Holder Did Not Go Far Enough on Sentencing & Drug Policy Reform

prison overcrowding

Kevin Zeese and Cliff Thornton: There are important steps that could be taken by President Obama and Attorney General Holder right now, without Congress, that could end injustice being suffered by tens of thousands and prevent future injustices.

Washington Agog as Petraeus Caught with Pants Down

Petraeus-pants-down

Karen Finney: Whether or not an extramarital affair should be grounds for stepping down from a high-level post, it’s a tragic and potentially dangerous reality of hyper-partisan Washington that events are so easily perverted into partisan witch hunts.

Paul Krugman Heading to White House Job?

paul krugman

Charley James: Reports surfaced today that Nobel Prize Winning economist Dr. Paul Krugman will be offered the job of chairman for the White House Council of Economic Advisors.

Issa’s Plot Theory Full of Holes

issa hearing

Karen Finney: Darrell Issa’s current request has crept again, seeking documents from a period even further from the initial incident and DOJ discovery, hoping still for evidence of a clandestine anti-gun-control plot.

Darryl Issa’s Contemptible Actions

Andy Love: Issa’s relentless pursuit of the president, culminating in this investigation of a trumped-up scandal is nothing more than cynical political theater.

The Feds vs. The States: Supreme Court Must Decide Death Penalty Fight

death penalty vigil

Bruce Reilly: This legal battle will cost the taxpayers about a million dollars, just to see what will happen to Jason Pleau, a man that none of them likely care an iota about.

Debunking the Iran “Terror Plot”

mueller holder

Gareth Porter: A close analysis of the FBI deposition reveals, however, that independent evidence for the charge that Arbabsiar was sent by the Qods Force on a mission to arrange for the assassination of Jubeir is lacking.

LAUSD’s Apartheid Hall of Shame (Part One)

school discipline

Sikivu Hutchinson: In a district where black students are already presumed guilty until proven innocent, Gardena High School’s racially lopsided awards ceremony was not only criminal, it was yet another indication of how black students are still being systematically discarded, held hostage not only by blatant push-out strategies but by bogus reform that straightjackets children of color with one-size-fits-all bromides. Where is the outrage?

Eric Holder: Immigration Appeals Board Should Reconsider DOMA Decision

mike-honda

Andrea Nill: Normally, members of the LGBT community who are married to a foreign national would not be able to sponsor their partner for a green card and prevent his or her spouse from being deported.

HSPD 12 Will Stand at JPL

On January 19, 2011 the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it had decided in favor of the government in the matter of NASA, et al., v. Robert M. Nelson et al. In a unanimous decision, the court found that the questions the 28 JPL employees challenged were appropriate for the protection of JPL as a federal facility.

The BP Oil Spill Saga: Where Things Stand Now

bp explosion

Marian Wang: Many questions remain unanswered about the long-term health and environmental effects of the crude oil and the unprecedented amount of dispersant, chemicals BP used to break down the thick crude. Both BP and the government have committed funding for continued study of these issues.

Access to the Space Shuttle: JPL Scientists Cite NASA Policies to Refute Solicitor General

space shuttle

Scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory today released NASA documents that support their demand that acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal retract remarks made before the United States Supreme Court on October 5 in the case of Nelson et al. v. NASA et al (09-530)

SB-1070 Proponents Accuse DOJ for Not Going After ‘Sanctuary Cities’

Andrea Nill: Proponents of Arizona’s new immigration law, SB-1070, have a new talking point: they are now arguing that if the Department of Justice (DOJ) is going to legally challenge SB-1070, it should also go after “sanctuary city” policies as well. “Sanctuary city” is a right-wing derisive term used to describe cities that have adopted community policing policies that prevent police from asking about the immigration status of or detaining and arresting immigrants solely for being undocumented.

Tens of Thousands March in Protest of Arizona’s SB 1070

arizona immigrant rights rally

Seth Hoy: Tens of thousands of protesters from across the country gathered in Phoenix over the weekend to protest Arizona’s SB 1070. According to some reports, as many as 20,000 protesters carried flags, banners and signs reading “Do I Look Illegal?” and “Where’s the change? Mr. President, how can we trust you for re-election?”

Sarah Palin Supports Arizona’s Law? You Betcha!

sarah palin winks

Seth Hoy: After weeks of negative press, calls for boycotts, and talk of legal challenges to Arizona’s law, Gov. Brewer is on the defensive—as evidenced by trotting out Sarah Palin to launch a new website. For the most part, Palin used Arizona’s controversy as a soap box for her Tea Party talking points—Washington: broken, President: bad, Sarah: good.

How Will Elena Kagan Approach Immigration If Confirmed?

kagan judicial experience

Andrea Nill: Kagan could have a direct impact on the role the federal, state, and local governments play in enacting and enforcing immigration laws. Her potential confirmation could also have a more indirect effect on how the nation’s immigration population is treated and who is and isn’t protected by the U.S. Constitution.

Reporter Discloses List Of 186 Secret Immigrant Detention Facilities

Illegal

Andrea Christina Nill: According to a report published by Jacqueline Stevens in this week’s The Nation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is confining an unknown number of people in 186 secret, unmarked, and unlisted subfield offices. Since the subfield offices are designed to hold detainees in transit, they are not subject to ICE Detention Standards. As a result, Stevens claims ICE has essentially been able to hold individuals charged with a civil infraction in “conditions approaching those no longer authorized for accused terrorists.”

Discrimination: Now You See It, Now You Don’t

Leopold Allen and Alessandra Ferri

I don’t know if you have to experience discrimination first hand in order to be able to see it, but I do know that I learned a lot standing on that corner with my uncle in a wheelchair 20 years ago. For that reason, I have hope that maybe the Civil Rights Division under the Obama administration will do what it has often failed to do in the past – provide a line of defense for this country’s most vulnerable people.

Obama on Race: Process over Product

beer_summit

The emerging position of Obama on race does not seem as much focused on end solutions to our most challenging problems, but rather more on the process of how sustainable solutions may be found.

U.S. Government Threatens to Prosecute Waterboarding

guantanamo2

We’ve been lobbying the Department of Justice all these months without realizing that the key to justice lay in the Department of the Interior, and specifically in the National Park Service, which has told activist Steve Lane he will be prosecuted if he attempts to demonstrate waterboarding at Thursday’s anti-torture rally in Washington, D.C. The [...]

American Torture: No Knowledge of History, No Sense of Tragedy

"Judgement at Nuremberg" Spencer Tracy, Marlene Dietrich 1961 U/A Photo by Al St. Hilaire - Image courtesy mptvimages.com

Recently in the New York Times, Scott Shane and Mark Mazzetti showed that the Bush Administration, the CIA, and the Senate and House Intelligence Committees failed to ask for any historical context before approving so-called “harsh interrogation techniques,” including waterboarding, in 2002. No one apparently knew, or wanted to know, that the U.S. had defined [...]

Geneva Convention Requirements About Prisoners

mccain-graham

Muddled thinking characterizes a May 6 Wall Street Journal column by Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain about those confined in American-run prisons abroad. They reject Geneva Convention trial requirements and even military courts-martial, preferring to have Congress write new guidelines for their imprisonment and trials beyond those in the untested and possibly unconstitutional Military [...]

Will A Nation That Housed 425,000 Nazis in WWII Find Accomodations for 241 Gitmo Captives?

German POWs working at a farm near Moorhead, Minnesota.

The mean-spirited attitude of Republican politicians over repatriating Guantanamo’s remaining 241 inmates in the U.S. reflects both their irrational fears and loss of moral compass. House GOP leaders have introduced a “Keep Terrorists Out of America Act” that would give governors’ veto power to stop the transfer or release of detainees in their state. The [...]

Department of Justice Torture Report Goes Soft On Crime

huberthumphrey

Both the Washington Post and The New York Times have that the much-anticipated report of the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) on how the torture memos came to be national policy will recommend not prosecuting Federal Appeals Court Judge Jay Bybee, Steven Bradbury, and John Yoo for enabling the Bush Administration to torture [...]

A Worse Bybee Memo

declaration of independence

Jay Bybee wrote another memo that nobody has noticed, one purporting to authorize crimes far worse than torture, the same crimes the torture was itself intended to create false justifications for. On October 23, 2002, Assistant Attorney General Bybee signed a 48-page memo to the “counsel to the president” (Alberto Gonzales) titled “Authority of the [...]

Torture: It’s Perfectly Legal — But We Don’t Do It

cheney bush

Liz and Dick Cheney, Bill Bennett, Ari Fleischer, and countless other commentators have saturated the public airwaves of late ever since the Obama Administration decided to make public the Bush torture memos. These apologists for war crimes have been jawboning the issue from every conceivable angle. Why are these barbarians who defend torturing other human [...]

Tortured Posturing on Harsh Interrogation Techniques

torture1

Although Barack Obama should be applauded for stopping torture by the U.S. government and pledging to close the infamous Guantanamo and worldwide CIA secret prisons, he is nevertheless playing politics with the issue to get the best of both worlds. To poke his predecessor, Obama released graphic memos from the Bush Justice Department that appallingly [...]

Torture Memos: Don’t Prosecute, But Change Law

what-me-worry

The recent release of memoranda used by the Bush administration to justify various aggressive interrogation techniques for use on suspected terrorists has led to widespread calls for prosecution, either against those who wrote the memos, those who approved them, or those who carried them out. The grounds for such prosecutions would be that the techniques [...]

Saddam Made Them Do It

saddam-dick-condi

So now we know: Saddam made them do it. The Levin report into Pentagon torture released yesterday tore down the last false flag flying on the devil ship SS Torture, revealing that waterboarding and all the rest of the barbaric acts performed in our name on prisoners resulted from Cheney’s frustration at not getting what [...]

We Don’t Torture But Here Are the Things We Do Do

Jon Stewart really hits the ball out of the park with this one. He asks, “does our country torture people?” Looks like we don’t torture but Jon Stewart provides us with a list of the things we do do thanks to the memos released by the Obama administration. This is a humorous look at a [...]

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