Thursday, October 05, 2006

Do you need to lie in order to mislead?

An Evangelical Covenant coleague and friend who pastors a church in Iowa has posted a very interesting comment on wether or not we have been lied to by the Bush administration or simplyb been mislead. I like the nuance he brings to criticism of the Bush administration and its truth telling or lack there of. You can read his thoughts here.

His nuanced argument brought to the fore something I have been struggling with most critics of the Bush administration: while I agree with many, maybe most of the critics there seems to be a lack of careful attention to the ways in which the Bush administration is subtle even careful to create appearances and to step over lines by stepping on them, rather than simple and overt transgression. Now some may feel that the appropriate resonponce to this diseptively keeping up appearances is to not bother with the intricacies of what might be happening and simply state things as though the logical end is already here.
This is my sense of objections to the recent MilitaryTribunals bill the passed congress. (I am here in part thinking of comments I heard at the ACLU dinner on Saturday)I agree that it is deeply problematic and sets very bad precedent in terms of portecting our civil liberties, yet it seems to me that it is not a direct threat to my civil liberties. This does not mean that we should not oppose what is happening but lets be careful and fight nuance with nuance. Lets just come out and say it the civil liberties of others is as important as our own. Everything I have read even portions of the bill itself nothing leads me to think that "enemy combatant" is going to become this umbrella term. Not that at some point down the road it could, I agree that is a threat but, the point really is that this violates the civil liberties of people who are currently being charged as "non-combatants" who are alleged to have been in actual combat with the US. We should care about this because we should care about the rights of people who are our enemies even if they wouldn't care about our human and civil rights. the point is not that the Military Tribunal bill is a direct threat to my civil liberities, though it could lead there at some point down the road.

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