Posted by: quiscus | September 30, 2010

September 30, 2010

1.  “Beware of Governments Trumpeting Terror Threats

In any event, al Qaeda doesn’t generally issue warnings.”

2.  “Wars could cost $4 trillion to $6 trillion

“This may be more of a crisis than the Medicare and Social Security problems we have looming,” said House Veterans Affairs Chairman Bob Filner, D-Calif. “It rivals both in the potential impact. This is another entitlement we’ve committed ourselves to, and it could break the bank.”

3.  “Activists Say Raids Could Boost Anti-War Movement

Code Pink’s Medea Benjamin, meanwhile, says the terrible irony is that while the FBI raids peace activists, “the real terrorists are walking freely right here in Washington, DC, and around this country — the ones that took us into these disastrous wars. And it’s absolutely outrageous that those of us who believe that we shouldn’t be bombing other people around the world and we shouldn’t be supporting dictatorial regimes are the ones whose homes are raided.”

4.  Notice he doesn’t say the US committed war crimes, that he ordered, for all of its actions:

“Kissinger: Vietnam failures our own fault”

5.  “Summers Skews the Playing Field for the Big Boys, then Blames Skyrocketing Inequality on a “Ruthless Economy”

But increasing income disparity hasn’t just happened like some unforeseen natural disaster which is difficult to forecast, such as an earthquake. It has been the result of certain efforts by the wealthy and their lackeys in government.

As Warren Buffet said in 2006:

There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”

6.  “America’s China Bashing: A Compendium of Junk Economics”

7.  “Questions for Andrew Sullivan

But given that they have invoked this, and have thus shrouded their case against Awlaki in total secrecy, why is Andrew willing to assert that Awlaki is a terrorist, and not only assert it, but do so with such conviction that he’s comfortable with the death penalty being imposed based on nothing more than unchecked Presidential decree?

But I do believe we are at war; and that killing those who wish to kill us before they can do so is not the equivalent of “assassination”.

Are we “at war” on the entire planet — the centerpiece of the Bush/Cheney assertion of radical powers — or are there physical limits to where the President’s war powers apply, i.e., where the “battlefield” is?  If we’re “at war” anywhere and everywhere Terrorists are found, does that apply to U.S. soil?  Can Obama also order American citizens killed without due process on U.S. soil if he accuses them of being members of Al Qaeda?  What possible coherent limits could one assert to deny that power?  And is merely harboring a “wish” to “kill us” sufficient to make someone a Terrorist, or do they actually have to take affirmative steps to harm Americans?

My concern has always been with the power to detain without due process and torture, not the regrettable necessity of killing the enemy in a hot and dangerous war.

This is the claim I have long found most confounding.  In what conceivable moral or legal universe is it intolerable merely to detain someone without due process — something Bush did to great controversy and outrage — but acceptable to kill them without due process?  Given that wrongful due-process-free detention can be corrected, whereas wrongful due-process-free killing cannot be, isn’t the former far more acceptable than the latter?  Also recall that Bush’s mere eavesdropping on Americans without due process or oversight caused a major national scandal; it’s true that Bush’s eavesdropping was illegal, but it was also claimed to be so dangerous because it lacked any oversight:  how can Obama’s killing of American citizens without due process or oversight possibly be more tolerable than Bush’s mere eavesdropping?

Also, the language Andrew uses — “a hot and dangerous war” — implies that the person being targeted is involved in some sort of active hostilities at the time we kill him.  But that’s not the case.  The kill order permits them to be targeted no matter what they are doing at the moment the drone lands on their head:  sleeping, playing with their children, riding in a car with their parents, anything else far away from a battlefield.  Besides torture, if the President has the authority to order American citizens killed without a shred of due process under those circumstances, what doesn’t he have the power to do provided he simply accuses them of being an Al Qaeda Terrorist?  I spent years asking that question during the Bush/Cheney era without getting an answer — Al Gore asked the same question in 2006:  “under the theory by which these acts are committed, are there any acts that can on their face be prohibited?” — and sadly, the question is every bit as relevant now.”

8.  “Robert Gates: ‘We’re Not Ever Leaving’ Afghanistan


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