Game over, folks


n 1: a sudden and decisive change of government illegally or by force [syn: coup d'etat, putsch, takeover]

Source: WordNet ® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University

I think most of us have had a sneaking suspicion that our government is being slowly subverted by the Bushistas from a democracy into a military dictatorship for awhile now. What I think we're just now coming to realize -- especially with the revelation of the illegal wiretapping a few weeks ago, along with the torture bill's "signing statement -- is that the coup we keep seeing on the horizon? Already happened.

I'd be hard pressed to give an exact date -- this isn't like a military coup, with guys with guns storming the Congress like we're used to seeing in unstable Central American countries. But at this point, any pretense that we're still a functioning democratic republic is, frankly, laughable. I mean, when the President states, on camera, that he's breaking the law and will continue to do so, when he signs bills into law with the express caveat that he is exempt from them, when he's overridden the power of one branch of government and entirely ignored the power of the other...that's a coup d'etat, my friends. Via Digby:

"It's nothing short of breath-taking," said Phillip Cooper, a professor of public administration at Portland State University. "In every case, the White House has interpreted presidential authority as broadly as possible, interpreted legislative authority as narrowly as possible, and pre-empted the judiciary."

Also via Digby:

Weldon Berger puts it this way:
The upshot of this is that until someone gets around to challenging the White House, Congress is just an advisory body with the authority to dole out bucketloads of cash. For now, we have a coup.
Digby verbalizes it better. And deserves a Pulitzer for the dead-on phrase "pusillanimous gluttony" in context.