“If this were a dictatorship, it would be a heck of a lot easier,
just so long as I’m the dictator.”
-George W. Bush, December 18, 2000
When observing Bush’s actions since 9/11, people wonder how he gets away with blatantly violating laws such as those regarding domestic spying. Have you wondered why Congress does nothing about it, even with democrats in control? Breaking a law is a criminal act and grounds for impeachment, and yet nothing happens, nothing is said. And nothing is ever going to happen either. Bush and his associates will never be prosecuted for any of these crimes. Why? Because the Office of Legal Counsel (probably the most powerful organization in the U.S. that you’ve never heard of) approved all of Bush’s actions. The blessings from the Office of Legal Counsel gave permission for these activities and confers immunity from prosecution on anyone who acts on their recommendations. The Office of Legal Counsel’s decisions carry the same weight as a Supreme Court decision and cannot be challenged in any way.
Last night I listened to a great interview. Terry Gross interviewed Charlie Savage, author of In Pursuit of the Imperial President. Savage gives a complete explanation of what has happened in a clear concise manner, including how Bush managed to co-opt this all-powerful Office of Legal Counsel. There’s a concrete reason that the president can do what he does and get away with it and there’s nothing we can do about it. If you’ve wondered about this mystery, wonder no more. You can listen to the interview here:
The above link is to NPR’s show called Fresh Air, September 5th, 2007. It will be 39 minutes well spent. When you get there, click on the “Listen” button.
Did you know that today’s average American gets half of his or her calories every day from sugar? It’s true. The average American today consumes 160 pounds of sugar per year. A hundred years ago, this figure was 10 pounds per year. This is great for the sugar companies but must be partly to blame for the explosion in obesity in the U.S.A.
Americans have become sugar addicts. Besides Coke and soda pop that’s loaded with sugar (Coke contains something like 10 teaspoons of sugar per can) read the labels in the fruit juice aisle at the market. Nearly all of them are labeled as “fruit drink” or “fruit cocktail” and are loaded with corn syrup. It’s hard to find a bottle that contains just plain fruit juice. Look at the calories on these fruit “juices”. It’s shocking.
Three years ago I was living in a warm climate and took to drinking lots of “fruit juice”. I thought I was doing myself a favor. After all, it said Vitamin C right on the label. But I noticed that I began to gain weight rapidly. I discussed it with a friend and she asked me to do a complete diet inventory, so I did. I discovered that I was consuming 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day, every day, just in “fruit juice”. I stopped that cold and switched to water. For the next two days, my vision was not quite right. A lifelong diabetic friend explained that this was normal because I stopped the huge constant sugar intake so suddenly. He explained that it would take a couple days for my pancreas to adjust to the new sugar levels. He was right. Since then I have limited my fruit juice intake to only real juices, not spiked with sugar or corn syrup, and about a glass per day. Lots of water and iced tea make up the rest of my fluid intake.
I was a prime example of the statistic I mentioned above. By quitting the “fruit flavored juice” I dropped nearly 20 pounds, back to my normal weight.