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AdLib On April - 24 - 2013

burning-constitution

They literally wrap themselves in flags (at least flag pins) but if you were to make a checklist of all of America’s founding and ongoing principles, as a democracy and society, you’d find a substantial Republican checklist of things they despise.

It’s kind of sad that the public is unfazed by how anti-American the GOP has become, we almost expect it to be expressed on any issue or after any event. Instead of outrage though, the reactions is more, “Yep, knew they’d say something like that.”

Here are a few basic pillars of America that Republicans adamantly oppose:

A Government of the People, By the People and For the People

The GOP made the 2012 election so much about taking the right to vote away from Americans. Make that, Americans who are less likely to vote Republican. With all facts proving that there is no issue of voter fraud that needs to be addressed, Republican governors and legislatures used an ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Counsel, aka Plutocrats R Us) devised template of legislation that required voters to show ID at polling places or be stripped of their right to vote. Legitimate studies were unanimous in illustrating that the impact of this was solely to prevent minorities, the poor, students and other Democratic-leaning voters from voting. This is about as anti-American as a political party could be, legislating away people’s right to vote…yet this campaign continues from the GOP today with no apology.

From the Republican perspective, the right to vote requires regulation because it’s dangerous to our society to have a vote in the hands of the wrong person but when it comes to stopping a gun from getting into the wrong hands, Republicans suddenly get religion over the sanctity and purity of that right alone, that it should never be regulated (despite the fact that the 2nd Amendment states that it should be “well regulated”).

In fact, Republicans believe so strongly in American Democracy, that they will stand up against a 90% majority of Americans to protect our democracy. The Republican filibuster of the watered down guns background check bill was actually a middle finger to democracy and 90% of Americans, a stark admission that they only see being in Congress as about serving themselves, their re-election and their political future. The disdain they have shown towards Americans and the betrayal of our democracy they have committed should have made them politically radioactive but thanks to the well honed and well financed marketing savvy of their corporate bosses, many just take for granted that nearly half of the Senate being puppets of the gun industry is just Washington politics.

Half of The Bill of Rights

1st Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

  • Republicans want laws establishing and enforcing Christian dogma and doctrines on all citizens no matter their religious beliefs, whether it comes to the issues of abortion, teaching evolution, gay rights, etc. Republicans in North Carolina recently tried to pass a bill declaring Christianity to be the official state religion.
  • Republicans have openly opposed the worship of religions other than Christian, primarily the Muslim religion, going so far as to campaign and try to legislate against an Islamic cultural center opening in a previously defunct building because Republicans claimed it was too close to Ground Zero in the 9/11 attacks…and apparently that made a particular zone of New York “For Christians Only”.
  • Republicans continue to attack and undermine the press by branding it “liberal”, propose that Americans lose rights for expressing religious views they oppose and were fully supportive of launching militarized police force attacks against Americans who were protesting against their government for redress in the Occupy Wall Street protests.

4th Amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

  • Republicans supported and continue to support the Bush post-9/11 policy of government spying without warrants on Americans’ emails, cell phone calls, etc. in the name of fighting terrorism.
  • Republicans support Stop and Frisk programs, mandatory drug tests for Welfare applicants, and the right of employers to spy on and have access to personal information of their employees

6th Amendment: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

  • Immediately after the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing were caught, a chorus of Republicans came out clamoring for the surviving suspect to be stripped of his 6th Amendment rights and held in Guantanamo indefinitely as an enemy combatant so information can be wrung out of him, because he shared the beliefs of groups that are enemies of America, not because he was actually a member of any such group (the law covering enemy combatants only applies to removing enemies from the battlefield so they can’t do further harm, not for purposes of interrogation).
  • Republicans oppose and have opposed criminal trials against any foreign terrorists who commit crimes in the US and want the US to keep all the prisoners at Guantanamo imprisoned indefinitely unless convicted by a military court where 6th Amendment rules don’t apply.

7th Amendment: In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

  • Republicans have promoted and legislated the widespread mandatory use of arbitration instead of jury trials over many areas and industries including health care and have passed laws that deny Americans a right to have a jury trial against their health insurance company when claims are denied.
  • Republicans promote and pass legislation limiting the ability of trial lawyers to receive payment and even work on contingency as well as install “Loser Pays” laws that threaten any citizen with paying the lawyer bills of whomever they file suit against if they lose (just because someone doesn’t win a case doesn’t always mean they weren’t wronged, it can mean they just didn’t have the evidence needed to prove what truly happened). All of these things would make it more difficult and more threatening for a citizen to file a civil suit (especially against a wealthier, more powerful person or company) while corporations would become more untouchable.

8th Amendment: Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

  • Republicans are fervent supporters of using torture whether on foreign suspects or U.S. citizens. In the most recent instance of the Boston Marathon bombing, there have been many calls from Republicans to torture Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to get information from him.
  • Republicans are the most vociferous on oppressive laws such as Three Strikes and the use of the death penalty, even expressing that the death penalty be used in cases where no one was murdered.
  • Republicans support the use of Black Sites that the CIA used to torture terrorism suspects with such torture tactics as waterboarding.

One could also make the case that Republicans oppose the 2nd Amendment  because they oppose what it says in full, that is:

2nd Amendment: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Despite what the ideologues in the GOP and on the Supreme Court have said, the use of commas between the phrase “A well regulated Militia” and “the right of the people to keep and bear arms” connect these statements, they are not separate thoughts or concepts. So if Republicans did not oppose the complete 2nd Amendment, they would have to support that gun ownership is to be well regulated.

The cherry on top of this anti-American Republican sundae is how they have and are trying to strangle our democracy and government in the bathtub (The actual Grover Norquist quote: “Our goal is to shrink government to the size where we can drown it in a bathtub.”). Republicans support the Citizens United decision, the “personhood” of corporations and the unlimited billions they can now spend to try to buy elections. Republicans use the excuse of cutting deficits to destroy Social Security and Medicare and slash programs for the poor, infrastructure repair, etc. Meanwhile, proving that they don’t truly see the deficit as a crisis that needs to be reversed at any cost, they oppose closing tax loopholes that allow the wealthiest to escape paying taxes…and thus paying down our deficit.

Then of course there is their blocking of all progress and most functionality in the Congress and our government.

Republicans may say they love America but instead of a hug, they’ve got America in a choke hold.

Written by AdLib

My motto is, "It is better to have blogged and lost hours of your day, than never to have blogged at all."

16 Responses so far.

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  1. choicelady says:

    There is a bill up in the CA legislature to penalize large corporations who dump their employees into Medi-Cal rather than pay for health insurance. To do that, they also have to pay such LOW wages they qualify for Medi-Cal in the first place.

    These corporations defend their right of personhood, holler via lobbyists against welfare, but deny ANY “personal responsibility” for their actions in exploiting taxpayer paid for systems for their own advantage.

    Anyone in CA who feels so moved to support AB 880 (Jimmy Gomez-Los Angeles) can contact the chair of Assembly Health Committee, Richard Pan (Sacramento) at 916-319-2009 to urge passage of this bill. Gomez’s LA office is 213-483-5151 to thank him for closing the “Wal-Mart Loophole” and strengthening our safety net finances.

    Corporate personhood did NOT exist in the Constitution prior to Citizens United. The justices drew that conclusion from case law that, like their decision, was predicated on a CLERK’s summary of the 1886 Santa Clara County v Southern Pacific Railroad decision in which the sitting SCOTUS did NOT come to that conclusion but the clerk thought it had. So from a clerk’s notes, our corporate use of the 14th Amendment has progressed. Is that stupid or what?

    So now if we have decided “corporations are people, too, my friend” then let them pull up their big boy socks and act as they always tell others to do -- assume your responsibilities. Give decent wages, pay good benefits, assume your obligations under law, and stop weaseling out of your duties. And never EVER shove your chores off on others!

    In other words -- start acting like the Americans you claim to admire instead of, oh, the Romneys.

  2. MurphTheSurf3 says:

    Ad Lib….this is really brilliant. I wish you posted at HP, or one of the other big platforms.

    May I at list have permission to take what you did here and boil into down to 500 words to post at HP (with credit to you and the Planet).

    You really capture the essence of the argument against the GOP. They stand in opposition to that which they claim to be their foundation.

    Brilliant, really.

    This needs to be read by many.

    • glenn says:

      Good morning, Murph, and AdLib--Murph, have you posted this yet on HP? I’d love to see it there, too. AdLib--brilliant writing. I kept thinking , that the righties are adamant about those second amendment rights, but not so much with all of the other amendments. For “constitution loving” people, they sure love to mangle it. Anyway, Ad, enjoyed the article.

      And, Murph, when you post this on HP, would you let us here on the Planet know by posting here?

      Thanks to you both. If it hadn’t been for Murph posting on HP, and recommending this site to me, I would never have found all the wonderful folks here on the Planet! So, AdLib, hopefully if Murph posts this on HP, more folks will also find out about the Planet.

    • AdLib says:

      Cheers Murph, thanks for the very kind words!

      You’re welcome to provide a brief summary and/or excerpt of this article on HP with a link to the full article here.

      As you know, we do like to encourage folks to visit The Planet and join in the conversations here so sharing a taste of what’s being posted here is a good thing.

  3. AdLib says:

    Okay Jon Stewart, I don’t mind you reading The Planet but really, did you have to lift this whole article for your opening segment tonight?

    Actually, quite a nice coincidence that The Daily Show covered this same ground tonight!

  4. Kalima says:

    Good article and insight AdLib, as always.

    I was just reading this and thought it would go well with your post.

    A bit busy this morning but hope to get back later. See you.

    ———-

    “Are the Tsarnaevs White”?

    Apr 24, 2013 4:45 AM EDT

    “In a word, yes. But why is this so hard for Americans to grasp? Peter Beinart on our country’s long track record of conflating religion and race”.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/04/24/are-the-tsarnaevs-white.html

    • AdLib says:

      Kalima, that really throws a monkey wrench into the RW racist meme but then so did the mass killings in Newtown. The salient point was made on MSNBC today, when it’s a white Christian that mass murders, it’s one crazy person. When it’s a white or “dark skinned” Muslim, all Muslims become co-conspirators.

      I still am surprised at the blatant and somewhat oblivious racism that’s so publicly displayed in the U.S..

      • Kalima says:

        It’s unfortunate that they don’t choke on their own limitless hypocrisy, but when have they ever admitted that they were wrong about anything?

        It’s not just the U.S. AdLib, since the Tories have been in power, dozens of politicians have had to resign because of their overt, loud mouthed racism. It’s a shame those in the GOP aren’t forced to resign, but of course the GOP rarely reprimand one of their own. Perhaps it’s because they share the same views behind closed doors.

        Then I read a story like this and have to question the sanity of crackpots like this guy thinking he’s European. Nuts!!

        —-

        Riding Along With a Towson University Student’s ‘White Patrol’

        http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/04/24/mostly-noise-riding-along-with-towson-s-white-pride-safety-patrol.html

  5. AdLib says:

    This blame game crap by Republicans, trying to blame Obama and the FBI for not stopping the brothers from their independent act of terrorism, is so obvious. The unprincipled yammerer Lindsey Graham has been at the forefront of this, now trying to tie it to Benghazi! What a tool!

    So Republicans want all Muslims who criticize the US and/or believe in conspiracy theories to be watched or detained indefinitely before they commit a crime. They must be watching Minority Report and thought it was a documentary?

    Nope, it’s the anti-American character of the Republican Party.

    When we got hit on 9/11, Democrats came together with Republicans and supported the President. There was no chorus in the Dem Party rushing to blame anyone. That’s how true patriots act.

    It’s all just politics, Republicans using for political profit, the deaths and injuries of Americans from a terrorist attack that happened just over a week ago.

    Nope, they have no shame, just greed and lust for power and anything they can grab to use as a cudgel, even the recent deaths of children and innocent Americans, are just fine with them.

    • AdLib says:

      KT, haven’t seen Where the Buffalo Roam for a long time!

      • Great article Ad. It’s wonderful ammunition (no pun intended) to use against all those faux patriots on the right who yammer on and on about how Obama is trashing our constitution. Your article should shut them up post haste.

        When I first read the article, it reminded me of this scene from Where The Buffalo Roam. One of my favorite films.

        “Hit em with the 4th amendment Laz!”


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