Heads Up

A Weekly View from the Foothills of Appalachia


December 20, 1998 #116


by: Doug Fiedor


E-mail to: fiedor19@eos.net

Copyright © 1998 by Doug Fiedor, all rights reserved

This text may be copied and distributed freely

but only in its entirety, and with no changes

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On Saturday, December 19, 1998, President William J. Clinton, the forty-second President of the United States, became only the second president in American history -- and the first "elected" President -- to be impeached by the House of Representatives. Such will forevermore be the legacy of this dishonorable president.

Two articles of impeachment were approved. On a vote of 228 to 206, the House charged Clinton with perjury before a federal grand jury. Obstruction of justice was also approved on a vote of 221 to 212. Two other articles were presented by the House Judiciary Committee to the full House for consideration but failed to pass.

The original Article 4, on abuse of power, lost on a vote of 148 to 285, leading many onlookers to wonder if many of those in elected office even believe there is such a thing as abuse of power within the federal government anymore. That is, Clinton's abuse of power over the past three years seemed to many to be rampant and rather easy to identify. Yet, the article was not approved by the full house.

Also interesting was the fact that all but five Democrats voted against all articles of impeachment. To many, this is seen as a vote of acceptance for perjury, obstruction of justice and abuse of power. The Democrats are expected to pay dearly for this in the next election.

When House business was completed, many Democrats attended a meeting with President Clinton at the White House. At this writing, it is not known exactly what was discussed at the meeting. However, some say the meeting was called to discuss "making a deal" with the Senate.

After that meeting, they all came out onto the lawn for what amounted to little more than a happy face pep-rally/publicity stunt with absolutely nothing of substance said.

Retired Senators George Mitchell and Bob Dole are expected to represent Clinton, at least in the background, during the Senate trial. We feel that it is time someone had a very serious talk with Bob Dole! Mitchell was always as far left as the Clintons and cannot hurt himself for defending a crooked administration.

However, for Bob Dole to defend the likes of Bill Clinton could very well, in the eyes of some voters, tend to lump all Republican politicians in the same corrupt basket the Socialist-Democrats occupy.  



 Just when you think the ship of state is going on a fairly straightforward course, two of the people responsible for twisting government into the contorted mess it is today came out of retirement and tried to kibitz.

First, there's George Mitchell, the very liberal Senate majority leader from 1989 to 1995, coming out in the New York Times saying: "The President has done wrong, but he has certainly not committed anything resembling a crime against the nation. His conduct simply does not constitute an impeachable offense." Mitchell's opinion was no surprise, really. Over the years, he probably supported nearly as much unconstitutional, socialist legislation as FDR did.

The second retired buttinsky, however, was somewhat of a surprise.

Bob Dole calls himself a conservative, but he was often a conciliator for the far-left in Congress. That is, not being a great follower of our Constitution, he bargained away many of our rights by "compromising" with the socialists in Congress on legislation. For instance, the Brady bill quickly comes to mind.

Anyway, Dole also came out against impeachment last week. Rather than throwing the Clintons out of office, Dole proposed that Congress junk the Constitutionally designated impeachment process and pass legislation to censure Clinton.

That's bad enough. But, Dole also stuck in a couple of really tortuous and unconstitutional twists. For instance, he feels that Clinton should be required to sign the censure in the presence of the principal leaders of the government, including the vice president, members of the Cabinet, congressional leaders and members of the Supreme Court -- kind of like at a mini State of the Union address, with full media coverage and all.

Dole suggests that, regardless of the House vote, the Senate should pass a resolution containing a Senate version of the impeachment articles. Then, Vice President Al Gore, rather than the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, should preside at the debate. After action by the Senate, the resolution would then be sent to the House of Representatives for consideration.

In other words, Bob Dole proposes another silly and unconstitutional fiasco. As usual, he refuses to go along with the directions in the Constitution -- this country's operations manual. The Founding Fathers devised a simpler procedure, and in Article I, Section 3 they set it down for us to follow. This is the law of the land. There is no other:

The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present.

Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any other Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.


Furthermore, Article II Section 4 states that:

The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.


Let's look at an opinion of one of the authors of our Constitution about legislators doing that which is not allowed. In the Federalist Papers No. 78, Alexander Hamilton writes:

There is no position which depends on clearer principles than that every act of a delegated authority, contrary to the tenor of the commission under which it is exercised, is void. No legislative act, therefore, contrary to the Constitution, can be valid.


Bob Dole's (or anyone else's, for that matter) censure scheme would, therefore, not be a valid course of action.

More recently, the U.S. Supreme Court wrote in "Printz et al v. U.S." (95-1478, 1997):

Much of the Constitution is concerned with setting forth the form of our government, and the courts have traditionally invalidated measures deviating from that form. The result may appear 'formalistic' in a given case to partisans of the measure at issue, because such measures are typically the product of the era's perceived necessity. But the Constitution protects us from our own best intentions.


We need some of that protecting "us from our own best intentions" today.

The Founding Fathers set down a procedure to remove dishonorable officials and judges. The only remedy given is impeachment, indictment in the House and trial in the Senate. Keeping the trial honest (and the Senators quiet) is the task of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The only course of action open to the Senate, then, is to listen quietly to the evidence presented, and then privately deliberate a verdict of guilty or not guilty.

If the verdict is guilty, the only course of action is to remove Clinton from the position of honor. Then, and only then, may the Senate debate an issue. That issue is, shall Clinton be allowed to hold a position in government ever again, or not. There is no provision for censure or fine available in our Constitution.

It is amazing that certain members (past and present) of Congress think so little of our Constitution that they cannot even do something as important as impeaching a President correctly.

House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt is yet another misguided politician calling for censure. Dick, would you drop your wife off for a private audience with Clinton for an hour? (You do trust your President, Dick . . . don't you? And, will your wife?)

It certainly appears that it is time for a major house-cleaning in Washington. If they do not obey the Constitution to the letter in this matter, not one of them should ever get our vote again. Let's tell them so.

The Clintons must be removed from government.  



In an outward sign of real desperation, Monica's ex boyfriend started a war. It wasn't a very big war, to be sure. And we didn't really send very many military people into the fight. Actually, we fought more or less of a mechanized war. That is, we led off with about $250-million worth of the modern equivalent of Buzz-Bombs. And, as with the old fashioned buzz-bombs, some tended to go astray.

And so began Operation Desert Fox; not to be confused with what Bill thought was a Valley Fox sent to him as an Oval Office boy-toy. It is interesting, however, that Operation Desert Fox is a direct result of Bill's involvement with his Valley fox. So say half of Congress and quite a number of political watchers, anyway.

Actually, anyone calculating the odds would know this military action is no coincidence. It's a Wag-the-Dog scenario designed to save the presidential butt. It's another method of confusing the issue, because Clinton has no defense against impeachment. It's good theater designed to change the subject; a diversion from the impeachment action. Unfortunately, it is also getting a lot of people killed.

That this little war should have been waged months ago was self-evident. Month after month, Americans watched while Saddam Hussein jerked Bill Clinton around like a cheap yo-yo with knots in the string.

That's what it looked like, anyway. But, maybe there was an ulterior motive for Clinton's seeming inaction. Perhaps Clinton was keeping this little war as a trump card to play when needed.

For instance, last week The New York Post reported that former chief U.N. weapons inspector Scott Ritter said U.S. officials actually prodded inspection teams to return to Iraq last month to provoke a crisis to justify bombing. "What [chief U.N. weapons inspector] Richard Butler did last week with the inspections was a set-up," Ritter told The Post. "This was designed to generate a conflict that would justify a bombing."

Ritter also told The Post that U.S. government sources told him three weeks ago when the inspections resumed that the two considerations on the horizon were Ramadan [the monthlong Muslim holiday beginning this weekend] and impeachment. "You have no choice but to interpret this as 'Wag the Dog.' You have no choice," he said.

Is that a hint, or what? Let's see here . . . The House impeachment action starts heating up and looking ominous, so the White House prodded inspection teams to return to Iraq last month "to generate a conflict that would justify a bombing." The Monica lies start catching up with Clinton, so he adds another wild card into the mix in hopes that public support will rise enough that they won't impeach him. He used the American Military for personal gain, in other words. Which would also mean that he caused people to die for personal gain.

Which then means that, for the past year or more, Clinton has wasted hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars moving unused military forces around like pieces on a chess board. In so doing, he also kept a number of governments agitated and made a few of them angry at us. In other words, it looks like Clinton used high-dollar foreign intrigue to help mask lies about Oval Office sexcapades and to prop up his poll ratings in the face of an impeachment action.

Hey . . . people who know him don't call this guy "Slick" for nothing. Clinton is like a master con artist fleecing the popular opinion of a nation. He darn near pulled it off, too.

So, by the second day of Monica's war . . . err, Desert Fox . . . they ran out of the old million dollar cruise missiles and brought in human piloted aircraft for what amounts to little more than target practice with a slight diversion. Then they received a large shipment of newer cruise missiles that cost about a million and a half bucks a shot. As part of the distraction, the Pentagon also trotted a couple of generals out before the TV cameras with some great satellite pictures to play show and tell with.

Then, as suddenly as it started, it all ended. Well, if Clinton does not need it within the next few days, it may be ended. Maybe. It all depends on how the impeachment deal with the Senate goes.

Anyway, hundreds of thousands of people were inconvenienced, a few hundred people were wounded and at least two-hundred people were killed. Saddam was spanked, the White House says. Everything will be better now, we are expected to believe.

Sure . . . till the Senate trial, when they'll be needing another distraction.

Whatever it takes to create a diversion. Whatever it takes.



 It's a little chilly most places to be scheduling outside protests, but this year that doesn't seem to matter. Even the professional protesters are out lately.

For instance, I was amazed to see that one of the older world socialist organizations is at it again. For those too young to remember, these were the very same people instrumental in starting the Vietnam war protests, and others.

Anyway, one retired scribbler I know spotted a few familiar faces agitating in front of the White House last week. And, as is their typical way of attracting attention, they somehow got the interest of quite a number of police.

It should be noted here that the professional agitators do not personally get arrested during a protest. Their trick is to incite the useful idiots into action so that some of them get arrested and make the news.

Anyway, this time the police tried to clear Pennsylvania Avenue. A couple jerks mouthed off a little and got a free ride to the police station. But, that's not really the story.

They were there to protest the bombing of Iraq, so they said. However, when questioned by media people, few knew any basic facts to back up their protest. This was, in effect, a rent-a-mob deal. That is, many people were paid to be there.

That was last Wednesday. Last Thursday, there was a slightly different type of protest, this time on Capitol Hill.

Last Thursday was the day that Jesse Jackson promised a massive protest in defense of Bill Clinton's misdeeds. Jackson called it an anti-impeachment rally. Either way, they were protesting in support of extramarital affairs, lying, perjury, obstruction of justice and encouraging others to lie.

Well, sure enough, at the appointed time, the chartered busses full of protesters drove up. Some busses were filled with members of a couple Black churches, some held Democratic Party workers and others brought whoever they could scrounge up at the union halls. In other words, Jesse Jackson ordered up an instant rent-a-mob. All in all, there were a few hundred people attending -- just not the impressive protest Jesse thought he could attract. Regardless, organizers passed out the pre-printed signs and the "protest" got under way.

"We should not be disenfranchised by some right-wingers who did not win at the polls and now want to win in the caucus room," the disgraced Reverend Al Sharpton told the crowd.

"We say to our Congress, 'Be fair, be mature, be consistent,'" Jackson told the crowd. "He has done wrong. He deserves to be rebuked, reprimanded. Like all men who have sinned, he's fallen short of the glory of God," Jackson said. However, Jesse still wants this sinner as president. Jackson said he favored censure for Clinton, not impeachment.

That's about as good as it got that afternoon.

Again, media people questioned some of the protesters. Again, the scribblers were not able to go into any depth with the protesters. They indicated that they did not want Clinton impeached, that it was only about sex, and it should only be between Clinton and his wife. Reports were that, other than slinging personal attacks at Republicans, none of the protesters wanted to go into it any farther than that -- even if they could, that is.

When the event ended, the "protesters" got back on their respective chartered busses and were returned to wherever it was they were found.

Another "pro Clinton Protest" was held in San Francisco's Justin Hermann Plaza. Again, the organizers brought in Democratic Party activists, union roustabouts and members of area church groups. Onlookers said that it looked like they must have just wanted a body count for that function because they had the impression that some in that crowd were actually "illiterate and somewhat dysfunctional."

Contrast those "protests" with the excellent adventure had by Roger, Connie and Bob of the Free Republic web site. Jim Robinson, owner of the Free Republic site, suggested one night a few months ago that he would like to sit in front of the White House and protest Clinton. Roger, Connie and Bob volunteered to go with him.

They then started talking about their dream protest on the Free Republic discussion forum, which immediately attracted a few more people. And, within a couple weeks, thousands of people from all areas of the country were talking about meeting in Washington for the big protest.

Roger, Connie, Bob and Jim had their protest last October -- joined by a few thousand of their friends and a great line-up of speakers and newsmakers. The media who attended were participants. The lawyers who attended were participants. So too were the police officers, the physicians, and the butchers, bakers and candlestick makers.

"The event was funded through donations and sales of T-shirts and ball caps," Bob from California said. "All participants were responsible for their own transportation and lodging. I would add that all the signs exhibited were made by the exhibitees. No mass production."

There are protests and then there are Protests, folks. Some of the Free Republic people spent nearly a couple thousand bucks to be there for that weekend. Because, not only did they throw a great protest, they also had a great weekend among 5,000 or so friends.

Oh . . . and there were no people rounded up and bussed in. It wasn't necessary. All geographical areas and demographics of America were already represented for another reason: The people believed in the cause and wanted to attend.



 It's been quite some time since we have taken a vacation. We've been planning one for quite a while, but it seems that interesting news never stops breaking. Anyway, the next two weeks seems like an excellent time.

So, the next issue of Heads Up will be dated January 10, 1999 -- just in time to report on the impeachment trial in the Senate.

The Senate will, of course, require some "special attention" from us. They must not be allowed to pull any fancy parliamentary tricks or pass any strange resolutions and/or adjournments. Our Constitution calls for a simple trial in the Senate, with the Chief Justice presiding. We must "inform" them that is what we expect to see -- and that is ALL we expect to see. No foolishness.

Meanwhile, this is the season of the year when we should all make it a point to do something nice for the people around us. And, in the spirit of Christmas, quietly do something nice for someone who does not expect it -- whatever it takes to make their life just a little better. Then, don't tell anyone.

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.