Republicans seem to be in a meltdown. What produces bursts of enthusiasm in some partisan strongholds comes across as arrogant lunacy when exposed to the light of rational thought. What exactly did Karl Rove hope to accomplish by his ridiculous remarks in NYC Wednesday night? This is supposed to be a really smart guy; he must have had something in mind. Or has this administration reached a point where it believes its own spin and feels sure others will always fall for it?
Unfortunately, some of this nonsense does indeed resonate with the radical right, but Mr. Rove may have overstepped this time by suggesting that “Democrats had responded weakly to 9/11” wanting instead of preparing for war “to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers.” (NY Times, 6/23/05) In what public forum were such notions expressed? Were liberals of any kind, but especially New York liberals, meek and unresponsive as their city was savaged by the 9/11 attackers?
People in the throes of party loyalty may make excuses or even agree with Mr. Rove, but you know what most Americans really hate – – being lied to, and being treated as if they were idiots. As has been said, “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time”. This administration operates on the theory that an entire nation can be played for fools forever. And while Rove’s remarks are really not worth discussing, they are an indication of just how far off track these people are. Surely the vast center of both parties and indeed the nation will reject such irrational posturing.
And in another curious effort that challenges the full faith and credibility of the government there’s a proposal to resuscitate some aspect of private accounts by allowing workers to take a share of the Social Security surplus and invest it in their name – – actually in Treasuries, the same instruments in which workers’ contributions are currently invested. It’s all very confusing because its sponsors claim the new plan would keep Congress from using the ‘Trust Fund’ for other purposes, but not right away – -kind of a new version of the old bait and switch scam. And remember recently when the administration told us there wasn’t really a surplus and that the Treasuries were just non-negotiable I.O.U.s? Now, apparently it’s there for the taking.
In terms of prioritizing government’s agenda, federal law enforcement was active in California as agents from Drug enforcement, the IRS and the Secret Service raided numerous sites where marijuana was either in use or being sold. While some targets may have been centers for questionable drug use, there’s something distressing about highly-trained drug agents tracking down doctors who prescribed, and private citizens who were using, marijuana for medical purposes, even if the Supreme Court ruled that states may not legalize a substance that is illegal on the federal level. It is unsettling to realize that agents could raid a doctor’s office in Sacramento and make off with his medical records without regard for issues of privacy or doctor-patient privilege. Remember how difficult it was to obtain the medical records of Rush Limbaugh, that darling of the right wing, in the matter of his abuse of the prescription drug, Oxycontin?
It might be an interesting experiment to see what would happen if millions of Americans grew one marijuana plant in their backyards as a gesture of protest against this gross invasion of privacy and egregious misuse of federal monies. On the other hand perhaps we should be encouraged that the Secret Service has so much time on its hands it can afford to spend it invading homes and doctors’ offices instead of chasing down spies and terrorists.

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