Friday, November 17, 2006

Revisiting "the I Word"

Last night we had a member bring up the infamous "I Word" again....the one that generates so much controversy within the organization. The "I Word" is, of course, IMPEACHMENT".

This member worked tirelessly for his belief that George W. Bush should be impeached and single-handedly got the issue on two ballots for the November election. Unfortunately both issues were defeated by huge margins. But this member believes in what he's doing. He's undeterred and will try again.

I think most of us would be surprised to know that the issue garners the same kind of reaction anytinme it's brough up in any Democratic circles and it is usually the subject of hot-tempered debate. One of the cooler heads in the debate, however, is a very thoughtful poster on two other blogs who I admire for his research, logic and wisdom. He goes by the name of H2Oman. And he writes on a blog here. On November 15, he takcled the subject of impeachment again. Here are a few snippets:

Those opposed to the concept of impeaching Bush administration officials tended to express some common concerns. The first was that impeachment is all about "revenge." This is a weak position that deserves no serious consideration. If there is a bank-robber or a murderer in your community, you want the legal system to prosecute him/her. You don’t wring your hands in anxiety, fearful that the criminal might get mad.

It has also been stated, numerous times, that impeachment would require investigations first. I would hope that we all could agree that in the history of the United States, there has not been a single impeachment of any official that was not based upon an investigation. Pro-impeachment people seem more aware of this than the anti-impeachment folks.

The last anti-impeachment point is that we have more important things to deal with now. That’s an interesting thought Let’s look closer. What was the #1 issue of concern to voters across the country in last week’s elections? The war in Iraq. Survey after survey showed that the war in Iraq is increasingly unpopular. Republican candidates who recognized that voters associated President Bush with the war were not in a hurry to have George campaign for them.

H2Oman certainly makes good points about impeachment but he also knows the limitations. In the end he recognizes that we must concentrate on the weak point or blocking point and concentrate all our efforts on that. He suggests that the "lies that got us into Iraq" is the weak point upon which we should concentrate our grass-roots efforts (for investigations, obviously) and that will lead to the blockage "VP Cheney", who he believes will be gladly dumped overboard by the Republican Party.

H2Oman also talks about his posts and surveys on another blog, but I'll let you find those links yourself.

What I find most interesting about his post on impeachment is that he seems to have thought this through at great length and sets forth a process as well as a goal. He understands the risks. Indeed, he realizes that even the investigations that are presently being discussed will lead to Republican hostilities and political posturing but believes we should go forward regardlessly. In some reagards it's like I've been preaching to some of our Democratic Office-holders who feel they have to modify their positions on concealed carry and weapons control in order to placate the NRA: It doesn't matter how you try to appease these folks, they're going to come after you anyway. So do what's right instead of what you think will appease....same thing here....

If we conduct simple and normal "Oversight Hearings" the Repubs will attack us anyway. If we convene investigations even into the most benighn of the the allegations, we'll be attacked anyway. We might as well proceed with what is "right" as opposed to what is expedient.

Let the investigations begin. Let them lead where they may.

Oh yeah, one more point.

We've got to be able to "walk and chew gum at the same time". That is, we have to be able to push our agenda forward and conduct the investigations at the same time. We have an agenda. Minimum wage, health care, Iraq...we have taken the "megaphone" away from the Repubs and we'd better damned well use it now that we have it.


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