Monday, February 11

Monday Morning Olio, Here's Your Pope Hat, What's Your Hurry? Edition

• Not that I could possibly have invested any energy in it, but I did technically have a dog in last night's Grammy hunt for the first time since, well, ever.  Youngster name'a John Fullbright.

So, of course, "Americana" was awarded off camera, because most "Americana" artists do not do much unison strutting, being connected to instruments an' all, and the winner was Bonnie Raitt, because of course it was. And I like Bonnie. Even if I didn't I wouldn't say so, because I sleep soundly and my Poor Wife is still able to lift a cast-iron pan.

• Congratulations, sir, on the Jennifer Rubin endorsement:
Others in the wake of CIA director nominee John Brennan’s confirmation hearing have lost it. A gross executive overreach! Find a court to tell the president whom to kill ! You really would have thought that Abraham Lincoln needed court approval for Sherman’s March to the Sea or that Harry S. Truman needed to check with Congress before dropping the atomic bomb on Japan that could well have killed some Americans.

An historian and a legal scholar! And every bit as good at the one as the other. One of the basic requirements in choosing the four targets for the two atomic bombings was that there be no known Allied prisoner of war camps in the cities.  [Nonetheless, twelve American POWs died at Hiroshima, and eight Allied prisoners (British and Dutch) died at Nagasaki. That's the two cities where the bombs were dropped, Jen.]

Truman had an actual declaration of war in hand. Lincoln did not, because doing so would have been a tacit admission that the Confederate States was a separate political entity, thereby nullifying the whole point of the exercise.

We can go from there to note that no one was arrested, convicted, or killed by noose or drone, due to "treason" in the American Civil War. One William Bruce Mumford was hanged by Ben Butler's men in New Orleans for tearing down an American flag, but he was charged with violating Martial Law. The conspirators in Lincoln's assassination were, but that was after the war. No one has ever been charged with "aiding the enemy" when there wasn't any enemy declared. Authorizations for executive action do not reach the level.

Which means that if you wanna start frying people indiscriminately for "enemy" actions, it's all very simple and straightforward: declare war. Like the Constitution and the Bible have it. Then it's clear-cut. Then you don't need no fucking memo. (You'd still need one for that little torture program you liked so much, because that violates American law.)

Do me a favor and explain this to John Yoo next time you see him.

This is why we can't have nice things:
It is no secret that young voters tilt left on social issues like immigration and gay rights. But these students, and dozens of other young people interviewed here last week, give voice to a trend that is surprising pollsters and jangling the nerves of Republicans. On a central philosophical question of the day — the size and scope of the federal government — a clear majority of young people embraces President Obama’s notion that it can be a constructive force, a point he intends to make in his State of the Union address on Tuesday.

Surprising pollsters! Because the "central" philosophical question of the day is supposed to pit them against the Freeloading Olds, and never a thought for the fact that they themselves might be afflicted with Old someday, or disabled in the next two minutes. Why, Paul Ryan himself says so. And he should know. He wears his hat backwards.

Christ on a cracker. Speaking of which, isn't it about time we had a woman Pope?


rickterp said...

No diss on Bonnie Raitt intended (it's decent album), but I'm not sure how anyone who listened to Slipstream with half an ear could call it "Americana." Categories are slippery, but it clearly belongs in the "Blues" category.

Robert M. said...

Thanks to our host for that clip, because it kicked my ass; hopefully some of my $8 on iTunes actually makes it to the kid.

Li'l Innocent said...

What's that boy, 19 years old??

Gives one hope, doesn't it!

I'd like to believe that there are precious few females who'd want to be Pope. What kind of life is that, wearing all that weighty claptrap and constantly dealing with backstabbing intriguing wheelerdealerism on every side? I suppose it's an opportunity to do some good, but they'd have to change the wardrobe before *I'd* consider it, let me tell ya.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Jenghazi has been on a roll, lately.

Heckuva jerb, Fred Hiatt!

Anonymous said...

A female pope.
Why haven't I thought of that?
Our local Cardinal, Geogeous George Pell, is off to Rome in a couple of days. I'll let him know.
John C

Anonymous said...

A Declaration of War wasn't necessary for the War of Southern Treason because Congress has the power to "suppress Insurrections" and Congress did authorize Lincoln to suppress the Confederate insurrection.

Furthermore, Rubin, Yoo and other warmongers inaccurately interpret the "Commander-in-Chief" clause, based on the unstated and false equating of "Commander-in-Chief" to "King". In fact, the English Kings were not the "Commanders-in-Chief" of the English/British forces -- for example, General Gage was the British Commander-in-Chief for North America through 1776. The British Commanders-in-Chief were appointed by Parliament and Washington was appointed Commander-in-Chief by the Continental Congress.

Buttermilk Sky said...

Maj. Henry Wirtz, the commandant of Andersonville, was tried and hanged for, you know, being the commandant of Andersonville. I've often thought that hanging a few other rebs would have sent a message that would have welcome resonance to this day, but nobody asked me.