Your Lying Eyes

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12 June 2005

War on Terror - Another Over-hyped Fraud?

Could be. What if you created a vast bureaucracy to defeat an enemy that doesn't exist - say, domestic terrorists? This Washington Post story points out how very few of the people arrested ended up getting convicted on terrorism charges. In many cases the suspects only end up admitting to very minor offenses (such as lying on a loan application) for which they get deported.
The Bush administration is claiming that it's much like Bobby Kennedy's war on the Mafia, where mafiosi were convicted of run of the mill offences due to the difficulty of getting convictions on the real crimes they did. The article rightly dismisses this comparison since it seems most of the terror suspects had no relationship to terrorism to begin with. But the war on organized crime forms an important part of the legacy of the war on terrorism and drugs. A crime had always required intent to commit the crime. You had to actually intended to commit the criminal act. But in order to throw gangsters into jail, we made laws that require no intent - that in fact require no actual criminal act. This is why it's critical to never talk to a federal agent about anything - because if you make any kind of misstatement, you can be charged with making false statements. Our legal system is ugly and getting uglier.


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