Thursday, January 06, 2005

Green Meme

Do you think the Democrats spit or swallow? From the AP:

Gonzales Disavows Torture Tactics

"Attorney General-nominee Alberto Gonzales, under sometimes-scorching criticism from senators, pledged Thursday at his confirmation hearing to prosecute prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay and to abide by international treaties on torture.
...
'Torture and abuse will not be tolerated by this administration,' Gonzales told Judiciary Committee senators. 'I will ensure the Department of Justice aggressively pursues those responsible for such abhorrent actions.'"

As MoDo correctly noted in today's Times, the fact that an AG nominee has to actively disavow the use of torture is a pretty good index of how morally bankrupt said nominee is. Not bankrupt enough for our Boys in Blue, however:

"Despite Thursday's criticism, Gonzales is expected to win confirmation when Congress returns after Bush's inauguration. He would be the nation's first Hispanic attorney general.
...
Gonzales, wearing an American flag pin in his lapel, sat alone at the witness table, family members seated behind him in the crowded hearing room. Senators addressed him respectfully as "Judge" - Gonzales is a former Texas Supreme Court justice - but pressed him repeatedly on administration policies.

He refused to back away from his legal opinion to Bush that terrorists don't deserve Geneva Convention treatment if captured by Americans overseas.

'My judgment was ... that it would not apply to al-Qaida - they weren't a signatory to the convention,' he said."

Well, that's certainly consistent with his legal reasoning in the past; as Bush's counsel in Texas, he argued that the state didn't have to observe the U.S.'s commitment to the Vienna Treaties because Texas wasn't a specific signatory to the treaties. Not that anyone thought that this, along with his extensive legacy as Bush's legal buttboy in Texas, would be enough to disqualify him:

"...

Despite their questioning, Democrats showed no interest in opposing or delaying Gonzales, the 49-year old son of Mexican immigrants, from succeeding John Ashcroft as attorney general.


Ashcroft, a former senator from Missouri, was severely criticized by Democrats during his time at Justice.


'In my view, Judge Gonzales is better qualified than many previous attorneys general,' said freshman Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo. "

I dropped e-mails to each of my senators--Jack Reed, a Democrat, and Linc Chafee, a Republican with an identity crisis--asking them to actively oppose Gonzales's confirmation. Chafee's response was the sort of cursory, but polite form letter you'd expect from a senator in response to a scathing e-mail requesting that he castrate one of his own party's nominees. Reed, who is usually a stand-up guy, was quick to emphasize that the President has a lot of latitude in choosing his appointments, but of course he'd keep my thoughts in mind.

You're going to hear a lot of that over the next few days, that part about the "President having a lot of latitude" in choosing his cabinet. It's true, of course, but it's also an obscene rationalization for letting a man whose judgment and integrity are so blindingly poor become the nation's chief law enforcement officer. If a guy with Gonzales's track record goes in, then who exactly are you willing to reject? The slippery slope these guys are sliding down is steep and icy, and it's going to lead to stuff like Mr. Chief Justice Scalia (that's if we're lucky; how does Mr. Chief Justice Thomas grab you?), God knows who else on the Supremes, and countless other judicial cavemen in circuit seats.

So I say, I'm out of this bluestateofmind thing. I came back to the fold last year to help stop the Boy King and his band of Radical Right, Reverse Robin Hood merry men, but no more. Of course, I still have no use for the Boy King and his morally bankrupt cronies, but next time around, I will cheerfully cast my vote for the doesn't-have-a-chance alternative party candidate whose views most closely mirror my own. And please don't lecture me about wasting my vote. It is no longer clear to me that the Democrats are the "least ineffectual" minority party in town, and now they're making a strong case for "least principled."

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

2nd stage of grieving: anger.

We get angry. The anger can manifest itself in many ways. We can blame others for our loss. We can become easily agitated having emotional outbursts. We can even become angry with ourselves. Care must be taken here not to turn this anger inwards. Release of this anger is a far better way to cope with grief in my experience.

Let it out. Go with your feelings. Then take two thorazines and call me in the morning.

8:11 PM  
Blogger Dr. Bloor said...

And if I get all the way to "acceptance," I get an invitation to join the Democratic Leadership Council.

8:30 AM  

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