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Tuesday, January 10, 2006

"The 9/11 Constitution"

Law Professor Cass Sunstein offers this very interesting review of former Justice Department official and current law professor John Yoo's book, The Powers of War and Peace: The Constitution and Foreign Affairs After 9/11. Professor Yoo has been credited for arguing, while in the Justice Department, that the government has the legal authority to engage in domestic spying without judicial approval.

Professor Sunstein begins his article by noting:
After the attacks of September 11, constitutional law was bound to change. Serious threats to national security have always had large effects on the nation's understanding of its founding document. A major reason is that the president's lawyers tend to see the Constitution as a highly flexible instrument, permitting their client to do what he thinks must be done. Francis Biddle, attorney general under Franklin Delano Roosevelt, said that "the Constitution has never greatly bothered any wartime president." Courts often ratify the decisions of wartime presidents. Roosevelt himself placed Japanese-Americans on the West Coast in internment camps, and the Supreme Court upheld his decision.

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1 Comments:
Blogger Steve [At 4:47 PM]:

Fascinating. Here's another side of war and peace in America.

Have you guys read Younghee Cha's book: After 9/11: A Korean Girl's Sexual Journey? If you haven't, prepare for a wild ride that will leave you with hope about our international situation. After 9/11, a Korean girl faces visa and financial problems while living in L.A. Along the way, she encounters her guilty feelings about her first love.. and embarks upon an erotic odyssey...by turns blissful, dangerous and bizarre. The first thing that struck me about her book is it's not only a journey into sexuality but into being human. It's a search for world peace and toward our longevity as a people. I almost cried when I took in the insights it had into the Iraq war and its relation to undocumented residency - especially the DREAM act. A brilliant merging of sexuality with politics happens when she nakedly performs the crane dance, the dance for world peace and longevity, for a powerful but sexually dysfunctional client.

I laughed out loud reading this and then sat silently mesmerized while absorbing its political and erotic content. Having so throroughly enjoyed it, I believe it's good to share this feeling with others, including those of us here who care so much about America's inclusiveness and ability to transcend a devastating but ultimately petty attack, about our wholeness as people - a variety of ethnicities with a myriad ways of experiencing life. This book concerns our future as a nation that represents all people. Check out more about it at its website - www.youngheecha.com.

 
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