Monthly Archives: June 2007
This group blog showcases female writers from around the blogosphere. The blog however is NOT just for women, oh no..we do not discriminate at Sirens Chronicles. We welcome both sexes to discuss issues and read our writings, our rants and our views of the world we all live in. The following is a current list of the writers on the site and their personal blogs. Many of these women write for other sites as well. We are a diverse group with one common goal:
Betmo writes at BetBlue
Bluegrrrrl writes at PeaceTrain
DemonPrincess writes at MoronCowboy
DivaJood writes at JourneysWithJood
Dusty writes at LeftwingNutJob
Enigma writes at WatergateSummer
Jet writes at BringItOn
Louise writes at WeezieLou
PBS writes at LifeIsAPBSandwich
SageFever writes at B.com
Sumo writes at SumoMerriment
Thorne writes at ThornesWorld
From ThinkProgress: (video on their site as well)
Yesterday, after years of White House stonewalling, the Senate Judiciary Committee issued subpoenas to the Bush administration for documents related to the warrantless domestic surveillance program.
Today, during a background discussion with reporters, senior Bush administration officials indicated that they would invoke executive privilege in order to deny the NSA documents to Congress, just as they did this morning concerning subpoenas related to the U.S. attorney scandal. “Our response to [the NSA] subpoenas will be the same as our response was before,” said an anonymous official.
But last night on MSNBC’s Countdown, George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley claimed that Congress may be able to “get around the executive privilege in court” by saying “we are investigating a potential crime.” Turley said this was possible because warrantless wiretapping is “a federal crime” that “the president has ordered hundreds of people do.”
As Columbia University law professor Michael Dorf points out, the Supreme Court ruled in United States v. Nixon that, “where the President asserts only a generalized need for confidentiality, [executive privilege] must yield to the interests of the government and defendants in a criminal prosecution.”
Bush is invoking such “a generalized need for confidentiality,” according to a senior administration official this morning:
“This is not a mere exercise relating to a particular event. This is an exercise in an attempt to protect the prerogatives of the president for this president and for future presidents.”
When I saw this on Countdown the other night I thought it was a simply wonderful idea. I am glad that TP posted on it for those that might of missed the show and interview w/Professor Turley.
WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court, reversing course, agreed Friday to review whether Guantanamo Bay detainees may go to federal court to challenge their indefinite confinement.
The action, announced without comment along with other end-of-term orders, is a setback for the Bush administration. It had argued that a new law strips courts of their jurisdiction to hear detainee cases.
In April, the court turned down an identical request, although several justices indicated they could be persuaded otherwise.
The move is highly unusual.
The court did not indicate what changed the justices’ minds about considering the issue. But last week, lawyers for the detainees filed a statement from a military lawyer in which he described the inadequacy of the process the administration has put forward as an alternative to a full-blown review by civilian courts.
The White House continued to back its legal stance.
“We did not think that court review at this time was necessary, but we are confident in our legal position,” said Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council, said Thursday.
The White House continued to back its legal stance.
“We did not think that court review at this time was necessary, but we are confident in our legal position,” said Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council.
‘A stunning victory’
“This is a stunning victory for the detainees,” said Eric M. Freedman, professor of constitutional law at Hofstra Law School, who has been advising the detainees. “It goes well beyond what we asked for, and clearly indicates the unease up there” at the Supreme Court.
In February, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upheld a key provision of a law the Bush administration pushed through Congress last year stripping federal courts of their ability to hear the detainees’ challenges to their confinement.
On April 2, the Supreme denied the detainees’ request to review the February appeals court ruling.
The detainees then petitioned the court to reconsider its denial.
Dismissing the petitions would be “a profound deprivation” of the prisoners’ right to speedy court review, lawyers for the detainees said.
The administration asked that the detainees’ Supreme Court petitions be thrown out.
Many of the 375 detainees have been held at Guantanamo for five years.
In recent months, the main arena in the legal battle over the detainees has been the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
‘The highest level of deference’
The appeals court is considering how to handle the detainees’ challenges to military tribunals that found them to be enemy combatants, which left them without any of the legal rights accorded prisoners of war.
The White House is considering closing Guantanamo and transferring some of the most dangerous suspects to a prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., and a Navy brig in South Carolina.
The detainees’ attorneys want the appeals court to allow a broad inquiry questioning the accuracy and completeness of the evidence the tribunals gathered about the detainees, most of it classified.
The Justice Department has been seeking a limited review, saying that the findings of the military tribunals are “entitled to the highest level of deference.”
The White House has been weighing closing the Guantanamo Bay prison, which has brought global criticism of the Bush administration and condemnation from Democrats on Capitol Hill.
The cases are Boumediene v. Bush, 06-1195, and Al Odah v. U.S., 06-1196.
WaPo also has a writeup here. The last time this subject came up SCOTUS only had 3 of the necessary 4 Justices that wanted to review the case. True to form, Kennedy was on the fence. It is unclear if he flipflopped again. The question this time is why a Military Tribunal over our regular court system….EXACTLY..THANK YOU FOR SEEING THE ridiculousness of this situation created by the Asshat-in-Chief. This case won’t come before them until after October sadly..but its something to give us hope.
According to former USA Paul Charlton, in testimony before the Senate Judicial subcommittee, Abu Gonzales would insist on the death penalty in cases where he was unfamiliar with the evidence, or lack there of. He would also push it over the objections of the Prosecutor/USA handling the case.
How stupid is that? This man has no right running our countries highest legal office. From a Jurist writeup:
Charlton, one of the former US Attorneys involved in the current firings controversy, described a case where the Department of Justice simultaneously refused to exhume the body of an alleged victim from a landfill to provide forensic evidence while Gonzales pushed for the death penalty despite the objections of Carlton and his prosecutors due to the case’s reliance on testimonial evidence obtained through guilty pleas. Charlton added that it was “wrong for the government to both seek the death penalty and at the same time refuse to provide funds to obtain evidence that could prove a vital link in supporting or negating its position.”
Of course Abu Gonzales turned the tables on former USA Charlton, saying he disobeyed authority in one of his many trips to Congress to explain why he fired the 8 USA’s.
In March, USA Today reported that Charlton was among the top 10 US Attorneys in terms of convictions secured.
Makes sense right? I say that with tongue firmly planted in my cheek, dear reader. Wotta asshole.
And people wonder why there are subpoenas out there for all this bullshit. Simply friggin amazing.
WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected public school assignment plans that take account of students’ race.
The decision in cases affecting schools in Louisville, Ky., and Seattle could imperil similar plans in hundreds of districts nationwide, and it leaves public school systems with a limited arsenal to maintain racial diversity.
The court split, 5-4, with Chief Justice John Roberts announcing the court’s judgment. Justice Stephen Breyer wrote a dissent that was joined by the court’s other three liberals.
Death row decision
In a separate decision, the court also blocked the execution of a Texas killer whose lawyers argued that he should not be put to death because he is mentally ill.
Scott Louis Panetti shot his in-laws to death 15 years ago in front of his wife and young daughter.
Panetti knows what he did, but believes that he is on death row because he preaches the word of God, his lawyers say.
Panetti’s lawyers wanted the court to determine that people who cannot understand the connection between their crime and punishment because of mental illness may not be executed.