The New York Times editorial page was in a snit with the Supreme Court this week for its first ruling on the Bush administration's wartime security procedures. Despite the hysteria at the Times for the assault on "constitutional rights" by Attorney General John Ashcroft, the Supreme Court ruled for Ashcroft.
For now, at least, deportation hearings of suspected terrorists will not be open to the public. This, the Times said, was "troubling." Sadly, the Constitution does not require that national security be compromised.
Like everything liberals oppose but don't have a good argument for, all reasonable national security measures are called "unconstitutional." Whenever liberals are losing on substance, they pretend to be upset about process.
Through their enervating dialogues and endless concerns with constitutional process, liberals have made themselves incapable of feeling hate for the enemy. Refusing to take sides in this war, they busy themselves wailing about every security precaution taken by the Bush administration.
Ashcroft has been incessantly attacked on the op-ed page of the New York Times by the same columnists who are now angrily demanding to know why the Bush administration didn't imprison all Arabs before Sept. 11. He has been compared to the Taliban. (And you're not a patriot in this war until a liberal has compared you to the Taliban.)
Bill Goodman of the Center for Constitutional Rights called Attorney General John Ashcroft the Constitution's "main enemy." (As Andrew Ferguson said, evidently Osama bin Laden comes in a close second.)
Sen. Patrick Do-Nothing Leahy has complained about Ashcroft's "disappointing" failure to run all internal guideline changes past the Senate Judiciary Committee. Instead, Sen. Do-Nothing said, "we're presented with a fait accompli reflecting no congressional input whatsoever."
Ashcroft was probably worried Leahy would take as long with procedures for investigating terrorism as he is with Bush's judicial nominees. If Speedy Gonzales Leahy were required to review Justice Department guidelines, America would be an Islamic regime before Leahy got around to it.
No matter what defeatist tack liberals take, real Americans are behind our troops 100 percent, behind John Ashcroft 100 percent, behind locking up suspected terrorists 100 percent, behind surveillance of Arabs 100 percent. Liberals become indignant when you question their patriotism, but simultaneously work overtime to give terrorists a cushion for the next attack and laugh at dumb Americans who love their country and hate the enemy.
The New York Times ran a Tom Tomorrow cartoon sneering about Americans who believe with "unwavering faith in an invisible omniscient deity who favors those born in the middle of the North American land mass." This is how liberals conceive of America: an undifferentiated land mass in the middle of North America. Like all cartoons specially featured in the Times, there was nothing remotely funny about the cartoon. Its point was simply to convey all the proper prejudices of elitist liberals against ordinary Americans.
While hooting with laughter at patriotic Americans, liberals prattle on and on about the right to dissent as the true mark of patriotism and claim their unrelenting kvetching is a needed corrective to jingoism. (It's not jingoism, and the only people who use that word are fifth columnists.)
After Sept. 11, liberals are appalled by patriotism with an edge of anger because that might lead America to defend itself. True patriotism, they believe, should consist of redoubled efforts at attacking George Bush.
Movie director Robert Altman (who won the Golden Globe for best director for "Gosford Park") said, "When I see an American flag flying, it's a joke. This present government in America I just find disgusting."
Columbia professor Eric Foner said: "I'm not sure which is more frightening: the horror that engulfed New York City or the apocalyptic rhetoric emanating daily from the White House." I think I know the answer! Thousands of our fellow countrymen dying in a fiery inferno, I'm pretty sure, is "more frightening" than the rhetoric emanating from the White House.
Liberals are angrier at John Ashcroft for questioning angry Arab immigrants applying for crop-duster permits than they are about the terrorists. These people simply do not have an implacable desire to kill those who cheered the slaughter of thousands of American citizens. If you can rise above that, if you can move on from that, you weren't angry in the first place.
During World War II, George Orwell said of England's pacifists: "Since pacifists have more freedom of action in countries where traces of democracy survive, pacifism can act more effectively against democracy than for it. Objectively, the pacifist is pro-Nazi."
To paraphrase Orwell, in this war, those who cannot stay focused on fighting the enemy are objectively pro-terrorist.