The True 9/11 Legacy: USA as Valhalla for Torturers and Government Secrecy

The Ninth Circuit court of federal appeals embraced the Obama and Bush administration’s spurious arguments that Americans cannot be permitted to know the details of Bush-era torture. But the court, in one of the most optimistic moments in recent judicial history, declared that its decision “does not preclude the government from honoring the fundamental principles of justice.”

Of course, the executive branch doesn’t have to honor any such principles – because the court permitted them to hide their crimes behind the doctrine of “state secrets.”

Amazingly, Judge Alex Kozinski – often reputed to be the most libertarian-leaning appellate judge in America – cast the deciding vote in favor of immunity for torturers in the 6-5 decision.

Glenn Greenwald has an excellent piece on the ruling.


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7 Responses to The True 9/11 Legacy: USA as Valhalla for Torturers and Government Secrecy

  1. The Infamous Oregon Lawhobbit September 9, 2010 at 3:56 pm #

    From the excellent Greenwald piece: “Suffice to say — with great understatement — Obama’s doing this doesn’t trigger the same level of outrage and objection as when Bush did it, at least not in most circles.”

    Most people only disagree with tyranny that is not their own. They’re perfectly comfortable with and supportive of their OWN tyrants.

  2. Jim September 9, 2010 at 4:01 pm #

    But since we had the chance to vote, doesn’t that mean that our rulers can never be tyrants?

  3. The Infamous Oregon Lawhobbit September 9, 2010 at 4:09 pm #

    Hey, if you want to believe that one, let’s add in the, “We owe the national debt to ourselves, so it’s no big deal” one as well!

  4. CF Oxtrot September 9, 2010 at 7:01 pm #

    I don’t know how things stack up today, but back in the late 80s when I was in law school, the 9th Circuit was known as the most liberal US Court of Appeals in the land. I’ve heard that in the meantime, the DC Circuit has given the 9th Circuit a run for its money on the liberal leadership spot, but the few times I’ve had recently to bother looking at Fed appellate cases, the 9th Cir still seemed very liberal to me.

    I guess they’ve gone fully leftward and now are Stalinist.

    So we have that going for us, eh?

    Anyway, I agree with the Lawhobbit’s first post — people are happy as long as the tyrant is on their “team.” This explains the continued support for Obama among many Democrats, even when you show them that Obama-Biden is essentially Bush-Cheney’s third term, and remind them that when Bush-Cheney did X, Y or Z the Democrat partisans I knew were apoplectic.

  5. Dirk W. Sabin September 10, 2010 at 8:18 am #

    This is rich, the statement that this sanctioning of torture in the dark: “does not preclude the government from honoring the fundamental principles of justice” is in fact, a declaration that the government does not now “honor” justice nor does it adhere to the rule of law. It is a tacit admission that the government is fully aware that the American Citizen would likely not have the stomach for the kinds of things its government undertakes on its behalf and might begin to question authority. This , of course, is the entire point of the Authoritarian Agenda. Create a Potemkin Facade of Security with fear poking out of the false windows in order to make the sheep docile and then proceed to conduct itself with utter impunity, free of the nettlesome requirements of a Representative Democracy. Everyone should know that they will get their turn in this bloody barrel.

  6. alpowolf September 10, 2010 at 5:44 pm #

    I’ve noticed that the lefty blogs are either ignoring this entirely, or keeping the denunciations mild and hedged because gee, we can’t let this damage the prospects for the Donkey Party–nothing is more important than the Donkey Party! What’s a little torture next to that?

  7. Jim September 10, 2010 at 10:10 pm #

    I have been amazed how little coverage this decision has received. Typical for the braindead media…