Friday, May 05, 2006

What's the Admax Over-Under?

Zacarius Moussaoui is heading to the Alcatraz of the Rockies to serve his life sentence for his involvement in 9-11.

So what are the odds in neighboring Vegas that a lawsuit will soon be filed claiming that the solitary confinement that he will soon be experiencing is a violation of his constitutional protections against cruel and unusual punishment.

Already, the ever-vigilant folks at Human Rights Watch have voiced their concerns that such confinement is "problematic" and "not humane".

Yup, not only have we spared the life of a criminal who gleefully admitted his role in facilitating the attacks of September 11th, but I'd bet my house that we will soon be treated to a suit asserting that Mr. Moussaoui deserves better than is his new lot in life at the Admax Detention Facility.

I hate to give the left any pointers on how to win elections, but if they were ever to temper their politics with even the smallest dose of common sense (i.e., don't rock the boat when it comes to an admitted terrorist whose life very well should have been forfeit), they would reclaim control of our elected branches of government in a heartbeat. That's right Democrats... don't place all your political capital on admitted terrorists, partial-birth abortions, protests against the Pledge of Allegiance, and racial charlatans such as Al Sharpton and Cynthia McKinney, and you will blaze your way back to power in an instant. I'd also bet my house that the Democrats won't be applying common sense anytime soon...

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Military Tribunals Anyone???

Over five years of court hijinx, expenditures of millions of dollars, and a soapbox for an admitted terrorist results in a sentence of life in prison for Zacarias Moussaoui. Military tribunals sound a tad more attractive right about now...

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

McCain Has a Train to Catch

So if forced to choose, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) would prefer a clean government over one where 1st Amendment rights of free speech are respected. Apparently, he would also be happiest if the trains ran on time.

It must never have occurred to the good Senator that the 1st Amendment is our best buffer against corrupt government. The 1st Amendment does more than merely remind us of the rights that we, as free men and women, enjoy; it also serves a therapeutic function that imposes a check against those who would arrogate power to themselves by allowing the electorate to hold even the most powerful of our leaders to account for their actions.

Senator McCain would rather have us believe that money is the root of all that is evil in government. Money, however, is neither good nor evil. Indeed, the true source of corruption is not the huge sums available to our political office seekers, but the increased lack of accountability of our elected representatives. Lack of political accountability necessarily leads to absolute political power. And Lord Acton had it right over a century ago: "Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely."

Tragically, Senator McCain's campaign finance law, by substantially infringing on our right of free speech, especially political speech, only confers greater power upon the already powerful who are firmly entrenched in their seats of power. All this at the expense of one of our most cherished rights.

Because of McCain-Feingold, an incumbent no longer need be worried about political broadsides from a concerned citizen in the run-up to an election. No, those days are long gone. And the citizen who dares raise his or her voice to influence the outcome of an election during the waning days of a campaign risks more than just humiliation at the polls, facing instead the real prospect of criminal sanctions for having the temerity to weigh in on an election.

Senator McCain foolishly supposes that restrictions on political speech will lead to cleaner government. The opposite is assuredly true as valid political opposition will be snuffed out in the name of finance reform. And left unchecked, our elected leaders will edge ever more closely to absolute power and succumb to absolute corruption.

And as certainly as the night follows the day, the restrictions on speech that have begun with such supposedly benign intentions will become ever more onerous as the politically entrenched find even more cases of corruption to be cured by even greater restrictions on speech. In fact, after reflecting on the enormous impact that virtually unregulated 527 Groups such as Moveon.Org and Swiftboat Veterans for Truth had on the 2004 presidential election, Congress has already begun murmuring about the need for additional regulations to curb the influence of these political advocacy groups.

Significantly, John McCain has not lobbied so heavily for these speech regulations because he can point to any particular scandal involving fundraising (though it is a delicious irony that he was a founding member of the Keating 5) or other evidence of corruption. Indeed, there have been no allegations of clandestine payoffs or backroom payoffs. Rather, we are constantly informed of the climate of corruption that envelops Washington because of the enormous sums of money contributed for political campaigns. And somehow this is supposed to be remedied by imposing restrictions on speech...

Judging from the reaction to groups such as Moveon.Org an Swiftboat Veterans for Truth, the real crime according to Senator McCain is not the corruption caused by these groups, but their unregulated message. Of course, in this age of hyper-partisanship, isn't it just a bit odd that Democrats and Republicans can agree on at least this one issue? John Kerry's campaign was devastated by the message of Swiftboat Veterans for Truth while Republicans recognize that Moveon.Org will be a thorn in their side for years to come. Is there any wonder that the two parties are in a race to see which can pass the most comprehensive restrictions on political speech?

In his supreme arrogance, Senator McCain seemingly is blinded to the impact these these speech restrictions have on the liberty of Americans. While Senator McCain and his like-minded cohorts on the Supreme Court invent increasingly new rights that lack any foundation in our Constitution, they are ready in an instant to abandon those rights clearly delineated in our Bill of Rights. In their upside-down world, the right to engage in sodomy is afforded greater protection than the right to voice one's opinion on a presidential campaign.

And our liberties continue to be eroded as a result. Senator McCain would do well to remember another quote from Lord Acton: "Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end." Unfortunately for all Americans, Senator McCain is more concerned that the trains run on time.