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Friday, May 02, 2008

Double Secret Probation

At least when they declare martial law in third-world dictatorships (whether nominally communist or just the usual oligarchic kleptocrat we can do bidness with), they make sure you fucking well know it:

A legal brief that exempted the US military from criminal laws following the 9/11 attacks was improperly kept classified for years, the former head of the US government agency in charge of document secrecy said today.

The March 2003 brief, which allowed Pentagon interrogators to claim self-defence in sidestepping laws against torture, was made public earlier this month.

J William Leonard, who directed George Bush's information security oversight office until last year, today told Congress that the document never should have been classified in the first place.

"To learn that such a document was classified had the same effect on me as waking up one morning and learning that after all these years, there is a 'secret' article to the constitution that the American people do not even know about," Leonard said.


It is taken as an article of faith that, beyond all the policy promises and rhetorical head-fakes, the most vital reason to put a Democrat in the White House this time around is to protect what integrity remains of the Supreme Court, since two or three non-authoritarians will probably retire during the next term. Clearly Cheney has used executive firewalls and legal trickery to obscure his own little shadow fiefdom, through which the administration has decided which laws it feels like obeying or not, installing or not. You're on a need-to-know basis, pal, which means you never need to know.

Characterizing the timing of the brief as "post-9/11" is a cheap dodge; the timeline is obviously concurrent with the invasion of Iraq. There's a reason for that, and many reasons why it is critical that the next president must make at least some attempt to tear down these behind-the-scenes maneuvers. It may take a while; clearly these people have managed to infest the very workings of government with ideological termites, who couldn't give less than a shit that they are subverting what used to be at least nominally a government by and for the people. It's now just for their people.

1 comment:

thedevilzone said...

At least when they declare martial law in third-world dictatorships (whether nominally communist or just the usual oligarchic kleptocrat we can do bidness with), they make sure you fucking well know it:

Sure, but would any of them have the grand vision to consider attacking the Netherlands? I think not.

You-Ess-Ay! You-Ess-Ay!