Sunday, July 02, 2006

Will the GOP run in the mid-terms as the party willing to repudiate the Geneva Convention?

The Bush administration sent out a trial balloon today. A "Senior Administration Official" suggested that the Republicans might run in 06 on the slogan, "Are you willing to give terrorists the same rights as our boys and girls in uniform?"

Note that the "rights" in question are given to servicemen and women their commanders think have violated military law. A Marine accused of selling a military secret to Al Qaeda would have these rights. A soldier accused of fragging an officer would have these rights.

Note also the shameless willingness to put short-term partisan advantage over the Constitution, America's solemn international commitments and the effective fight against terrorism. We may be used to it, but it doesn't make it any less shocking.

God knows that enemies of the Bush administration overuse the term "fascist". Rove knows that this only damages them politically. But what, then, do we call the theme that the acceptance of constitutional constraints, the very idea that the state is subject to law, just shows insufficient loyalty to the nation? "We must be as ruthless as our enemies. We cannot -- in this new era -- accept the niceties of procedural rights." The confidence that the public will regard law as weakness, what else can we call this confidence?

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