Posted tagged ‘politics’

“Supreme Disgrace”

October 11, 2007


The Supreme Court recently refused to hear the case of Khaled al-Masri – the Lebanese-born German citizen who was kidnapped, deported, detained, and tortured by the CIA on the suspicion of being linked to al-Qaeda before eventually being released in a remote village of Albania – on the grounds that trying the case would risk the exposure of government secrets.

 Read that one more time. Then read this great editorial about it in the NYT.

The Supreme Court, whose main function to judge the fairness of legislation and keep the Executive powers from operating outside the law, refuses to grant a man a fair trial because the case might expose the secrets of the PARTY WHO ALLEGEDLY  COMMITTED THE CRIME, in this case, the US government.  So whenever the US government commits a crime it can get off the hook without so much as a trial because the actions of this entity are to remain confidential?  Remain confidential from whom?  American citizens, for the whom the government was built to serve and protect, and answer to when it operates outside the scope of the law of the land?  The law designed to protect state secrets in trials was not meant to serve as a basis to avoid even granting a trial.  I get the feeling that if this guy were an American citizen, this story would be getting a whole lot more press.  But since he was just some Arab German, the fact that his life was destroyed is apparently of much less consequence.

  khaled-al-masri.jpgKhaled al-Masri 

This is a perfect illustration of how the blanket defense of protecting state secrets and preserving “national security” has come to be unabashedly abused by the Bush administration.  What secrets are at stake here?  Secret prisons owned by the US in remote areas that operate outside the law?  The physical and psychological torture of detainees?  These ‘secrets’ are illegal not only in the realm of International law, which the US always seems to disregard when inconvenient, but also in the eyes of are own constitution.  THEY SHOULD BE EXPOSED.  That no Justices so much as rendered a dissenting opinion is disappointing and inexcusable.


As someone who once held the Supreme Court in high esteem for its ability and willingness to defend against the abuse of legislative and executive powers in the past, I am embarrassed and indignant by this travesty. 

freedom of the press should be banned

October 4, 2007


Other than the NYTimes, which at least outwardly bares the semblance of an objective publication, the other NY newspapers are tabloids that i wouldnt wipe my ass with.  I hate them in every way, and anyone who puts any stock into anything they read in the Post or Daily News other than for entertainment purposes on a train ride should be pimp slapped.

The way these publications covered the visit of Ahmadinejad was just embarrassing.  Every story they published about it was more akin to a journal entry, a rant based on some personal bias, or more often, an attempt to capitalize on the raw emotions of an embittered public by discerning what they felt most strongly about and then inflaming their fervor by dramatizing the story and masquerading their opinions as matters of fact. 

I know that no news publication is perfect, but why can’t the news just be the news?  Crazy idea, no?  Don’t tell me your opinion, just do your best to tell me exactly what happened and let me connect the dots myself.  I don’t care if you think Ahmadinejad is the devil incarnate, Daily News.  And I don’t appreciate you taking up my entire sports section a few months ago with “detailed coverage” of Alex Rodriguez’s supposed affair with an ugly man-looking stripper, New York Post (that story got the back AND front cover of the Post; the title was “STRAY-ROD”).  If I want to read a tabloid I’ll read People or the Enquirer, which at least have the decency not to operate under the guise of newspapers, and cover more interesting stories like Britney’s stretch marks and Tom Cruise sacrificing his still yet-to-be-seen-in-public love child in the name of Scientology. 


Part of the reason why all this pisses me off is because it’s embarrassing for Americans in the international arena.  Lee Bollinger inviting Ahmadinejad to speak at Columbia, only to introduce him as a cruel and petty dictator?  Why invite a head of state to speak, only to handicap the ability of the audience to impartially reflect on anything he says?  This article from Al Jazeera touches on this subject of how the “US media circus” was met in the international forum.

Also, I don’t think freedom of the press should be banned or curtailed (partly because I have a blog).  But a good bitch slap of these tabloids in the form of a boycott is well overdue.  I won’t hold my breath though…people are idiots.