Former CIA Bin Laden Hunter Says A Neglectful Congress & Executive Should Be TIME’s Persons of the Year

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michael scheuer.jpg
In response to my note that “The Guantanamo Detainee” be named TIME‘s person of the year because of the legal and political convulsions and hemorrhaging that will be caused for years ahead by institutionalized extralegalism there, Michael Scheuer sent me a thoughtful note of his own on the subject that needs to be read.
Scheuer, as most know, was head of the CIA’s now terminated “bin Laden unit” and authored Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror, Through our Enemies’ Eyes: Osama bin Laden, Radical Islam, and the Future of America, and the forthcoming Marching Towards Hell: America and Islam After Iraq.

From Michael Scheuer to Steven Clemons, 15 December 2007
Steve,
With respect, I would have to say that a Congress and Executive that refuse to execute the laws (borders and immigration); a Congress that has abdicated its exclusive constitutional authority to declare war and so allows wars to be initiated on one man’s whim; and the negligence of Congress and the Bush and Clinton administrations to secure all the weapons in the Former Soviet Union’s Nuclear arsenal — one of which used in the United States would damage our civil-liberties environment for decades — are far better candidates than the Guantanamo detainee group for “Person of the Year.”
The failure to set these issues right will have far more impact on America’s future than the detainees. The less said about Gore and Rowling the better.
The real problem with Guantanamo is that the prisoners there should have been treated as prsioners of war from the first.
Put them in World War-II-syle stockades, let them write home, and facilitate access for the Red Cross.
The most troubling issue regarding Guantanamo, CIA installations, DoD prisons, or the idea I just presented is that the men held in each for the most part can never be let go.
For me, this is the crux of the issue and it has not been addressed. For the first time in Western history we are capturing POWs who cannot be released; we already have had dozens go back to battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan after being released.
This problem is going to take folks with far better brains then mine to remedy, and so far the issue has not even be joined.
— Mike Scheuer

Michael Scheuer hits the nail on the head. We’ve created a legal purgatory from which there is no easy exit. The first thing that is crucial is not to add to the scale of this problem and add any new detainees to Guantanamo.
But this kind of blunt, sensible clarity from a key player engaged in hunting and killing bin Laden’s team is what many should be considering.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

34 comments on “Former CIA Bin Laden Hunter Says A Neglectful Congress & Executive Should Be TIME’s Persons of the Year

  1. samuel burke says:

    solve the palestinian problem and get the nation of israel to start to behave like a neighbor and the middle east will take care of itself…there would not be a worry about detainees returning to fight in any war.

    Reply

  2. samuel burke says:

    solve the palestinian problem and get the nation of israel to start to behave like a neighbor and the middle east will take care of itself…there would not be a worry about detainees returning to fight in any war.

    Reply

  3. Kathleen says:

    Carroll… thanks for the link… will check it out.

    Reply

  4. easy e says:

    Robert Hume @10:00pm
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    just imagine if that rich “mexican” were of mestizo/indigenous indian stock, as 97% of “real mexicans”. btw, you sound like a true colonialist.

    Reply

  5. Robert Hume says:

    Reggie,
    “Racist, anti-immigrant bile”. Some of those “immigrants” are likely to set off an a-bomb, even if 99.999% of them are just “hard-working” family members. That’s number 1.
    Number 2 is that “hard-working family members” lower the income and quality of life of US citizens. There is no reason to help out foreigners, especially since we have no reason to pick a particular 10 million and neglect the remaining 3 billion who are poorer than Mexicans. BTW, did you know that the next Forbes will have a Mexican as the world’s richest man?

    Reply

  6. Kathleen says:

    Alora, continuamo…
    Italians Block Construction of U.S. Base
    By David Swanson
    The people of the northern Italian city of Vicenza, with help from activists around Italy, the rest of Europe, and even in the United States, are continuing to block the proposed construction of a new U.S. military base on their soil. When a company laid underground fiber-optic cables at the site of the proposed base, activists fill a junction box with cement. When another company tried to begin the work of removing World War II era U.S. bombs from the site, activists camped out in the cold for three days and nights while allies in Florence and a small town near Naples conducted simultaneous protests in front of the company’s offices. The company backed off and has suspended the work. And a small town outside Vicenza has now refused to allow the United States to construct a residential village for troops.
    Recently, Italy’s foreign minister assured Condoleezza Rice, and Italy’s president assured George W. Bush – not for the first time – that the base will be built. And the U.S. Congress, unbeknownst to the American people, has approved the funding. But there is a reason for these repeated public assertions that everything is on track. It isn’t.
    Saturday, December 15th, 2007, was predicted to be the coldest day Vicenza had seen. It snowed lightly in the morning. And even without the weather factor, organizers had hopes of only about 20,000 people turning out for a long march through the city and yet another rally against the construction of a base at a location called Dal Molin. But as the march proceeded for hours through the streets of Vicenza, the sun melted the snow, and word came that the back end of the march had not yet left the starting place, it became clear that, without any advertising, and with negative or nonexistent media coverage, over 80,000 people had turned out in this conservative city with no university and no protest tradition. And there was no counter-protest whatsoever.
    At the end of the march, the crowd poured into a piazza to hear speeches from playwright Dario Fo, Catholic priest Don Gallo, event organizer Cinzia Bottene, American Code Pink activist Desiree Fairooz (famous around the globe for holding blood-colored hands up to Condoleezza Rice) and others. Desiree was wonderful despite being moved to tears by the thought of whose fault it was that Italians and others around the world must hold these protests.
    When it was my turn to speak, I described the situation in the United States, expressed solidarity with the Vicentini, and encouraged the American soldiers already stationed in and near Vicenza to refuse illegal orders to go to Iraq. I also noted that some clown named Edward Luttwak does not speak for the American people, despite appearing as an American military expert (and cheerleader) in every Italian television news story about the U.S. military.
    Naturally, I also mentioned the movement for impeachment, and it was nice to hear a crowd of Italians join in with a chant of “Impeach! Impeach! Impeach!” Someone later told me “You know, there are a lot more than 80,000 people who want Bush impeached.” At a conference the next day in the “Presidio Permanente” (a major activist camp on property adjoining the base site) I asked the audience if they knew that the continuation of funding for the occupation of Iraq and the failure to begin impeachment were the work of a woman of Italian descent. Several people shouted “Nancy Pelosi!” I asked everyone to send her Emails.
    Twenty years ago in Vicenza, if you said you were American it was a bit like saying you were a rock star. Now it’s like saying you’re Dick Cheney. “Yankee Go Home” and “Americani A Casa” are popular chants and graffiti, although usually said only in reference to Americans in the military. The Vicentini call us their brothers, but don’t want us occupying their city. They sometimes shout “Fratelli Americani… A Casa.” In fact Italian peace activists, just like American peace activists, are accused of being anti-American, and they reply that they want to be friends with Americans, but not slaves to Americans.
    They have a point. Before anyone in Italy was asked, the U.S. military, and congressional committee staff, had laid out the plans for a major new base in the middle of a residential area on the edge of an historic city full of renaissance architecture. Agreeing to build the new base in a “palladian style” has appeased no one.
    Instead, citizens maintain a 24-7 presence on the edge of the site in their “permanent” fort, consisting of large white tents and trailers. The tents have heat, electricity, light, a sound system, a kitchen, and a store selling every possible article with the anti-base label “No Dal Molin.” A trailer has a radio station. There are not, however, places for large numbers of activists from out of town to sleep. So, in addition to hosting guests in homes, the No Dal Molin movement, in preparation for Saturday’s march seized an abandoned Italian military barracks. Activists then contacted the police offering to pay the utility bills for three days and give the place a major cleaning. The police left them alone. Even during the march, the police stayed out of sight, having apparently decided that a visible police presence boosts the movement. When European activists – used to the freedoms of speech and assembly – hear about Americans being arrested for nonviolent civil disobedience, they sometimes assume we must have committed actual, you know, crimes.
    But there are also civil disobedience actions in Europe that can lead to arrest. Some of them involve blocking the construction of bases or rail lines, or blocking the passage along rail lines of trains carrying military materials.
    For three days, including the Saturday of the march, anti-bases activists from around the continent gathered in Vicenza to share their experiences and plan future joint efforts. There are anti-bases gatherings planned for Germany, Belgium, and the United States in the spring.
    The invasion and occupation of Iraq might have been possible without the U.S. bases that dot the face of Europe, but it would have been and would continue to be a very different operation, since so many soldiers are sent to Iraq from these bases and then return to them. These bases were also used to move prisoners to Guantanamo four years ago. And, as in 80 percent of the nations on earth, the presence of U.S. military bases forms a large part of Europeans’ perceptions of the United States. Meanwhile, many citizens of the United States have only the vaguest notion of the approximately 1,000 bases and 300,000 soldiers they pay taxes to maintain in other people’s countries.
    How many Americans have heard this story? Citizens of the Czech Republic learned that a base was being planned in their area. The absurd U.S. line is that this base is needed to protect against attacks from North Korea and Iran. But, in a public vote, 99 percent of residents of the area opposed the construction of a base. A group of town mayors in the area formed an alliance to speak out against the base. It has not been built.
    Since the U.S. military is constantly building new bases, when and if it decides to use a location other than one that is being protested, that victory may not be immediately apparent, the way it was in Vieques. And the organizers of the Vicenza protest will not consider that a complete victory. When I asked Cinzia what she would do if they chose to build the base in Romania, she replied “We’ll go train the Romanians.” But as long as the struggle against the base continues in Vicenza, victories will continue to pile up in the form of a growing Italian and European peace movement, and possibly in changes in Italy’s government.
    In America we sometimes like to imagine that a third political party would solve our problems, but Italy has some 15 significant political parties, and essentially the same problems we do. They’re told that if they don’t settle for the current government they’ll end up with a worse one. They’re told that if they aren’t happy with Prodi they can have Berlusconi back. They’re told that if they can’t be happy with a government that says it is for peace and progress while doing the exact same things the previous government did, well then they can have the previous government back again, or something even worse. And so, as change becomes possible, the activism that could force it is drained away by partisanship and the sensation of being in power for power’s sake. Italy even has a new party that goes by the name Partito Democratico.
    While our Democratic Party pretends it has to pass a bill in order to end the funding of an occupation that can be ended by refusing to pass any bills, Italy’s leftists propose a doomed vote for a moratorium on bases rather than adding the measure to a larger bill and risking the collapse of the current coalitions. And the media, much of it owned by Berlusconi or controlled by Prodi’s government, and most of the rest owned by other business interests, is on the side of U.S. empire. Italy’s constitution prevents it from going to war, so the occupation of Iraq, and that of Afghanistan which Italy still supports, are called humanitarian missions. The most prominent coverage of Saturday’s march was of graffiti that one or more people had written on a wall near a new theater, even though No Dal Molin activists had cleaned it off by the next afternoon.
    But the Italian people are not fooled or silenced. They have some newspapers on their side. They have internet organizing. They have an active and aggressive labor movement. And their peace movement, unlike ours, does not directly confront their country’s nationalism. In fact, there are right-wing nationalists who oppose the construction of U.S. bases. But, above all, there are many who oppose nationalism and militarism, proudly call themselves leftists, and have dedicated themselves to doing what is needed to achieve peace in the world.
    A lot more information on the anti-base struggle in Vicenza can be found at http://afterdowningstreet.org/vicenza
    A video that Howard Zinn recorded as a message to the people of Vicenza for the events of this past weekend is at
    http://492cafe.org/video/zincenza/2007_12_07-Zinn-v01-CD.mov
    A video of Cinzia confronting the prime minister of Italy last June is on the indispensable site of Stephanie Westbrook’s group in Rome, US Citizens for Peace and Justice:
    http://www.peaceandjustice.it/vicenza
    Websites central to the anti-base movement in Vicenza are:
    http://www.altravicenza.it
    http://www.nodalmolin.it
    Anti-base events are planned for
    March 2008 in Belgium:
    http://www.bombspotting.be
    April 11-13 in Omaha, Nebraska:
    http://www.space4peace.org
    April and August in Germany:
    http://www.gaaa.org
    The anti-base movement will also be prominent at the European Social Forum in Sweden in the fall.
    ONE THING YOU CAN DO:
    One of the biggest local backers and profiteers of the proposed base at Dal Molin also profits when anyone buys a bottle of wine with the name Zonin on it. Don’t buy any! You can find a list of brands not to buy at http://www.nodalmolin.it

    Reply

  7. Carroll says:

    Posted by Kathleen at December 17, 2007 11:13 AM
    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m2242/is_1681_288/ai_n16702006
    I think this is the right book…like I said it was at least a year ago and I got it from my library and don’t have it here to double check so I am not sure about the title …but I remember it was by Bosworth so it is either this one or a prior one he wrote.

    Reply

  8. Kathleen says:

    Carroll… I think I’ll read that book… thanks for the title. It’s that very spirit of defiance that gave birth to “THE” Mafia. Sicilians simply would not be told what to do by any Pope or King of France back in 1283….period.
    Impeachment off the table is THE reason this Congress can’t get anything past Busholini’s little veto pen. Duuuuuh.
    All he cares about is his “legacy”,(you should pardon the expression), so Dems need to threaten a huge black splotch on it, at a minimum.

    Reply

  9. p.lukasiak says:

    I think its ridiculous to blame “Congress” as a whole at this point — while Congressional Republicans ignored their oversight responsibilities for six years, and are now blocking efforts to hold the Bush regime accountable, the vast majority of Congressional Democrats are willing to do the right thing.
    If Scheur was serious, he’d be citing Bush and the Congressional Republicans, not Bush and Congress.

    Reply

  10. Carroll says:

    Posted by Kathleen at December 16, 2007 03:53 PM
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    heheh.
    I read “Mussolini’s Italy” (I think that was the title, it was a few years ago so I might have it backwards). It was about how Italian society behaved during Mussolini and the nazis….and showed how “ungovernable” the Italians were…how the upper class Italians basically regarded Mussolini as a joke and wouldn’t fall in line with the Italy-Germany allience…and described most of Italy’s resistance as coming from the fact that the average Italians in their villages and towns outside of Rome had “independent attitudes” to begin with and went by their own “local” government. The nazis considered Italy such a problem in this regard that they were constantly sending their people to see Mussolini because their edicts wern’t being followed. There were some funny passages describing how when Mussolini would enact a new rule the leading social figures would go to see him and say..”well, we don’t like this and we aren’t going to do it”.

    Reply

  11. Sandy says:

    Already lost…..awhile ago.

    Reply

  12. Nancy says:

    As 2007 limps toward the finish line, it will go down in history as the year in which the President, the Vice-President, the Congress and the Republican and Democratic parties became the targets of the anger, rage, fury and hatred of millions of Americans.
    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi showed her true loyalties when she too impeachment “off the table”, because she didn’t want to jeopardize the flow of blood money which flowed into her political campaign warchest from Felix Rohatyn and his Anglo-Dutch financier/corporate buddies who’ve profited handsomely from the illegal war in Traq, and who also stand to profit from an impending war against Iran, while AIPAC, along with the “Christian Right” networks, continues to promote the “Armageddon Agenda” by mobilizing so-called “Patriot Pastors” who call for the obliteration of Iran, Iraq and other “hostile” Arab nations in order to hasten the arrival of Jesus Christ to Earth.
    She and the Congress stood by while Valerie Plame-Wilson was outed as a CIA operative and did nothing. They stood idly by as former AG Alberto “Gonzo” Gonzales institutionalized torture as “common practice” in the “Global War On Terror”, and they gave their approval to Michael Mukasey, another Attorney General who sees nothing wrong with waterboarding as a form of torture.
    Nancy Pelosi is guilty of aiding and abetting a criminal enterprise, dereliction of duty, violating her sworn oath to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States”, and for the high crime of treason against the United States. Her actions are not a case of mere “mismanagement” — she has committed treason, and she must be impeached, along with Cheney and Bush.
    If Cheney, Bush and Speaker Pelosi are not impeached, this nation will not only have lost all of its remaining moral authority and credibility, but it will have lost the moral fitness to survive and lead the world to solutions to the many crises we now face

    Reply

  13. Frank says:

    “Pelosi took impeachment off the table because this Congress had no chance of impeaching and convicting aWol. There is no black eye for a Congress quite like a failed impeachment, no?”
    NOT NO BUT HELL NO!!!!

    Reply

  14. sdemetri says:

    Detainees are in a sort of legal limbo, but is that what Scheuer is saying is the reason that have to be held indefinitely? Seems to me his comment of dozens returning to the fight is his reason. I don’t get a legal sense from what he says here.

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  15. Hedley Lamarr says:

    Pelosi took impeachment off the table because this Congress had no chance of impeaching and convicting aWol. There is no black eye for a Congress quite like a failed impeachment, no?
    I think they all have decided to wait for 2009 when with a Democratic president they will be able to accomplish more for the country. Of course by then there will be more elephant poop to clean up.

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  16. Kathleen says:

    The Three B’s…Berlesconi, Blair and Busholini… two down, one to go.

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  17. Kathleen says:

    OT, but…
    Carroll, questo e per lei…
    AfterDowningStreet.org web site.
    L’Italia Per L’Impeachment di Bush e Cheney
    By David Swanson
    Today I asked 80,000 people in a square in Vicenza, Italy, if they wanted impeachment, and they said: “Impeach, Impeach, Impeach, Impeach!”
    This is part of a larger story. Full report by Monday.
    Any Italian worth his or her salt is a congenital anarchist. Even Mussolini said that Italians are ungovernable. Thank heaven. Somebody has to be.
    As you know, I frequently call Dopey, “Busholini”.
    It’s Italian-American for “Shrub”.
    Just a little hyphented humor.

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  18. ... says:

    poa – always enjoy reading your posts. continue.
    guantanamo is a blight on usa’s soul.. i agree, it needs to be addressed.. the road to hell is apparently paved with good intentions.

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  19. Kathleen says:

    I think Scheuer made the case that OBL was a CIA asset in Imperial Hubris.
    I disagree with him on this. It is preciserly that the Detainees can never be free that they need the most attention to their plight.

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  20. Carroll says:

    It would be appropiate to see congress on the cover of time.
    Perhaps a picture of some of the most seditious of them….all holding aloft their own personal symbol flags….a flag with corporate banking seals, a flag with the Enron symbol on it, a Wall Street banner flag, a flag for Haliburton, a flag for Torture, a flag for Curveball, a flag for the insurance companies, a flag for the drug companies, a flag for the illegals, the Israeli congressmen with a Star of David flag, a flag for cluster bombs, an overthrow Castro flag, a bomb Iran flag, a wur on terriers flag, a AIPAC flag, a Church flag, a bomb Lebanon flag, …everything but an America flag.
    All sitting under a huge American Flag with a Gaint Question Mark on it.
    They wouldn’t even have to write the article for the cover, we all know it aleady.

    Reply

  21. POedToo says:

    Today is Ron Paul’s Boston Tea Party donation day. If you want to send a clear message to the “two” parties, which between them have subverted our Bill of Rights and launched endless war, send Doctor Paul a donation today!
    Even a small donation to Dr. Paul will send a message to the Dems and the Republicans that Americans are waking-up to the destruction of our country, and the world by extension, AND THAT WE WANT OUR COUNTRY BACK.
    Even if Paul were elected he would have to deal with the thugs on either side of the aisle, so no fears about a libertarian take-over — Paul would just have the power to speak for the people of the U.S. (and not Israel) and reign the Dimbocraps and Repulsathugs in, while restoring the systems of checks and balances to OUR, we the people of the United States’, Constitution.

    Reply

  22. Frank says:

    Pelosi should be considered for the Time cover. Her “impeachment is off the table” words gave and is giving free reign to the most deserving president for impeachment this country ever had.
    Each day brings more and more reason for impeachment proceedings to be held. She swore to uphold the constitution, but like Bush, she acts like it is “just another god damned piece of paper”.

    Reply

  23. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I watched a Scheuer interview on C-Span a while back, and recall actually being repulsed by the man, and upset by his obvious rabid willingness to sell the lies of this Administration. This letter to Steve is the action of just another rat trying to clean up his place in history.
    If there is any positive conclusion to be drawn by the slime that is oozing out of the pores of this Administration, it is that these people apparently believe that the Bush Administration will eventually be exposed for the criminal and satanical abomination it truly is, and they are trying to wipe themselves clean before that event occurs. I hope they’re right, and that the truth, and justice, will prevail. But it is wishful thinking on their part to suppose the stain will wash off, and that they can ever be clean again.
    I say from the depths of my soul;
    May they fry in hell, for an eternity.

    Reply

  24. jonst says:

    Agree a 100% with Dan K. “the less said about Gore…”. Yeah, ok Mike. All this guy wants is the West to “secure ALL[emphasis added]the weapons in the Former Soviet Union’s Nuclear arsenal”. A digression on my part but that was a rather selective use of capitalization….wonder what his point was? Yeah, that’s all, “all” the weapons. Securing them would really assure us that not one, one, of them could, or would, ever be purchase. By people with access to oil and drug money? And then there is his “dozens” comment. As in “dozens have gone back to the battlefield? “Dozens”? And for this we should set up WWII style POW camps? This is an example of the mentality that got us in the mess we are in. Most leaders, Dem and Rep, chose, and choose, to see this a WWII/Cold War scale event. Kerry, rightly, saw it was more of police/intelligence matter. For that he was promptly ridiculed, and he, as dems inevitably do, ran from the idea. It will be interesting to see who was correct in the long run.
    The trick is, of course, that the miniaturization of weapons makes even a small group of criminals, potentially, as dangerous as a large and well armed modern nation state. But lets see how far preemptively invading Muslim nations, threatening to invade others, backing occupation of their lands by other nations, torturing and humiliating, and illegally imprisoning a selected group of people, along with bucking the world on global warming issues, world court issues, and so on and so, is going to help us in our desperate, and justified, fight, to stop criminal madmen from delivering the blow Scheuer rightly worries about. Lets see just how much cooperation we are going to get from the rest of the world…given our jihad…the GWOT.

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  25. Carroll says:

    Scheuer is a something of a nutcase himself but he is right on this at least. If this is a “War”, if we are “At Wur”, then they should have been treated as prisoners of war.
    I have often wondered how we let the detainees go….what could we possibly do to right this?…except what we did after WWII…declare an “end” to the war and send them home.
    Just say it’s over.
    And go back to dealing with any terrorist activities as individual criminal groups, not a f****** World Wide, Generations Long, Cultural Clash of our Century, Wur on Terror. The lumps we take by turning them loose won’t be nearly as bad the lumps we will get if we continue this.
    This “World Wide Wur” has been the biggest hoax ever pulled on the world. Designed to create the “Wur”.

    Reply

  26. Dan Kervick says:

    Micheal Scheuer is in no position to lecture the country on its morality, and his particular brand of “moral clarity” is something we can do without. He is a creator of the rendition program, a defender of torture and a fanatical, bigoted super-nationalist. Follow the discussion and some of the links in the following:
    http://balkin.blogspot.com/2007/04/moral-philosophy-from-godfather-of.html
    http://balkin.blogspot.com/2007/04/moral-philosophy-from-godfather-of.html
    It’s beyond me how elements of the left have allowed themselves to put Scheuer forward as some sort of hero.
    Reading the testimony is stunning enough, but doesn’t do justice to the man. If you had seen the testimony, and the seething, spitting rage with which he delivered it, you would realize the man is unhinged.

    Reply

  27. Carroll says:

    I think that we are in such a state that if you placed a copy of this statement into the hands of every Congressperson, it would make no difference, it would be ignored.
    Posted by Dennis at December 15, 2007 10:26 PM
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Righto.
    Congress is nothing but a international shopping bazaare where anyone with 30 pieces of silver can buy a slice of America.

    Reply

  28. liz says:

    I agree these are real and true problems but want to refocus a minute on the ABUSES the AMERICAN PEOPLE ARE experiencing. Congress has abdicated all responsibility to every citizen and also to all prisoners. It’s near bout time to recall our entire government because the power people are way far out of control.
    Respectfully, yes prisoners are a problem but no more so than the working Joe right here on the street.

    Reply

  29. reggie says:

    Not a bad piece, apart from the racist anti-immigrant bile.
    ” At this very moment, tens of millions of immigrants – with and without proper papers – are busy adding to the Gross Domestic Product of the United States. Slaughterhouse workers born in a dozen different countries are producing hamburger and beef roast in Garden City, Kansas. Haitians are cutting sugar cane and picking oranges in Florida.
    Salvadoran women are tending other people’s children in every major city of the country. Nigerians, Liberians and Sudanese drive cabs in Washington DC. And refugees from countries torn by the American military, such as Vietnamese and Laotians, have settled in cities large and small. They deserve respect and human dignity – and a path to citizenship in a county that many have sweated blood to enter.”
    See the report ‘Nativism in the House’:
    http://www.searchlightmagazine.com/index.php?link=template&story=213

    Reply

  30. easy e says:

    More “blunt, sensible clarity” on TIME’S Persons of The Year: How about the INNOCENT VICTIMS of unwarranted influence and misplaced power which has detrimentally changed the course of the United States and the entire World forever?
    “…In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes…” -Dwight Eisenhower
    The enabling of this greed-based cancer has infested itself into all institutions of U.S. society. Change only occurred once people rose up and hit the streets (Jim Crow, MLK, Vietnam).
    Sadly, the military-industrial complex has successfully created a comatose U.S. citizenry. Penetrating the barriers of the complicit corporate media to counter PERPETUAL DISINFORMATION (torture, Iran nukes, civil liberties, Iraq WMD & illegal War, 9/11***, etc., etc., etc.) is the biggest challenge to help regain our constitution.
    God only knows what the remedy is for this to happen and for America to regain its moral conscience and sense of outrage.
    *** Exposing and prosecuting the real masterminds behind 9/11 (as opposed to OBL, Al Qaeda) should be a patriotic requisite: those who successfully planned and engineered the most sophisticated black psychological operation in history on behalf of their hegemonic, fascist-based sponsors & benefactors (U.S. Defense Industry/Oil/Anglo/Zio interests, etc.). For the sake of the victims, TO HELL WITH THE INSTITUTIONALIZED OBL/AL QAEDA MYTH.
    * OBL DENIES 9/11 INVOLVEMENT
    http://www.public-action.com/911/oblintrv.html
    http://archives.cnn.com/2001/US/09/16/inv.binladen.denial/

    Reply

  31. Dennis says:

    I think that we are in such a state that if you placed a copy of this statement into the hands of every Congressperson, it would make no difference, it would be ignored.
    There is little reason for the American people to have confidence in the Congress that we now have.
    And while I’m at it, throw in the Supreme Court as well.
    You don’t have to be a blind conservative not to see it, just an ignorant one to deny it.

    Reply

  32. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://tinyurl.com/2x474s
    December 15, 2007
    Impeach Mukasey — or for God’s sake, at least throw the punch
    As I recall from my days of youthful delinquencies, when you’re eyeball to eyeball with a nasty neighborhood troll, and you know beyond any reasonable doubt that he’s about to rudely inflict some dominance, the most judicious thing you can do is to coldcock the s.o.b., then stand over his bleeding proboscis and crumpled frame and let him know that that was just a warning. In short, you must first get the menacing thug’s attention. And reason won’t work. Not as a first option.
    I offer this experiential advice to the various chairs and ranking members of Congressional oversight committees who are now eyeball to eyeball with the newest Bushie troll on the block, Attorney General Michael Mukasey. You had best coldcock him now, while you have the chance. And that means moving to impeach his sexagenarian ass — to get his attention, if nothing else.
    It didn’t take Mr. Mukasey long to establish that he’s right out of the Gonzales mold of executive power über alles. Surely this does not come as a surprise. After all, during his confirmation hearings he sat and cagily testified to his jurisprudential crush on presidential Iron Men, suggesting that the courts and Congress were but mere Constitutional appendages and afterthoughts when it comes to interpreting the law. They’re cute, but what really gets his blood flowing where it counts is that big lug of an insensitive brute in the Oval Office.
    Gentlemen, you can’t reason with thinking like that. Not as a first option, anyway. So when Mr. Mukasey writes you boys slimy letters dripping with obstruction of justice — letters declaring that his “department would not comply with Congressional requests for information [on the CIA videotape-destruction scandal]” — then you had better come out swinging. Hard.
    When he writes insultingly to the Senate Judiciary Committee that his virtuous goal is to “resist political pressure,” therefore he “will not at this time provide further information,” then you had better throw your best punch. Fast.
    And when, through henchmen, he writes to House Intelligence Committee leaders that their prying poses “significant risks” to his own investigation — meaning the House might uncover something of anti-administration value in a timely manner — then you had better deck him. Flat.
    Even Republican ranking members aren’t happy about Gonzales’ Second Coming. “We,” penned Republican Peter Hoekstra, for example, along with House Intelligence Chairman Silvestre Reyes — “are stunned that the Justice Department would move to block our investigation.” They added, somewhat pathetically, that “parallel investigations occur all of the time, and there is no basis upon which the Attorney General can stand in the way of our work.”
    Actually, there is. Yet the insidious “basis” upon which the attorney general is stiffing them is one that, at long last, should be brutally confronted.
    The exercise of contemporary executive-privilege assertions began innocently and nobly enough. Its origins lie in the 1950s, when that slimeball of a senator Joseph McCarthy was snooping anywhere and everywhere, witchhunting for slippery commies. He chewed up executive-branch personnel for kicks, abusing the hell out of them before his committee and demanding their papers on whims. President Eisenhower finally declared that enough was enough. He instructed his attorney general to find some legal justification — however creative — to put a stop to it. His a.g. did, and to a stop, it came — along with McCarthy’s career.
    But, like all presidential powers left unfettered, the one of executive privilege has grown monstrously over the decades. It is now used, quite simply and blatantly, to obstruct justice — to crush even incipient Congressional efforts in its proper Constitutional role of investigation and oversight. And Republicans under the Bush administration are getting as worried about it as Democrats. They smell a Democratic president in a year, and envision the same presidential tactics used against — at some possible point — a Republican-led Congress.
    Hence rolling back the privilege is, for now, of keen bipartisan interest. But given that we’re talking the abominably thuggish Bush administration, Congress would have to coldcock it. A bill to impeach the attorney general for obstruction of justice would be a nice touch — one that could engender bipartisan support, and one that just might get the administration’s attention.
    Now, would Democrats commit such an intelligent act of self-defense — even given a push from the notably meekless across the aisle? Ah, there’s the rub.

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  33. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I see Mukasey is the piece of shit Bush bootlicker I figured he was.
    Its amazing, there seems to be a fungus in Washington, it makes Democrat’s balls fall off.

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  34. Pernicious Pavlovian says:

    But, but we don’t torture! The insane boy king George said so! Didn’t he say exactly that? Why of course America’s insane boy king George said so. Aren’t Americans supposed to believe “our” president? I think that’s what “everyone” keeps saying. Screaming? So what should Americans do when our president is lying through his teeth and the Congress is lying through it’s teeth and mainstream media is supporting the very lies of our president and Congress? Hmmm, I wonder exactly what a patriotic civic minded and honest American should do. As our great American experiment in democracy dies a death from a thousand cuts, what should any American do?

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