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Refresher For Conservatives

By The Reverend Published: January 21, 2009

Consider this post a language-syntax refresher for conservatives.

President Obama today...

"Information will not be withheld just because I say so. It will be withheld because a separate authority believes my request is well grounded in the Constitution. Let me say it as simply as I can, transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

Sentences like these are going to be extremely difficult for some conservatives to comprehend. I'm relatively sure that words like..."information will not be withheld just because I say so",...will sound like some foreign language jibberish to certain folks of the minority persuasion. For you conservatives, presidents who don't withhold information aren't really presidents.

Conservatives don't fully recognize the Carter and Clinton presidencies. Never have. To conservatives, presidents are only presidents if they're Republican....and with W., that didn't even hold up. Nixon, Reagan, and both Bushes would never in a million years say words like..."information will not be withheld just because we say so." Of course information will be withheld.....what the hell sense is it being president if you can't withhold information and keep lots of secrets? That's why we had Watergate, Iran-Contra and the soon-to-be investigation into the Crawford Cowpoke Gang. All of these GOP presidents withheld information, much of it implicating them in crimes, and did so on just their royal say so.

A word to conservatives here. We'll be patient as you get used to new, foreign-sounding-at-first, phraseology from President Obama.

Here's another....."separate authority". Say it with me...first word, sep-ar-ate....second word, au-thor-i-ty. Not so hard, really. I know, I know....believe me when I say that I know many conservatives whose eyes will glaze over at those two words when used by the president of the United States. Conservatives baptized in the deep waters of 'unitary executive' pools will most likely experience a sort of knee jerk reaction to a president using the words, "separate authority." The reaction will manifest itself in responses like this ....."There is no separate authority to the president. What's he talking about? Our nation is eternally at war and that means that there is no "separate authority"....there is no other authority but the president."

I'm here to help my conservative brethren. See....actually, there is no such thing as a "unitary executive" privilege elevating one man or woman above any and all "other" authorities. Calm down. I realize the word "other" is a more mature word, especially when used in conjunction with the word "authorities".....but it shouldn't frighten you. It's okay. The Islamofascists won't get you in your bed if you acknowledge that there are, indeed, "other authorities" outside of the presidency.

Also difficult to comprehend will be, "well grounded in the Constitution." The difficulty is understandable in light of George W. Bush's regard for what he so patriotically called, "a goddamn piece of paper." Conservatives, at first shocked to hear about the Constitution, should not seek outside help for the ringing dissonance they encounter when hearing the words "well grounded" or "in the Constitution." Though it will take time, I believe the most drunken conservative kool-aid drinkers out there will, eventually, find that those words are all good.

I saved the most challenging for last. "Rule of law." Repeat it with me, "rule of law." Not so hard if you go slowly. This phrase by the new president will be the most difficult for conservatives, and even some of the zillions of centrists that David Broder keeps telling us are out there, to commit to memory and full understanding.

The president is, in reality, the chief law enforcement officer of the country. He isn't, as many folks have gotten used to, the law MAKER. Hyper down....I know this stuff is frustrating. The Congress MAKES the laws.....the president enforces those laws....and the Supreme Court reviews those laws comparing them to W's "goddam piece of paer", I mean, the Constitution. It's called....brace yourself for this.....separate yet equal powers. Also, most likely, a foreign sounding phrase to those who know for sure that Islamofascists are hiding everywhere in America, as well as counterintuitive to those who insist "everything has changed" since 9-11. In actuality, and please take this in the right way,.....nothing changed.

I think that will be enough for today. Brain drain, and that's what's required now, literally, is very exhausting. But don't forget to commit the new words and phrases to memory. "separate authority", "well grounded in the Constitution", "rule of law." We'll be using those words a lot over the next 8 years.

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