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Supreme Court Guts Due Process Protection

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Reader Walter passed along this distressing sighting from Chris Floyd’s blog. American civil liberties were gutted last week, and the media failed to take note of it.

The development? If the president or one of his subordinates declares someone to be an “enemy combatant” (the 21st century version of “enemy of the state”) he is denied any protection of the law. So any trouble-maker (which means anyone) can be whisked away, incarcerated, tortured, “disappeared,” you name it. Floyd’s commentary:

After hearing passionate arguments from the Obama Administration, the Supreme Court acquiesced to the president’s fervent request and, in a one-line ruling, let stand a lower court decision that declared torture an ordinary, expected consequence of military detention, while introducing a shocking new precedent for all future courts to follow: anyone who is arbitrarily declared a “suspected enemy combatant” by the president or his designated minions is no longer a “person.” They will simply cease to exist as a legal entity. They will have no inherent rights, no human rights, no legal standing whatsoever — save whatever modicum of process the government arbitrarily deigns to grant them from time to time, with its ever-shifting tribunals and show trials.

It is hard to overstate the significance of this horrid decision. The fact that the Supreme Court authorized this land grab says we no longer have an independent judiciary, that the Supreme Court itself is gutting the protections supposedly provided by the legal system. Per Floyd:

In fact, our most august defenders of the Constitution did not have to exert themselves in the slightest to eviscerate not merely 220 years of Constitutional jurisprudence but also centuries of agonizing effort to lift civilization a few inches out of the blood-soaked mire that is our common human legacy. They just had to write a single sentence.

Now Floyd saw this mainly as an issue of the treatment of enemy combatants and Obama hypocrisy about torture, which is bad enough:

The Constitution is clear: no person can be held without due process; no person can be subjected to cruel and unusual punishment. And the U.S. law on torture of any kind is crystal clear: it is forbidden, categorically, even in time of “national emergency.” And the instigation of torture is, under U.S. law, a capital crime. No person can be tortured, at any time, for any reason, and there are no immunities whatsoever for torture offered anywhere in the law.

And yet this is what Barack Obama — who, we are told incessantly, is a super-brilliant Constitutional lawyer — has been arguing in case after case since becoming president: Torturers are immune from prosecution; those who ordered torture are immune from prosecution….let’s be absolutely clear: Barack Obama has taken the freely chosen, public, formal stand — in court — that there is nothing wrong with any of these activities.

Yves here. The implications are FAR worse. Anyone can be stripped, with NO RECOURSE, of all their legal rights on a Presidential say so. Readers in the US no longer have any security under the law.

Roman citizens enjoyed a right to a trial, a right of appeal, and could not be tortured, whipped, or executed except if found guilty of treason, and anyone charged with treason could demand a trial in Rome. We have regressed more than 2000 years with this appalling ruling.

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116 comments

  1. Vinny G.

    Shocking! Absolutely shocking!

    I am beginning to believe Oh’bama was nothing but a Trojan Horse all along, a virus whose sole intent is to destroy whatever Bush left of the Constitution. Two administrations one after another assaulting incessantly every remnant of civil liberties and human rights cannot be coincidental.

    This development, plus his escalation of America’s involvement in the Middle East, plus his betrayal of the American people with his pathetic healthcare bill, plus the rapid impovereshing of the American people to the immense benefit of his accomplices on Wall St, to me indicates just one thing: This man is an Antichrist by every definition of the word.

    This is a very sad day for America.

    Vinny

    1. DownSouth

      Vinny G.,

      Two great metaphors to describe Obama–Trojan Horse and Antichrist.

      FDR betrayed his fellow bluebloods.

      LBJ betrayed his fellow white southern racists.

      And Obama betrayed his fellow blacks of humble circumstances.

      1. Vinny G.

        DownSouth,

        Indeed. I am beginning to suspect that he is also a Machiavellian master.

        You know, I live in Chicago, Oh’bama’s home town. There are now literally tens and tens of thousands of black panhandlers and homeless people on the streets of Chicago and its suburbs. At night, the city’s pathetic 19th century subway system turns into a homeless shelter. You have to jump over people sleeping on the floor to get to the exits. If you go downtown during the day, there are at least 3 or 4 panhandlers (most of them black) on every block. If you walk around downtown at night now, in December, you see people curled up in make-shift sleeping bags placed on top of the subway vents (to get warmer air). And it’s not just men anymore. It is women, children, and grandmothers. It is the most vulnerable members of society.

        This is Oh’bama’s town. I have lived in this town for 10 years, but since he took office it seems the homelessness situation among blacks has almost tripled.

        What is most hilarious is that in his public appearance (such as that flashy Christmas singing show he had yesterday) he surrounds himself with black artists. But then in private he surrounded himself with rich Jewish banksters. What a farce! I am regretting dearly I voted for this man.

        Vinny

        1. dlr

          Um, It is really offensive to characterize the scum bags Obama gets financial advice from as “Jewish” bankers. This is insulting to Jewish people everywhere. Some of them may be Jewish, but it isn’t their Jewishness that makes them scum bags, it is their banker-isness.

      2. Kevin de Bruxelles

        While he is certainly a Trojan horse; I hate to disagree with you DS but I do not agree that Obama comes from humble circumstances.

        His Kenyan father, through his close relationship with the CIA-backed Tom Mboya, was felt to be important enough at 23 to be included in a Cold War airlift to US universities of bright African students in 1959. He later went on to Harvard and then back to Kenya to work for an oil company. He was a key player in Kenyan political circles but was ultimately limited by a serious drinking problem. I think it is no exaggeration to say that his father belonged to the ruling class of Kenya.

        His mother, Ann Dunham, had a Ph.D. in anthropology and ended up working in the US embassy in Indonesia a few years after the bloody CIA-backed coup that brought Suharto to power and left at least half a million of the Indonesian version of “suspected enemy combatants” dead. She married Lolo Soetoro, who was a key player in connecting US oil companies with the Suharto regime. While in Indonesia Obama’s mother also worked for the Ford Foundation and USAID. I wouldn’t exactly say that Ms. Dunham was ruling class but she had fairly close associations with very powerful people. However I would definitely say that Lolo Soetoro was part of the Indonesian ruling class. In any case Obama went to elite ruling class schools while in Indonesia.

        When Obama was sent back to Hawaii, he went to the elite Punahou School. His grandmother was a VP at the Bank of Hawaii so she could help pay her grandson’s high tuition.

        Obama went on to study at Occidental, Columbia (where he was one of only eight students chosen by Zbigniew Brezezinksi for his Soviet Studies program), and Harvard.

        So while he is not exactly a Kennedy, I would not at all say that Obama has any humble circumstances. He has lived a life of privilege and has been associated with many powerful people.

        In any case the worst is yet to come. Obama real raison d’etre will be to pick up where Bush failed by “reforming” Social Security and Medicare. The left are the gatekeepers of these two programs so it is important to neutralize their resistance before these programs can be looted. And if the health care debate is any indication, and I believe it is, then the left will fail miserably to defend these programs from Obama and the rest of the Democrats’ tender mercies. As a reward the right will veer even further to the right assuring weak opponents for the Democrats and, more importantly, more space for Obama to veer to the right and still be considered “the lesser of two evils” which is the criteria used today by most of those on the left who are still supporting Obama.

  2. Richard Kline

    —And these powers acceded to the Executive will be used. Oh the idea is that, as of now, these will only be used ‘rarely,’ and against ‘bad guys.’ Critics and truth-tellers are bad guys from the standpoint of the powers that be.

    Not that everyone in the US has had due process during the course of American history. If you were a non-Protestant immigrant, person of any color other than ‘white’ [sic], or advocate of some political position judged ‘un-American’ prior to 1954 or so, you couldn’t expect any kind of due process from the Federal Government, and far less than that from many state governments. The extension of fair play, human rights and, y’know, basic human decency to the rest of the population and those passing through was a grudging and embarassed concession, wrested from power by noncompliance and tireless legal advocacy. Many in the US have never accepted this change, have wanted to retain the color of authority to abuse anyone who, in a given hour, they hate and fear, or simply hold in contempt. We have been moving toward this moment since Reagan came into office and now we are there.

    These powers will be used, on some widespread and intentional basis to undermine and as necessary supress dissent, some time in the next twenty years. To me, that is a given. The effort will fail because the long trend in American history has been the steady extension of civil rights and liberties to the population as a whole. But, consider this: American policy for four generations _abroad_ has been exactly what the policy was for generations before against indigenous resistance in North America: massacre, suppression, disapperance, gulags, show trials, legislative theft, Executive subjugation. There isn’t a day where this approach isn’t operative in some country off-shore where ‘American interests’ are advanced; if you bother to educate yourself at all, this is incontestable. What we are really seeing is that as resistance to the US mounts abroad and those efforts off-shore become more compromised of success, as opposed to continuance, the methods are seeping home. A crucial part of the American Big Lie is that we refuse to acknowledge the blood on our hands overseas and the implied racism embedded in our policies. Now, we will bring them home to use against ‘dissenters.’

    I don’t know that such an effort will be major in scale, but it will be tried. Because the unchecked power to disapper individuals one finds vexatious is simply too tasty for those who hold it to deny themselves the pleasure of the option. We can see now how little in the way of principle and nothing whatsoever in the stead of scruple are possessed by the kind of folks who make their address on Pennsylvania Avenue for four years. We are fascist now de facto, and before long at all our deeds will be fascistic in substance and de jure. Not the citizenry en masse, but those who have hollowed out and taken over the government of us all. I look forward to the failure of that program—and it will fail execrably—but not to the walking of the road from this day to that one.

    1. psychohistorian

      Richard, you are absolutely correct. American imperialism is totally hidden from US citizens.

      The international oligarchy that owns the multi-national corporations that own the American government have almost succeeded with destroying the underclass in our country. If the current direction continues, the Shock Doctrine elimination of what social welfare exists in the US will happen in the next few years.

      This sickening slow motion train wreck of the American dream for the underclass is very hard to watch. The implications for society’s social structure going forward are sad.

      It seems to have taken us an extra 25 years to get to Orwell’s 1984. What a pathetic species we have become.

  3. Richard Kline

    Obama _was_ nothing but a Trojan Horse. Didn’t anyone listen to his program while he was running? He’s Mr. System. The slogan was “Change,” but the program was “What he said, but smarter.” Watching progressives tie themselves up in goo-goo eyed knots over the guy was vomit-inducing from my window on the world, lemme tellya.

    1. Jojo

      The Republicans pushed people sitting on the fence to the Obama camp by running the idiotic pairing of McCain/Palin. And yet, even running these two dolts, the Republicans only lost the popular vote 53% to 47%. Had they fielded a more sensible combo, Obama would likely still be a little known senator (and failed presidential candidate) from Illinois.

      Perhaps the Republicans learned something from their 2008 debacle?

      1. Sid

        Had Obama lost, progressive types everywhere would still be howling in outrage. Even if Obama himself never played the race card, the progressives would be happy to play it for him.

        What’s more, if a Republican had won, the outcome for the financial sector would be more or less the same, but we’d be hearing about how different it would have been if Obama were President.

        The Cult of Obama would only grow with popular and progressive outrage, because Obama would be a symbol with no pesky responsibility for making decisions or discomforting track record. Even more than before the elction, he could be whatever we imagined him to be, with no uncomfortable facts to spoil our illusion.

        Conspiracy theories would be running wild. They “stole” the election! The (racist/Jewish/Republican/Rethuglican) bankers secretly plotted to keep Obama from leading us to Obamunism.

        Sometimes you have to get what you think you want to know how disappointing it really is.

      2. FreeKirk

        The MSM was more responsible for the McLame/Palin ticket and that includes the “Stop Hillary Express”, or SHE from the right. The SHE put BO into office by stopping the Clinton machine. The demon-crats did the exact same thing the SHE was telling the Republicans to do. The Dems voted for McLame in the primary just as the Reps voted for BO in the primary. The Dems knew that the Rep base would never vote for McLame and the only reason he got as many votes as he did was Palin.

        The two-party system was designed to continue a progressive path starting at Teddy R and Woodrow W. WE have all been duped by most ancient battle of good vs evil. If you truly believe in the Constitution there should be no party. The oath taken to “preserve and defend the Constitution of all enemies foreign and domestic” should be the only path WE all follow. Voting for the lessor of 2 evils has been the catalyst to the condition we now endure.

        Cpl Kirk USMC(V)

      3. patti

        I completely agree with Sid. It’s better that O was elected so the multitude can see exactly what they voted for. Had he lost, he would have had a free ride with no accountability.
        What you see is what you get, now they just need to open their eyes.

    1. alex black

      So THAT’S how they got Ben Nelson to agree to be that 60th vote! I was wondering what they were doing in that backroom for 13 hours. That’ll teach you, Ben – don’t you EVER be an “enemy of the state” like that again!

      BTW, did the “Wise Latina” weigh in on the opinion? I defer to her, as being a white male renders my opinions inherently incorrect.

    1. Vinny G.

      Oops, you’re right — I better be careful. For a second I forgot that as a US citizen I no longer have any Constitutional protection…:)

      Vinny

  4. Mrs. Watanabe

    I guess I have to disagree with this. This is not new…

    Due process is an issue for criminal law… enemy combatants are not accused of crimes. They’re POWs.

    The difference is that you punish a criminal for what he has done. It’s retrospective. Sure, due process is necessary in that context and the 5th Amendment is applicable.

    We imprison an enemy combatant for what he will do. It’s prospective. Due process isn’t necessary; what would be its purpose? Indeed, the combatant may not have done anything wrong yet, other than being a combatant. That’s enough. We’re at war and he’s an enemy soldier.

    The 5th Amendment of the Constitution does not apply to enemy combatants; it’s not new law:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnson_v._Eisentrager

    It was easier when our enemies wore uniforms… but most of these guys admit to being combatants, so they really should be treated as POWs. The applicable law is the Geneva Convention.

    1. kstills

      Thank you, Mrs. Watanabe, for a brief interlude of legal sanity.

      Folks, read the ruling (I have not read this one, but I’ve read similar) and the precedents.

      You might end up arguing the details, buts thats about it.

      1. Dan Duncan

        No doubt.

        I love reading jurisprudential commentary on a legal decision when the case in question isn’t even cited. At the time I write this, we have a post and 30 comments…and not once does anyone mention is the actual case even cited.

        Maybe if you’d look up Rasul v Myers you’d get a few more facts before spewing forth the godawful, perfunctory, ever ubiquitous, tedious and predictable…ORWELLIAN REFERENCES.

        Now I’m not saying that if you did actually take the time to read about the case in question that you’d agree with its ruling (which really was a Non-Ruling).

        OK, fine.

        But at least you’d have an idea as to what the issues are and then you could intelligently discuss them…instead of this 18 year old Literature 101 Owellian nonsense.

        And to “i on Ball Patriot”: Deception is not the strongest political force on then planet.

        Ignorance is.

        Anyways, I know it’s like, you know, totally boring but the case is a little more nuanced than “OMG, the government can come and rip you out of bed and torture you! Not cool, dude!”

        I know: Let’s pretend Orwell is asking you the following questions:

        1. Can the legal experts on this blog (because, clearly there are many!) even state what the torture was of these four individuals in the case at hand? Not the bullshit, vague assertions that you picked up from Daily Kos…but the actual asserted torture of these individuals? What say you, Richard Kline, Vinny G and i on ball patriot?

        Maybe, one could reasonably discuss whether, in fact, sleep deprivation, etc is torture. Who knows, maybe these guys weren’t hung upside down, while getting severe electrical shocks from a demented masochist.

        2. OK, so let’s assume we do, in fact have 4 cases of torture. Should our government officials face personal liability for their actions, when acting within the capacity of their position? Or another way: If government attorneys give the “Green light” to act in a certain manner, and the government official does so…should that government official face Personal Liability? Or should all liability fall on the John Yoos in government?

        3. If you say “Yes” to above, can you envision unintended consequences? Do unintended consequences even matter on an issue so grave as torture?

        4. As a culture, what should we be more concerned with: The potential damaging effects of those unintended consequences or that we are condoning a mild form of torture?

        5. Does “torture” have a degree? Is the statement “mild torture” the same thing as “a mild form of pregnancy”?

        6. Should our Courts rework the concept of governmental immunity?

        7. Should “enemy combatants” be granted access to our civil courts?

        Lest you think I’m trying to bring some equanimity to this “discussion”, I’ll conclude with the following, as a good faith demonstration of my Lefty, Collegiate Credentials.

        “Ooohh, the US is evil. We’re bad! We are Orwellian!”

        Good night. Just writing the above tripe…it seems like something one would say to a leather clad dominatrix, wielding a whip.

        “I’m an American. And I’ve been really bad! I’m a naughty boy!”

        1. MRegan

          Here is the pdf to the ruling for those so inclined:

          http://pacer.cadc.uscourts.gov/docs/common/opinions/200801/06-5209a.pdf

          From the ruling:

          “Accepting plaintiffs’ argument that RFRA imports the
          entire Free Exercise Clause edifice into the military detention context would revolutionize the treatment of captured combatants in a way Congress did not contemplate. Yet, the majority’s approach is not much better. It leaves us with the unfortunate and quite dubious distinction of being the only court to declare those held at Guantanamo are not “person[s].” This is a most regrettable holding in a case where plaintiffs have alleged high-level U.S. government officials treated them as less than human.”

          I would note for others reviewing this thread that DD has a tendency to respond to those who disagree with him in Reever’s fashion.

          1. run75441

            MRegan:

            They appear to be non-entities, not granted the rights of soldiers under the Geneva Convention and not grabted the rights of citizens under the constitution. What would you call them?

        2. john bougearel

          Dan,

          The ruling that someone, an individual, perhaps you can be declared an “enemy combatant” by the govt and denied due process, means you can disappear ~ “just like that” (finger snaps).

          The ruling itself is the mechanism that makes it legal to for the govt [read fascist state] make people disappear. Do you have any idea how broad the legal interpretation of what an “enemy combatant” really is? I do not think you full appreciate how broad the legal definition of enemy combatant is, it is without limit.

          Obfuscation of legal definitions themselves are unlimited. And the scope of legal definitions can be as narrow or broad as the state [ex-govt] wants to make it. Here I am reminded of how narrow Clinton’s definition of “sex” with Monica Lewinsky was. Clinton’s finest moment as President might have been when he wrangled in court over the definition of what “IS” is. Clinton exposed to everyone how legal banter can devolve into silliness and theater. An Enemy combatant is any god-dammed thing the govt deems it to be.

        3. i on the ball patriot

          Dan Duncan said: “And to “i on Ball Patriot”: Deception is not the strongest political force on then planet.

          Ignorance is.”

          Ignorance of deception gives deception its dominant position.

          Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.

        4. Doug Terpstra

          “Should our government officials face personal liability for their actions, when acting within the capacity of their position?”

          Oh heavens NO, not if they were “following orders”. They are patriotic “good soldiers”.

          Just to be sure let’s ask the same question twice more so we can answer NO three times in a row and make it so:

          “If government attorneys give the “Green light” to act in a certain manner, and the government official does so…should that government official face Personal Liability? Or should all liability fall on the John Yoos in government?”

          Well NO and NO. After all, John Yoo, Gonzo and fellow OLC weasels were also just “following orders”. Truth is we’d have to take it up the chain to bush and cheney, and we now know that some people are more equal than others. They are above the law, and we can’t we handle the truth.

          Let’s just recognize the obvious: some animals are more equal than others

        5. wally

          “Should our government officials face personal liability for their actions”

          Of course. That’s not in dispute – see “Nuremberg Trials”

    2. i on the ball patriot

      Mrs. Watanabe you are wrong, this is VERY new, the ruling was let stand just last week.

      And those who still believe that the supreme court is still capable of metering out justice (I am not one) were hopeful that the court of supreme dunces would take this twisted thinking of ‘war on abstractions and what ‘we’ think others might do’ and shove it up the ass of history.

      The plus here is that more and more of those who were hopeful will see that the ’rule of law’ in scamerica has been hijacked by the wealthy ruling elite through years of aggregate generational corruption and now stands as a complete farce.

      Can we all say: Nebulous laws selectively enforced to benefit the wealthy ruling elite?

      Reread Richard Kline’s comments above where he contends that the methods of scamerican foreign imperialism are seeping home. I would say they are already here.

      Legal sanity is a fiction in scamerica. You should really read the ruling.

      Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.

    3. gruntled

      Mrs. Watanabe,

      I wonder if you really read and thought about what you wrote. The ruling allows a person in the executive branch to hold indefinitely, without habeas corpus, a person by assigning him a special designation–enemy combatant. When stripped of all the legalize, this ruling turns the President or his designee into someone with unlimited powers, someone who can say “Off with his head” and the poor “combatant” will lose his head. No sane person can agree with this nonsense!

    4. Vinny G.

      We also imprison 1 percent of the US population, and keep 3 percent of the population through the revolving door of probation and parole. At any given moment, there are 3 million people in the US behind bars, and another 9 to 10 million on probation or parole. This is far, far more than any other nation in the world, including communist China. Most inmates are mandated to work for 25 cents per hour, which is slave labor, of course.

      Also, most of the inmates are members of minorities, usually blacks. Study after study showed that the so-called US justice system is far harsher on members of the same race as our blessed president. And, by the way, Southern states (i.e., Texas, Louisiana) do pass the harshest and most unjust sentences.

      We also build 2 new prisons per month, many of them being NASDAQ listed private prisons. These are the most profitable corporation in America today. Some are: Correction Corporation of America, Cornell Companies, Geo Group, and their stock prices has been going through the roof in recent years.

      To make the horror and corruption complete, there are sitting judges that are on the boards of directors of these prison corporations. Imprisoning people is big business in Gulag America.

      The justice system of this country is a sham, and a joke. It is indefensible.

      And, one more thing. There are tens of thousands of inmates suffering from various chronic or expensive-to-treat diseases such as HIV or Hep C, who purposely committed a crime (usually a federal crime such as damaging a Postal Service office) in order to be incarcerated and thus receive treatment. On the streets these people would not receive health care, but in prison they do (albeit low quality care).

      This is the real America, Mr. Watanabe…

      Vinny

    5. john bougearel

      Mrs Watanabe,

      You are damned right it’s prospective, and not retrospective. You make a fine distinction, and it is precisely that distinction that ought to scare the hell out of everyone who might be inclined to do something or say something that might be displeasing to the state!

      This ruling overturns centuries of English Jurisprudence regarding the “presumption of innocence.” This concept has been a part of the legal system for so long, that it is considered common law. Up til now.

      From Wiki:

      This right is so important in modern democracies that many have explicitly included it in their legal codes and constitutions:

      * The Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of the Council of Europe says (art. 6.2): “Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law”. This convention has been adopted by treaty and is binding on all Council of Europe members. Currently (and in any foreseeable expansion of the EU) every country member of the European Union is also member to the Council of Europe, so this stands for EU members as a matter of course. Nevertheless, this assertion is iterated verbatim in Article 48 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

      * In Canada, section 11(d) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms states: “Any person charged with an offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law in a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal”.

      * In France, article 9 of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, of constitutional value, says “Everyone is supposed innocent until having been declared guilty.” and the preliminary article of the code of criminal procedure says “any suspected or prosecuted person is presumed to be innocent until their guilt has been established”. The jurors’ oath reiterates this assertion.

      * Although the Constitution of the United States does not cite it explicitly, presumption of innocence is widely held to follow from the 5th, 6th and 14th amendments. See also Coffin v. United States

      * In the 1988 Brazilian constitution, article 5, section LVII states that “no one shall be considered guilty before the issuing of a final and unappealable penal sentence”.

      * The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article 11, states: Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which they have had all the guarantees necessary for their defence.

    6. TC

      Only problem with your reasoning is that we are NOT at war. The last time we were at war was WWII. The US Government can’t have it both ways. There are no such thing as “enemy combatants” without a declaration of war from the US Government.

      We screwed ourselves when we quit adhering to the US Constitution…. and that all started in 1860… The great experiment ended with the Civil War. We have slowly morphed into Thomas Jefferson’s worst nightmare.

      We are a fascist imperialist empire – Hamilton’s, Henry Clay’s, & Abe Lincoln’s dream.

    7. Rick Kimmel

      The Framers of the Constitution sought to create a government where no one man could order another man locked up for any or no reason. The “framers” were all too familiar with the aristocracies of Europe. The monarchs of Europe did have the power to have someone locked up and didn’t have to explain to anyone why. Under the Constitution, our nation was supposed to be ruled by law, not by men. We, have subordinated the wonderful document called the Constitution, which by the way is why were known as the greatest Republic ever created. We have returned to the old way of being governed by men, not by law. Just because you put a label on a man doesn’t mean he is no longer a man. The Germans in WW II called the French Resistance fighters “Insurgents”. When they caught them, they put them up against a wall and shot them. The members of the Resistance thought of themselves as patriots. They were resisting the occupation of their country. Aren’t we doing the same thing as the Germans? Have we not invaded and occupied other people’s countries? If they resist us, are they insurgents or are they patriots? Do we just label them as “Enemy Combatants” and line them up against the wall? Is that the country you want to live in? I want my Constitutional government back!

    8. Deltaknight67

      Mrs. Watanabe says:
      ( The applicable law is the Geneva Convention.)

      I’m Sorry but the Geneva Convention DOES NOT cover these Combatants,The Geneva Convention only covers uniformd Military of State,ie. US Soldiers,German Soldiers,Spanish
      Soldiers ect.Osamas Combatants do not fit this discription
      as they are un-uniformed Muslim Combatants.A religion is not
      a standing state.If I am Wrong here show me where in the Geneva Convention it states otherwise.
      Thank You

      1. Anon

        The “4th common article” of the Geneva conventions, read it — it applies to *EVERYONE*. No exceptions.

  5. Skippy

    José Padilla (prisoner)

    Criticism of his conviction

    Andrew Patel, Padilla’s lawyer, said after the guilty verdict, “What happened in this trial, I think you have to put it in the context of federal conspiracy law, where the government dozen’t have to prove that something happened, but just that people agree that something should happen in the future. In this case, it was even more strained. The crime charged in this case was actually an agreement to agree to do something in the future. So when you’re dealing with a charge like that, you’re not going to have—or the government’s not going to be required to produce the kind of evidence that you would expect in a normal criminal case.”[36]

    Paul Craig Roberts criticized the jury’s verdict in the Padilla case as having “overthrown” the Constitution and doing far more damage to US liberty than any terrorist could.[37]

    Andy Worthington wrote “[Seventeen] years and four months seems to me to be an extraordinarily long sentence for little more than a thought crime, but when the issue of Padilla’s three and half years of suppressed torture is raised, it’s difficult not to conclude that justice has just been horribly twisted, that the President and his advisor’s have just got away with torturing an American citizen with impunity, and that no American citizen can be sure that what happened to Padilla will not happen to him or her. Today, it was a Muslim; tomorrow, unless the government’s powers are taken away from them, it could be any number of categories of ‘enemy combatants’ who have not yet been identified.”[38]

    Timothy Lynch of the Cato Institute raised several issues with the Padilla seizure in an amicus brief he filed to the Supreme Court. In it, he asks questions such as whether the president can lock up any person in the world and then deny that person access to family, defense counsel, and civilian court review; and the use of “harsh conditions” and “environmental stresses”. He questioned whether such techniques be employed against anyone once the president gives an order. Those legal questions remain unsettled even today.[39] By abruptly moving Padilla from the military brig and into the ordinary criminal justice system, Lynch argued that the Bush administration was able to forestall Supreme Court review of the president’s

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos%C3%A9_Padilla_(prisoner)

    Two engagements in Afghanistan and Two in Iraq, all added and abetted by the US for long term strategic goals (the Chechnya thing was a flop though). Why can’t we just go back to the good old days of sinking Onassis boats…oh thats right he had thrice the insurance on it ha ha ha! Customized speed boat attacks on Venezuelan coastal oil facilities *smerk* whilst making whoopee with the most corrupt South American nation *giggle* fighting the good fight lol.

    Well by the time the tea baggers and any one else with a year 12 history view of the world wake up, they will be bent over a police car asking WTF its just a Quilting Bee for Bearded Guys…that will get ya tazered for sure and a warm up for the fun set to start!

    Skippy…America is sooo stressed that one more Star Wars movie could send the markets crashing, geeks take the day off.

    1. Vinny G.

      There are a LOT of people in US federal prisons serving long sentences based on shallow conspiracy charges. Ages ago I worked in that evil system, so I have seen that first hand.

      Welcome to Gulag America.

      Vinny

  6. Tom S

    The real goal of terrorism wasn’t to destroy us with bombs and airplanes, but to induce us to react in mindless fear and destroy ourselves. With this ruling we’re taking away protection under the law and further diminishing our strength as a free people. Terrorism is achieving its goal because our leaders are afraid.

    1. Skippy

      Tom,

      Terrorism is an *Orwellian* term for those the (us gov) wish to diminish/kill/paint a target on their backs, rather than hear their arguments. If bombing of civilian targets for political gain is the definition of terrorism we must then include these folks see link:

      King David Hotel bombing

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_David_Hotel_bombing

      The King David Hotel bombing was an attack carried out by the militant Zionist group Irgun,[1][2] on the King David Hotel in Jerusalem.[3] The hotel was the site of the central offices of the British Mandatory authorities of Palestine, the Secretariat of the Government of Palestine and Headquarters of the British Forces in Palestine and Transjordan.[citation needed] The attack, carried out on 22 July 1946, was the deadliest directed against the British during the Mandate era (1920-1948).

      Disguised as Arabs, Irgunists planted a bomb in the basement of the main building of the hotel, under the wing which housed the Mandate Secretariat and part of the British military headquarters. Telephoned warnings were sent to the switchboard by the hotel’s main lobby, the Palestine Post newspaper, and the French consulate. The Secretariat or military headquarters, which had separate switchboards, were not notified.[4][5] No evacuation was carried out.[4] The ensuing explosion caused the collapse of the western half of the southern wing of the hotel. 91 people were killed and 46 were injured, with some of the deaths and injuries occurring in the road outside the hotel and in adjacent buildings.[4] Controversy has arisen over the timing and adequacy of these warnings and the reasons why the hotel was not evacuated.[5]

      [edit] Earlier attacks
      Amichai Paglin, Chief of Operations of the Irgun, developed a remote-controlled mortar with a range of four miles, which was nicknamed the V3 by British military engineers. After they had been used to bombard some police stations, six V3s were buried in the olive grove park south of the King David Hotel in 1945. Militants aimed three of them at the government printing press and three at the hotel itself.[4]

      The militants intended to fire them on the King’s birthday, but the Haganah learned about the plan and warned the British through Teddy Kollek of the Jewish Agency. Army sappers then dug them up. On another occasion during a smaller-scale attack, members of an unknown group threw grenades at the hotel, but they missed.[4]

      Skippy…where were the military uniforms then…eh? Should we call a spade a spade, including our forefathers?

      PS My personal favorite is they dressed up as Arabs LOL!

  7. Ann

    Ah, material from my favorite political/current events site makes its appearance on my favorite financial blog. It was only a matter of time.

  8. rageahol

    what is it about interest in the financial system that turns people into paranoid loons? i just don’t get it.

    1. i on the ball patriot

      What is it about interest in the paranoid loon system that turns people into financial loons? It has to do with getting one’s needs met.

      Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.

  9. Rod

    Does anyone else have a strange feeling that what used to be the horizon is now a fence which is evolving into a noose?

    1. Vinny G.

      I propose we declare the people who miss more than two mortgage payments to be enemy combatants, and send them over for “reeducation” to slave labor camps owned by Citi, Bank of America, Goldman Sucks, AIG, and JP Morgan. We can also offer them free waterboarding on the weekends.

      That’ll learn ‘em!

      Vinny

  10. Hugh

    There are a whole slew of things to say about this.

    1. The case in question is Rasul v. Myers (Rumsfeld plus ten high ranking military officers)

    2. The Supreme Court did not rule on this case. It denied certiorari (or cert, for short), i.e. it declined to hear the case. This means at most it is precedent in the DC Circuit (an important circuit for these cases but not the only one). While the Court didn’t choose this case, it could choose another similar case (and there several) in the future to rule on.

    3. Rasul v. Myers is or was a Bivens action. In other words, it is a civil suit. Federal courts in general do not like Bivens actions. The decision itself dates back to 1971 and is one of the after-echoes of the Warren era. It allows for an individual to civilly sue government officials, even in the absence of a specific law, where a violation of a Constitutional protection is concerned.

    4. The reason why Bivens actions are being filed is because the government, first under Bush now under Obama, has done virtually nothing to mount criminal investigations of torture, rendition, and illegal detention. Bivens is a last stab at accountability. (If anyone wishes to counter that Holder has initiated a review of abuses related to torture, all I can say is that you haven’t been paying attention. It is a review of existing materials, not an investigation and is concerned not with torture per se but in torture that went beyond the then guidelines for it.)

    5. I haven’t read the Circuit Court’s opinion but it is my understanding that it ruled for the defendants on the basis of qualified immunity. This means that they could have reasonably assumed that what they were doing was legal at the time. It says a lot about the degradation of our political and judicial culture that our government and judiciary find that torture is some kind of close question and that reasonable individuals (and indeed policymakers with considerable expertise) could, in good faith, disagree about it.

    6. There are different levels and games being played in a decision like this one. The DC Circuit pursued a doctrine of judicial restraint in its decision: avoiding a Constitutional challenge to Bivens when it could rule on other grounds, even if those grounds were specious.

    As I pointed out above, SCOTUS did not accept this case. This doesn’t mean that it won’t rule (and probably overturn Bivens in the future. There is a de facto radical conservative majority on the Court.) but that the right case has not come along yet.

    The government offers up a smorgasbord of arguments for the courts to rule on. I have read the recent brief in the al Zahrani case, another Bivens action in the DC Circuit. It has a really toxic assemblage of legal arguments and hoohaw. Some of these include the contention that the courts have no say so in what goes on in torture, rendition, and detention. As conservative, even reactionary, as the Roberts Court is, it has shown itself to be jealous of the separation of powers (i.e. its turf) and hostile to infringements on it. So it is unlikely that it will put torture and detention beyond judicial review. This should not give us comfort however because as long as its turf is safe, SCOTUS looks to have no problem in signing off on torture and detention as sanctioned and performed by the other two branches.

    So to recap, the Court did not say that the government could torture and detain as it pleases, but that is the practical effect (as long as the government refuses to investigate its own criminality).

  11. john bougearel

    I haven’t read comments yet, but I would like to point out that Obama merely made legal the elimination of due process, whereas “due process” has at least been voided since Martin Armstrong was thrown in jail more than a decade ago.

    And to another degree, America had a shoddy record of “due process” over the last few centuries. Blacks were never accorded legal rights until the 1960s. Due process for blacks was racism, KKK, hangings, whippings, etc. Due process is more an American ideology or value that has only enjoyed a tenuous and fragile existence at best.

    Stripping due process from the constitution is in someways a more honest appraisal of what really passes for the rule of law in the US.

  12. Clampit

    You’re looking at this all wrong – when civil /class war erupts, the private sector is going to need legal precedence for how we treat the public sector elites; else be viewed as barbarians. It seems now that torture…err “enhanced interrogation”, will be perfectly acceptable when collecting information from Paulson, Geithner, Blankfein, and the like. Cool.

  13. Marc Andelman

    As the reasders know, liberty cannot be taken for granted. Do any of you know anyone who was ever put under “gag order”? Prior restraint of speach violates the first Amemdment of the US Constitution, but, it is done all the time.

  14. john bougearel

    I would like to add that the US is now totally ready for the full treatment of the “shock therapy” that the US has been imposing upon the rest of the world since the 1970s. Ford may have to bring back their black Ford Falcon’s to pick folks up in the middle of the night to make them disappear.

    And by the way, last years financial crisis was our first dose of shock therapy folks. And as Yves’ pointed out the takedown of AIG (and the subsequent financial crisis) orchestrated by Goldman Sachs (doing God’s work, mind you) was, we would discover if a proper and full investigation were allowed, Not An Accident. “This looks like no accident. I suspect it was no accident. And no one in authority wants to find out where the truth lies.”

    I would amend Yves remark to say that the authorities know as well as main street America where the truth lies. Truth lies hidden behind the dark shadows cast by the chicanery of our Financial Elites.

    Oh, and if you are wondering why Martin Armstrong has been “disappeared” behind prison walls for the past decade you have to look no further than Goldman Sachs. Connect the dots folks. The precedent has been set. If you mess with the Angels on Wall Street doing God’s work, you will be without recourse in a court of law and beyond the reach of prayers.

    Vaya con Dios, amigos!~

  15. GS

    To the best of my knowledge, we are not at war. Congress did not declare in the manner mandated by the U.S. Constitution or the arguably unconstitutional War Powers Resolution of 1973. How could there be “enemy combatants” without war?

    You may be next after the moslems, jews, gypsies and “perverts.” Too bad about no habeus corpus.

    1. Sugar Hill Dad

      @ john bougearel:

      Your point is well taken, but you’re just a few decades behind the times. While they still use Fords, they don’t have to be black. They use a Gold Taurus and they snatch you in broad daylight! Take a look.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G8CNa_viKg0&feature=player_embedded

      Note that while he was “snatched”, witnesses were held back at gunpoint, by Soldiers! No cops in sight. This was not an arrest in any sense of the term. It was a kidnapping and I’m absolutely livid with rage!

      Were I to sit on the jury during the trial of any citizen who used a Gun to kill those soldiers on the spot, I would find that citizen NOT Guilty. I’m not kidding.

      No government, even ours, will ever extend or protect individual rights. We need to assert them. And we have in our possession an extremely effective NONviolent means of doing so. Jury Nullification.

      Jury Nullification is not about putting people in prison. The government puts people in prison all the time. The Jury decides the validity of oppressive laws that make it into our system despite voting and all the other trappings of representative government. Trial by Jury means judging the Validity of a law. You don’t like Homeland Security? Invalidate it.

      Anyone who says that the ONLY way civilized people can stop these abuses is by waiting 4 more years to vote is a coward. Besides, we DID just vote didn’t we? How’s that going for us?

      We can use Jury Nullification or we can throw bombs. I’m for using nonviolence while we still can.

      How about you?

      Tim in Sugar Hill

  16. john bougearel

    Being seized and detained by soldiers without probable cause or reason is not just happening at protests, it is also happening at border controls. From the Daily Kos today:

    Peter Watts at US Border
    by DarkSyde
    Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 07:58:37 AM PST

    Dr. Peter Watts is a marine biologist by education, a Canadian citizen, and a friend of mine. He’s also a rapidly rising star as the author of several brilliant sci-fi novels like his Rifter’s Series and the latest Blindsight (One of the best sci-fi novels I’ve ever read). But Peter had a terrifying experience at the hands of US border guards last week while he and a friend were returning to Canada. He describes being “punched, pepper sprayed, shit-kicked, handcuffed, thrown wet and half naked” into a holding cell:

    [F]or three fucking hours, thrown into an even colder jail cell overnight, arraigned, and charged with assaulting a federal officer, all without access to legal representation … dumped across the border in shirtsleeves: computer seized, flash drive confiscated, even my fucking paper notepad withheld until they could find someone among their number literate enough to distinguish between handwritten notes on story ideas and, I suppose, nefarious terrorist plots.

    I had a chance to ask Peter about it. Understandably, his lawyer has advised him not to get into a blow-by-blow description beyond what is posted and linked above. But Peter was able to answer a few questions for Daily Kos.

    DarkSyde: You were flagged down/pulled over returning to Canada from the US, what was the reason given?

    Peter Watts: I asked. They wouldn’t tell me.

    DS: Not that it would excuse being brutalized, but people will ask: did you mouth of, say anything smart-ass or flippant?

    PW: I got out of the car. I said repeatedly that I just wanted to see what was going on. A number of commentators have opined that that was, in and of itself, a smart-ass and even aggressive act.

    DS: How did you get out of jail?

    PW: I was granted release on bail around 1pm. I was released sometime after seven. In between, I was told by one of the prison staff that even though I’d made bail, border guards would be waiting to rearrest me the moment I stepped outside, on some other grounds that weren’t entirely clear to me. This did not in fact happen; or rather, while I was met and cuffed by border guards, they only drove me across the border and dropped me at Canada Customs. They kept my rental car and the stuff inside it (including my coat, which was a bit problematic given the whole mid-December-in-Ontario thing).

    DS: Have you ever heard of anything similar happening to other Canadians?

    PW: Especially in the wake of this incident, I’ve heard no end to the first-hand accounts of contemptuous and belligerent treatment at the border. Nobody likes it. Most folks just bite their tongues and keep their eyes down.

    More importantly, though, is that the only reason you heard about anything happening to this Canadian is because I had friends I didn’t know I had. If folks hadn’t mobilized so massively and unexpectedly, I suspect I might still be in jail (I’m told ICE has all sorts of leeway in detaining aliens).

    1. i on the ball patriot

      Coming to scamerica …

      Pretty soon, when they arm these predator drones (I am skeptic enough at this point to believe that they are already armed) they won’t need troops to seize and detain citizens like Peter. They can simply declare him an enemy combatant and off him in a targeted assassination just like the commander in killing, Obama, is doing every day in Pakistan and Afghanistan. And it will all be legal …

      Excerpt;

      “Predator Drones to Scour Border for Illegal Immigrants

      KTLA News

      December 7, 2009

      Predator Drones to Patrol Border at San Diego Predator Drones to Patrol Border at San Diego Video

      PALMDALE — Military predator drones will soon be patroling the skies of Southern California, looking for illegal immigrants and smugglers at the border.

      The unmanned and unarmed planes called Maritime MQ-9 Predator B Guardian Unmanned Aircraft Systems are being unveiled Monday. The aircraft will fly above the California-Mexico border using radar and long-range video cameras in search of illegal immigrants crossing into the country.

      The planes have already been used along the Mexican border in Arizona and Texas, and along the Canadian border in North Dakota.”

      More here …

      http://www.ktla.com/news/landing/ktla-border-drone,0,2011085.story

      Deception is the strongest political force on the planet.

  17. bob

    http://ccrjustice.org/files/Publication_AlQahtaniLog.pdf

    Read through this before you pass any judgement on ‘torture’.

    All 83 pages of it. If you are going to try to defend even the smallest part of these policies, you need to know EXACTLY what is going on.

    Page 25

    1225: Detainee offered food – ate one MRE and drank one bottle of water. Started 9-11 theme. Detainee asked to pray when confronted with photos of child victims and was denied. Interrogators told detainee he was using religion as a tool to escape hard questions. “Al Qaida falling apart” theme was started. Detainee was told God was not with them because He had given detainee to us and helped us defeat Al Qaida and the Taliban. Detainee declared a hunger strike and said he would decide when to eat. Interrogators began “we control all” theme.

    Then on page 26

    0415: Detainee admits story he told interrogators was false. Stated he told the story because he was under pressure. Detainee was told he chose to be here, and was given the list of decisions he made that brought him here and was told he needs to take responsibility for his actions. Detainee was given an IV by corpsman. Detainee was told that we would not allow him to die.

    Page 31

    2120: Medic took vitals and weight. All normal except it may be necessary to give the detainee several IVs because his vitals although normal at the moment continues to fall. Medic had warned the detainee that if he doesn’t drink water that he will be given several IVs in order to replace the fluids that he has lost.

    Page 32

    0150: Interrogators gave detainee rules for the evening. 1) No talking. 2) Face forward. 3) Don’t ask for anything. Detainee almost immediately began to speak. The interrogators screamed at detainee until he stopped. Detainee was reminded of his worthlessness as a human being. He was reminded of the fact that his standard of living is less than a Banana rat. While running the Pride and Ego (P/E) down approach, SSG M showed the bottom of his boot to detainee. Detainee had one of the longest emotional outbursts seen yet. He went into a fit of rage yelling insults in English and Arabic to interrogators. He began to move his arms and legs in his chair as if to want to break away from the shackles and attack. He then began to make statements about his story. He was cut off and told to think about what he wanted to say. He was left in the booth for approximately 10 minutes to think about the statements he wanted to make.

    Page 33

    2000: The doctor arrived and spoke with the detainee concerning any pains. Detainee complained about having pains in his kidneys and the doctor explained that the reason he was experiencing these pains was due to the fact that he has not been drinking water. The doctor suggested to the detainee that he drink water but the detainee refused. The detainee was warned that he would eventually have to be given an enema if he continues to refuse water. Detainee did not appear to care about the doctor’s advice.

    As pointed out by others, the real damage here is done to the people charged with carrying on the ‘interrogation’. The policy of the US governement, demoralizing both the subject(to the point of incoherence and lack of credibility) and the interrogators.

    How many think they could make it through one day of doing this to another human being?

    1. wally

      “Read through this before you pass any judgement on ‘torture’.”

      It is not necessary to read the ‘full details’… that’s for a court to decide. Except that the ruling by the Supreme Court is exactly “no court shall see these claims”.
      And therein is the denial of traditional American principles.

  18. bob goodwin

    Yves, your comment about “Roman Citizens” has a slight problem. Non citizens had no such right to a trial, and the supreme court ruling on “enemy combatants” does not include any citizens.

    Also, the judiciary has stretched outside of their established boundaries since Roe v. Wade. We would be closer to consensus on abortion now had the court not overtly offended the right. Now the shoe has moved to the other foot.

    We have a democracy. The Bush/Obama legacy is blight on our country, and we need the patience to let the voters fix it.

      1. Vinny G.

        But Apostle Paul was a citizen of Rome, and was offered full due process (including a trial in Rome) once he stated his Roman citizenship. It’s described in great detail in the New Testament of the Bible.

        Vinny

        1. The iTod

          …and you believe the new testament to be historically or factually correct?

          i am not saying it is or is not in this case but you are referring to a book of folk tales translated through multiple languages and heavily edited and modified for modern consumption. Christianity is the greatest marketing campaign in the history of humanity.

          1. TC

            The bible is as accurate as any other historical document of its time.

            Paul, being a Roman citizen and going to Rome to be tried has been confirmed by many other secular sources as well as the biblical account.

            Roman historians also documented several aspects of jewish / christian intercourse with Rome. Tacitus & Josephus comes to mind.

  19. The iTod

    Jesus was not the only non-citizen of Rome. Rome had many more non-citizen slaves and immigrant laborers than citizens. One of the leading causes of the Fall of Rome was that eventually there were just too few citizens and many more slaves and non-citizens.

    1. Skippy

      Did Rome fall[?] or just keep changing Capitals up too D.C. The lamb skins of the Holy Roman family’s go right back to Jesus and by that proxy God himself…show us your sheep skin Lloyd C. Blankfein, doer of God works lol.

      Skippy…Just kidding Lloyd your just a minion taking orders.

      PS These things are real, constantly updated and 15 meters long, boggles the mind stuff! Paint me crazy, but historically Christianity has a lot to answer for and is used or uses populations for it purposes not the other way around. Its always the gentle followers of this belief that must run for the hills from the more voracious of their brethren and anyone else in their way.

      1. The iTod

        Gandhi was said to have commented that he thought the beliefs of Jesus were great and it was too bad nobody was practicing them. ;)

  20. Publius

    There is a Letter of Marque and Reprisals granted by the congress of the United States and it was done on behalf of the people of the 50 States of the United States, I think everyone needs to remind the judges of this and se if they don’t change their minds.

  21. James

    If you truely want the news I suggest Infowars (dot) com and watching a few fims that will fill you in. If you want to know whats comming and how we got to where we are and WHO is REALLY running the country and the world. watch Endgame: blueprint for global enslavement, Obama deception, Fall of the Republic. All can be watched for free on youtube.

    Oh yeah and they have declared the start of the world governemnt.

  22. Francois T

    As an FYI, this ruling is just one in an ever longer line of rulings that betrays the absolute moral decay of the USA.

    See the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeal on the Arar case:
    http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2009/11/03/arar/index.html

    To thee actual case:

    “The lower court also dismissed the detainees’ claims under the Alien Tort Statute and the Geneva Conventions, finding defendants immune on the basis that “torture is a foreseeable consequence of the military’s detention of suspected enemy combatants.”

    This is legal bullshit. The Convention against Torture was signed by President Reagan and ratified by Congress in 1993. We are thus legally binded to abide by it. Plus, the very idea that one should EXPECT to be tortured because he/she has been detained on a mere designation (itself without any due process) of being a “suspected enemy combatant” (not CHARGED mind you, SUSPECTED) blows (well, it should blow) the mind of any sane person.

    Finally, it should be noted that for Al-Qaeda recruiters and apologists, America is an Evil Empire, the Great Satan that can’t stop itself to talk about freedom, democracy, human rights and so on and so forth, but is fundamentally lying through their teeth while talking the good talk.

    Hence, by letting the ruling stand, the SCOTUS has aided and comforted the enemy by validating one of their core belief.

    Isn’t this the very definition of treason?

  23. sdbri

    Whoever wrote this article is making things up and doesn’t know the Constitution. Torture is not a capital crime either explicitly or through any ruling by a Supreme Court. Yes it is evil, and it is illegal, but don’t make crap up about the Constitution to make your case. Almost everything stated here is an exaggeration, even when I agree! You do your own cause an injustice.

  24. TC

    “The ruling allows a person in the executive branch to hold indefinitely, without habeas corpus, a person by assigning him a special designation–enemy combatant. When stripped of all the legalize, this ruling turns the President or his designee into someone with unlimited powers, someone who can say “Off with his head” and the poor “combatant” will lose his head. No sane person can agree with this nonsense!”

    There is precedence for this. Abe Lincoln did precisely this to the Peace Party of Maryland in 1860. He had ballots draw up of different colors. If you showed up to vote in Maryland with the wrong color ballot you were immediately arrested and imprisoned – you vote thrown out.

    He arrested over 1600 owners, editors, and publishers of Newspapers (in the north), and shut down freedom of the press. He arrested clergy for not reading a “state prayer” in thier church services. He exiled a sitting US Congressman from Ohio for not voting for legislation that Lincoln endosed.

    Whenever some starts quoting Lincoln I start to become very nervous.

    TC

  25. french surrendering monkey

    Carl Schmidt was the theorician of “dictatorship and laws” during the nazi regime.

    By the way, if what this article states is true, then in a few years we’ll all think stalin was a stand-up comedy actor.

    I wonder how long it takes before the european union starts this too…

    I’m really ashamed these days, because I fear the years to come will be very dark times.

  26. DaveB

    Wait, I don’t get it…

    If the Obama Administration has determined that an ‘enemy combatant’ has no rights and can be denied any protection under the law, why are they hell-bent on holding civilian trials for the terrorists currently held at Gitmo?

    This is completely contradictory…??

  27. DF

    BO did not want the ruling for the Gitmo detainees but for the American citizen that dared to disagree with him. Remember! He is the chosen one any must be obeyed.

  28. JoeB

    The US president in now a dictator. All pretense of moral legitimacy has been stripped away. Who needs morals or ethics when you simply have the power of law?

    “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” – Lord Acton

    Obama’s supporters have to be the most delusional voters in the history of the republic. May one of them be the first to suffer from this ruling. And no, I don’t think this would have had a different outcome under McCain.

    Hope for collapse, “reform” is a fools errand.

  29. Alison

    Does this only work with native born Americans who are pro-life? Anti-tax, anti-healthcare, anti-bailouts, etc?
    I thought they think all enemy combatant detainees were entitled to American lawyers and trials in our courts and that torture is illegal?

    I don’t get it

  30. Bobby

    What’s all the shock about? I would have thought that after Mrs. Nancy Pelosi described American citizens that were protesting at their own Town Halls, NAZI’S, it would have cleared things up for Americans on the nature of this administration. No?

  31. Factsnotcrap

    This is absolute rubbish.The USA is a registered corporation and a fiction under bankruptcy law, statute law is a fiction and does not give rise to the Common Law the Common Law gives rise to a fiction. So this shows conspiracy to defraud; thereby invalidating all said legislation. A “person” is a corporate identity and a “sovereign being” (born on the land)and has more power, and cannot be overridden by any legislation,They are using admiralty law (the Law of the water-statute “ACTS”) which did not come before the law of the land (common law) which super cedes statute. So whose duping who with legalese to appear as “the truth” when it’s not and then whipping it up into agreement to enroll others into scaremongering to protect their sorry backs.The usual cause problem-fear-remedy scam.

    Bring on the commercial liens and then see then scurry

    Wake up so called human rights activists

  32. soleil

    Interesting commentary. I can’t verify it though. Which case are you referring to? Please provide a link to the actual supreme court ruling.

  33. stupidamerkin

    Every one of the Supreme Court Black robe devils, CONgress and the Senate should all be arrested and charged with TREASON and conspiracy to commit TREASON!

    “A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear. The traitor is the plague.”
    Marcus Tullius Cicero

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