Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Bush wacked amend. 5

Fifth Amendment
Indictments; Due process; Self-incrimination; Double jeopardy, and rules for Eminent Domain.
Most people think of the 5th amendment and think of self incrimination (peading the 5th) It's a bit more than that.
Indictments - The formal accusations brought against a person of a criminal offense. There were several of the "enemy combatants" who were american citizens who received no indictments but were merely held for years at Guantanimo. Some individuals were rendered (kidnapped) and sent to be tortured in other countries see the diagram below

click to enlarge
Due process - is the principle that the government must respect all of a person's legal rights, instead of just some or most of those legal rights, when the government deprives a person of life, liberty, or property. In the laws of the United States, this principle gives individuals a varying ability to enforce their rights against alleged violations thereof by governments. Due process has also been frequently interpreted as placing limitations on laws and legal proceedings, in order for judges instead of legislators to guarantee fundamental fairness, justice, and liberty. Interesting to note that even with the packing of the nations courts with lock step republicans the Supreme Court has twice overturned Bushs' made up laws. Even someone accused of murder has some fundamental rights to defend themselves. That is true in nearly every country unless of course the country is run by a dictator.
Habeas corpus
On January 17, 2007, Attorney General Gonzales asserted in Senate testimony that while habeas corpus is "one of our most cherished rights," the United States Constitution does not expressly guarantee habeas rights to United States residents or citizens.[8] As such, the law could be extended to U.S. citizens and held if left unchecked.
As Robert Parry writes in the Baltimore Chronicle & Sentinel:
“ Applying Gonzales’s reasoning, one could argue that the First Amendment doesn’t explicitly say Americans have the right to worship as they choose, speak as they wish or assemble peacefully.
Ironically, Gonzales may be wrong in another way about the lack of specificity in the Constitution’s granting of habeas corpus rights. Many of the legal features attributed to habeas corpus are delineated in a positive way in the Sixth Amendment.
Self incrimination
I can only guess how much information has been gleened from tourture methods carried out in Gitmo and other courtries where interrogation techniques have been less than humane. Even the FBI was aware that military and CIA interrogators were using techniques that they themselves would not use and questioned the legality of the practices. One might say but hey these aren't Americans and they are not on American soil, but there have been violations of the Geneva Convention and international law. It was estimated that of all those being held at Gitmo that only about 125 had any ties to any of the terror groups and the rest were merely caught up in various raids in Afghanastan. It was common knowledge that anyone turning in a suspected terrorist would get several thousand dollars from the U.S. military. In a country with no work and all of the monthly allotments cut who wouldn't turn in their enemys guilty or not?  If you're going to bring democracy to another nation (which is a choice of that nation and not a mandate) you do so by example and not by immitating some tin horn dictatorship with torture and indefinite imprisonment. And who of us wouldn't incriminate ourselves after being tortured whether true or not.
This administration has traded fear for our civil rights. You can only use that argument for so long. I'm not buying it anymore. We as a nation were once respected for our freedoms and sense of justice. We are slowly falling to the status of a bananna republic.


NucMEd is Hot said...

Oh, he has done such a fine job with "working" around the constitution.

BBC said...

Well, I do hope that someday we will get wise enough to get rid of this Roman Empire style of government and political system, and the constitution (as well meaning as it was) and rebuild it all again in wiser ways.

BBC said...

Rights, well, people like to abuse their rights. And way to many of them vote with the nine year old in them.

Snave said...

Thanks for examining the Amendments. I think it was the report in Capitol Hill Blue a while back that said Bush has referred to the Constitution as a "goddamned piece of paper". Remarks like that one, if true, prove to me that Bush is all about Bush and about his own agenda... and that he doesn't give a crap about us (i.e. America).

I can't wait until someone else is in office. I hope that person is Obama, because I believe he sees American as a nation of laws and that he would have respect for that. I doubt McCain would be a whole lot better than Dumbya, but I think he might at least have a LITTLE more respect for the Constitution than Bush does.

I know where the White House buys its toilet paper: