I’m guessing that this bill (S 3081) is the follow up to all of the complaints about the underwear bomber getting read his Miranda rights. Which was something I heard far too much about in the two weeks following the unsuccessful bombing attempt, and involved a lot of back and forth with one side pointing out that they supposedly got “actionable intelligence” out of the guy without treating him an way that makes me ashamed to be an American, and the other side (as far as I can tell) maintaining that so what, it doesn’t count if you didn’t get that information 24-style. It also goes with the absolute paroxysms that some people are having about trials for terrorists in civilian court, which is another thing I support. If it was good enough for Timothy McVeigh or shoe bomber Richard Reid (a foreign national), I tend to think it’s good enough for other evil pieces of human-shaped refuse that think they have a right to express themselves by killing a lot of innocent people.
So as you can imagine, I am less than impressed by this bill. Eric from Standing on the Shoulders of Giant Midgets has a lovely analysis of the awfulness of the bill, which is better than anything I could come up with.
Taking a look at the bill on THOMAS1 (if you haven’t used THOMAS before, I really recommend having it bookmarked) shows that it was introduced by Senator McCain2, who once upon a time I respected as a human being, and 9 consponsors, eight of whom are Republican, with the last being McCain’s BFF Lieberman. I find this sadly unsurprising. The bill’s currently in the Judiciary committee, where one might hope that it will be set on fire, or possibly used to line a bird cage. Considering that the US Senate has recently become the Great Engine Of Getting Absolutely Nothing Done, I’m not actually that worried, though goodness knows that the Senate as a whole has made it a career goal to be galactically disappointing. I’m mostly just distressed that close to 10% of the Senate seems to distrust our legal system so profoundly.
1 – The Colorado equivalent of THOMAS can be found via the General Assembly website. I find it invaluable for every time I get a new “action alert” from some random political group (this is what I get for having donated $25 to someone’s campaign, apparently) and want to see if the bill in question really is what they’re claiming. If you’re not a Colorado resident, I’m sure your state has something equivalent. It’s a good thing to have in the bookmarks, I think.
2 – So this also may very well also have to do with Senator McCain desperately trying to hold on to his senate seat by outcrazying JD Hayworth without sinking to the level of man and horse marriage. The Rachel Maddow clip is very worth watching for the hysterical laughter-inducing revelation of Hayworth’s problems with empirical reality.