Xah Lee's Unixism

Chuck Dillon spam at nimblegen.com
Fri Sep 10 21:12:36 CEST 2004

Grant Edwards wrote:

> What makes you think that the current US government gives a
> shit about international agreements?  Bush thinks he's entitled
> to declare anybody and everybody an "enemy combatant" and lock
> them up in secret forever.  Add a moustache and he'd make a
> pretty good Stalin.

Such statements only underscore the incredible ignorance of the author 
or his/her assumption of ignorance in the reader.  President != 
Dictator.  The U.S. President is limited to two four year terms so if 
someone is locked up "forever" the power to do so must extend far 
beyond any President.  Fully one third of Americans are Democrats and 
our press is still free (not necessarily without bias but free).  You 
must think W a genius to think he could pull something like that off.

So, lets say you are an elected official on 9/12/01, the day after we 
lost *only* 3K out of the potentially 20-30K folks that could have been 
killed (that's how many folks spent their day in those towers).  You no 
longer have any frame of reference for the magnitude or imminence of 
risk of an attack elsewhere in country.  How much time do you spend 
studying up international treaties before you decide how to act?

Say Bush did study the treaties and we failed to stop an attack and 
some other 3k folks got fried a few months later.  Would you be 
supporting his re-election today or be slamming him for being indecisive?

-- ced

Chuck Dillon
Senior Software Engineer
NimbleGen Systems Inc.

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