Thursday, March 07, 2013

Game of Drones (Slight Return)

You have to give Rand Paul some credit here, for countering the chickenshit trend of recent years, and actually filibustering. Never mind that Paul and his grandstanding friends would probably have been a bit less likely to find his bedrock principles in the face of a Rmoney administration, the fact is that they went ahead and did it.

And sadly, the senatorial cohort did have something of a point; opinions are bound to vary by degrees as to the propriety of extrajudicial killbot assassination. But you can bet that at least some folks might have a change of tune were it, as noted above, we were talking about Rmoney and not Barry O.

It should be noted yet again that, in a long line of truly execrable attorneys general, Eric Holder is a piker. He's certainly no Ed Meese, or even a Thumbscrews Gonzalez. What he is is ineffectual and largely useless; he seems to think that, in a world where the Too Big to Jail claque probably wipe their asses with toilet paper printed with his visage, his priorities should be griefing stoners and finding John Yoo-type parsings of constitutional interpretations.

One might think that an administration headed by a consititutional scholar/lawyer might be more rather than less clear as to where the boundaries of Teh Dronz are actually drawn, if only to prevent the next certifiable retard/bloodthirsty henchman regime from exploiting its full potential, but this is naive, wishful thinking. It implies that there are more than incremental, cosmetic differences between the wings of The Party, and that the horse isn't already way down the road on the subject.

As dismal a place as the world is much of the time, it's certainly better without the likes of Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki. The problem is that the precedent Obama and Holder are setting here, Rand Paul's theatrics notwithstanding, is identical to the one Nixon set when he intoned that it's not illegal when the president does it. Clear-cut supporters of this sort of obfuscatory, potentially despotic rhetoric need to keep that in mind on the off chance this nation loses its fucking mind one more time and hands things off to Jeb!/Rubio or Trump/Palin in 2016.

This is yet another of so many areas where technology has drastically outpaced the law's ability to keep up. But even if Holder had openly repudiated the use of drones and/or extrajudicial assassinations, secret courts, yada yada, it is still too little too late. The Fourth Amendment was gutted while people were obsessing over the Second. We accept infringements of personal liberties in pretty much everything already, from peeing in a cup to get a job that doesn't pay enough to live on, to getting treated like a criminal every time you want to travel by plane or buy allergy medication.

Frankly, the real problem with Holder is not that he's an apologist for the worst excesses of covert foreign policy and clandestine mission creep, it's that domestically, he's just like every other pinhead that staked their legacies by jamming up small fry while letting pelf-saturated thieves and scumbags ass-rape the economy over and over again. If anything, he's just another in a long line of examples from "both" "parties" of the evil of banality.

Maybe it's more reassuring to convince oneself about how much better Obama is than Rmoney would have been, and that's true enough for what it's worth, but let's face it -- the Dow hit a record high, and chances are you're not a dime better off.

No comments: