Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Ali al-Marri Held Indefinitely in America

The New York Times published an opinion the other day about the case in which, for more than five years, the Bush administration has been holding Ali al-Marri, a legal resident of the United States, in near isolation under President Bush’s reprehensible enemy combatant doctrine.

Mr. Marri was arrested in Peoria, Ill., in December 2001 on criminal charges. In 2003, while his criminal case was pending, Mr. Bush designated him an enemy combatant, and he was moved to a Navy brig near Charleston, S.C. For 16 months, Mr. Marri was held incommunicado. During his detention, he reportedly has been subjected to treatment that borders on, or actually is, torture.
That doesn't sound like the America I grew up in. Do you think some of this Executive power will be diminished with the new administration? I certainly hope so.

The Witness L.A. site put it a bit plainer.

Intolerable is exactly the right word. It has been intolerable to have our democracy highjacked by an administration so drunk on its own unchecked executive power that it has crossed a line, the crossing of which, as British historian Andy Worthington put it, “.. cannot be accepted in a nation, like America, committed to basic human rights and the principles of its Constitution.”

REASON NUMBER 4768 THAT WE ARE HAPPY OBAMA WON: Because we will soon have a president who will not repeatedly fill us with shame and dread by imprisoning people without due process.

What do you think? Were the many questionable detentions that took place in the wake of 9/11 justified? Did some hidden good come from them? Were we perhaps spared other attacks as a result of these policies?

Does so much Executive power inevitably get misused? What if Mr. Marri had been a gun enthusiast? If he and his family and friends had been armed to the teeth, legally, would that have made a difference? I read today about how an armed citizenry is what's preventing tyranny. How would that work exactly?


  1. Mike,

    first, I think that the Constitution has been trampled on many times since 9/11. I think intolerable is the right word and our democracy has been high jacked.

    I also think that we won't see a reduction of the Executive power under Obama, just a different direction. I've said it before that both parties want to take away our civil rights, just at different rates and in a different order.

    In many cases, having an armed citizenry won't prevent individual cases from happening. I think that most people are law abiding, most people won't believe it can happen to them, despite evidence to the contrary. Check out David Codrea's War on Guns blog for such evidence.

    I think that there could and should be a point in time where the people say "no more". Reading the history of the Revolutionary War and the Founding Fathers was enlightening. They actually tried to inflame more people into seeing the abuses, to fight the abuses of King George....and still only 3% fought.

  2. Is that where the 3% that Thomas used to talk about comes from?

    It's been coming up on a few threads lately the idea of tyranny coming to America. Do you think it's a reasonable fear that confiscation of guns is in our future? Honestly, to me that sounds paranoid.

  3. It certainly isn't out of the realm of possibility, Mike. Even with the favorable ruling in Heller v. DC, that ruling still hasn't been upheld to any regard.

    Still it appears Obama has been taking a DEEP shift to the right when it comes to all the issues recently. Hell seems right now he's doing everything I'd have expected from MCCAIN right now! With this coupled with the INSANE amount of gun sales going on right now, hopefully Barry will get the message that he didn't run on the 2nd Amendment at all, and it would be in his best interest to leave well enough alone.

    But that would be the smart thing...then again, 53% of the American populous voted for an Uber-liberal young man promising change...and he's certainly given all those people the finger with his cabinet selections and his current stances on the issues.

  4. Mike,

    The 3% comes from the history of the US Revolutionary war. It's been calculated that out of the entire population, only 3% arose in armed rebellion against the British government.

    Today, it is used to indicate those willing to make a stand if, that is a big IF, the government looses its legitimacy. The continued trampling of our rights, all of our rights is the biggest worry right now. You mentioned it in this post.

    I think as in the Revolutionary War, the trigger could very well be when the government tries to take our firearms.

    I am just getting into being a strong 2nd amendment advocate but I have studied history. The overwhelming trend of gun control is well established. Restrictions, Reduction in availability, Registration then almost inevitably Confiscation. The U.K. is a near text book example, one I think many gun grabbers in the US is trying to follow. It won't be under the pretense of stopping a war, but for "our own good" or "getting guns out of the hands of criminals". Isn't that the reason England used?

    Can you honestly say that violence, total violence and crime levels have fallen in England?
    That the average citizen is safer now or has greater rights?

    I was slightly anti to strongly apathetic on this issue until a couple of years ago. Do the research and I almost guarantee you will become an advocate of the 2nd also.

  5. Mike,

    I've used the UK often as an example of out of control government. Here is another example

    CCTV cameras which can 'predict' if a crime is about to take place are being introduced on Britain's streets.

    The cameras can alert operators to suspicious behaviour, such as loitering and unusually slow walking. Anyone spotted could then have to explain their behaviour to a police office....
    Computers are programmed to analyse the movements of people or vehicles in the camera frame. If someone is seen lurking in a particular area, the computer will send out an alarm to a CCTV operator.

    The operator will then check the image and – if concerned – ring the police. The aim is to stop crimes before they are committed. If a vehicle is moving too fast or slow – indicating joyriding or kerb-crawling, for example – a similar alert could be given...
    But the danger is that the innocent could be forced to account for their movements despite doing nothing wrong. Nick Hewitson, managing director of Smart CCTV, which has created the technology, denied it was a further infringement on privacy.

    The Supreme Court found a "right to privacy" and used that to justify abolishing abortion laws....but having people's movements analyzed isn't an infringement on privacy, Thanks but I'll stay in America and keep fighting against things like this..

    What do you think about it?

  6. "You are under arrest for the future murder..." Was that Minority Report with Tom Cruise?

    What they're trying in the UK seems a little Big Brotherish to me. Do you see it as a continuing slide from their gun laws and gun prohibitions? Do you see them heading down a bad road?

  7. A VERY bad road. I currently see the UK as a Police state...but currently as benevolent a Police state as police states can be. They never stay that way, tho, and when the state rises up to enslave the people, the people will have but two choices...Submit, or die.

    This is a HUGE reason why I'd never give up my guns. As benevolent a govenment as we might have now, there is no reason not to think it doesn't contemplate becomming tyranical.

    I think one reason why it hasn't become tyranical yet is because of a well-armed populos. Even if that isn't so, a well-armed populos will certainly prevent any actions of bald-faced tyrany.

  8. Mike,

    Do you see it as a continuing slide from their gun laws and gun prohibitions?

    Absolutely, I see this as part and parcel of their gun control efforts.

    How do you convince people not to fight back, not to use tools to defend themselves? The government tells the people not to worry about crime, they are watching and will respond to every crime.

    Read a few UK newspapers, you'll find people not only being told not to fight back but actively being charged with crimes for fighting back. In the mean time what is the vast number of CCTV cameras being used for; fining people for putting out their trash early.

    Others have called it Big Brother such as Weer'd did, but I think it is more of "Nanny State". Overprotective, government knows how citizens need to live better then the citizens do, reference gun control laws, trans fat bans, smoking bans, seat belt laws.

    Many of the gun control laws have been passed as "safety measures" such as safe storage laws, areas were concealed carry is prohibited.

    Do I think that the UK is on a bad road, absolutely. I agree with Weer'd it is a path of benevolent tyranny, but a tyranny none the less.

  9. If you wish to read my views on the 3% etc, you will be able to find many of them here.