Talk:2007-05-31 Repudiation, Not Impeachment
This seems to be following similar trains of thought to those I followed which led me eventually to the idea of a "backup government"... although this article stops far short of that. Ritter also seems to be agreeing with me that violent revolution is not the way to go, at least until/unless things get much much worse than they already are.
"...whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness …when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security." – Thomas Jefferson
In other words, the government only exists because the people want it; as citizens, we have the right to change it if it's screwed up. It's just a matter of finding some means that is the least likely to cause harm and most likely to work (I'm not sure how those two factors should be weighted).
"It is not the failures of an individual that have gotten us to where we are today, but rather the failure of the collective. So before we speak of impeachment and the notion of executive accountability, I would like to address the issue of repudiation and the necessity of civic responsibility."
I agree with that. I think I even found myself thinking the phrase "civic responsibility", or similar, when I was independently on this train of thought – and then immediately cringed...because civics, as taught in school and just about anywhere else, is so godawfully boring. (Mild conspiracy theory: I think this boringness may actually be deliberate. The PTB (Powers That Be) don't want us understanding how our government works, and of course they also don't want us thinking that we can be effective in influencing it. So they selectively encourage only the most boring civics curricula (where civics is even taught at all), and emphasize only the most uninteresting parts of citizen participation as being "your civic duty".)
What is really needed is a way to make civics comprehensible, to make it easier to find out (and understand) what's going on, and tie it into the issues that matter – and that will make it interesting. (Islands of this sort of thing are now popping up all over the internet; see Issuepedia:Related Projects. The problem is that they are still islands, and they are lacking in one key respect: collective decision-making.) And then people will want to get involved, because they will see how it affects them.
If we set things up to make it easy for cogent voices to be heard, then cogent voices will want to be involved – because they can make a difference, by being heard by lots of people.
And... yeah, "back to the basics". We have a ridiculous collection of laws, and nobody understands even 1% of them. The IRS tax code changes every year, and even full-time tax accountants don't bother to read it. We need to start over from basic principles, and write a set of laws that make sense and which an English-speaking person of 100 IQ can understand. (Some laws may need to be highly technical and understandable only to experts in certain fields – but the basic ideas and intentions behind any law, even a highly technical law, need to be laid out in terms that are just that simple. Experts can spot if the technical version isn't true to the spirit of the layman version.)
Ritter finishes by listing a number of things we should repudiate, as citizens. The problem is, if we each repudiate them individually, what is to stop the neocons from arresting us individually as traitors?
We need a way to collectively repudiate actions of the government, so that we can't be "divided and conquered".