Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.

- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Seymour Hersh: Cheney's 'Executive Assassin Ring'

Pulitzer prize winner Seymour Hersh is one of the last and perhaps best investigative journalists of our time.

When I was growing up during the Watergate Era, I idolized Woodward and Bernstein: I hoped to one day become an investigative journalist myself -- one of the journalists that serve our democratic process by shedding much needed light into the dark places in our government.

A free and independent media was always considered by our forefathers to be one of the safeguards of our democracy - the unofficial 'forth branch of government' that kept the populace informed so that they could exercise citizen oversight and keep our nation free from the ruling corruption that devoured democracies in the past.

Today, independent media is hard to find. Most of it is now corporate media, pushing a corporate, elitist agenda. To say that our canned media is slanted towards the interests of the corporate power-brokers would be a laughable understatement. It is completely owned by the corporate power-brokers, and serves their purposes quite nicely. Our own voices are seldom heard in this big market, monopolized media; thus government oversight by the media is a dying art, practiced by only a few rare, brave journalists (and working for dedicated papers and magazines.)

My hat is off to the New Yorker for their continued support of Mr. Hersh and his much-needed service to our democracy. And kudos to Amy Goodman for her 'take no prisoners' independent journalism. Her success, and the success of Democracy Now! demonstrates our citizen determination to get the news - the real news - and to keep an eye on Washington. As recent economic (not to mention two wars) have shown... our oversight is necessary.

Government-sponsored hit-squads are so banana republic... they debase our nation, our standing in the world, and our very morality as Americans. They are also unconstitutional and illegal.

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