George W. Bush, the man who signed the execution warrants of more people than any man before him, found it in his heart to pardon someone -his Vice-President's Chief of Staff. He commuted a 2.5 year gaol sentence *as the appeal was happening*. Libby had just been denied bail.
For a man who insists on respect for the law, he shows an incredible contempt for it.
Practise what you preach, Mr President. And allow me to remind you of a document whose 231st anniversary we celebrate today - a document that you feel free to abide by only when it suits your purposes:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
With men like Karl Rove and Michael Chertoff, your administration has been 'destructive of these ends' for 6.5 years. But truly, if you want to understand a classroom, you look to the teacher. If you want to understand the dynamics of a religious house, you look to the abbot, prior or provost. If you want to understand a government, you look to its leader. All roads lead back to you, Mr. Bush.
On that note, I stand beside Mr. Olbermann, and add my voice to his as he declares:
I accuse you, Mr. Bush, of lying this country into war.
I accuse you of fabricating in the minds of your own people, a false implied link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11.
I accuse you of firing the generals who told you that the plans for Iraq were disastrously insufficient.
I accuse you of causing in Iraq the needless deaths of 3,586 of our brothers and sons, and sisters and daughters, and friends and neighbors. [and countless Iraqis who only wished to live their lives out with normal day following normal day. -I.]
I accuse you of subverting the Constitution, not in some misguided but sincerely-motivated struggle to combat terrorists, but to stifle dissent.
I accuse you of fomenting fear among your own people, of creating the very terror you claim to have fought.
I accuse you of exploiting that unreasoning fear, the natural fear of your own people who just want to live their lives in peace, as a political tool to slander your critics and libel your opponents.
I accuse you of handing part of this Republic over to a Vice President who is without conscience, and letting him run roughshod over it.
And I accuse you now, Mr. Bush, of giving, through that Vice President, carte blanche to Mr. Libby, to help defame Ambassador Joseph Wilson by any means necessary, to lie to Grand Juries and Special Counsel and before a court, in order to protect the mechanisms and particulars of that defamation, with your guarantee that Libby would never see prison, and, in so doing, as Ambassador Wilson himself phrased it here last night, of becoming an accessory to the obstruction of justice.On this day, 231 years ago, American colonists took the brave step of separating themselves from a reign of tyranny.
Today, let us separate ourselves from another.
It is time for the American people to speak out - and to quote a more modern American, Martina McBride:
Talk about your revolution
It's Independence Day...
Let freedom ring
Let the white dove sing
Let the whole world know that today is a day of reckoning -
Let the weak be strong
Let the right be wrong
roll the stone away
let the guilty pay
It's Independence Day.