At Raw Story, Adam Skaggs warns that bigger money than ever will be pouring into judicial elections in light of the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling of Citizens United. He also offers some good suggestions:
[S]tates should adopt public financing systems for judicial elections (something West Virginia, North Carolina, New Mexico, and Wisconsin have already done). Public financing gets judges out of the unseemly business of dialing for dollars to make sure they win. States also need to adopt stricter disclosure rules, so the public knows which individuals and groups are spending in judicial campaigns. And states should institute new disqualification regulations to ensure that, if a judge is assigned to hear the case of a major campaign supporter, he or she must step aside and let a wholly impartial judge preside.
How dangerous are the most dangerous prisoners of Guantanamo? If you listened to the Bush Administration, you’d think that they were all hardened killers. But guess what happens when a real-life judge looks only at the government’s evidence regarding those the government hasn’t released willingly? Glenn Greenwald reviews recent information from the Washington Post:
Federal judges, acting under a landmark 2008 Supreme Court ruling that grants Guantanamo Bay detainees the right to challenge their confinements, have ordered the government to free 32 prisoners and backed the detention of nine others. In their opinions, the judges have gutted allegations and questioned the reliability of statements by the prisoners during interrogations and by the informants. Even when ruling for the government, the judges have not always endorsed the Justice Department’s case. . . .
This, of course, is a national travesty. Considering only the government’s evidence, judges have ordered the release of 32 out of 41 of the detainees. This is not an indication that the judges have been lenient; they are the same career federal judges who run the United States District Courts. Rather, these shocking statistics show that there is no meaningful evidence that most of the longest imprisoned detainees are guilty of anything at all. Consider also that the U.S. released most of the detainees a long time ago because even the U.S. admitted that it had no evidence of wrongdoing in most of these cases:
Since October 7, 2001, when the current war in Afghanistan began, 775 detainees have been brought to Guantánamo. Of these, approximately 420 have been released without charge. In January 2009, approximately 245 detainees remained. . . Of those still incarcerated, U.S. officials said they intend to eventually put 60 to 80 on trial and free the rest.
It’s a beautiful system, isn’t it? Imprison and vilify hundreds of innocent people, distributing their images to garner public support for a needless series of military occupations. More and more, I think of the U.S. as primarily a warmonger society. The evidence just keeps pouring in from every direction.
Let’s see . . . who should have the final say over whether a terminally ill person has suffered enough and should be allowed to check out of life Earth. Based on the debacle involving Terry Schiavo I’m betting that the country will be split down the middle in this emerging battle in the culture [...]
Imagine that you were about to accept one of three comparable jobs. You need to choose the job. Would the house your future boss lives in provide information that would assist you to choose? The person who would be your boss for Job A lives in this house: The person who would be your boss [...]