There is obviously no limit to the political left's bloodlust for all things George W. Bush, as witnessed by two news items this week. If Barack Obama is as levelheaded and pragmatic as his supporters insist, he'll have his work cut out for him dealing with these avengers on his side of the ideological spectrum.
On Tuesday, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers issued a 500-page report, whose executive summary boasts "was drafted to itemize and document the various abuses that occurred during the Bush Administration." The report recommends "that the new Administration conduct an independent criminal inquiry into whether any laws were broken in connection with these activities."
The same day, Slate magazine published an op-ed by Yale law professor Bruce Ackerman suggesting that 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Jay Bybee be impeached, essentially because "he was responsible for the notorious torture memos that enabled the excesses at Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, and other places."
Both of these items are equally outrageous and demonstrate the potential dangerousness of leftists in power. How ironic that the gravamen of each complaint is an alleged abuse of power while its recommended remedy would constitute a worse abuse (the criminalization of policy differences), especially considering the weakness of the complaints.
The Conyers vendetta seeks to criminally probe Bush officials involved with the National Security Agency's surveillance program, the tough interrogation techniques of enemy combatants, the manipulation of intelligence, the firing of U.S. attorneys, and other matters.
The report protests that its purpose "is not payback, but to uphold the rule of law. … Such an effort would be a welcome sign to our friends, and a warning to our foes, that this Nation can indeed serve as a beacon of liberty and freedom without weakening our ability to combat terrorism or other threats."
Oh, yes, I'm sure al-Qaida is quaking in its boots at the prospect of indictments of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld for implementing policies they deemed necessary -- and which have proved to be immensely successful -- to thwart terrorism and safeguard the United States. Fitting the outgoing administration for orange jumpsuits would surely be a stern "warning to our foes."