GLENN GREENWALD LINKED TO ME (ok, at one remove, but to MY WRITING)

February 10, 2009 at 12:48pm

OK, this is nothing but tooting my own horn. Nothing. Toot. Toot. Don't wanna hear my horn tooting (and I don't blame you), you might as well stop reading right now.

I couldn't be more fucking excited! Really, if I'd just won $100,000,000 my ecstasy wouldn't feel the slightest bit different! As anyone knows who knows me well (or who has read my 25 things), I'm monstrously addicted to the writing of Glenn Greenwald, in my view the most intelligent, nuanced, lucid, sarcastic, and powerful -- and most self-consciously moral -- daily political writer around. Honestly, the first thing I do when I wake up, even if I'm just getting up to pee and then to go back to sleep, is check to see if Glenn's written anything new, cuz reading him just makes me happy.

Today, as always when reading his blog, I follow out all his links and scan those pages as well. Among the pages he links to is a post at the blog "Inside-Out the Beltway," by a lawyer who goes by "Chris in DC," a post which is little more than an extended quotation of a comment I made at another blog, surrounded by praise! So Greenwald's linking to a post that's mainly quoting me with approval!

And Chris in DC says some really sweet things!!!! The best:

As is the case too many times to count, the so-called expert defender of the status quo gets schooled, rather easily and embarrassingly, by a practically nameless commenter. Long live the great democracy of the Internet.
OK, so it's a little left-handed, but I don't mind.

Admittedly, it's not beautiful prose (I wrote it drunk at 3:00 AM). There are, in my view, more praiseworthy morsels of my writing that I'd love for Glenn (or anyone) to read. And many people's eyes may glaze over at the particular legal arguments (and misunderstandings of them) I'm getting outraged about. But seriously, being linked to by Glenn Greenwald has been my secret fantasy since I discovered him. It's like he blew me a kiss! Even at second hand, I'll take it!

Anyway, here's the entire post from "Inside-Out the Beltway" to which Glenn linked, entitled Say It Ain't So II (my original comment in its entirety is here):

Last night, I said "Say It Ain't So" with regard to the Obama DOJ's decision to continue asserting the state secrets privilege to shield extraordinary rendition practices from public view. Unfortunately, it does appear to be so, but in many ways, it ain't what Marc Ambinder at The Atlantic says (although not in a good way)...

In addition to the very basic and fundamental errors by Ambinder that were pointed out by Greenwald, a commenter to Ambinder's post makes some more very astute corrections (emphasis and paragraph breaks my own):

Your writing that "[i]t wouldn't be wise for a new administration to come in, take over a case from a prosecutor, and completely change a legal strategy in mid-course without a more thorough review of the national security implications" suggests two things: (1) that you don't understand that the government is the defendant in this proceeding, not a "prosecutor" and (2) that you believe the "national security implications" involved are vastly more complicated than they are, requiring a great deal of study for the Obama DOJ just to get up to speed. They're not.

The assertion is fairly straightforward: evidence that the government kidnapped and delivered innocent people to torturers is in the public domain; books have been written about it; so to claim a priori that the whole subject may not be approached by a court, and all cases regarding such a program must be dismissed out of hand, is fatuous. And, for what it's worth, the DOJ could certainly have requested, and would very likely have received, a continuance, had it required one before delivering its opinion at the hearing. It did not request one.

It sided wholeheartedly with the vile, indefensible, and utterly un-American position of the Bush administration: that the Executive branch of the U.S. government by brandishing its own self-serving and arbitrary definition of threats to national security may simply avoid being brought to trial ever regarding any actions, even obviously heinous felonies, it doesn't want to answer to in court.

As is the case too many times to count, the so-called expert defender of the status quo gets schooled, rather easily and embarrassingly, by a practically nameless commenter. Long live the great democracy of the Internet.