How to Join Member's Area Private Library Search Today's Topics p Login
Main Forums Discussion Tech Talk Mature Content Archives
   Nav Win
 Discussion
 The Alley
 A Little Bit of Sanity Enters The Conver   [ Page: 1  2  3  ]
 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
Follow us on Facebook

 Moderated by: Ron   (Admins )

 
User Options
Format for Better Printing EMail to a Friend Not Available
Admin Print Send ECard
Passions in Poetry

A Little Bit of Sanity Enters The Conversation

 Post A Reply Post New Topic   Go to the Next Oldest/Previous Topic Return to Topic Page Go to the Next Newest Topic 
Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


0 posted 03-07-2010 04:08 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




     I found a cool and lovely sense of perspective that came settling over me when I read this article in the Christian Science Monitor.  It takes on the kerfuffle recently stirred up by Liz Cheyney.  She has made unsavory allegations about the Department of Justice and Lawyers who now work for them.  She feels that seven of them, who apparently took on the defense of Al Qaeda members or other justly unpopular folk, are by that service now unfit for public service.  In doing so, she shows a lack of understanding of the constitution, the law, and the practice of the law that beggars the imagination.

     She is supported in her foolishness by a rogues' gallery of the usual culprits, such as Mr. Hannity and Mr Krauthammer.

     She is not supported in her foolishness by a significant number of officials from the Bush administration, and by Conservatives who actually have some understanding of the issues at hand.  I recommend the article, and I would like to hear any comments you would be interested in sharing.
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/The-Vote/2010/0306/Liz-Cheney-Taking-flak-from-the-right-as-well-as-the-left
JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


1 posted 03-07-2010 05:37 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Instead of questioning the loyalty of seven DOJ lawyers who seem to understand the Constitution and Bill of Rights far better than she does, perhaps Cheney should instead question the loyalty of someone whose lies were instrumental in leading the country into an illegal, unnecessary war which caused the deaths of thousands of American troops.
Grinch
Member Elite
since 12-31-2005
Posts 2710
Whoville


2 posted 03-07-2010 06:11 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


It’s just another consequence of bad floor painting Bob, where the idiot in the corner who convinced you he was a painter and knew what he was doing blames everyone but himself and can’t see where he went wrong.

History is littered with examples of demonization that got out of hand, where those creating the bogeyman suddenly forget that they made it all up and start to believe it themselves. I don’t think they’re particularly bad people, in fact, odd as it might seem it probably takes an inherent urge to “do the right thing” to bend the laws of logic so spectacularly. It’s easy to see how it happens, take McCarthyism.

For years Americans were told that those evil, baby eating commies were scheming and conniving to invade downtown Yourville. Military commanders demanded more and more money to create bigger and better toys, sorry weapons, to keep the Russian hoards at bay. The problem was that people were convinced, they were very very convinced, and some of them were in a perfect position to do something about it. Once the military threat was covered people started thinking about how those cunning Russians might fulfil their dastardly plans, destroying the country from within was a popular notion.

Spies and infiltrators of positions of power and influence were a natural successor to the bogeyman myth and McCarthy convinced himself and a whole bunch of other people that it was a real threat and that something must be done about it.

Should McCarthy be blamed? Well he was certainly part of the problem, he perpetuated the bogeyman myth that created the situation where he felt had to do something about it – he, in effect, painted himself into a corner but the American people were right behind him handing him the paint.

It’s a dangerous thing - this myth of Al Qaeda, it's got so out of hand and gives floor painters a bad name.


Tim
Senior Member
since 06-08-99
Posts 1801


3 posted 03-07-2010 11:51 PM       View Profile for Tim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Tim

When a lawyer crosses the line from the practice of law into the practice of politics, then you have to consider possible conflicts of interest.

If William Kunstler had joined the Department of Justice in the 60's then more than a few eyebrows would have been rightfully raised.

If corporate counsel for either Exxon or the Sierra Club would join the EPA as staff counsel, then questions should be asked.

I think I have a fair to middlin concept of the legal profession and ethical obligations of attorneys.

The justice department is just a tad bit politicized.  Holder's politics had as much to do with his selection as attorney general as his legal abilities.

US Attorneys amazingly are the same political party as the President.

The problem is not releasing the names of the lawyers.  Were they acting as lawyers when they represented detainees, or were they lawyers advancing their political agendas?

I have prosecuted as well as defended first degree murderers.  I was doing my job.  I was not interjecting my personal political views.  When I ran for office, I laid open my legal background so those I was serving were fully aware of my background.

Can someone who represented a detainee also be a department of justice lawyer?  No question.  Should someone who was advancing a political agenda in his or her representation of a cause then work in the justice department?  Not according to legal ethics.

Yes, if they are open about their background and aren't trying to advance a political agenda.  This we do not know.  They are public employees and therefore, the public should know who is representing them. Are they are doing so as unbiaed lawyers, or to advance political aims.
Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


4 posted 03-08-2010 04:13 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Tim, I think you have an interesting point.  I'm not certain I agree with it, though.  A political point can be as simple as, everybody deserves a good defense, and the more bloodthirsty the outcry, the greater the need.  If you'll look at the supporting articles, I think you'll see John Adams making this nsort of point about his defense of the British soldiers who were on trial for the Boston Massacre back in 1771 or thereabouts.  I'm uncertain if it was Adams who also defended the Slaves who revolted on the slaveship Armistad in the 1920s or so, another defense that was very political at the time, but which he undertook on grounds that seemed to him to be both legal and political at the same time.

     I believe, this being after his Presidency, that he was serving in Congress at the time.  Should he have been forced to give up his seat for defending a slave revolt, or for defending British soldiers for that matter?  Or do we feel differently about matters of conscience in this country than that?

     Should we support Ms Cheyney and Mr Hannity and Mr Krauthammer for their condemnation of these lawyers in their defense of civil liberties?  What they were doing is making sure that defendants got a good defense, and doing trhe best job, hopefully, that they could manage to do with it.  It seems unlikely that the lawyers themselves would be interested in becoming Jihadis, since jihadis are a relatively minority position even in islamic communities, though it certainly could be so.

     Why a Jihadi would be interested in becoming a lawyer in the Justice department afterwards, however, is a bit larger stretch more me, however.  What's the jihadi going to do, pursue civil rights cases with more vigor and make the government look better overseas?  Or with less vigor, perhaps, and make the this government look more like we did during the Bush Administration?

     It's hard to tell exactly what sort of damage they might actually be able to do, while the damage that Ms Cheyney and friends can do is fairly obvious.  And some former Bush administration officials are starting to speak up about it.  Good for them.  
JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


5 posted 03-08-2010 05:04 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

To me it seems  rather unethical to smear people who haven’t even been accused of any wrong-doing by labeling them the Al-Qaeda 7. Perhaps that’s the reason Holder was reluctant to release names, he could see a smear coming that would hurt innocent people. Seems more like Cheney was trying to create a dual purpose distraction, a ploy to take the focus off Yoo, Bybee, Cheney and the Torture Memos while cranking up the fear factor - jihadists in the DOJ.

threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


6 posted 03-08-2010 02:49 PM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

in a word (or three)

lack of impartiality
in selection.

Seems to me these 7 lawyers were REWARDED
by the Obama admin
for defending terrorist rights.
To promote them into the role of Prosecutors
is legal blasphemy.

I've seen the blogs demonizing Liz Cheney, and they ALL miss the point:
after Obama's debacle of deciding WHERE to try the terrorists, and flip flopping a half dozen times, he appoints 7 prosecutors in the dead of night, without full disclosure of their names.  Cheney gets some inkling that they are the Defense Lawyers of Al Q terrorists in the past.  All 7.

It's a matter of justice and perception and the precarious balancing act of both:  It seems idiotic to appoint 7 lawyers who knew they would be pariahs to the legal community, and LITERALLY LEPT at the chance to defend the terrorists originally.  It wasn't until Liz Cheney exposed WHO they were (without naming names) that the Obama Admin FINALLY released their names.  

So once more, Obama had a chance to show that he was TOUGH on terrorism, and he didn't.
So once more, Obama showed people metaphorically that he cares more about terrorists rights than justice.  Which is more important?  Where is the balance?
And more importantly, he tried to hide it until Cheney called him out.  
These appointments all scream:
conflict of interest, given that the lawyers were ALL defenders of terrorist actions.

Let us not forget, these are not soldiers.
They don't wear flags
They don't wear uniforms
and they attack civilians specifically.

Obama's made a huge mess out of the terrorist situation: from Guantanamo, to the Illinois prison, to KSM's trial, to the appointment of former terrorist defense lawyers.

It's about time SOMEONE called him out on his judicial lunacy.    

[This message has been edited by threadbear (03-08-2010 04:41 PM).]

JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


7 posted 03-08-2010 05:47 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Are you disagreeing with the Supreme Court and saying that those held at Gitmo didn’t have the right to due process, Jeff?  If so, could you explain why you disagree?

I think it’s important to remember those at Gitmo were alleged terrorists, persons of various nationalities who hadn’t been convicted or even charged, confined for years without trial or even the chance to see the evidence against them.  You seem to think that’s ok, that it’s ok to hold people for years who haven’t been charged or convicted of anything. Could you explain why that’s ok with you? Seems rather un-American to me.

Since Bush, not Obama, released most of the detainees, to your way of thinking, was he showing he cared “more about terrorists rights than justice”?

You’ve made the claim that the lawyers in question “were ALL defenders of terrorist actions”. Could you support that claim with facts? Specifically, what terrorist actions did they defend?

threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


8 posted 03-08-2010 06:13 PM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

Jennifer:
- Are you disagreeing with the Supreme Court and saying that those held at Gitmo didn’t have the right to due process, Jeff?  If so, could you explain why you disagree?
Where exactly did I say they shouldn't be represented?  

- I think it’s important to remember those at Gitmo were alleged terrorists, persons of various nationalities who hadn’t been convicted or even charged, confined for years without trial or even the chance to see the evidence against them.  You seem to think that’s ok, that it’s ok to hold people for years who haven’t been charged or convicted of anything. Could you explain why that’s ok with you? Seems rather un-American to me.
Again, you put words in my mouth I didn't say.  You should really stop that, Jennifer.  It's annoying, really, to have to respond to a statement I DIDN'T MAKE.
If you want to rephrase the question, WITHOUT making some assumption of what I 'think', I'd appreciate it.

- You’ve made the claim that the lawyers in question “were ALL defenders of terrorist actions”. Could you support that claim with facts? Specifically, what terrorist actions did they defend?
What did they defend?  The Terrorists' Motives.
JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


9 posted 03-08-2010 07:12 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

One, two and three were questions, Jeff.  If you don’t want to respond, give your opinion on whether it was ok for Cheney to smear the lawyers with an attack ad labeling them the Al Qaeda 7, or explain why you refer to the detainees being represented as “terrorists” or “Al Q terrorists” when in fact they had neither been charged or convicted of being either Al Qaeda members or  terrorists, or why it was so wrong of these lawyers to fight against illegal detention, lack of representation, etc., and whether or not Bush was as guilty of  caring “more about terrorists rights than justice” as you claim Obama is, no problem. But, in all honesty, that leaves me with the feeling you’re not really interested in discussion, but rather, just want to vent about Obama.    

Your response to my question # 4 seems a little vague, short on facts. They defended “The Terrorists’ Motives”?  I’ve read a little about how some of the lawyers in question were involved. I saw nothing about them defending “terrorists’ motives”. What terrorists, what motives?
threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


10 posted 03-08-2010 11:21 PM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

Again, Americans find themselves on seemingly two sides of the same coin.   Whether we agree or not on the right of every person to have health care, a home, or a free education, we can certainly agree that every American has the right
to justice, free speech, and the right to worship how they please.    Illegal combatants, soldiers without uniforms, are NOT given the same rights as Americans, and for good reason.   Most of the crimes of the terrorists  in Guantanamo were committed on foreign soil, and THAT nationality shipped them to us.    Every nation in the world has the right to detain civilian killers indefinitely.   Personally, I feel they forfeited the right to free legal representation when they chose to not wear a uniform and engage in civilian slaughter and terror.    Neither Bush nor Obama is under any obligation whatsoever to release them until the quote-war-unquote is finished.    The problem, therefore becomes a matter of semantics, rather than legalities.  What are the names of the people we are waging war against?  Or better said:  what are the groups that are waging war against US?

Why were the lawyers slinky in defending the terrorists or their affiliates?  Because to defend them meant they had to defend their 'motives', which is normally enough evidence to convict almost any defendant (coupled, of course, with 'opportunity.)  In my opinion, there is NO defense of terrorist civilian murder.  If the terrorists need representation, let their own group: Al Q or the Taliban, provide their legal representation.  They kill in the name of their group, but they can't get their own organization to provide legal defense for them.    In the case of the Al Q-7 lawyers, they volunteered for the duty to defend a terrorist client.  OK Fine.  I personally think it's despicable to find a legal excuse for terrorism.

I didn't mean to get atcha earlier, Jennifer:   It is difficult for me to try to defend a point of view that I didn't make.    I personally cringe whenever i see one person in a blog say: '..you must think that .....'  for that 'assumes' so much.  

[This message has been edited by threadbear (03-09-2010 12:00 AM).]

Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


11 posted 03-09-2010 01:55 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
So once more, Obama showed people metaphorically that he cares more about terrorists rights than justice.

That's not an either/or proposition. Indeed, if you don't care about everyone's rights, including terrorist's, than you don't really care about justice. The two are inseparable.

quote:
Personally, I feel they forfeited the right to free legal representation when they chose to not wear a uniform and engage in civilian slaughter and terror.

The problem, threadbear, is that you're assuming guilt rather than trying to prove it. By your standards, if I was in a position of power and accused YOU of being a terrorist and killing civilians, you should then be locked away, without trial, without any possible attempt at defending yourself.

Just for the heck of it, let's change your assumptions for a minute.

Let's assume there's at least one detainee being held at Guantanamo who is innocent. Let's assume one person there didn't kill anyone, didn't hurt anyone, didn't engage in any act of terrorism. All the rest are guilty as hell. Do you still feel justified (pun intended) in sacrificing everyone's right to representation? Is our one innocent man simply the price you are willing to pay for vengeance ('cause it sure won't be justice)? Are you really willing to set a precedent that ultimately and inevitably is going to include you, me, and our children?

Again, if you don't care about the rights of terrorists, you can't care about justice.
JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


12 posted 03-09-2010 03:15 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Everything I assumed you thought, Jeff, you proved in your last post you did. And don’t worry about getting at me, when I come to the Alley I wear both my hip boots and my thick skin. I disagree with just about everything you said, so does the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Supreme Court. But thank you for explaining your position.

Edited to include this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wrzrNvWlLQ

If nothing else, gotta love the music, Orff's finest.

And then there's this, a little less flamboyant: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfAj3S0Ly44

[This message has been edited by JenniferMaxwell (03-09-2010 05:17 AM).]

Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


13 posted 03-09-2010 03:51 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


quote:

Again, Americans find themselves on seemingly two sides of the same coin.   Whether we agree or not on the right of every person to have health care, a home, or a free education, we can certainly agree that every American has the right
to justice, free speech, and the right to worship how they please.    



     Roughly, Threadbear; I don't pretend education is free, but I do regard it as a necessity for an informed citizenry.  I believe a public education is something that should be provided all citizens through at least high school or its equivalent, and that it is a public duty to pay for the education of the young, whether you have kids or not.  I don't, and feel that paying for public education is a good investment.

     Maybe a public education good enough for people to be able to tell that they're being sold a bill of goods when somebody tries to suggest that education is free or should be, and that the public should think of the expense of paying for it as a burden rather than a privilege.  When you talk to your fellow citizens about ideas, you want a mutual understanding that citizenship must involve some basic sacrifices.  It is in everybody's mutual interest  to raise a next generation of citizens able to make informed decisions when it goes to the polls.  It needs to understand not simply the math of money, but the reality of history and how people have distorted it over the years, the way government is supposed to operate and the way it actually does operate, the nature of the the actual science of the workings of the world, the literature that explores the languages and the emotions of its peoples and so on.  Citizens without those pieces of background will have been robbed of essential bits of their humanity.

     And justice is certainly a thing that all of us should value.  

     From your discussion, I'm reasonably certain that you and I do not understand justice in the same way.  

     I understand Justice in a way that seems much closer to what Ron is talking about than to what I understand you to be talking about here, which I am not certain I would call justice at all.  I don't mean to be harsh when I say this, but I do mean to be accurate.

quote:

Illegal combatants, soldiers without uniforms, are NOT given the same rights as Americans, and for good reason.   Most of the crimes of the terrorists  in Guantanamo were committed on foreign soil, and THAT nationality shipped them to us.



     The statement you make above, as many statements made by folks sharing your particular point of view, is a statement that begs the question.

     In the American system of Justice, we tend not to let such statements go unquestioned.  We tend to ask, and to ask with the full force of the western tradition of logic and law behind us, "Who says that these people are in fact 'illegal combatants, soldiers without uniforms,[. . .or] terrorists'"?  and for that matter, "What is the standard of proof that they offer for these allegations?"  

     We do know that American forces were offering $5000.00 rewards per head for people turned in as "terrorists" in Afghanistan and in parts of Iraq, and that many of these prisoners and former prisoners were turned in to collect these rewards.  The "crimes of the terrorists in Guantanamo"  were supported by the allegations of people taking home relatively huge sums of money.  When it came time for some actual proof to be offered of these allegations, there were a lot of blockades put up to actually showing any of these proofs even to military tribunals, let alone to legal representation.  For most of these people, there was little if any actual proof offered at all, only bought accusations.  The Bush Administration, protesting the horrible danger and fanaticism of these people the whole time, released a large number of them while at the same time actively seeking to smear their names and reputations.

     What seemed to be in terribly short supply was actual proof of the allegations that Threadbear once again makes without the offer of proof, simply by making the assertions that these people are terrorists, criminals and so on.  That proof remains in sinfully short supply.

     Many countries do not need to prove that people are killers to lock them up and throw away the key.  In China or Russia, we would not be surprised to hear of such actions, nor in Iran or any number of Arab countries.  We would not approve of these actions, but we would not be surprised by them because we would tend to think of this sort of thing as tinker-toy justice, unsuitable for a serious democracy.  This is wrong-headed of us; we can be as tinker-toy as anybody, and with the Palmer Raids, or the Japanese Internment Camps we can see our own idiocy revealed.  And here it is once again, acting as though unproved wild accusations are the equal of proven truth.  Threadbear's wild accusations are not the same as proven truths.  Simply because he states them again does not prove them, though he acts as though the mere restatement of unproven allegations makes them true.  Threadbear is in general a thoughtful guy, and seeing him do this sort of thing is disturbing to me.  

quote:



    Every nation in the world has the right to detain civilian killers indefinitely.   Personally, I feel they forfeited the right to free legal representation when they chose to not wear a uniform and engage in civilian slaughter and terror.    




     More unsubstantiated stuff.  There were almost a thousand people in Gitmo at one point, and the allegation was made that they were all the most dangerous of the dangerous.  Yet we are down to under 160 now, and there have been very few that there have been actual cases built against, either military or judicial, and many have been let go, their cases unproven and unprovable.  We acknowledge Guilty and Not Guilty.  If we could not prove Guilt, what does this suggest to you?

quote:

Neither Bush nor Obama is under any obligation whatsoever to release them until the quote-war-unquote is finished.    The problem, therefore becomes a matter of semantics, rather than legalities.  What are the names of the people we are waging war against?  Or better said:  what are the groups that are waging war against US?



     No, Threadbear, I don't understand what you are saying here.  Please be specific enough for even me to understand you.

quote:


Why were the lawyers slinky in defending the terrorists or their affiliates?  



     The lawyers did not slink.  The lawyers made motions through the courts and did things in the open.  The government, by way of contrast, did everything it could to keep it methods of operation out of public scrutiny, and tried to keep the defendants from meeting from their lawyers.  Threadbear, you have this sneakiness issue turned around entirely, and you haven't given any thought as to why the government would wish to behave in this fashion.  My assumption is that they have had a lot of things to hide from public scrutiny about the way they have dealt with these alleged terrorists, and that there may be considerable that they have done that they need to be ashamed of.


quote:

In my opinion, there is NO defense of terrorist civilian murder.  If the terrorists need representation, let their own group: Al Q or the Taliban, provide their legal representation.  They kill in the name of their group, but they can't get their own organization to provide legal defense for them.  



     I agree.  That would suggest that the people involved in fact did have the connections that you say they had, and that such connections have been proven.  Doubtless, some of them did or do, and I agree with you there, though our system doesn't insist on that.  Simply because you find these folks more odious than other rotten people doesn't mean that you can treat them worse to start off with, though.  One needs to distinguish between sadistic pleasure and the necessities of justice; the talion principle is supposed to be mostly excluded from Justice.  They get appointed defense same as anybody else if nobody steps forward to defend them because they have the right to a reasonably fair trial.  You wouldn't want the verdict thrown out on appeal, would you?

     On the other hand, you actually have to prove the defendants are terrorists who have murdered civilians, threadbear.  You can't go ahead with that assumption from the beginning.

     This has nothing to do, then with finding a legal excuse for terrorism.  What it has to do with is actually making the government prove its allegations.

     You may have already convicted these folks, but you not only haven'
t heard the defense, you haven't even heard any of the particulars of the prosecutions.  What you have heard, if your hearing is anything like mine, is a list of all the reasons why we shouldn't actually have to prove why we have a right to torture people and hold them indefinitely in detention while simultaneously smearing their names and reputations without allowing them any serious chance at rebuttal.

     There are a large number of lawyers who go into law particularly to speak for those folks who've gotten the sticky end of things in their brushes with authority, and this, threadbear, is exactly that sort of situation.  A lot of these lawyer folks did and do this sort of work for the good of the community.  I happen to think it's pretty decent work.  

     I personally don't think it has anything to do with liking terrorism.  There may be some people who like terrorism, of course, but I really don't think there are a lot of them.  I happen to think that there are a lot of Americans who believe that even people who may not be popular may have gotten a seriously bad shake with the justice system, and that they are being oppressed by the government gone a bit wild with power.  Lawyers like this are trying to limit the power of government, and have a lot of the same interests that you Do, Threadbear.  They think the Government is overreaching itself and that the rights of the individuals are being trampled upon.

     In this case, I agree wholeheartedly.

threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


14 posted 03-10-2010 04:33 AM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

Ron,
To the issue of me pre-judging the detainees as guilty
If it's good enough for the Pres, it's enough to take whatever guilt i might have felt, away.
During a round of network television interviews conducted during Obama’s visit to China, the president was asked about those who find it offensive that Mohammed will receive all the rights normally accorded to U.S. citizens when they are charged with a crime.
“I don't think it will be offensive at all when he's convicted and when the death penalty is applied to him,” Obama told NBC’s Chuck Todd.
: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1109/29661.html#ixzz0hlOnpA6a
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I have to be honest, though, and say that I strongly feel that terrorists are genocidal.  Of all the things, wrong, in the world,
genocide bothers me the most.  So in my heart of hearts, I don't WANT to have any sympathy for them.  That's the emotional
side of me.  The rational side of me says to error on the side of application of fair justice.  I think the whole thing has been terrirbly
mismanaged from the beginning of the Obama Admin.  Now it looks as though we are back to where it should have been dealt with
all along:  the military tribunals.   Another internal struggle I have is choosing between which is more important:
the concept of pure justice     or    the concept of home security first, even if it breaks a few egg shells.  The libertarian in me says
justice first, you idiot!  The cautious side of me says: without security, there is no justice.  I'm really torn on this, obiously.  

In your hypothetical example of the innocent detainee:  yeah, of course I would feel guilty, but would probably justify the guilt
by washing it down with the feeling that we are safer with these guys locked up.  There WERE men released:   I doubt seriously
whether they were 'innocent'.  As Gates and Patreus said: these men were battlefield pickups, most of them surrendered.  There wasn't always alot of paperwork that accompanied each detainee, and consequently they were released by both Obama and Bush.
Under the Geneva Rules, each nation may hold any enemy combatant until the war has been ended.  This keeps detainees from returning to the same armed conflict and kill further.   EVERY modern war has had its share of detainees that weren't released until the conflict was over.  But the major difference is that this isn't a conventional war.  It's a war against a concept, for lack of a better word.  The terrorists don't represent a nation, per se, but rather an idealogy.   To answer your question in another post, Bob, i think the 200 detainees left are the 'meat' of the terrorists: guys they either have dead to rights, or are simply too dangerous to be released back into the battlefield.
------------------------------------------

[This message has been edited by threadbear (03-10-2010 05:36 AM).]

threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


15 posted 03-10-2010 04:41 AM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

Jennifer,
well, at least half your assertions were right, since I'm firmly in the middle of two saddles on this one.

  Anyway, re: your POV: I get it!  I have the same problem with lack of sympathy for rapists, baby killers, child molestors, and mass murderers.  When it comes to their rights, i really don't care much whether they get it fairly.  At the same timem, I know there are accused who are innocent.   Something inside of me doesn't WANT to sympathisize with them.  There has to be many others who are conflicted (or is it:inflicted) by this as well.

I saw that Maddow epi, just because i wanted the Liz Cheney take on it.  Geez, talk about over the top.  Maddows logic usually consists of 'not guilty' by comparison.  Drives me nuts.  "Well, he can't be guilty since Bush did the same thing" or "they didn't object when Bush did the same thing."   Neither statement proves anything:  they are deflections, and they are cheap parlor stunts deftly practiced by talk show hosts to make a Dem/Repub look bad.  

Bob, it's 444am and this puppy is too whipped to give your comments justice.  Pun intended!  Promise to get to it later on.
Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


16 posted 03-10-2010 11:21 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



    
Dear T-Bear,

          Understood, and thank you.  You talk, however, as if there was in fact a legal judgement of "innocent."  For the most part, it seems that the law is too pragmatic for that.  Everybody who brushes up against it seems to come away vaguely soiled.  While folks are, from time to time, exonerated by this or that strange process, they are always tarnished by their contact with the system in one way o another.  There is no "innocent" verdict in common use that I know of.  For the most part in criminal trials the best the law will give is a grudging "not guilty;" the meanings of this can vary widely.

     When you talk about these folks being "taken on the battlefield,"  you surely haven't examined the assertion made by these gentlemen.  Questions remain: Taken on which battlefields, by which forces, when, where and under which circumstances?  If these folks were taken in Iraq, who identified them as "terrorists?" and why were such identifications made?  The battles we fought in Iraq, as I recall, were with Iraqi army forces for the most part, including Republican Guard, and for the most part these forces were uniformed, weren't they?  They had nothing to do with AL Qaeda, who for the most part were  not Baathist at all, and in fact were at odds with those folks.

     Perhaps five or six years later, when there actually developed something called "Al Qaeda in Iraq," a reasonably small franchise organization.  But not while we were collecting prisoners for Gitmo.

     The other source of "battlefield" prisoners was from Afghanistan.  Perhaps you've forgotten the way that we fought that war, at least in the beginning.

      It was a special forces war.  We tried to keep the actual number of American troops small.  We fought it, as much as possible, by proxy.  We used our special forces to spread around a lot of money and to do a lot of negotiation with people who were bitterly opposed to the Taliban.  The Taliban, an extremely rigid-right wing  Muslim religious reform organization, had been our allies during the time that the Russians occupied the country.  They were hooked in with Osama Bin Ladin, who had also been our ally at that time.  He had been the same sort of guy, of course, but because he was our guy at that time, he was a Freedom Fighter against the Soviets rather than a "Terrorist" against us.

     This is one of the difficulties of a "War Against Terror."  It's becomes hard to tell the players without a program.  The behavior doesn't change very much.  The justification for the behavior doesn't change very much.  People's essential selves and motives don't change very much.  The designators of good or evil will change depending upon whom you ally yourself with.  George Orwell was a very cynical man and an extremely astute observer.

     We, I assert, didn't have enough troops in the country to capture and question the number of prisoners "on the battlefield" that the generals say we did.  For one thing, we didn't have enough translators, and we still don't; certainly not enough translators with skills in interrogation to make a proper sorting.  We depended on our allies to do this, for the most part.

     And who, one might wonder, were our allies?

     Well, they are the same folks who didn't want anybody with a religious bias in control of Afghanistan.  (Fine so far.)  And whose activities would be curtailed by repressive religious activity (also fine, so far).  The good part of this might include, freedom for women, modernization of the schools, a more democratic society, more of a openness to the world and other fine things.

     The down side would be that the central government would no longer be trying to restrain the power of the folks who allied themselves with us.  These included a lot of warlords who had interests in things like poppies and local empires, which the Taliban had tried to suppress.  The net result is that the current government has essentially no power outside Kabul, the population feels that it is back in a feudal situation, and the Taliban is no longer seen as such a terrible thing.  There has also been an uptick in the Opium trade.

     These are the folks who brought in the "terrorist" prisoners for Gitmo.  We paid them $5000.00 apiece for these prisoners.   Do you really think that these prisoners were closely examined before being turned in for being anything approaching actual terrorists?  Surely, some of them must have been, if only as a matter of chance, but  to accept these "terrorists" as real, and to torture them on the basis of this sort of vetting is stupid, if only on the basis of logic, which would suggest you'd create more enemies out of harmless people than you'd gain intelligence from actual bad folks.

     This is an untestable conclusion, frankly.

     But our government, first the Bush Government and now the Obama Government has not been forthcoming about any incidents that '"enhanced" interrogations of  prisoners have prevented.  The incidents that have been offered have, it seems, been shown to have been based on information  gathered beforehand or in other ways.  The whole business is ethically very difficult.

     What is clear is that the country has suffered enormously from the series of black eyes we have earned ourselves by our treatment of these folks, while the actual gain has proven elusive or possibly nonexistent.  We have paid out a lot of reward money, but to war-lords and criminals who have been doing their best to bring a unified Afghanistan to its knees, or at least to prevent a unified Afghanistan from rising above them.

     The proof of what you, Threadbear, repeatedly call these remaining folks at Gitmo, including the word "Terrorists," is still only an allegation for many of them.
You can call anybody anything, Threadbear; but proving it is something else indeed.  You are fast with the accusations, which you support with reports of other people making accusations.   The report that prisoners have been taken on the battlefield may or may not be true.  If the reports were made by our troops, I'd say they have some basis.

     But what that says is that we have folks fighting to protect Afghanistan from  civil war and fighting on the side of a conservative religious cause against warlords, drug-dealers and bandits.  It does not say that these folks are terrorists, despite the fact that there were al Qaeda forces in the country.  You forget that the Taliban offered to send Osama to trial in what it called a" Neutral Country."  I am not and have never been particularly happy with the Taliban, or any rigid religious organization for that matter, but I don't confuse it with Al Qaeda, either.

Sincerely, Bob Kaven
Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


17 posted 03-10-2010 12:52 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Another internal struggle I have is choosing between which is more important: the concept of pure justice or the concept of home security first, even if it breaks a few egg shells. The libertarian in me says justice first, you idiot! The cautious side of me says: without security, there is no justice. I'm really torn on this, obiously.

The way a question is phrased, threadbear, often determines our answers for us. So, please, allow me to phrase this question for you:

Do we choose to do what we know is right or what we believe is expedient?

"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin, 1759
JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


18 posted 03-11-2010 05:01 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

A little more on the topic:
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/03/05/liz-cheneys-al-qaeda-seven/
threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


19 posted 03-12-2010 12:39 AM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

To answer's Bob's first post 2 days ago
(sorry, man: been laid up with bronchitis)
public education is something that should be provided all citizens
There is nothing in the Constitution that guarantees an education, Bob, simple as that.  Until then, I won't force education by government proxy down anyone's throat (like in California).  And I certainly don't think EVERYONE should go to college.  Not everyone has study habits or just the drive to study hard enough to keep up with the A & B students.  There's a reason why they have entrance tests to colleges.

As far as me calling them 'terrorists' as opposed to calling them something softer:   ain't gonna happen, Bob.  They're not criminals.  They're not soldiers.  They are terrorists, committing genocidal acts that far exceed anything we have current laws on the books for.
A law can only punish a person once.  The idealogy that caused them to commit acts of murder against civilians will not be changed
by locking up a single person.  If they were criminals: I would use the word: detainee or something similar.    I look at the semantics this way:  the Japanese rounded up in the USA post-Pearl Harbor were 'detainees.'    These guys in Guantanomo are much more than that.

This is the concept of Rendition.  EVERY nation I know of, does this: locks up potentially bad people offshore that could be potentially released thru a justice system.  You just don't hear anything about them, but they're there.  The US does prisoner swaps with countries all the time.  Its a form of InterPolitical justice that is, at best, unsavory.

Why is President Obama not compelled to release them any time soon?  Under the War Powers Act, each nation has the right to protect itself by keeping enemy combatants locked away, usually offshore, until the issue is resolved.  Usually the UN provides the rubber stamp on any agreement, and mediating the necessary prisoner exchanges.   The key word is 'declared war.'  Bush did that, and Congress agreed:  we are waging war on the Taliban and Al Q in Afghanistan.   But Bush didn't put it like that:  he called it 'waging a war on terrorism.'   Legally, that may not lay out WHO the enemy sufficiently enough to justify certain actions with prisoners.  The way this works in Iraq is this:  initially, it was a declared war against Saddam Hussein.  Legal enough, but when he was defeated, Al Qaeada stepped in and took over the battle.  The Americans have a right to defend themselves, and thus began a SECOND war in Iraq.  But Bush had already said in Afghanistan, that we were waging a war on 'Terrorism' and that covered the legality of Iraq prisoners.  While Congress didn't vote on a 'war' per se in Iraq, they did vote to provide funding for the war.  That still puzzles me to this day.

I've heard numerous lawyers talk about the 9 (not  7) lawyers that Obama appointed that had previously defended the detainees.  It took a Freedom of Information Act demand to get Obama to release their names.  The lawyers almost unanimously said: those lawyers all knew they were be ostracized in their own legal community, for taking on the defenses of the detainees.  My point of view is not that much of stretch.

Peace and love
Jeff


Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


20 posted 03-12-2010 12:44 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     I think to some extent, threadbear, that the question of whether it was wrong when Bush did it, whatever the "it" happened to be, may be a red herring, depending on the question.  It may, however, be perfectly justified, and I don't see you drawing a distinction here.  I would venture to say that this is a mistake, considering the likelihood of President Bush being correct 100% of the time is vanishingly small, as would be the reverse — yes?

     The question to ask, then, is whether Ms. Maddow is correct in her comments about these individual incidents.  If she is, then it doesn't particularly matter that the imputation feels or sounds unfair.  The truth can be voiced by anybody at any time.  Unlike Hollywood, truth usually doesn't require a bankable actor to voice it in order for the truth to be real and valid, though those who are not fond of any particular truth would often like you to think so.

     Ms. Maddow, it should be recognized, is not an unvarying fan of this administration, and she aims a percentage of her barbs at them as well as others, such as Ms. Cheyney.  And Ms. Cheyney has no shortage of critics, even within the ranks of former Bush administration officials.  This is because her criticism is aimed at the nature of the American (and anglo-saxon, for that matter) legal system, and the rights that it is based on.  She is being critical, essentially, of habeus corpus, which was one of the first rights wrenched by a group of English Barons out of the hands of the English Monarchy in  the 12th Century.  It took a long time after that for it to actually get firmly fixed on commoners, and there was a lot of struggle for it back and forth.

     Evidently Ms. Cheyney still doesn't regard that original fight with King John as a closed question, and she seems more than happy to give that right back to the state, despite the fact that the founding fathers thought that it was important enough to put into the bill of rights.  

     If anybody was being kept without recourse to law by Americans for any reason, I hope there would be some lawyer with the courage to speak up for him or for her, and that that lawyer would demand the same sorts of things that these lawyers did for their clients.  I don't care if the clients had horns and a tail and were breathing a constant stream of radioactive fire, if they were from the left or right, if they were cute as puppies, I simply don't care about the (alleged) wretchedness of the defendant.  And if you've got that defendant convicted in your head before you know squat about them based on something that hasn't been fed to you through some rumor mill, then  you really need to go back to square one and rethink your understanding of civics for Americans.  Innocent until proven guilty.

     Perhaps you're actually French, where they run things the other way around:  You're assumed to be guilty unless you can prove to the judge that you're innocent.

     You always did seem to have the suave, debonaire, je ne sais quoi l'essence judiciaire Français.   Chacun a son gout! Mon Vieux!  But in this case, give me the Constitution.
threadbear
Senior Member
since 07-10-2008
Posts 729
Indy


21 posted 03-12-2010 12:47 AM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

for Ron:
Do we choose to do what we know is right or what we believe is expedient?

'we' meaning, who?  Citizens? or Senators?
or are you talking abstractly about defending the tenets of the Constitution, et all?

Abstractly: i think the concept of justice should be defended first.  There has to be a framework to hang defensive strategies upon.  But you can't build justice around defense, unless you want fascism or something similar.  

The President, on the other hand, has the obligation to make a decision that is best for the moment FIRST, then historically SECOND depending upon the urgency of the decision in relation to defense, economically, or civil emergencies.
Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


22 posted 03-12-2010 06:09 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Dear T-bear,

         I hate bronchitis.  

     I don’t know anything in the Constitution that guarantees citizens an education, either.  I simply voiced an opinion in favor and gave some reasons.  They’re good reasons.  I have no idea what an education by government proxy might be and look forward to hearing you tell me about that.  A proxy is a substitute of sorts, so I’m completely unsure what possible definition could fit here.  Who would be the educated party if not the student?  It makes no sense.

     I certainly agree with you that everybody shouldn’t go to college.  Too many people confuse training and education as it is, and want college education to be “relevant.”  These are people who need training in business college or some sort of professional training school.  College is to help people learn how to think at an adult level, and most people have absolutely no wish, desire or ability to have or use those skills.  In fact, most people flee the entire prospect screaming, as well they should.  It has nothing to do with A and B students; it has to do with actually wanting to get to the bottom of things.

     Entrance tests for colleges are silly.  If you have the curiosity, then the tests will not necessarily show it.  They may show how well you understand the fund of knowledge that the major culture expects you to have; but not all suitably curious people come from that culture.  If you’re curious enough, you should pick up what you need after about a year and a half, and then you’ll be fine.


quote:

As far as me calling them 'terrorists' as opposed to calling them something softer:   ain't gonna happen, Bob.  They're not criminals.  They're not soldiers.  They are terrorists, committing genocidal acts that far exceed anything we have current laws on the books for.



     Ain’t gonna ask you to call ‘em something softer, T-Bear.

     Just gonna ask you to call ‘em something that you can prove.  You can’t call ‘em terrorists, can’t call ‘em soldiers, can’t call ‘em criminals, and you sure can’t call ‘em committin’ any darn Genocidal acts.

     I can call you a terrorist.   In fact, I may just do that, considering the way you’re willing to toss the rights of people out the window without any proof.  If George W. Bush had done that, as under the PATRIOT ACT he was allowed to do, he could toss you in Gitmo as well as a terrorist.  The current president has those powers as well, by the way, which is why there shouldn’t have been and should not now be a PATRIOT ACT in the first place.  That aside, whatever I call you does not make it so.

     You might be relieved.

      What gives you the right to determine the innocence or guilt of these people, Jeff?  The Supreme Court, which is not a very liberal Supreme Court at all, has said that these folks deserve a trial, you know, to determine guilty or not guilty, and what punishment is necessary if there is guilt.  Perhaps you are privy to information that The Supreme Court doesn’t have access to here that would make this whole trial business a terrible waste of time.  

     Myself, I could care less about what President Obama says about the guiltiness of this or that defendant.  You are overly impressed with the wisdom and knowledge of presidents, and I include Democratic presidents by the way, especially about the culpability of various defendants.  Neither Bush nor Obama knows; with some luck, a jury or a good legal proceeding may be able to tell.

quote:


A law can only punish a person once.  The ideology that caused them to commit acts of murder against civilians will not be changed
by locking up a single person.  If they were criminals: I would use the word: detainee or something similar.    I look at the semantics this way:  the Japanese rounded up in the USA post-Pearl Harbor were 'detainees.'    These guys in Guantanamo are much more than that.



     You lay claim to a level of knowledge, once again, which you cannot possibly have evidence to support.

     Your willingness to repeat the claims in more strident terms shows that you have not yet found the evidence to refute this previously made statement of mine.  I would suggest that your continued repetition of the same unproven assertions about these folks still does not actually amount to proof that your assertions are true.  It only shows that you have either given up the process of actually looking for proof; that you actually think that repetition of  the logical fallacy of begging the question somehow supplies the logical links that have been missing all along; or that you haven’t actually noticed that you are begging the question with these assertions.

quote:

This is the concept of Rendition.  EVERY nation I know of, does this: locks up potentially bad people offshore that could be potentially released thru a justice system.  You just don't hear anything about them, but they're there.  The US does prisoner swaps with countries all the time.  Its a form of InterPolitical justice that is, at best, unsavory.



     Well, Jeff, near as I can understand it, Rendition is different.  Rendition is shipping prisoners from our custody to the custody of other countries where even more uncivilized things than we are willing to do can be done to them for purposes which I do not understand.  We have used Syria and Egypt, for example, as places  to send prisoners by rendition for special questioning and imprisonment.  We have lawsuits and charges pending against us by the Italian Government at the present for just such activities.  We have kidnapped innocent folks in transit from Canada to Europe and sent them to (I believe) Syria for several years worth of torture.  The guy involved, by the way, was innocent.  Rendition, as I say, is something different.

     If every country you know of does this, then I guess that means that it must be alright.

     I remember hearing various parents respond to dreck like that coming from their teenaged kids, as I’m sure you must have.  “And if your friend Harvey (or Harriet) jumped off the empire State Building on a pogo Stick, I suppose you’d think that was alright, too?  Not having kids myself, I’ve never had cause to use the line; but you may have.  Tell me, does it make any more sense here?

quote:


Why is President Obama not compelled to release them any time soon?  Under the War Powers Act, each nation has the right to protect itself by keeping enemy combatants locked away, usually offshore, until the issue is resolved.  Usually the UN provides the rubber stamp on any agreement, and mediating the necessary prisoner exchanges.   The key word is 'declared war.'  Bush did that, and Congress agreed:  we are waging war on the Taliban and Al Q in Afghanistan.   But Bush didn't put it like that:  he called it 'waging a war on terrorism.'   Legally, that may not lay out WHO the enemy sufficiently enough to justify certain actions with prisoners.  The way this works in Iraq is this:  initially, it was a declared war against Saddam Hussein.  Legal enough, but when he was defeated, Al Qaeda stepped in and took over the battle.  The Americans have a right to defend themselves, and thus began a SECOND war in Iraq.  But Bush had already said in Afghanistan, that we were waging a war on 'Terrorism' and that covered the legality of Iraq prisoners.  While Congress didn't vote on a 'war' per se in Iraq, they did vote to provide funding for the war.  That still puzzles me to this day.



     As far as I understand things, if these guys had been in fact captured on the field of battle, this would not be an issue.  Most of these guys, as I understand it, came originally from Afghanistan, and their capture was not directly by U.S. forces but by folks that we had essentially hired to do fighting for us.  The folks were demi-allies, and were essentially warlords organized by contact with our special Forces guys.  Great strategy for fighting this sort of conflict, I think, but not one where you can actually say you have real allies.  These guys were in it for the money and for whatever advantage they could garner from the post-war situation.  I spoke about this in a prior post.

     The way our Gitmo captives came to us was also for money.  Some of the folks that came in as prisoners, then, may have been Al Qaeda guys, but probably not a lot of them; there weren’t a lot of them in country at any one time.  There were more Taliban folks.

     The Taliban guys were very conservative Muslims, but that didn’t mean that they were terrorists, Jeff.  We were allied with them for a number of years against the Soviets, which is how they got to know Osama bin Ladin.  The Taliban, while I have never liked a lot of their positions, you will remember, offered to turn Osama over to a neutral country for trial.  Whether that would have been possible or even remotely satisfactory, I don’t know.  We rejected the notion out of hand.  I think we should have waited a bit to see if it was real and if there was a decent compromise possible — the Hague, for example — but then I’m an optimist sometimes.

     It’s not at all clear that the people we ended up with in Gitmo were the terrorists that you believe them to be.  The guys that sold them to us would have happily sold us anybody who wasn’t kin for that $5000.00 per head though; it was a fortune to them.

quote:

I've heard numerous lawyers talk about the 9 (not  7) lawyers that Obama appointed that had previously defended the detainees.  It took a Freedom of Information Act demand to get Obama to release their names.  The lawyers almost unanimously said: those lawyers all knew they were be ostracized in their own legal community, for taking on the defenses of the detainees.  My point of view is not that much of stretch.



     And I know lawyers that would agree with them.  

     I also know lawyers that specialize in other sorts of law who would not agree at all.  I think you need to understand that there really are idealistic lawyers who still believe in idealistic sorts of things.  I don’t like all of them.  John Yoo, for example, one of the authors of the torture memo, seems like an idealist to me, simply not one that I find tolerable to listen to.  If he can excuse torture against Afghans, he can excuse it against you or me.  That’s a bit too trusting of government and authority for me.  

     You’d probably find a large number of JAG lawyers in those ranks, because a lot of JAG legal staff were very upset with the way that the Bush Justice Department dealt with the Gitmo folks.  I also know that a lot of conservative folks are unhappy with the ACLU — this puzzles me, because the ACLU will as happily defend conservative positions as they will Liberal positions; their loyalty is to the constitution and not to one or the other end of the political spectrum.  The ACLU is solidly against the way that the Gitmo folks have been treated as well.

     I like the Peace and Love closing you use, so right back at you, champ.

Peace and Love,

Bob Kaven

JenniferMaxwell
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Elite
since 09-14-2006
Posts 2275


23 posted 03-13-2010 01:12 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

If nothing less, simply detaining suspects is a far better option that what Glenn Beck suggested: http://thinkprogress.org/2008/06/25/beck-shoot-in-head/

and more recently: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CSj2a45MMI

Is it just me or does anyone else think perhaps Beck needs a mental health evaluation? I think he's very scary, incites violence, and reality has faded a bit off his radar screen.

Bob K
Member Elite
since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


24 posted 03-14-2010 03:23 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Well, yeah.

     But I was most struck by the sanity of the various early Republican responses to Ms. Cheyney's somewhat off the wall remarks about lawyers defending Gitmo detainees.  That's what got me to open up the thread in the first place, because there were people from the original Bush Justice department what actually said that Ms. Cheyney was wrong, and that she had the wrong idea about what the American system was all about.

     That's why I was talking about the sanity entering the discussion, Jenn; because I was so pleased to see that even among people that I'd come close to writing off, there were clear indications of interest in civil liberties and civil rights as the foundation of a democratic society.  That gave me a sense of hope and a sense of understanding that we aren't hopelessly split as the Becks and Limbaughs of the world would give me reason to believe.  

     Beck, who knows about Beck?

     I think he's missed the point that if he can decide that somebody deserves shooting simply on the basis of Beck's opinion and without and actuall legal process, that Beck himself has automatically pinned a target on his own back, as have we all.  The legal system isn't simply to protect those people that Beck thinks are hiding behind it.  Everybody has somebody who we think deserves the death penalty, if we're really pressed, whether we favor the death penalty or not.  And I'm against it myself, by the way.  Still, I've got my little private list, all the more a guilty pleasure because I know I'll never do anything about it.

     It's the actual legal process that protects us from this sort of stuff, and from blow-hards like Beck who think that voicing their opinions in the national media (while protected speech) is harmless and without effect on the populace in general.  It's not harmless.  I wouldn't silence him, but I would say that he rides very close to actual incitement to violence, and I believe he is often over the line.
 
 Post A Reply Post New Topic   Go to the Next Oldest/Previous Topic Return to Topic Page Go to the Next Newest Topic 
All times are ET (US) Top
  User Options
>> Discussion >> The Alley >> A Little Bit of Sanity Enters The Conver   [ Page: 1  2  3  ] Format for Better Printing EMail to a Friend Not Available
Print Send ECard

 

pipTalk Home Page | Main Poetry Forums

How to Join | Member's Area / Help | Private Library | Search | Contact Us | Today's Topics | Login
Discussion | Tech Talk | Archives | Sanctuary



© Passions in Poetry and netpoets.com 1998-2013
All Poetry and Prose is copyrighted by the individual authors