I don’t agree with a lot of what the current administration is doing. While I don’t necessarily believe that G. W. Bush is evil like Mr. Burns and wishes to bring the US and England together under IncSoc, I do agree with some congressmen that he has set some perilous precedents if congress just leaves things alone. For example, as many jounalists and bloggers have pointed out, one of the key themes in 1984 is perpetual war. Because Oceana is always at war, people are willing to tolerate a loss of freedoms and a worse quality of life than they had prior to World War II. I agree that we have certain rights afforded to the Executive Branch during war-time. However, If Bush can do whatever he pleases because we are at war and we are always at war, then he can always shirk the constitution.
Again, I’m not blaming the administration of purposely doing this, rather our government likes to operate on the concept of precedent. Congress says he doesn’t have such sweeping rights because of the precedent of Truman vs the Steel companies when he couldn’t take away steel plants for war. The President claims he can do as he pleases due to the precedent set by Lincoln, Truman, and others. So if congress sits idly by while Bush asserts power, we set a bad precedent.
However, unlike a lot of the doomsday prophets of the newspapers, I believe that our system is not broken. Every day I am happy with our wonderful governemt system. The fact that I can write this on my blog without fear of censorship, like they have in China. That Congress can challenge the President without fearing for their lives, this is a testament to the great system we have.
I think it is right for newspapers to question the concept of perpetual war and the consequences upon presidential powers. It is also right for the Executive Branch to push back. Otherwise, congress could make them out to be a useless branch of government. In the end, be glad that thoughcrime does not yet exist. There is not yet a Big Brother.