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The Tally Ho

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Sifting Through the Garbage

…and the Press

Sifting through someone’s garbage that apparently moved from my building, David found the latest issues of the Economist. Their cover of Bush several months ago was classic. But in this issue it didn’t take long to read something that caught my attention. In discussing Bush’s economic idea they conclude, "With the deficit already huge, set to reach almost $3 trillion over the next decade, the republicans’ grand plans do not add up. You cannot cut taxes yet further, let alone divert payroll taxes into individual retirement accounts, without inviting a fiscal catastrophe." This article, titled At last, a vision at home, finishes the article comparing team Bush’s optimistic neo-cons having to confront reality in Iraq, so will their economic team. Well, you can read it yourself.

Next article up is by Newsweek’s Michael Isikoff, titled Memos Revealed War Crimes Warning. It is about how the top White House attorney warned BushCo that their promotion of unorthodox methods could mean the US being prosecuted as war criminals. One reason, "…1996 law passed by Congress, known as the War Crimes Act, that banned any Americans from committing war crimes—defined in part as 'grave breaches' of the Geneva Conventions… 'it was difficult to predict with confidence' how Justice Department prosecutors might apply the law in the future. This was especially the case given that some of the language in the Geneva Conventions—such as that outlawing 'outrages upon personal dignity' and 'inhuman treatment' of prisoners—was 'undefined."' We have seen the tactics the US uses on Iraqi prisoners, who are supposedly protected by the Geneva Convention. Does anyone else wonder what may one day come out regarding prisoners in Guantanamo Bay, where people are not protected? What is the US eventually going to do with these prisoners? “In the end, after strong protests from Powell, the White House retreated slightly. In February 2002, it proclaimed that, while the United States would adhere to the Geneva Conventions in the conduct of the war in Afghanistan, captured Taliban and Qaeda fighters would not be given prisoner of war status under the conventions.” Was this directive more about protecting the current administration from a future administration from prosecuting?

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