Bad Signs, Cont.
34 minutes ago
The irony is that there's not that much ideological opposition to worthwhile public works projects. There's some, but most objections are much more consistent with the old-fashioned country-club-style fiscal conservatism everyone claims to miss. The white elephants are just too expensive to build, and they often seem to be aimed at disguising wealth distribution, either to favored unions or to favored donors.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, President Bush's allegedly tardy response was seen as proof that conservatism itself was inadequate to the demands of responsible government. But it wasn't conservatism that had some volunteer firefighters out of commission because they were in Atlanta for sexual harassment training and video tutorials about how great FEMA is.
On the record Brown refused to identify Karl Rove as the mastermind behind the Republican response. Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco was less reticent. "This is exactly what we were living but could not bring ourselves to believe. Karl Rove was playing politics while our people were dying. The federal effort was delayed, and now the public knows why. It's disgusting."~
This report has been widely circulated and discussed among international law experts who trade notes about its interpretation of the San Remo Manual and the various theories advanced by Israel to advance its blockade, and it has gotten intense attention in the press in Europe and in Turkey. But it has drawn remarkably little attention from the press in the United States. Even the New York Times, whose editorial pages previously included dueling columns about the significance of Doğan’s death and the flotilla incident, has not even mentioned the report’s existence, notwithstanding the fact that it deals with the death of an American citizen. Why might that be?
The circumstances of the killing of at least six of the passengers were in a manner consistent with an extra-legal, arbitrary and summary execution. Furkan Doğan and İbrahim Bilgen were shot at near range while the victims were lying injured on the top deck. Cevdet Kiliçlar, Cengiz Akyüz, Cengiz Songür and Çetin Topçuoğlu were shot on the bridge deck while not participating in activities that represented a threat to any Israeli soldier. In these instances and possibly other killings on the Mavi Marmara, Israeli forces carried out extra- legal, arbitrary and summary executions prohibited by international human rights law, specifically article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.