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U.S. Can Detain Padilla Indefinitely
September 9, 2005 1:48 PM   Subscribe

U.S. Can Detain Padilla Indefinitely. President George W. Bush was handed a major victory on Friday in his effort to assert sweeping presidential powers in the war on terrorism as a US appeals court upheld his authority to imprison indefinitely a US citizen captured on American soil.
posted by solistrato (76 comments total)

 
Nice find!
posted by dhoyt at 1:51 PM on September 9, 2005


"Why do you hate America?" is not a rhetorical question anymore.
posted by stbalbach at 1:51 PM on September 9, 2005


Welcome to monarchy.
posted by any major dude at 1:53 PM on September 9, 2005


Aaaand that's the end of American freedom. Good night, everybody!
posted by davelog at 2:03 PM on September 9, 2005


Last one out, please turn out the lights.

Or, y'know what... fuck it. Leave 'em on.
posted by 40 Watt at 2:05 PM on September 9, 2005


Anyone familiar enough with the case to say whether this affects Padilla only, or any US citizen labeled an "enemy combatant" by the executive branch?
posted by Rothko at 2:06 PM on September 9, 2005


Just don't you dare go and compare Bush to Hitler, that's just uncalled-for.
posted by Space Coyote at 2:06 PM on September 9, 2005


Nice find!
posted by dhoyt at 1:51 PM PST on September 9


Nice comment. Well-researched, reasoned, and very informative. Also it was funny. Another red-letter day for dhoyt - if he doesn't post a shitty comment in the first thirty seconds, it's free!
posted by Optimus Chyme at 2:10 PM on September 9, 2005


If I had a blog, you would have already flamed the comments section by now :(
posted by dhoyt at 2:12 PM on September 9, 2005


Can dhoyt single-handedly derail our loss of freedom? If so, I say, "Nicely done, sir!"
posted by hackly_fracture at 2:15 PM on September 9, 2005


Hey now, it still needs to go to the Supreme Court. Hopefully before roberts gets installed, since right now it's 4-4, with one less conservative.
posted by delmoi at 2:15 PM on September 9, 2005


Uh... didn't the Supreme Court already rule against this one?
posted by 40 Watt at 2:16 PM on September 9, 2005


I skimmed the opinion and it seems that Padilla conceded a number of crucial facts for purposes of summary judgment. From page 7: "Padilla was, on the facts with which we are presented, 'armed and present in a combat zone during armed conflict between al Qaeda/Taliban forces and the armed forces of the United States.'" Padilla also seems to have stipulated to his training to blow up buildings in the U.S. followed by travel to the U.S. to complete this assignment.
posted by exogenous at 2:20 PM on September 9, 2005


But the court's ruling, written by Judge Michael Luttig, who is considered a potential Supreme Court nominee, said definitively that Mr Bush had been given such powers by the congressional declaration authorising military force following the September 11 terrorist attacks.

That resolution, the court said, “provided the president all powers necessary and appropriate to protect American citizens from terrorist acts,” including the power to detain committed enemies even if they are US citizens.


What a remarkable interpretation of something that is so ambiguously broad. What power, I dare ask the court, would not be necessary and appropriate to protect American citizens from terrorist acts? Is the court saying that the President is authorized to do anything he wants to protect American citizens? Why not detainment camps of Muslim Americans? Is there any reason why that would not be acceptable under the court's reasoning?
posted by flarbuse at 2:22 PM on September 9, 2005


Yeah, pretty much anybody can be labeled an "enemy combatant." Since it now appears that they don't have to bring him to trial, it doesn't much matter whether there is evidence or not.

And frankly, if you read up on what they say he was planning, it's laughable. Cheech and Chong could have come up with a more feasible plan.
posted by ilsa at 2:24 PM on September 9, 2005


"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from
time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants." -Thomas Jefferson
posted by keswick at 2:27 PM on September 9, 2005


The exceedingly important question before us is whether the President of the United States possesses the authority to detain militarily a citizen of this country who is closely associated with al Qaeda, an entity with which the United States is at war; who took up arms on behalf of that enemy and against our country in a foreign combat zone of that war; and who thereafter traveled to the United States for the avowed purpose of further prosecuting that war on American soil, against American citizens and targets.

We conclude that the President does possess such authority
pursuant to the Authorization for Use of Military Force Joint Resolution enacted by Congress in the wake of the attacks on the United States of September 11, 2001. Accordingly, the judgment of the district court is reversed.


Not good news; hopefully the Supreme Court will be intelligent about the consequences of this ruling. Anyway, how can the US be at war (legally speaking) with a non-state entity?
posted by Rothko at 2:28 PM on September 9, 2005


This will obviously go to the Supreme Court, but how the votes will fall there is up in the air.

In the Hamdi case two of the more conservative justices, Scalia and Thomas, ended up on completely opposite ends of what was a fairly complicated spectrum of opinions. Scalia felt that the government was required to provide Hamdi with a criminal trial, I can't imagine he would hold differently here.

In the original Padilla case four justices(Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer) signed a dissent which reads in part

"Consistent with the judgment of the Court of Appeals, I believe that the Non-Detention Act, 18 U. S. C. §4001(a), prohibits--and the Authorization for Use of Military Force Joint Resolution, 115 Stat. 224, adopted on September 18, 2001, does not authorize--the protracted, incommunicado detention of American citizens arrested in the United States"

Assuming these four justices don't change their minds and actually agreed with the sentiment(which was contained with a footnote, and Scalia applies the same standard he was using in Hamdi, that would suggest a majority in favor of Padilla, regardless of what happens with appointments.

Still, that's a lot of ifs.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 2:32 PM on September 9, 2005


You'd think you'd need a declaration of war to be at war with somebody...
posted by InfidelZombie at 2:33 PM on September 9, 2005


If I had a blog, you would have already flamed the comments section by now :(
posted by dhoyt at 2:12 PM PST on September 9


Appropriately, it would be just as popular as furiousxgeorge's.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 2:35 PM on September 9, 2005


any major dude, I think this is more like dictatorship and tyranny than monarchy. Especially in the sense of this quote from the latter Wikipedia article: "The term [tyrant] now carries connotations of a cruel despot who places their own interests or the interests of a small oligarchy over the best interests of the general population of the state over which they govern." In this case, freedom from arbitrary arrest and indefinite imprisonment without being convicted of any crime has long been regarded as being in the interests of the general population of the United States, traditionally known as habeas corpus, which was specifically included in the U.S. Constitution in its first article and reinforced by the Fifth and Sixth Amendments.
posted by davy at 2:38 PM on September 9, 2005


You'd think you'd need a declaration of war to be at war with somebody...
posted by InfidelZombie at 5:33 PM EST on September 9 [!]


Indeed. :(
posted by Rothko at 2:43 PM on September 9, 2005


The interesting thing is that John Roberts was on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and was part of a unanimous panel that overturned the district court ruling to uphold military tribunals set up by the Bush administration. There is speculation that this was a factor in Bush deciding to select him (part of the good ol' boys / loyalty to person over country thing). I wonder if the Judges on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals (the ones that ruled on the Padilla case) might not have been thinking of that open Supreme Court seat when they made this ruling.
posted by tomsatter at 2:53 PM on September 9, 2005


If we trust the bureaucracy in its capabilities to do nothing fallacious, then why not grant it full powers? It would be much more effective.
posted by iamck at 2:56 PM on September 9, 2005


delmoi: wrong and wrong. There are no vacancies on the Court. Sandra Day O'Connor made her retirement effective upon confirmation of her replacement. (And it is odd that you would think that her absence means that there is one less conservative in any event.)
posted by esquire at 3:16 PM on September 9, 2005


So, how is this not a police state if citizens can be officially and legally imprisoned indefinitely without trial, and a significant minority of the populace is cowed into silence by fear of the government's actions, as is the case in the USA?

Is it not a police state because imprisonment without trial hasn't yet happened to any friends of the person arguing that it's not a police state?

Is it not a police state because it's not to do with whether the country allows civilians to be locked away without trial, nor is it to do with whether the country allows it and actually engages in the practise, but instead it needs to happen a certain number of times and the US hasn't reached that number yet as far as we know? What would that number be? 50? 100? 1000?

Is it not a police state because the guy currently at the centre of it isn't very nice and probably deserves whatever he gets?


You so frequently hear the sentiment "If you think the USA is a police state, you don't know what a police state is", but I'm beginning to think it's the apologists that don't know. There is real fear here.
posted by -harlequin- at 3:22 PM on September 9, 2005


Rothko: You raise a good question about the US being at war with a non-state entity, but our military action against Barbary pirates in the late 18th and early 19th centuries provides some precedent for the idea. (A state-sponsor of piracy, the pasha of Tripoli, eventually declared war on the United States, but our military action was not precipitated by the declaration and continued after Tripoli agreed to a treaty ending formal hostilities.) In fact, there are legal scholars who urge that the priniciples granting universal jurisdiction over pirates be given new life as a basis for fighting terrorism. I think it's a bad idea, but I think it's hard not to see the parallels.
posted by esquire at 3:25 PM on September 9, 2005


Bush said he favored "strict interpretation" of the constitution.

His speeches really should come with a laugh track.
posted by Jatayu das at 3:25 PM on September 9, 2005


Jatayu: under a strict interpretation of the Constitution, what part do you think that Padilla's detention violates?
posted by esquire at 3:29 PM on September 9, 2005


esquire: Um, and when is Rehnquist's retirement effective, again?
posted by jlub at 3:29 PM on September 9, 2005


" delmoi: wrong and wrong. There are no vacancies on the Court."

Hey, wasn't there some guy who died? Run... Ran... Rehnquist, or somebody? I vaguely recall...

*sardonic stare at esquire*
posted by zoogleplex at 3:32 PM on September 9, 2005


doh!
posted by zoogleplex at 3:37 PM on September 9, 2005


under a strict interpretation of the Constitution, what part do you think that Padilla's detention violates?

I'm not a lawyer, so forgive me if this is a terribly naive reading, but the Fifth Amendment states:
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation
Doesn't that cover it?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 3:40 PM on September 9, 2005


"under a strict interpretation of the Constitution, what part do you think that Padilla's detention violates?"

Various parts of the Bill of Rights maybe? Perhaps something in Article III? Hmmmm.....
posted by y6y6y6 at 3:45 PM on September 9, 2005


Rehnquist will obviously rule from the dead.

I seem to remember something in that there Constitution about "due process" and what not. I'd think a lawyer would remember the Fifth amendment.

Sure, it's got that out clause for time of war. But we are not at war. If "war" means whatever the fuck the executive wants it to mean, and not an actual declaration of war by the legislative (you know, separation of powers and all that), well then hell, I think the word 'no' means 'yes.'

This is a ruling that people will look back on with great shame in the future. This is not the America we can or should be.
posted by teece at 3:47 PM on September 9, 2005


"If I had a blog, you would have already flamed the comments section by now"

Nah, you'd have to have a blog worth reading.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:47 PM on September 9, 2005


"under a strict interpretation of the Constitution, what part do you think that Padilla's detention violates?"

Oh!!! Oh!!! I know!!! This part -

"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
posted by y6y6y6 at 3:48 PM on September 9, 2005


Armitage:

If they can make the case that Al Qaeda is really a branch of the US military, then they're 90% of the way there. :-)
posted by -harlequin- at 3:50 PM on September 9, 2005


""A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, there's no question about it."

-- George W. Bush
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:50 PM on September 9, 2005


As American citizens is it clear who the enemy of freedom is yet?

Or do we need another rigged election?
posted by Max Power at 3:52 PM on September 9, 2005


Hey guys I updated my profile page so you can see that I am a genuine bar-certified "lawyer" and I say that the Fifth Amendment is bunkum.

p.s. i am a lawyer
posted by Optimus Chyme at 3:54 PM on September 9, 2005


The Sixth Amendment also seems relevant here (something about a "speedy and public trial"):
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.
But, y'know, IANAL.

(Are there any Canadian MeFites willing to enter into a marriage of convenience with this cute Minnesotan in order to GET ME THE HELL OUT OF HERE?! I'm bilingual in French, so I should be able to find gainful employment).
posted by spacewaitress at 4:01 PM on September 9, 2005


um spacewaitress as a lawyer in washington d.c. i can tell you that you merely imagined this "sixth" amendment
posted by Optimus Chyme at 4:03 PM on September 9, 2005


Notice that the phrase
"nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;"
is actually SEPARATE from the phrase
"No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger;"
Therefore, in a "strict" interpretation, the words "in time of War or public danger" are not connected to the right of due process.

So, by stretching the part about "cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, in time of War (which says to me a court-martial during a declared war action rather than civilian court)," they can indict him of a crime without a grand jury in a time of "public danger," but they still can't deprive him of the benefits of due process.

Well, I'm not a lawyer, but I can actually read and parse English.

When did the prevailing legal opinion assert that the Fifth Amendment is "bunkum," Optimus? Seems to me lots of people are still exercising their right not to testify against themselves, including Administration types and the Enron/Worldcom crooks...
posted by zoogleplex at 4:13 PM on September 9, 2005


Why doesn't Bush just go into the National Archives, bust open the glass container holding the Bill of Rights, pull his pants down, and wipe his ass with it already?

posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:31 PM on September 9, 2005


I'm not a lawyer, but it occurs to me that there must be ways to detain, charge and try an american citizen who allegedly plots to kill large numbers of his or her fellow citizens, without pulling on the 400-dollar aligator-skin cowboy boots and doing the texas two-step all over our constitution.
posted by longsleeves at 5:07 PM on September 9, 2005


When did the prevailing legal opinion assert that the Fifth Amendment is "bunkum," Optimus?

I'm just havin' a little fun, zoogleplex.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 5:09 PM on September 9, 2005


Yeah, I thought you were sarcasming. :) No worries.

"I'm not a lawyer, but it occurs to me that there must be ways to detain, charge and try an american citizen who allegedly plots to kill large numbers of his or her fellow citizens, without pulling on the 400-dollar aligator-skin cowboy boots and doing the texas two-step all over our constitutiom"

Yeah, it's called issue a warrant and/or arrest them on charges of conspiracy to attempt mass murder, deny them bail, and try them. Just like you see on Law & Order, amazingly enough (though not quite so quick and pat). And believe it or not, it also applies to foreigners on US soil, just like laws of other countries apply to us when we visit them. So even if they're not Americans you can do that nice and legally.

I guess somehow all those learned judges on the appellate court forgot that. Law school was probably a while ago for them, huh?
posted by zoogleplex at 5:25 PM on September 9, 2005


So has esquire left the building? I'm genuinely curious why the fifth amendment right to due process doesn't apply here (or how I'm misreading the meaning of due process).
posted by Armitage Shanks at 5:32 PM on September 9, 2005


I don't agree with this logic, but there is a reasoning whereby the Padilla detention is kosher constitutionally. The requirement for due process is met, since the court held in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld that the government was required to give him a chance to challenge his classification as an enemy combatant in front of a judge, although the rules for this were different because of the on going military conflict. They held that the tribunals were authorized by the Authorization for Use of Military Force passed after 9/11.

Whether this logic extends to Padilla is complicated by the fact that 1)He wasn't picked up on the battlefield and 2)The Hamdi case was split into four opinions and thus it's status could be dramatically changed at any point since it provides a pretty shoddy guide for other courts.

I tend to think that the Supreme Court will side with Padilla because of first issue and I hope they will settle the issue more clearly.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 5:37 PM on September 9, 2005


I am also a lawyer now. Just got the certificate in the mail today, in fact!

Since I am a lawyer now, you are all wrong!
posted by wakko at 7:55 PM on September 9, 2005


Look, it's as simple as this: if the U.S. Government had any real evidence against Hamdi (and anyone and everyone imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay, the several prisons the U.S. is running in Afghanistan, the numerous prisons the U.S. is running in Iraq, or anywhere else the U.S. may be imprisoning people indefinitely without trials), then they would charge them with a crime and try them.

Since the U.S. is determined not to present any evidence against these people and not to charge them with any crime, it's clear there is ZERO evidence against them. Or at least not enough to successfully convict them of any crime.

Ergo, these are innocent people that are being permanently imprisoned by the U.S. Not just innocent-until-proven-guilty, but really and truly innocent; the U.S. doesn't even think it has enough evidence to mount a case.

Most of the commenters above have it wrong. Habeas corpus is the right in question; the right not to be imprisoned without a trial.

The English fought for and obtained the right of habeas corpus in 1679. It was later written into the U.S. Constitution:

"The privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."

That's the right you've lost. And I do say, "lost". It is possible, just possible that a 5-4 Supreme Court might restore it. But for now, it's lost. And it's entirely possible that the Supremes won't ride to the rescue.
posted by jellicle at 8:04 PM on September 9, 2005


This is just unbelievable. At least when they were holding Mitnick it was partially self inflicted, this decision is just wrong all around.
posted by Mitheral at 8:16 PM on September 9, 2005


jellicle, I don't agree with the court decision today, but to say we have "lost" the right of habeas corpus is plainly wrong. The court affirmed in the Hamdi case that anyone detained by the United States is entitled to a habeas corpus hearing to see if the state has a compelling reason to hold them. The question at issue is merely whether or not a showing that a person is an enemy combatant is sufficient grounds for holding them, if that person is a US citizen taken outside of a conflict area. While I think Padilla is not, legally speaking, an enemy combatant and thus must be charged with a crime, he IS not being denied his right to a writ of habeas corpus. If he were, there would be no legal case at all, and obviously there is.

As for your assertion that these people are all obviously innocent, that's just patently absurd. The argument from silence is not a valid argument. The fact that the government has not produced evidence does not de facto mean the person is innocent, merely that there is either no evidence or no evidence the government is willing to reveal in a court or perhaps, that the government merely wants to keep the person out of the criminal justice system, for reasons that might be unsavory, but have nothing to do with their innocence or guilt. Still, the court ruling in Hamdi required them to show some evidence, just not in the same fashion or with the same standards as a criminal trial.

Like I've said before, I think the real issue here is the conditions under which Padilla was taken. He was taken in a peaceful American airport, not in a combat zone. Baring some extraordinary circumstance, I think we need to assume that anyone taken here can not be treated as if they were a combatant. Hamdi, on the other hand, was taken on a foreign battlefield, while aiding a foreign government in hostile action against the United States, he should be treated differently, still, even he was extended the right of habeas corpus, even he was granted the right to a habeas corpus hearing, in which the government would be required to show their evidence that he was, indeed, an enemy combatant.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:44 PM on September 9, 2005


Wow.
posted by dejah420 at 10:01 PM on September 9, 2005


Lawyers are the last people you should be listening to about freedom. Their entire life is about following the letter of the law, such that they don't even comprehend the idea behind the spirit of it.
posted by nightchrome at 10:57 PM on September 9, 2005


The Universal Life Church definitely needs to open a law school and hand out diplomas.

And...esquire? Where are ya, buddy?

*crickets*
posted by Vidiot at 11:12 PM on September 9, 2005


The fact that the government has not produced evidence does not de facto mean the person is innocent, merely that there is either no evidence or no evidence the government is willing to reveal in a court or perhaps, that the government merely wants to keep the person out of the criminal justice system, for reasons that might be unsavory, but have nothing to do with their innocence or guilt. Still, the court ruling in Hamdi required them to show some evidence, just not in the same fashion or with the same standards as a criminal trial.

That's great, but do you honestly believe that all that fucking bullshit you just vomited is justice?
posted by Optimus Chyme at 11:12 PM on September 9, 2005


No, no, no, no, no, you are all wrong. You are all making it too complicated.

I remember so clearly Mrs. Harris telling us all about this stuff in the 5th grade. She made the Revolutionary War so exciting. And I was so impressed with our rights. Gosh those Founding Fathers (and Betsy Ross) were swell guys.

So I just know deep in my heart that American citizens cannot be held indefinitely without a trial. Ask my neighbor. And my mother. And that guy who fixes our tires when we get a flat. They'll all tell you the same thing.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:20 PM on September 9, 2005


Unbelievable.

Expect to see wide swaths of devistation on the 10 o'clock news if I become an 'enemy of the state'. "...known as 'Smedleyman' on an internet 'blog.' Once again, our top story tonight, hundreds of police officers killed after attempting to detain..."

When they kick at your front door
How you gonna come?
With your hands on your head
Or on the trigger of your gun

When the law break in
How you gonna go?
Shot down on the pavement
Or waiting on death row
(etc)

I won't push, but I'm not going to give.
-----------

/Optimus Chyme - Lawyerville?
*chuckle*
"Forget it Jake, it's Lawyerville"
posted by Smedleyman at 11:58 PM on September 9, 2005


So I just know deep in my heart that American citizens cannot be held indefinitely without a trial. Ask my neighbor. And my mother. And that guy who fixes our tires when we get a flat. They'll all tell you the same thing.

Look, secret life, I know you think being glibly cynical like this is all--well, cool or something (I can't imagine you think you're coming across as some wise, responsible adult with comments like this, but then, who aspires to be those things anymore, eh?), but you know what? Think for just a second (I know it hurts the head a little at first, but after a while, you get used to it).

What on earth could possibly go wrong if the courts were to give the President (in the single most sweeping act of "judicial activism" in American history) the authority to declare any American citizen an enemy combatant at whim, subject to indefinite detention without any legal recourse or right to due process? I guess I'd be naïve to suggest that power like that just begs to be abused.

And stop being so smug. It's incredibly depressing to see someone say such condescending things about the people in their lives--people like your neighbor, your mother, and that guy who fixes your tires when you get a flat. I hope he just leaves you stuck on the side of the road next time.
posted by all-seeing eye dog at 12:14 AM on September 10, 2005


I remember this singer once, on SNL (her name escapes me and/or I won't try to spell it) She with the shaved head. She advised everyone to "Fight the REAL enemy".

Good advice, that.

My ancestors refused to ratify the Constitution without the Bill of Rights. Amazing how smart those folks were, back then. Now we have a regime in power who find it convenient to dismiss those rights through means other than that set forth in the Constitution.

These points are not lightly made.

"Alas and alack, and fuck our luck." We live in interesting times.
posted by Goofyy at 1:46 AM on September 10, 2005


all-seeing eye dog, I believe your universal translator needs adjustment.
posted by zarah at 2:11 AM on September 10, 2005


Nothing new, it's called a lettre de cachet. Wikipedia advises one to "See also: the divine right of kings".
posted by NekulturnY at 3:23 AM on September 10, 2005


Let's hope this goes to the Supreme Court. I have a feeling that they might not see it the same way.

As bad as this decision is, I hear that the conservative judge who made it was in the running for the Supreme Court. Hopefully, this decision will prevent this from happening. If the judge was promoted to a Supreme Court Justice, he'd almost certainly have to recuse himself from the case.
posted by insomnia_lj at 3:26 AM on September 10, 2005


.....esquire?
posted by Vidiot at 9:14 AM on September 10, 2005


all-seeing eye dog, I believe your universal translator needs adjustment.

d'oh. i had a nagging fear i might be misreading some level of irony here. oh well; it gets so hard to tell in the wee hours of the morning... sorry for unfairly trouncing on you Secret Life if your point was not the one I took away (I thought you were chiding people who unreflectively assume they have some constitutional right not to be locked up at the whim of the prez). nothing to see here; move along...
posted by all-seeing eye dog at 10:49 AM on September 10, 2005


The fact that the government has not produced evidence does not de facto mean the person is innocent

When did we lose sight of "innocent until proven guilty"?

Oh yeah. Just now.

Which is the point.
posted by ook at 11:34 AM on September 10, 2005


I dunno. all-seeing eye dog, I read it pretty much the same way you did, and silently cheered your response. If Secret Life of Gravy was being ironic, it was a kind of meta-irony* that made it extremely difficult to know in what spirit to take his comment.

*which, this being Metafilter, may be the most appropriate kind.
posted by spacewaitress at 12:02 PM on September 10, 2005


If Secret Life of Gravy was being ironic, it was a kind of meta-irony* that made it extremely difficult to know in what spirit to take his comment.

*which, this being Metafilter, may be the most appropriate kind.

posted by spacewaitress at 3:02 PM EST

"his"= 48 year old housewife.

And if I was coming off as smug and ironic, I apologise but I wrote from the heart and meant every word I said. I really did like American History. I really do love our freedoms. I really do believe that my friends (which include neighbor and tire-changing guy) and family would agree with me that every American Citizen has the right to a speedy trial.

In fact, the only people who believe otherwise are lawyers and people who work for the government. Can we make them go back to the 5th grade?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 12:40 PM on September 10, 2005


My apologies, SLoG. (Both for misconstruing your post and committing the Internet fallacy of assuming everyone's a guy unless otherwise noted. Mea culpa).
posted by spacewaitress at 1:30 PM on September 10, 2005


ook, jellic said "not just innocent-until-proven-guilty, but really and truly innocent", thus the actual innocence of Padilla, not just in a technical, legal way, became an issue.

I've been trying to make this point for a while, but I'll do it again. I don't think the US can hold Padilla as an enemy combatant, because of the circumstances of his detainment. I think the Supreme Court will agree with me on this one.

What bugs me, is that everyone here is acting like this decision is obviously wrong or that there is no reasonable argument in favor of it. They seem to assert that detaining a citizen without trial is obviously always unconstitutional. You can believe these detainments are not legal, but 8 Supreme court justices held that they are in the Hamdi case. In a case that split four different ways, everyone but Scalia held that detaining a citizen without a trial can, in some circumstances, be constitutional.
The point is:
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 3:29 PM on September 10, 2005


No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, [...] nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; [...]

Doesn't that cover it?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 3:40 PM PST on September 9 [!]


Strictly speaking terrorists aren't people (or persons).


I am a licensed to practice Law in Iraq, Louisiana and Washington DC. So I should know.
posted by sic at 3:50 PM on September 10, 2005


Fuck it. Those of you who voted for these idiots deserve what you get. All the rest of us can do is shake our fists and get angry and watch our country turn to shit. Thanks.
posted by UseyurBrain at 4:07 PM on September 10, 2005


...esquire?
posted by Vidiot at 7:48 AM on September 12, 2005


...esquire?
posted by Vidiot at 7:48 AM PST on September 12

posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:06 PM on September 12, 2005


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