Department of Justice: Home Of The Whopper

“Due process and judicial process are not one and the same, particularly when it comes to national security,” Holder said. “The Constitution guarantees due process, not judicial process.”

With that statement, Attorney General Eric Holder joined the ranks of those who have made the greatest misleading or untrue statements in U.S. history.

“Saddam Hussein has chemical and biological weapons, and he is moving ever closer to developing a nuclear weapon.” – George W. Bush

“I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky.” – Bill Clinton

“I have earned every cent. And in all of my years of public life I have never obstructed justice. People have got to know whether or not their President is a crook. Well, I’m not a crook. I’ve earned everything I’ve got.” – Richard M. Nixon

“I pledged in my campaign for the Presidency to end the [Vietnam] war in a way that we could win the peace. I have initiated a plan of action which will enable me to keep that pledge. The more support I can have from the American people, the sooner that pledge can be redeemed.” – Richard M. Nixon

Those are some big footprints to follow in, and Holder is no slouch when it comes to big feet. And the bigger they are, the harder their illogic reasoning falls to the ground. And this illogical reasoning is a whopper.

Let’s parse his statement. What exactly is “due process” which is guaranteed by the Constitution in both the 5th and 14th Amendments?

Here’s how it’s typically described:

  • Right to a fair and public trial conducted in a competent manner
  • Right to be present at the trial
  • Right to an impartial jury
  • Right to be heard in one’s own defense
  • Laws must be written so that a reasonable person can understand what is criminal behavior
  • Taxes may only be taken for public purposes
  • Property may be taken by the government only for public purposes
  • Owners of taken property must be fairly compensated

This seems to also describe the judicial process, mentioning a fair and public trial by impartial jury and all. But let’s find out for sure, shall we?

The Judicial Process

Article III of the Constitution of the United States guarantees that every person accused of wrongdoing has the right to a fair trial before a competent judge and a jury of one’s peers.

The Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendments to the Constitution provide additional protections for those accused of a crime. These include:

  • A guarantee that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without the due process of law
  • Protection against being tried for the same crime twice (“double jeopardy”)
  • The right to a speedy trial by an impartial jury
  • The right to cross-examine witnesses, and to call witnesses to support their case
  • The right to legal representation
  • The right to avoid self-incrimination
  • Protection from excessive bail, excessive fines, and cruel and unusual punishments

That, folks, is straight from http://www.whitehouse.gov/our-government/judicial-branch

Check it out yourself.

So, the judicial process under the Constitution guarantees US citizens that we can’t be deprived of life and stuff without “due process of law”.  Due process under the Constitution guarantees US citizens that we have the right to a “fair and public trial” which is further expanded on by judicial process. So, in effect, the one is dependent on the other and can’t be separated.

Disclaimer: I’m not a lawyer, have never studied law, and do not pretend to be the high muckety-muck Attorney General of the United States.

And what was this illogic put to use to sell to the American people? That the United States has the right to hunt down an kill any American citizen anywhere in the world that the Government deems his hostile and represents a danger to the safety and well-being of the United States. In other words, if an Anwar al-Awlaki has been paling around with Osama bin Laden planning terrorist attacks against Americans here or in foreign countries but have no legal proof that he personally carried them out, there’s no need to attempt to capture him alive, extradite him back to a federal or military courtroom, prove the charges, and then imprison or execute him.  Nope, the President, acting upon the advice of his security and military advisers can simply order “Take him out”, and one drone bomb later, al-Awlaki is history.

Now, I’m in no way arguing for leniency for avowed terrorist enemies of the United States. If I had lost friends and/or family in the 9/11 attack, or at Fort Hood or aboard an airplane, I’d take a 9mm Glock to the suspected terrorist mastermind who’s an American citizen and first kneecap him and then work my way up.  But that’s me, I’m not the United States government sworn to uphold the Constitution of the United States, so help me God.

This isn’t the first hole the Obama administration has poked in the Constitution. The USA PATRIOT Act, the Military Commissions Act of 2006—which was extended by Congress and Obama, NDAA for 2012, the Espionage Act of 1917 all precede this legal opinion rendered by Holder.

The U.S. Supreme Court has already decided that the police can break down the door to your home to arrest you—based on hearsay or what they might think they overhear outside your home-without a warrant. Even if they have a warrant but that warrant is written incorrectly, as long as the police in their professional opinion think you should have been arrested, that’s just dandy with Chief Justice John Roberts and the gang. So our domestic rights under the Constitution have been steadily eroding since 2001. What the Obama administration is now enacting is the erosion of constitutionally-guaranteed rights to any American citizen at any time anywhere in the world for any reason for an indeterminate length of time. You see, you, an American citizen, can be snatched from the streets anywhere and held in some prison without ever being told why you were snatched and imprisoned. Maybe you don’t get tortured or maybe you do but the Commandant has plausible deniability over knowing about it. Maybe you’re sitting in a Pakistani café and your table explodes, or the waiter slips behind and delivers your check behind your left ear. Or you’re camping in the desert and a drone bomber flies overhead and rains bombs on your picnic.

Yes, realistically speaking, almost none of us will ever experience these scenarios. But this erosion of personal and civil rights has been a common tactic in every country where the democratically-elected government was overthrown and the people subjected to tyrannical rule. I don’t believe that President Obama is a tyrannical dictator—but this is the way it starts too often, with the slow erosion of basic rights with the acquiescence of a people kept so frightened by the enemy boogeyman held up to them by their government they’ll agree to anything to feel safe and protected by that same government.

Eric Holder is wrong, and not nearly enough people in the media are saying so. I would have expected this type of specious argument from Republican Alberto Gonzales, the 2nd Attorney General under Republican President George W. Bush. But not an A.G. under the Democratic President Barack Obama. When the Democrats start to resemble the Republicans, it reminds one of the famous Zen koan, “What is the sound of one political party running America?”

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12 thoughts on “Department of Justice: Home Of The Whopper

  1. G says:

    Great article!

    One clarification… when the Patriot Act came out, it was Republicans acting like Democrats.

    Republicans to that point have always been the party of freedom. .

    • farlefty says:

      Couldn’t agree with you less. Republicans NEVER act like Democrats–always the other way around.

      Republicans have never been the party of freedom. Otherwise they would have proposed the Civil Rights Act. The only freedom Republicans endorse is that for Business to exist unfettered by government regulations by protected and subsidized by that same government.

  2. G says:

    Which Civil Rights Act?

    The final version of the 1964 Civil Rights Act was written by a Republican, Everett McKinley Dirksen, which means that since the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, every Civil Rights Law was written by a Republican with more Republican support than Democrat Support.

    The Republican Party formed to end slavery and did so under the leadership of the first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln. The core Republicans have always wanted what one fellow Republican, Martin Luther King, so eloquently said, we want people to be “judged not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

    A few other things you might wish to investigate… many big businesses love government regulations because they use them to cripple competition from entering into the market. Most career politicians from both parties are in on the game of subsidizing businesses and bailing them out. It is outrageous that they are able to do so. The Tea Party first formed to protest TARP and the first stimulus and bailout under Bush. Then Obama came in and did a 2nd round of it. Both Obama & Bush were for bailing out Detroit.

    You’re writing shows that you are both intelligent and skeptical, so I am confident you will find your way to the truth on your own. And the truth shall set you free.

    • farlefty says:

      Check your facts again. Your version of the story is far simpler than the truth.

      Dirksen did not write it because the genesis of the bill started within the Kennedy Administration. It was first referred to the House and landed with the Judiciary Committee, chaired by Emanuel Celler, Dem., of New York. The only Democratic committee chair to oppose it was the segregationist Dem. Howard Smith of Virginia, who . However, Dirksen was one of group of Senators from both parties who wrote a watered down version so the bill so it could pass both houses.

      Your statement about there being more Republican support is also fallacious. Only the block of Senate Southern Democrats opposed the bill. Dirksen, as a Republican Senator, was brought in to direct the Republican bloc in the Senate to break the Democratic filibuster. The bill was eventually passed.

      As far as calling those Senators “Democrats”, that;s like calling teabaggers in Congress “Republicans”. After the passage of the Civil Rights Act, what were blue states bled red and they remain that way today.

      So your characterization of this being Republican legislation is way off base. Please site your sources if you disagree. And I won’t even begin to debunk your contention that Republicans have written every Civil Rights bill if your intent is to compare Lincoln Era Republicans with the 20th/21st centuries GOP, you are the one who needs to research your facts.

      I will say that your final paragraph is accurate but you seem intent on presenting a false equivalency between Dems and Repubs. I don’t get why you brought up TARP and also the Tea Party. On the whole you are right; however, the Repubs have nothing like the Progressive Caucuses in both houses, which represent the last vestiges of the Dem Party.

      Thank you for your kind words about me. I greatly appreciate you reading my blog and posting comments.

  3. G says:

    You are correct that the bill began from the White House and was rewritten by Dirksen (with the assistance of Democrats). I never stated otherwise. I was accurate when I stated, “The final version of the 1964 Civil Rights Act was written by a Republican”. I am very pleased you researched it. That is my ultimate goal in engaging people in these conversation.

    On a side note, did you know that as a Senator, JFK voted against the 1957 Civil Rights Act under the Eisenhower (R) administration?

    A higher percentage of Republicans supported the 1964 legislation than Democrats. Senate, Republicans 82% support, Democrats 69%. House, Republicans 80%, Democrats 63%. That is the closest the margin had been on any civil rights legislation up to that point in history.

    You can read my own article concerning some of this. I’ve provided other links throughout it:

    http://landofthetea.com/2012/03/03/politics-of-race-part-2-historical-perspective-of-republicans-and-democrats/

    Here are two other sites I suggest:

    http://stolenhistory.org

    and

    http://www.black-and-right.com/2010/03/19/the-dixiecrat-myth/

    The theme of the Republican Party from it’s inception until now has always been about Liberty. The Democrat’s theme has always been about control, whether through oppressive state governments or a federal one.

    You do yourself a disservice using a term like “teabaggers”. It detracts from your credibility. It is a fine line between being passionate and emotional. One can be passionate and still be perceived as being rational.

    • farlefty says:

      Greatly appreciate your response. Since I don’t claim to have total knowledge of this issue, I’m going to check out your article and the other links.

      Yeah, the bloc of Southern “Democrats” were unified in its opposition to the legislation. And as I stated, I believe those states now reside in the Red column thanks to Nixon’s southern strategy.

      I think I read something about JFK voting No on the bill so I’ll also have to look that up. There’s got to be more to the story when a Massachusetts Democrat votes against a civil rights bill. I’d like to see the wording of the bill. However, there’s lots of northeastern Irish still bigoted against minorities to this day. Witness the New York City Fire Department.

      I’ll make a deal with the teabaggers: They start calling the Democrats by its rightful name–the Democratic (as opposed to the Limbaughian “Democrat) Party, and I’ll call them the Tea Party. It’s not my fault that they referred to themselves as teabaggers before they found out the definition of the term which pre-dated them.

      As far as using the term “teabagger” detracting from my credibility, there’s a radio talk show guy named Norman Goldman who is doing very well saying the same thing on his nationally-syndicated show.

      To me, one of the major problems with the Democratic Party is its lack of passion and emotion. Watch Harry Reid talk sometime. The word ineffective milquetoast comes to mind. He’s a joke as Senate Majority Leader.

  4. G says:

    It depends on which version of the “Southern Strategy” you are referring to. Many forms of it are a lie.

    The truth about the 1968 election is Nixon wanted to win the states bordering the edges of the south since the racist George Wallace temporarily broke away from the Democratic (thanks for pointing that out) Party to run as a 3rd Party candidate. Wallace won Arkansas , Mississippi , Alabama , Georgia, and Louisiana. Wallace also drew enough votes away from Humphrey (D) in North Carolina , South Carolina , Florida , Virginia , and Tennessee allowing Nixon to win those states.

    I had researched this before, but when attempting to find those sources, I found another that does a pretty good job of going through it:

    http://blackquillandink.com/?p=6082

    I will concede that the lie has been so effective that there are some who probably are Republicans because they are ignorant racists and are told by the media that this is where they belong. But, they are a small inconsequential minority (no pun intended) within the party.

    What we all need to do is realize that what lingering racism there still is in this country is intentionally being stoked by those with a vested interest in it’s continuation. The Democratic Party has the most vested in it being a major story line. Once we make the decision to treat everyone equally under the law and concentrate on the real issues, we can focus on removing all the career (corrupt) politicians and getting a balanced budget amendment passed. I would hope those are things we can all agree on.

    • farlefty says:

      I looked at that guy’s blog. Have no idea who he is or what he uses for credentials. You may consider this a snarky comment, but I put no credence in anything someone writes if they can’t get simple, basic English grammar right. In discussing the Montgomery, AL vote, he continually wrote “African American’s”. And what is this guy’s POV? I remember Kevin Phillips; he was a longtime syndicated columnist who I considered a moderate. Whoever this blogger is has his own agenda and it’s blaming the Democrats for something but I can’t figure out what it is. He’s a lousy writer.

      Anyway, regarding your previous point about John Kennedy voting against the 1957 Civil Rights Act, my research shows this: in 1957 US Senator JFK had presidential aspirations. He had come from a privileged background where he hadn’t grown up around blacks. The Boston area was heavily Irish and just about as bigoted against blacks as Southerners but not to the extent of “whites and blacks only” separate facilities, at least not formally.

      But that was 1957 JFK. He was a different man by 1961. And people change. The contemporary media is littered with Democratic pundits who used to be Republican. People change.

      I can’t tell if you’re pro or anti Democratic Party. If you’re framing the racism issue that Dems are stoking it, you’re correct in that the Dems are only pointing out the truth. Today’s Republicans are running for office by pimping for votes from racist, sexist, Christian/Catholic voters. They’re praying on their base’s fear of anyone non-white, non-US citizen (even if it’s just the appearance of being foreign), and non-Christian. They’re going after the misogynist voter (including women who apparently hate their own gender) and those who oppose abortion. They’re going after the lowest and stupidest common denominator.

      If you oppose Democrats and are intent on spreading misinformation, we have nothing more to discuss.

  5. G says:

    My intent is promote the truth, freedom, and personal responsibility.

    For full disclosure, I was a pronounced Democrat through most of high school, but a Republican by the time I graduated. I’m inter-racially and happily married to a non-US citizen. (You probably think I’m making this up, but I’m being sincere.)

    I posted that link because I was a little rushed when looking for the sources I had researched before and stumbled across that link. I didn’t focus on the punctuation or the grammar, just the basic content, which he had correct. In researching that link further, that blogger had borrowed most of his post from this column: http://www.pundithouse.com/2011/06/the-southern-strategy-is-a-lie/

    That was written by this Ken Raymond, who is a member of the Frederick Douglass Foundation of Forsyth County. Raymond is also a member the Winston Salem Foundation, the North Carolina Republican Executive Committee, and the Forsyth County Republican Executive Committee. Raymond graduated from Winston-Salem State University with a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in English in 1987. If relevant to you, he is black.

    I don’t disagree with your synopsis of JFK.

    I am totally inferring that Democrats are attempting to stoke racial animosity, even where it does not exist. They do not want to end racism because they have a political and financial vested interest in it existing. You could say they are pimping the fears of anyone who is not a white, heterosexual male. When hardline Democrats are confronted with the truth, they either become unhinged, or cease the discussion in their belief that ignorance is bliss.

    I leave you with this suggestion, the same one I leave with those on the right. Research libertarianism and see that it is there that both conservatives and liberals can find much common ground. It also helps provide a different perspective on the issues where disagreement may linger. From that point, we can civilly work out what is remaining. The solutions reside in us, We the People. Not the government, and not a tyranny of the majority, whoever they may be.

    • farlefty says:

      First, you cannot promote truth and freedom and be a Republican–and I am dead serious about this. From the RNC to every Republican Prez candidate to the House and Senate, every one a liar and attempting to rob women and minorities and the poor of their rights. Any Republican who isn’t a liar is getting out, like Olympia Snowe.

      Any black person who’s a Republican hates their own race and is only interested in bettering themselves. Their white Republican masters use them for specific jobs and then toss them aside (Michael Steele, Ken Blackwell).

      This is the last time I’m responding to your comments because you just don’t get it; you are so controlled by your ideology. The “Democrats are attempting to stoke racial animosity”? Are you nuts? Which political party does the first black President in history belong to? Which Party (Republican) and which Fox Noise network were responsible for getting Van Jones tossed from the White House, Shirley Sherrod tossed from her USDA job, ACORN closed down, slandering and libeling Prof. Derrick Bell and Rev. Jeremiah Wright? Which Party (Republican) and which Fox Noise network (Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly) tried to create a controversy over Obama hugging Prof. Bell at Harvard 20 years ago–but couldn’t get traction on it because everyone recognized it for the race baiting it was? Our discussion is at an end. There is evidence of reasoned or logical thinking on your part, or any views based on fact. There is no why you will ever work civilly with anyone who’s a Democrat or a liberal until you learn what is true, what is real, and what is Republican propaganda you choose to believe in. Anyone who remains a Republican after the way the Party has flushed itself down the toilet over the past 20 years is a total idiot and has no idea what their own best self interest is unless they reside comfortably in the top 1%. Until you realize that, there are no solutions residing in you.

  6. G says:

    I had just said, “When hardline Democrats are confronted with the truth, they either become unhinged, or cease the discussion in their belief that ignorance is bliss.”

    Thanks for proving my point.

    I sincerely feel sorry for you.

  7. farlefty says:

    You are one delusional little bastard. Typical Republican. Be happy in your ignorance. You have given yourself no other choice.

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