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View Diary: Morning Feature: Conservatism - The Rubble and the Rabble, Part I (158 comments)

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  •  Why, Oh Why, must Obama (11+ / 0-)

    run such vigorous inteference for Bush and his litany of crimes?

    This is truly nauseating.

    Uncalled for.

    Criminal.

    Wrong.

    America is about to learn that marijuana should never have been made illegal. @xxdr_zombiexx

    by xxdr zombiexx on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 04:33:39 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I'm not getting it either (14+ / 0-)

      and watching it unfold has been like falling down a rabbit hole.

      It's especially upsetting given that it means not only does it seem BushCo's "interpretation" of the Constitution is going to be left to stand as a precedent for any would-be dictator in the future, but that America is failing to uphold agreements we've made with other nations over the use of torture.

      "The time for justice is always right now!" - Samantha Booke, Wiley College debate team, 1935

      by Edgewater on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 04:47:49 AM PDT

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      •  His sell-out on FISA was a giveaway (13+ / 0-)

        and we were encouraged to overlook it.

        America is about to learn that marijuana should never have been made illegal. @xxdr_zombiexx

        by xxdr zombiexx on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 05:00:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's my opinion... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          NCrissieB, kktlaw, FarWestGirl

          that Obama is picking his fights. Not that it doesn't stick in my throat...

          He will win the fight on health care.

          He will regulate Wall Street.

          He is restoring sanity to foreign policy.

          Those things will reward us with the 2012 election. Obama is a political animal and understands what will benefit American citizens the most. That's where he'll spend his political capital.

          He's only been in office a few months, and often we're guilty of expecting him to do what we want now. The torture issue will be aired, I'm 100% sure of this, and those responsible will be made known but Obama won't do it at the expense of health care reform, nor should he.

          "Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric." Bertrand Russell

          by Tom Enever on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 08:19:53 AM PDT

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          •  obama is protecting Bush. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            NCrissieB, kktlaw

            It cannot be reduced or explained away however euphoric one is about him (Obama, that is)

            America is about to learn that marijuana should never have been made illegal. @xxdr_zombiexx

            by xxdr zombiexx on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 10:07:03 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Or Obama thinks Bush was right on this issue. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kktlaw

              I offered that hypothesis below.  It's possible Obama believes Bush's surveillance plan was the right thing to do, even if he thinks Bush broke the law by doing it without first getting authorization from Congress, and now he doesn't want to "throw the baby out with the bathwater."

              The specific acts the DOJ defended yesterday were authorized under the new FISA law, and it may be that Obama disagrees with us about whether that law should be as it is.  He is not as progressive as a lot of us and this may be a point of real policy disagreement.  He may think mass surveillance of Americans under the new FISA law, is a good thing or at least a necessary and legal evil.

    •  The battle for the rule of law continues (4+ / 0-)

      Now we have the Obama DOJ pushing the unitary executive meme, sounding just like the Bush DOJ.  In response to action by Electronic Frontier Foundation to seek damages against the government under FISA, for illegally spying on American citizens, the Obama DOJ responded with Bushspeak and claims that amount to unlimited executve authority.  According to Glenn Greenwald at Salon.com:
      "(It is) difficult to overstate is how identical the Obama DOJ now is to the Bush DOJ when it comes to its claims of executive secrecy ... I defy anyone to read the Obama DOJ's brief here and identify even a single difference between what it says and what the Bush DOJ routinely said in the era of Cheney/Addington ...  Even for those most cynical about what Obama was likely to do or not do in the civil liberties realm, reading this brief from the Obama DOJ is so striking -- and more than a little depressing -- given how indistinguishable it is from everything that poured out of the Bush DOJ regarding secrecy powers in order to evade all legal accountability."
      We had an election in this country to bring change and transparency.  There are frightening signs that this is not happening.  I think we uncorked the champagne bottles too soon.

      One cannot deny the humanity of another without diminishing one's own. James Baldwin

      by CarolynC967 on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 05:24:10 AM PDT

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      •  The debate certainly continues. (7+ / 0-)

        I stop short of calling it a "battle" because that invokes the kind of violent metaphor I'm trying to be more careful about, but the debate for the rule of law very definitely continues.  Any who thought that debate closed on November 5, 2008, or on January 20, 2009, should now harbor no such illusions.

        Good morning! ::huggggggggggggs::

        •  "harbor no such illusions" (5+ / 0-)

          But each of us, from the right, the left and the center has a pet illusion. Part of the democratic process may be the selling of illusion as much as it is the positing of a political framework of beliefs.

          •  On "pet illusions." (5+ / 0-)

            I agree.  We all have our pet illusions, sometimes because the alternative is unacceptable.  For example, I say that I believe in public debate because it forces us to examine our opinions, and to modify them if we can't defend them.  That is a pet illusion.

            The reality is that few adults modify their political opinions.  They seek "debate" with people who agree, try to shout down or ignore those with whom they disagree, accept untruths that support their beliefs, ignore facts that contradict their beliefs, and do almost anything they can to avoid having to change those beliefs.  And not just conservatives.

            So majority opinion changes because conditions change and a younger generation adopts a different opinion in response to those changes, while the rest of us eventually die off and take our mistaken opinions to our graves with us.  That's the reality.

            But using that reality - rather than my pet illusion of debate - as the basis for government has some really ugly implications.  So I cling to my pet illusion because I think at least acting as if it's true is better than the alternative.

            Good morning! ::huggggggggggggggs::

      •  What I am hoping about the Obama DOJ (7+ / 0-)

        is that they took the same position as the Bush DOJ so the courts can slap it down.  Because if the courts slap it down, then without so much as a filibuster in congress, the issue becomes settled law.

        If I'm wrong (and I may be) I'm going to be one very disappointed Obama supporter.

        The austerity you see around you covers the richness of life like a veil -- Anonymous

        by winterbanyan on Wed Apr 08, 2009 at 06:13:47 AM PDT

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      •  here's my theory (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NCrissieB

        I think the Obama administration is going to let bygones be bygones. They're going to let the Bush administration get away with what they did. I think the way they're going about it is wrong, though. I think Obama should just use his pardon power. That's what it's there for. If that's what he thinks should be done, he should take the political hit for using the pardon power, too.

        Other than my objection to the method, I can't say I disagree with the policy. It's like Ford pardoning Nixon. I think it would put this country through agony to prosecute all of these various and sundry offenses, and be terribly divisive, all at a time when we need to be pulling together and looking forward because of the economic crisis.

        •  You may be right. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cowalker, elmo, kktlaw, FarWestGirl

          Alternatively, President Obama may sincerely believe that the Bush wiretapping plan was the right thing to do, even if Bush violated the law by not getting congressional approval before beginning it.  And now he doesn't want the baby thrown out with the bathwater.

          Either way, President Obama should confront the issue plainly and personally, and tell the American people whether he thinks that surveillance plan was right, and if so why, and if not why he won't tell the DOJ to step back and let the cases go to trial.  He ran on a platform and practice of being honest with us, and crediting us for enough intelligence to handle an honest, adult debate on the issues.  So let him bring his case to us, and let us debate it with him.

          Good morning! ::huggggggggggggs::

          •  Here's my theory (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            NCrissieB, kktlaw

            Obama is going to cover up everything to do with FISA because Democrats broke the law too.

            The worst feature of this is that Obama is kicking the strengthened unitary executive power can down the road where it may well be picked up by another president like Bush. It's pretty damn cynical on Obama's part.

            •  First, the Democrats weren't in power. (4+ / 0-)

              The decision to begin wiretapping without warrants and without congressional authorization was made by the Bush Administration.  They may have briefed some congressional Democrats on the plan, and those Democrats may not have publicly exposed and objected to the plan, but that doesn't make those Democrats civilly or criminally liable ... because they had no legal duty to publicly expose and object to the plan.

              You can argue those Democrats had a moral and civic duty to publicly expose and object to the wiretapping plan, and I would agree with you.  But a moral and civic duty is not necessarily a legal duty, and civil and criminal liability attach only to violations of a legal duty.

              Democrats who went along with the plan or kept their objections private did not "break the law," because the law doesn't require them to go public with those objections.

              Good morning! ::huggggggggggggs::

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