Our government has become a government of secrets. They refuse to tell the people what they are doing BECAUSE they KNOW the PEOPLE would not voluntarily AGREE to LET THEM DO IT. If the people ask, then they are told it is classified etc. The vast majority of all of this secret bs is conducted by “executive agencies” like the CIA the FBI, Homeland Security, the NSA , the military intelligence services and ON an ON. Not to mention all of the “emails” that are kept from prying eyes and all the “redacting” that goes on in 95% of all documents that they release under FOIA requests. It is undeniable that the vast majority of secrets kept by our supposed “servants” in the government are kept secret under the guise of some vague amalgam allegedly based in “executive privilege”.
Now it is IMPOSSIBLE to discuss that entire topic in one post. In fact it is impossible to discuss anything more than just a teeny tiny portion of that issue in one post. So I am going to try and talk about one little portion. (if you want some more I have discussed it here and here already, and will be discussing it more in the future.)
I am going to pull back the curtain on one of the very HEARTS of this utterly bogus supposed “constitutional claim” of executive privilege which is the BULWARK for how they keep the vast majority of secrets. I want to show you how utterly HOLLOW it is. And when I do this I will hopefully get a “bonus play” and you can see yet another example of how the branches work TOGETHER to screw WE the people.
Oh the court hides their chicanery well amongst a bunch of high sounding garbage that really wins more by simply BORING people to death rather than REASONING them to death. They baffle em with Bullsh*t as they say. The average person, as a practical matter, has ZERO chance of being able to sort through all of the distractions in what passes for “court opinions”. Even the vast majority of lawyers MISS THE PLOT most of the time and get pulled off into paths that lead nowhere.
What I want to do today is take the primary case, hell it is pretty much the ONLY REAL case in modern times to even address the issue “directly”. That case is the “Nixon” case. That is the “famous case” when the special prosecutor for Congress was trying to get certain items from the President. The prez claimed “executive privilege” and the Supremes heard the case.
Now there are a BUNCH of problems with this case that I may discuss in later articles. But today I will only focus on ONE QUESTION:
WHAT CONSTITUTIONAL BASIS DID THE COURT FIND FOR THE PRESIDENT’S CLAIM OF EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE THAT IS NOW USED TO KEEP SECRETS FROM THE PEOPLE?
Surely in a country, where the government is supposed to be subordinate to the people, and where the government is supposedly one of ONLY EXPRESS POWERS, this should be a pretty simple question to answer for the court. Because remember, the FEDS can only do something if they can POINT to a provision in the constitution that says they have the power to do it. That is the ENTIRE basis for why our system is supposedly “so great”.
So let’s see if the issue was raised, and if so, how was it “resolved” by the court, and if resolved, then WHAT WAS THE CONSTITUTIONAL BASIS THE COURT FOUND FOR THE PRIVILEGE.
After going through a bunch of distracting and eye-glazing-over-crap we come to the section in the opinion called “The claim of privilege”. Okay, looks promising. So then we wade through yet some more procedural bs about “rule 17(c), and then we get to the meat of the issue.
So it’s time to wake up people this is going to be where they screw you, lol.
In support of his claim of absolute privilege, the President’s counsel urges two grounds, one of which is common to all governments and one of which is peculiar to our system of separation of powers. The first ground is the valid need for protection of communications between high Government officials and those who advise and assist them in the performance of their manifold duties;
Bingo, this is what we’re looking for. The Prez is claiming a generalized right to have his advisers etc. be able to “advise” him in secret. So we should be expecting to find THE CENTRAL DISCUSSION FROM THE COURT RIGHT HERE. Now notice that there is a semi colon ending that quote I pulled. So here is how it continues.
the importance of this confidentiality is too plain to require further discussion.
Hold it. WHAAAT? That is NOT a typo my fellow inmates. That is the LEVEL of utter CONTEMPT the government has for YOU. That is what the court said. Are you laughing right now or are you sitting there trying to get your mind around it?
Well surely there is MORE. And yes, there is a bit more. The court continues.
Human experience teaches that those who expect public dissemination of their remarks may well temper candor with a concern for appearances and for their own interests to the detriment of the decision making process. [Footnote 15]
Okay, the “human experience” card. That isn’t constitutional exactly but we are human, so there could be something here. Granted, some people may in fact prefer to show the public one face and another in private. But so? That is not a constitutional basis for the servants to not tell their masters what they are doing. It is just an argument that some people are not very straightforward with the people they serve.
But remember, the flip side of this “reason” is that the people up there in government may very well WANT to keep things secret SO that they CAN DO THINGS IN THEIR OWN INTERESTS, hence the need for TRANSPARENCY. In fact there are many reasons for FULL transparency. Not the least of which is that maybe the people would PREFER HONESTY about the REAL reasons as opposed to being treated like children who are only told “what they need to know”. And remember, the potential for SELF DEALING is greatly enhanced if there is secrecy.
So AT BEST there are competing policies at work regarding the “need” for secrecy, and THEREFORE it is the President’s obligation to come forward to show that the CONSTITUTION supports his interpretation claiming he has a RIGHT to this veil of secrecy. Well there’s a footnote, so maybe that’s where the answer lies. Here’s what the footnote says.
There is nothing novel about governmental confidentiality. The meetings of the Constitutional Convention in 1787 were conducted in complete privacy. Moreover, all records of those meetings were sealed for more than 30 years after the Convention. Most of the Framers acknowledged that, without secrecy, no constitution of the kind that was developed could have been written. C. Warren, The Making of the Constitution 134-139 (1937). (some citations omitted.)
How is this actual CONSTITUTIONAL support or even ARGUMENT for the existence of the privilege? It is some history at best. So? What is the actual LEGAL argument being made? None. (and if you want to know the peoples side of what happened that fateful summer in Philly, well go read what I wrote here.)
And ONCE AGAIN there is a simple reply to even the implication of this supposed basis. If it was “so obvious and necessary” and the people were all so clearly ON BOARD with this idea of secrecy, then why not just put a clause in the constitution saying the President can keep whatever secrets he deems appropriate from the people? Why not just do that? Remember, there is a clause in the constitution that empowers the Congress to create not just a post office, but also POSTAL ROADS. So it isn’t like they weren’t thinking of the consequences.
The court’s “reasoning” simply ASSUMES AWAY THE CENTRAL ISSUE. And it does so IN A FOOTNOTE. It is beyond outrageous. If you can’t see how the branches conspire to screw you then you are blind. So let’s continue with the text of the opinion, surely there is SOME scrap of support referenced.
Whatever the nature of the privilege of confidentiality of Presidential communications in the exercise of Art. II powers, the privilege can be said to derive from the supremacy of each branch within its own assigned area of constitutional duties.
“Whatever the nature”?? Isn’t that kind of important to be able to DESCRIBE? Isn’t it ESSENTIAL to be able to define the exact nature and scope of the PRIVILEGE before you could ever “find” the existence or non-existence of the privilege? Of course it is.
Then they just say “whatever it is” it “derives” from the supremacy of each branch”. So apparently there is a limitless undefined power to keep secrets that is “implied” and “springs” from the MERE fact that there IS an executive branch? This is insulting frankly. What about the competing policy issues I already demonstrated? Totally IGNORED. What about the REQUIREMENT that the government be able to POINT to where the CONSTITUTION empowers them to do what they are doing? All of that is out the window. This is what passes for “august reasoning” from these holy oracles. It continues:
Certain powers and privileges flow from the nature of enumerated powers; [Footnote 16] the protection of the confidentiality of Presidential communications has similar constitutional underpinnings.
Okay, so this sentence makes NO SENSE. It basically says that the implied powers they are finding in this case, of EXECUTIVE privilege are similar to the powers that flow from other ENUMERATED powers. What? Implied from implied is the same as necessary from enumerated? That is crap. Why don’t you try that kind of “reasoning” with your boss and see how far you get. Well thank god there’s a footnote so let’s check that.
The Special Prosecutor argues that there is no provision in the Constitution for a Presidential privilege as to the President’s communications corresponding to the privilege of Members of Congress under the Speech or Debate Clause.
Whoa. Look what the Special Prosecutor CLAIMED. He claimed the President had NO PRIVILEGE that is similar to the EXPRESS and LIMITED privilege that certain congressional communications receive that are ACTUALLY IN THE CONSTITUTION.
So this is DEAD ON POINT. The prosecutor raised the essential issue. And notice that the court PUTS IT AND ITS REASONING IN RESPONSE TO IT, IN THE FOOTNOTE. Ahh the “majesty” and wonder that IS the supreme court. So how do they answer the prosecutors MAIN POINT?
But the silence of the Constitution on this score is not dispositive.
Jesus H. you can’t make this stuff up! Honestly, wtf? The constitution is silent on the MAIN issue but THAT is not dispositive. What happened to the idea of a limited government with EXPRESS powers? Oh, out the window. And the court puts this in a FOOTNOTE?? Surely the court then presents SOME justification. Well here is the rest of the footnote.
“The rule of constitutional interpretation announced in McCulloch v. Maryland, 4 Wheat. 316, that that which was reasonably appropriate and relevant to the exercise of a granted power was to be considered as accompanying the grant, has been so universally applied that it suffices merely to state it.“
Hold it. This quote deals with how to interpret GRANTED powers. But they just told us that the executive privilege is NOT a GRANTED power it is an IMPLIED power that somehow “springs” from the mere existence of the “executive branch”. So this quote doesn’t even APPLY to the nonsensical argument they are even making. At best all that can be said about this “support” is that the court holds that the president has the privilege because the court finds that he has it. And the proof required of the court? Well it “suffices to merely state it.”
Such is the grandeur of those brilliant jurists who we all look to for guidance. Remember it is their job to “tell us what the law is.” And how do we know THAT? Because they told us that is their job. Can you say Idiocracy? lol That a mass of 330 million some odd people can be cowed and ruled by such utter nonsense really does prove that Truth is stranger than fiction my fellow inmates.
If this type of thing doesn’t wake you then what could I bring you?
The REST of the opinion uses THIS “foundation” to then “reason its way” to “other constitutional conclusions” about the extent of the “privilege” it just “found”. I seem to remember someone saying something about a house built on sand not being able to stand, or something along those lines.
This type of opinion, in my humble opinion, is criminal. If the “holding” in this case is not something that threatens the very fabric of our supposed “constitutional system” then what could?
I mean, there is NO THERE there. It is total crap. And THAT “executive” privilege they magically “found” is how they “justify” keeping 95% of all the secrets.
Every conspiracy to screw the people requires secrecy. Executive privilege is how they claim to have the “constitutional right” to keep the BULK of the secrets they keep to spy on and control every aspect of your life.
Why do you never hear about what I have just showed you? Simple, the lawyers who are presented in the media and who are richly rewarded for being “experts” in academia etc. and whose books become bestsellers and who have radio shows etc. are either in on the whole thing or hopelessly lost in their own world. Why would they bother to change something that isn’t broken? They get rich and go on T.V. and give speeches spinning a yarn that serves those in power. Thus they continue to do it and never question their own brilliance.
They are put there by the money powers to DISTRACT YOU. And thus, YOU never hear or see the truth.
Keep everyone asking the wrong questions. It is ALWAYS the same game. Lol. What I do is ask the RIGHT questions. That is very dangerous indeed. The pen and the sword my friend. The pen and the sword.
That’s all for now my brainwashed Brethren. I hope you learned something. Take care, live in the light, and tell someone about the truth about the law.