May 3, 2005

Pat Robertson, Overreach, and Sheer Blithering Idiocy

According to the NY Daily News, Pat Robertson, host of the inexplicably popular '700 Club,' told interviewer George Stephanopoulos on ABC that he considered United States Federal Judges a greater danger to the United States and its citizens than Al-Qaeda. Now, while I don't hold the Daily News up as a shining example of journalism much of the time, I'll take their word on this one; it's a pretty easily verifiable bit of reporting:
"Over 100 years, I think the gradual erosion of the consensus that's held our country together is probably more serious than a few bearded terrorists who fly into buildings," Robertson said on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos." "I think we have controlled Al Qaeda," the 700 Club host said, but warned of "erosion at home" and said judges were creating a "tyranny of oligarchy." Confronted by Stephanopoulos on his claims that an out-of-control liberal judiciary is the worst threat America has faced in 400 years - worse than Nazi Germany, Japan and the Civil War - Robertson didn't back down. "Yes, I really believe that," he said. "I think they are destroying the fabric that holds our nation together."

Is this really the kind of image of the world that a large number of American citizens hold? Honestly? I know that I come across as a ranting liberal bastard. I understand that. However, one thing I would like to be clear about is the following: I consider the safety of the United States - both the physical and the moral safety of the United States - of paramount importance. I know that some GOP strategists would have everyone believe that as a Democrat and liberal, I'd prefer to have the U.S. buried beneath threats foreign and domestic, but if I ever meet said strategists face to face, we'll see what they have to say about that. If we do meet, good luck to them getting out of it with 'heh, it's just a political strategy, don't take it personally' (yes, at least one Republican activist has told me that).

However, this is beyond the fucking pale. One of the prime reasons I hold the United States and its system up as examples I will defend is our judiciary. Far from 'eroding the consensus' the judiciary is in fact the embodiment of the consensus. The willingness of the citizenry to submit to the law as written, and as presided over by the judiciary, is (to me) the representation of the United States as a living, working thing - more than an idea, a functioning and vital organization that holds back Hobbes' 'State of Nature' day by day.

On the contrary, the 'erosion of the consensus' is, in fact, being carried out by those like Mr. Robertson, who seem to feel that the judiciary not slavishly interpreting the law as the current declared (note I do not say actual) majority demands. It wouldn't matter if it was the actual majority, either; that's not how the system works. The judiciary was explicitly set up as it was to prevent the mob from ruling. If Mr. Robertson doesn't understand that, he needs to return to fourth grade Civics, there to stay until he deigns to learn something.

If he won't do that, then, well, he's free to repeat his ridiculous assertions that American judges are worse for the Republic than the Nazis next time he's in my presence. As an American Jew, and a loudmouthed one to boot, I can assure him it will not be as...civil as Mr. Stephanopoulos' may have been on public television.

If you watch the 700 Club (and I can't imagine why you would, but that's my own problem) then please consider calling in and explaining to this maniac why he's wrong. Better yet, call any advertiser than buys time on this idiot's show (if there are any) and explain to them in detail why their advertising dollars are going to make it very difficult for you to purchase their products. Call television stations that run it and explain that you find it offensive (if you do) that this form of assault on our country's system is being promulgated on their airwaves.

Just don't let this loose cannon fuckwit just slide.

Posted by jbz at May 3, 2005 3:33 AM | TrackBack

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