Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Trust the Good King Covering for his Bad Predecessor

President George Bush decreed torture of people in U.S. custody. President Barack Obama issued another decree banning such behavior. This leaves citizens subject to the goodness of the unitary executive.

Independent investigation are not under way. The only court cases are from concerned citizen groups seeking access to information and a handful of detainees. WaPo reported on CIA Chief Leon Panetta's position:

Panetta argued that none of the 65 CIA documents immediately at issue, which the ACLU has sought for several years in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, should be released. He asked U.S. District Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein to draw a legal distinction between the administration's release in April of Justice Department memos authorizing the harsh interrogations and the CIA's desire to keep classified its own documents detailing the specific handling of detainees at its secret facilities overseas.

The unitary executive is firmly entrenched. Court cases are needed to break it up. A spineless Congress has zero chance of performing oversight. It's clear the Obama team won't part with power voluntarily, much less return justice to its proper place.

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