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Thursday, January 12, 2012

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Panetta said "that's not what the United States does." But...but...that IS what the United States does, isn't it?

I believe him because he said it twice.

Perhaps this is what that "leaner and more efficient" Empire, about which liberal hawks were talking, looks like. It's a lot less resource-consuming to project assassination and traditional terrorism globally than it is to project a heavy mechanized occupation force.

They're looking to see whether they can gradually destabilize Iran into a 'failed' (malleable) state, without having to go in with shock&awe and do it all at once.

It's a disgusting world where the above qualifies as optimism. Hope that our overlords will stick to limited terrorism, and refrain from leveling a world capital with aerial bombardment.

Is his point that we don't know was involved, but it wasn't the U.S. I gather from his statement that he's trying to say something about involvement, am I wrong?

Panetta went on to condemn the killings as acts of terrorism, yeah?

Sorry, "...we don't know WHO was involved, . . . "

"It's a lot less resource-consuming to project assassination and traditional terrorism globally than it is to project a heavy mechanized occupation force." - Cloud

Perhaps that's why the oppressed often turn to "terrorism." I agree with the statement that Cloud seams to be saying that this approach is better then the Iraq approach (though I do think escalation is inevitable) but that's like saying that it's better to get kicked in the shins then to have an anvil dropped on your foot... only both Iran situations involve death and my analogy doesn't... anyways both are bad but one is worse then the other.

About O.J. Simpson. I don't begrudge Simpson for not being convicted as I enjoyed seeing the LAPD and the DA not be able to pull their usual s*** but I only wish one doesn't have to be wealthy to get anything approaching fair treatment in our courts.

Perhaps this is what that "leaner and more efficient" Empire, about which liberal hawks were talking, looks like. It's a lot less resource-consuming to project assassination and traditional terrorism globally than it is to project a heavy mechanized occupation force.

Obama's hero Reagan proved the success of this strategy in Central America. Ronnie learned the lesson of bad PR from the use of brute force in Beirut.

"we were not involved in any way, in any way, with regards to the assassination that took place there."

Here, the famous Claud Cockburn quote may be appropriately applied: "Never believe anything until it has been officially denied."

Benjamin Arthur Schwab wrote:

About O.J. Simpson. I don't begrudge Simpson for not being convicted as I enjoyed seeing the LAPD and the DA not be able to pull their usual s*** but I only wish one doesn't have to be wealthy to get anything approaching fair treatment in our courts.

(Assuming you believe that the evidence presented at the trial clearly implicated Mr. Simpson as being guilty as charged)

1.) How, exactly, were the LAPD wrong in /this case/?

2.) How can you characterize an acquital in the face of overwhelming evidence of guilt as "approaching fair treatment"?

Mx. Independent Observer:

As far as whether or not O.J. Simpson was guilty, I don't know and I honestly don't care. Simpson played football before my time and I was never personally invested in him and while any homicide is tragic to those personally connected to the victim, there are too many homicides for me to care about each individual one. The fact that there are so many homicides as the render each one individually statistically meaningless is itself a tragedy. More along the lines of the original post, large homicides (like in war) can be individually statistically significant and I do personalty care about them. Also, with respect to an entity that is in someway representative of myself, I care about that entity's actions. That's why I care about the referenced homicides in Iran. In short, I never bothered to take a look at the situation to determine for myself whether or not it is likely that O.J. Simpson murdered Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman and I see no value in doing so.

While I am not familiar enough with the O.J. Simpson case to have any rational ideas of guilt or innocence, I have heard claims that the LAPD, in this case, created false evidence in order to enhance the case against Simpson. I find this credible as this is common practice amongst police forces and would be even more credible given the reputation the LAPD has of being racist and abusive even when compared with other police forces. For the LAPD and our justice system to be embarrassed by this practice on a national scale is something I think is valuable and I don't think anybody should punished because of false evidence even in part. An acquittal that is derived from the fact that the prosecution presented false evidence is a good thing and I do not begrudge anyone being acquitted when prosecutors use such tactics.

I think the main cultural reaction to the O.J. Simpson trail was "OMG, how could the jury be so stupid?" which is a shame because instead it should have been "OMG, the LAPD is trying to get away (and probably usually does get away) with some truly disgusting shit." If a guilty man did go free because the state knowingly used and even manufactured illegitimate evidence then the problem is not with the jury (a jury failing to find somebody guilty in such a case is the correct ruling) but with the state. If the O.J. Simpson case has any value to those not personally involved, aside from entertainment value which I do not share, it is in the realization that police forces and prosecutors need to be careful with how they conduct themselves and do things correctly. The problem is this is how they get convictions and abusive practices are reflexive for them.

I can celebrate the failure of an abusive police force to get a conviction using abusive tactics even if they didn't need to be abusive in order to achieve a conviction in the particular example.

I characterize O.J. Simpson in his trail as approaching fair treatment because he had the resources to mount an effective defense. Most people who are taken to court by the state in a criminal case do not have the pockets to get themselves and adequate defense. I don't mean to degrade the ability of public defenders and lawyers who chose to represent those amongst the population at large charged with criminal offense but these attorneys generally do not have the same time and resources to invest in a case that prosecutes and police forces have. Most people charged with a criminal defense lack adequate council to research and combat in court the abuses perpetuated by the state. Someone who can afford such adequate council is approaching fair treatment in court.

Also a conviction is more then just a statement that someone is guilty but it carries consequences as well. I think it is reasonable to assume that if convicted and if that conviction held that O.J. Simpson would have received life in prison. I think that life imprisonment is immoral. I do not think that anybody should be imprisoned for more then 12 years for any reason (and I don't even endorse imprisonment as it currently exists in the US). The exception is that if it can be demonstrated that (at the end of a prison term) a person presents a specific and imminent danger requiring further quarantine. Given that I consider the punishment immoral, I think that an acquittal is correct no matter what the evidence is.

Benjamin Arthur Schwab

In related news, O.J. will find the real killer any day now.

Is that some kind of joke? How is OJ going to find the real killer of the Iranian scientist?

On the plus side, at least the US Government doesn't kill everybody.

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