Tuesday, March 27, 2007


As far as military necessity will permit, religiously respect the constitutional rights of all
George McClellan

It may be necessary to use methods other than constitutional ones
--Robert Mugabe

It looks like one of the Department of Justice's top dogs will invoke the 5th Amendment if called before a Congressional committee. How quaint. Since America is being run like a mafia family, it is only fitting that our officials invoke the 5th.

Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales's senior counselor, Monica M. Goodling, yesterday "refused to testify in the Senate about her involvement in the firings of eight U.S. attorneys, invoking her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination" ("Aide to Gonzales Won't Testify.")

In a sworn statement she said she will "decline to answer any and all questions" because she faces "
a perilous environment in which to testify" Of course, that is usually what cross-examination is like, as opposed to say a trip to Club Med.

John Dowd, Goodling's lawyer, wrote. "It is the politically charged environment created by the members of the committee ... that has created the ambiguous and perilous environment in which even innocent witnesses would be well advised not to testify" (
"Gonzales Aide to Invoke the Fifth.") I wonder that the attorneys for the Gitmo detainees ever claimed such protective maneuvers on their client's behalf.

In the old, pre 9-11 days, this would signal a deal that would leave immunity on the table. But that was the old days. That was before the President, Vice President, Congress, and the Attorney General and the DoJ had declared that torture is a true and lasting democratic value.

I propose that we take this unwilling witness and show the world that America is not so hypocritical that we won't torture white, Republican DoJ flunkies. Let us torture the witness into speaking in a public television-type open forum. Modernity's take on the pillory.

Let's see the eagle fly. Why limit our torture sessions to poor chicanos and poor bastards snatched up on the battlefields of Afghanistan, or the streets of Italy, Germany or Turkey?
In fact, I'll volunteer to squeeze the thumbs, and share the experience in the blog forum. I'll even have someone hold up the cell phone for a picture--the best of citizen reportage.

It's the new America--Let's Torture The Bastard, or "LTTB" for short. Toby Kieth could pen a semi-official anthem to the policy, which will refine and supersede his "LKTA," or Let's Kick Their Ass.

After all, how many terror suspects in Gitmo invoked the 5th? Torture makes one ignore such niceties.