2/25/2005

A blog recommendation

I got a comment today from the bloggers at http://velvelonnationalaffairs.blogspot.com, who mentioned that they enjoyed my site and asked me to look at velvelonnationalaffairs. I did, and I highly recommend it.
Lawrence Velvel, Dean of the Massachusetts School of Law, publishes a blog with his views on national affairs, with some really interesting recent posts on Iraq, torture, Gonzales, Chertoff, and other legal/moral dilemmas facing the US. He has also written scholarly books praised by Howard Zinn and Joseph Ellis.
A sample quotation:
"We live in odd times. At least they seem odd to those in their 60s who suffer from the conceit that in their youth they were inculcated with some of the more admirable views of the 1950s and early 1960s. In those days, honesty, competence, hard work, modesty and, increasingly, concern for others were celebrated. The idea that we would have a President and Cabinet members who were criminals, and a Department of Justice which did everything it could to abet the crimes, was unthinkable. To be sure, there were those with bad ideas in those days, southern racists and militarists prominent among them. But I daresay that ever-increasing opinion went the other way. But today we have a president, cabinet officers, subcabinet officers, government lawyers, judges, and cabinet nominees who beyond dispute are guilty of crimes because they knew of, welcomed in the hope it would extract information, and unsuccessfully tried to immunize torture, torture which apparently even went to the point of approximately two to three dozen deaths in captivity. Of course, that these people are guilty of crimes is not something that the mainstream press is yet willing to say. It lacks the courage, especially as to Bush himself. Nor are the Democrats willing yet to say it, much less bring impeachment proceedings against this crowd of criminals, since it would not at this point be good politics -- Bush just won the election, after all, which for at least some time in the future will immunize this twice accidental president against being brought to book. Nonetheless, to use phraseology that was a favorite of a conservative, Bob Bork, despite the current weak knees of the press and the Democrats, "there is no legitimate argument" that Bush and company are not guilty of crimes. It was, indeed, the fear that its people were engaging in crimes that initially led the CIA to request the preposterous and now (only) partially abandoned legal opinions authorizing torture despite American laws against it."

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