Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Interesting Contrasts and Currents

Saddam Hussein, “The Butcher of Baghdad,” was executed just before dawn 12/30/06 local, at 10 pm EST (that is 12/29 EST). We can depose a foreign tyrant but cannot keep him from being executed. So sadly so much power is so wasted. I have no doubt that no-one ever deserved to be executed more. However, to my mind, life without parole is the much greater deterrent, is the greater punishment, and teaches the greater moral lesson.

A New Jersey commission has voted 12-1 to abolish the death penalty in that state. Just as I thought, Prof. Berman has this excellent "first cut" take. Karl Keys at Capital Defense Weekly has still more on that, a little piqued, or at least disputatious, re Doug's use of the term "sophomoric" or something like that, (college student quality of the report--maybe the students are REALLY VERY HIGH QUALITY -- even though he is "underwhelmed") here. And Scott Henson does his usual excellent job here reviewing Texas developments in 2006.

Now, NPR is reporting that the executioners taunted on the gallows?! Apparently, despite the searching by American troops to prevent this, one of the five executioners already present (according to the report) must have taped this on a cellphone.

President Ford's state funeral began with much fanfare. America buries a great President. Ford taped an interview that was only to be released upon his death in which he described how big a mistake he thought it was to precipitously invade Iraq (paraphrasing): we must not use force unnecessarily, even to further spread democracy, unless our own national interests are clearly hinging on the immediate use of that force. Tuesday, January 2 was designated a national day of mourning.

Whoops! Did he really mean to inhale at that particular point in time? Nah. Must'a been just an accident, breathing in like that. (Thanks Jeralyn). For more on this SCOOP see here, Talk Left.

And the PD Awards are almost over now. I really like how Greg has that "feedroll" (with me in there heading up the "Z"s, and Arbitrary doing the "A"s). Only four blogs linking to me (so far) but all quality, I'm telling you.

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