirals. Would such a salient stand any chance of success? All would depend on the swiftness and ruthlessness of its execution, and the degree to which our armed forces might in fact assist or resist the effort—but WOOF insists that even now these questions are being seriously pondered in the Oval Office, and to a large extent acted on through the preparations noted in this article. It may be entirely correct to argue that the majority of American troops would refuse to turn their weapons on fellow citizens–but it seems evident that steps are being taken to rig the chain of command and adjust the odds.
We are, of course, notoriously paranoid, dear readers—but given the weight of circumstantial evidence, it begins to seem less psychotic to assume the worst than to ignore the facts! Come January of 2017, when the Obamas graciously turn the White House over to the newly inaugurated POTUS, (preferably Christine O’Donnell, but, in the event, to whomsoever), we solemnly pledge to publish our profound apologies for suspecting the worst in this matter. In the meantime, we will persist in suspecting the worst. It was the beatnik author William S. Burroughs, gentle readers, (whose literary and epigrammatic skills WOOF joins Michael Savage in admiring) who once remarked that: “Sometimes paranoia’s just having all the facts!”