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obama to sign indefinite detention bill into law

December 15, 2011

When I’ve said in the past that there’s not much difference between Republicans and Democrats in practice, it’s things like this that I’m referring to, where the current Democratic president is continuing, and even expanding, the previous Republican president’s policies, going so far as to enshrine indefinite detention without trial into US law:

Obama to sign indefinite detention bill into law

Ultimately, I don’t think the problem lies within the two dominant political parties themselves so much as within the structure of the system itself, which actively promotes a two party duopoly, produces toxic accumulations of both wealth and power (which seem to go hand in hand in politics), and serves to protect the economic, legal, and political hegemony of the ruling class. That’s why it seems to me that, even when people who have the best interests of the citizenry in mind get elected to office, the system often forces their hand and they end up being like every other politician, or else the system just runs them over (metaphorically speaking, of course).

Hence, the candidate in 2008 who, assuming he was genuine, strongly criticized what he called “the Bush Administration’s attempt to create a legal black hole at Guantanamo,” now continues where his predecessor left off by being a proponent of, and codifying into law, what the Bush administration argued the original 2001 AUMF against terrorism already empowered them to do, i.e., to, in the words of Greenwald, “imprison people without charges, use force against even U.S. citizens without due process (Anwar Awlaki), and target not only members of Al Qaeda and the Taliban (as the law states) but also anyone who ‘substantially supports’ those groups and/or ‘associated forces’ (whatever those terms mean).”

In my opinion, once people start to realize that voting for one party or the other (an electoral version of the ‘lesser of two evils‘ principle) doesn’t really make that much of a difference, that there’s something inherently wrong with the system itself, the better off we’ll be.

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