Dear Barack Obama

Please stop trash talking Hillary Clinton. This is what I’m talking about:

The “Annie Oakley” reference is completely uncalled for here and you should know better.

h/t egalia for the clip. Read the rest of this entry »

In case you missed it…

The Mid-South got hit with some bad tornadoes the other day, and they sure could use some help. Monkeyfister has the information you need to get help to people in the area. At least 54 people have been confirmed killed, so far. You should also see some of the photographs of the tornado that just missed Monkeyfister by a few miles.

Posted in Request. 1 Comment »

“The doctors who examined Corporal Tillman urged a criminal investigation into his death be opened at that time, and were refused.”

An open letter to the NFL and NFL Players Association (via):

August 13, 2007

Roger Goodell
Commissioner
National Football League
280 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10017

Gene Upshaw
Executive Director
NFL Players Association
1133 20th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20036

Dear Commissioner Goodell and Mr. Upshaw,

On behalf of the veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, and those troops still in theater, we are writing to ask that the National Football League and NFL Players Association publicly or privately urge President Bush to reconsider his decision to invoke claims of executive privilege in refusing to share vital documents regarding the death of Corporal Pat Tillman with the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

As you know, earlier this month the Associated Press obtained the medical examiner’s finding at the time of his death in Afghanistan, that Corporal Tillman’s fatal wounds seemed to indicate shots fired from ten yards away, or less. The doctors who examined Corporal Tillman urged a criminal investigation into his death be opened at that time, and were refused. Since that time, the Department of Defense has put forth two explanations for the death of Corporal Tillman, the first of which was proven false, and a second which now seems to have been proven to be a lie, as well. In both cases, the White House has actively pushed these false findings to the public.

Read the rest of this entry »

One year of blogging

I probably talk too much about myself as it is, and the posts that I’ve made that I’m proudest of aren’t always the most popular ones so maybe I should just let my readers judge for themselves.

What do you think I could do differently in the next year and which posts do you like the most and want to see more of? Less of? Should I keep going for another year?

Please tell me honestly what you think.

Pass it on

Would you please take one minute to call your member of Congress and ask him or her to vote in favor of the medical marijuana amendment that the U.S. House of Representatives will be voting on next week?

It’s easy: Just call the Capitol switchboard operator at (202) 224-3121. Give the operator your zip code and ask to be connected to your U.S. House member; you don’t even need to know your congressperson’s name to do this.

When the receptionist for the congressperson — not the Capitol switchboard operator — answers, say something like: “Hi, this is [name]. I live in [city], and I’m calling to ask that my representative vote for Rep. Maurice Hinchey’s [HIN-chee’s] medical marijuana amendment to the Justice Department’s spending bill, which I understand will be considered on the House floor next week. The amendment would prohibit the Justice Department from spending taxpayer money to arrest medical marijuana patients in the 12 states where medical marijuana is legal.”

Please call now: (202) 224-3121

If it isn’t made in America…

Litbrit:

Tell Congress in no uncertain terms that you, the American consumer and voter, want Country Of Origin Labels (COOL) legislation enacted immediately. You can contact members of the U.S. Senate here, and the House of Representatives here.

HLS Class of ’82 calls for an independent counsel

An open letter to Alberto Gonzales, published May 15, 2007 in the Washington Post. Via Specious Reasoning, hat-tip Phoenix Woman.

Dear Attorney General Gonzales:

Twenty-five years ago we, like you, graduated from Harvard Law School. While we arrived via many different paths and held many different views, we were united in our deep respect for the Constitution and the rights it guaranteed. As members of the post-Watergate generation who chose careers in law, we understood the strong connection between our liberties as Americans and the adherence of public officials to the law of the land. We knew that the choice to abide by the law was even more critical when public officials were tempted to take legal shortcuts. Nowhere were we taught that the ends justified the means, or that the freedoms for which Americans had fought and died should be set aside when inconvenient or challenging. To the contrary: our most precious freedoms, we learned, need defending most in times of crisis.

So it has been with dismay that we have watched your cavalier handling of our fredoms time and again. When it has been important that legal boundaries hold unbridled government power in check, you have instead used pretextual rationales and strained readings to justify an ever-expanding executive authority. Witness your White House memos sweeping aside the Geneva Conventions to justify torture, endangering our own servicemen and women; witness your advice to the President effectively reading Habeas Corpus out of our constitutional protections; witness your support of presidential signing statements claiming inherent power to wiretap American citizens without warrants (and the Administration’s stepped-up wiretapping campaign, taking advantage of those statements, which continues on your watch to this day); and witness your dismissive explanation of the troubling firings of numerous U.S. Attorneys, and their replacement with others more “loyal” to the President’s politics, as merely “an overblown personnel matter.” In these and other actions, we see a pattern. As a recent editorial put it, your approach has come to symbolize “disdain for the separation of powers, civil liberties and the rule of law.”

As lawyers, and as a matter of principle, we can no longer be silent about this Administration’s consistent disdain for the liberties we hold dear. Your failure to stand for the rule of law, particularly when faced with a President who makes the aggrandized claim of being a unitary executive, takes this country down a dangerous path.

Your country and your President are in dire need of an attorney who will do the tough job of providing independent counsel, especially when the advice runs counter to political expediency. Now more than ever, our country needs a President, and an Attorney General, who remember the apt observation attributed to Benjamin Franklin: “Those who would give up essential Liberty to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” We call on you and the President to relent from this reckless path, and begin to restore respect for the rule of law we all learned to love many years ago.

Yours truly,

[Ffty-six signatories]

THESE SIGNATORIES ARE ALL MEMBERS OF THE HARVARD LAW SCHOOL CLASS OF 1982