Right wing calls for military coup

September 30, 2009 | By | 14 Replies More

Occasionally, items in the news make me sit up and take notice of how far from a constitutional republic we really have come.  Like this:

There is a remote, although gaining, possibility America’s military will intervene as a last resort to resolve the “Obama problem.” Don’t dismiss it as unrealistic.

That’s the opening salvo from John Perry, a regular columnist with the right-wing website Newsmax, in an article entitled “Obama risks a Domestic Military ‘Intervention'”.  I would like nothing more than to provide you with a link to the whole article, but it has apparently disappeared down the memory hole.  Perhaps the editors at Newsmax realized it would be inconvenient to have an article speculating on the potential for a military coup at the same time they are trumpeting the peacefulness of the tea-party protestors and wondering why anyone would accuse them of encouraging dangerous, violent extremism.  The quote I harvested above came from Mediamatters.org, which detailed this story yesterday.  Unfortunately, the did not reproduce the full column.  I managed to grab a screenshot of the Newsmax website search function, which proves that the article really did exist, although the hyperlink for the article now returns visitors to the main Newsmax page.

It’s easy to see why the article may be unpopular, not the least because of it’s internal inconsistency.  Consider this passage:

General of the Army Douglas MacArthur smoking his corncob pipe, probably at Manila, Philippine Islands, 2 August 1945 via Wikipedia (commons)

General of the Army Douglas MacArthur smoking his corncob pipe, probably at Manila, Philippine Islands, 2 August 1945 via Wikipedia (commons)

Imagine a bloodless coup to restore and defend the Constitution through an interim administration that would do the serious business of governing and defending the nation. Skilled, military-trained, nation-builders would replace accountability-challenged, radical-left commissars. Having bonded with his twin teleprompters, the president would be detailed for ceremonial speech-making.

I must admit that I’m having difficulty imagining a military coup to “restore and defend the Constitution”.  How could such a coup propose to be acting in defense of the constitution at the same time they are deposing their constitutionally appointed commander-in-chief?  And I’m almost certain that the constitution had something in there about a role for the executive that included more than “ceremonial speech-making”, but perhaps my memory is faulty.

In any case, this sort of fetishism of the military is dangerous on its own right.  I can’t understand how the right (which used to be opposed to putting the military in a nation-building role; remember Bosnia?) feels that the military–especially one that just led an overthrow of the existing government– could possibly be more accountable than those in the status quo.  And I’ll freely grant that there’s not much accountability now, but can anyone explain how that accountability would be enhanced through a military coup?

But perhaps I’m expecting too much from John Perry.  Out of morbid curiosity, I read his previous article as well, entitled “Obama’s Policies Have U.S. at Crossroads of Survival“.  In it, Mr. Perry urges us to ignore “the relatively picayune distractions such as climate change, medical care, education, press freedom and responsibility…” and focus instead on the real crisis: that is, the  “evolutionary death struggle between tyrannical Islamist extremism and what’s left of Western civilization”.  He cautions that “A few more bone-headed decisions at home and in dealing with America’s enemies abroad, and Western civilization could go gurgling down history’s drain — or, more aptly, up in radioactive dust.”  Wow, I’m having trouble coming up wit the words to express all that’s wrong with this world view.   Suffice it to say, that I’d much prefer we focus on those picayune distractions like climate change, education, etc… rather than beating the drums for more war with “Islamist extremism”.


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Category: Law, Military

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is a full-time wage slave and part-time philosopher, writing and living just outside Omaha with his lovely wife and two feline roommates.

Comments (14)

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  1. I have no doubt that the religious fanatics who are joining the army now are having wet dreams about setting things to their hand by the time they form the bulk of the army. Talk of restoring and defending the Constitution is convenient for now. "Restoring" means swiping the content under the rug and replacing it with whatever suits them when the time comes.

    When the Constitution is simply taken for granted, there is actually a chance this may come to pass.

  2. Tim Hogan says:

    On the face of it, the article violates the Smith Act, 18 USC Section 2385 which specifically outlaws such speech and advocacy.

    The specific court cases related to any balancing of First Amendment speech concerns all grant that there is an overwhelmingly superior governmental interest in preserving national security and upheld such convictions. Dennis v. US, 341 US 494, 499-500 (1961); Yates v. US, 354 US 298, 334 (1957).

    These yappers have no First Amendment right to "…knowingly or willfully advocate [sic], abet [sic], advise[sic], or

    teach[sic]the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of

    overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States…"

    Gee, I wonder if they'll be "law and order" GOPers after this fiasco?

  3. dave says:

    Pron. Political porn. Just because there's no supple skin and pink bits, it can still be porn: lascivious, enticing, and ultimately debasing and lewd. I would think that most of us put NewsMax right down there with The National Equirer, Pravda.ru, and 4chan (okay, 4chan is actually pretty accurate some of the time).

    The point I am so clumsily trying to make is this: just because you read something somewhere on som salacious website trying to be sensationalist, doesn't mean a damned thing. The Internet is a wide wacky world. There are Nazis out there with their own blogs, as are NAMBLA and other sickos. So what?

    Not to equivocate, but– there was plenty of ranting a few years back that George Bush would declare martial law in order to stay in power under the War Powers Act.

    I am convinced that "Seven Days in May" comes on late-night cable rotation once in a while, and people get whipped up. Meh.

    Right wing nutjobs seem to gravitate toward militaristic simplistic solutions. These same nutjobs never took the oath, and come as labelled: nutjobs. Who cares?

  4. Sarah Connor says:

    You can find the entire text of the article here:


  5. Erich Vieth says:

    Media Matters is collecting right-wing calls for revolution, with some insinuations of violent revolution.


  6. Leonid S. Sukhorukov says:

    * The best weapon against warmongers is a peaceful solution. Leonid S. Sukhorukov

  7. Lee says:

    Consider the interference with private enterprise, the automobile industry and wall street. The socialization of government and economy. The appointment of far left anti American czars to attain what ends? The left's hate crimes laws, ever read 1984? Persecuting the CIA personnel who strive to protect the American people while releasing the terrorists. Redistributing the wealth. Wildly excessive taxes. I could go on for a long while. A bloodless military coup to restore a constitutional government would be far preferable to a bloody civil war. As the declaration on Independence says:

    "But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security".

    • Erich Vieth says:

      Lee . . . Tell me, before we discuss this any further. In your opinion, name a few laws or regulations passed by the federal government that are proper, in your opinion. Are there any? If so, on what constitutional or moral basis are they proper? If you can't name any, then we have nothing much to discuss. If you can name some, we ought to see whether we agree as to the criteria for making federal laws.

      And also, would you have allowed Chrysler and GM go down the tubes?
      Perhaps we might even agree regarding Wall Street.

  8. Jay Fraz says:

    It is funny, it is almost like the belief in democracy has been replaced by a belief in "capitalism". Of course when freedom is defined by only your ability to buy stuff, is their truly any freedom left?

  9. Tim Hogan says:

    Lee, it's been a whopping nine months of Obama, and you think it compares to what went down before we got the Declaration of Independence? I think you need better meds!

  10. Barry Hussein says:

    It is time for a bloodless military coup. We need to replace all 535 members of Congress with elections to be held 90 days after the coup. The election for President should occur 180 days after Obama has been removed. The new Congress can decide whether or not to charge Obama with crimes against the constitution.

  11. Jay Fraz says:

    Barry : Can we elect the same leaders who have been removed? How do you choose who can run in your elections?

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