Monday, February 09, 2009
Change you can believe in
This is an old story, but a number of people have alleged that they were kidnapped by the US government and then brutally tortured in overseas prisons. This is a fairly well documented policy called rendition. Hollywood even made a crappy movie about it. Some of these people are trying to sue the companies that went along with this unconstitutional, immoral, counterproductive, and generally all-around bad idea. Despite the fact that there's a 15,000+ word Wikipedia article on it, the Bush administration claimed that talking about it in court would lead to disaster.
Despite demonizing him for it while running for office, guess who apparently agrees?
Even the ACLU is furious:
“This is not change,” [the executive director of the ACLU] said in a statement. “This is definitely more of the same. Candidate Obama ran on a platform that would reform the abuse of state secrets, but President Obama’s Justice Department has disappointingly reneged on that important civil liberties issue. If this is a harbinger of things to come, it will be a long and arduous road to give us back an America we can be proud of again.”
But don't worry. A Justice Department spokesman promises that Obama will be more careful with it:
“It is the policy of this administration to invoke the state secrets privilege only when necessary and in the most appropriate cases..."
Necessary and appropriate? According to who? Apparently not the courts.
When Obama backed down on FISA, I began to suspect that he was playing games. It looks like others are beginning to smell the coffee. It's one thing for Obama to equate McCain with Bush. It's entirely different for the ACLU to do so with Obama.