December 23, 2009

I say Obama never intended to close Guantanamo.

So the Guantanamo detainees won't be moved to Illinois after all? I am so not surprised.
While Mr. Obama has acknowledged that he would miss the Jan. 22 deadline for closing [Guantanamo] that he set shortly after taking office, the administration appeared to take a major step forward last week when he directed subordinates to move “as expeditiously as possible” to acquire the Thomson Correctional Center, a nearly vacant maximum-security Illinois prison, and to retrofit it to receive Guantánamo detainees.

But in interviews this week, officials estimated that it could take 8 to 10 months to install new fencing, towers, cameras and other security upgrades before any transfers take place. Such construction cannot begin until the federal government buys the prison from the State of Illinois.

The federal Bureau of Prisons does not have enough money to pay Illinois for the center, which would cost about $150 million. Several weeks ago, the White House approached the House Appropriations Committee and floated the idea of adding about $200 million for the project to the military spending bill for the 2010 fiscal year, according to administration and Congressional officials.

But Democratic leaders refused to include the politically charged measure in the legislation. When lawmakers approved the bill on Dec. 19, it contained no financing for Thomson.
Well, of course. Why throw way $150 million — or $200 million — building another facility when these people are already safely and securely detained in Guantanamo? Symbolism? Too expensive! And also politically unpopular. I think Obama knew when he announced the Thomson plan that the Democrats in Congress would oppose him. He didn't want the transfer to happen and he didn't think it would happen. He has never intended to close Guantanamo. I was pretty sure of that last January. He has only intended to appease the folks who wanted him to and to make it possible to claim that he really tried.

128 comments:

David said...

No, it's worse.

He intended to close Gitmo, in the broad and loose sense of intent, but had never thought through the consequences and technical issues involved.

Maguro said...

Oh noes, that is completely unacceptable! Keeping Gitmo open make us super-unpopular and destroy our standing in the world. Those snobby French waiters will hassle me about human rights the next time I visit Paris and try to order that raw hamburger stuff in a cafe. I'm shattered.

Or do we not give a shit about that anymore?

Palladian said...

Why are people surprised? They happily and knowingly elected a liar; When I used to challenge Obama supporters about his anti-gay-marriage position, they'd invariably reply "Oh, he doesn't really mean that, he's just saying it because America is a bigoted country and he needs to say it to get elected. Afterwards, he'll do what's right and what he believes".

So if he was lying about that to appease people, why does it surprise people that he's also probably lying about everything else?

You reap what you sow. Suck it, enraged lefties. You knew what you were getting. Don't pretend to be surprised to discover that the lies also cover positions you don't favor.

I'm not actually sure the lying covers political positions and beliefs of any kind. I believe that on many issues Obama doesn't have any real firm beliefs and ideas at all. He'll take whatever position seems expedient to him when he has to, but the lying covers up the fact that he actually doesn't really care.

Surprise! He's a politician!

verification word: mater. Obama had too much mater und not enough vater.

garage mahal said...

You reap what you sow. Suck it, enraged lefties.

Where are all these enraged lefties you speak of.

David said...

For Obama the Gitmo issue was and is purely about votes. What's another $150 million in tax money for a few votes when billions are spent for the same goal?

Geoff Matthews said...

I think David, and Palladian, have it. Obama picks up issues that seem popular, but he doesn't think about how to accomplish them UNTIL he's in a position where he has to accomplish them.

He can no longer vote 'present'.

Julius Ray Hoffman said...

It doesn't matter. He's the leader of military and as such he can do whatever he wants to enemy combatants (roughly defined as being captured during "hostilities" on a "battlefield", which these guys were). He can keep them in Guantanamo, transfer them to Illinois, water-board them, bring them to trial or not, whatever... We need to trust that the Commander-In-Chief is making the right decision.

The conservatives demanded that complete flexibility be accorded to W. in regard to these bad guys, and if we are going to be consistent then we need to allow Obama to have complete flexibility with them too.

Comrade X said...

sa far Obama has exposed 2 people on this thread

edutcher said...

No, he intended, because he has the same worldview as Jean Francois Kerry, but somebody finally got it through his faux aristocratic head that this would be a really bad idea if some of those animals got loose.

Too bad Holder didn't get the same word regarding KSM.

garage mahal said...

You reap what you sow. Suck it, enraged lefties.

Where are all these enraged lefties you speak of.


Bitching all over the Net and on Fox about how HarryCare is not the Commie wonderland they hoped it would be and Bambi has turned into Dubya.

John said...

"You reap what you sow. Suck it, enraged lefties.

Where are all these enraged lefties you speak of."


Maybe there are not any. But if there are not it means that lefties have no values or beliefs in anything beyond power. If lefities are not enraged by Obama keeeping GUITMO open, that means they were lying pieces of shit when they screamed about it under Bush.

That of course is not a suprise. Lefties have always been unprincipled and interested in nothing but power.

Comrade X said...

the gitmo promise was why I voted for Obama.

it reminded me of the forfeit in Dodgeball, "interesting stategy Cotton, let's see how it works out"

pretty much as I expected.

Scott M said...

It's either double-speak from the left, which is more the rule than the norm these days, or Ann's right.

I think the real story lies more in why the Illinois Democrats refused to include the matter in their session.

garage mahal said...

Bitching all over the Net and on Fox about how HarryCare is not the Commie wonderland they hoped it would be and Bambi has turned into Dubya.

I though they are all programmed Obamabots who worship the Messiah. Oh, that will be the next thread.

Shanna said...

He intended to close Gitmo, in the broad and loose sense of intent, but had never thought through the consequences and technical issues involved.

That’s what it seems like to me. What do you know, there are reasons to house people there instead of here!

If he really wanted it closed he would be ramming it through despite all opposition like health care.

Henry said...

The extent to which Obama really doesn't seem to care about stuff is surprising. Yet it's always been there. It's part of his mystique - the rational observer, the cool cucumber.

In the election season, moderates read his detachment as the ability to be objective. It should help him be objective. And in one area -- national security -- he has demonstrated some objectivity. I give him lots of credit for his decisions (if not his promptness) regarding Gitmo and Afghanistan.

But in a very specific way, national security is easy for a president. It's his portfolio. He owns it. He can't palm it off on Congress.

When he can palm off problems on Congress, Obama has surrendered his role. He's a Zelig of a president, most comfortable when he can go along and get along with his peers -- the left-wing drift of a center-left herd.

And there he is.

Cedarford said...

David said...
No, it's worse.

He intended to close Gitmo, in the broad and loose sense of intent, but had never thought through the consequences and technical issues involved.


I think David is right.

-------------
Like Afghanistan and a dozen other issues, his TelePrompter writers are masters at making him sound good...but they are all just good writer hacks selected from various Axelrod domestic campaigns. None of them personally have a clue how to solve the problems they claimed the Black Messiah would solve as they handed the product off to his soaring oratory.

------------------
That said, it is anal to hold to stupid pledges the press then fixates on as sole criteria of success or failure, purely based on if a deadline is met.
The Senate got into that with the anal deadline of Health Care MUST be done by Christmas. Well, they got their vote..the media applauded...now people are looking at the pile of crap their premiums will almost all go up to pay for...the exact opposite of the promise of covering more while checking the explosion in insurance premium costs. Olympia Snowe said...essentially...what is the fucking rush when full rollout doesn't happen until 2014?

Yeah, they could have met the stupid "closing GITMO in 365 sacred immutable days!" deadline. The problem is that would leave another huge pile of "unsecured Evildoers in the Heartland with ACLU lawyers busy trying to free them" crap. So credit Obama with - like with Afghanistan - partially extricating himself from Axelrod speechwriter promises he was fed, then parrotted.

One area where Obama is much better than Bush is shutting up Euroweenies and progressive jewish lawyers fronting the human/terrorist rights advocacy groups.
The hapless once -proclaimed "American Churchill" said "fuck you" to the Euros, NYTimes, and Kenneth Roth...enraging them further.

Obama says "great idea!" lets take those Islamoids you have such heartaches over their precious rights...and get them out of GITMO. Except there will be delays, so why not accept the Islamoids into France or Belgium? And Roth...use your immense moral authority as a enemy rights watchdog to ask other nations to take your beloved Islamoid combatants....
Nothing shuts up a EuroLefty or Human Rights Watch functionary or ACLU lawyer than being asked to stop lecturing others on their moral deficiencies and take in an "innocent Yemeni goatherder" caught 2,800 miles away "simply attending a wedding party in Waziristan". Now they fear that phone call from the White House asking them to help relocate a "innocent suspect held without trial" to their own backyard.

So, being NIMBYs, they have all mostly shut up about the people they were championing under obstinate Bush.

Flexo said...

He didn't intend to close it, he only intended to release everyone that is there.

bagoh20 said...

"
I though(sic) they are all programmed Obamabots who worship the Messiah. Oh, that will be the next thread."


That's how bad he is. He's even hurt many of the faithful. But, many will continue to have faith in him. Like those who still show up for mass with the pedophile priest. Will we see you in church this week Garage?

traditionalguy said...

That smile is so good that he expects to win with a smile and a lie. Obama will not lower himself to be bound by the truth when he has his winning show he can put on. The truth about losing in Afghanistan, the truth about giving in to Iran, the truth about no jobs stimulus, the truth about actual Death Panels, the truth about not closing Gitmo, the truth about CO2 being harmless...nothing matters except his story and his smile. The question is when will the MSM will start to tell some truth that exposes the stories he continually tells.

Scott M said...

He intended to close Gitmo, in the broad and loose sense of intent, but had never thought through the consequences and technical issues involved.

I think David is right.


From the perspective of having a competent government, isn't this the worst possibility in an array of unsavory possibilities? Ideological rants (from both sides) aside, incompetence in many facets of governance seem to be plaguing this administration.

garage mahal said...

Not closing GTMO is like getting raped by a priest. Interesting, bagoh20.

I've said many times, anytime you catch yourself getting disappointed in Obama, just remember this, and what could have been.

Chase said...

Where are all these enraged lefties you speak of.

Please.

Is there really any other kind?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Obama is - and I hate to have to say it as a conservative opponent - just like very other politician: they say things they don't completely mean, and yes, that goes for the ones on the right that I admire as well. You do it too - what was that answer you last gave your wife when she asked if what she was wearing made her look fat?

The point isn't that politicians say or imply things that they don't mean. The point is that when you decide you are going to vote for someone, you are hopefully looking for

•1)where he/she stands on the issues

•2)whether he/she has the character necessary to accomplish something on those stands.

•3)he/she has the resume of experience - and not "intent" - proving that he/she can accomplish such.


So now if you are a leftie that hoped in, voted for, and are now disappointed in Obama - you failed in fully examining at least 2 out of the 3 criteria above.

So who you gonna blame now?

MayBee said...

He is someone who thinks up ideas.
He is not someone who thinks through ideas.

A thinker-up, not a thinker-through.

Brian said...

I've said many times, anytime you catch yourself getting disappointed in Obama, just remember this, and what could have been.

That's right garage. Thank God we have Biden as V.P. Otherwise, we might have had a VP who said cringe-worthy things while in office.

After all, it's the VP who made the decision to bring KSM to New York and send the Gitmo detainees to Illinois. And keep the Patriot Act. Obama simply went along with it.

PatCA said...

Could he really have intended to close Gitmo, and take the chance that Islamists would still hate us? What happens, then, when we have another attack, either from abroad or from the likes of Nidal Hasan? Makes his reasoning look pretty weak.

Chase said...

Lefties have always been unprincipled and interested in nothing but power.

The purpose statement of the American left, it's central moral principle:

"Whatever"

BrianE said...

I disagree.

He intended to move the illegal combatants to Illinois. That's clear to me given the location-- his favorite pork producing state.

It would be a stimulus to the locals, who would probably be grateful for some jobs. He assumed congress would roll, especially given the lip service the liberals in congress had given to closing gitmo.

Think of this as Olympics redux only the slapdown is delivered by Al Franken this time.

holdfast said...

The point is not to hold Obama to a stupid, ignorant, lying promise - the point is to show that this is his M.O., that nothing that spews from his TOTUS can be trusted, and that he is dangerously naive on matters of national security.

garage mahal said...

So who you gonna blame now?

What are you talking about? I'll say it again, whatever his faults are [and there are many], they pale in comparison to what the only other alternative was. And I'm guessing that was the motive for tens of millions of other people that voted for Obama. Will he ever live up to all the ridiculous strawmen from the Right? Never.

Paul Zrimsek said...

I assumed the enraged lefties in question were the ones who were enraged about Gitmo back when it was Bush keeping it open. I;m quite willing to believe they're enraged no more-- unprincipled hackery is a subject to which Garage brings a certain authority.

Der Hahn said...

Julius Ray Hoffman said...
It doesn't matter. He's the leader of military and as such he can do whatever he wants to enemy combatants …. The conservatives demanded that complete flexibility be accorded to W. in regard to these bad guys, and if we are going to be consistent then we need to allow Obama to have complete flexibility with them too.


This, like most lefty comments on this subject, is so boneheaded it’s almost not even wrong.

The classification of persons as PWs and the treatment of PWs are defined in the UCMJ and by treaty (Geneva Accords) to which the US is a signatory. They are not, and never have been, flexible definitions determined by the US CINC.

The response of the right to this blather has been to point out that certain individuals in Gitmo don’t meet the Geneva definition of PWs. The reply from the Left, as evidence by Hoffman’s comment, has been ‘we don’t care’.

Chase said...

I'll say it again, whatever his faults are [and there are many], they pale in comparison to what the only other alternative was.

Since it was McCain that was the only alternative to Obama, I'm like the majority of Americans today who are not so fast to agree with you.

garage mahal said...

And they can wait another 3yrs and vote again.

AllenS said...

It wasn't a lie, it was a pivot. Google "obama pivot".

Chase said...

unprincipled hackery is a subject to which Garage brings a certain authority.

Though I agree with your political points Paul, I'm not so fast to dump on garage. He's far more principled than some of the drive-bys here that are clearly just anti-anything "conservative", anti-Bush and anti-Althouse. He may be wrong on some issues but he's not intellectually dishonest as some of the trolls and lefties here are.

Patm said...

Of COURSE he never intended to close Gitmo.

He never intended to do any of the anti-Bush things he said he would do.

He was just canny enough to use all the convenient Bush hate hammers available to him.

Biggest dupes have been the press, who have spent their credibility on this lying creep.

AllenS said...

Here's another example from Politico: The White House privately anticipates health care talks to slip into February — past President Barack Obama’s first State of the Union address — and then plans to make a “very hard pivot” to a new jobs bill

Pivoter of the United States

Korla said...

Here's a question that I have not seen addressed: Who is the party in Obama's Illinois gang territory who stands to make a small fortune from the sale of this prison? Follow the money!

Cedarford said...

Chase said...re: Garage
"I'll say it again, whatever his faults are [and there are many], they pale in comparison to what the only other alternative was."

Since it was McCain that was the only alternative to Obama, I'm like the majority of Americans today who are not so fast to agree with you


*Scratches head*

Are you saying the majority of Americans voted for McCain????

Also - Last I looked, there seemed very little "I wish I voted for that erratic incoherent Amnesty, More Wars, and Cap 'n Trade guy" regret out there.

But He Served! He Suffered!

BFD! There are a couple million guys out there that served, suffered!!
It isn't enough to be a ticket to the Senate or the Presidency for any other person.
Marrying a multimillionaire beer heiress sure helps though.

Big Mike said...

Where are all those enraged lefities ...

Well, Jane Hamsher has shown up on Fox. Howard Dean has not been quiet about his anger. Barack Obama is losing the center and angering his base.

Very interesting Rasmussen poll posted yesterday: it shows 46% of the people polled strongly disapprove of Obama's job performance. It stands to reason that some of those 46% are disappointed lefties.

I confess that closing Guantanamo was one campaign promise that I had assumed Obama really would keep because it's pretty easy to keep. He could have reopened Alcatraz, he could have enlarged existing maximum security prisons like Marion or Leavenworth. Instead, at the 11 month mark, he makes a half-hearted attempt to try to use a prison out in rural Illinois, and that turns out to be as half-baked as it is half-hearted. Professor Althouse was right the first time.

Ann Althouse said...

So, there's the argument, which I thought of when I wrote the post and which has been raised in the comments, that the choice of Illinois shows he was sincere. Why didn't he pick another state instead of making it look like he was sending pork to his home state? I think that's part of the plot. He picked Illinois to give more cover to the Dems who would say no. It's an item of spending that should be struck, and they oppose him on this seeming home-state favoritism. He needs them to say no, and this gives them an excuse for opposing him.

Paco Wové said...

I think Garage's point is, it doesn't matter much what Obama does or does not do while in office. He's not one of those icky red-state people, and that's all that matters.

garage mahal said...

I think Garage's point is, it doesn't matter much what Obama does or does not do while in office. He's not one of those icky red-state people, and that's all that matters.

I doubted Obama would close it in a year, but I knew McPalin wouldn't close it ever. I can't think of any righties that want GTMO closed, so it's touching to see how much empathy they have and care so deeply about the feelings of liberals. Obama lied to them!

exhelodrvr1 said...

Geoff Mathews,
"He can no longer vote 'present'."

Seems to be doing a pretty job of it so far.

Eric said...

You reap what you sow. Suck it, enraged lefties.

You proceed from a false premise, Palladian. In order to be enraged people on the left would have had to have been operating from principle. Except for a tiny, tiny minority, the Gitmo complaints were nothing more than an expression of BDS. Now that Bush is gone it's no problem.

Jim in Bingo said...

All the Unicorn Rider cared about was getting elected.

Promising to close Gitmo and undo all those icky icky things that icky icky cowboy from Texas did helped him get elected.

And at the end of the day though all the UR is competent at is getting elected. After all, did he do anything at all once he got elected state senator and US senator?

No, he did bupkiss.

And as President the only thing he wants to do is get re-elected in 3 years.

To that end, he'll do the easy thing, the popular thing. He'll keep Gitmo open, he'll prosecute the war in Afghanistan, and he'll put off the healthcare thing until February, as is being reported today. And if it remains unpopular and divisive then, he'll punt it further down the road.

former law student said...

He has never intended to close Guantanamo.

When Obama made the announcement, he was thinking to send the detainees to Leavenworth Federal prison. But the Kansans threw a collective hissy fit, Kansan Senators going so fat as to block confirmation of Obama's nominees. Illinois is the only state that wants to hold them.

Big Mike said...

@garage, this is one of the 3 or 4 trillion ways you and I part company. Why close Guantanamo if all we're going to do is send its current denizens to some maximum security prison on US soil? Because some Europeans will like us better? Why should we care? Even if we do care, why do we think things will improve if all we do is move the detainees to a mainland prison?

former law student said...

Promising to close Gitmo and undo all those icky icky things that icky icky cowboy from Texas did helped him get elected.

Obama didn't realize what a giant bag of dicks the Republicans were, balking him at every turn. I'm surprised Obama's celebration of Christmas hasn't turned Republicans to Islam.

Maguro said...

But the Kansans threw a collective hissy fit, Kansan Senators going so fat as to block confirmation of Obama's nominees. Illinois is the only state that wants to hold them.

Good lord. Do you seriously believe this nonsense? It is impossible for two Republican Senators to block anything when the Dems have 60 seats in the Senate.

Try to think through some of your talking points before posting next time.

Sofa King said...

Obama didn't realize what a giant bag of dicks the Republicans were, balking him at every turn.

How could he not have known? He was in the senate, right? Was he paying any attention at all to the politics taking place there? Or was he really so naive that he bought into his own bullshit about how his election would be "transformational?"

I can believe his supporters might not have known, if they don't follow politics. But a sitting senator? How is that possible?

I wonder what else he doesn't know, if he's seemingly incapable of anticipating the utterly fucking obvious?

Maguro said...

Also - Leavenworth is already a Federal installation, why the fuck would Barry need Sam Brownback's permission to transfer Federal prisoners into the place?

former law student said...

Kansas City Business Journal
Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Brownback, Roberts trade: No Gitmo detainees for unblocking Obama appointees

Kansas Senators Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts have lifted legislative barriers to several Obama administration appointees in exchange for an apparent agreement that Guantanamo Bay detainees will not be relocated to Fort Leavenworth.

The two Kansas Republicans released a joint announcement Wednesday saying that they no longer will hold up the Senate appointment process for several Justice Department and Defense Department appointees.

This clears the way for several Senate approvals on key administration appointees, particularly that of Army Secretary John McHugh.

The announcement from Brownback and Roberts comes after negotiations left them confident that the Obama administration will not seek to place Guantanamo Bay detainees in Fort Leavenworth if and when Obama closes the controversial military prison in Cuba.

“We’re pretty confident they won’t be in Kansas,” said Sarah Little, spokeswoman for Roberts’s office.

Obama signed an executive order to close the detention camp in Cuba soon after taking office under the premise that the controversial prison for terrorism suspects is an international black eye to the United States’ reputation.

Obama’s announcement has drawn consistent fire since then, particularly from Roberts and Brownback, who said the potential relocation of detainees to Leavenworth would be unsafe for the community.

Fort Leavenworth’s prison facilities, formally known as the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, is listed as the only maximum-security correctional facility in the Department of Defense, according to the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center’s Web site.

Its mission is defined as a long-term lockup for military prisoners. It contains 515 beds and became operational in 2002.

Roberts said Aug. 3 that moving the “100 most dangerous terrorists in the world” to Fort Leavenworth “threatens the mission of the base and endangers the entire community.”

Roberts also rejects the notion of closing Guantanamo Bay altogether.

The future of Guantanamo Bay remains unclear as Obama also faces opposition to relocating prisoners to communities in Michigan.

Obama’s executive order, signed on Jan. 22, stipulated that the camp must be closed no later than one year after the order.

http://kansascity.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2009/09/14/daily29.html

former law student said...

I wonder what else he doesn't know, if he's seemingly incapable of anticipating the utterly fucking obvious?

from his swearing-in, Obama has taken elaborate pains to engage House and Senate Republicans. Time and again, Obama has incorporated their input into his legislative proposals, only to see them vote it down on a party line vote.

Now, back in the olden days, Democrats and Republicans worked together for the common good -- witness McCain-Finegold campaign finance reform. I suspect that that is what Obama is thinking of. But now, the GOPsters are digging in their heels just as hard as they can.

Maguro said...

FLS - Legislative holds are a courtesy and do not have to be honored by the majority leader. Reid could've just ignored Brownback's hold and brought his "blocked" nominees to the floor anyway. Then it would've been up to the Republicans to filibuster the nominations.

While the ``hold'' procedure is rooted in custom, not Senate rules, it can be a powerful tool. A single senator can tell his or her party leader that he does not want a piece of legislation or an appointment to come up for a vote.

The request for a hold is a signal that a filibuster could be mounted if the request is denied. The Senate majority leader, who controls the agenda, does not have to agree to honor the hold but might have to find 60 votes to move ahead on the issue
.

http://www.miamiherald.com/1218/story/1175740.html

If the Dems want to do something, there is no way the Republicans can really stop them. They can delay things a bit, but are ultimately powerless when it comes to legislation that is important to the Democrats.

Closing Gitmo was never important to Obama or the Dems and the fact that they never called Brownback's bluff just proves it.

Henry said...

Obama didn't realize what a giant bag of dicks the Republicans were, balking him at every turn.

Do dicks balk? How about "stiffing"?

Seriously, FLS, Obama can't even muster the juices to push aside the balking of the giant bag of dicks that is his own party. Maybe he should send a memo to the spouse of his Secretary of State to tell him all about "triangulating."

AJ Lynch said...

I am a bit surpiised Althouse is still falling for the idea that Obama is clever and exceptionally smart.

Perhaps she is, in fact, kidding herself in the hope that the clever, smart Obama will show up.

wv= dourfus = good name for the Obama when he does not get sufficient hosannas from the unwashed

Cedarford said...

garage - I doubted Obama would close it in a year, but I knew McPalin wouldn't close it ever.

You forget that McCain gave full cover to the Democrat Left, NYTimes, and ACLU by cheapshotting Bush for years about closing GITMO as a disgrace to America. And putting his 35-year old noble suffering POW schtick behind his mouth.

When Obama announced he was closing GITMO in a year, the 1st Senator to jump up and praise Obama's godlike wisdom was John McCain....followed I think by McCain's cronyboy Lindsay (the human weasel) Graham.

John Stodder said...

from his swearing-in, Obama has taken elaborate pains to engage House and Senate Republicans. Time and again, Obama has incorporated their input into his legislative proposals, only to see them vote it down on a party line vote.

This is what Obama and the congressional dems keep saying, but I haven't heard too many reeps validate the claim. In fact, the opposite. The "elaborate pains to engage" Republicans has been theater for the easily fooled, hardly a reality. The leftwing knock on Obama, that he's just too darn nice to the Republicans and now look what it's gotten him, is a matter of the left confusing politicians with corporate lobbyists. Obama has bent over backwards to accommodate corporate lobbyists, but they don't get to vote on bills directly, so the payoff is more indirect.

Dark Eden said...

I really think you're wrong on this one, Althouse (I think you prefer random commenter yutzes like me that don't know you calling you Althouse instead of Ann?).

Its pretty obvious to me he wanted to close it but never spent any time working out exactly what that entailed, how do to it, the consequences of doing so, etc. Now after months of trying to find a way, he's pretty well giving up.

Now he has no intention of closing it but he's just kicking the can down the road trying to buy time to think of something, anything to try to live up to his campaign promise.

Tom said...

from the original NYT article:

The White House has argued that closing Guantánamo would enhance national security by removing a symbol used by terrorist recruiters. It also said the closing would save taxpayers money because the Defense Department pays $150 million a year to operate the Guantánamo prison on the naval base there, while running the Illinois prison would cost $75 million.

The NYTimes is wrong in saying that closing Guantánamo would remove a symbol used by terrorist recruiters, it would not remove the symbol, only move it to the heartland of the United States.

Also, does anyone truly believe that a Federal prison staffed by a bunch of SEUI or other unionized prison guards could be run for half the price of a prison now staffed by midlevel noncommissioned officers in the Military? Seems like this is driven more as a payoff to 0's union buddies than to enhance National Security.

gk1 said...

One thing I wonder is whether obama has personally learned any lessons from this debacle? Will he be a bit more chastened in talking out of his ass on the campaign trail next time or will he move on as if nothing ever happened? I'd sure like to think he is capable of learning on the job, but see no signs of that yet.

Eric said...

One thing I wonder is whether obama has personally learned any lessons from this debacle?

People with that much pride have trouble learning from their mistakes. My guess is he'll chalk it all up to racism, since there's no other reason someone would want to oppose his obvious genius.

AJ Lynch said...

FLS:

The Dems wrote the Spendulus without an iota of Republican input. Where do you get off claiming "time and time again"...Obama has solicited opposition input?

Answer one other simple question - why doesn't the Obamacare bill allow competition across state lines?

Pogo said...

Time and time again, Obama has taken elaborate pains to engage Republicans, although primarily by having Rahm pretend to be Newt Gingrich and answer questions in a high squeaky voice.

And as yet, Rahm-as-Gingrich refuses to have a reasoned discussion, simply repeating the phrase Palin is Queen!!1! over and over again.

So I can see how BHO finds the GOP as merely obstructionist.

I don't understand, however, why Rahm-as-Gingrich wears a mu-mu, but my grasp of politics is poor.

former law student said...

Seems like this is driven more as a payoff to 0's union buddies than to enhance National Security.

I had the same concerns about cronyism back in 2005, as I'm sure you did too:

Miami Herald
June 18, 2005

Halliburton unit to build $30M jail at Guantánamo

The Pentagon announced that a Halliburton subsidiary was awarded the contract to build a state-of-the-art $30 million prison for 220 terrorism suspects at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. BY CAROL ROSENBERG crosenberg@herald.com

The Pentagon capped a week of intense debate on the future of its prison for terrorism suspects Friday with an announcement that Vice President Dick Cheney's old firm will build a new, $30 million 220-cell prison block at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown & Root received the work under a $500 million Navy contract from July 2004, according to a Defense Department contract announcement e-mailed to The Herald on Friday.

The $30 million will cover a two-story, air-conditioned building overlooking the Caribbean called Camp Six as well as a security fence. Work should be completed by July 2006 and will include day rooms, exercise areas and space for medical personnel to treat captives.



stimulus

To appeal to the GOP, the stimulus package included tax cuts as well as spending plans. After GOP objections, proposals to refurbish the National Mall, and to provide more family planning assistance, were taken out of the bill.

why doesn't the Obamacare bill allow competition across state lines?

Not to step on the toes of state governments, which at least up to now, have had the primary responsibility to regulate insurance providers.

But, the House bill proposes interstate compacts, while the Senate plan proposes allowing national plans that would meet most states' requirements.

former law student said...

Guantanamo was a symbol of the breakdown of the rule of law, because W's administration believed placing detainees there put them beyond the reach of US courts.

Jim O said...

One word: Kabuki

Pogo said...

"Guantanamo was a symbol of the breakdown of the rule of law, because W's administration believed placing detainees there put them beyond the reach of US courts."

But now that BHO is in power, we can "trust that the Commander-In-Chief is making the right decision", while changing nothing at all (except his words).

Sofa King said...

which at least up to now, have had the primary responsibility to regulate insurance providers.

They still would have the ability to regulate insurance providers in their own state. But I can't see how it's reasonable to forbid a person in one state from buying a policy from a provider in another state. That would be like Wisconsin saying you can't buy beer brewed in some other state. I don't even think it should be constitutional, because of the dormant commerce clause.

SMGalbraith said...

This should end - once and for all - the idea that a candidate who runs an excellent campaign will also be able to govern as effectively.

But it won't.

The differences - campaigning vs. governing - are obvious but we always fall for it.

Yeah, dope that I am, I did.

former law student said...

They still would have the ability to regulate insurance providers in their own state.

States regulate insurance providers to protect their citizens. Caveat emptor is not their motto.

holdfast said...

"Illinois is the only state that wants to hold them.is the only state that wants to hold them."

Well, with Ayers and Dohrn as upstanding Illinois citizens, they've become quite comfortable with having terrorists around. Just as Obama is comfortable being around terrorists.

I am not saying that he shares all of their more radical views, but, as with Rev. Wright, while he may not share all their views, he does not really find them offensive or out of the norm. Which just goes to show where his "norm" is set at.

Joe said...

States regulate insurance providers to protect their citizens. Caveat emptor is not their motto.

In part, but it's mainly simple protectionism and state politicians being bought off by the providers. The same thing applies to the car dealership laws in most states which are ultimately very anti-consumer.

Eric said...

Guantanamo was a symbol of the breakdown of the rule of law, because W's administration believed placing detainees there put them beyond the reach of US courts.

Whether or not you consider this a breakdown of the rule of law depends on how you classify these guys. In WW II German saboteurs apprehended on US soil were tried by military tribunals and executed. As far as I'm concerned these guys fall into the same category.

The real problem here is the only way these guys are going to be convicted in civilian courts is by relaxing the rules that protect all of us. Do you think any of them will get off because they didn't get a Miranda warning? I don't. Doesn't that set a precedent should you or I be arrested?

Alex said...

The levels of hypocrisy here are staggering.

On the right - pretending you suddenly care about Ay-rab rights

On the left - suddenly mute on Obama not keeping his promise

Alex said...

Jihadis should be accorded all the rights of an American citizen. God bless Uh-Merica!

Alex said...

Excuse me while I pinch a loaf.

former law student said...

Do you think any of them will get off because they didn't get a Miranda warning?

Do you think the only evidence we have against them is a confession we waterboarded out of them? Why do you think that's sufficient to hang a man?

former law student said...

Jihadis should be accorded all the rights of an American citizen.

So to prove someone is a jihadi, we first must assume that they're a jihadi?

Can you explain that to me in more detail?

Stephen said...

Ann Althouse: "He needs them to say no, and this gives them an excuse for opposing him."

I'm sure you're familiar with Occam's Razor... isn't this plan a little to complex?

Isn't it possible that there's simply been more pushback on this issue than he anticipated? I'm sure he expected some resistance, but maybe not from both sides of the isle, and probably on the grounds that these terrorists were too frightening to be caged in a maximum security federal prison in state X, Y or Z.

I thought we weren't supposed to be afraid.

Doesn't the NIMBY argument effectivly concede that the terrorists have in fact won this particular battle? Who would've thought that would be such a popular argument?

Carl Johnson said...

Obama the pragmatist is a very PC tag. Obama Lied is more accurate.

Joe said...

'm sure you're familiar with Occam's Razor... isn't this plan a little to complex?

Isn't it possible that there's simply been more pushback on this issue than he anticipated?


I go with a simpler theory than that. I believe Obama is a simple minded man who really believed, and still does to some extent, that the President really has more power than he really has; that simply expressing a desire for something really was sufficient.

(This believe runs deep on both sides of the political spectrum. The anti-Bush crowd were convinced that Bush had all sorts of power he never had. Likewise, the frothing at the mouth anti-Clinton crowd seemed to believe the same thing. The true power is in the hands of the Senate--a big reason for me that Senators should not be elected by popular vote; it's nice in theory, but that degree of power in popularly elected officials makes corruption so much easier.)

Penny said...

"The true power is in the hands of the Senate"

While accurate, Joe, we save this retort for when "our man" is in office. If he isn't, it's easier and feels so much better to blame the President.

dbp said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dbp said...

"Where force is necessary, we have a moral and strategic interest in binding ourselves to certain rules of conduct. And even as we confront a vicious adversary that abides by no rules, I believe that the United States of America must remain a standard bearer in the conduct of war. That is what makes us different from those whom we fight. That is a source of our strength. That is why I prohibited torture. That is why I ordered the prison at Guantanamo Bay closed. And that is why I have reaffirmed Americas commitment to abide by the Geneva Conventions".



King Canute ordered the tide to stay out as well and with as much effect, though his point was the opposite of president Obama's. For the president it doesn't matter that the prison remains just as open now as it did when he ordered it closed. Words, actions, what's the difference? Incidentally, I was listening to NPR commentary on the speech and they actually misspoke that Obama had "closed Guantánamo," I guess words and actions have no distinction with NPR either

Stephen said...

@Joe
"The true power is in the hands of the Senate"

I guess this is a little nitpicky, but since that's the case, I'm not sure what you would have Obama do other than "express a desire" in this situation. He made his case and the Senate said no. Simple as that, right? Is there another option? Maybe he should've made a stronger stand, but I'm not quite sure he could do anything more than that, or if that would've accomplished anything productive in this political climate.

@Penny
Well said.

the HSA king said...

It was typical Obama: Long-winded and short-sighted.

bagoh20 said...

"The differences - campaigning vs. governing - are obvious but we always fall for it.

Yeah, dope that I am, I did."


I've heard people admit this in person, but this is the first I've read anyone saying it online. Congrats on your rare honesty and a lesson learned.

If Obama fails at his objectives, especially health care, then I will be forced to thank those who voted for him, because he has been an incredibly valuable lesson to the American voter. But, he must fail, or the cost is too high for the seminar.

This, I think is the important political story: the way voters developed their opinion of him and then the way it changed so quickly. Unfortunately, the inevitable and temporary improvement in the economy will fool some people all over again. But that's the way it works: smart and dumb people give the President blame or credit for the economy, despite how silly that is.

bagoh20 said...

Obama might be pathological; the promises are often unnecessarily broken. For example, he promised to adopt a rescue dog and then did just the opposite. A small promise that could easily have been kept. This broken promise combined with his push to reduce tax deductions for charitable contributions really pissed off many people I know who previously supported him. Like I said, unnecessary. Pathological or maybe just dumb?

Eric said...

Do you think the only evidence we have against them is a confession we waterboarded out of them?

Oh, good point. It's a good thing soldiers and marines go to boot camp they learn all about documentation they need for chain of custody.

Exactly what evidence do you suppose the government will be able to get admitted in court?

Penny said...

Voters have this crazy relationship with their pols...

If you tell me the truth, there's no WAY I would vote for you.

And don't think you can get away without taking a stand on the topics at the forefront of my mind. I know a "lie of omission" when I don't hear it!

Most importantly, if I cast my vote for you, and you happen to win, that's only because I CHOSE to buy into your lies.

Got that, bub? Good. Now we BOTH understand who's calling the shots.

TJ said...

FLS -"So to prove someone is a jihadi, we first must assume that they're a jihadi?

Can you explain that to me in more detail?"

Were these mutts not plucked off a battlefield?

You make it sound like they were just arrested on a street corner as suspects in a robbery.

Most of these guys should have been eliminated at the point of contact.

It's not worth all the problems it creates to capture and keep 'em.

info said...

...and all the thumb suckers who voted for him look up and notice he is totally unequipped for the job...whatever...is there a Southpark rerun on???zzzzzzzzzzzz

Yos said...

haha ... Ann is not surprised ... hindsight is 20/20 otherwise, if you knew he would not close, why did you vote for him? i'm missing something here ...

Koblog said...

Contrary to the Boy President's assertions, this proves the Bush administration had thought the problem through and came up with an excellent solution: house the enemy combatants -- who were out of uniform, from multiple countries and killing both our guys and the locals -- off shore in a military camp until hostilities ended.

After months of dithering and grandstanding Obama's answer is: house 'em in Illinois. I.e.: nothing's changed except the location.

If he wants to "close Gitmo" why doesn't he just let the poor, misunderstood victims of American aggression go back to their homes?

Why continue to keep them incarcerated in an Illinois prison? So Dick Durban can claim he created jobs for prison guards?

By Obama's own specious argument, the detainees are still being held "illegally" and are an embarrassment to his "values."

Where are their trials and free lawyers?

TRO said...

"Where are all these enraged lefties you speak of."

Huddling around that Fire Dog Lake chick and her new right-wing friends.

narciso said...

It's a promise, I'm glad he's not keeping, but it was a stupid idea to even offer it. Releasing more prisoners like Arale this week, only makes the likelyhood of another atrocity waged on some distant shore
like Al Ajmi's last spring, which the Court refused to consider in Boumedienne. Bringing them to a prison within driving distance of a nuclear reactor is folly in the extreme.

rollingdivision said...

Never intended to close gitmo. All the talk is lip service for the obamabotic rubes who believe. Sadly, they will believe obama would close gitmo if he could, but everyone else is stopping him.

Mark said...

Garage Mahal -- I'll say it again, whatever his faults are [and there are many], they pale in comparison to what the only other alternative was.

I think that this indicates a real paradigm shift among the Obamaistas. No longer claiming anything positive about their once near divine lightworker. Now it is only the claim that the other guy is even worse.

I don't think that is going to work all that well among the largest group of voters which is the political independents. The hubris, mendacity and incompetence of the current administration is providing a valuable, if painful, lesson to those generations who are too young to remember Jimmy Carter.

Marvel Goose said...

You give him way too much credit. What we are witnessing is the education of President Obama.

Big Mike said...

I think that this indicates a real paradigm shift among the Obamaistas. No longer claiming anything positive about their once near divine lightworker. Now it is only the claim that the other guy is even worse.

Yup. The Professor herself passed through that phase several months ago (may still be in that phase for all I know).

Big Mike said...

The differences - campaigning vs. governing - are obvious but we always fall for it.

Yeah, dope that I am, I did
.

And may yet again. I voted for the other guy because ever since Carter I've been leery of people campaigning for office -- and the Presidency especially -- whose speaches suggest that of course it will be easy to do the opposite of whatever the incumbent is doing. No it won't. I also consider who the candidate has surrounded himself or herself with, and here I thought all three candidates (Hillary no less than Obama or McCain) came up way short. Finally I consider the person's integrity, because many times in the four years of the term of office that integrity will be tested repeatedly. And here there was no contest between McCain and a Chicago Democrat.

nathan kaiser said...

This sounds like a pork barrel project for Illinois...

george said...

The next time Obama thinks through the repercussions of any of his decisions will be the first. He is simply congenitally incapable of thinking that deeply about ANYTHING. Whether it is naming the withdrawal date when going to war or spending every dime any of us will ever make in our lifetimes before mewling about how we are bankrupt, there is not a single issue to which anyone can point where Obama has planned ahead. He is ready to "bankrupt" the coal industry, let the EPA regulate the constituent gases of air and introduce Cap and Trade without having even the slightest conception what we will do for energy once he is done.

He lives only in the moment, which is why all of his promises have expiration dates. Mental lassitude is his defining characteristic. It is just too darn hard to be consistent or to think ahead... and besides... people won't like him if he has to take sides on an issue and stick to it so he takes the lazy way out just like he has done his entire life.

Everyone is casting about for explanations for his inexplicable behavior in a desperate attempt to avoid the obvious... the guy is stupid. He doesn't realize how dangerous it is to step on a rake until the handle hits him in the face like it did with Guantanimo or any other issue he has attempted to dabble in. He is Chauncey Gardner in every sense that matters, right down to the media and pundits trying to ascribe deeper meaning to his insipid prattle and policies.

The average guy in the street who has been paying attention has had Obama's measure for a good while now. It just takes longer for the pundits to catch up. Once they inevitably are forced to quit covering for him the game is over. All that remains to be seen is how deep in debt we will be before the herd animals that make up academia and the media realize the obvious. Then the stampede can begin in earnest.

James said...

Sorry, but I don't think O is that clever.

He said he'd close it in order to become President.

Now that he's President he'll close it ... unless he encounters strong objections.

Rick C said...

And I'm still waiting for the recognition of and outrage from the left over this event from last week:

"After hearing passionate arguments from the Obama Administration, the Supreme Court acquiesced to the president's fervent request and, in a one-line ruling, let stand a lower court decision that declared torture an ordinary, expected consequence of military detention, while introducing a shocking new precedent for all future courts to follow: anyone who is arbitrarily declared a "suspected enemy combatant" by the president or his designated minions is no longer a "person." They will simply cease to exist as a legal entity. They will have no inherent rights, no human rights, no legal standing whatsoever -- save whatever modicum of process the government arbitrarily deigns to grant them from time to time, with its ever-shifting tribunals and show trials."

http://chris-floyd.com/component/content/article/1-latest-news/1887-dred-scott-redux-obama-and-the-supremes-stand-up-for-slavery.html

Henry said...

Penny wrote: "Voters have this crazy relationship with their pols... If you tell me the truth, there's no WAY I would vote for you."

I believe it was Tory F.E.Smith of whom it was said that voters appreciated his "you be damnedness." I wish we had some politicians like that.

Trying to verify that fact (unsuccessfully), I came across this quote by Max Aitken, Lord Beaverbrook, about David Lloyd George:

He did not seem to care which way he travelled, as long as he was in the driver's seat.

Seemed appropriate.

Henry said...

BTW, that Beaverbrook quote came from this fabulous Political Insults Collection.

Henry said...

Here's another:

He occasionally stumbled over the truth, but hastily picked himself up and hurried on as if nothing had happened.
Winston Churchill on Stanley Baldwin (1867-1947)

vbspurs said...

Palladian quoted:

"Oh, he doesn't really mean that, he's just saying it because America is a bigoted country and he needs to say it to get elected. Afterwards, he'll do what's right and what he believes".

That encapsulates the encounter I had, with a pushy girl in the early voting queue, just before the Presidential election in 2008. Maybe she was a loud type anyway, but it seems to me she had taken Obama's directive to heart, of "get in their faces and argue" about issues.

So she goes up to this woman in front of my mother and myself, and asks how she will vote on the proposition to allow gay marriage to go through. She says she's against gay marriage. The girl goes ballistic, yelling at all of us.

So I step up and say, "How do you feel about the BETRAYAL of Barack Obama towards the gay community, with his anti-gay marriage stance?".

"Oh, he's just saying that to get elected!"

"So what you're saying is, he's taking a hypocritical stance in order to reach power? I thought you were the Party of ideals?"

She literally shut up after that. Thank God.

Cheers,
Victoria

Gullyborg said...

here is the thing:

Obama cares about looking good and having a legacy as not only the first black president but as the greatest savior.

Obama can push through health care without thinking it through, because the important thing to history will be passing something, anything, and then letting future generations make it actually work. call this the FDR plan. it worked great with social security.

But Obama also realizes that while losing the hard core anti war left is bad, it pales in comparison to how bad it will be for his record if there is another 9/11 type attack or if the wars in Afghanistand or Iraq really do become Vietnam. Another 9/11 or 10,000 more dead in combat, and it wouldn't matter if Obama cured the blind and fed the hungry on 3 fish sticks - he would be remembered as the man who failed to protect America first and foremost.

So I believe Obama really does want to keep us safe and win our wars. But will he do it competently? dunno. he sure seemed blase about an Afghanistan decision and he sure is hemming and hawing about Gitmo. It's like he is calculating the absolute least effort he needs to make to succeed - which may make economic sense, but also runs the risk of failure. I'd rather err on the side of doing too much than too little when it comes to protecting America.

former law student said...

It's a good thing soldiers and marines go to boot camp

Combatants captured on battlefields fit the prisoner of war paradigm and should be treated as such. That leaves a lot of detainees who were never captured on any battlefield or by any soldiers or marines.

Michael McNeil said...

I think you prefer random commenter yutzes like me that don't know you calling you Althouse instead of Ann?

Althouse has already stated that she greatly prefers being called Althouse rather than “Ann” — by anybody, whether they “know” her or not. Hmm, I wonder what Meade calls her…?

From Inwood said...

It's not a good thing that FLS went to law school without finishing or learning much about what he pontificates on in this blog.

But then, peer review on this blog seems to be better than review by a "consensus" of law profs who know not of the matters legal they express certainty about.

Laika's Last Woof said...

Consider the Nobel Peace Prize a "reset button". Gitmo wasn't an issue for the Nobel committee. Why should it be for anyone else?

Daniel in Brookline said...

Combatants captured on battlefields fit the prisoner of war paradigm and should be treated as such.

Nonsense. The Geneva Conventions are explicit on who should, and should not, be eligible for prisoner-of-war status. Combatants who wear no uniform are not eligible.

This might sound to some like a silly distinction, but it's not. The soldier wears a uniform for a reason -- so that the enemy will target him, and not the civilian standing nearby. This is why, when soldiers out of uniform are caught behind enemy lines in wartime, they are generally executed as spies.

A combatant who doesn't wear a uniform is one who wants to hide behind civilians. This is despicable in the extreme, and the authors of the Geneva Conventions knew what they were doing when they excluded such animals.

respectfully,
Daniel in Brookline

luagha said...

1. The Supreme Court has made it clear that once someone is on our soil, legally or illegally or brought here by force, they will have certain constitutional rights. Which ones and to what extent are unknown and will take several years to go up and down the court system. I assure you that nothing will happen quickly. We're still hashing out the status of prisoners from 1999 and 2001. They only remain prisoners of war if they are not inside the country. If those Gitmo prisoners ever get to Illinois, all bets are off.

2. The Gitmo prisoners do not and can not have prisoner of war status for any number of reasons. One big one is that there is no one we can negotiate with for a cessation of hostilities. They do not have superior officers or a controlling organization that will communicate with us, nor do they willingly give that information.

3. Obama has never in his life successfully accomplished anything except winning popularity contests. All of his known activities as a manager have been failures. His management style is his community organizing style: bring the problem to other people's attention and be noisy about it so they have to solve it.

This is a failure as a management style. As many people have pointed out, he is now the person who does the solving. Directing attention to the problem is nice, but he has to provide the workable solution and marshall it through, which he doesn't.

Brian said...

pretty simple to me. Put the prison where the people are complaining about Gitmo, i.e. Marin County.

Joe said...

I guess this is a little nitpicky, but since that's the case, I'm not sure what you would have Obama do other than "express a desire" in this situation.

I wasn't saying what Obama should do; I was pointing out that he clearly believes the power of the presidency is more than it is; that simply expressing a desire is sufficient to wield power.

That said, there is a lot Obama could have done. It's called negotiation. It's what politicians do and which Obama is incapable of doing, as proven by his non-record as a politician. (Shutting down the missile defense program being a perfect example of Obama's incompetence as a politician. Even if the program was a joke--which I actually think it was--you don't just dismantle it based on promises; you get something concrete for it and make sure everyone knows what you got.)

(George W Bush was also terrible at politics. He all too often gave things away instead of dealing them away.)

In short, I believe Obama did intend to close Guantanamo, but that he also believed that all he had to do was say "Ye Be Closed" and it would be closed.

Jim C. said...

Blogger Julius Ray Hoffman said, if we are going to be consistent then we need to allow Obama to have complete flexibility with them too.

Oh, well done. Inconsistency = consistency. No sophist could have done better.

There's one problem with your point, though. Obama said closing Gitmo was a matter of "fierce moral urgency". Bush never said anything like that about housing terrorists/POWs in the US.

In any case, "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall." --Emerson, Self-Reliance

Of course, with Obama, he IS the shadow on the wall.

As Insty posted in November, "Weaselly politicians 1, fierce moral urgency of change 0. Okay, actually by now that score’s working out to about 700-0, but . . . ."

Big Mike said...

@Brian, I like the way you think! In fact, maybe we could reopen Alcatraz.

Eric said...

Hmm, I wonder what Meade calls her…?

Boss?

Jason said...

Combatants captured on battlefields fit the prisoner of war paradigm and should be treated as such.

Good god, FLS... don't you ever get tired of painting yourself into stupid corners like this?

Thank GOD you aren't a lawyer!

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