Saturday, May 23, 2009

Lock him up

There is an indisputable case for preventive detention, one that even the ACLU might grudgingly accept: ex VP Dick Cheney. For the harm that he has already perpetrated on our country and the damage his unrestrained rhetoric might yet do, let's put him away and buy ourselves retribution and political serenity at the same time.

I am surprised that the Obamites allowed themselves to be drawn into a debate with Cheney and the Mean People over this issue. On the one hand, the legal questions about the constitutionality and morality of preventive detention are complex and difficult for the general public to follow (including BobOnARoll). Hard to score a definitive political 'win' in that arena.

On the other hand, all the questions around the imprisonment and trial of terrorists are open to the most blatant and unabashed demagoguery by the most skilled practicioners of such on the planet--the Republican Party. Difficult to win the day when your decision to close Guantanamo is portrayed as a weekend terrorist release program on American soil.

Hook and release is fun on a lake but it won't do for national security policy. Hope the brilliant minds around Barack find a formula that achieves our security goals in a way consistent with our laws and customs.

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