« Question | Main | A Wonderful Start »

January 04, 2007

Comments

i'm giddy with anticipation, thinking of how the die-hard Bush supporters are going to try to justify this.

I'm going to pass. The power of declaration...well, let me try it out: I am the God of Hellfire!

Drat. So much for declaration.

No, I am the God of Hellfire - and I bring you fire.

I Am the God of the Dead, and I bring you Fire On The Mountain.

cleek, don't give me that newfangled crap.

Sen. Leahy was ahead of the curve on this at the wiretapping hearings last year. He demanded to know whether AG Gonzales thought the government had the power to open people's mail without a warrant, but the AG refused to answer since, obviously, it's just a silly hypothetical.

...or I'll...I'll...

Steve's last comment is worth a transcript quote


And the Supreme Court -- Justice O'Connor said -- even though the words were not included in the authorization, Justice O'Connor said: Congress clearly and unmistakably authorized the president to detain an American citizen. And detention is far more intrusive than electronic surveillance.

SPECTER: Well, then, let me ask you this.

Under your interpretation of this, can you go in and do mail searches? Can you go into e-mails? Can you open mail? Can you do black-bag jobs?

And under the idea that you don't have much time to go through what you described as a cumbersome procedure, what most people think is a pretty easy procedure, to get a FISA warrant, can you go and do that of Americans?

GONZALES: Sir, I've tried to outline for you and the committee what the president has authorized, and that is all that he has authorized.

LEAHY: Did it authorize the opening of first-class mail of U.S. citizens? That you can answer yes or no.

GONZALES: There is all kinds of wild speculation about...

LEAHY: Did it authorize it?

SPECTER: Let him finish.

GONZALES: There is all kinds of wild speculation out there about what the president has authorized and what we're actually doing. And I'm not going to get into a discussion, Senator, about...

LEAHY: Mr. Attorney General, you're not answering my question. I'm not asking you what the president authorized.

Does this law -- you're the chief law enforcement officer of the country -- does this law authorize the opening of first-class mail of U.S. citizens, yes or no, under your interpretation?

GONZALES: Senator, I think that, again, that is not what is going on here.

We're only focused on international communications where one part of the communication is Al Qaida. That's what this program is all about.

LEAHY: You haven't answered my question .

Well, Mr. Chairman, I'll come back to this. And the attorney general understands there's some dates he's going to check during the break, and I'll go back to them.

SPECTER: Thank you, Senator Leahy.
link

The God of the Dead is sad that his link didn't work. this one will.

--

Gonzalez needs to be arrested.

Gonzalez' DoJ -- lawlessness mouthing the language of law to conceal and justify lawlessness.

There is going to be a constitutional crisis in the next two years in which the context of the fight is going to be the Bush administration's refusal to comply with basic oversight. The defense is going to be that Congress (i.e., Dems) cannot be trusted to look at the crown jewels and therefore defiance of Congress is necessary for national security. Cheney in particular is probably spoiling for such a fight.

It is the Nixon perversion in the extreme being led my men who experienced it and intend to reverse the outcome in the next such fight. And I once thought John Dean was a little batty when he wrote Worse Than Watergate -- that man is starting to like like a seer. Republicans are going to have to choose between the authoritiarian cult wing of their party now in control and its rational remnants (there must be some since they are posting at this site!).

Bring it on, I say.

"look like a seer" -- arggh.

OT: Check out the main graphic at Bizarro World.

Thanks for the link, Spartikus.

I miss the days when I could read a blog post from Moe without feeling such extreme disappointment in him, though...

I don't want to hijack the thread any further but it's always worth noting:

GOP Senators and Congressman write or have pieces written in their name on Redstate.

Redstate editors appear on CNN

Good lord, what would the equivalent be? A swastika over an image of an internment camp?

Check out the main graphic at Bizarro World.

What is the difference between using communist imagery to mock Democrats and using Nazi imagery to mock Republicans?

Of course, try to make that observation at Bizarro World without being banned. And it is worth noting that Bizarro World's banning policy does show them to be authoritiarian creeps (but not Nazis!).

And oh the hypocritical irony of it all -- MoveOn removes from its website an unsanctioned video posted in an open contest that uses Nazi imagery to mock Bush, and is pilloried by the right as allegedly sanctioning Nazi imagery. The flagship website for the right then deliberately uses communist imagery against Dems as if its appropriate.

And to bring this OT theme somewhat back to the subject, note that Moe cites with approval Norquist's admonition for the Republicans to engage in a scorched earth defense over the next two years. Puts in context the ninniness of the MSM junk about "bipartisanship," and also reinforces the notion that there will be a giant fight in the next two years about Bush's lawlessness. The Republicans want it -- Bush's defiance is their primary forum for that fight.

Bring it on.

Moe Lane sez:

You will now apologize to the group for underestimating our intelligence and for attempting to cause trouble, and pledge that you will be more respectful in the future. I suggest that you use precisely those words; trying to be quote-unquote 'creative' on this is contraindicated.
Am I the only one who finds it ironic he posted this comment on a thread that outright red-baits the Democractic Congressional majority?

(PS using The Director's own dubious formula, Republicans + Fascism = The White House.)

The flagship website for the right

Hmmm...something odd about that statement, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

Putting that aside, they don't represent me. I did click on the Ann Coulter link, and another click or two I was amused to discover that Coulter is somebody's "legal correspondent". Which led me to ponder when the last time Coulter corresponded on the law.

And then I discovered I didn't care much what the answer was, and closed that window.

and now poor Mr Lucifer Cornblossom can no longer see RedState at all.

i'd go petition Mr Lane on his behalf, but i was previously banned because Mr Lane is unable to read and understand simple English... much the same way Mr Cornblossom was banned.

knowing the amount of pure unhinged insanity and malice that sits on the other side of those eight red letters, it's awfully big of ObWi to keep that RedState link there on the left. i'd have taken it down years ago. but, i guess it speaks to the overall desire to keep things bi-partisan here.

so, to you, ObWi, i offer astonished kudos.

Im n ur Post Office reedin ur mail.

Cheney in particular is probably spoiling for such a fight.

Yep.

But thanks to their gross incompetence -- sadly, not to any great jealousy of our freedoms, just the fact that Americans don't like other Americans dying in bungled wars -- public opinion has now soundly turned against the effete tyrant-wannabes. The Supreme Court may be getting corrupt, but it's not so far gone as to stand for brazen flouting of the Constitution, I don't think.

The scary thing is, if this gang really had had a clue how to get out of Iraq quickly, we'd be to proto-fascism now, and the American people would say, "Mmmmmmm.... OK. As long as you just keep us safe, Duce!"

Let me see, Norquist/Moe exult in a stragy of lose-to-win;and I recommend a strategy of lose-to-win. Both built on a pessimism about comity and actual loathing of bi-partisanship in present circumstances. Se everybody's gonna lose, unless one side can effectively spin it.

This isn't politics. It's war.

This is basically naval gazing and of no informative value, but I wonder what the deal is with Moe. He always seemed like such a nice boy. Normally, the sorts of conservatives who think Democrats are functionally Communists and who think turning Baghdad into Mogadishu was a rad idea are pretty apparent and pretty impossible to engage rationally, so I simply assumed Moe wasn't that sort. Of course, if he was that sort, that kind of explains his building frustration and eventual total inability to deal with the commentariat here, and the move to the obviously more welcoming confines of TwoMinutesHate.com.

but I wonder what the deal is with Moe

i've tried many times to answer, but i just can't seem to do it without profanities.

see you all at the big Politburo meeting tonight!

naval gazing

Objection: requires a sailor.

I like to think Moe Lane's soul went into John Cole -- that way it didn't die in vain.

I had no idea Bernie Sanders killed so many South Vietnamese.

If you think we've got it bad, have a look at the Iraqi citizens in these videos (see link)...It does suck living in a dictatorship, doesn't it??
http://minor-ripper.blogspot.com/2006/12/winning-hearts-and-minds-part-three.html

Putting that aside, they don't represent me.

Same here. I think I must have missed out on the heyday of RedState, because somehow I lamentably got the impression that it was an intelligent mirror image of Kos. All I've ever found it to be is a paranoid shrine to Republicans -- Free Republic dressed up in a suit.

It's still lonely being conservative and principled, or at least conservative and with a single grain of sense. At least Andrew Sullivan is no longer the only conservative blog I can bear to read, but there still aren't many.

Free Republic dressed up in a suit.

A clown suit.

Put me on the list of wondering what happened to Moe. My association with him goes back to long before ObWi, or even political blogging as a phenomenon. It was on the In Nomine mailing list through Steve Jackson Games. He always had some interesting, if pretty crocked, ideas.

Katherine: I guess you missed the subtle reference to the "Democrat-Socialist Alliance" in RedState's idiotic graphic: it's "Socialist" - singular - (and Bernie Sanders, is, AFAIK, fairly singular - even if he probably would, in Europe, be considered rightist). Typical for RedState: technically correct: but still

AAACK!!! Devoured comment!!!

...still buffoonishly extremist. They may have started out to be the "mirror image of dKos": but have ended up a microdot version instead: "all the partisanship - .01% the readership!".

Oh, and EOC: RedState's "heyday" was about their first three months: no suprise it's been "missed"!

I got a nice note from Moe on my engagement a couple of years back, certainly a partisan period. Still not at all ready to believe his soul is dead. Call me naive.

I noticed the singular (and the reference to Sanders) after posting.

How clever. Cookies all 'round.

If association with Sanders is equivalent to Socialist appeasement (*snicker*), I wonder what Red State thinks about all those House Republicans who used to co-sponsor legislation with Sanders...

(And what's with the neverending wingnut 'Nam obsession? America lost, long before the fall of Saigon - deal with it.)

Hmm, I wonder if my password at RedState is still good.

>And the Supreme Court -- Justice O'Connor said -- even though the words were not included in the authorization, Justice O'Connor said: Congress clearly and unmistakably authorized the president to detain an American citizen.

Ladies and Gentleman, O'Conner is in idiot.

Nothing can be "clearly and unmistakably" authorized without words.

That's the purpose of words: To clear up any mistaken thoughts and concepts.

If there are no words for authorization, then there is NO authorization.

Intend is NOT authorization.

It sounds like no one in the Bush Administration cares about the meaning of words except on a minute to changing minute definitions; including O'Conner.

Words that change meaning or have no common basis in meaning are useless for law; you can not have a society based on shifting word defintions in short time periods.

Bush has broken Federal Law. Plain, Pure, and simple.

Now. What are you doing to do about it?

Of course posting there would bring on more scorn than a bad day here.

Which I would take comfort in if it weren't for the fact that I'm aware that having trouble with both sides is no indication of being correct.

God, you're full of crap.

first of all, since RS was created based on the idea of a mirror-image of how a conservative percieves dKos, it's no surprise that they only got the structure and the partisanship.

second of all: when dKos started, Dems were in a solid minority position, and there was a kind of revolutionary spirit in the idea of using the internet to organize partisan liberals to fight the seemingly-unstoppable Republican political and noise machines. dKos was one of the early big blogs even before it went to the fancy threaded format with diaries and conventions, etc..

but when RS started, there were already a zillion conservative blogs, and the Republicans didn't appear to need any kind of revolutionary help. it was just another conservative circle-jerk, supporting the party in power against the party that looked like it was going to disappear forever. yay!

dKos organically filled a need. RS was an attempt to duplicate dKos in a culture that didn't need it.

and the simple fact that RS is obsessively manicured to maintain a strict monoculture doesn't help, either. look at Drum's comments, for example: he can get 200 or 300 comments per post there because there's essentially no moderation - people can argue about anything they like. Atrios typically gets 400 or higher. that freewheeling chaos attracts people who want to argue, because they know they can, without fear of "Blamming" from some over-zealous dillweed. i don't know if dKos bans people or not. but i know they don't disallow trolling or dissent. sure, that means you don't get the quality of discussion you get here (for example), but it also means you don't get thousands of regulars who would love to donate to the political candiates you feature.

ya reap what ya sow.

if Moe wants a fncking bonzai tree, he's never going to grow a forest of pines.

sorry. i really hate that last analogy of mine - not least of all because "pines' is an ugly word.

...but it also means you don't get...

...but it also means you don't get...

sorry. i'll go do something else now.

As an anecdote to Red State,go read John Cole. He's on a roll.

it's "Socialist" - singular

As of right now its "Socialists" - plural.

dKos is a political site more than an ideological site. The distinction is subtle but real. Yes, Democrats are mostly liberal on most issues, but within the Democratic Party there's a lot of variation on how liberal, and on which issues.

RS started out with a narrower focus: ideological conservativism. Then it narrowed the focus even more: ideological conservatism as defined by "The Base." As The Base shrank to the more extremist elements, so did ideological conservatism, and so did RS. Along the way, it banned everyone who didn't agree with the ever-tightening circle of allowed commentary.

What's odd is that RS has pretty much died even though other RW sites which are even whackier haven't. SFAIK, Malkin and JOM and LGF still have lots of traffic. But none of them (again, SFAIK) are really ideological or political sites. Malkin seems to have cornered the market on paranoia in general and racist paranoia in particular, JOM is the go-to spot for conspiracy nuts, and LGF is for the scatological illiterati who find Malkin and JOM too high-minded.

I broke the italics again. Apologies!

As an anecdote to Red State,go read John Cole. He's on a roll.

If memory serves he was an editor at RS before Teh Gay (or whatever it is that allegedly turned him librul)

gah. (Ending Italics)

Okay, great bloggy powers, a little help here...

Oh, and EOC: RedState's "heyday" was about their first three months: no suprise it's been "missed"!
Yeah... But they use Drupal, the same backend content management system that the Dean campaign used. Somewhere, in the land of GPL software, there's a common ground for us all. ;-)

(My secret fanboy dream is still to help port ObWi to Drupal, too.)

If Captain Jamil Hussein is...

1. Arrested.
2. Tortured.
3. Executed.

Do the right-wing bloggers who invented pushed this story bear any sort of responsibility?

(My secret fanboy dream is still to help port ObWi to Rails....)

Modified to be applicable to me.

Though if you're going to use a PHP-based meta-CMS, Drupal's probably the one to use.

Do the right-wing bloggers who invented pushed this story bear any sort of responsibility?

after they turn him into a "terrorist", sure they'll take responsibility.

if that fails, and it turns out he was indisputably correct, well, they'll just blame the media for making them not believe the media.

I really want a bonzai tree.

Ok, that's really neither here nor there.

they'll just blame the media for making them not believe the media.

You've been doing this too long, cleek. "Allahpundit" writes...

And while I have more faith now in the AP, I have less faith in the certainty of any information I get from Iraq.

Shorter Allahpundit: Heads, I win. Tales, I win.

I really want a bonzai tree.

Would you settle for a bonsai commenter? I'm there's someone we can prune to your satisfaction...

Do the right-wing bloggers who invented pushed this story bear any sort of responsibility?

Does the AP, who has been citing this guy by name for months now, bear any sort of responsibility?

Does Jamil Hussein bear any responsibility at all for pointing out the four or five mosques that had purportedly been firebombed, or to corroborate the stories of men being dragged from houses, doused with kerosene and set alight?

Tune in next week, I guess, for the next round of rhetorical questions.

naval gazing

Objection: requires a sailor.

Overruled. You assume we are sans-sailor.

Does the AP, who has been citing this guy by name for months now, bear any sort of responsibility?

I assumed that Jamil Hussein was an assumed name to avoid the issues of talking to the media, actually. Which was why I assumed he couldn't be found.

Does Jamil Hussein bear any responsibility at all for pointing out the four or five mosques that had purportedly been firebombed, or to corroborate the stories of men being dragged from houses, doused with kerosene and set alight?

Ah, it's been a long time since I heard you talking like a wingnut, Slarti. To answer your questions wingnut fashion - he's an Iraqi and he's saying that everything in Iraq isn't just fine, so he's lying, so none of the above happened. Let's go look at some freshly painted schools, shall we?

You've been doing this too long, cleek

that is probably true. and, i should probably stop.

Does the AP, who has been citing this guy by name for months now, bear any sort of responsibility?

sorry, you'll have to get in line. everybody who's waiting for the MSM to own up to Whitewater and the Goring of Al Gore in 2000 was here first.

he's an Iraqi and he's saying that everything in Iraq isn't just fine, so he's lying, so none of the above happened

Wow, another stunningly incorrect extrapolation from Jesurgislac. Knock me over with a feather.

Slarti: Wow, another stunningly incorrect extrapolation from Jesurgislac. Knock me over with a feather.

A correct extrapolation from the assumption rested on by the leading questions you were asking.

Quite possibly an incorrect extrapolation of what you actually think, but if you can't be bothered to let us know what you actually think, why complain so much when people react to what you actually wrote?

Well.

About Hussein: I assume, in general, that people in the middle of a war zone sometimes get things wrong. This includes police officers talking about how many mosques have been burnt: since normally no single police officer will have been at all four or five locations, in the early stages many of them will be talking on the basis of stuff they have heard, and even if you try to restrict yourself to things you've heard that seem reliable, it's natural, in a situation of massive confusion, for you to get things wrong.

Likewise, it applies to things like centralized lists of names of police officers: one of the things I absolutely do not expect of the Iraqi government is a really good searchable personnel system. (See earlier debate about Lancet article and death certificates.)

I was, therefore, baffled by the earlier brouhaha over this. I thought: there's no reason to think AP doesn't have a perfectly good source on this. There's also no reason to infer from the fact that the US military has no knowledge of that source that he doesn't exist. No reason, that is, other than the peculiar lingering effects of the Rather episode, which seem to give a certain segment of the Right blogosphere the idea that the media is always lying, and that they can expose these lies using only their computers and their wits. I mean: if you think about it for a moment, there are many, many possible explanations for AP claiming a source that the military (and even the Iraqi central government) couldn't find a record for, and not all of them involve AP, or anyone, doing anything wrong.

I don't hold Malkin et al responsible for the guy's arrest, if he is arrested. It seems likely to me that he wouldn't have been noticed by the central government, much less placed on an arrest list, without their obsessive attention, but I don't think they had any way of knowing that.

I do fault them for being silly.

A correct extrapolation from the assumption rested on by the leading questions you were asking.

If by "correct" you mean "incorrect", I agree.

Otherwise, no. I find it odd that you consistently conclude that I mean things that I don't, and yet repeatedly maintain that such conclusions were logical.

"I really want a bonzai tree."

They really aren't as hard to keep alive as people think. I have a black thumb, but by leaving it in the bathroom for the steam and putting it out into direct sunlight once a week I kept one alive for two years--until one time when I had put it out for sun it got hit by a bike in the common space in front of my apartment.

(I have no idea what a bike rider was doing there. But one day I came home and saw a long tire track ending at my bonzai tree.)

Willing to be incorrect on this , but I don't think the burned Sunnis and mosque story has been disproved.

One of the key paragraphs from my cite above:

Hussein was not the original source of the disputed report of the attack; the account was first told on Al-Arabiya satellite television by a Sunni elder, Imad al-Hashimi, who retracted it after members of the Defense Ministry paid him a visit. Several neighborhood residents subsequently gave the AP independent accounts of the Shiite militia attack on a mosque in which six people were set on fire and killed.

Just for the record, I would probably retract my entire existence after "a visit from the Defense Ministry".

As for responsibility, the lion's share will of course belong to whoever beats or power drills Captain Hussein. But ignorance that this could be the end result doesn't strike me as an out for the Malkins and Flopping Aces. If not for their actions, Hussein would not be potentially facing this scenario. It would be nice if they would reflect on that, but yeah, here's hoping.

it's kindof ironic that the hysterical desire of Malkin et al to prove that things in Iraq aren't as bad as we hear might just demonstrate one way in which things are worse. their desire to find the guy who's telling stories they don't want to believe might result in that guy being arrested (or worse) for talking to reporters at all.

good job, Michelle!

Yeah, I'm not sure why Hilzoy is letting them off the hook, unless she's allowing a plea of diminished capacity.

I don't read Malkin, but the places I do read are all saying something like: things in Iraq are bad enough; what need is there to manufacture more?

I meant: I don't see that they had any reason to think that what they were doing would get the guy arrested, so I don't hold them responsible for that. If I'm wrong, and there was some reason to think that, I retract it.

As I said, I do hold them accountable for being silly. The fact that Michelle Malkin cannot locate someone in Iraq from here does not imply that that person doesn't exist, or even that there's any reason at all to think that that person doesn't exist. I take the whole "ooooh, there's a scandal lurking here!!!" business to indicate deep ignorance of what war is like.

I think the source of the disbelief was that the AP itself couldn't find the guy. Or reported that it couldn't, which might be a different thing.

Er, AP could find the guy and repeatedly said so. And the story regarding burned mosques, etc, was not "manufactured". There are, in addition to Hussein, several witnesses and the ones doing the disputing - the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior - could very well be complicit in the crime and have motive to deny this story beyond "things are great in Iraq".

Ah, I recall now: CENTCOM stated that no such person worked for the Iraqi police.

Still no word on why they said that.

As for the mosques, where are the other four? As far as I can tell, no one has yet found them.

Slarti: If by "correct" you mean "incorrect", I agree.

Well, you wouldn't you? I'll chalk this one off to Slarti attempting to screw the unscrutable again, then complaining when misunderstood. As happens so often.

I don't see that they had any reason to think that what they were doing would get the guy arrested

I'm not so sure they were oblivious. I mean, they were emailing Centcom to poke around and place inquiries with the Iraqi government and such, and surely anyone would know this would have repercussions in Iraq. Oh, I'm sure they believed their own hype and thought "for sure Hussein is an insurgent".

Though the evidence at hand doesn't currently support it, it may be that Hussein is in fact an insurgent sympathiser inventing stories. It also may be he was just a cop doing his job and told the truth as best he could.

he fact that Michelle Malkin cannot locate someone in Iraq from here does not imply that that person doesn't exist, or even that there's any reason at all to think that that person doesn't exist.

Hmph. It's part of my job to find people HERE in the US, using resources available here, and it's quite common that I can't find 'em. I'm pretty sure they exist, given that we get donations from them regularly...

Oh, come on, gwangung. This is a new era. Anyone or anything that can't be found in a few minutes of googling doesn't exist.

Richard Blair has a good recount and analysis of the Jamil Hussein story, and Michelle Malkin writes a letter to Mowaffak al-Rubaie

Another AP employee was found dead this morning, shot in the back of the head on his way to work. Over ninety journalists have died in Iraq so far.

I do not believe that the curious investigators of Jamil Hussein should escape some moral responsbility if the man is hurt by being publicly identified. For that matter, I do not understand why anyone in Iraq felt it necessary to gratify these random bloggers' curiosity. We're well past the point where one mosque or one atrocity makes the difference in determining whether this war is terrible.

Oh, come on, gwangung. This is a new era. Anyone or anything that can't be found in a few minutes of googling doesn't exist.

That's not something I'd say to my bosses. At least, if I want to keep my job...

Of course, I guess something that sloppy is perfectly fine with a lot of wingnuts...

Over at Bizarro World, Unbowed and unrepentent.

From the comments:

The question now is: Does Jamil Hussein exist? I will not take the word of the AP and the Iraqi MOI. Period.

Jamil Hussein could probably walk up to him and pinch him on the ass and the commenter in question would still have doubts.

I do not believe that the curious investigators of Jamil Hussein should escape some moral responsbility if the man is hurt by being publicly identified.

Interesting. He's been publicly identified for some months now, but only now is he in danger.

Jamil (Jamail, Jamayl...) Hussein (Husseyn, Husseyne) is a pretty common name.

Interesting. He's been publicly identified for some months now, but only now is he in danger.

If Hussein's level of risk were a boolean condition with only two possible values, then that would indeed be interesting, because it would suggest some other determinant besides having been publicly identified. In practice however, his level of risk is a point value along an extensive and continuous spectrum, so it's not clear to me what's so interesting about the possibility that it would increase proportional to his level of public visibility. YMMV, obviously.

Disclaimer: this should not be interpreted as a blanket endorsement of "security through obscurity."

If Hussein's level of risk were a boolean condition with only two possible values, then that would indeed be interesting, because it would suggest some other determinant besides having been publicly identified.

i always assumed the simple fact that he is wanted for arrest (or now under arrest?) is what puts him in danger.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Blog powered by Typepad