From Volume 5, Issue Number 2 of EIR Online, Published Jan. 10, 2006

This Week You Need To Know

Judge Samuel Alito and the 'Führerprinzip'

by Jeffrey Steinberg

On Jan. 5, 2006, in a front-page story, the Wall Street Journal identified Judge Samuel Alito, President George W. Bush's nominee to replace Justice Sandra Day O'Connor on the U.S. Supreme Court, as a leading proponent of the savagely unconstitutional doctrine of the "unitary executive." The idea of the "unitary executive," which forms the core dogma of the ultra-right-wing Federalist Society, to which Judge Alito belongs, is more properly identified by its modern historical name—the Führerprinzip, authored by the Nazi regime's anointed "Crown Jurist" Carl Schmitt. Schmitt's doctrine, that the charismatic head of state is the law, and can assert absolute dictatorial authority during periods of emergency, has been used to legitimize every totalitarian regime in the West, from Hitler, through Gen. Francisco Franco in Spain, through Gen. Augusto Pinochet in Chile, to President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney in the United States.

The Wall Street Journal quoted Judge Alito from a November 2000 speech, delivered, appropriately, before a Federalist Society convention in Washington, D.C. The Constitution, Alito declared, "makes the President the head of the executive branch, but it does more than that. The President has not just some executive powers, but the executive power—the whole thing."

Judge Alito elaborated, "I thought then"—referring to his 1980s tenure at the U.S. Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel—"and I still think, that this theory best captures the meaning of the Constitution's text and structure," adding that, in his view, the Framers "saw the unitary executive as necessary to balance the huge power of the legislature and the factions that may gain control of it."

After reviewing the Wall Street Journal account, Lyndon LaRouche declared, "If Judge Alito does in fact adhere to the views reported in the Wall Street Journal, he should not be allowed near any court—certainly not the United States Supreme Court—except as a defendant." LaRouche insisted that Alito's nomination must be decisively defeated in the Senate, or the Supreme Court will fall fatally into the hands of a cabal of outright "Schmittlerian" Nazis, led by Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts, and Alito—all members of the self-avowed "conservative revolutionary" Federalist Society....

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