Commander in chief, chiefly nonsensical…

February 6, 2007

George Bush has taken to referring to himself as our “commander in chief” whenever he’s defending his dubious actions and policies, whether they be in Iraq, wire tapping, detentions, or other secret policies. 

No surprise there as far as spins go, but Garry Wills has an interesting article in Jan. 27  New York Times (unfortunately, you have to have a premium account to view the article online, so I’ve just provided a link to the main site), and noted in the current edition of The Week (an excellent weekly wrap of US & international news).

“The president is not our commander in chief,” says Wills.  “The Constitution says the president is the commander in chief of the Army and Navy of the United States,” not of the citizenry.  “The phrase is not a synonym for ‘president,’ though it’s often used as one.”

Wills notes that this spin is an ominous shift, as it indicates that “the citizenry at large is now thought of as under military disciple,” and any disagreement is thought to be insubordination, if not treason.

This has been obvious for some time – any disagreement seen as treason — but it’s nice for Wills to point it out yet again to the people being manipulated.  Maybe one of these times, they’ll notice.


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