JUDGE NAPOLITANO: Is Obama a dupe or a totalitarian, megalomaniacal liar?
Andrew P. Napolitano, a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey, is the author of seven books on the U.S. Constitution, including his most recent, “Theodore and Woodrow: How Two American Presidents Destroyed Constitutional Freedom” (Thomas Nelson, 2012). He is also senior judicial analyst for Fox News. Virtually simultaneously with the Truth in Media editorial on the “Lame Duck” President, Napolitano wrote an OpEd column which ran in the Washington Times yesterday (Oct 30, 2013). I just noticed his piece this morning (Oct 31). Like the Truth in Media editorial, Napolitano asks the question at the end – “what do we do about it?”
The former judge also makes a head-spinning point. If the President did know the NSA was spying on foreign heads of state, such as the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, it means he had allowed the agency to spy on his own private conversations with her. And, of course, with many other people who are on NSA’s surveillance list. Which means virtually everybody who is anybody and then some.
That poses some interesting questions: If the President did know, it means he had surrendered the privacy of privileged White House executive conversations to a bunch of spies. Nothing is sacred anymore. Not even the privacy of the Oval Office.
If he did not know, he had failed his duty as the guardian of the highest office in the land. It is President’s Job One and his sacred oath to protect the Constitution, including the Fourth Amendment (that prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures and requires any warrant to be judicially sanctioned and supported by probable cause).
So it’s a lose-lose situation for the President. Which means he needs to apologize to the American people for failing in his duties; put an immediate stop to any such spying in the future; and fire all the culprits.
So far, there have been no apologies. The NSA rampage through the Fourth Amendment is continuing. Nobody has been fired. Nor even reprimanded by the President.
What does that imply? He must have known. Action speaks louder than words.
Here are some excerpts from Judge Napolitano’s column…
EXCERPTS FROM JUDGE NAPOLITANO’S COLUMN
When German Chancellor Angela Merkel celebrated the opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Berlin in 2008, she could not have imagined that she was blessing the workplace for the largest and most effective gaggle of American spies anywhere outside of the United States.
It seems straight out of a grade-B movie, but it has been happening for the past 11 years: The National Security Agency (NSA) has been using Mrs. Merkel as an instrument to spy on the president of the United States.
When Susan E. Rice, Mr. Obama’s national security adviser, was confronted with all of this by her German counterpart, she first told him the White House would deny it. Then she called him to say that the White House could not deny it, but the president would deny that he personally knew of it.
How did we get here? What are the consequences of a president spying on himself? What does this mean for the rest of us?
Now we know how pervasive this NSA spying is: It not only reaches the Supreme Court, the Pentagon, the CIA, the local police and the cellphones and homes of all Americans, it reaches the Oval Office itself. Yet when the president denies that he knows of this, that denial leads to more questions.
The president claims he can start secret foreign wars using the CIA, secretly kill Americans using drones, and now secretly spy on anyone anywhere using the NSA. Is the president an unwitting dupe to a secret rats’ nest of uncontrolled government spies and killers? Or is he a megalomaniacal, totalitarian secret micromanager who lies regularly, consistently and systematically about the role of government in our lives?
Which is worse? What do we do about it?