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Saturday, May 23, 2009

Glenn Greenwald on preventive detention

It's not just the right, but the duty, of citizens to pressure and criticize political leaders when they adopt policies that one finds objectionable or destructive. Criticism of this sort is a vital check on political leaders -- a key way to impose accountability -- and Obama himself has said as much many times before.

It has nothing to do with personalities or allegiances. It doesn't matter if one "likes" or "trusts" Obama or thinks he's a good or bad person. That's all irrelevant. The only thing that matters is whether one thinks that the actions he's undertaking are helpful or harmful. If they're harmful, one should criticize them. Where, as here, they're very harmful and dangerous, one should criticize them loudly. Obama himself, according to Ambinder, "finds this outside pressure healthy and useful." And it is. It's not only healthy and useful but absolutely vital.

-- from "Facts and myths about Obama's preventive detention proposal" by Glenn Greenwald at http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2009/05/22/preventive_detention/index.html

Preventive detention is the antithesis of true liberalism. Even supporters of Obama need to line up, criticize him for this dumb and dangerous idea, and pressure him to abandon it.


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