Friday, December 01, 2006

Minced Garlic: New Keith Olbermman Special Comment - Free speech and the delusion of grandeur

Is the Republican Party, forging their way in the new millennium, planning on sustaining themselves by practicing Constitutional Cannibalism?

First, we have our Court-Appointed President chowing down on Habeas Corpus (after grazing on a steady diet of governing via Signing Statements) and now we have the OKOKS (Original King of K Street), former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, looking to sauté Free Speech.

Last night, our anchor-hero, MSNBC Countdown host Keith Olbermann, weighed in with a Special Comment - Free speech and the delusion of grandeur.

Gingrich delivered his comments, ironically, at the Loeb First Amendment Award Dinner in New Hampshire earlier this week. In keeping up with the GOP/RNC theme of fear, talking about terrorism, the OKOKS offered that “we need to "reexamine freedom of speech" in order to "get ahead of the curve before we actually lose a city, which I think could happen in the next decade."

(Emphasis added)

To which Olbermann characterized the speech as an “arsonist give the keynote address at a convention of firefighters.”

“We will adopt rules of engagement that use every technology we can find,” Mr. Gingrich continued about terrorists, formerly communists, formerly hippies, formerly Fifth Columnists, formerly anarchists, formerly Redcoats, “to break up their capacity to use the Internet, to break up their capacity to use free speech.”

Mr. Gingrich, the British “broke up our capacity to use free speech” in the 1770s.

The pro-slavery leaders “broke up our capacity to use free speech” in the 1850s.

The FBI and CIA “broke up our capacity to use free speech” in the 1960s.

It is in those groups where you would have found your kindred spirits, Mr. Gingrich.

He wants to somehow ban the idea.

Even though everyone who has ever protested a movie or a piece of music or a book has learned the same lesson:

Try to suppress it, and you only validate it.

Make it illegal, and you make it the subject of curiosity.

Say it cannot be said, and it will instead be screamed.

In his, once again, ironically, free speech, Gingrich also offered that “I further think, we should propose a Geneva convention for fighting terrorism, which makes very clear that those who would fight outside the rules of law, those who would use weapons of mass destruction, and those who would target civilians are in fact subject to a totally different set of rules, that allow us to protect civilization by defeating barbarism …”

To which Olbermann promptly asks “Well, Mr. Gingrich, what is more “massively destructive” than trying to get us to give you our freedom?”

Olbermann also offers a tremendous, devastating movie quote that frames, quite well, the lunacy of OKOKS Gingrich’s ideology.

“Rallying a nation,” you might say, “to hysteria, to sweep us up into the White House with powers that will make martial law seem like anarchy.”

That’s from the original version of the movie “The Manchurian Candidate” — the chilling words of Angela Lansbury’s character, as she first promises to sell her country to the Chinese and Russians, then reveals she’ll double-cross them and keep all the power herself, waving the flag every time she subjugates another freedom.


Read Free speech and the delusion of grandeur; Keith Olbermann responds to Newt Gingrich’s comments about free speech

(There’s links here to the video, as well as previous night’s report on OKOKS Gingrich’s speech, and the discussion with George Washington University law professor and constitutional law expert Jonathan Turley)

From the Manchester Union Leader - Gingrich raises alarm at event honoring those who stand up for freedom of speech

'Beginning of the end of America'; Olbermann addresses the Military Commissions Act in a special comment

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things Newt Gingrich Would Like To Reexamine

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