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Collision Course

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The White House has just thrown Miracle-Gro on to the tenacious Constitutional confrontation between Bush and Congress over the latter's investigation into the firing of U.S. prosecutors.

Bush administration officials unveiled a bold new assertion of executive authority yesterday in the dispute over the firing of nine U.S. attorneys, saying that the Justice Department will never be allowed to pursue contempt charges initiated by Congress against White House officials once the president has invoked executive privilege.

Go ahead and file contempt charges, the administration is saying. Under federal law, those charges can only be pursued by a U.S. attorney. And because the administration won't let the Justice Department approve such a pursuit, the charges will die from neglect.

The power-grab here is pretty astonishing. The president isn't just asserting that his invocation of executive privilege trumps Congress' power of oversight, a claim that is at least plausible; he's asserting that such invocation of executive privilege in the face of a contempt citation can never be challenged in court, because the Justice Department will simply refuse to bring the charges.

Now, this claim is currently limited to the narrow question of Congress filing contempt charges. But within that narrow scope it effectively puts the President above the law. And since contempt charges are Congress' main weapon against executive privilege claims it removes most limits on such claims.

True, Congress could still file a civil lawsuit to force a judicial decision on a specific claim. But such a decision would lack teeth. Say Congress wins its civil lawsuit, and the president still refuses to turn over documents. What recourse does Congress have? Nothing short of impeachment, with contempt charges off the table.

But beyond that, why can't the same logic be applied to any violation of federal laws that rely on the Justice Department for enforcement? Commit the crime, then forbid Justice to investigate; it's a get-out-of-jail-free card, with (once again) impeachment the only remedy.

LAPDOG WATCHDOG

It's also a sign of the lapdog status to which the Justice Department has fallen. Though the Bush stance rests heavily on a similar argument (pdf) advanced as part of a Reagan administration lawsuit, Reagan's White House never actually tried to carry it out. Nor was it resolved in the courts, because the Reagan administration official in question eventually agreed to give Congress the documents it wanted (pdf) — derailing the lawsuit by caving.

Rep. Henry Waxman gets the best quote on that aspect: "I suppose the next step would be just disbanding the Justice Department." But the best summation comes from Mark Rozell, a professor who wrote the book on executive privilege that accompanies this article: "It's allowing the executive to define the scope and limits of its own powers."

LEGITIMATE ISSUE

Hidden within here is an interesting, legitimate question. When Congress suspects wrongdoing in the executive branch, how can it be handled? Should Congress have the power to compel an investigation and prosecution of a "co-equal" branch? Probably not. Should the administration have the power to decide whether to investigate or prosecute itself? Probably not. So what's left?

The ideal situation would involve an independent prosecutorial service weighing each case on its merits, not on politics or who signs their paychecks. But it's easy to see why that might not be practical. And anyway the phrase "independent prosecutor" still sends shivers up the spines of people on both sides of the aisle.

That's why the best solution is probably current practice: Let Congress bring contempt charges; let the president invoke executive privilege; and let the judiciary sort out the winner, establishing legal tests for doing so in a consistent manner.

PRACTICAL EFFECTS

The audacity of the claim aside, what would happen if the president's interpretation carried the day? Not quite as much as you might think. He'd be immune from contempt charges, certainly. But that would not shield him from Congressional wrath.

For one thing, Congress could turn to its "inherent contempt" power, last used in 1934, which entails having the Sergeant-at-Arms arrest the suspect and holding a trial on the Senate floor. Sen. Patrick Leahy described the process and history of the procedure back in May 2000, during discussions about whether to subpoena Clinton's attorney general. Among other things, Dick Cheney would preside over the proceedings (unless he was forced to recuse himself for conflict of interest).

There are problems with such a course, however. Besides the archaic spectacle and huge waste of time, Bush could just pardon anyone so convicted — although there's some debate over whether his pardon power extends to contempt of Congress.

More prosaically, Congress could simply hold up funding bills, nominee hearings and any other business until the president coughs up the information it wants, as well as tying the administration up with endless subpoenas, investigative hearings and other forms of harassment. Not to mention riders specifically forbidding any use of federal funds to fight a contempt citation.

So perhaps the administration should think twice about pushing their case much further. As I argued above, Bush should invoke executive privilege and then let the courts decide if that outweighs Congressional oversight in this particular case.

DELAYING TACTIC

Of course, the administration may be less interested in proving its case than in simply delaying it until Bush leaves office. Two executive privilege assertions, both of which will probably be appealed to the Supreme Court, may well do the trick — though Congress could petition the Supreme Court to accept the cases directly, bypassing lower courts.

For now, look for two separate constitutional questions to head to the courts. The first will be an opinion on the viability of the latest administration claim. The second (assuming the administration loses the first round) will be the underlying question of whether privilege trumps oversight in this particular case.

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About Sean Aqui

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    i’ve gotta cast my vote for “delaying tactic”

    but this whole “executive privilege” thing is just ludicrous

    please point it out in the Constitution?

    if Memory serves, it was Eisenhower that first used the broad and currently proposed definition of the term “executive privilege” as part of a “unitary executive” concept

    but it’s a sticky one, and some Administrations push further than others

    it would appear, however, that there needs to be the proper checks and balances to said privilege…usually an “in camera” kind of closed hearing , where Oversight can be done properly without the possibility of secure information (national security, NOT political) can be protected and yet oversight duties can be achieved…

    overall, another good read, Sean…

    /golfclap

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Way too much shitting around between the executive and the congress.

    Cosidering that the executive has broken a number of laws, including the FISA–there’s really no need to do the frustrated tapdance that the congress is doing.

    The criminal has ADMITTED he broke the law. Arest his ass and throw him in jail.

    Stop all the butt-patting and pork-barrel protecting and just do it–that’s this poster’s take on the whole mess.

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    Apparently, GWB can declare whatever interesting new laws he likes, just by fiat. For example, apparently he can seize your property if he thinks you’re interfering in the government operations in Iraq. Huh? Howzat?

    citation

    As usual, it was entirely missed by the Wimpy Cabal Of Inferior Bloggers at BC. Or was it purposely ignored? Like the NIE?

    Here’s a teaser:

    For Immediate Release
    Office of the Press Secretary
    July 17, 2007

    Executive Order: Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq

    I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, find that, …it is in the interests of the United States to take additional steps …. I hereby order:

    all property and interests in property of the following persons, … are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt…

    (i) to have committed, or to pose a significant risk of committing, an act or acts of violence that have the purpose or effect of:

    (A) threatening the peace or stability of Iraq or the Government of Iraq; or

    (B) undermining efforts to promote economic reconstruction and political reform in Iraq …

    Any transaction by a United States person or within the United States that evades or avoids, has the purpose of evading or avoiding, or attempts to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order is prohibited.

    there need be no prior notice …

    The Secretary of the Treasury may redelegate any of these functions to other officers and agencies …
    This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right, benefit, or privilege, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, instrumentalities, or entities, its officers or employees, or any other person.

    Welcome to neo-soviet America.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Bliffle: You forgot the hat-tip to Gun-Toting Liberal.

    This isn’t as big a deal as GTL makes it sound. It simply extends existing practice regarding anti-U.S. terrorist activities to cover activities aimed at the government of Iraq.

    If you read the referenced laws, you’ll find that he’s merely exercising authority granted him by Congress, specifically section (b)(2)(A).

    One can disagree with the underlying assertions — that the identified groups are actually terrorist supporters, that donations of humanitarian aid “seriously impair” Bush’s ability to deal with terror — but his legal authority is clear.

  • Clavos

    “The criminal has ADMITTED he broke the law. Arest his ass and throw him in jail.”

    Can’t.

    It’s an illegal confession.

    He wasn’t Mirandized first.

    Heh.

  • moonraven

    Clavos,

    With the death of Roberto El Negro Fontanarrosa (snif snif for the Black Humorist of My Dreams), I think it’s only fair to alert you that there are a number of his series Boogie el aceitoso and Inodoro Pereya available on different sites for downloading.

    I am really surprised that you haven’t told us that Boogie is your hero.

    Just for a teaser, or what your minion chris would call a “heads up”–I am sure you will have really hot pants for the strip called El niño vietnamita….

  • moonraven

    Los últimos románticos will aurely tickle your recognition laugh, too….

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    The legal authority is not clear at all. They claim an authority but it is tenuous at best. As is the underlying law. This would make a suitable test of our new Originalist SCOTUS. Any Strict Constructionist would agree, I would think.

    I have no idea who GTL is.

  • Clavos

    MR,

    ¿Conoces este sitio?

  • Nancy

    For once I agree wholeheartedly w/MR: some of those spinless wimps in congress should simply march over to the White House & make a citizens arrest of/on Dubya & Dickie, both. What surprises me – altho I suppose it shouldn’t – is that no Republicans seem to be at all outraged by this sort of cavalier &/or lawless behavior. Is it because it’s a GOP president? Are they not mindful that if Dubya gets away with it, so can anybody else? After all, he’s thumbing his nose at ALL congressmaggots, not just the Dems.

    Personally, I think he may be setting himself up for a coup in 2008: he & Dick (or more accurately, Cheney & Dubya) will simply refuse to step down. Whaddaya gonna do about it? Because congress will surely just sit & wring their hands & gas more hot air & in the end … do nothing. Cripes, what a cynosure job being a congressmaggot is: perks, overpaid, overprivileged, arrogant – you don’t have to do anything whatsoever to earn it – & the same stupid jerks who voted you in will continue to vote for you next time, in all probability. Look at all the fools who voted for Dubya, after all. Twice.

  • moonraven

    Nancy,

    they do not do anything, and they will not do anything because:

    1. Half of them are too cowardly

    2. The other half think whatever Bush and Co. have done is just fine–and are waiting for a chance to do the same thing.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    not handing Power over as outlined in our Law when the time comes as properly delineated is indeed cause to exercise the Jeffersonian Option

    ooops..looks like there are exceptions to moonraven’s simplistic dualist dichotomy

    some thoughts on simplistic viewpoints

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    clavos,

    por supuesto que sí.

  • moonraven

    gonzo,

    the situation is shocking simple.

    You cowards choose to make it LOOK complicated so that you don’t have to do anything.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    moonraven – you continue to attempt to goad and insult me with this whole “coward” bit

    fortunately, i’m secure enough to know it’s pure bullshit, but i also find it amusing that a night bird who has fled the very country she is talking about fighting for has the cojones to call another a coward amidst her own hypocrisy…

    that’s ironic, kiddies

    and things tend to not be as simple as the simple minded view them to be

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Keep kidding yourself.

    I have offered to flush the US several times.

    Couldn’t care less what happens to you folks.

  • moonraven

    To be sane in a mad time
    is bad for the brain, worse
    for the heart. The world
    is a holy vision, had we clarity
    to see it — a clarity that men
    depend on men to make.

    -Wendell Berry, The Mad Farmer Manifesto: The First Amendment

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    a hollow offer with no semblance to Reality attached to it

    and we know you could care less, a nice cover for your personal cowardice in fleeing…but sociopaths justify themselves however is possible so they can hide

    you just keep deceiving yourself as to self importance

    i’ll keep pointing out hypocrisy

    and standing up for my Thinking as well as doing what i can via legal means until and unless the time comes when drastic measures are required in my opinion

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Have a goof funeral, sucker gonzo.

    Meanwhile:

    “We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late.”

    Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • moonraven

    1967….

  • Nancy

    Gonzo, yer talkin’ to a brick wall, there. Clavvie & I already said that, repeatedly. Undeterred, MR rants on anyways….

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    so now you are stating it’s about timing?

    a decent enough Argument on it’s face…the Trick here is …according to who?

    merely because some perceive things more urgently than others is no reason for some to toss aside their own Ethical considerations without good Reason to do so…and those reasons must satisfy the Individual making the decision…

    NOT because of the cawings from a migrating carrion eater

    your mileage may vary

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    WHICH ethical considerations, precisely?

    You sure keep those close to your chest, I guess.

    Getting off one’s ass and going to someplace that one perceives to be much better is hardly cowardice. Nor is it “fleeing”.

    Staying and doing nothing is cowardice. And it is FLEEING from one’s ETHICAL responsibilities.

    I would like just ONE person on this site to tell me what HE or SHE has done to put a stop to the destruction that your government is doing around the planet we live on–and to YOU.

    Just ONE.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    what you would like is immaterial

    remember those considerations you mentioned about not wanting to put too much info online?

    all i’ll share is that it could possibly be much more than someone who flees the field before the Battle even begins

    as for the Ethical considerations, let’s start by working within the Law and Constitution which i personally consider important to uphold and defend

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Published on Tuesday, July 24, 2007 by Huffington Post
    Now It’s On to Iran and Let’s Win There!
    by Steven Weber
    We are rapidly approaching a karmic bitch slap, kiddies.

    Don’t think ’cause we have iPhones and drive Navigators and run our air conditioners ’round the clock that we’re immune from history’s all-powerful undertow. We are not. We will join the parade of nations who succumbed to the intoxicating effects of their own poetry, who allowed their loins to trump their minds, who permitted hubris and greed to relentlessly infect its population, and their collective egos to swell until the outer skin blistered and popped and oozed life itself, puddling onto the sooty ground that was once home.

    We are like them, make no mistake. And if we don’t address what is happening right now in a specific oval shaped office in a specific nation’s capitol, then it will be over and we will be standing around like idiots after a storm and we will look at all the other victims and they at us and we will still be unable to comprehend what has happened anymore than a steer does before it is stunned with a short swift blow to the head. And if you think this is just another liberal blog shouting anti-authoritarian bullshit, you’d be wrong. Because good things go bad all the time. Sweet, pure babies are born and grow into monsters. Republics are hewn by gritty, passionate pioneers of freedom only to have those founders ousted and the nation forcibly occupied and run by fat-assed, profiteering chicken hawks.

    Must we wait for the Neo-Cons’ Lee Atwater moment, the deathbed retraction of all their unfair, unethical, inhuman behavior they’ve engaged in? Ain’t gonna happen, chums. Think of what America was and what it has become. And once you grasp that then look only a little farther ahead to what will be. You don’t need a pie chart or a power point presentation. All the work’s been done and done and it is in-fucking-fallible. To see the future one need only look to the past. Look at BushCo and his Neo-Con stormtroopers: the more intense their denials, the more incendiary their threats, the more their eyes pop and their veins swell, the closer they are to their ideological orgasm: Fascism. We either heed the signs and choke it off or run before you get drenched. Constitution of the United States: prepare for the money shot!

    So, good bye, Abe Lincoln. So long, Thomas Jefferson. Adios, Greatest Generation. You are over. Greed has won. Money has won. Might has won. The beasts of our nature have won. And so it is left for another future people to escape from the tyranny of their oppressive masters, to forge with their sweat and soul a nation that stands apart from the mechanized soulless empires that writhe about the surface of the depleted planet, and who can hopefully learn from our mistakes and create a nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

    Best known for having played a string of affable, horny fools and affable, quirky sociopaths, in a logical next step Steven Weber played the appealingly prickish chairman of a television network on NBC’s recent Studio 60, finally attaining the credentials to become a spewer of hyperbolic, liberal-leaning outrage, which first burst forth some 6 years ago.

    © 2007 The Huffington Post

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    your quoted writer missed something…

    “Time wounds all heels.” – R.A.H.

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    The Constitution is gone, gonzo.

    The Rule of Law has been broken.

    The guys in the Oval Office did it.

    They put the tiro de gracia into the nape of the neck of the last breath of democracy.

    Wake up before they put that same bullet into your neck.

    Just a word to the wise….

  • moonraven

    No, it’s NOT more.

    Why do you think I have my own CIA shadow?

    Do you?

  • moonraven

    Sit there in the toilet and wait.

    Waiting and doing nothing are two things you folks are good at.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    anyone attempting to pierce my “neck” has a rude Awakening due them

    have criminals violated out Law?

    yep

    is there a systemic solution within said Law?

    yep

    might one suggest you look to the same problems you are bitching about in your nation of origin within your current nation of Choice?

    glass houses and all that…

    but if you think the things you mention are lost on folks, or that some are not indeed doing what they think best to deal with said Problems, then you are either in denial, uninformed or willfully deluded

    either way, sniping from the stands does not put one in the field of play, and heckling from the crowd counts much less than being on the field

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    but if you think the things you mention are lost on folks, or that some are not indeed doing what they think best to deal with said Problems, then you are either in denial, uninformed or willfully deluded

    Oh?

    Where are your results?

    Yesterday John Conyers, who promised to impeach Bush/Cheney had the folks who demanded that he follow through on that promise arrested!

    I don’t see any results.

    Badges? We don’t need no stinkin’ badges, gringo!

    In case you overlooked it–Mexico is not the country that invaded Iraq and Afghanistan, nor is it the country that took away your civil rights and gave you the finger.

    The US invaded Mexico twice. Except for Pancho Villa’s raid on Columbus, NM, by no stretch has Mexico invaded the US–but one by one its citizens are invading the US.

    It appears you are between a rock and a hard place.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    as i thought, ill conceived threats (invading one by one) and more cawing from afar

    you take too short a View, imo

    and hence you will never be satisfied, so discussion is pointless and fruitless…but i do try to be Fair

    enjoy your day, moonraven

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    I always enjoy my day; I am not in the US!

    No threat–just an observation: There will be 600,000 more Mexicans in the US by the end of this year. How many millions does that make?

    I already speak Spanish–so that’s not my problem, either.

    As for taking a short view, I see Dec. 21, 2012 as being right around the corner–moreover, I look forward to it.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    sorry…i’m just not hip to the “end of the world” scenarios…no matter their scriptural source

    pure hubris, imo

    and i am all for sealing up the U.S. border, and dealing with criminals who illegally cross our borders…my main thrust on the Issue is to deal with the criminals who hire them first…

    but i digress

    so one bit of Advice…

    “learn to swim”

    nuff said

    Excelsior?

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Bliffle (from way back at #8):

    The legal authority is not clear at all.

    It’s clear inasmuch as what he’s doing is clearly allowed by the (Congress-passed) law that he cites.

    They claim an authority but it is tenuous at best. As is the underlying law.

    The claimed authority is not tenuous; it’s based firmly on the underlying law. What do you consider “tenuous” about the underlying law?

    This would make a suitable test of our new Originalist SCOTUS. Any Strict Constructionist would agree, I would think.

    Again, please explain what you’re getting at here. You seem to think the underlying law is itself unconstitutional. Why?

  • moonraven

    gonzo, I need no advice–especially from you.

    As for not being hip to end of the world scenarios, I think it’s clear that you are not hip to much of anything.

    But you maintain the smugness of the deliberately uninformed, now….

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    oh yeah..me , uninformed…i’ll gladly leave my Record here on BC as refutation on my being “uninformed”

    but you have some Fun from afar, snipe as you like..i’ll continue to defend your Right to do so

    and i’ll continue to toss my thoughts in opposition as i deem required

    you have Fun waiting for the whole Mayan thing to play out, we can laugh about it in 2013

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    I will be the only one laughing, gonzo.

    Your record here on blogcritics absolutely PROVES how uninformed you are.

    And how absolutely trival in orientation–adolescent music videos, indeed.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    it proves shit for nothing birdie

    ever hear of tabbed browsing?

    or multi-tasking, for that matter?

    BC is not a news sight, it’s about entertainment and information/opinion

    so if i tab over while reading Reuters, that PROVES just how wrong you are…

    again

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Naw, it’s just kid stuff. Like watching MTV.

    And it’s boring as hell.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    you just will never accept when something you said is proven incorrect, will you?

    fair enough, thanks for making the point for me

    you prove to be the same creature as those you rail against, just different colored feathers

    /ignore

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    It has never been proven incorrect.

  • Clavos

    gonzo sez:

    “you prove to be the same creature as those you rail against, just different colored feathers”

    To which MR replies:

    “It has never been proven incorrect.”

    Just as we’ve always known; only now, MR admits it: she projects her own shortcomings and flaws onto the rest of us.

  • moonraven

    Ah, and clavos’ mother wears combat boots, I suppose.

    Grow up. You are far too old to be so infantile.

  • zingzing

    “I will be the only one laughing, gonzo.”

    in 2013? so now you are going to survive while the rest of us die, eh? why?

  • Clavos

    Not exactly, zingzing…I’ll be right there with gonzo.

    So, I suspect, will you and most of the people alive today.

  • zingzing

    i know that, you know that… but why does moonraven think that a) the world will end (or begin again, whatever) in 2012, and b) that she will live through such an event while the rest of us won’t?

    the answer to the first part is she’s a nut and the answer to the second is that she’s an arrogant nut. still, i wanted her to have to come up with something better.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Just a few Thoughts on the Mayan calendar and the End of Time.

    The Mayan calendar is not a scriptural device, it is a calendar. The end of 2012 signals the end of a Long Cycle in this calendar, a cycle lasting thousands of years. The point is that there is no further Long Cycle – or any other Cyclical count on the Mayan calendar; implying the end of Time, or at least the end of Time as the Mayans understood it. One way to look at all this is the way Marthe Raymond does – death and destruction for everyone around. Indeed, the Word around many Indian Campfires is to prepare for terrible times.

    Several other Events are predicted for this same time period from other cultures. One is a shift in the magnetic poles. The magnetic poles are already speeding up there movement under the earth so much so that bird migration patterns are changing. Some have written that this shift, or flip-flop, could result in disastrous electrical storms, an EMP, and all sorts of other problems including major earthquakes and tsunamis. It is reasonable to assume that there will be casualties in the wake of such an Event, if it proves top be as disastrous as predicted.

    From Jewish tradition comes the arrival of the Redemptive messiah. The chief Event here would be the destruction of the Evil Impulse, that impulse which is the cause of exploitative relationships. If this occurs in this same general time period, Time as we know it will certainly end; it will no longer be the employer’s whip over his subordinates – it will be the measure of our fulfillment of days. Immediately before messianic redemption will come wars in which the militaries of major countries will be destroyed in the Valley of G-d’s Judgment – ‘Émeq Yehoshafát just north of Armón haNetzív where I used to live in Jerusalem.

    To put this all a bit differently, a number of cultures are predicting Trouble ahead – but this does automatically mean extinction. But many casualties can be expected and the most we can do right now is to pray, and act decently towards one another. I realize this seems to counter what I often say about Israel being prepared to use its nukes, but even I have to recognize that the kind of regime I desire may not come about immediately, and this nuclear policy I’ve advocated will not come about either…

    Something else will, though.

    All in all, I’m a tad more optimistic than Ms. Raymond. I’m confident that 2013 will see many of us around – but not ALL of us; those of us who survive until 2030 will see miracles that none of us would believe possible.

    Just something to ponder…

  • Clavos

    According to National Geographic, the North Pole is definitely shifting towards Siberia. The Geographic says it has moved about 685 miles during the past century.

    However, this is not the first time it has moved.

    Says the Geographic,

    The shift is likely a normal oscillation of the Earth’s magnetic field, Stoner said, and not the beginning of a flip-flop of the north and south magnetic poles, a phenomenon that last occurred 780,000 years ago.

    Such reversals have taken place 400 times in the last 330 million years, according to magnetic clues sealed in rocks around the world. Each reversal takes a thousand years or more to complete.

    “People like to think something special is happening in their lifetimes, but despite the dramatic changes, I don’t see any evidence of it,” Stoner said. “It’s probably just a normal wandering of the pole.”

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    I used to think end-of-the-world speculation was fun. Now it really pisses me off.

    I have two kids. They will be 12 and 9 in 2012. Anyone want to look me in the eye and tell me they deserve to have the world end on them?

    Anyone want to say with a straight face that any God or higher being that would pull a stunt like that deserves worship?

    If “end of the world” means “beginning of paradise on earth”, fine. But I notice that almost all such scenarios are preceded by terrible carnage, the purpose of which usually is to weed out the unbelievers.

    Now I happen to think that End Times talk is so much nonsense. But I still have trouble wrapping my mind around the idea that there are people who would wish this crap on kids.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Sean,

    Your children deserve a much better world than you or I can leave them. So do my two boys. So do all the children of the world, Sean. Think of all the girls in the Phillipines or Indonesia who face lives of sexual slavery because of the poverty of their parents. This is the fate they will likely face. Is this what they deserve? Don’t they deserve a better world?

    Hell, don’t the Arab kids who pick through the garbage dumpsters with their grandparents in Jerusalem deserve a better world? They deserve a culture where they are condemned to pick through someone else’s garbage? I don’t think so.

    Did the children of Gush Qatif deserve to be traumatized for their entire lives by having brother Jews throw them out of their homes and turn them into internal refugees, exiles within Israel? I don’t think so.

    We all deserve a better world.

    But none of us are able to provide this to anybody. Those of us who have ideas do not have power to make those ideas happen. Believe me, there is no shortage of ideas. But there is a shortage of power, because the boys at the top have the goons to keep us in line. Those who have power want the hell to stay just the way it is, so long as we are the ones outside the fence of power and prosperity and they remain in charge…

    So, some of us hope in something that we are told of in prophecy. You can dismiss all this if you wish. You’re a big boy, Sean, and you get to make your own choices. And, you, like the rest of us, get to live with the consequences. And so do your children…

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Ruvy,

    I agree with the first two-thirds of your post. And I apologize for the spleen-venting.

    I disagree with your second-to-last paragraph because I believe that we all have the power to shape the world for the better. So I’m more optimistic than you.

    And your last paragraph, with its talk of “consequences”, simply reinforces my point about End Times prophecy. Even if I deserve to be cast into the pit for not following the correct religion, why should a couple of innocent kids pay the price for my actions?

    Any God who would do that is evil. Or at least cruelly indifferent. Either way, I don’t see how they deserve praise.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    oh my stars and garters…

    so much Wishful Thinking in the whole end of days/messiah scenarios

    that’s all it is , really…a childish desire to have all problems solved by the big ghost in the sky waving it’s magic wand and correcting all the Entropy and Pain into some more positive result

    if belief in such gives one Comfort, more power to them…anything that can help make it through a day that doesn’t involve harming another is just fine by the likes of me

    but only some mental defective or hideous sadist would set up a Game that was rigged before it began and whose outcome is unalterable as well as Tragic…and no matter what happens, or an Individuals worth…they would always in Eternity remain helpless paws doomed before they were even conceived

    Excelsior?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Sean,

    And your last paragraph, with its talk of “consequences”, simply reinforces my point about End Times prophecy. Even if I deserve to be cast into the pit for not following the correct religion, why should a couple of innocent kids pay the price for my actions?

    I’m no fundamentalist who tosses people into hell for not belonging to the right club. That is not what I’m talking about. And I retain some of that fundamental decency I saw in Minnesota over the twenty years I lived there.

    But we all make decisions in our lives, choices. When we are little children our parents sometimes shield us from the consequences of those choices. But now that we are big boys and girls, mom and dad don’t do that. Nor should they.

    I disagree with your second-to-last paragraph because I believe that we all have the power to shape the world for the better.

    You don’t live under a criminal government like I do. No, amend that. The government you live under does not appear as criminal as mine does. So you can cling to the illusion of peaceful change. I can’t do that. I’d be lying to myself if I did. Ultimately the evil order in this country will be overthrown through its own weakness and outside attack. I daren’t predict what will happen to America…

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Ruvy..you are speaking of a purely secular order of things, that you want changed by the Metaphysical

    good Luck with that

    even a few thousand years ago, when your part of the world was occupied by Rome, folks talked of a “messiah” to save them

    didn’t quite work out that way, did it?

    but Rome eventually left, for purely secular reasons

    just because you are within History does not mean that some supernatural being has to Intervene…

    as always, Man changes the problems wrought by Man

    imo, much of this desire to be “rescued” by the invisible ghosties arises from a feeling of injustice and helplessness…but only we can save ourselves

    Excelsior?

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Ruvy,

    But we all make decisions in our lives, choices. When we are little children our parents sometimes shield us from the consequences of those choices. But now that we are big boys and girls, mom and dad don’t do that. Nor should they.

    Agreed, in general. But with one big caveat: Not all consequences are just.

    I believe in being held responsible for my actions. But that presumes my actions will be judged reasonably, and that any punishment or reward will fit the crime.

    In much End Times theology, the punishment so far outweighs the alleged transgression as to boggle the mind.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    SEan,

    I don’t want to get into an argument with the Christians here over whose G-d is bigger, or meaner or more loving.

    But I feel safe is saying that what you are talking about is Christian End Times theology. Jewish ideas are very different from Christian ones, and are evolving now, while the Christian ideas have been around for a while.

  • Clavos

    Lessee,

    On one thread tonight we have people saying we’re “doomed,” and on this one, we have others talking about “End Times.”

    Awright, which SOB spiked the Kool Aid???

    Sheesh, people, it’s not even Wednesday yet (well, for Stan it is); how’re we gonna get through the week?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    ya set the alarm when ya go ta sleep, and get up when it buzzes, Clavos…

    that’s an easy one

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    You make it sound so simple, gonzo!

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    simple ain’t equal to easy, Clavos

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    Elvis asks, “Where is the harmony?”

    One place is here.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    link not working Clav…

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    here’s a working link

    fun Stuff!

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    Damn, you’re right!

    Ahora si.

    Sorry ’bout that, mon.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Harmony for Clavos…

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    yeah, I like ‘em.

    I was looking for a track from a CD I have that’s Elvis Costello on Marian McPartland’s jazz show, but it’s not on YouTube.

    Maybe I’ll upload it one day when I have time.

  • Clavos

    My 70 was at your 67.

    I just hit the link in 69.

    Gonna go back now and listen to the whole thing – I got tears in my eyes, gonzo. One of my ALL time faves!! never saw this vid before.

    C ya in a few…

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    heh…glad ya liked

    can’t believe ya have never seen the movie Woodstock? that’s where the clip is from…

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    Damn, gonzo, I don’t know whether to love you or hate you…

    Last week I had a BD and became a Beatles song title; now this.

    I really DON’T know how I’ll make it through the week now.

    BUT…

    Thanks, Bud.

  • Dr Dreadful

    My 70 was at your 67.

    I just hit the link in 69.

    Clavos, stop comparing golf scores and get back to executive privilege.

    Besides which, if it took you 69 shots just to find the fairway, perhaps you need to toss those clubs and take up a more genteel sport, like lawn bowling… :-)

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    ya mean this?

    heh

    ya know it’s that ya love ta hate me on even days, and hate ta love me on odd ones…

    but i digress

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    Yep, that’s it…

  • Clavos

    Never in my wildest dreams, when this song came out…

  • Clavos

    Doc,

    I’m a boat guy.

    I have neither money nor time for golf, though I’m told it’s a great game.

    I’m probably the only salesman in the world who doesn’t play it.

    Good to see ya back; were you away for a few?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    you know why they called it golf?

    ………….

    ……….

    …….

    all the other 4 letter words were taken

    /rimshot

    i’m here all week, folks

    Excelsior?

  • Dr Dreadful

    Yes, attending a wedding in Oregon. While there, went on alarming shopping spree justified by absence of sales tax. (It’s like everything is 8% off!)

    Back now, and in a bit of a silly mood. Some silly topics of conversation on BC the last couple of days, though: Barack Obama’s middle name, the extent of contributor masturbation as scientifically measured by moonraven, gonzo’s seemingly inexhaustible supply of beef-related puns… What a happy little world we dwell in!

  • Clavos

    “What a happy little world we dwell in!”

    Indeed. Almost as bonkers as the real one.

    Been doing some reading the past hour or so, eh?

  • Clavos

    “i’m here all week, folks”

    Thanks for the warning, gonz…

  • Clavos

    Cute link, gm. Can’t believe I bit…

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    heh..Doc thinks my puns are inexhaustible, wait till he sees my alliteration!

    mwahahHAAHAHahaHAhhhaHAHahHAhAhahHhhHahhHAHhhHAhaaa!

    ooops…was that my out loud voice?

    Excelsior?

  • Dr Dreadful

    Hey, gonz, stop trying to steal my evil laugh. I am the Dreadful One…

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    me?…steal?……a Laugh?

    oh my sainted aunt Petunia..i must have been gone too long this last time

    yer welcome ta the Title, Doc…

    but fer Galactic Overlord, well..we are gonna have some problems there

    “release the small waterfowl”!

    Excelsior?

  • http://www.maskedmoviesnobs.com El Bicho

    “Harmony for Clavos…”

    The YouTuber who posted that mislabled it. Neil Young played at Woodstock with them, but refused to allow himself to be filmed.

    Sorry for the interruption. Back to the squabbling.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    figures you would catch that one, El Bicho…knew it but didn’t think to amend the caveat…

    /salute

    no Award for the Howard the Duck clip?

    how obscure do i hafta get?

    heh…

    Excelsior?

  • http://www.elitebloggers.com Dave Nalle

    Apparently, GWB can declare whatever interesting new laws he likes, just by fiat. For example, apparently he can seize your property if he thinks you’re interfering in the government operations in Iraq. Huh? Howzat?

    citation

    As usual, it was entirely missed by the Wimpy Cabal Of Inferior Bloggers at BC. Or was it purposely ignored? Like the NIE?

    Remind me, what’s the NIE? As for the executive order, my contacts on the lunatic fringe informed me about it. I read it. The claims which are circulating are a load of crap. I therefore decided not to write on it. There are only so many versions of the same article I’m willing to write debunking ridiculous paranoia. The order in question does not seize property, it is designed to freeze bank accounts, and contrary to what people are claiming, it’s aimed at those materially supporting terrorist groups, not at people who criticize the war in Iraq. Read the full version, not the selectively edited version. This is exactly like what we’ve done for decades to foreign nations which are under sanctions. It just applies the same idea to terrorist groups.

    Dave

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Ruvy,

    But I feel safe is saying that what you are talking about is Christian End Times theology. Jewish ideas are very different from Christian ones, and are evolving now, while the Christian ideas have been around for a while.

    Yes, I was thinking about Christian ideas, but the concept isn’t restricted to Christianity.

    What does a Jewish End Time look like?

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    But Dave, it says right there: “…all property and interests in property ..”.

    I suppose that if you get your info “…my contacts on the lunatic fringe informed me about it.” from your lunatic acquaintances, rather than from the actual Whitehouse source that I cited, that your judgement is suspect. Why would anyone regard anything you say when your sources have such poor provenance?

    And you trivialized the National Intelligence Estimate, NIE, which reported that after 4 years of war in Iraq, that Al Queada is stronger than ever and they have established a safe refuge in Pakistan, where we have made expensive concessions to Musharaf in the belief he was backing us.

    Do you really think that the subject of this discussion thread is better served by drivel about peoples golf scores?

    Now I’ll pose a poser: if this press release is based on underlying law, why state it at all? Wouldn’t it just be redundant, at best, or possibly flawed? Doesn’t one risk misunderstanding?

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Bliffle,

    Now I’ll pose a poser: if this press release is based on underlying law, why state it at all? Wouldn’t it just be redundant, at best, or possibly flawed? Doesn’t one risk misunderstanding?

    I can answer that.

    The law authorizes the president to take certain actions if he declares a national emergency and satisifies certain other conditions. It also places limits on those actions, some of which the president can waive by making various declarations.

    The Executive Order, then, is Bush saying “I invoke these powers and waive these limitations.” It’s a necessary step before he can actually wield the powers.

  • moonraven

    Wow! The minute I left this thread turned to absolute drivel!

    I think the drivel began dripping when old reliable zingzing blamed ME for the Mayan and Hopi calendrical prophecies.

    Right–the messenger is always the guilty party.

    This stuff has nothing to do with any kind of theology–nor with what we could call metaphysics. It WOULD fall into the category of physics, however.

    As to why I expect to be laughing in 2013:

    1. At my age, and having lived with systemic lupus for more than 60 years already, the odds of my being around 5 years from now to see the conflagration are probably not the best.

    2. WHEREVER I am in 2013, I will have been right.

    What would you expect ME to do–cry?

    Maybe–but I doubt it.

  • zingzing

    “I think the drivel began dripping when old reliable zingzing blamed ME for the Mayan and Hopi calendrical prophecies. Right–the messenger is always the guilty party.”

    ha. i didn’t blame you for anything, you poor victim, you. i asked you why you would be laughing. and to be laughing, you have to be alive. sorry, just the truth of it. if you’re dead by that time, the only thing coming out of your mouth will be worms.

  • moonraven

    Back to the topic at hand:

    Mike Gravel got it right in the debate:

    Never mind impeachment, Gravel says: “That’s a red herring right now. It would take over a year to screw around with it.” Instead, he proposes a law commanding the president to bring the troops home. In 60 days. And if he refuses, he says, Bush goes to jail.

    My thoughts, exactly.

    Sometimes age DOES imply wisdom, rather than Alzheimers.

  • moonraven

    [Edited] My ashes will be spread all over the cerro in Moyotepc, and each and every one of them will be laughing [Edited]

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    This stuff has nothing to do with any kind of theology–nor with what we could call metaphysics. It WOULD fall into the category of physics, however.

    Okay, I’m dying to hear your explanation of the physics surrounding the Mayan predictions.

  • Nancy

    I told you all Bush is getting ready to stage a coup in 2008, rather than leave the WH…. you all think it’s just the oxycondone talking ….

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    What does a Jewish End Time look like?

    Sean, if I try to write about the Jewish concepts of the End of Days I’ll mess them up. Heck, I already messed up the “sivúv hashearím” walk around the gates of the Walled City at Judy Balint’s article on Tish’á b’Áv. And that was just about an hour long stroll!!

    Let me recommend you to Rabbi Pinchas Winston’s site. I tried reaching it recently, and Mozilla Firefox timed out on me – you may have more luck… Also, let me recommend to you Messages from Heaven about an autistic girl named Galia Gad from Haifa who is able to communicate with her mother. The site comes up in Hebrew, so click where it says “English” to understand it. Finally, if you want something that looks like thunder and brimstone, click on gog u’magóg – kol n’vuót aHarít hayamím. Again, this site loads in Hebrew and you’ll need to click the tiny “English” icon to understand it. A word about this site. It reflects the common Israeli view that all this stuff should be studied in Hebrew, so this site has not been kept up as it should have been in English.

    In my personal opinion, while the last site is the most dramatic, the first two are better in explaining Jewish ideas of redemption and Divine judgment, with the “Messages from Heaven” site being most friendly to the average fellow who is not necessarily knowledgeable of Jewish concepts.

  • Nancy

    Ah, c’mon Ruvy; you can’t find a way to summarize Jewish end times in one paragraph? It’s not that far out, even if it is esoteric. And wouldn’t the Christian end times as envisioned in Revelations (last chapter of the Xtian bible) have been founded on Jewish concepts of it?

    Give it a try. I really don’t want to read someone’s doctoral thesis on it in order to get the picture.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Nancy,

    There are no doctoral theses where I’m sending you. But what I’m sending you to is authoritative, as opposed to what this ignorant Jew can try to summarize for you. I’m a student of political science and public administration, with a good background in history. But I am no Jewish scholar. I’m a Jew. There is a big difference between the two.

    In my articles, when I try to link prophecy to historical events, inevitably I have to turn to real scholars to help me out with the linkages to Jewish prophecy.

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    Sean #89,

    Nice try, but no cigar. Although the cited Press Release mentions the underlying law, it does not cite the connection to this new pronunciamento. Which states baldly, and all on it’s own,

    “b) Any conspiracy formed to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order is prohibited.

    Sec. 3. For purposes of this order: ”

    all self-referential to this NEW law-like watchamacallit.

    Nowhere is a consequence drawn from the underlying law, thus, no opportunity for discussion. It just IS what the pres says it IS. Gee, that sounds familiar. Wasn’t some pres pilloried for something like that? You know, the word “is”?

    In fact, the pres has made it clear that this is very personal:

    “Sec. 4. I hereby determine…”

    “…would seriously impair my ability …”

    “…I find that, …”

    etc., etc.

    Are we still a nation of laws and not men?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    gotta go with bliffle on this new fiat order from Emperor W..

    it’s the same kind of thing as the drug charge causing impounding of all assets even BEFORE a trial

    so, add this new executive order to the throwing away of habeus corpus on the POTUS’ say so and you have all kinds of Constitutional violations right from the Oval Office

    for those who don’t think that W and company has already violated habeus corpus and broken the Constitutional Rights of citizens, might i remind you of JOse Padilla, who is an American Citizen who was held as an “enemy combatant” for years without being charged with a crime, nor allowed to see a Judge, all on order of the President theoretically authorized by the AUMF

    now during Truman’s time, this kind of thing had popped up briefly, and SCOTUS had ruled – “The extraordinary government power to curb civil rights and liberties during crisis periods, such as times of war, lies with Congress and not the President. Article 1, Section 9, Clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution grants Congress, and not the President, with the power to suspend the right of habeas corpus during a period of rebellion or invasion.”

    in this instance, it never go tthat far…after 3 years, much in solitary confinement, Padilla was transferred from a military brig, to a Florida jail, to face charges that had NOTHING to do with the original “enemy combatant” allegations at all, in fact he had been held for those years with NO charges brought against him then…and NOTHING charged against him having to do with ANY of the reason he was detained in the first place

    imo, this case alone is reason for Investigation and could be considered a “high crime”

    add the deliberate violations of the FISA statutes (over 200 purely domestic wiretaps done under the Administrations program, and thousands of others that bypassed the FISA laws) and we have clear reasons to hold the Administration to account for “high crimes” in deliberately and knowingly violating the Constitution as well as their Oaths of Office

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Dyinjg to know about the physics of the Mayana and Hopi prophecies? Looks like you jumped the gun by a little over 5 years.

    When Aristotle wrote The Physics and The Metaphysics, he made a distinction between those terms. Metaphysics implies a higher power of some sort (Aristotle spent his time trying to prove the existence of God–which is where the concept of the tautological argument came from) which directs events in the universe. Physics, as the word itself implies, has to do with the physical world and universe and the physical things that happen there.

    Some folks choose to take the prophecies as being non-literal. Another old friend of mine, Frank Waters (RIP), wrote a book in the early 70s called Mexico Mystique: The Coming Sixth World of Consciousness in which he was optimistic–at a distance of more than 40 years away from the end of the 13th baktun, that there would be a change of consciousness and that physical disaster would be avoided. He even included the charts of the planetary positions for the day.

    Hugo Chavez talked a lot about there being time left–that by the end of 2011 there would be a critical mass of new consciousness and physical disaster would be avoided. He was saying that 4 years ago, but he hasn’t said it lately. Despite accelerating his programs, and considering running again in Dec. 2012–just in case–I don’t know whether he is as optimistic as he was 4 years ago.

    I know I am not. In fact, in many ways I see this site as a microcosm–and I see absolutely no indication of any new consciousness here. I see, in fact, that the same old machista bs, the same dedication to and glorification of violence and just plain meanness is entrenching itself more every day. Another microcosm is the US–where I see the same thing happening.

    Here in Latin America we are struggling against the deeping destructiveness and general villany–but there is also a critical mass of that old shit here.

    I believe it is time for a well-deserved clean-out.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Moonraven,

    There are no actual physics in that answer. “Critical mass of new consciousness” has no basis in physics.

  • moonraven

    Physical destruction is physics. And that’s what I see coming.

    A critical mass of new consciousness implies metaphysics.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    destruction? from where?

    what root cause?

    what force applied to destroy what?

    and the implied “metaphysics” is just as sloppy in a field not reknown for it’s coherent content

    “some say a comet will fall from the sky,
    followed by meteor showers and tidal waves,
    followed by faultlines that cannot
    sit still…
    followed by millions of dumbfounded dipshits.

    some say the End is near,
    some say we’ll see Armageddon soon.
    certainly hope we will,
    i sure could use a vacation from these
    stupid shits…..silly shits….

    one great big festering neon distraction,
    i’ve a suggestion to keep you all occupied…

    learn to swim…”TooL

    now i’m no Advocate for “end of the world” scenarios…but that bit of Poetry holds more substance than any of the puerile cawings in the Thread…

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    I see. I am supposed to believe that your right to believe trumps everything else.

    It doesn’t. You are just a hack heckler with about as much intellectual vigor as a limp red vine.

    The forces involved are actually various. From what I understand. Primarily earthquakes and volcanic eruptions–you know, stuff with the force of a daisy air rifle.

    I did not write the prophecies for either the Mayans or the Hopi. But I have read them, and I have also spent considerable time with leaders from both groups. Unlike you.

    This site is slathered with narcissistic Alley Oop dimwits.

  • moonraven

    One of the reasons I will be laughing is that I have bought all the beachfront property in… Nebraska.

  • Clavos

    Sucker.

  • Clavos

    Pun intended.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Ruvy, re #97: Thanks; I’ll take a look.

    Bliffle, Gonzo: You need to cite the parts of the EO that you think have no basis in the underlying law, or else the parts of the underlying law you disagree with. Lord knows I don’t like Bush, but I see nothing particularly remarkable about the EO.

    Moonraven: You say there will be physical destruction caused by volcanoes and earthquakes. Okay. Will there be a motive force behind them? Is there any actual evidence to back up the claim? Or are you simply predicting that in 2012 there will just happen to be a whole bunch of them?

    Will they be restricted to existing fault lines and active volcanic zones, or will we see volcanoes and earthquakes here in Minnesota, for example?

    And why are you happy that there will be volcanoes and earthquakes killing people?

  • Dan

    If it takes an executive order to shut down partisan ninnys’ groundless persecution of principled public servants, so be it.

    It’s a good thing.

    As is the firing of corrupt prosecutors.

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    Sean, I think the burden is the other way. We should require of the Exec demonstration that the EO proceeds from underlying law.

    Imagine you were having your lawyers restate a law or order, wouldn’t you require them to err in your favor?

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Bliffle,

    What more would you have the man do? He cited the various authorities, the laws in question, etc. That is precisely what you’ve asked for.

    If you disagree with his interpretation, please explain your disagreement. I’ve looked at (and linked to) both the EO and the underlying law, and everything seems quite plainly legit.

  • moonraven

    Sean

    As I have pointed out NOW 3 times–count them–I did not write the Mayan/Hopi prophecies.

    You may choose to believe whatever you want–including that the moon is made of green cheese for all I care.

    I LOVE earthquakes (been in about 60–including some of the big ones in California) and ditto for volcanic eruptions (I DID predict the 2 Mt. Saint Helens eruptions using an astrological ephemeris). Gives me failth–no matter how much our destrucitve species gets up to the Earth is alive and…kicking.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    As I have pointed out NOW 3 times–count them–I did not write the Mayan/Hopi prophecies.

    That’s fine. Just don’t claim you have physics on your side, that’s all.

    I DID predict the 2 Mt. Saint Helens eruptions using an astrological ephemeris.

    Unsubstantiated after-the-fact claims of prescience aren’t very impressive. How about you make a testable prediction about the future and we’ll see how it turns out?

  • troll

    prediction: the US will not be able to leave Venezuela’s developing socialist bloc unmolested…I saw it in the tea leaves

  • zingzing

    moonraven: “I DID predict the 2 Mt. Saint Helens eruptions using an astrological ephemeris.”

    ha! oh my. now you’re a seer? do you have a doctorate in this as well? what other “areas of expertise” are you going to come up with?

  • moonraven

    More areas of expertise than someone ike you could even count….

    Aren’t those burgers ready yet, kid?

  • moonraven

    Sean–

    I am done with your inability to READ my posts.

    I never CLAIMED anything.

    I simply indicated that the Mayan/Hopi prophecies have more to do with PHYSICS (phys·ics(fzks)
    n.
    1. (used with a sing. verb) The science of matter and energy and of interactions between the two, grouped in traditional fields such as acoustics, optics, mechanics, thermodynamics, and electromagnetism, as well as in modern extensions including atomic and nuclear physics, cryogenics, solid-state physics, particle physics, and plasma physics.
    2. (used with a pl. verb) Physical properties, interactions, processes, or laws: the physics of supersonic flight.
    3. (used with a sing. verb) Archaic The study of the natural or material world and phenomena; natural philosophy.) than with metaphysics.

    As for predictions–those are made for MONEY. When you deposit 500 dollars in my Bank of America account, we’ll see what we can do for you.

  • zingzing

    moonraven, you’re an arrogant blowhard. it’s hard to believe you have any areas of expertise, because you claim whatever area is currently under discussion. if you would actually show some knowledge of something instead of just claiming it, it would be helpful and believable. but just claiming it…

    you predicted volcanic erruptions using… the stars? how about all those rumblings? those didn’t clue you in?

    (and i’ve never worked in food service.)
    (and i don’t eat beef.)

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Moonraven,

    I simply indicated that the Mayan/Hopi prophecies have more to do with PHYSICS

    Except you have not cited anything to back up that assertion. It implies that the predictions are grounded in some understanding of physical laws. Instead, it appears that you meant not that the prophecies relied on physics or other testable evidence, but that there would be volcanoes and such destroying things.

    While that describes a physical cause of the destruction, it is not physics in any causative sense. Where will the volcanoes and earthquakes be? How big will they get? And why there and then?

    I could say “the world will be destroyed by an asteroid in 2012″, but that would not be physics unless I could support the claim with some evidence — such as pointing to an actual planet-killer asteroid in the proper orbit to actually hit us in 2012.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Marthe,

    Now, that we’re all sure that YOU didn’t write them (what a relief!), could you give out a link to some of the Hopi or Mayan prophecies that inform YOUR thinking. Curious Jews want to know…

  • moonraven

    Ruvy, You guys need to use google.

    Sean, I have already indicated that:

    1. You do not read well.

    2. That I don’t care one whit about your beliefs.

    And here’s a freebie:

    I have never even said that I believe in the Mayan/Hopi prophecies.

    Go chew on somebody else’s wing.

    I am going to lunch.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    That’s what I get for talking to trolls.

  • moonraven

    No, that’s what you get for deciding to BE a troll.

    Not very good at it, are you….

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    It’s amazing to me that BCers are content to accept this EO with such nonchalance and then devolve into the customary kindergarten spitball fights.

    Sean says:
    What more would you have the man do? He cited the various authorities, the laws in question, etc. That is precisely what you’ve asked for.

    If you disagree with his interpretation, please explain your disagreement. I’ve looked at (and linked to) both the EO and the underlying law, and everything seems quite plainly legit.

    It’s like a neocon scam of bait and switch: the congress passes a law and POTUS restates it. Edited, no doubt, to suit its purposes.

    It doesn’t MATTER that POTUS cites the underlying law. It doesn’t even matter that the EO proceeds from the underlying law. What matters is: what law do the police cite when they arrest a person or seize his property? Do they cite the underlying law or do they cite the EO? If the underlying law, then what purpose does the EO serve?

    If the underlying law is cited, then the EO serves no purpose, so it should simply be thrown away as redundant. Right now.

    If the EO is cited then every accused has recourse to challenge his arrest as not being valid because it is not based on passed law.

    Do you really think that the POTUS is happily making such a loophole available to miscreants?

    I don’t think so. I think that it’s POTUS declaring that they have a right to edit laws passed by Congress, which it does not. This brings back the controversy of ‘signing statements’, wherein this POTUS decides which parts of a congressional law, if any, he will enforce. Now the whole precedent of the SS is based on a POTUS foreseeing that some part of a law may be unconstitutional so he reserves execution until SCOTUS rules on it. Do you know of ANY such reservation that POTUS has put to SCOTUS for a constitutional test?

    The SS, as practiced by this POTUS, is effectively a lineitem veto, with no chance for congress to override that veto. Wow! That is enormous power!

    Now if you add to that the power of POTUS to rewrite any law passed by congress, you have completely superseded the constitutional role of congress. Send them home, stop paying their bloated salaries, and in particular, cutoff their glamorous benefits, like healthcare and pensions! Send them back to the General Population to struggle with the rest of us. they won’t even be able to get those high-paying lobbyist jobs with no congress left to bribe.

    What we then have left is a government of only POTUS and SCOTUS, and since SCOTUS is unelected (appointed, in fact, by various POTUS) the population of the USA is no longer represented.

    We then have a dictatorship of POTUS, reinforced by a SCOTUS which he/they have appointed who has unlimited power. Gee, just like Russia under Stalin, or Cuba under Castro (and Batista before him). As well as many other dictatorships.

    Aren’t you glad to be sovietized by these people of the faux republican party who Dave celebrates as lovers of Liberty?

    Wake up Dave! Come to the defense of your beloved mentors, Krystoff, Krauthamer, etc. Snap out of that stupor you live in while awaiting some smell of something that your necon masters might find offensive.

    What say you, o Dave Nalle, lover of republican liberty?

    The rest of you can go back to rolling spitballs.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    The EO, in this case, is simply the President serving notice that he is invoking his powers in the underlying law, and giving the reasons, legal authority and operational specifics for so doing.

    EOs have been used for this purpose forever.

    Specific criticism, rather than generalized suspicion, would be really helpful.

  • http://www.the100thhuman.com Chris

    So how will WE write it? How shall it read when we look back on December 21, 2012? We certainly have the elements in place to destroy ourselves. The planet has experienced cataclysmic events in its history – polar shifts, ice ages, etc. No one really knows. What the Mayan’s meant with their End-Count calendar will always be up for speculation. It fires the imagination, for sure. SOooo let’s write it like we want it. That is what Chris Fenwick did in the #1 Visionary Novel: “the 100th human.” You choose…

  • moonraven

    Chris,

    If the prophecy is true, I would guess that it’s highly likely that you won’t be writing anything about Dec. 21, 2012….