Saturday, August 30, 2008
Even before the stories were filed on Obama’s elaborately staged and well delivered superficial acceptance speech, McCain trumped the junior senator from Illinois with the history making announcement naming Alaska Governor Palin as his running mate – proving that Democrats are not the only ones who can make history. While the Obama folks expected the media and the public to savor the acceptance speech at least through the weekend, McCain held the exposure to less than 24 hours. By noon on Friday, the speech was old news. It was a brilliant tactical move.
Palin will also be a strong draw for those Hillary supporters, who feel that the ladies have been cheated by the slick talking black dude. This is a net gain. And, judging from the Vogue cover, a lot of Democrat guys maybe jumping ship. All things considered, Palin is the hottest vice president candidate in history.
In picking Palin, McCain made it impossible for the Democrats to chew up the Alaskan governor without eating their young. For the party that claims modern day feminism as one of their defining issues, it was interesting to see how they would maintain the integrity of their cause while vilifying the second female candidate for Vice President – and the first with a real chancing of holding the office.
It was sort of easy to predict their tactic. It is one they have used against African Americans who do not stick to the liberal, welfare-is-good party line. They simply declare them to be apostates. In the case of black conservatives, they are “uncle toms.” When the very African American Congressman Gary Franks (R-CN) was elected to Congress, the all liberal -- and hitherto Democrat -- Black Caucus” barred him from membership. He was not black enough for them. When the courts said the Caucus had to admit him since they were really a tax-free not-for-profit public corporation, they disbanded the group. In liberal America, blackness is an opinion, not an ethnic reality.
In the case of Palin, they are saying, “Women, yes, but not THAT GIRL. (I can hear the old Marlo Thomas television theme song playing in my ear). These kinds of reactions are always good reminders that the feminism movement that dominates the headlines and public discourse, is NOT about women. No. No. No. Modern day feminism is limited to the issues and personalities advanced by the liberal ladies of the Democrat party. Glass ceiling shattering is only allowed for those women with liberal credentials and agendas.
With Palin as the candidate, the vice presidential debate suddenly poses a problem for Joe Biden. Obama was figuring on have old Joe be a junkyard dog, sinking his teeth into the hind quarters of any one of the touted white male Republican contenders. As is often the case, the presence of a woman can turn the fiercest hound into a lap dog. If Biden gets too tough on the gentler sex, he will come across as a bully. He might as well go to the debate in a Marlon Brando “wife beater” undershirt. On the other hand, a woman “standing up” to a man wins a chorus of “atta girl”s.
The criticism I enjoy the most is Palin’s alleged “lack of experience.” Every time a leading Democrat cites her relative newness on the larger political stage, the name Barak Obama keeps popping into my head. McCain has laid a trap for the Democrats, and they are jumping into it with both feet.
Arguably, Obama does not have much more experience than she does – even less if you match executive experience against legislative experience. She presides over a major government. Obama has never managed anything larger than a small personal staff. Now if you have inexperience on the ticket, is it better to be lacking in the Vice President or the President. In a less than subtle move, McCain has shown that the Democrats got the experience requirement backward.
Perhaps the most desperate and idiotic criticism I heard came from David Bender, of (hot) Air America. He blasts Palin because, in his opinion, she does not look like a Vice President. (I am not making this up. Sexist, you say? Shallow, you say? Chauvinistic, you say?) As a woman, is she any more or less vice presidential than Geraldine Ferraro? Oh! I get it. Palin is not eastern seaboard. Not a limousine liberal … hell … not even a liberal. And the Dems wonder why they can’t shed their elitist image? This silly argument doesn’t backfire. It ricochets to Obama. He, himself, said that HE doesn’t look like those guys on the money. (Again, thinking about the Vogue cover ... mmmm .... oh yeah ... Bender is right. Palin most certainly does not look like any previous vice presidential candidate. She's more likely to get wolf whistles than cat calls).
The Obama team gets it. They’re not saying anything negative about Palin, even in the instant response advertising. But those self-appointed Obama’s spokespersons blabbering to the press are falling into McCain’s trap en masse – and Obama is tethered to them like the last mountain climber still on the ledge.
This is just one element in the ill-founded optimism that drives the progressives in the Democrat party to believe victory is inevitable, and a landslide is likely.
Certainly most of the Clinton voters will vote for Obama. They are democrats to the core. More significant, however, will be the percentage of those who cross over to John McCain or stay home on Election Day. I think this percentage will be higher than the liberal pundits believe.
First of all, not all Hillary voters were Democrats. Left-wing pundits have consistently advanced the belief that Rush Limbaugh’s “Operation Chaos” was successful in getting potentially hundreds of thousands of Republicans to cross over in key Democrat primaries to defeat Obama in such states as Michigan and Texas. If their contention is more than political paranoia or baseless banter, they have to know that those folks will be back home in the GOP in November.
Then there is the “bitter women” issue. No matter what Hillary says, a number of her women will be unforgiving of the guy who derailed the first ever woman presidential candidate – and in their minds, the first woman president. From anecdotal reporting, these women are definitely out there, and they are organizing for McCain. McCain’s veep choice will most certainly draw more of them to the Arizona senator.
This gets even more intriguing if you consider the possibility that, despite Hillary’s speech, she is privately signaling her people to defeat Obama to keep open her options for 2012 when there again may be no incumbent running. Rumors are already circulating that Hillary’s brother is a McCain recruiter on the q-t. Hmmmmm! How devious.
Then consider the philosophic issue – and it is not all just about women. Incredible as it may seem, Clinton evolved as the conservative candidate. She was the preferred candidate for the conservatives and moderates in the Democrat party. They are likely to find John McCain’s mushy conservatism more compatible to their views than the radical liberalism of Obama. Sometimes it IS about issues.
Finally, there is the big issue. Racism. I know we are not supposed to address this head on, but here I go. A lot of Democrats … and I mean a LOT … are racists. They were supporting Clinton for one reason. Obama is black, and Clinton is not. If Obama continues to be black in the general election campaign (Hey! If Clinton can become the conservative candidate, anything is possible.), you can expect those people will not like him any more now than they did then.
Let’s assume that McCain picks up a measly five percent of the Clinton voters (and I am betting closer to fifteen percent), that’s close to a million votes (and if I am correct, almost 3 million votes). That’s more than enough to decide the election. (Consider this: In 2000, a switch of only 900 votes from George Bush to Al Gore -- out of more than 100 million cast -- would have put Gore in the White House.)
I suspect that the hard corps Obama insiders, such as the cold and calculating David Axelrod, know the problem. While the enraptured progressive pundits proffer political fantasy as reality, the hard-nosed strategist must be more than a bit concerned.
Seems that the john hired the whore for the usual services – or maybe unusual services, I really don’t know – but regardless, at the end of the performance of service the guy pulled out a gun and demanded that she perform similar services on some of his friends without further compensation. (Where these guys standing around watching?)
Now, I know a lot of feminists have a rather expanded definition of rape (unless committed by liberal Democrat politicians). I have heard, with my own ears, a National Organization of Women activist say that construction workers giving the “wolf whistle” to boob and bum emphasizing women is “tantamount to rape”. Personally, I think her comment is tantamount to man-hating hyperbole.
I am just not politically correct enough to equate the action of our john, as bad as it was, with the guy who drags an innocent co-ed into the bushes and brutally beats and assaults her, or the pervert who lures an 11-year-old into his rusty van to force her to perform oral sex. I sort of like the theft of service angle.
I suppose it is possible to rape a prostitute in the midst of her rendering some service, I’m just not sure how that happens. Let’s say a guy agrees to pay the hooker for the service de jour. She performs, he gets full satisfaction. After the fact, he refuses to pay because he is a jerk. Did he commit rape? Or was it a theft of service? And, can you even steal an illegal service? That is what the judge was grappling with.
Lets look at it another way. Is it possible to grab a prostitute on the street, force her to provide any one of her standard services, and then avoid a rape charge by giving her $100 after the fact?
This also makes me wonder whether a john is obligated to pay if the services were unsatisfactory, or not performed properly. What if, at the climax of the encounter, he did not? When I worked as Sears we had a “satisfaction guaranteed or your money back” policy. Does that apply to the sex trade? I assume you are starting to appreciate the importance of these questions.
Maybe we should ask Eliot Spitzer for his professional opinion on this matter. Not only is the former Governor of New York, and a one-time federal prosecutor, but he was a regular procurer of prostitutes for personal pleasure.
(The way Democrats handle sex scandals, I’m surprised Spitzer was not on Obama’s short list for Vice President. To what am I referring? Think Bill “nothing like a good cigar” Clinton, Ted “the champion of Chappaquiddick” Kennedy, Gerry “thank heaven for little boys” Studds and Barney “pimps on the public payroll” Franks. Despite MAJOR scandals, all these guys continued to receive homage from their Democrat colleagues.)
But, I digress.
So where are McCain and Obama on this issue? I suspect these questions could affect more people than all the house foreclosures and bankruptcies combined. Geez! Sometimes our leaders have no sense of priorities.
Friday, August 29, 2008
Whatever you call it, it is more bad new for Obama. He only moved up a couple points -- reinforcing my contention that this election is already over. Even more surprising, Obama did not even move temporarily over the 50 percent mark.
I do have a disclaimer. The poll was after the convention, but before the grandiose acceptance speech, which got universal acclaim -- at least in terms of style and delivery. I suspect Obama may enjoy a few days in the majority end zone of popular opinion after that speech -- depending on how much wind John McCain zapped out of Obama's sails with the GOP vice presidential announcement. McCain cleverly cut in front of Obama in the media line for the widely read and viewed weekend news.
Whenever we think that movie star endorsments should be taken seriously, something happens to remind us that their opinions are formed in a world fantasy more often than not with the help of reality distorting drugs. To wit: At the recent Democrat convention, actress Dana Delany (right) was asked who she hoped to meet as she traveled the cocktail party circuit. She was hoping to run into Mayor John Lindsay (left) of New York. Uh. Hmm. Maybe someone should tell her that -- and break it to her gently -- John Lindsay (A) was a Republican, (B) was the FORMER mayor of New York (by many years - 1966-1973), and I say "was" because (C) he has been dead since 2000.
Maybe she remembers Lindsay from some movie portrayal. It isn't all that easy for those folks to distinguish fact from fiction.
The second obvious thing was that unvarnished liberalism won’t sell. For the most part his I-love-America, family values, strong defense rhetoric could have been more convincingly and credibly delivered by Ronald Reagan.
Third: For who how are not hopelessly partisan, or overtaken by oratorical twinkle dust, the speech was without much substance. Obama can certainly sell it, but there was no “it.” From his Corinthian coronation staging, Obama basically promised to solve every problem affecting the American people without the slightest hint of wherewithal. It was an impossible, and sometimes conflicting, litany of change.
He will end the war that is on schedule to end. He will devote more resources to Afghanistan, without an objective or end date. He will naively negotiate-only to keep Iran out of the nuclear family. He will provide massive cut taxes while delivering devastatingly expensive social programs. He will end the economic downturn … lower gas prices. Parting the sea is stage magic compared to his self-implied abilities. If you personally have a problem, Obama, personally, will solve it.
Once you strip away the well executed pretty words, you are left with an inexperienced executive looking to get hired for the most important executive job in the world. Once you remove the “I love America” sheep skin, you find that same old fanged wolf of big government liberalism, with its nanny state agenda, trade protectionism and social Balkanization..
Should he be elected, Obama may have foredoomed his own administration. Like the democrats who took over Congress in 2006, Obama has clearly promised more than he can deliver. As the saying goes, “he is a very promising candidate – promising everyone everything.
The history of the world is replete with charismatic leaders who could move audiences to a frenzy of passion. The results of their ascendency has rarely been good. In speech-making, substance without style is boring. Style without substance is dangerous. Obama offed hope without much hope – and change we can believe in, but will never see.
Maybe the public expected too much of the man who, by Hillary Clinton's assessment, got on the road to the White House from the thrust of one good speech.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
From the fever swamps of the blogosphere to the halls of academia, there is a chorus of voices who have come to the same conclusion about the presidential election: Barack Obama is going to win in November, by something resembling a landslide. DAVID PAUL KUHN -- Politico.com
So sayeth the liberal establishment.
The radical left gabbers and scriveners, such as Tom Press and Bob Cesca, are mentally becalmed in one of two political doldrums. They either remain bewildered over Barack Obama’s apparent inability to break away from the hapless John McCain in the major polls … or … they stagnate in their belief in the certainty of Obama’s election – a landslide no less. For the latter, it is neither a theory nor a dream, but a self-induced inevitability.
Their optimism is buoyed by the uncritical and ever-praising pronouncements and opining of the major news media and entertainment industry. To their fault, they fail to recognize that the applause of Hollywood and the prophecy of the pundits are no more than the returning echos of their own overly optimistic and fatally biased voices.
For all the hoopla, optimism, attempts at self-proving prophecy, and down right stupidity, one fact remains. Obama is NOT winning. Even if you take the race today, and trust the polls, the junior senator from Illinois is basically tied with the much derided and dreaded McCain. Day-by-day the candidates merely switch places within the indecisive margin of error.
If you apply past trends and a bit of common sense, the real questions are: Has Obama already lost? Is the presidential race over?
In other words, “decision ‘08” may be in the can already. The voters may already have made up their minds, and it is only for us to wait out the remainder of the campaign until they can turn their private opinions into cast ballots that can be gathered and counted.
There is a point in Bridge where the outcome of the game can be deduced even though there are several tricks to be played out. Those unfamiliar with the game may see uncertainty in the remaining plays, but seasoned bridge players see the inevitable result. We may have reached that point in the 2008 presidential campaign. While we must play out the hand through the conventions and General Election, old political bulls can foretell the results – assuming the remaining cards a played properly.
It may not appear that way on the surface. After all, Obama and McCain are running neck and neck -- usually somewhere in the mid-40s. There are, however, a number of indicators that Obama has lost the election, needing only the vote count to confirm that fact.
1. The most ominous sign is that despite Obama’s unprecedented promotional media publicity (we should not call it “news” anymore), he cannot edge over the 50 percent mark – ever. As I noted in a previous blog, Democrats generally require a substantial lead at this time in the election cycle to stave off the traditional GOP last minute surge. There is no reason to believe that the surge will not happen this year.
2. The percentage of undecideds is comparatively small. So, where those undecideds decide to come down is rather important. History tells us they are mostly going to McCain.
3. Then there is the Bradley Effect, which suggests the black candidate will not do as well among non-blacks as the polls indicates. Seems people fib to the pollsters when asked if they intend so vote for the African-American candidate. This is especially true if the pollster is black, which often is the case. More bad news for Obama.
4. While Obama has enjoyed the luxury of avoiding tough issues in the primaries, he is already seeing the negative impact of closer scrutiny. His borderline socialist platform will not fare well with the mainstream voters. His Middle East policy is in shambles. Its an unconditional pull out of Iraq, a build up in Afghanistan, and no idea what to do about Iran. Unconditional troop withdrawal is another word for surrender, and the public sees no need or desire for that. He opposes the popular public will to start drilling for oil in Yosemite Park, if necessary. His legislation to commit hundreds of billions to “solve” world hunger does not get traction with voters who see enough needs here at home.
5. Obama is also going to get roughed up for his assent through the rank and file of the notorious and corrupt Illinois political environment. His carefully erected façade as a reformer, and agent of change, is shattered by a record of go-along politics in the seedy world of the Chicago machine. While corruption is found by newspapers and the federal prosecutors under every political rock, Obama has never shown an interest in reforming his own flagrantly flawed political family. Throughout his Illinois state Senate career, he was among the most loyal supporters of the machine.
For his political advancement, Obama accepted its support, benefited from its most infamous denizens, courted its criminals as his closest comrades, doled out taxpayers’ money to friends and allies, and politically endorsed the worst of them. The local old guard is hoping for Obama’s election to rid them of the Patrick Fitzgerald, the independent, incorruptible crusading U.S. Attorney, so they can return to the more salad days of cronyism, nepotism and pay-to-play politics.
Obama’s only U.S. Senate record is the number of votes he skipped. He has been an unapologetic abuser of the controversial “earmark” tradition of doling out pork.
6. When Obama moved to solidify his base in the black community, he caused a counteraction in the non-black community. The more he became perceived as the candidate of “his” people, the more he drove the non-black constituencies into the McCain camp. The problem for Obama is that this process is ongoing -- likely to continue through Election Day. Obama’s defeat will undoubtedly bring outrage from the elements in the black community. There will be charges of racism. In truth, any group that votes up to 90 percent for a candidate based on their common ethnic ancestry has no credibility in accusing anyone of racism.
7. There is no doubt that Obama is woefully inexperienced and too far to the left for the average American voter. Whether he can supersede these deficiencies with platitudes and personality is the critical question. More likely his inexperience will be more glaring and his philosophy and platform more obviously unexceptable in the post-convention period. .
8. Despite the kissy face appearances on the dais, the schism between the Obama and Clinton camps has not been bridged – and will not be completely. Because they are Democrats, a lot of Clinton supporters stick to the party line for pollsters and public consumption. What they do in the voting booth is another matter. They know Hillary’s next best chance is 2012. An open nomination is in her best interest. While the percentage is debatable, there is no doubt that McCain will be harvesting from Hillary’s fields.
9. Then there are some interesting anecdotal indicators. Every day, AOL asks a campaign related question. Day after day, the answers weigh heavily against Obama – often by wide margins. It is not scientific, but the consistency of anti-Obama results and the spread in favor of McCain have to make you wonder. While most candidate-bashing books rarely find readership beyond the partisans and zealots, “The Case Against Obama” has soared to the number one best seller in the country. According to one report, the sale of anti-Obama message t-shirts are now outpacing the pro-Obama
All these seem to be minor phenomena, potentially moving only low single digit percentages – maybe even fractions of percentages. But, keeping in mind that we are a nation precariously divided, this election could be decided bye the slimmest of percentages.
While the Obama supporters are basing their claims of a landslide victory on the level of publicity, the smart money is betting on the only thing that counts – the voters. Obama will not win or lose on the basis of some grand consensus. Most likely, his much-touted victory will slip away almost imperceptibly over the next 80-some days. This year’s “October surprise” may be the emergence in the national polls of John McCain as the pre-emptive front-runner.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
His critics are dismissed without consideration as heretics and apostates. He is declared and praised in biblical proportions. The attempted canonization of the candidate is so obvious and flagrant that it is satirized in parodies of every sort, from television skits to political cartoons.
The problem is the difference between a true messiah and a politician with a messianic complex. Messiahs, meaning truly religious personalities of historic proportions, are few and far between. Those with messianic complexes appear all too frequently. They come to fame as those heads of state who engage in self-deification, such as Sadam Hussein and Haile Selassie. Those afflicted with a more secular strain of the “complex” are found among the most mesmerizing and infamous tyrants of our times, such as Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin. At the fringe, they are the tragic cult leaders, such as Jim Jones and Charles Manson.
Outside the example of tiny Vatican City, where the state and the church are co-joined, theocracies appear to join all other autocracies as largely dangerous institutions.
In times of uncertainty and travail, it is common for a people to turn to the charismatic orator – the spellbinder – relinquishing good judgment for … yes … blind faith. Unfortunately, it never leads to a good outcome. Granted, Americans are not living in mortal fear. Our condition is not desperate. We are not a messiah-seeking people as yet. It is still conceivable, however, to “fool all of the people, some of the time.” In the case of the Obamites, they are hoping to fool only 51 percent of the electorate through the pontification of platitudes that is now the defining characteristic of the Obama campaign.
Like all “messiahs,” Obama transcends geography. In a revealing moment, he used his speech in Germany to declare himself a “citizen of the world.” In his feigned humility, he places himself above mere head-of-state. His kingdom is larger than America. This gets reflected in his one rare legislative initiative that promises to redistribute the wealth of his people to the world in the form of the $800 billion Global Poverty Act.
The pathology of politician-cum-prophet is that it requires our surrender of rational judgment. Faith by its very blindness requires belief over analysis. In suspending judgment, we inevitably suspend our rights and freedoms. The false messiahs amass the judgmental power with the promise perpetual happiness. We need not struggle because there is a greater power that will care for us without the need of personal enlightenment, specific knowledge or even voluntary assent. We have the perceived benefit of a loving lord and master.
In the case of Obama, his appeal is a promised sovereignty over the kingdom of government, and the deliverance of its “blessings” to his people. He will use the collection plate at the great Capitol Cathedral to offer promises of healing for the ailing, comfort for the sorrowful, shelter for the homeless, food for the hungry and peace for the conflicted. He is a bit short on smiting evil, however.
Strip away the theological lamb skin and the religions allusions, and you find nothing more than the sharp-fanged wolf of extreme liberalism. Though well beyond implimention, Obama hopes that his well articulated unaccountable promises will carry him into office.
The problem with messianic leaders is that you wind up living in their church, whether you like it or not. We lose even the freedom of religious choice. In politics, when fans become followers, and supporters become disciples … be afraid, be very afraid.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
I think when we need critical, life-saving information from maniacal terrorists who slaughter children, decapitate prisoners for showing on You Tube and blow up shopping markets to make sure they kill families -- aaaaaand who think these atrocities will get them any number of horny virgins for their eternal gratification – the information is not likely to be gotten by simply giving them a piece of paper with ten pertinent questions, like some high school exam. Nor do I believe that they will be induced to spill the beans on the next terrorist attack by making their stay in military custody comparable to a weekend at a Comfort Inn. Appealing to their conscience is as likely as finding Sharon Stone's panties. There is no such thing.
Sooooo … how do you get the information?
Only two ways. Either you start hurting them until they are crippled, mutilated or dead, or you credibly and literally scare the shit out of them without doing permanent harm. That’s it. Take your choice. Now I personally think a mix of fear and pain without permanent disability is about the right place to be.
This brings me to the “standing room” only prison chamber** and waterboarding. These are getting a lot of criticism from the Amnesty International crowd. And for what?
The “standing room only” prison cell forces the incarceree to stand for as long as he is locked in place – sometimes for many hours. Now that may not seem like much of a torture (and I personally think it is not), it does get pretty damn uncomfortable and, yes, even painful. According to studies, however, no one made to endure this little information gathering technique has ever died or been seriously injured.
As an alternative to the tall small cell, we could just hire them as sales clerks, who stand on the feet for hours. Hey! Then we could make all those guys wear high heels. Oh. But that would insult their dignity. According to the feel good torture crowd, insulting dignity is another offense against mankind. Let me remind you again. These are the folks who blow up children. How dignified is that?
Waterboarding is a technique that triggers some sort of fear-of-drowning reflex. You tie the guy down (almost never women), place a towel over his face and pour water over the towel. Again, it is a technique that does not produce injury or death. There have been reports of a couple heart attacks, but I say every profession has its risks, and terrorism should not be exempt.
By the way, this is also the technique my mother used to rinse my hair when I was a wee toddler. I was made to hold the terry cloth rag over my eyes and face as she poured clean water over my soapy hair. Maybe that's it. We soap up there hair first and just call it a CIA shampoo. That way, instead of torturing them, we are actually pampering them. The libs ought to like that ... eh?
Just so you understand just how dangerous and horrific waterboarding is, consider this. The producer of a movie that will include a waterboarding scene under went the experience to better understand it. Promoters of a so-called waterboarding “thrill ride” at Coney Island will hype their enterprise by subjecting themselves to the technique on stage for the entertainment of the audience.
(This gives me an idea. Why don’t we subject terrorists to an endless loop ride on the “Superman” rollercoaster at Six Flags, or more appropriately the “Tower of Terror” at Universal Studios. No…no. Better yet. Strap them to the seat and run them through Disney’s “It’s a Small World” ride until the crack. I am betting that by the third time they beg for waterboarding.) If waterboarding was any less scary it would be sanctioned by the teachers’ union as an in-school discipline technique.
I am sorry. I do not think we should give up waterboarding if it gets the information we need. I suspect there are a few even scarier techniques on the torture no-no list that I would have no compunction using on these reprobates. Whatever happened to The Rack? How about what Jesse Jackson proposed doing to Barak Obama (cutting off his nuts, if you missed the controversy). I say, if it is good enough for the civil rights movement, it is good enough for international terrorism. As an added benefit, it would drastically cut done on the number of future generation terrorists.
Liberals always resent our attempts to impose American-style democracy and culture on other nations. They think we should respect their autocratic customs. Since liberal ideology leans toward centralized government power, this makes some sense. But then why do they get their hemp undies in a bunch when we talk about turning all the prisoners over to Iraqi and Afghan police and military authorities to handle the interrogations in the good old Middle East tradition?
I guess all this whining about torture is just the international version of the classic liberal tendency to make victims of the criminals, and criminalizes the victims. People who can be outraged by a Koran in the latrine more than a slashed throat on the telly, or are bothered more by the naked bodies of the bad guys than the dismembered bodies of the innocent … well… they’re just too weird for me.
We also should also keep in mind that “clandestine operations” are meant to be … clandestine. Duh! Espionage always requires the breaking of rules. Who for one minute thinks that we get permission to spy?
In espionage, common sense trumps common law. The world’s spy industry summarily trespasses, steals, kidnaps, kills and even lies. They cannot be effective nor competitive without such superlegal authority. They operate more by license than legality. Our safety is dependent on our folks trespassing, stealing, kidnapping, killing and, yes, even lying better than those other guys. So ... get over it!
And for the record, the United States Constitution does not apply for foreign nationals. They do not have “constitutional” rights … period. And the Geneva Conventions do not apply to terrorists… period. So let’s stop acting like they do. My version of Gitmo is “get mo’ information” and forget the pleasantries.
**Just for your edification, the “stand up” cell is nothing new. It goes back to merry olde England. The colonials imported it to this country and it was used frequently to keep the witches of Salem on there toes.