7
   

What is wrong here, why is this happening?

 
 
JTT
 
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 01:40 pm
You have a recent president and a vp, both thankfully gone now, who are, by their own admission, war criminals and felons, and there is virtually nothing raised here.

This doesn't bother you?

Where is the outrage, where is, what should be, a strong defense of what are purportedly American values? You demean both your country and yourselves by not demanding that these people be judged.

It's understandable that the gob1's, the foxy's, the ican's, the genoves', the gunga's, the okie's, the ...'s would countenance such actions but what of the rest, where are you?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 7 • Views: 2,185 • Replies: 33
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BigTexN
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 01:50 pm
@JTT,
<<the sound of crickets chirping>>>

<<an owl hoots>>

<<leaves blowing in the wind>>
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 04:06 pm
@JTT,
JTT wrote:
It's understandable that the gob1's, the foxy's, the ican's, the genoves', the gunga's, the okie's, the ...'s would countenance such actions but what of the rest, where are you?

I've always been right where I am right now:

http://able2know.org/topic/37502-1#post-984364
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 04:31 pm
@JTT,
I have no doubt that things were done by administration officials that amount to criminal conduct...perhaps even International criminal conduct, JTT...

...but sometimes in a political context, it makes more sense to look the other way.

We've got elected officials working on something so dire it may already be too far gone to reverse. But working together...or at least not working at loggerheads...is important right now. And attempting prosecution of these idiots would simply be working in the wrong direction.

This is one of those rare times when I will accept the charge, “You are copping out here, Frank.”

I know I am.

But I honestly think it is in the greater interest of the nation that we turn our heads and hold our noses.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 04:48 pm
@Frank Apisa,
There is no time that those who are supposedly guided by the rule of law should ever look the other way, Frank. This isn't about the USA and the economic turmoil, it's about the immense amount of death and suffering that the USA has heaped upon the people of Iraq.

What you are suggesting is that criminals be given a get out of jail/stay out of jail card because we're in an economic recession, headin' maybe for a depression.

Sorry, that makes no sense at all. Looking the other way for political reasons is the essence of a banana republic.

0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  2  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 05:06 pm
@JTT,
The US has no will, and other countries would have to attack and defeat the US to enforce such a trial.

Leaders generally get away with such things, anyway, unless they are violently overthrown in a coup, or their country is unconditionally defeated in a war.

djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 05:13 pm
i doubt that anything will ever happen to any of the administration, or for that matter any administration

we can however hope, hope they get raped by aids infected pitbulls
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 05:19 pm
@joefromchicago,
I knew that, Joe, but thanks for the wonderful deja view.

I sure was surprised to see Tico there.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 05:36 pm
@dlowan,
Quote:
The US has no will, and other countries would have to attack and defeat the US to enforce such a trial.


Then we're really not that much more advanced than the time of the Romans; it's depressing to have to consider that the world is still ruled by "might is right", Dlowan.

Quote:
Leaders generally get away with such things, anyway, unless they are violently overthrown in a coup, or their country is unconditionally defeated in a war.


That's true, but at the least, they have to feel the fury of right-minded people speaking out. They are the very antithesis of anything good, anything right, anything moral.

Those who offer support, even tacit support, to this degree of criminality are no better than the war criminals/felons themselves.


0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 05:55 pm
@JTT,
Transcript from the 2/10/09 Rachel Maddow Show:

Quote:
But, first, the Obama administration knew that it would be coming into office facing two wars in progress, a massive, massive financial crisis, $1 trillion deficit and all of the other stuff that got worse or did not get fixed during the previous administration. That‘s what the presidential campaign was all about.

What they seemingly did not expect was the insistence and proliferation of calls to investigate and to prosecute, if necessary, officials from the previous administration who may have committed crimes while in office. It seems clear that this is not how the Obama administration expected to be spending their first term but it also seems clear that this is an issue that is not going away. And the calls are getting more insistent, not less, as time goes by. And the calls are coming from political players who are the kind of people a president might find hard to ignore, the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, say.

Last night, at his first press conference, the president was asked to respond to a new proposal from Senate Judiciary chairman, Patrick Leahy, a proposal that a truth commission be convened to investigate the Bush era. Chairman Leahy had said at a speech at Georgetown, quote, “The straightforward mission would be to find the truth. People would be told to come forward and share their knowledge and experiences"not for the purposes of constructing criminal indictments but to assemble the in facts. Such a process could involve authority to obtain immunity from prosecutions.”

Well, now that Senator Obama"excuse me, President Obama has said that he will look into Senator Leahy‘s proposal, there‘s a really important question about this proposal that needs answering. Is Senator Leahy trying to help out the Obama administration here, which does not seem necessarily inclined toward prosecuting Bush administration officials? Is this a way to take prosecutions off the table but doing it in a way that will shush the insistent, persistent claims that prosecutions ought to be pursued?

Or"is Senator Leahy proposing something that actually would clear the way for potential prosecutions by saying that the last and only get-out-of-jail-free card for Bush officials will be for them to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth to this commission? Anyone refusing would be fair criminal investigation game.

I spoke with Senator Leahy earlier today about his proposal, and his answers to my questions may surprise you.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY, (D) JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: You‘re going to have people, some people will say, “Let‘s go ahead and prosecute everybody.” That can take 10 or 15 years. Others want to ignore everything"I don‘t agree with that. But this might be a middle ground where we could at least find out what happened.

When I first came to the Senate, Frank Church had just had a commission like that, looked into the spying on anti-war protesters, some of the abuses of both the FBI and CIA, and just bringing the matters to light and brought about some much needed reforms and changes that lasted for a couple decades. I think we have to do the same thing here, because there were abuses of the law. There were things done that America should not be doing, and let‘s find out about it.

MADDOW: What if a truth commission did a thorough investigation of the type that you‘re describing and they found that, in fact, horrible crimes were committed? If there wouldn‘t be prosecution, how would say"how would saying, “Well, now we know,” and they all legally got away with it"how would that stop these things from happening again?

LEAHY: I think the fact that because it‘s very, very public, and the

way they find out about it, it makes it very clear to the next person"

you try the same thing, you are going to be found out, and you are going to

be prosecuted. You are also going to have some people that will refuse to

perhaps refuse to testify, even though offered immunity. But with the evidence gathered from the others, they can be prosecuted. And, of course, anybody can be prosecuted for perjury.

It‘s not"I‘m a former prosecutor"it‘s not a perfect way of doing it, but it may be the only way to get the truth out. And I think that the only way you‘re going to stop a future administration from being tempted to do some of the same things if the truth has come out. It‘s already been done on the torture issue with some of the military commissions when immunity has been granted. The House has already granted immunity, House of Representatives‘ immunity to each"to a couple of witnesses.

And you either grant enough immunity to get the truth out or you don‘t get it at all, because otherwise, you are just going to have constant stonewalling.

MADDOW: Just to be clear, you would suggest that you would offer immunity in exchange for prosecution"in exchange for testifying if need be, immunity from prosecution. But if people still elected to not testify, that immunity, obviously, would not apply to them .

LEAHY: Yes.

MADDOW: . and there could be"they could be subject to criminal investigation and prosecution?

LEAHY: That‘s right. The only way they would have immunity would be if they testified and testified thoroughly. Because they would be asked under oath, “Have you given us all of the information?” You withhold, that‘s perjury, and you‘d be prosecuted for that.

MADDOW: During his confirmation hearings, some Republicans tried to get now Attorney General Eric Holder to promise that he would not prosecute Bush administration officials. I wonder if you had any discussions about your middle ground truth commission proposal with your Republican colleagues, if you had any reaction to them.

LEAHY: Well, I tried to tell them. They say, “Oh, it‘d be terrible to investigate a former president‘s administration. We would never do that.” I said, “You spent six years doing that to the Clinton administration. You had thousands of hours, spent tens of millions, perhaps hundreds of millions of dollars, investigating then former President Clinton.”

This makes about as much sense as those who say, “Oh, you know, we voted to get us into this economic mess, and we can‘t vote to get us out of this economic mess.” If I was --- if I was a cynic, I would say it was hypocritical. But being a kind, benevolent person, I say it‘s just"they‘re being forgetful.

(LAUGHTER)

MADDOW: The speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and the House Judiciary chairman, John Conyers, have made comments on these"on the same strategic considerations that you are considering with this truth commission proposal. Nancy Pelosi has said that she‘s open to the idea of investigations, possibly prosecutions if necessary. Judiciary Chairman John Conyers in the House says he does want an independent criminal probe.

Do you see the three of you as sort of being on the same page here, maybe differences of degree of focus, differences of emphasis"or do you actually think there are disagreements between your proposals?

LEAHY: No, I think we have all the same goal and that is to find out what happened"maybe use different methods to do it but let‘s find out what happened. Again, I use the example of what Senator Frank Church did when he found out they had"the FBI and CIA investigating people whose only crime was protesting the war in Vietnam.

Now, we saw some touches of this hearing I held with former Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld. The press accounts had been"they sent out camera crews to record people protesting. They found Quakers who protested the war. I said, “News flash, Quakers always protest war.” You sent a crew to find war protesters in Vermont, I said, you could have saved money. I was protesting the war on the Senate floor, you just turn on CSPAN.

MADDOW: Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy. Thank you for your time, sir.

LEAHY: Thank you very much.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MADDOW: I conducted that interview with Senator Leahy earlier this afternoon and I have since spent the rest of the day trying to put his answers in context. As far as I can tell, we now got the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee proposing that any Bush administration official who wouldn‘t testify and tell the truth commission the whole truth about potential Bush-era crimes, those officials should be considered fair game for criminal investigation and prosecution if the facts warrant.

We‘ve also got the House Judiciary chairman, John Conyers, who has called for an independent criminal investigation into the Bush administration‘s detention and interrogation and surveillance policies. We‘ve got the speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, who said last month that she supports investigation of potential Bush-era crimes and prosecutions if the facts so dictate. We‘ve got Rhode Island senator, Sheldon Whitehouse, a former federal prosecutor, saying that Congress has an independent responsibility to investigate alleged crimes by Bush-era officials and he said he intends to discharge that responsibility.

We‘ve got news that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has said that he would support funding for additional inquiries into Bush-era activities by Senate committees. We‘ve got senators Barbara Boxer and Carl Levin, who each voiced support on this very TV show for investigations of Bush-era potential crimes. As did Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, who said Congress‘ responsibility to investigate the Bush administration is, as Senator Whitehouse said, independent of whatever the administration decides to do about this subject.

All of this from Congress even as the new attorney general, Eric Holder, refuses to rule out the possibility of prosecutions.

I think that what we have stumbled into here is an unexpected but rather blatant emerging consensus among powerful Democrats in Washington that alleged Bush-era crimes should be investigated and if need be, prosecuted. Do they mean it? Are they blowing smoke? Is this just designed to make everyone shut up about prosecutions because the Obama administration doesn‘t want to deal with this right now?

Well, over to you, Mr. President. Over to you, Mr. Attorney General. Over to you, congressional leadership. And"well, over to you, concerned, inconvenienced citizen.





Transcript from tne 2/11/09 Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC:

Quote:
SAM STEIN, REPORTER, “HUFFINGTON POST”: No worries. Thank you, Rachel. I appreciate the introduction.

MADDOW: Understated, as always. What did you make of President Obama‘s response to your investigations question? Do you think he answered it, or do you think he dodged it?

STEIN: A little bit of both. He used the answer that he‘s been giving when posed this question in the past. I mean, I understand that he‘s in a very different political reality than Patrick Leahy. He has a national constituency and Patrick Leahy represents Vermont.

And so he has to placate both sides of this argument and it‘s a contentious one. That said, he didn‘t exactly answer the question whether he supports a commission nor did he exactly answer the question as to whether he would rule out prosecution there and now. And so I would like to see him take a more firm stance one way or another.

MADDOW: I know that you have followed up since with Sen. Leahy. One thing that the president did do in response to your question is that he promised to look at Sen. Leahy‘s proposal.

Has there been an act of furtherance? Has this gone any further since Leahy initially proposed it and you asked about it?

STEIN: Well, yes. I talked to Sen. Leahy the day after. And he said to me that he had been in conversations with Greg Craig, which is Obama‘s chief counsel. He said the conversations were preliminary and that they were going to go on word from there.

But I think it‘s an indication that the White House knows that this is going to happen. I mean, one thing Patrick Leahy said is that he doesn‘t need Obama‘s OK to go forward with this. He‘s been in the Senate for 35 years. He is his own boss and he can do what he wants.

And the same thing goes to Rep. John Conyers in the House who‘s introduced legislation about this. So you have two actors who are going ahead without Obama, regardless. So Obama is going to have to figure out how to play with these senators and representatives even if he doesn‘t even want the investigations to occur.

MADDOW: It seems like the big question about whether or not this will actually happen is - it‘s all about whether or not somebody finds a politically possible way for it to happen. And my sense, just reporting on this from here, is that the most politically possible way for this to happen is for it to happen independently of the administration, at least nominally, for it to be initiated in Congress and largely pursued through Congress. Is that how you see it?

STEIN: Yes, I think that‘s actually how it‘s going to take place. Now, one of the aspects of Obama‘s answer that stuck out to me was that he said if we find illegality, we will prosecute, and regardless if you‘re an order citizen or member of the administration.

So theoretically, if Congress under John Conyers‘ investigation or Patrick Leahy‘s can produce evidence of illegality, then Obama has committed himself and his Department of Justice to prosecuting it.

So I think what you will see out is Congress providing the evidence and the Obama administration being in an unfortunate or sort of difficult circumstance of actually having to act on it. So I think that‘s what you‘re going to see going forward.

MADDOW: One thing that I sort of prized out of Sen. Leahy when I interviewed him after his proposal was people who did not testify before such a truth commission would be totally open to prosecution, that the only way you could get immunity from any prosecution would be to sit down before this commission and say the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

STEIN: Yes.

MADDOW: Do you see that as a threat toward people who might not be willing to act all contrite and sit down before a commission?

STEIN: Sure. I mean, of course. You either want immunity or you want to be, you know, a powerful subject of an investigation. There is a flip side, of course.

I already heard some grumbling among the more progressive readers of the “Huffington Post,” as well as some sources that they don‘t want too much immunity provided. There are a lot of people who they want to see investigated. And there are a lot of people who they think should be prosecuted.

There‘s no judgment call one way or another. But they‘re worried that if you provide too much immunity, you‘re going to miss holding responsible some of the key actors.

MADDOW: “Huffington Post” reporter Sam Stein, you‘ve had a very big week. Thanks from making time in it for us. Appreciate it, Sam.

STEIN: Oh, thank you very much.


Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Feb, 2009 06:04 pm
@Butrflynet,
I think either the Congressional investigations or a call for an independent investigation needs to be done. Depending on the results of either of those, then judicial actions should be made.

However, I'd also like to see some emphasis on law making that will prevent anything like this from ever happening again in the future, no matter who is the president or what party is in power.

I think it would be a more constructive focus since the Republicans are as fearful of what the President Obama administration might do in the future as Democrats are of what the President Bush administration has done in the past.

Both the investigations of the past and lawmaking for the future need to happen concurrently.

Not sure that can be done at the moment though because of the extraordinary powers the administration may need to get the country through this long-term economic crisis. Maybe the possibility frightens enough Republicans that they'd be willing to sacrifice some of the players in the Bush Administration to keep the balance of power in check between the three branches.
0 Replies
 
mysteryman
 
  0  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 10:14 am
@JTT,
Quote:
You have a recent president and a vp, both thankfully gone now, who are, by their own admission, war criminals and felons, and there is virtually nothing raised here.


Before I answer your post, would you be so kind as to post evidence that they admitted to being war criminals.
Perhaps you could provide their actual statements, the context those statements were made in, and any other info that proves your claim.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 10:27 am


I think the worst move the Obama administration could possibly make right now...is to start up a witch hunt.

I understand the feelings of the people agitating for such a hunt...but I hope with all my might that Obama resists the temptation.

If the voters of the United States are such jerkoffs that they put people like Bush in office again in the future...then the other countries of the world whose citizens are here questioning our resolve and ethics...ought to get off their ******* lazy, sycophantic asses and do something about us.

An excellent case can be made that the truly culpable entities in the whole mess being discussed here...are the leaders of the countries that kissed Bush's ass during all this...that lent credence and viability to the “coalition.”

To the non-Americans here, I say: Take some responsibility...then point fingers.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 01:12 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Quote:
.then the other countries of the world whose citizens are here questioning our resolve and ethics...ought to get off their ******* lazy, sycophantic asses and do something about us.


Quote:
To the non-Americans here, I say: Take some responsibility...then point fingers.


To be sure, there are other countries and leaders who should be held to account, but the main perpetrators of these lies are clearly to be found within the US political system.

I agree, witch hunts are not a good idea. But if a country which deems itself one that respects the rule of law cannot mount an independent legal investigation, really, what kind of a country is it?

And the appeal to, "there are other bad guys out there", is really lame, bordering on immoral.

0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 03:08 pm
I believe Bush and many of his buddies are outright criminals, but that the kind of political war and time consuming distractions these prosecutions would engender is not worth it to the well being of our nation. We have too much recovering to do to waste our capital on these bozos.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 03:28 pm
@edgarblythe,
With respect to these legal issues, they never should become political, Edgar. What you suggest means that there are major major holes in the American political/legal system. That's not good for any real democratic country.

Don't you think that this is about much more than the well being of the USA? Justice can't be swept aside simply because times are tough.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 03:31 pm
I think about half of the public would call it a witch hunt and we would waste too much dwindling capital fighting a virtual civil war.
mysteryman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 03:32 pm
@JTT,
You still havent posted any statements from Bush where he "admitted" to being a war criminal.
You claimed he did, so please post the statement, along with a link to that statement.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 03:40 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Quote:
I think the worst move the Obama administration could possibly make right now...is to start up a witch hunt.


What you might call a "witch hunt", Frank, can also be seen in an entirely different light. Like officially coming clean with the American people (say nothing of the rest of the world) about war crimes which were carried out by the Bush administration & its allies. To my way of thinking, real change cannot occur until there's some proper acknowledgement & responsibility taken for the policies & actions of the US administration under Bush. Glossing over the facts & "moving on" does a serious disservice to the unfortunate victims of "the war against terror", say nothing of ensuring (& perhaps I'm being overly optimistic here) that such abominations do not occur again. I can undertand your thinking from a US political perspective. The Obama admistration has huge challenges to address. But, to my mind, the seriousness of the Bush administration's actions need to be acknowledged & absolutely should be.
This is about far bigger issues than internal US politics.


0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Feb, 2009 03:47 pm
@edgarblythe,
Half of that same public voted for GWB, Edgar. The rule of law doesn't, can't, pander to ignorance. If it did, it would cease to be the rule of law.
0 Replies
 
 

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