State Secrets or Unlimited Power

“Yes, you are right–I am a moralist in disguise; it gets me into heaps of trouble when I go thrashing around in political questions.” Mark Twain


The Bush administration’s continued use of the state secrets privilege to stomp on dissent in the courts is evil. It is most often conjured up in response to allegations of criminal conduct on the part of the government. They are challenges to the present administration’s new theories of unchecked executive power.
By using the state secrets privilege the administration avoids having to give an accounting of its conduct. And if the administration continues to succeed in this-the administration will have succeeded in creating a precedent of insurmountable immunity, which can be invoked against any legal claim that the tactics and constitutional abnegations used in the “war on terror”, violates the law. The standard administration response to any plaintiff who asserted such criminal charges would be, quite simply, that it’s a secret.

The Bush administration has fought to limit scrutiny or restriction of its conduct since the war on terror began. Unless courts begin to reject his assertion, the administration may have found in the state secrets privilege, the ultimate tool for making its actions invincible to all challenges, and making us the new communist power.

President Bush’s arguments about his national security powers, and his use of ‘state secrets’ immunity threaten the concept of checks and balances, as it has been understood in America for over 200 years. Bush and his lawyers contend that the president’s powers in these matters are unlimited.

Since the war on terror is currently scheduled to run practically forever, the executive supremacy they’re asserting won’t be a temporary condition.

Write your Congressperson or Senator.