Friday, December 30, 2005

David Brooks: W.'s lick-spittle

Luckily, the administration still has good little lap dogs like David Brooks in the pundocracy willing to forgive W.'s most egregious usurping of imperial power. Brooks wants you to put yourself in Big Brother's (e.g. W.) shoes to see what you would do if you were in the Oval office getting daily terror briefings that are as "psychologically intense as an episode of '24'." You see, now W. is Jack Bauer and we can, no doubt, expect him to start personally kneecapping suspects himself, instead of waiting around for all this "cumbersome paperwork and bureaucratic foot-dragging" that the law requires. Brooks in his Op-Ed gives several options for you as special-agent/president-W./Bauer in your struggle to convince your fellow citizens out there "who have relaxed as 9/11 has faded into history," that they need to be "in a perpetual state of high alert." (Except for on weekends and the month of August spent in Crawford.)

One option he gives is to "avoid congress and set up a self policing (spying) mechanism using the Justice Department and NSA's inspector general." Even Brooks admits this option is "legally dubious," but then he launches into the next season of "24' writing that, "it's quite possible that some intelligence bureaucrat will leak information about the programs, especially if he or she hopes to swing a presidential election against you." Oddly, Brooks moves on from there as if this isn't exactly the option the president actually did choose and then blathers on some about no trust between congress and the executive---gosh I wonder why?--- and ends by telling all us Big Brothers out there to "face the fact that the odds of an attack on America just went up."

So, in summation, we should just allow the president to take on dictatorial powers and let him do whatever the hell he feels like doing and just make sure we have enough duct tape and plastic sheeting on hand in case some "bureaucrat" decides to help the enemy by "leaking" information on sources and methods (For purely personal and political gain, naturally.). It's funny, Brooks is always introduced as a "conservative" commentator on all the talking-head shows, but, I don't know, he sounds a little radical to me. George Will, on the other hand, who actually is a conservative, is totally against this presidential over-reach. He pointed out in one of his Op-Eds, which I can't remember when I saw it, that the constitution enumerates the legislature's powers in Article I, first in line, ahead of the executive in Article II. I thought that was kind of interesting, because back when the Founders were writing the constitution, they were pretty determined not to have another king running the show, a point David Brooks seems to have missed in his zeal to crown our new Caesar.


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