Pathetic “Mission Creed” and Why the Executive Needs to Be Checked

Ongoing revelations about the U. S. National Security Agency (NSA) and its routine disregard of Due Process as well as all other fundamental constitutional as well as general human rights-related rules show the probably cause of the agency’s way of acting. Art Greenwald, Pulitzer Award-winning journalist and publisher of Edward Snowden’s documents explained in a recent interview what motivates NSA agents to constantly break all kinds of legal regulations, political rules, and common sense.

Rather than any kind of “conspiracy”, the problem with the NSA’s out-of-control behavior is rooted in a pathetic sense of “Mission Creed” among its personnel. That way, the continuous encroachment on our liberties by this (and other) increasingly rogue agency can be perfectly explained by Bureaucracy Theory (Halperin, Why Bureaucrats Play Games, FP 2,1971 — also see http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/1147860?uid=3739256&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21104064883377).

Because this old and well-established scholarly observation has a lot going for it, the — even older — principles of famous Checks and Balances in the U. S. Constitution are so important for each branch of government to prevent run-away behavior of another.

This is why Obama and Baby-Bush administrations have been so damaging to America: no other president in history has ruled by executive order, and effectively dictatorial decree, as frequently as Obama and Bush jr. — and this despite a constitution whose authors already knew better, even without having witnessed actual Madmen in the White House.

For more on this commentary, also listen to Audio of Book introduction: Glenn Greenwald, No Place to Hide