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Such other matters as the President considers appropriate. - Input Junkie
March 18th, 2010
08:49 pm

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Such other matters as the President considers appropriate.
McCain and Leiberman have proposed a bill which allows for indefinite detention of American citizens at the president's whim.

Niemöller [1] is not mocked.

The whole point of "enemy combatant" was to put people outside the law, so that the government could do whatever it pleased to them. The law isn't an absolutely reliable protection, but it's a good bit better than nothing.

It was obvious to me that there was no reason for American government lawlessness to be limited to people who aren't American citizens.

I don't take the abuse of non-Americans lightly. A good bit of the anger in this post is for the Americans who thought indefinite detention without charge could only happen to someone else.

SEC. 5. DETENTION WITHOUT TRIAL OF UNPRIVILEGED ENEMY BELLIGERENTS.

An individual, including a citizen of the United States, determined to be an unprivileged enemy belligerent under section 3(c)(2) in a manner which satisfies Article 5 of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War may be detained without criminal charges and without trial for the duration of hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners in which the individual has engaged, or which the individual has purposely and materially supported, consistent with the law of war and any authorization for the use of military force provided by Congress pertaining to such hostilities.


Information about the bill from Glenn Greenwald, from an article at The Huffington Post which I found out about it because Steve Barnes was interested in the people from the French Television show who weren't willing to give big electric shocks.

I'm feeling let down by my friendslist. What happened to the glory days when every frightening thing the government was doing was urgent news? Teapartyers behaving like assholes is not a substitute.

Perhaps I'm being unfair-- I don't follow facebook or twitter, and lj's been kind of quiet lately. Has anyone else heard about this monstrous bill?

Anyway, here are the sponsors of the bill:
Sen. John McCain [R-AZ]

Scott Brown [R-MA]

Saxby Chambliss [R-GA]

James Inhofe [R-OK]

George LeMieux [R-FL]

Joseph Lieberman [I-CT]

Jefferson Sessions [R-AL]

John Thune [R-SD]

David Vitter [R-LA]

Roger Wicker [R-MS]

More, more, more. Did Obama really authorize INTERPOL to operate independently in the US, without regard for the bill of rights.


[1] First they came for the..... and when they finally came for me, there was no one to speak up.

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From:redneckgaijin
Date:March 19th, 2010 02:57 am (UTC)
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Yes to all of the above, but particularly this is an effort to keep everyone currently in Guantanamo there forever- guilty or innocent.
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From:heron61
Date:March 19th, 2010 01:39 am (UTC)
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I'm not certain what there is to worry about with this bill. Certainly it's horrific, but it's also being supported by Lieberman, whose burned through a lot of his political capital, and by a bunch of far-right Republicans. One of them (James Inhofe) voted for the recent jobs bill, but the rest have pretty much voted against everything supported by the Democrats, and so this bill has zero chance of passing. It looks to me merely like one of those horrific bits of pointlessly evil grandstanding that the far right loves so much.

I agree that they should be widely denounced, but given that most of the people who vote for these monsters actually like this sort of vileness, I'm not certain how useful or important denouncing this sort of grandstanding actually is.
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From:deor
Date:March 19th, 2010 01:43 am (UTC)
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Holy *censored*. What happened to the America I thought I knew?
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From:nancylebov
Date:March 19th, 2010 01:51 am (UTC)
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I don't know how much attention you've been paying, but torture was legal for rather a while, and even though Obama says he's stopped it, none of the people who permitted or (falsely) legalized torture are going to be prosecuted. Unless something else changes. Obama was probably the most idealistic candidate who could have been elected.

America was never as good as it said on the label, but it's been going downhill.

I begin to suspect that courage hasn't been sufficiently valued, and that's got something to do with the panicky response to 9/11.
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From:redneckgaijin
Date:March 19th, 2010 02:52 am (UTC)
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Technically, torture is still legal in the United States- or, at least, the President has the power to either define it away or prevent any and all domestic prosecutions of officials who torture. That was all in the Military Commissions Act of 2006.

The only thing- the ABSOLUTELY only thing- Obama has done to reverse the Bush-Cheney torture regime is to issue a single executive order... which can, and certainly will, be reversed immediately by the next Republican President.
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From:nancylebov
Date:March 19th, 2010 01:55 am (UTC)
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From section 2: (b) International organizations, their property and their assets, wherever located, and by whomsoever held, shall enjoy the same immunity from suit and every form of judicial process as is enjoyed by foreign governments, except to the extent that such organizations may expressly waive their immunity for the purpose of any proceedings or by the terms of any contract.

I don't know whether this means they're immune from prosecution for what would ordinarily be called crimes.

Edited at 2010-03-19 01:56 am (UTC)
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From:ckd
Date:March 19th, 2010 02:11 am (UTC)
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Pass it, sign it, and then use it to arrest all of the sponsors as traitors to the Constitution...at the signing ceremony.
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From:nancylebov
Date:March 19th, 2010 02:18 am (UTC)
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Who's doing the arresting?
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From:ckd
Date:March 19th, 2010 02:20 am (UTC)
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From:whswhs
Date:March 19th, 2010 04:53 am (UTC)
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I find it disturbing to see you using the epithet "teabagger," which is characteristically used by people who (a) wish to heap scorn on the Tea Party movement (b) without actually arguing against the positions of its adherents. I haven't myself attended such an event, and don't expect to. But I do follow Web sites of some people who have, and the major themes they remark on seem to be fiscal responsibility, limited government, and stricter adherence to the Constitution . . . all of which strike me as desirable. After the past decade of the "right wing" being increasingly theocratic/social conservative, I find it a great improvement to find people on the right talking about the classic Republican issues and deliberately turning their focus away from recent obsessions with abortion and same-sex marriage.

Yes, there are reports of obnoxious behavior on the part of some Tea Partiers. There are reports of obnoxious behavior on the part of nearly every large-scale political movement. But arguing against ideas by pointing to the character flaws of people who assert them is a fallacy, and using abusive language to refer to those people is falling victim to the same obsessive political hostility you decry in them. I'm disappointed to see you doing this; your past posts have made a better impression on me.
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From:agrumer
Date:March 19th, 2010 06:57 am (UTC)
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The theocrats and social conservatives have always (well, for longer than I've been alive, anyway) appealed to fiscal responsibility, limited government, and the Constitution while pushing their theocratic or socially conservative policies. I don't see anything in the Tea party movement to convince me that they're different.
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From:whswhs
Date:March 19th, 2010 07:43 am (UTC)
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For the past decade, we've heard increasingly little about that. Bush was blatantly a big government conservative, responsible for Medicare D and No Child Left Behind as well as the abuses of civil liberties following the creation of the Department of Homeland Security; neither McCain nor Huckabee had much sympathy for "small government" policies; and the big selling points of the Republican Party have been opposition to abortion and to same-sex marriage. Now, in contrast, we see the Tea Party people not simply saying that they want fiscal conservatism, but making a point of not wanting to campaign on "values voter" issues limit their appeal to that group. That strikes me as an improvement. Of course, I'm part of the "socially liberal and fiscally conservative" faction, and find the theocrats and the progressives equally repulsive.

But even if you flatly disagree with their ideas, calling them by abusive names is not legitimate debate. Take what they say and show what's wrong with it. Namecalling is the tactic of a playground bully, not of a citizen of a free society.
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