Assaults on Our Freedom Come From Left and Right

Long bipartisan history of infringing on rights of Americans
By Kristina Loew,  Newser User
Posted Nov 13, 2008 1:07 PM CST
Assaults on Our Freedom Come From Left and Right
In this March 3, 2006 file photo, members of the Supreme Court pose for a photo at the Supreme Court' Supreme Building in Washington.    (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Those who blame the current administration for assaults on US constitutional freedoms should take a longer view, writes Alexander Cockburn in the American Conservative. “No doubt the conservatives who cheered Bush on as he abrogated ancient rights and stretched the powers of his office to unseen limits would have shrieked if a Democrat had taken such liberties,” but Bush’s actions are “acute symptoms of a chronic disease.”

While Bush has taken liberty with our liberties—warrantless wiretaps, Guantanamo, habeas corpus, to name a few—conservatives argue he was simply following a path “blazed by Clinton” and his bombs in Bosnia or the assault on the Branch Davidian compound. And despite his mantra of change, expect more of the same from Barack Obama—the president-elect voted for an expanded FISA, and isn't likely to roll back "the lordly prerogatives Bush established," writes Cockburn. (Read more Bill of Rights stories.)

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