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Bush administration threatens veto against Geneva Convention.
September 26, 2005 4:32 AM   Subscribe

Bush administration threatens veto against Geneva Convention. After hearing about the latest torture scandal in Iraq, Republican Armed Services Committee Senators John McCain, John W. Warner, and Lindsey Graham are seeking an amendment to a defense bill which would require the military to abide by the Geneva Convention... but the Bush administration is reportedly opposed to any such legislation, and have threatened to veto it. To make matters worse, many prominent Congressional Republicans are also opposed to abiding by the Geneva Convention, to the point that overturning such a veto is far from assured.
posted by insomnia_lj (63 comments total)

 
So is America no longer recognising the Geneva convention?

It did sign it in 1929 along with a whole bunch of other countries.

But I suppose if it's OK for 'some people' to view it as irrelevant, I suppose it would be unfair if good ol' USA had to pay attention to it.
posted by Meccabilly at 4:49 AM on September 26, 2005


I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just. The US is never going to recover with leaders who are so committed to ignoring humanity - at home and abroad.

It is shameful.
posted by qwip at 4:54 AM on September 26, 2005


qwip: "I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just."

Nope, not time for that yet. In the U.S. we call them elections, and the next (significant) one isn't for 14 months. It's too bad that the last couple didn't really work, maybe the next couple will. Personally, I doubt it.
posted by Plutor at 4:59 AM on September 26, 2005


I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just. The US is never going to recover with leaders who are so committed to ignoring humanity - at home and abroad.


What sorta government does Holland have? They're really nice people... you should be more like them, or Canada. But not Vatican City - I hear they have a terrible despot that rules with an iron fist, Announces himself as ruler for life - even calls himself the highest authority on earth - and don't even start on his childhood upbringing, fell in with a rough crowd...
posted by Meccabilly at 4:59 AM on September 26, 2005


Plain and simple. If the US decides it doesn't need to abide by the Geneva Convention, then I will do everything I can to promote an anti-US agenda from where I live, and hope others do the same. We're talking fundamental human rights here, and there is no reason for your great nation not to take the high road. Get your asses in gear and let your congressmen know how terribly terribly wrong this is.
posted by furtive at 5:06 AM on September 26, 2005


If you're curious, here's a list of the countries currently on board for the Geneva Conventions.

Does Bush understand that this isn't an actual convention with uncomfortable chairs, continental breakfasts, name tags, and power point presentations? And he doesn't even have to GO to Geneva.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 5:19 AM on September 26, 2005


i really don't understand what you guys have a problem with here, don't you watch "24"?
have you not yet learned the price of ethical behavior?
how many people in a television show must die in same show , before america learns, that things like the Geneva convention, and our civil liberties, do more for the silent sleeper cell enemy within, than bombs or guns?
posted by nola at 5:22 AM on September 26, 2005


I waffle between tinfoil and Twain*: Is there really a coordinated neo-conservative cabal, (currently) commanded by GW Bush; or are our leaders just so magnificently short-sighted that they do't understand that we get what we give, often in spades? Does GW Bush really think that the military can do any better at planning for disasters than a small civilian coordinating organization -- which is to say, is he stupid -- or is he trying to lay the groundwork for martial law and domination of American society by the military?

At one point, I thought it would make more sense for them to use the National Guard. They could effectively federalize the guard without much difficulty (arguably, they already have), and using the Guard eliminates the need to do obvious things like abrogating Posse Comitatus. And it also routes around inconveniences like the American military ethos of service to the Constitutional authorities, which doesn't seem to pervade Guard-culture as much as it does that of the Army.

But for whatever reason -- simple hubris, perhaps, a desire to tame the military beast to their will, or maybe they're more afraid of Gibernatorial control of the Guard than they've previously let on -- they seem determined to engage Federal troops more and more willfully. But I digress....

To get back on-topic: Just look who's in favor of honoring the Geneva Convention: Powell, military lawyers, veterans like McCain, Graham and Warner. The convention is about "basic human rights", sure; but it's also about knowing that what we do to theirs, they will have no compunctions about doing to ours. (Goose, meet Gander.)

I lean toward hubris, or at least a particular flavor: The Neo-Cons and their fellow-travellers believe in a moral right to torture, and they believe that we have it. And they don't. And that they ought to know that, and if they don't, it's their problem, not ours.

It's kind of like belief in (the semitic) God: You are obligated to act in a way that's acceptable to our Judeo-Christian(-Islamic) GOD, whether you believe in it or not.
--
*...at least, as oft attributed: Never waste time attributing to malice when it's as easy to attributed to stupidity. (I know, I know, but "Twain" alliterates and "Napoleon" doesn't.)

posted by lodurr at 5:23 AM on September 26, 2005


I think he's bluffing after all when it comes to the veto he's been all hat and no cattle. Still wouldn't it be interesting if his first veto in five years was used on the Geneva Convention?
posted by Grimgrin at 5:34 AM on September 26, 2005


It's no wonder that the torture very closely paralleled the practices at Abu Ghraib. They were, after all, ordered by the same people. Then again, maybe everyone likes forming human pyramids out of prisoners. It's a fun game... like frat hazing!

Once again, the soldiers on the scene reported that military intelligence was enouraging the abuse. The soldiers said that Military Intelligence personnel regularly instructed soldiers to “smoke” -- torture until unconscious -- detainees before interrogations. "As long as no (prisoners) came up dead, it happened . . . We kept it to broken arms and legs."

If you're looking for the likely suspects, you have to look to Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller and those in the MI chain of command who reported to Gen. Sanchez. Miller, who was sent from Guantanamo at the behest of Rumsfeld, told the staff of Abu Ghraib that they should "treat prisoners like dogs".

... and they did. Not only in Abu Ghraib, but elsewhere in Iraq, where similar orders were given and similar policies followed. And yet, the whole situation reeks of plausible deniability.

Everyone -- from Rumsfeld to Sanchez to Fast and Miller -- did their absolute best to distort the boundaries of what is and is not torture until they were meaningless, and then they leaned hard on their subordinates to drag info out of prisoners at any cost, while being intentionally vague about what that cost should be... but nobody's to blame but the soldiers.

It reminds me of the old story of the death of Thomas Becket. "Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?" Lean hard enough, and whether you give direct orders or not, someone will surely do so.
posted by insomnia_lj at 5:37 AM on September 26, 2005


In all that stuff about the Kyoto protocol, wasn't one of the issues that if the US joined up and voted to ratify it they would be legally obligated to act to meet their targets due to the nature of the US legal process and structure? Given that the US signed up for Geneva isn't there anything in the body of US law which already compels the US to abide by it?
posted by biffa at 5:37 AM on September 26, 2005


Well, having studied the Conventions, I have to say that they're woefully out of date -- money for canteen provisions? That's just not the way of modern POW's.

That being said, of course, the U.S. wants no part of any international convention that ties its own hands. As usual, rules are more trouble than aid for the major power(s). The GC's would be the latest in a long list of conventions that other nations see fit to abide by despite their own diverse interests. The United States and Somalia, for example, are the only nations to not sign on to the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Why not? The ban on capital punishment for children, perhaps?
posted by dreamsign at 5:38 AM on September 26, 2005


A veto from Bush would be excellent. Think about how long this is gonna take to get through committee and votes... About a year, which puts us at the midterms. Since it's coming from within his own party, Bush'll have less ability to coerce loyalty, and a veto would turn a lot of Americans against Bush and his party right about election time.
Of course, I think McCain is too much of a political coward to truly wound Bush like that...
posted by klangklangston at 6:11 AM on September 26, 2005


or is he trying to lay the groundwork for martial law and domination of American society by the military?

Ding Ding Ding, you win. This is what happens when fear forces ordinary Americans to waive their rights with their flag.
posted by any major dude at 6:13 AM on September 26, 2005


qwip: I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just.

Plutor: Nope, not time for that yet. In the U.S. we call them elections, and the next (significant) one isn't for 14 months.

Let's see ... I believe there was a period in American history once before when it had a remote, autocratic, imperialistic government it couldn't change by election, led by a man named George ... and didn't Americans take things into there own hands then? And didn't things actually turn out rather well for it?

Just sayin' ...
posted by kcds at 6:24 AM on September 26, 2005


So, do any of the Meta/neo-con crowd care to defend the administration?
posted by oddman at 6:32 AM on September 26, 2005


Does Bush understand that this isn't an actual convention with uncomfortable chairs, continental breakfasts, name tags, and power point presentations? And he doesn't even have to GO to Geneva.

If you had a trick bladder, you wouldn't want to sit in an uncomfortable chair either.
posted by pepcorn at 6:51 AM on September 26, 2005


Not really sure how you could defend this without saying you dislike human rights and are groovy with torture.

But I'm sure someone will drag out Dershowitz's idiotic "ticking bomb" scenerio. Somehow I cannot believe that torturing someone who intends to kill thousands of people with a horrible weapon is going to all of a sudden change their mind once pain is applied.
posted by Talanvor at 6:59 AM on September 26, 2005


kcds: "Let's see ... I believe there was a period in American history once before when it had a remote, autocratic, imperialistic government it couldn't change by election, led by a man named George ... and didn't Americans take things into there own hands then? And didn't things actually turn out rather well for it?"

Hahaha. That's wishful thinking. The American people will rise up against their government and overthrow it because some terrorists are having their human rights violated? If we can't even vote him out of office when we have the chance, you really think we would get off our Lay-Z-Boys to revolt? I'm pessimistic about the '06 and '08 elections. I can't come up with a word for how I feel about a proletariat revolution's chances.
posted by Plutor at 6:59 AM on September 26, 2005


oddman: nah as rats they jump from the ship when they sense it's sinking..but that's true of rats of any political color.
posted by elpapacito at 7:02 AM on September 26, 2005


par for the course.
posted by Balisong at 8:09 AM on September 26, 2005


I watch the Bush Administration with a feeling that its some kind of morbid political Marx brothers routine. The administration's ability to blindly act without apparent concern or forsight of the future implications never ceases to amaze me. Either they REALLY know stuff that we don't and act upon that information, or the WMDs are in Iraq.
posted by Atreides at 8:16 AM on September 26, 2005



posted by Rothko at 8:25 AM on September 26, 2005


in the U.S. we call them elections, and the next (significant) one isn't for 14 months.

Elections are widely overrated for their ability to induce change.
posted by I Love Tacos at 8:44 AM on September 26, 2005


I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just.

Qwip... please... let me have whatever it is you're smoking.

The world has yet to see a non-corrupt, just government. And it never will.

Get real.
posted by AspectRatio at 8:46 AM on September 26, 2005


That said, axing the Geneva convention is very bad.
posted by AspectRatio at 8:47 AM on September 26, 2005


I'm baffled and disturbed. Do we not abide by the Geneva Convention?
posted by stbalbach at 8:47 AM on September 26, 2005


Given that the US signed up for Geneva isn't there anything in the body of US law which already compels the US to abide by it?

Torture and other cruel and inhumane treatment alleged in this report do not fall into the “gray areas” in the law. Common article 3 to the four Geneva Conventions of 1949, which is accepted as the minimal standard of treatment for persons in custody during any armed conflict, prohibits “at any time and in any place whatsoever, … violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture, [and] outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment.” Further protections can be found in the fundamental guarantees under article 75 of the Protocol I of 1977 to the Geneva Conventions, which is accepted as reflecting customary laws of armed conflict.

Even if the Geneva Conventions were not applicable, various provisions of the U.S. Uniform Code of Military Justice subjects soldiers to court-martial or disciplinary measures for mistreating prisoners. Applicable UCMJ criminal provisions include article 93 (cruelty and maltreatment), article 128 (assault), and articles 118 and 119 (murder and manslaughter), as well as article 120 (rape and carnal knowledge), article 124 (maiming), and, for officers, article 133 (conduct unbecoming an officer). Superior officers who order the mistreatment of prisoners or who knew or should have known that such mistreatment was occurring and did not take appropriate measures can be prosecuted as a matter of command responsibility.

The treatment of prisoners alleged here also violates U.S. obligations under international human rights law. The Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment provides that “[n]o exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat or war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.” The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which also bans torture and other mistreatment, ensures that the right to be free from torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment can never be suspended by a state, including during periods of public emergency.

These standards have largely been incorporated into U.S. law that is applicable to members of the armed services. The War Crimes Act of 1996 (18 U.S.C. § 2441) makes it a criminal offense for U.S. military personnel and U.S. nationals to commit war crimes as specified in the Geneva Conventions. The federal anti-torture statute (18 U.S.C. § 2340A), enacted in 1994, provides for the prosecution of a U.S. national or anyone present in the United States who, while outside the United States, commits or attempts to commit torture.


From the conclusion of Human Rights Watch: Leadership Failure - Firsthand Accounts of Torture of Iraqi Detainees by the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division
posted by y2karl at 8:50 AM on September 26, 2005


How low can Bush sink?
posted by caddis at 8:58 AM on September 26, 2005


I'm willing to bet a whole lot lower.
posted by 40 Watt at 9:12 AM on September 26, 2005


The Geneva Suggestions.
posted by fungible at 9:28 AM on September 26, 2005


I wouldn't take that bet.
posted by caddis at 9:29 AM on September 26, 2005


How much bullets does this thing take?
posted by poppo at 9:35 AM on September 26, 2005


Here's another possible Geneva-conventions breach that seems relevant.
posted by soyjoy at 9:37 AM on September 26, 2005


Here's another possible Geneva-conventions breach that seems relevant.
posted by soyjoy at 12:37 PM EST on September 26 [!]


America loves snuff, traitor.
posted by Rothko at 9:40 AM on September 26, 2005


Funny. The Geneva convention is a signed treaty: thus, it is already the law of the land

How bizarre to have a fight over whether or not the US military should have to obey the law.

It's amazing how far this country fell in five years.
posted by teece at 9:58 AM on September 26, 2005


Maybe I don't understand the political climate and the media in the US, but just how the hell can the president of the United States threaten to veto against a bill that would force him too abide the Geneva Conventions, without it being on the front page of absolutely all major US news sources? People here joke about an uprising, about fighting the power, but why the hell isn't it happening?

Which is it? Doesn't the american people know that George W supports torture? Don't they care? Or do they condone torture as well?

I'm not trying to make an anti-american point, I just honestly want to know. I don't get this.
posted by cheerleaders_to_your_funeral at 10:17 AM on September 26, 2005


qwip: I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just.

This requires a media that supports such action. People aren't just going to rise up on their own, we need the media to tell them how fucked up everything is before we will actually do anything.

Back when Bush was talking about invading iraq in 2003, and there were world-wide protests, I thought we came kind of close. At least closer than we have been in a long time. If the media had been less in agreement with the party line, things might have gotten out of control. Instead, we had news stories like this one
posted by darkness at 10:32 AM on September 26, 2005


Boy...just when I thought we couldn't get any worse in the world's view. What the hell are we doing? Todd Lokken.
posted by toddlok at 10:43 AM on September 26, 2005


We're doing Todd Lokken? How the hell did that make it through congress?
posted by klangklangston at 10:48 AM on September 26, 2005


I, for one, think we went Todd Lokken a long time ago...
posted by LordSludge at 11:06 AM on September 26, 2005


VETO TODD LOKKENS!
posted by five fresh fish at 11:16 AM on September 26, 2005


HOW DARE THOSE EVIL-DOERS KIDNAP, TORTURE AND BEHEAD AMERICANS?!

Oh... right. I see your point.
posted by Decani at 11:24 AM on September 26, 2005


Nope, not time for that yet. In the U.S. we call them elections, and the next (significant) one isn't for 14 months.

If diebold run elections could actually change anything, they would already be illegal.
posted by Mr_Zero at 11:30 AM on September 26, 2005


For a country that no longer declares wars, *EVERY* foriegner is someone who can be legally tortured.

No war = no POWs = no foul.
posted by insomnia_lj at 11:54 AM on September 26, 2005


I've been saving the phrase "rules with an iron hamfist" for just such an occasion.
posted by aubilenon at 11:57 AM on September 26, 2005


Which is it? Doesn't the american people know that George W supports torture? Don't they care? Or do they condone torture as well?

OMG... Didn't you hear Britney Spears had a kid?!?!? Torture... uhhh... no thank you! That's totally icky!

Look, Britney named him!
posted by AspectRatio at 1:09 PM on September 26, 2005


Talanvor writes "Somehow I cannot believe that torturing someone who intends to kill thousands of people with a horrible weapon is going to all of a sudden change their mind once pain is applied."


Ya the perfect plan would be to resist torture for a while and then start send your tortures on wild goose chases.

[poke, poke]
The bomb is on the A line.
[more poking]
The gas is in the stadium
[more poking]
The firebomb is in the white house
[boom! suitcase nuke takes out congress during a joint seesion]
posted by Mitheral at 2:56 PM on September 26, 2005


As the only conservative to weigh in on this apparently, I'd like to say I wholeheartedly support McCain's efforts. (Gee, he's a REPUBLICAN!?)

Some of this crap...I mean every time I read some of this I think it's the last straw and something new happens that I have to believe all over again. Hell, I split from the program as soon as I saw we were being lied to on the war, and yet some people seem to just cling to these particular idiots as if they are the only brand of right wing there is and Iraq is right no matter what and this policy is the best, etc.

Other considerations aside - bottom line, torture is inefficient. I don't want my tax dollars going for it.
posted by Smedleyman at 5:17 PM on September 26, 2005


“just how the hell can the president of the United States threaten to veto against a bill that would force him too abide the Geneva Conventions”



Something along the lines of - we don’t need a bill to abide by the conventions since we signed it. Then everyone raises hell and argues. Then of course we ignore Gonzales’ statements and such and state our intention to abide by the convention. Which looks like a concession and the pro-Bush-even-if-he-rapes-my-child crowd will go “There you see!”
And then something will happen where it comes up again for a bit. At first we’ll say “It’s old news” But then later we say, well there are considerations and susseruss abplaumb wee dare too this is different blurg forsnith it’s not torture tem allershain mavin blapnig etc. etc. etc. and throw all kinds of chaff to confuse the hell out of things.


Then continue to follow policy.
ta da!



/derail

“The world has yet to see a non-corrupt, just government. And it never will.”

Finland, Iceland, and Denmark do a good job.

Iceland - Free (1,1) 9.4 The Government generally respected the human rights of its citizens, and the law and judiciary provide effective means of dealing with individual instances of abuse.
Denmark - Free (1,1) 9.5 The Government generally respected the human rights of its citizens, and the law and judiciary provide effective means of dealing with instances of individual abuse.
etc.
(annual survey by the Berlin-based Transparency International - scale of 1-10 with 10 being perfectly clean)
(quotes from the U.S. State Department’s Human Rights Report, March 2002)
posted by Smedleyman at 5:19 PM on September 26, 2005


Finland, Iceland, and Denmark do a good job.

Thanks, Smedleyman, I didn't get a chance to reply and those are my sentiments exactly.

I'm not saying that you won't always have problems with crappy politicians, but we've had sketchy administrations that still managed to do a lot of good for the US and the world. Let's have more of that and less of what we currently have.

But I really feel that Bush & Co. are an indictment on the US voters as a whole. I know many feel he stole the election, but voters are still putting in enough senators and congressmen to keep him sitting pretty. The fact that we have a Frist and a Santorum shows that people have the capacity to want to be ruled by really bad men. Hopefully the elections will bring about a change for the better, but I still know way too many people that just don't see things as a problem. If Bush is out, then they want someone else who will protect us from the Terrorists and Evil Do'ers. It's a problem with US morality more than anything else.
posted by qwip at 6:36 PM on September 26, 2005


That shifting-like sound you hear is your Founding Father spinning in their graves.
posted by clevershark at 7:49 PM on September 26, 2005


er, Fathers.
posted by clevershark at 7:49 PM on September 26, 2005


When I was growing up, I was taught that criminals can go on successfully with their agenda for a long time, but their arrogance always brings them down in the end, and usually from left-field.

Bush seems to be slowly getting the death by a thousand cuts, and he deserves every one of them.

Now if we can just get the voting machines back.
posted by INFOHAZARD at 12:05 AM on September 27, 2005


qwip: I really feel it's time to have a complete governmental re-org. Out with the corrupt and in with the just.

darkness: This requires a media that supports such action. People aren't just going to rise up on their own, we need the media to tell them how fucked up everything is before we will actually do anything.

Oh, you mean the lib'rul mainstream media? Perhaps you forget that half the country already disbelieves the MSM, and the other half is only just remembering that the job of the media is to question and investigate, and not just copy down everything Scott McClellan says.

Can't find the quote right now, but didn't Bush say something about how "you shouldn't believe everything you hear from the mainstream media"?

Let's face it, if the Post and the Times(s) led tomorrow with a headline saying "COUNTRY FUCKED - REVOLUTION NOW" you really think ANYTHING would happen? I mean, other than das Heimatsicherheitsamt closing them down for insurrection while a hundred million stood by nodding dumbly and saying "Yup, told you so, buncha commies"?

Plutor: I can't come up with a word for how I feel about a proletariat revolution's chances.

Inconceivable?
posted by kcds at 6:33 AM on September 27, 2005


Other considerations aside - bottom line, torture is inefficient. I don't want my tax dollars going for it.

Absolutely.

You're not the only conservative weighing in dude, I'm a conservative as well... but conservative in the small government, small spending, take care of shit at home, traditional conservative/Republican way that seemed to go out with Reagan.

McCain may have the balls to get things right.
posted by AspectRatio at 7:33 AM on September 27, 2005


"McCain may have the balls to get things right."

Except, of course, that he wants to stay in Iraq until he could walk down the streets of Baghdad and not get shot, to paraphrase his words.

...and that, my friend, will be a *LONG* time.
posted by insomnia_lj at 7:45 AM on September 27, 2005


You know, even if torture worked, we shouldn't do it. Even if it didn't mean we risked American soldiers getting tortured as well, we shouldn't do it.

We shouldn't torture because torture is intrinsically and fundamentally wrong, and is an essential violation of human rights which we, as a civilized people, should be striving to uphold.

This point seems to be lost in the conversation. Where are the conservative moral absolutists, who believe there is a right and a wrong and nothing in between, no wiggle room, no grey aeas, no situational morality, on this subject?
posted by maxsparber at 9:38 AM on September 27, 2005


There's always situational morality.
posted by AspectRatio at 2:37 PM on September 27, 2005


"We shouldn't torture because torture is intrinsically and fundamentally wrong, and is an essential violation of human rights which we, as a civilized people, should be striving to uphold."

Unquestionably. But we're debating this as a matter of policy, not as what joe blow does in situation "X."

The 'fundamentally wrong' thing cuts no ice with most people much less most dictators. The question you have to ask is why is it wrong?

Ultimately you get to that "Well...it doesn't work" place. Why don't we eat each other? Same answer. Why shouldn't we spend our lives masterbating? etc.

One turns the other cheek for example, for myriad reasons, but at the core, you're better off if you lose attachment to revenge. Fixation on revenge doesn't work. It won't make you happier healthier, won't help society, won't help anyone.
Sicily comes to mind.


"McCain may have the balls to get things right."
"Except, of course, that he wants to stay in Iraq... "

No snark meant, insomnia_lj, but we're talking plumbing and your bringing up the electrical work.
posted by Smedleyman at 5:36 PM on September 27, 2005


McCain hasn't got the balls to go against the big Elephant just yet. He's still holding out a vain hope that the GOP fixers might let him be the golden boy nominee in 08. I'm laying 10 to 1 it ain't gonna happen. They don't put anyone up that hasn't been 99%+ right on the party line. John has has too many temporary attacks of conscience and fleeting moments of decency for them to trust him. But he really REALLY wants to be POTUS.

I'd expect Newt or someone of his ilk as the nominee in 08. After that, Johnny Mac may get the picture that it ain't gonna happen, and then the balls may descend and the gloves come off. But not now.

Meanwhile - if you want to see some real positive change take place - i.e. not seeing the US turn into a complete quasi-fascist corporate oligarchy, we can do a few concrete things.

First, get in touch with the local chapter for Fair/Clean/Publicly Funded Elections in your state. If there isn't one, form one, and try to get a clean elections initiative on the ballot where you live. Hell, even getting clean elections law passed at the city and county levels is a good idea. This isn't an impossible task either - Arizona, New Mexico, North Carolina, Vermont, Maine, and Massachusetts all have public campaign financing laws on the books. For more info, checkout http://www.publicampaign.org/

Next - and this is a bit more nebulous, but most imperative - we need a nationally standardized ballot system with verifiable paper trail results. There are a lot of good sites on this one - start at http://www.verifiedvoting.org/

Finally, if you're left of center, help us do all we can to prevent Hillary Clinton or any other centrist, pro corporate, DLC stooge from railroading their way to the DNC nomination. Get involved in local politics, work toward becoming a delegate to your state convention, and from there, to the DLC convention. Use the internet to build coalitions with other like minded folks who want to see a real responsible progressive nominee, not another party hack in bed with the same interests as Dubya and his gang.

We don't need another Kerry 04.

My $0.02

todd lokken rokken like dokken
posted by stenseng at 10:26 AM on September 28, 2005


edit: DNC convention

freudian slip?
posted by stenseng at 10:28 AM on September 28, 2005


If you're looking for the likely suspects, you have to look to Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller and those in the MI chain of command who reported to Gen. Sanchez. Miller, who was sent from Guantanamo at the behest of Rumsfeld, told the staff of Abu Ghraib that they should "treat prisoners like dogs".

Oi!, my neighbor is his God daughter. I have wittnessed him filling her father's role many times during our friendship. Knowing this, wonder how I should approach asking for an over due borrowed item back tonight from her? no joke here
posted by thomcatspike at 2:18 PM on October 6, 2005


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