Thoughts for the day

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed

Read the rest.

This is my song, oh God of all the nations,
a song of peace for lands afar and mine.
This is my home, the country where my heart is;
here are my hopes, my dreams, my holy shrine;
but other hearts in other lands are beating
with hopes and dreams as true and high as mine

My country’s skies are bluer than the ocean,
and sunlight beams on clover leaf and pine.
But other lands have sunlight too and clover,
and skies are everywhere as blue as mine.
This is my song, oh God of all the nations;
a song of peace for their land and for mine.

Words by Lloyd Stone.

War Criminals? part 2

Some of the brutal interrogation methods that Mr. Yoo and Mr. Bybee approved for use on Qaeda prisoners, including wall-slamming and the near-drowning of waterboarding, had never before been authorized in American history, and the United States had condemned such treatment as torture and abuse when used by other countries.

Um, perhaps because it is torture?

via Justice Department Report Finds John Yoo and Jay Bybee Not Guilty of Misconduct —

War Criminals?

John Yoo, page 251

Jay Bybee, page 255

Steven Bradbury, page 258

Michael Chertoff, Adam Ciongoli, John Ashcroft, page 259

OPR Report On Torture Memos.

Based on the results of our investigation, we concluded that former Deputy AAG John Yoo committed intentional professional misconduct when he violated his duty to exercise independent legal judgment and render thorough, objective, and candid legal advice.

We found that former AAG Jay Bybee committed professional misconduct when he acted in reckless disregard of his duty to exercise independent legal judgment and render thorough, objective, and candid legal advice.

We did not fmd that the other Department officials involved in this matter committed professional misconduct in this matter.

Sadly, this is a document that looks only at whether Office of Legal Counsel staff performed according to professional standards as lawyers. Whatever their “professional responsibilities,” it is clear from even my cursory look that these government officials were participating in the justification of torture.

Notably absent are then-President Bush, Vice President Cheney, congressional leadership, CIA personnel, and members of the military who may have been complicit in our nation’s descent into barbarism in the name of their “war on terror.”

(A tip of the hat to Andrew Sullivan.)