Thursday, December 20, 2012

Can't decide what to be most mad about this week.

I'm not only referring to Obama's capitulation on Social Security, either. Socratic Gadfly has that topic well-managed. No, this...

We've covered how President Obama needs the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to justify detention powers he has used for the past four years, but there's another reason he needs it: drones.

At the heart of both issues is the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), which gives the president authority "to use all necessary and appropriate force against those ... [who] aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001 or harbored such organizations or persons."

Just go read it. But this development is equally pathetic.

Congress stripped a provision Tuesday from a defense bill that aimed to shield Americans from the possibility of being imprisoned indefinitely without trial by the military. The provision was replaced with a passage that appears to give citizens little protection from indefinite detention.

The amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 was added by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), but there was no similar language in the version of the bill that passed the House, and it was dumped from the final bill released Tuesday after a conference committee from both chambers worked out a unified measure.

Maybe you got that email this morning from Feinstein asking for your help on the assault weapons ban? If you needed a coup de grace, here it is:

According to the new HuffPost/YouGov survey, only 25 percent of Americans said that torture of suspected terrorists who may know details about future attacks is never justified. Nineteen percent said it is always justified, 28 percent said it is sometimes justified, and 16 percent said it is rarely justified. The 41 percent of respondents who said torture is rarely or never justified are outnumbered by the 47 percent who said it is always or sometimes justified.

That "sometimes justified" number will go up after the public gets a few views of Zero Dark Thirty under its belt. Note how Feinstein gets mentioned again there.

So, to recap, my options for outrage are: a) Obama -- and Pelosi -- raising the eligibility age reducing benefits for Social Security; b) Obama signing off on NDAA so that he has legal justification for using drones on Americans; and c) Obama signing NDAA in order to have legal justification to indefinitely detain American citizens.

It would be simple to lament living in a state that already arms teachers at elementary schools, has a populace that chooses to fault Hollywood, video games, and/or the lack of prayer in public schools for shooting massacres -- instead of the obvious proliferation of assault weapons combined with the lowest expenditures in mental health treatment --, finds an easy rationalization for torture at the movies (Hollywood redeemed!), and has a state police force with no qualms about performing body cavity searches of women on the side of the road. But that would be a little too comfortable.

Maybe I'll just wait until the NRA holds its press conference tomorrow and see what fresh bullshit falls out of Wayne LaPierre's mouth. That might very well be the Conservative Douchbaggery of the Week.

Yeah, that's the ticket. I'll just watch Republicans play "Top THIS" for outrageous ignorance. You know that nobody is going to just let Louie Gohmert win for last Sunday.


Gadfly said...

Add to this something to be mad about last week. Holder releasing that "finding" that says the feds can keep a "dossier" on you for up to five years if you do something scary, like hosting a foreign exchange student.

PDiddie said...