Join 3,572 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


“I'm not against the police; I'm just afraid of them.”
January 2, 2010 7:11 PM   Subscribe

Executive Order 12425 grants INTERPOL "full immunity." Not dipolmatic immunity, but the immunities granted in the The International Organizations Immunities Act. It's causing some alarm.
posted by bigmusic (70 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
As far as I know, I haven't been arrested by INTERPOL.
posted by fuq at 7:14 PM on January 2, 2010


More than 70 organizations - including the [...] the International Pacific Halibut Commission — receive those rights.

First they came for the fish and I did not speak up 'cause honestly I don't eat that much fish... I mean I enjoy tuna from time to time... But you know... not a big fish guy.
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth at 7:17 PM on January 2, 2010 [30 favorites]


Contrary to its portrayal in some movies, Interpol has no police force that conducts investigations and makes arrests. Rather, it serves its 188 member countries by working as a clearinghouse for police departments in different nations to share law enforcement information.
There is nothing newsworthy here,” said Christina Reynolds, a White House spokeswoman.
posted by memebake at 7:18 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


“this new directive from Obama may be the most destructive blow ever struck against American constitutional civil liberties.”
Andrew C. McCarthy declared that an “international police force” could now operate inside the United States “unrestrained by the U.S. Constitution and American law.”


Jesus, do conservative peepants ever get sick of being terrified by everything?
posted by stavrogin at 7:19 PM on January 2, 2010 [24 favorites]


Jesus, do conservative peepants ever get sick of being terrified by everything?

If there's nothing to be afraid of, I can't justify my psychotic beliefs. Ergo...
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:21 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Me neither. Their second album is definitely my favourite though.

Oh, that Interpol. Isn't this basically the law enforcement version of people opposing diplomatic immunity because of unpaid parking tickets and CSI episodes where relatives of diplomats get away with murder? Sadly, the Republican party will almost undoubtedly run campaign ads where uniformed 'Interpol police' with strange names roam the streets of Texas arresting people under French law for illegal possession of firearms. Maybe they'll throw in a bit about executive orders being communistic for good measure so we can get even more stupid in the mix!
posted by jaffacakerhubarb at 7:21 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jesus, do conservative peepants ever get sick of being terrified by everything?

No more or less than liberal peepants.

Conservative, liberal ... they're all statists.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 7:22 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


This is rubbish.
posted by localhuman at 7:22 PM on January 2, 2010


“There is nothing newsworthy here,” said Christina Reynolds, a White House spokeswoman, waving her hand in a quick semicircular motion.

"There is nothing newsworthy here," repeated the press corps, hypnotically.

posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:22 PM on January 2, 2010 [25 favorites]


Conservative, liberal ... they're all statists.

See, this is why I come to Metafilter. Where else on the internet could I find a clever idea like that?
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:25 PM on January 2, 2010 [12 favorites]


I also retract my previous statement.
posted by localhuman at 7:25 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


What memebake said. There is nothing really of note other than Interpol can amass parking tickets and not have to pay them off (like every country/organization with foreign workers who fall under the immunity blanket).

Theortically given the way INTERPOL works the only way I can conceive of that immunity allowing for some harm is if some asshole gets really drunk and crashes his/her car and kills someone (ala the Georgian ambassador), he''l/she'll technically have immunity but given that he/she works for a police organization it's almost assured they'll be prosecuted somewhere.

I grew up with a friend who had diplomatic immunity. He saved our asses once.
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth at 7:27 PM on January 2, 2010


See, this is why I come to Metafilter. Where else on the internet could I find a clever idea like that?

So, Mr. Pope ... you can make a case that liberals -- or conservatives, for that matter -- have followed a consistent pattern over the past few decades of NOT pushing and legislating for greater influence of the State over individuals?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 7:29 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


So the story on both the NYT and ABC is not really about the routine granting of law enforcement privileges that Bush would have done had he not been busy clearing brush, but the whining and crying of republicans in their outrage du jour. Thus do right wing tropes gain footing as "controversies."
posted by minimii at 7:30 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


So... conservative rightwing morons are ignoring facts in order to make someone look bad?

Yawn.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:32 PM on January 2, 2010


NON-STORY,
unless you're Carmen Sandiego.
posted by joe lisboa at 7:40 PM on January 2, 2010 [24 favorites]


"conservative peepants "

wow...this post was worth it for this phrase alone....
posted by HuronBob at 7:40 PM on January 2, 2010


From The NYT link in the FPP: Bloggers have accused Mr. Obama of ceding American sovereignty, painting a portrait of an international police force operating on United States soil without legal restraints. They have also argued that the order is part of a plot to allow international courts to arrest and prosecute American officials for war crimes.

Is this a logical conclusion to draw? If so, could Obama simply allow Interpol to bring Cheney et al to justice?
posted by Monsters at 7:42 PM on January 2, 2010


yeah guys the state sucks by the way it is awesome here in somalia thanks for asking
posted by synaesthetichaze at 7:43 PM on January 2, 2010 [33 favorites]


"Conservatives can't have it both ways," the official says. "You can't be complaining about the hypothetical abdication of US jurisdiction at the same time you're complaining the Obama administration is not being tough enough on national security."

We shall now observe conservatives having it both ways.
posted by hackly_fracture at 7:44 PM on January 2, 2010 [24 favorites]


i wish the obama administration was doing this so interpol could arrest cheney, but sadly, he's not.
posted by empath at 7:54 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Eh, I bet Zenigata still doesn't catch Lupin.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 8:00 PM on January 2, 2010 [11 favorites]


Good news for her.
posted by Faint of Butt at 8:01 PM on January 2, 2010


Being that the USA is a member nation of INTERPOL, the US office is located in the Department Of Justice, and it is staffed by US citizens or permanent residents who can pass a security check.

Interpol-U.S. National Central Bureau

"The USNCB generally follows the guidelines set forth by the Department of Justice" in regards to Freedom Of Information Act requests.
posted by King Sky Prawn at 8:06 PM on January 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


From the article:
"In 1983, President Ronald Reagan extended some rights — including immunity from lawsuits or prosecution for official acts — to Interpol, which was holding its annual meeting in the United States. But Mr. Reagan’s order did not include other standard privileges — like immunity from certain tax requirements and from having its property or records subject to search and seizure — because at the time, Interpol had no permanent office or employees on United States soil."

All this act seems to be doing is extending privileges Reagan- the great Reagan- gave to INTERPOL. Instead of having immunity apply just when they're in town for meetings, that stuff now applies full time now that they have a domestic office.
posted by jmd82 at 8:18 PM on January 2, 2010 [6 favorites]


Order on Interpol Work Inside U.S. Irks Conservatives

Everything Obama does irks conservatives. Why should this non-story be any different?
posted by grounded at 8:29 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


It's actually worse than you imagine. They also allow the Internet free transit over our American wires. That's right: foreign data passing untrammeled over our sacred copper and fiber, right through the American Homeland!!!
posted by George_Spiggott at 8:39 PM on January 2, 2010 [5 favorites]


“this new directive from Obama may be the most destructive blow ever struck against American constitutional civil liberties.”

I thought that was the Patriot Act.
posted by philip-random at 8:43 PM on January 2, 2010 [9 favorites]


This euro-capitulation is the first step towards forced gay marriage at gunpoint.
posted by fleetmouse at 8:47 PM on January 2, 2010


Everything Obama does irks conservatives. Why should this non-story be any different?

Yeah, this. If Obama had refused to grant Interpol the immunity, the right-wing media would be shrieking about how he's against law and order and wants to help his criminal buddies.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:58 PM on January 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


This euro-capitulation is the first step towards forced gay marriage at gunpoint.

Does this involve David Bowie?
posted by maxwelton at 8:58 PM on January 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Interpol has a share of dark history during and after the Nazi era. "Also working in the SD at the time was a young SS officer (#337259), commissioned on July 1, 1939, by the name of Paul Dickopf. After the war, Dickopf was to reemerge and become Interpol's president from 1968 to 1972. "
posted by hortense at 9:06 PM on January 2, 2010


So, Mr. Pope ... you can make a case that liberals -- or conservatives, for that matter -- have followed a consistent pattern over the past few decades of NOT pushing and legislating for greater influence of the State over individuals?

Don't most laws grant and protect liberty—just maybe not for you, and maybe at your expense? If your rich neighbor gets a law passed that makes you mow your lawn, is that statism? But your ugly lawn affects his house price; you are taking money from him, so if the law goes your way, does he get to cry statism? I'm just not seeing "statism" as a useful way to understand legislation and politics.
posted by fleacircus at 9:13 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Let me explain to you what is going on here. In typically paranoid style, the right-wingers have been whipped up into a fervor by their handlers because of a typical, uncontroversial executive order signed by Obama. Whipping up this fervor is necessary to keep the right-wing base in a state of constant agitation. The problem is, here, that if the New York Times does not report on the fact that the right-wingers have whipped themselves into this state of agitation over a false controversy, then they get even more upset that the New York Times is "ignoring the story" -- a story concocted out of whole cloth by the right wing noise machine which keeps the base in a constant state of false outrage.

So the New York Times is kind of in a bind-- to placate the right wing and make it seem like they're reporting "what people are talking about," they lend credence of the paranoid ravings of delusionals and the borderline violent propagandists of the right.
posted by deanc at 9:13 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Of course Interpol needs immunity. How else is Zenigata going to catch Lupin III?
posted by happyroach at 9:30 PM on January 2, 2010


“this new directive from Obama may be the most destructive blow ever struck against American constitutional civil liberties.”

Andrew C. McCarthy declared that an “international police force” could now operate inside the United States “unrestrained by the U.S. Constitution and American law.”


We already grant these powers to Blackwater/Xe, as we found out during Hurricane Katrina.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:24 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


I'm just not seeing "statism" as a useful way to understand legislation and politics.

In my experience "statism" is code for "BUT I DON'T WANT TO PAY TAXES".
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:29 PM on January 2, 2010 [12 favorites]


As far as taking this latest outrage seriously, I get emails from my paranoid father-in-law that turn Reuters news stories like this into this:

On Wednesday Obama Took the First Major Step in a Plan to Ban All Firearms in the United States

On Wednesday the Obama administration took its first major step in a plan to ban all firearms in the United States . The Obama administration intends to force gun control and a complete ban on all weapons for US citizens through the signing of international treaties with foreign nations. By signing international treaties on gun control, the Obama administration can use the US State Department to bypass the normal legislative process in Congress. Once the US Government signs these international treaties, all US citizens will be subject to those gun laws created by foreign governments. These are laws that have been developed and promoted by organizations such as the United Nations and individuals such as George Soros and Michael Bloomberg. The laws are designed and intended to lead to the complete ban and confiscation of all firearms.

The Obama administration is attempting to use tactics and methods of gun control that will inflict major damage to our 2nd Amendment before US citizens even understand what has happened. Obama can appear before the public and tell them that he does not intend to pursue any legislation (in the United States) that will lead to new gun control laws, while cloaked in secrecy, his Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton is committing the US to international treaties and foreign gun control laws. Does that mean Obama is telling the truth? What it means is that there will be no publicized gun control debates in the media or votes in Congress. We will wake up one morning and find that the United States has signed a treaty that prohibits firearm and ammunition manufacturers from selling to the public. We will wake up another morning and find that the US has signed a treaty that prohibits any transfer of firearm ownership. And then, we will wake up yet another morning and find that the US has signed a treaty that requires US citizens to deliver any firearm they own to the local government collection and destruction center or face imprisonment.

This is not a joke nor a false warning. As sure as government health care will be forced on us by the Obama administration through whatever means necessary, so will gun control.


This most recent email from him is highly representative of how right-wing paranoids operate:

• They don't bother to read the news article
• They read some pundit's view of the news article
• They pass on the original article, quoting the pundit's interpretation as the original news article
• They fill their nutcase emails with code words and phrases such as: United Nations, George Soros, Obama, Hillary Clinton, socialism, etc.

Getting to the point of this comment, I don't know the political affiliations of the original poster of this thread about INTERPOL, but it's pretty clear few actually have bothered to read the news article to repost it accurately in emails and on Metafilter.

There's nothing to see here, really, except another display of paranoid wingnuttery by the right-wing element on this site and on the larger Internet. And we can get that every time a Republican opens his fat, racist mouth, anyway, so this isn't news, by any means.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:32 PM on January 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's been revoked.
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:36 PM on January 2, 2010 [5 favorites]


Whatever the history of the intersections of Nazism and INTERPOL during and immediately after WWII, the present Secretary-General of INTERPOL is Ronald Noble, "the son of an African-American father and a German-born mother."
posted by King Sky Prawn at 10:46 PM on January 2, 2010


In my experience "statism" is code for "BUT I DON'T WANT TO PAY TAXES".

As I've seen it used, "statism" means that a group of people, if it's large enough, is perfectly justified in doing things to its members that would be considered immoral and wrong if done by individuals. The state doesn't have the same kind of ethical limitations that individuals do, even though it's made up purely of individuals, who all have the same flaws and failings that they ordinarily do.

It's that magical transformation of morality that's "statism", at least in my limited exposure to the concept. I've only just started seeing it recently, so I may be misinterpreting it.
posted by Malor at 11:00 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Whipping up this fervor is necessary to keep the right-wing base in a state of constant agitation. The problem is, here, that if the New York Times does not report on the fact that the right-wingers have whipped themselves into this state of agitation over a false controversy, then they get even more upset that the New York Times is "ignoring the story"

Reminds me of the 1970s Philadelphia Flyers (Fred Shero, coach) who became known as the Broadstreet Bullies. The overall strategy (never really admitted) was to simply be the dirtiest, meanest, most unrelentingly nasty and ugly team hockey had seen in decades (if ever). And if a ref gave them three unanswered penalties, you can bet their toothless young captain, Bobby (piece-of-work) Clarke, would give them an earful. And so on. The refs generally buckled and let the Flyers dictate the tempo of the game ... and they won a couple of Stanley Cups in the process.

Then the Habs got it together and kicked their ass.
posted by philip-random at 11:01 PM on January 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


(note: it appears Wikipedia disagrees with me, but that's the context I've been seeing it in.)
posted by Malor at 11:01 PM on January 2, 2010


The first major thing that confuses and disturbs me about this sort of thing is that Obama, like Clinton in the 90s, has gone out of his way to not do anything too liberal, appeasing the right-wing with compromises left and right and generally pissing off a lot of the people who voted for him by being way too weak on their issues, and yet those on the right seem certain that he's got nefarious plans in action to swing the country into godless communism. This is clearly bred out of blind hatred, but is also clearly a fucking fever dream, so far removed is it from anything approaching reality.

The second thing is that this kind of hatred is what I felt during the Bush administration, and so I'm now concerned about how much I imagined about what they were doing/capable of doing was similarly fantastic.

And then I realize that the dems bent right over for Bush, which the GOP has not done for Obama, and certainly didn't do for Clinton, but still I worry about my own paranoia in the past. Sometimes.
posted by Navelgazer at 12:29 AM on January 3, 2010 [5 favorites]


Chun Li needs this to catch M.Bison.
posted by elemenopee at 12:39 AM on January 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


Does this involve David Bowie?
Yes, and not just any David Bowie. We're talking a full-on Thin White Duke-era Bowie, so coked to the gills that he can't even hold the gun straight as he drags innocent Americans out of their homes and forcibly gay-marries them to each other.

And now he has diplomatic immunity.
posted by strangely stunted trees at 12:49 AM on January 3, 2010 [19 favorites]


The second thing is that this kind of hatred is what I felt during the Bush administration, and so I'm now concerned about how much I imagined about what they were doing/capable of doing was similarly fantastic.

There's a world of difference between what Bush actually did and what these screeching harpies claim Obama is going to do.
posted by trondant at 1:18 AM on January 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yes, and not just any David Bowie. We're talking a full-on Thin White Duke-era Bowie, so coked to the gills that he can't even hold the gun straight as he drags innocent Americans out of their homes and forcibly gay-marries them to each other.

Can this be the next reality TV show? I'd take that over Project Runway any day. /derail
posted by WidgetAlley at 2:42 AM on January 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


political capital joke
posted by hamida2242 at 3:23 AM on January 3, 2010


Chun Li needs this to catch M.Bison.

Which is exactly why we should oppose this. Don't you think Raul Julia's been through enough?

what with being dead an' all...
posted by Limiter at 6:44 AM on January 3, 2010


Jesus, do conservative peepants ever get sick of being terrified by everything?

No more or less than liberal peepants.


Yes, because it was liberal peepants who started two wars over their fear of terrorism, and it was liberal peepants who blew up the Alfred P. Murrah Building over their fear of government encroachment, and it's liberal peepants who proudly turned America into a torture state and defended spying on its own people over their fear of Al-Qaeda, and it's liberal peepants who want to make new rights-blocking constitutional amendments because of their fear of gay people.

They're not the same, and I'm sick to death of the self-congratulatory "look how above the fray I am" attitude that they are.
posted by Legomancer at 7:07 AM on January 3, 2010 [17 favorites]


If conservatives haven't done anything wrong, they have nothing to fear from an immune INTERPOL.
posted by DU at 8:43 AM on January 3, 2010 [8 favorites]


Legomancer: "... because it was liberal peepants who started two wars over their fear of terrorism... and it's liberal peepants who proudly turned America into a torture state and defended spying on its own people over their fear of Al-Qaeda... "

Yeah! They didn't do any of those things! They only acquiesced in them!
posted by Joe Beese at 9:24 AM on January 3, 2010


Yeah! They didn't do any of those things! They only acquiesced in them!

Well, the alleged liberals in Congress did. Their constituents just banged their heads on the floor.
posted by Legomancer at 9:27 AM on January 3, 2010


There is no difference -- none -- between Pat Buchanan and Dennis Kucinich. After all, neither of them are anarchists.
posted by Flunkie at 9:28 AM on January 3, 2010 [12 favorites]


As far as I know, I haven't been arrested by INTERPOL.

THAT'S HOW SECRET THEY ARE
posted by Bokononist at 10:05 AM on January 3, 2010 [5 favorites]


But if Interpol doesn't have diplomatic immunity, how will they bust the future offshore sex slavery markets run by libertari...oh.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 10:44 AM on January 3, 2010


Everything Obama does irks conservatives. Why should this non-story be any different?
Yeah, this. If Obama had refused to grant Interpol the immunity, the right-wing media would be shrieking about how he's against law and order and wants to help his criminal buddies.


"right wing media" is looking for a reason to shriek. Look at Glenn Beck - called the Paul supporters nuts back in the day, but now embraces the same group with the tea parties. The tea party message on taxing/spending excess would exist if there was no President Obama but the tea parties would not have gotten the same press coverage/press support.

We already grant these powers to Blackwater/Xe, as we found out during Hurricane Katrina.

And one set of the complainers about Blackwater are complaining about this executive order for the same reason - giving over the monopoly of violence that State has to non-State actors. At least they are being consistent.

In my experience "statism" is code for "BUT I DON'T WANT TO PAY TAXES".

Its also been code for racism or the crazy people who want to try and localize government to the state level where they think that the citizens will have more control than in DC. Silly citizens.
posted by rough ashlar at 11:15 AM on January 3, 2010


the crazy people who want to try and localize government to the state level where they think that the citizens will have more control than in DC.

Which has, historically been so that the big bad federal government can't make us white folks mix with the negroes.
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:31 PM on January 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


I think this is the moment where American conservatives stop making me rage and start making me laugh again.
posted by tehloki at 3:41 PM on January 3, 2010


Cue Glenn Beck crying.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:39 PM on January 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


"This is not a joke nor a false warning."

I've found that nearly any correspondence that contains a line like this almost certainly is one or the other, if not both.
posted by quin at 10:20 AM on January 4, 2010


Jesus, do conservative peepants ever get sick of being terrified by everything?

On the one hand, this is very true. Keeping their base scared of shadows is the conservatives' bread and butter these days.

On the other hand, Metafilter just spent eight years creating 200-comment threads full of fear and horror in response to the Bush administration's every move. Now much of that was far more justified than the kinds of ridiculous death-panel scares the right has been bandying about, but there's it's hard to deny that liberals are also strongly tempted by the entertaining thrill of fearing and hating their enemies.
posted by straight at 12:50 PM on January 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Chun Li needs this to catch M.Bison.

Or Vega, depending on the locale.
posted by Dr-Baa at 2:04 PM on January 4, 2010


This is nothing.
'cos I heard the Obama Administration has taken the first major step in a plan to ban all firearms in the United States!!!!!!!!
Although it aggravates me that there is room for criticism of the Obama administration and the only high profile that gets are left wing nuts with pet causes and this minutiae fixated idiocy from the right.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:22 PM on January 4, 2010


Its also been code for racism or the crazy people who want to try and localize government to the state level where they think that the citizens will have more control than in DC. Silly citizens.

Not everyone (or even most) people in the conservative movement are racists. Calling your polictical opponents that pretty much ends the conversation and reduces it to name calling. You get to be right, they get to be wrong. You Win.

There is a real argument to be made for a limited federal government (i think it is the ninth amendment, maybe the tenth) that has nothing to do with racism. There should be an ongoing conversation about the appropiate role of government, its actions and its responsibilities (and those of citizens). Just shouting republicans are wrong because they are racists is not productive, anymore than actual racists shouting Obama is going to be the end of this country because he is black. If they are saying he will be the end of the country due to policies (like the executive order being discussed) that opens up the conversation, like asking them what the danger is? what actually happened?

Yes I do this all the time, some people respond to it, some just get pissed off. BTW being right this way is much more satisfy than name calling(if just as juvenile) It is hard to think, to reason, to question your beliefs, but that is the price for being a citizen of republic.
posted by bartonlong at 5:18 PM on January 4, 2010


I had a friend, whom I lost touch with after she was sent on investigation for INTERPOL a couple of years ago. When Boy was a toddler, she sent the smallest IPol shirt they had as a present. Now that he's 7, it about fits. He calls it his "supercop" shirt. I say this apropos of nothing other than to say that every time I see either the shirt or the word INTERPOL, I think of Beth. I miss her and wish I knew what happened.
posted by dejah420 at 8:18 PM on January 4, 2010


There is a real argument to be made for a limited federal government (i think it is the ninth amendment, maybe the tenth) that has nothing to do with racism.

Possibly there is. But there is no point listening to an argument being made for a limited federal government by anyone who also votes Republican. And claiming that the case is for a limited federal government is claiming that there's someone out there arguing for an unlimited federal government.
posted by Francis at 3:48 AM on January 5, 2010


^ 'Beth' is now working undercover as the Madame in a Turkmenistan bordello. If she contacts you, she will have to kill you and your 4 closest relatives.)
posted by vhsiv at 2:57 PM on January 5, 2010


but given that he/she works for a police organization it's almost assured they'll be prosecuted somewhere.

Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

I needed a good laugh today, thanks!

Cops prosecuting other cops... lol, that's a good one.
posted by TheFlamingoKing at 2:24 PM on January 6, 2010


« Older For the man who has everything:...   |   Most of... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments