DrMyers’s Blog

May 7, 2009

Bad Advice to the President: Will Lawyers Pay the Piper?

 

Velma Sanders (My Grandmother) b.1917

Velma Sanders (My Grandmother) b.1917

I can remember running and playing with friends in the country.  Growing up in a small town (Goodlow, Texas; population 312) neighbors and family were plenty, and dirt roads were vast.  Sometimes I can remember climbing down in the creek bed, and following it all the way out by my Aunt Emma’s house (1912- 2002), after which the journey home would began, and there was always a tough decision to make.  We could go straight home or we could go home…but with detours.  Now this individual decision was made with deep thought and consultations with the guys, which eventually lead to mischief, causing something memorable to happen and we would then go home.

 

 

On one occasion, I was with my cousin, and we planned to do the usual, but Aunt Emma instructed us differently.  I will never forget it; Aunt Emma was from the “old-school” and she was about 5’0 (if she was an inch), and always wore an apron.  She made it perfectly clear, that if we were to go away from the house that we wouldn’t stop by Uncle Jay’s her brother (1908-2000).   See, Uncle Jay and Aunt Carrie (Married 1935) were great cooks from the good old days!  Typically, when us kids would stop by there, we would fill up on fresh cake and a big glass of milk, which consequently would ruin us for dinner.   Well, my cousin and I set out, and as we were headed back, we decided (after much deliberation) to just pay a little visit to Uncle Jay and Aunt Carrie.  Sure enough, we ate to our hearts content, and then walked back to Aunt Emma’s.  On the way home, I told him to make sure that he didn’t mention the whole “dropping by Uncle Jay’s” and he stated with a grin, “You know I won’t say nothing!”.  Now, little did we know, Trey had left an article of clothing there at Uncle Jay’s, and Aunt Carrie thought it would be responsible to call Aunt Emma, and let her know!  Aunt Carrie told Aunt Emma, “ not to scold Trey for losing the article of clothing, that it was safe with her.”

This reminds me of the current status in which the Bush Administration and their lawyers are in.  Being aware of torture as a means of interrogation used by governments to attain information from Prisoners, the US signed an agreement with the United Nations stating that we would not engage in torture; after consulting with their lawyers, the Bush Administration used a technique called Water boarding ( which was used during WWII on our soldiers, and a technique we deemed as torture at that time) and, according to Condaleeza Rice, if the President approved…it wasn’t breaking the Law (just like Nixon).  When asked by the American Public, we were told the truth…but not the whole truth.

As reported by the Wall Street Journal, at the center of the frenzy are four detailed legal analyses, “The memos, written by Justice Department lawyers in 2002 and 2005 and recently declassified and released, read as you would expect them to. The individuals writing them were reflecting their own interpretation of the law, their own policy views, and quite possibly the policy preferences of their bosses.”  

This problem is a clear representation of what happens when one branch of government, tries to act without proper checks and balances.  Clearly, this method of interrogation was not to be decided upon by just lawyers who were advising the president, or interpreting the law (which is the job of the Supreme Court).  As a result, being that the Executive Branch took it upon their selves to act independently, our reputation was tarnished both at home and abroad.  The question which is now being asked by many, is if the lawyers who gave this advice to the administration, will be prosecuted; or will anyone else from the Bush Administration pay some sort of price if they are found to have broken the law.  

Well, to answer that question, I should finish my story from earlier. .. 

As we walked into the 6 room house, the questions began, and we played it cool.  We told her everything that we did, save the whole Uncle Jay thing.  As I began to walk out, Aunt Emma grabbed me, and said a simple phrase (after giving me a good pop)…,”I’m going to call Velma (my grandmother b.1917) and tell her what you did.”  Now I knew Granny (as I called her) did not want me going over to Uncle Jay’s, and at this point, I was simply scared to walk home.

When I stepped onto the porch, my Grandmother met me there, and she didn’t just talk to me.  She whooped my behind, and told me that “grown folk” make rules for good reasons.  And if I decided to break those rules, I’d have to “Pay the Piper”, just as I did by taking the spanking.

The UN made rules, we broke them knowingly (especially sine we hired lawyers to help us go around the agreement) and those responsible must pay the consequences.  

 

As stated by a great American General:

 

 

“A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.”

~ Dwight D Eisenhower  

December 2, 2008

Your Last Impression: To My Dear Friend

It was my plan to take a few days off to observe the Thanksgiving Holidays, and instead of blogging, spend some much needed time with my friends and family.  Wednesday Night, I met up with some of my closest friends at the local watering hole, and had the best time of my life.  On Thanksgiving Morning, my family poured in, and again I was reminded that no one tells taller tales than Texans!  We laughed, ate, slept, and ate again…truly an American Experience was enjoyed down in the Texas back country.  Friday morning, I carried on the tradition of “left-overs”, and caught up on some much needed “me time”.  I took for granted the lack of phone calls, due to “Black Friday” and the first official day that marks the beginning of the Christmas Holidays.  Saturday morning changed my feelings about the whole holiday.

As I had neglected to do on Thanksgiving, I decided to read the local news paper and catch up on “local news”.  Last Sunday, I was asked by my Pastor to give an overview of my experience while working on the Obama Campaign, and I thought that by tying in local news, and how the election had already effected the way some things are done here at home, my message would be better received.  I was not expecting to read a piece of devastating news.  One of my dear friends I met with Wednesday Night, died in a fatal car accident as he left our meeting.  Because my new number was not published, and I was trying to keep away from communication from people other than family, I was left grasping the fact that I lost a great friend through an impersonal source…the newspaper.  Not typically startled, I was totally taken aback, remembering the conversation I just had with him, inviting him to spend Thanksgiving with my family, if he would’ve been lonely or without family.  I recalled our “dance moves” in the corner of the packed bar, while waiting for more ladies to grace the smoke filled room.  There was no doubt in my mind that he loved me as a dear friend, and that he knew I felt the same way.  Sadly, there was no doubt in my mind that I would see him the next day, or the following weekend, alive, well, and waiting for the next big laugh that we both could stand.  The latter did not happen. 

Adam left a lasting impression on me, that made me glad to consider myself his friend.  I wonder, can this feeling be translated into government.  Are our representatives truly “Honored” or “Happy” to serve us, and be our Representatives in Washington.  

Right now in the State of Georgia, a Senate race is being fought with as much vigor as they had in the “Good Ole’ Days” when the Bull Moose Party was alive and well.  This race could determine, whether or not the Democrats efforts to become “Filibuster Proof”, will end a theory held by Republicans.  That if Democrats control both houses, and the white house, that America will became a Liberal Hell to live in.  But what is Conservative, and what is Liberal.  Lately, the lines have been blurred so, that one might be confused, who, or where in the fight you stand.  

Abraham Lincoln wrote, that conservatism is “adherence to the old and tried, against the new and untried.”  Something odd coming from the man who wrote the Emancipation Proclamation!  Liberalism is a broad class of political philosophies that consider individual liberty to be the most important political goal. When reminded of these two principles, one can see a battle between the two methods of thought, that will be an ever endless battle for right…within these two methods.  The last election demonstrated these concepts whole heartily.  But my question still remains, are our Representatives, who are to represent our places within these schools of thought, thankful, and or appreciative, to have the honor of working for us…the people.

Today in headlines across America, President Bush was reported as stating that he was “unprepared” for war.  While at the same time admitting the people voted for Barack Obama mainly because of his communication skills, which apparently is a change from what he has been capable of doing.  He stated,  “And I’m sure some people voted for Barack Obama because of me. I think most people voted for Barack Obama because they decided they wanted him to be in their living room for the next four years explaining policy.”

North of us, an Alaskan Senator made a statement that truly spoke to the heart of this conversation.  “If she wants to be president, I don’t think the way to the presidency is a short stop in the United States Senate,”  Senator Murkowski stated in regards of Gov. Palin.  I agree wholly.  The stop that should be made to any seat whether as dog catcher or the national pooper scooper, is through the hearts and minds of the American People.  I feel that Barack Obama did speak to the hearts of the American People, properly articulating his desire to represent us honorably.  Sadly, I do not feel as if that “Concept” has “Trickled Down” as of yet.  Who knows…maybe I’m wrong.

This week I was introduced to Linda Grover.  A writer, battling cancer, and working on a wonderful project called Global Family Day.  From the website you can garner exactly what impression we should be having towards one another; ” On January 1, at the start of the United Nations Year of the Planet, let’s all gather at our electronic hearth and celebrate life on earth together. Lets replace hate and hunger with peace and sharing, and begin to unite our global family”.  I encourage all of you do visit this website:  www.gfday.org, and speak to your representatives whether they serve on a local or national level, and have them adopt the philosophy of this project.  

As for Adam, he is in a much better place right now, surrounded by people who loved him and have gone on before him .  As for his friends, we are left with fun memories filled with laughter and smiles.  The impression he left on us, I would not trade for the world.  I feel blessed to know that I was able to play a small part in his Big Life during the 26 years he spent with us.  Let us hope that our Representatives can leave us with a similar impression…for they never know, the work that they do today, could be their last impression!

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