Thursday, October 19, 2006

Your Words Are Lies, Sir

'Beginning of the end of America'

Keith Olbermann:
Special comment on the Military Commissions Act

We have lived as if in a trance.

We have lived as people in fear.

And now — our rights and our freedoms in peril — we slowly awake to learn that we have been afraid of the wrong thing.

Therefore, tonight have we truly become the inheritors of our American legacy.

For, on this first full day that the Military Commissions Act is in force, we now face what our ancestors faced, at other times of exaggerated crisis and melodramatic fear-mongering:

A government more dangerous to our liberty, than is the enemy it claims to protect us from.

* * *

“With the distance of history, the questions will be narrowed and few: Did this generation of Americans take the threat seriously, and did we do what it takes to defeat that threat?”

Wise words.

And ironic ones, Mr. Bush.

Your own, of course, yesterday, in signing the Military Commissions Act.

You spoke so much more than you know, Sir.

Sadly — of course — the distance of history will recognize that the threat this generation of Americans needed to take seriously was you.

We have a long and painful history of ignoring the prophecy attributed to Benjamin Franklin that “those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

But even within this history we have not before codified the poisoning of habeas corpus, that wellspring of protection from which all essential liberties flow.

You, sir, have now befouled that spring.

You, sir, have now given us chaos and called it order.

You, sir, have now imposed subjugation and called it freedom.

For the most vital, the most urgent, the most inescapable of reasons.

And — again, Mr. Bush — all of them, wrong.

* * *

This President now has his blank check.

He lied to get it.

He lied as he received it.

* * *

Your words are lies, Sir.

They are lies that imperil us all.

* * *

Habeas corpus? Gone.

The Geneva Conventions? Optional.

The moral force we shined outwards to the world as an eternal beacon, and inwards at ourselves as an eternal protection? Snuffed out.

These things you have done, Mr. Bush, they would be “the beginning of the end of America.”

* * *

For the most vital, the most urgent, the most inescapable of reasons.

And doubtless, Sir, all of them — as always — wrong.

Video and transcript at Crooks and Liars.

All rights reserved.
Disclaimer And Comment Policy