Thursday, August 09, 2007

Der Chimpenfuhrer on Accountability

THE PRESIDENT: Lewis Libby was held accountable. He was declared guilty by a jury and he's paid a high price for it.

Al Gonzales -- implicit in your questions is that Al Gonzales did something wrong. I haven't seen Congress say he's done anything wrong. As a matter of fact, I believe, David, we're watching a political exercise. I mean, this is a man who has testified, he's sent thousands of papers up there. There's no proof of wrong. Why would I hold somebody accountable who has done nothing wrong? I mean, frankly, I think that's a typical Washington, D.C. assumption -- not to be accusatory, I know you're a kind, open-minded fellow, but you suggested holding the Attorney General accountable for something he did wrong.

Move along, nothing to see here...

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Let's move to Oklahoma

Where we can get this nifty license plate!


On the road

So I'm spending a week or so out in the greater Seattle area, which is why I've been quiet on the latest attacks on our civil liberties. I find vacation to be a useful thing - I get far less worked up about the horrible things that go on than I do when I'm at home (of course, there will be something new next week, so I've got that going for me).

A couple of days ago I took a trip to a cute little town in the San Juan Islands, and since I wasn't feeling well that day, I visited a number of places that regularly have graffiti on the walls. All except one had profoundly anti-Bush graffiti, and the one that didn't had something saying "F___ the GOP". It was enough to make an ill drmagoo feel a little better about the world.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

On the comments below

If you read colonial history, you will find that one of the driving forces behind revolution was the concept of the "general warrant." These odious documents authorized the king's agents to search anyone at any time for any reason.

Taxes? Hardly. A popular shibboleth, granted, but colonial leaders knew that 1) the taxes levied were consumption taxes, which individuals could control and avoid, 2) the colonists were taxed far less than inhabitants of the home islands and 3) representation wouldn't have changed a damn thing.

But the searches? Those were VERY real and incredibly offensive to both revolutionary leader and the everyday blacksmith. In the view of the framers, such interferences with privacy justified what we now call "regime change." [Editor's note: another key concern was the tendency of European princes to make war for sport. To deal with that, the framers gave warmaking powers to Congress and required a war expenditure vote AT LEAST every two years, thanks for ignoring that part, folks.]

On this bill, Geoffrey Stone of the University of Chicago Law School [Editor's note: Yours truly was admitted to the U of C Law School, but 1) I couldn't afford it and 2) there is an underground tunnel from the law school to the law dorm. I never would have seen the sun!] said that the
amendment authorizes the government to wiretap or intercept any international communication, even if one of the participants is an American citizen on American soil, as long as the intercept is undertaken for foreign intelligence purposes and is "directed at a person reasonably believed to be located outside of the United States
Think about that. Gone is "probable cause," that must be found by a judge. Now it is the ATTORNEY GENERAL who REASONABLY BELIEVES that the intercept is for "FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE PURPOSES." And those are WHAT?

So, if Mrs. Pete goes to Europe (as she always does) and calls me, our conversation is now fair game. Thanks guys.

Monday, August 06, 2007

I hate Will Rogers

Or at least that "I belong to no organized political party" line because it is so damned accurate.

Question #1 for the Democratic leadership: You have a rogue administration that has shamelessly broken statutory law and flouted constitutional guarantees of privacy and personal security in the name of "terrorism." Why on earth do you give him MORE power?????