Bush Power Grab Since 9/11 by Jeff Demers & Sherwood Ross

Dandelion Salad

by Jeff Demers and Sherwood Ross
Global Research, May 22, 2008

Scholar Urges Candidates Debate Role of President’s Usurpation of Power

President Bush’s usurpation of power since 9/11 was termed “rapacious,” “predatory,” and “extra-Constitutional,” by presidential scholar Michael Genovese, director of the Institute for Leadership Studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.

Genovese said the “Unitary Theory” of the executive espoused by the Bush White House “is a very strange and ahistorical notion that says, ‘In a crisis all power gravitates to the president. No one, not the courts, not the Congress can interfere with the president and in effect, the president is the state.”

“That ahistorical view runs contrary to everything that we find in the Framers,” Genovese said. “For the president to say that he has all the authority he needs to do all he had to do without Congress, without the courts, is simply dead wrong. He may be the decider but he’s not the only decider.”

Genovese urged the candidates for the White House discuss their views on the nature of the presidency.

He said the Framers’ intention “was to get away from the rule of one man that they just fought a revolution to overthrow, and so the Framers invented a rule of law system, under a separation of powers, with checks and balances, under a constitution, and they invented an office, the president, who was to preside, not to govern, but to preside.”

The system they created was primarily concerned “about protecting freedom and liberty,” Genovese said, “not about the efficient use of power. That left very little room for the heroic leadership so many of us today yearn for and expect of our presidents.”

“A powerful presidency can solve some of our problems but just as easily, a powerful presidency can become the chief problem we need to solve,” he warned.

Genovese called for “a national conversation about what we want the presidency to be than simply by default to take whomever is in the White House and hand them a blank check and say ‘take care of it.’ That way lies madness.”

The presidential scholar said this type of conversation is something “we’re not getting in this presidential race…a national debate on the future of presidential power so that we can choose the kind of presidency we want and not have an imperial presidency thrust into our laps without any real reflection or choice.”

Genovese said that external circumstances can impact the nature of the presidency. “In normal times, the separation of powers looms large. In crises or emergency times, the separation of power is small, diminished, and recedes.” On September 10th, 2001, he said, “who would have thought that George Bush and Dick Cheney would be so incredibly powerful?”

“There was nothing in the cards that predicted it except the 9/11 attack and then they just drove the tank through the Constitution,” Genovese said.

Genovese made his comments in a keynote address to a conference on “Presidential Powers in America” at the Massachusetts School of Law at Andover April 26th.

Genovese, a fellow of Queens College, Oxford, is the author of 16 books, including “The Power of the American Presidency: 1798-2000”(Oxford University Press). He is a past president of the Presidency Research Group of the American Political Science Assn.

The Massachusetts School of Law at Andover is dedicated to providing an affordable, quality education to minorities and students from financially disadvantaged backgrounds who would not otherwise be able to afford a legal education and enter the profession of law.

Further Information: Jeff Demers at MSL demerse@mslaw.edu or Sherwood Ross, media consultant to MSL, at sherwoodr1@yahoo.com

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© Copyright Jeff Demers, Global Research, 2008
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One thought on “Bush Power Grab Since 9/11 by Jeff Demers & Sherwood Ross

  1. The founding fathers, and all who freely laid down their lives in order to preserve this nation and it’s constitution would now be turning in their graves if today they could see that all was for not.
    I would think if there were spirits in the here after that they would haunt the bastards who have and are steeling the next generations freedoms away from them.
    Why! Why in God’s good name are the people allowing Bush, Chaney, Rumsfield and the rest to be getting away with what their doing?
    Did not Bush lie to us when he said the reason that was needed to go to war against Iraq was due to weapons of mass distraction?
    Is that not a breach of his oath of office?And if in fact that is a fact, could Bush not be brought up on criminal charges?
    please tell us what were missing here, for i for one surly can’t see or understand it, not for the life of me can I.
    The powers to be are committing crimes that if any other person were doing just a small fraction of what this crew is doing would be sitting behind bars for life.
    Why have we not heard anything in the media about Bush Jr. buying nearly one hundred thousand acres in South America, or the Bush family ties with the Bin laden family?
    We have been living high and mighty these past sixty plus years, now were being sent down this slippery slope, falling fast as a society into the depths of despair.
    America has lost it’s way, and now the chickens are coming home to roost.
    We call ourselves a Christian nation, while holding hands with the devil, believing we could play both sides of the isle and somehow come out ahead, that no one would take notice, oh what fools we’ve been played for.
    Don’t you believe that it’s now time to wake up and face the hard cold facts while there is yet still time to do so!
    If someone were yelling at the top of their voice, with all the power in their lungs, warning you as your attention is diverted while standing in the middle of the railroad tracks that a train was coming, and coming fast, yelling to get off now, tell me, would you?
    Or would you just think the person or persons were some sort of conspiracy theorist and continue to ignore their warning?
    The warning has been sounded, the next move is yours to make, make it before the train arrives, for then it will be to late.
    Can you smell the smoke from it’s engine, can you feel the rumbling of the tracks! Tell me, can you!
    Can you tell me what that strange inward feeling your feeling is, can you?

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