Monday, March 07, 2005

John Ashcroft: Still Not Getting It

This was supposed to be included a while ago, but things have been busy (as the sporadic entries have shown). Please forgive me.

John Ashcroft decided to try to take a few parting shots at his critics (which would actually include members of his own party). Some highlights, with the CNB reaction:

  • "Criminals can't commit crimes from behind prison walls."

As with all Ashcroft sayings (this one meant to explain statistics showing lower rates of commission of violent crimes), it is full of presumption, and has questionable (if any) practical application. CNB wonders if Ashcroft would defend the death penalty by using "Dead men tell no tales." In that regard, CNB notes that in that same speech, he said "terrorists can't harm Americans from behind bars or beyond the grave."

  • Former Atty. Gen. Ed Meese (best known for his 1986 commission that investigated pornograpy), said Ashcroft was a man who "served with dignity, integrity and excellence."

CNB would certainly hate to see who did not meet this exacting standard (as the Iran-Contra boys evidently did, by selling arms to people who had killed U.S. Marines). CNB wonders if Mr. Meese, who resigned in 1988 surrounded by questions about his finances and his role in the now-all-but-forgotten Iran-Contra scandal also feels he served with "dignity, integrity and excellence."

In the great tradition of these men, Ashcroft's successor, Alberto Gonzales, recently announced that one of his top priorities is aggressively prosecuting obscenity cases. CNB wonders if the punishment will include waterboarding.