July 4, 1776 or July 4, 2006...See Any Differences?

Tuesday, July 04, 2006 at 07:57 AM

230 years ago, today, a bunch of aggravating, nasty, mean and very liberal men signed a document drafted by one Thomas Jefferson, a liberal (yes!), and soon to be a future president...

Of course, I am referring to why we all have the day off, well, most of us, and the now ironic significance of this day: This is when a handful of liberals threw down the gauntlet at King George III.

We know the story, well, most of it. George3 wasn't the sole jackass responsible for all the political insanity going on here, but as the old saw goes, you wear the crown, you take the blame, and Jefferson's fire-and-brimstone masterpiece said as much: We have been nice guys long enough, despite attempts to reason with you and your idiot minions, well, that's it, baby, the shit just hit the fan.

Thus, the Declaration Of Independence was signed off, entered into the annals of history, and became one pretty sacred writ. Students are made to study it, but, I have to wonder, is it just me...or do we need to sign it again????

Jefferson started the piece off with a beautifully done preamble, sheer poetry, every word, but, eventually, and not meaning to be facetious, but it disintegrates into a "bitch list". And what a list, Jefferson left out almost nothing, thus, making it a scathing indictment of an idiot ruler's mendacity and total inability to use his cranial matter. Oh, yes, historians, by inference, there are plenty of mentions of George3's stooges, loads of them.

It's a lovely thing, all said.

But, as I re-read this time, it about leapt off the paper at me: We joke so much about a certain career ne'er-do-well as "King George", do we not? And we now wonder why? I read again the list of grievances Jefferson detailed, it's about as bad as reading.....Revelation....

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

To date, Bush has used the "signing statement" ploy more than any other president in this nation's history! He picks and chooses that he wants to do, and ignores everything else...despite the fact there's supposed to be this thing called a "veto".

 He has forbidden his Governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, has utterly neglected to attend to them.

Mob boss stuff, oh, yes, kiddies, oh, yes...

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

  He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

  He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.

  He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

  He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

At about this point, I would hope that, you, like me, feel this icy cold chilly thing crawling right into your anus, up your spinal cord and settling in the back of your skull as it did to me. It reads like prophesy. Has history gone and repeated itself???

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

Mercenaries, no, our children, yes....to enact our own Annexation Of The Sudetenland.

Shortly after this list of grievances, the events were set into stone; cutting the ties forever. America was on her own, and George3 penned in his diary "nothing of importance happened today". Cruel irony, all the same.

But you read the Declaration again, and read this list of crimes, grievances committed by George3 and his officers against the colonists, you get the idea and fast: The colonists' patience had evaporated, it was time for action, regardless of the outcome.

230 years later, to the very day, I read this writ and I am genuinely not sure what I feel. Oh, I'm angry beyond words, I am sure many feel the same. You read the list of crimes that Jefferson and his comrades said were so committed, transpose them a shade and here we are again, same song, same melody, same chord structure, new band playing it.

We have a fucking crazy person in charge. He has other crazy persons in high positions, and we are sitting here stunned on our asses, so many still not believing that this could ever be possible.

Now, what worries me? The punch line to so sick a joke, to me, far more sick than the Aristocrats joke:

What happens next?

We know what happened next with the colonists, right after the ink dried: They went to war with the crown, chased the Tories up to Canada, and when all was said and done, we had a system where the power lay in the hands of each.

For those of us who inherited that, it's a scary set of scenarios over the horizon to even dare contemplate. One friend asked me:

"Suppose the elections this year are as badly done as last time? Suppose nothing changes? What do we do then, old man? What do we do?"

Or, as some bloggers have hinted at: This little firestorm over the Times may be yet a trigger for martial law to be imposed. And why not? Desperate despots do dumb things, true? Ask Hitler about that.

It's a haunting thing: Jefferson, in a way, has reached across spacetime into a realm 230 years later, and the same set of indictments against a childish mama's boy wannabee-dictator ring with a hard, cold truth as they did 230 years ago.

If so, again, what are we going to do, armed with this nasty truth? What, indeed...