leaving but the odd holes and corners to me

A summary of the Hamdan decision at SCOTUSblog, Hamdan Summary — And HUGE News

Even more importantly for present purposes, the Court held that Common Article 3 of Geneva applies as a matter of treaty obligation to the conflict against Al Qaeda. That is the HUGE part of today’s ruling. The commissions are the least of it. This basically resolves the debate about interrogation techniques, because Common Article 3 provides that detained persons “shall in all circumstances be treated humanely,” and that “[t]o this end,” certain specified acts “are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever”—including “cruel treatment and torture,” and “outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment.”

Some brief and to the point commentary by The Anonymous Liberal A Stunning Rebuke which includes,

As I read that, it’s virtually dispositive of the administration’s arguments with respect the NSA warrantless surveillance program. If the AUMF doesn’t authorize this type of tribunal, it’s hard to see how it could possibly authorize warrantless surveillance in contravention of FISA.

A frothing at the gills right-winger at PoliPundit (no links to the insane) writes,

This morning, the United States of America signed the instrument of surrender with al Queda and all affiliated terror organizations.

and Poli puts up a quote from another crazy from The Corner,

Make no mistake: if this happens, the Supreme Court will have dictated that we now have a treaty with al Qaeda — which no President, no Senate, and no vote of the American people would ever countenance.

These wingers are a little over the top to say the least; one of the many problems of conservatism is the complete embrace of the chicken-little complex. The decision is based on some complex law, but simply means that we in our conflict with al Qaeda are bound by existing law in the way we conduct military operations ( Poli says he was in the military. How unfortunate for the bright brave men and women who had to serve with him). Terrorists may still be tried by commissions, but must be tried according to the rules of war. It is difficult to take seriously people that don’t think you can battle terrorism without sinking to the level of terrorists. The right’s contempt for military traditions and codes of conduct isn’t the least surprising. To them the military has never been about national defense as much as it has been an expression of nationalistic power and personal issues of insecurity. I am glad to see them being so honest about wanting the U.S. to officially lower its moral standing into the muck of torture, cruelty, kidnapping, and puppet show trials. It is at times like this that I question the traditional labeling as the far right fringe embraces attitudes that would make Joseph Stalin proud.

Noted: Another clog in the wingnuttery blog machine – i.e. The Jawa Report says that he is back to blogging after a quite harrowing ordeal,

After nearly two weeks of fighting a cyberterrorist attack launched by Turkish Islamists, and then wrestling with a new server, The Jawa Report is back!

It is a little odd that these pinnacles of paranoia are always suffering cyber attacks from supposed jihadists (Turkey happens to be a member of NATO). If true it doesn’t speak well for the intelligence of terrorists who deem it necessary to strike deep at the heart of the internets 101st Fighting Hypocrites; who have done as much to fight terrorism as Bin Laden and Bush have contributed to world peace. He is “back!” which means that the Iraqi insurgency is now quivering in its boots, Bin Laden will surrender, and all of America’s children will now have health insurance.

No More Mister Nice Blog takes a look at the rantings of Peggy Noonan who is proof of the adage that if your synapses are glued together with silly putty, but you’re a rich white conservative they will not put you in a padded cell no matter what you say,

Bush the Younger would breastfeed the military if he could.

Well I also feel like a gossip site reporting on the on going feud between reality and conservatives; reality according to conservatives isn’t all it is cracked up to be. That being the case they haven’t come up with any attractive alternatives; then there is their math problems. I’m sure we all sympathize, Real GDP Growth for the Past Two Quarters

Actually, it’s 2.75% for the past 5.25 years and the average annual growth rate for Clinton’s 8-years in office was 3.7%. If the OMB forecast turns out to be right – the average for Bush43’s will be only 2.9%. I do hope Mr. Goldberg realizes that 3.7 exceeds 2.9.

We all know Jonah can’t write, but lacking the cognitive ability to distinguish between single digits is cause for concern. Note: In no way am I suggesting that Peggy The Loon or Jonah Goldenboy not be published, on the contrary making little marks on the pretty paper with their crayons keeps them from causing any real damage.

Pirates pursued democracy, helped American colonies survive

Like the American revolutionaries, pirates developed three branches of government with checks and balances. The ship captain was elected, just as the U.S. president; the pirate assembly was comparable to Congress; and the quartermaster resembled a judge in settling shipmate disputes and preventing the captain from overstepping his authority, he said.

Colonists and pirates also were alike in emphasizing written laws, democratic representation and due process, Acosta said. All crew members were allowed to vote, ship charters had to be signed by every man on board, and anyone who lost an eye or a leg was compensated financially, he said.

A wistful look back at the good old days.

From this habitual precedence of my chimney over me, some even think that I have got into a sad rearward way altogether; in short, from standing behind my old- fashioned chimney so much, I have got to be quite behind the age too, as well as running behindhand in everything else. But to tell the truth, I never was a very forward old fellow, nor what my farming neighbors call a forehanded one. Indeed, those rumors about my behindhandedness are so far correct, that I have an odd sauntering way with me sometimes of going about with my hands behind my back. As for my belonging to the rear-guard in general, certain it is, I bring up the rear of my chimney–which, by the way, is this moment before me–and that, too, both in fancy and fact. In brief, my chimney is my superior; my superior, too, in that humbly bowing over with shovel and tongs, I much minister to it; yet never does it minister, or incline over to me; but, if anything, in its settlings, rather leans the other way.

My chimney is grand seignior here–the one great domineering object, not more of the landscape, than of the house; all the rest of which house, in each architectural arrangement, as may shortly appear, is, in the most marked manner, accommodated, not to my wants, but to my chimney’s, which, among other things, has the centre of the house to himself, leaving but the odd holes and corners to me.

from I and My Chimney by Herman Melville