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Monday, January 08, 2007

Big Brother Pushes the Envelope...Again

Bush, the Letter Opener

When working at my first junk mail company, one of the indoctrination drills was to observe the mailroom where all the orders were opened. In those days they did it by hand. Before I left, there were machines that did this automatically. Now the White House monarch wants to do that job for all Americans, except Bush is talking about your personal correspondence. Just when you think you’ve seen everything, this man comes up with a new zinger.

The “Signing Statements” Keep Coming

You remember “signing statements,” those additions this president keeps adding to bills that he signs. Well he added another one to the postal bill signed before Christmas, stating that the federal government can open your mail for “foreign intelligence collection.” MSNBC broke the news in a January 4 article, “Warrantless mail search may be allowed.” In case you forgot, Bush has issued at least 750 signing statements while in office, more than all other presidents combined.

Another Republican Questions Their Own…Again

The issue was first disclosed by the New York Daily News. It was Maine Republican Senator Susan Collins’ postal reform bill to which the signing statement was added, and she called on Bush to “explain why he used it to claim he can open domestic mail without a search warrant.” Of course all the Dems are crucifying Big Brother-in-chief, but it was another Republican, New York’s Mayor Bloomberg, who stated he “’would be surprised if the courts sided with the President,’ even if a warrantless search were done under threat of a terror attack.”

George Orwell Made Me Do It

The author of 1984 must have had an impact on the Bush/Cheney team as I have written before, although there is nothing historical to back that up. I still say Orwell’s teachings are revealed as a strategy play-book for this administration in Jackie Jura’s Orwell Today Web site in the “Surveillance” section. The novelist wrote about technical advances that allowed his Big Brother to spy on the citizenry 24 hours a day. All you owned was what was inside your head in 1984, but if the Bush gang has anything to do with it, that will go on the market soon. But Bush’s recent “signing statement” mentality seems to have been lifted right out of 1984, where the controlling Party from Orwell’s fictional city of Oceania opened all letters in transit. Case closed.

Complete Confusion as Usual

In one version from the Washington Post, the U.S. Postal Service is in agreement with the White House, according to Bush’s new Fox-trained, front man, Tony Snow. On the other hand, junk mail industry publication Direct says the USPS is disputing Bush’s right to open your personal mail. Snow goes on to reinforce this administration’s position that somehow it has been granted unlimited authority. Most Democrats and many Republicans disagree with the latest signing statement and sound as if they are becoming weary with this Big Brother bully-pulpit.

Let the fireworks begin!

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