Sunday, February 15, 2009

Dear Anonymous

Normally I don't do a lot of replies to comments, but this post prompted anonymous to comment:

I love that the republicans are so quick to resort to treason when things don't go their way.

So anon, I've got a couple of questions for you.

Was it treason when the New York Times to disclosed the agreements between the United States Government and the corporation running the SWIFT program, thereby alerting terrorist groups there finances were being watched?

When Sean Penn, a private citizen to meet with Saddam Hussein the head of state of a country which was an avowed enemy of the United States, was that treason?

When protesters attempted to block the port of Tacoma to keep equipment from reach United States military personnel engaged in combat operations... treason?

It's alright if you argue that none of those cases were treason, that every American citizen is a free and sovereign individual, and has a God-given right to stand up to what they see as a tyrannical government - I would agree with you.

Anonymous, you are aware that above individual liberty exists because the men who wrote the constitution didn't just cobble it together out of scraps found in history books. They all agreed on certain bedrock principles - principles which were inspired, radical, and almost untried in all the bloody history of the world. They could could have played it safe - created a king, and a peerage, and a parliament like every other nation of the time, yet chose instead to sail the new nation into uncharted waters.

The most radical of their ideas was the concept of enumerated powers - unless an act was on the list of things the constitution said could be done, the government could not do it. If everyone in the country wanted something not otherwise allowed, they would have to amend the constitution to allow it, otherwise it was not within the power of the government to do.

No one had tried it before, and really, no one has tried it since. Yes they compromised on the evil of slavery, near fatally as it turns out, but that doesn't change the fact the founders of the United States began by forcing the people to be free. They said right from the start, "No king, no overlord, no great leader, no emperor, this government is your servant and is limited to defending the borders, treating with other governments, and collecting a few tariffs to sustain itself - other than that, you are on your own - succeed or fail; you are on your own."

A couple more questions then:

What enumerated power gives the congress of the United States the authority to mortgage my future to the tune of a trillion dollars?

What enumerated power gives the congress of the United States the authority to enforce debt obligations on generations not yet born who cannot possibly have agreed to them?

What enumerated power gives the congress of the United States the authority to hold sway over the commercial life of the nation by taking money from all of us and distributing it those they deem worthy, and withholding it from those not do deemed?

And finally, anonymous, even if you are so clever as to unravel the skein of sophistry, double talk, and back room dealing which led to here, and then place even a thin gloss of constitutionality over this execrable mess, do you believe Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Madison,, would look upon this law, this government for that matter, and be proud to claim it as a descendant of their work?

I await your reply.

Treasonously yours etc.



Anonymous said...

Sounds like your oh-so-brave anonymous commenter is ignorant of the definition of treason (by the Constitution), and of the wording of the oaths of office of those officials conservatives accuse of treason.

What else do you call it when a man entrusted with the safety and sovereignty of a nation betrays both to that nation's sworn enemies? It is a political betrayal of the nation, and it can only be called treason.

What is truly amazing is that so few are willing to say so.


Earl said...

I saw that comment, and I am still trying to find the Republicans resorting to treason - must have missed it in the news. I do remember if they call it something, long enough and loud enough they begin to believe it must be true. I like to sit quietly and look it over from several sides before I label it incorrectly and it goes in the wrong place in Dewey, for my workers will bring it back if it doesn't seem to match their understanding of the truth.

Mike said...

If this be treason, make the most of it.

jana said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jana said...

"I love that the republicans are so quick to resort to treason when things don't go their way."

Really? I love that Liberals are such weaselly little pussies that they have to leave their comments anonymously.

I had an "anonymous" commentor tell me recently to watch my language. To which I reply: "Put your name to it coward, then we can talk."

Oh, and by the way? You spell "Republicans" with a capital "R", you disrespectful douche nozzle.

Mike said...

Hi Speak Dog, thanks for stopping by. Actually, I don't capitalize party names either - I realize the rules of proper usage say I'm supposed to, but I just can't bring myself to dignify either of them with a capital letter.

Also, it looks like Anon stopped by again to add more comments to the original post - I'm going over there now to let him or her know the discussion has moved up a couple of posts, and offer an invite to join us there. I would respectfully ask everyone to refrain from tweaking Anonymous' for wishing to remain anonymous - I don't have a problem with it, and some of us are just shy.

Thanks, again for stopping by.

Anonymous said...

It seems as if dissent is no longer patriotic. In fact, most Dems I've spoken to (including my in-laws -- oy vey) are of the opinion that dissent became downright treasonous on January 20th.

jana said...

I don't have a problem with leaving an "anonymous" comment if they are stating an actual opinion. But, they only seem to forget their names when they are tossing around insults.

And, crankylitprof is right. Suddenly, dissent is no longer the highest form of patriotism. Now, we should all join together and repair the damage done by eight years of the evil Bush.

Mike said...

Crankylitprof and SpeakDog:

Yeah, that's gotten old.

You know, the insulting observation with the rhetorical fillip at the end to give it the appearance of a question, "Now that the good and ever so cool Obama is President, do you think you can overcome your hatred and vile nazi instincts and join us in actually making the world a better place?"

Spare me.

Anonymous said...

I left the February 16, 2009 2:06 AM anonymous comment on the original post. I just post anonymously on blog comments because I don't have a user name or blog or anything. I think any of us calling each other traiters is silly, so I don't really have anything to say about that.

It seems as though you're upset with at least the last 100 years of US govt policy. There was a constitutional amendment to create the income tax, which has always been a tax that fell mostly on the wealthy. (Originally it was a tax only on the wealthy). So the tax system is by definitiion constitutional, since it's in the constitution. I think our government has had the power to raise money and carry a debt more or less since the beginning of the country. You're very against Obama and this spending bill, but I think you should argue it on the merits rather than saying that the government has suddenly run amok, when there is really nothing fundamentally new here. Previous administrations for at least the last century have been doing the same thing.

Anonymous said...

By the way, I definitely have libertarian feelings myself, I just feel like it's more of an ideal than a workable political system. The point of my post is how far back would you have to go in history to actually be happy with our government? The founders never wanted us to have a standing army either, but that got thrown out the window pretty early in our country's history.

closed said...

UTDave: So ... is feeling that the 16th Amendment was a bad idea treason?

Is denying consent and cooperation treason?

Is dissent treason?

You did throw the treason bomb out ... so, please define treason for us ... I am wondering if your definition would have fit any of the nutroots during the Bush admin.

Anonymous said...

Hey - great discussion, great blog. I came over here on crankylitprof's recommendation, so it's her fault...

I expect treason to be constantly redefined in the coming years, to be honest.

scotaku said...

Treason, or sedition? Neither, actually, in the case of worrying about who's going to pay for all this mess. Mrs. Pelosi, who seems to be aiding and abetting an enemy force, is probably closer to treason than Mike (great blog, btw), or others who feel that this new administration isn't doing a great job. And since I don't see anyone working to incite an overthrow of said administration, I think sedition is off the table, too.

Anonymous said...

I didn't make the treason comment, just to be clear, that was someone else.

Anonymous said...

Mike, not to detract from your point, which is right on target, but "principal" is defined as "the most important" and can be used as both a noun and an adjective; it usually refers to a person (principal investor, principal of the school, etc.). "Principle" is only used as a noun, and refers to a rule, doctrine, or law.

Robert Langham said...

I'm a free human being alive on planet Earth I'm mad as hell.