Sunday, May 24, 2009


Yeah, right. Even some among his pet media don't buy it anymore!

I saw bits of the same speech and I was not impressed. Especially in light of the biography I'm reading; rocket engineering aside, von Braun was pretty typical of many well-off Germans: patriotic, concerned about his country, carried along by the waves of his time, unwilling to look too closely at what his government was up to and ultimately in over his head. Can't happen here? Ha.

I was never very happy about the "detainees" at Guantanamo: if they're bad dudes, shoot 'em and have done with it; if you're not sure, find out. (The West has an interesting tradition about playing "better safe than sorry" with people)[1]. But at least it was understood to be an unusual situation, limited in scope and only barely justified. Now, the present rat under the floorboards of the White House[2] proposes comin' up with some airtight, Constitutional (!) legal justification for "indefinite detention." Habeus corpus? Who he? And wanna bet it won't eventually be used on citizens?

Just remember, the first to the camps are the folks nobody likes. Eventually? Eventually nobody's allowed to like members of any group selected for the camps and we're all complicit.

Is this the "change" or the "hope" the voting public expected?
1. And don't miss Professor Volokh's related discourse.

2. To borrow a phrase that got a CBS reporter canned when he used it to refer to Richard Nixon. Me, I think it'd be good to use a few times a year to remind whoever is Prez that we don't vote 'em to be our Gods or King and winning the election doesn't make 'em any more special than the guy who won't shut up at the cinema.


Anonymous said...

In a perfect world he would have given that speech in front of the Constitution, and then promptly burst into flames; as it is I do hope the elections coming tell a different story of what the Constitution means (and doesn't.)


perlhaqr said...

Your "Blackstone" link goes to a disambiguation page.

WV: "color" Yes. It's a BLACK stone. I get it. Ha!

Roberta X said...

I think I have the bad link fixed.

og said...

The blackstone formula is wonderful to everyone but the victims of the one guilty person. To them, it is a gross miscarriage of justice.

Having spent the better part of my life watching some of the most horrible miscreants you can imagine get off scot free, my feeling is somewhat different.

An accountant said...

I think the problem here is that everyone involved is afraid to stick their necks out. If they are bad men, then sure, murder them. Those people who hold this view I respect a great deal, and frankly I don't know if I disagree. Most are not brave enough to go out there with that viewpoint. The converse is that if they are not, then let them go. The liability of letting a man go free who could do wrong in the future makes cowards of an equally large number. My real problem with the status quo is that we are at war with a common noun. I think thats stupid. Wars with proper nouns end. Are we still at war with poverty? Hows that war on drugs going?