The Torture Question tonight on PBS by far, television's most in-depth look at how the controversial interrogation policy evolved after a major power struggle within the Bush administration.
(via Rocky Mountain News)
The problem, of course, is that it's often the things we'd rather not think about that we most need to hear, especially when those things are actions taken in all of our names with an eye toward making us safer. Ellen Gray
Watch a preview here
posted by tvgurl
on Oct 18, 2005 -
IRAQ DRAFT BILL OF RIGHTS LEAKED IN ENGLISH
The al-Mada newspaper on June 30 published what is apparently a draft version of the equivalent to the Bill Of Rights that is being worked on by a subcommittee in the Iraqi legislature. Omar from Iraq The Model first reported this on that day and provided his commentary on the document, but ultimately it was too large to translate. Nathan J. Brown of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace provides a valuable public service by translating the entire document, so a big hat tip to him. Let’s take a quick look at some of the features of this bill, as it is very promising although there are some provisions that need much deeper looking into (and others not so much). Nathan also makes thorough observations. You can read it in full here.
posted by Postroad
on Jul 22, 2005 -
While the proverbial road to hell is paved with good intentions, the internal government memos collected in this publication demonstrate that the path to the purgatory that is Guantanamo Bay, or Abu Ghraib, has been paved with decidedly bad intentions. The policies that resulted in rampant abuse of detainees first in Afghanistan, then at Guantanamo Bay, and later in Iraq, were product of three pernicious purposes designed to facilitate the unilateral and unfettered detention, interrogation, abuse, judgment, and punishment of prisoners: (1) the desire to place the detainees beyond the reach of any court or law; (2) the desire to abrogate the Geneva Convention with respect to the treatment of persons seized in the context of armed hostilities; and (3) the desire to absolve those implementing the policies of any liability for war crimes under U.S. and international law.
Regarding the Torture Papers
, which detail Torture's Paper Trail
, and, then there's Hungry for Air
: Learning The Language Of Torture, and, of course, there's ( more inside)
posted by y2karl
on Mar 14, 2005 -
Congressman dies of rare disease
Congressman Bob Matsui, who was recently elected to a 14th term in Congress, has died due to a rare stem cell disease. Matsui, who was one of the leading opponents of President Bush's plan to eliminate Social Security, was the ranking Democrat on the Congressional subcommittee on Social Security.
posted by expriest
on Jan 2, 2005 -
Canadian Tax Dollars at Work
I am sure there are some hard
working Metafilterites out there that could be Canada's official wine co-ordinator. You would have to give wine away to senior politicians and hard stuff like that.
posted by Coop
on Jul 20, 2004 -
The Alexandria Declaration.
Between March 14 and 17, 2004, intellectuals, scholars, economists and activists from around the Arab world met at the new Alexandria Library
in Egypt for the Arab Reform Conference
. Among the recommendations of the conference was that all Arab governments should ratify "all international conventions on the rights of women providing for the abolition of all forms of discrimination against them."
posted by Ty Webb
on Mar 29, 2004 -
Salon has an interesting two part series on the tensions between antiwar protesters and law enforcement. Part 1: "Outlawing dissent:
Spying on peace meetings, cracking down on protesters, keeping secret files on innocent people -- how Bush's war on terror has become a war on freedom." Part 2: "A thousand J. Edgar Hoovers:
State and local police are taking it upon themselves to investigate antiwar activists -- and in the computer age, the threat to our civil liberties is even greater than it was in Hoover's day." Does Protester = Criminal?
posted by homunculus
on Feb 20, 2004 -
Attorney General Is Closely Linked to Inquiry Figures Karl Rove, President Bush (news - web sites)'s top political adviser, whose possible role in the case has raised questions, was a paid consultant to three of Mr. Ashcroft's campaigns in Missouri, twice for governor and for United States senator, in the 1980's and 1990's, an associate of Mr. Rove said on Wednesday. Jack Oliver, the deputy finance chairman of Mr. Bush's 2004 re-election campaign, was the director of Mr. Ashcroft's 1994 Senate campaign, and later worked as Mr. Ashcroft's deputy chief of staff.
No wonder 69% of Americans
think that an independent counsel
should conduct the investigation.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly
on Oct 2, 2003 -
All text is verbatim from senior Bush Administration officials and advisers. In places, tenses have been changed for clarity.
posted by nofundy
on Sep 24, 2003 -
Four 9/11 Widows Demand Truth.
"This is a stonewalling job of far greater importance than Watergate. This concerns the refusal of the country’s leadership to be held accountable for the failure to execute its most fundamental responsibility: to protect its citizens against foreign attack. 'If we have an executive branch that holds sole discretion over what information is released to the public and what is hidden, the public will never get the full story of why there was an utter failure to protect them that day, and who should be held accountable.'"
posted by fold_and_mutilate
on Aug 25, 2003 -
Preparing for War, Stumbling to Peace The Bush administration planned well and won the war with minimal allied casualties. Now, according to interviews with dozens of administration officials, military leaders and independent analysts, missteps in the planning for the subsequent peace could threaten the lives of soldiers and drain U.S. resources indefinitely and cloud the victory itself. Lonely At The Top Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said last week that he hoped to enlist as many as 30,000 troops from 49 nations. The problem, however, is that many of the recruits the Pentagon has tried to line up so far appear to fall into two categories: the not so willing and the not that able. Report: U.S. May Call National Guard for Iraq Duty
- The Pentagon could start a call-up of as many as 10,000 U.S. National Guard soldiers by this winter to bolster forces in Iraq and offset a lack of troops from allies, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. Postwar Window Closing in Iraq, Study Says A team of outside experts dispatched by the Pentagon to assess security and reconstruction operations in Iraq reported yesterday that the window of opportunity for achieving postwar success is closing and requires immediate and dramatic action by U.S. military and civilian personnel. Turning and turning in the widening gyre...
posted by y2karl
on Jul 18, 2003 -
Watch the watchers.
Government Information Awareness:A single, comprehensive, easy-to-use repository of information on individuals, organizations, and corporations related to the government of the United States of America.
posted by srboisvert
on Jul 4, 2003 -
"And mark my words,
the calculated intimidation which we see so often of late by the "powers that be" will only keep the loyal opposition quiet for just so long. Because eventually, like it always does, the truth will emerge. And when it does, this house of cards, built of deceit, will fall." This is Senator Byrd, just a light at the end of a very dark and probably very long tunnel.
posted by acrobat
on Jun 10, 2003 -
The GOP is reportedly [+
] proposing $15 billion of cuts — or is it $25? — in veterans' benefits between now and 2007, and groups like the Veterans Against the Iraq War
are hopping mad. Hell, I imagine the pro-war wing is pretty peeved, too. It's part of a plan with delusions of grandeur
to deliver massive tax cuts AND kill the deficit ... you know, the one that did not exist before W was elected, as I understand it ... in six years. The original tip is from Stand Down
. The actual status of the cuts is nebulous at this point, however, with the SF Chron
reporting that they will likely fail in the Senate as the tax cut is halved and others
reporting that the die is not yet cast. The House budget resolution, for metafilter accountants who like these things, is here
posted by hairyeyeball
on Apr 1, 2003 -
Civil Disobedience-Henry David Thoreau
Nothing in here about blocking traffic but a very important historical document for our time.
"The government itself, which is only the mode which the people have chosen to execute their will, is equally liable to be abused and perverted before the people can act through it. Witness the present Mexican war, the work of comparatively a few individuals using the standing government as their tool; for in the outset, the people would not have consented to this measure."..................
"A democracy, is a progress toward a true respect for the individual. Even the Chinese philosopher was wise enough to regard the individual as the basis of the empire. Is a democracy, such as we know it, the last improvement possible in government? Is it not possible to take a step further towards recognizing and organizing the rights of man? There will never be a really free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly. "
posted by thedailygrowl
on Mar 21, 2003 -
Virtual march on Washington.
"On February 26th, in every Senate office and in the White House, the phones will be ringing off their hooks...Working together, we'll direct a steady stream of phone calls - about one per minute, all day...while at the same time delivering a constant stream of emails and faxes."
posted by gottabefunky
on Feb 25, 2003 -
Florida Machine Records Votes for Wrong Candidate.
OK, I know Matt Drudge isn't exactly a venerated news outlet, but he is
in South Florida. And he's reporting that a West Palm Beach voter called in to a South Florida radio talk show to report that when he voted for McBride this morning the machine counted his vote for Bush. After he'd tried three times, the voter said, an observing poll worker finally acknowledged that the machine would have to be reprogrammed, since earlier voters had experienced the same problem. There is no official confirmation of this problem, but calls to the same radio show two years ago evidently foreshadowed the 2000 election debacle. I'll be keeping an eye on sites like Josh Marshall's Talking Points Memo
as the day wears on. In the end, what should the electorate do (in addition to initiating lawsuits) if outcome-determining irregularities surface in yet another Florida election?
posted by maud
on Nov 5, 2002 -
Administration Says It Can Attack Iraq without Congressional Approval
Not a new story, per se, but this Post article lays out pretty well the arguments behind the administration's case, one being simply Bush's role as commander-in-chief. It's strange how closely this issue reflects earlier attempts by the administration to avoid Congressional and/or public scrutiny (Cheney's Enron meetings, for example). Why this aversion, and why fight so hard? And I have a sneaking fear that Bush will seek Congressional approval only after invading, and he will bully votes by claiming that reps have a patriotic duty to support a president in a time of war.
posted by risenc
on Aug 26, 2002 -
House likely to approve homeland security bill that erodes labor protections
"But the Senate, which likely takes up the matter next week, so far has pursued a much different course. On Thursday, the Democratic-led Senate Governmental Affairs Committee crafted legislation that would protect all current civil service protections and make it more difficult for the president to move workers out of unions. Bush and other Republicans said the measure would give the president less authority than he has now."
The House seems to be so much more conservative and extremist than the Senate. Heck they're still working on trying to ban selected types of abortion procedures
even when there's a strong chance it won't pass constitutional muster and the Senate isn't likely to support them.
Is it your perception that the House is more conservative? If so, why do you think that's true?
posted by Red58
on Jul 26, 2002 -
Non-citizens put on notice to file change in addresses
The Ashcroft Gestapo strikes again!
If a permanent resident doesn't file this change-in-address form, they are talking about penalties up to and including deportion
! Note we aren't talking about student visa holders or anything like that .. we are talking about people who have lived in this country for 10 .. 20 .. 30 years or more in many cases.
This country is really turning into a police state the way things are going.
posted by ssheth
on Jul 23, 2002 -
Jaw-drop-inducing link of the day
The federal government spent $62 million on a building to store and treat low-level radioactive waste at a California nuclear weapons laboratory, then decided the structure wasn't secure enough. So where is the waste kept now?
... Right outside the new building, under tents.
posted by magullo
on Jun 10, 2002 -
Government Will Ease Limits on Domestic Spying by F.B.I.
(NY Times link) As part of a sweeping effort to transform the F.B.I. into a domestic terrorism prevention agency, Attorney General John Ashcroft has decided to relax restrictions on the bureau's ability to conduct domestic spying in counterterrorism operations, senior government officials said today.
Here's the Wash. Post's
take on the story.
posted by Ty Webb
on May 30, 2002 -
Anthrax and the Agency
"Now that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has officially put the anthrax investigation on a back burner, it is time for Americans to think the unthinkable: that the FBI has never been keen to identify the perpetrator because that perpetrator may, in fact, be the U.S. Government itself. Evidence is mounting that the source of the anthrax was a top secret U.S. Army laboratory in Maryland and that the perpetrators involve high-level officials in the U.S. military and intelligence infrastructure."
Granted, there's more than a few blips on the radar screen these days, but...whatever happened to this investigation? I'm no conspiracy theorist, but the case laid out in this piece gives me pause. Any other good theories out there?
posted by martk
on Apr 10, 2002 -
isn't this exactly opposite of what we're being told? I'm always hearing the wealthy are benefitting somehow from GWB's new tax plan. I'm certainly no-where near the top 5%, and now I don't want to be.
posted by the_0ne
on Apr 9, 2002 -