At an event in State College in the fall of 2005, an evangelical pastor told me that we need the ACLU because, according to the pastor, if there is another terrorist attack, America will become a police state. (He was simultaneously chastising us for our stands on religious liberty.)
Now conservative Jack Goldsmith, a professor at Harvard Law and late of the Justice Department, has laid out in a new book and an interview in The New York Times Magazine just how far the Bush administration is willing to go in decimating freedom.
According to a column by Robyn Blumner in the St. Petersburg Times,
In vivid detail, Goldsmith describes how the administration used the specter of terrorism as a means to expand the power of the presidency.
This was especially true, according to Goldsmith, of Dick Cheney’s top aide, David Addington, who once told Goldsmith that if the OLC ruled against an administration policy, “the blood of the hundred thousand people who die in the next attack will be on your hands.”
Addington seemed to relish the coming of another big one and what powers loyal Bushies could arrogate in the aftermath. Goldsmith recalls him saying: “We’re one bomb away from getting rid of that obnoxious (FISA) court.”
In other words, after one more terrorist attack, the administration could get Congress to wipe away any kind of warrant requirement for domestic spying.
Team Bush and its “one bomb away” agenda would use the next attack to finish the job of consolidating the nation’s power in one man.
Andy in Harrisburg