Monday, July 6, 2009

"The 'Rule of Law' is dead, but the 'Rule of Man' should take no comfort from it."

Law of the Jungle: Eat or be eaten.


I happened across this op-ed in the Wall Street Journal by Mary Anastasia O'Grady. She asks a good question. You will find my emailed answer to her at the bottom.


JULY 6, 2009

Honduras at the Tipping Point

Why is the U.S. not supporting the rule of law?

Hundreds of emails from Hondurans flooded my in-box last week after I reported on the military's arrest of President Manuel Zelaya, as ordered by the Supreme Court, and his subsequent banishment from the country.

Mr. Zelaya's violations of the rule of law in recent months were numerous. But the tipping point came 10 days ago, when he led a violent mob that stormed a military base to seize and distribute Venezuelan-printed ballots for an illegal referendum.
All but a handful of my letters pleaded for international understanding of the threat to the constitutional democracy that Mr. Zelaya presented. One phrase occurred again and again: "Please pray for us."

Hondurans have good cause for calling on divine intervention: Reason has gone AWOL in places like Turtle Bay and Foggy Bottom. Ruling the debate on Mr. Zelaya's behavior is Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chávez, who is now the reigning international authority on "democracy."

Mr. Chávez is demanding that Mr. Zelaya be reinstated and is even threatening to overthrow the new Honduran president, Roberto Micheletti. He's leading the charge from the Organization of American States (OAS). The United Nations and the Obama administration are falling in line.

Is this insane? You bet. . .

Predictably, Washington's endorsement of the flawed electoral process was a green light. Mr. Chávez grew more aggressive, emboldened by his "legitimate" status. He set about using his oil money to destabilize the Bolivian and Ecuadorean democracies and to help Nicaragua's Daniel Ortega and Argentina's Cristina Kirchner get elected. Soviet-backed Fidel Castro was able to intimidate his neighbors in the 1960s and '70s, and Mr. Chávez has done the same thing in the new millennium. This has given him vast power at the OAS.

Hondurans had the courage to push back. Now Chávez-supported agitators are trying to stir up violence. Yesterday afternoon airline service was suspended in Tegucigalpa when Mr. Zelaya tried to return to the country and his plane was not permitted to land. There were reports of violence between his backers and troops.

This is a moment when the U.S. ought to be on the side of the rule of law, which the Honduran court and Congress upheld. If Washington does not reverse course, it will be one more act of appeasement toward an ambitious and increasingly dangerous dictator.

Subject:"Rule of Law" is dead, but "Rule of Man" should take no comfort from it.
Date: 7/6/2009 8:54:59 A.M. Central Daylight Time
From: GeorgeMason1776
To: O'

re: Your question, Why is the U.S. not supporting the rule of law in Honduras?

Ms. O'Grady,

If this administration is busy killing the rule of law in this country (and it is), why should we expect anything less in its foreign policy? The "Rule of Law," madam, is dead. However, the "Rule of Man" should take no comfort from its competitor's demise. In the chaos that will ensue, both within and without our country, the Obamanoids will discover that if the law no longer protects the least of us, it does not protect the Mandarin class either. If power and power alone is now the rule of the day, and eat or be eaten the mantra, the previously law-abiding can develop an appetite as well, if only in self-defense. And there are very many more of us than there are of them. Scant comfort it will be to the international victims of our deceit who wrongly trusted us and to our swiftly dying Republic.

Mike Vanderboegh
PO Box 926
Pinson, AL 35126


Anonymous said...

As well as being more numerous, "we" the lower non-Mandarin class are better armed. We can (and will) defend ourselves when it becomes necessary. This is not ancient China or Japan, where only the feudal lords, samurai, Mandarins, or other upper class (or those in their employ) were "legally" armed.

This was the main reason for the 2A, to keep the government (at all levels) "scared honest". But apparently the headband has been wound too tight, the blinders put on too close to the eyes; so that the blood has been restricted to the brain and the eyes can't see the obvious going on around them.

B Woodman
SSG (Ret) US Army

Anonymous said...

Her premise, on its face, is misleading: The Honduran Congress ordered the arrest of their president for violating and abrogating their Constitution.

They were, in fact, following the "rule of law" versus the rule of men.

It's also ironic that our own president joined Chavez and Castro in condemning the Hondurans for maintaining the letter of their Supreme Law.

One wonders what that says about our own president's agenda?


Oldfart said...

"One" might wonder but I don't.

Anonymous said...

Do any recall the Aristide debacle in Haiti?

Anonymous said...

"Rule of Law" IMO expired in the USA
sometime in March 2005, with the Terri Schiavo non-intervention. I personally find it significant that the Kelo SCOTUS decision came down shortly after that. So much for life and the "pursuit of happiness" Liberty's derogations are well chronicled here and elsewhere, but one should mention the 2006 SCOTUS
Hudson decision stating that the "new police professionalism" will guard against LEO abuses. For how that works out see David Codrea's
"Only Ones" files at his blog
WarOnGuns and Radley Balko, the author of Overkill at his site

The recent auto company decisions
were discussed here earlier. I am dismayed at how many putatively adult, self supporting citizens I know who don't see the implications.

Anonymous said...

Our Constitution is supposedly the supreme law of the land, but it received its death blow under Roosevelt when he told the Supreme Court he would institute the New Deal Legislation over their objections even if that required appointing additional Justices until he had the votes... and they backed down. Since then, so many usurpations of Power have occurred: our Constitution dies the "death of a thousand cuts".

Anonymous said...

Conjecture as to when "the rule of law" expired must include Mr. Lincoln's War of Northern Agression; of course one might go further back and decide that George Washington's intervention in the Whiskey Rebellion started the ball rolling.

Anonymous said...

What is the rule of law?

I seem to be confused we have a constitution and a thing called the Bill of Rights but that’s ignored by the powers to be when it’s convenient.

Its even been described as a G-D piece of paper!

Has far as Honduras I heard 2 different views one is that president Zdaya’s is actually fighting against the American oligarchy and the other view is that president Zdaya’s tried to lead a coup and force an illegal referendum.

The only thing left for me is to try and do all that I can for my family.