Still Hooked On Hopium


Jeralyn Merritt at TalkLeft, a criminal defense attorney and Obama supporter who frequently writes about people who were wrongfully convicted and other abuses of our criminal justice system, casually laid this rotten egg yesterday:

During the presidential campaign, Barack Obama said he would close Guantanamo during his first 100 days in office. This morning, on ABC‘s This Week with Stephanopoulos, he backtracked:

“It is more difficult than I think a lot of people realize,” the President-elect explained. “Part of the challenge that you have is that you have a bunch of folks that have been detained, many of whom who may be very dangerous who have not been put on trial or have not gone through some adjudication. And some of the evidence against them may be tainted even though it’s true.

And so how to balance creating a process that adheres to rule of law, habeas corpus, basic principles of Anglo American legal system, by doing it in a way that doesn’t result in releasing people who are intent on blowing us up.”

Shorter version: It will close at some point, just not as soon as he promised.

She then goes on to ho-hum the news that Obama isn’t interested in prosecuting any Cheney-Bush war crimes either.  Glenn Greenwald gets kinda wordy but he nails it:

What he’s saying is quite clear.  There are detainees who the U.S. may not be able to convict in a court of law.  Why not?  Because the evidence that we believe establishes their guilt was obtained by torture, and it is therefore likely inadmissible in our courts (torture-obtained evidence is inadmissible in all courts in the civilized world; one might say it’s a defining attribute of being civilized).  But Obama wants to detain them anyway — even though we can’t convict them of anything in our courts of law.  So before he can close Guantanamo, he wants a new, special court to be created — presumably by an act of Congress — where evidence obtained by torture (confessions and the like) can be used to justify someone’s detention and where, presumably, other safeguards are abolished.   That’s what he means when he refers to “creating a process.”

It’s not surprising that Jeralyn takes the news that Obama is breaking yet another promise so lightly.  We’re only talking about war crimes, constitutional rights, due process violations, illegal detention and torture.  It’s not anything important like Troopergate.


UPDATE:  Jeralyn has a new post with sensible recommendations for closing Gitmo, leaving her 177 posts short of her Troopergate coverage.

(graphic courtesy of New Hampster)


2 Responses to Still Hooked On Hopium

  1. native1 says:

    I used to really enjoy TL. Then Jeralyn overnight completely did an about face and lost all objectivity. I now find I feel the same way about her that I do about BO, I don’t trust either one of them. I try to give her the benefit of the doubt on her posts about law stuff but I can’t believe her anymore. I hate being suspicious about everyones motives but I find that I am now and have BO to thank. Sux.

    I still enjoy BTD even though I don’t agree with him very often. He stayed consistent throughout.

    Thanks for the links to the Web voting site. This is my first stop when I fire up the old Mac. Yeah I know that is sad to say the least. To have a life that depends on a blogger who part times as a homicidal clown…. :-).

  2. DisenfranchisedVoter says:

    You’ll have to be the Conflucian to visit TL and report back to all of us what Jeralyn is smoking on a daily basis. It’s just like Digby and Taylor Marsh. I can’t trust any of these people again regardless of what happens in the next 4 years. They’ve lost all credibility in my eyes.

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