Thursday, July 9, 2009

Obama's Embrace of Illegal Bush Era Policies

President Obama's embrace, and even expansion, of the most egregious and lawless aspects of former President Bush's national security policies are a shock to many progressives that put their hope in an Obama administration.  Examples abound, including denial of basic civil liberties for detainees, an expansion of war in Afghanistan, and a refusal to investigate past and current abuses of the law (torture and rendition come to mind, both of which are clear violations of domestic and international law) by our highest political officials.  The most frightening, however, is the Obama administration's embrace of a policy called "preventive detention", in which the executive branch detains individuals, even if found innocent in a court of law (if they are even given a chance in court!), for crimes that they could potentially commit.  Every reasonable person, including ALL Democrats, were vehemently opposed to these policies under former President Bush.  The fact that a Democrat is in office now does not make these policies justifiable and Democrats should be outraged.  For a more comprehensive and detailed analysis of President Obama's embrace of Bush era policies, see this article by Jack Goldsmith, who worked in the Bush Justice Department in the Office of Legal Counsel.  

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