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Court gives detainees habeas rights

In a stunning blow to the Bush Administration in its war-on-terrorism policies, the Supreme Court ruled Thursday that foreign nationals held at Guantanamo Bay have a right to pursue habeas challenges to their detention. The Court, dividing 5-4, ruled that Congress had not validly taken away habeas rights. If Congress wishes to suspend habeas, it must do so only as the Constitution allows a€" when the country faces rebellion or invasion.


The Court stressed that it was not ruling that the detainees are entitled to be released a€" that is, entitled to have writs issued to end their confinement. That issue, it said, is left to the District Court judges who will be hearing the challenges. The Court also said that a€oewe do not address whether the President has authority to detaina€A individuals during the war on terrorism, and hold them at the U.S. Naval base in Cuba; that, too, it said, is to be considered first by the District judges.

The Court also declared that detainees do not have to go through the special civilian court review process that Congress created in 2005, since that is not an adequate substitute for habeas rights. The Court refused to interpret the Detainee Treatment Act a€" as the Bush Administration had suggested a€" to include enough legal protection to make it an adequate replacement for habeas. Congress, it concluded, unconstitutionally suspended the writ in enacting that Act.

The Court also found serious defects in the process that the Pentagon set up in 2004 to decide which prisoners are to be designated as a€oeenemy combatantsa€A a€" the status that leads to their continued confinement. This process is the system of so-called Combatant Status Review Tribunals. The procedures used by CSRTs, the Court said, a€oefall well short of the procedures and adversarial mechanisms that would eliminate the need for habeas corpus review.a€A

Justice Anthony M. Kennedya€™s opinion for the majority in Boumediene v. Bush (06-1195) and Al Odah v. U.S. (06-1196) was an almost rhapsodic review of the history of the Great Writ. The Suspension Clause, he wrote, a€oeprotects the rights of the detained by a means consistent with the essential design of the Constitution. It ensures that, except during periods of formal suspension, the Judiciary will have a time-tested device, the writ, to maintain the a€delicate balance of governancea€™ that is itself the surest safeguard of liberty.a€A Those who wrote the Constitution, he added, a€oedeemed the writ to be an essential mechanism in the separation-of-powers scheme.a€A

Even though the two political branches a€" the President and Congress a€" had agreed to take away the detaineesa€™ habeas rights, Kennedy said those branches do not have a€oethe power to switch the Constitution on or off at will.a€A

In a second ruling on habeas, the Court decided unanimously that U.S. citizens held by U.S. military forces in Iraq have a right to file habeas cases, because it does extend to them, but it went on to rule that federal judges do not have any authority to bar the transfer of those individuals to Iraqi authorites to face prosecution or punishment for crimes committed in that country in violation of Iraqi laws.

via scotusblog


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Unlike Others, U.S. Defends Freedom to Offend in Speech

VANCOUVER, British Columbia a€" A couple of years ago, a Canadian magazine published an article arguing that the rise of Islam threatened Western values. The articlea€™s tone was mocking and biting, but it said nothing that conservative magazines and blogs in the United States do not say every day without fear of legal reprisal.

Things are different here. The magazine is on trial.


Two members of the Canadian Islamic Congress say the magazine, Macleana€™s, Canadaa€™s leading newsweekly, violated a provincial hate speech law by stirring up hatred against Muslims. They say the magazine should be forbidden from saying similar things, forced to publish a rebuttal and made to compensate Muslims for injuring their a€oedignity, feelings and self-respect.a€A

The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, which held five days of hearings on those questions here last week, will soon rule on whether Macleana€™s violated the law. As spectators lined up for the afternoon session last week, an argument broke out.

a€oeIta€™s hate speech!a€A yelled one man.

a€oeIta€™s free speech!a€A yelled another.

In the United States, that debate has been settled. Under the First Amendment, newspapers and magazines can say what they like about minorities and religions a€" even false, provocative or hateful things a€" without legal consequence.

The Macleana€™s article, a€oeThe Future Belongs to Islam,a€A was an excerpt from a book by Mark Steyn called a€oeAmerica Alonea€A (Regnery, 2006). The title was fitting: The United States, in its treatment of hate speech, as in so many other areas of the law, takes a distinctive legal path.

a€oeIn much of the developed world, one uses racial epithets at onea€™s legal peril, one displays Nazi regalia and the other trappings of ethnic hatred at significant legal risk, and one urges discrimination against religious minorities under threat of fine or imprisonment,a€A Frederick Schauer, a professor at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, wrote in a recent essay called a€oeThe Exceptional First Amendment.a€A

a€oeBut in the United States,a€A Professor Schauer continued, a€oeall such speech remains constitutionally protected.a€A

Canada, England, France, Germany, the Netherlands, South Africa, Australia and India all have laws or have signed international conventions banning hate speech. Israel and France forbid the sale of Nazi items like swastikas and flags. It is a crime to deny the Holocaust in Canada, Germany and France.

Earlier this month, the actress Brigitte Bardot, an animal rights activist, was fined $23,000 in France for provoking racial hatred by criticizing a Muslim ceremony involving the slaughter of sheep.

By contrast, American courts would not stop a planned march by the American Nazi Party in Skokie, Ill., in 1977, though a march would have been deeply distressing to the many Holocaust survivors there.

Six years later, a state court judge in New York dismissed a libel case brought by several Puerto Rican groups against a business executive who had called food stamps a€oebasically a Puerto Rican program.a€A The First Amendment, Justice Eve M. Preminger wrote, does not allow even false statements about racial or ethnic groups to be suppressed or punished just because they may increase a€oethe general level of prejudice.a€A

Some prominent legal scholars say the United States should reconsider its position on hate speech.

a€oeIt is not clear to me that the Europeans are mistaken,a€A Jeremy Waldron, a legal philosopher, wrote in The New York Review of Books last month, a€oewhen they say that a liberal democracy must take affirmative responsibility for protecting the atmosphere of mutual respect against certain forms of vicious attack.a€A

Professor Waldron was reviewing a€oeFreedom for the Thought That We Hate: A Biography of the First Amendmenta€A by Anthony Lewis, the former New York Times columnist. Mr. Lewis has been critical of efforts to use the law to limit hate speech.

But even Mr. Lewis, a liberal, wrote in his book that he was inclined to relax some of the most stringent First Amendment protections a€oein an age when words have inspired acts of mass murder and terrorism.a€A In particular, he called for a re-examination of the Supreme Courta€™s insistence that there is only one justification for making incitement a criminal offense: the likelihood of imminent violence.

The imminence requirement sets a high hurdle. Mere advocacy of violence, terrorism or the overthrow of the government is not enough; the words must be meant to and be likely to produce violence or lawlessness right away. A fiery speech urging an angry mob to immediately assault a black man in its midst probably qualifies as incitement under the First Amendment. A magazine article a€" or any publication a€" intended to stir up racial hatred surely does not.

Mr. Lewis wrote that there was a€oegenuinely dangerousa€A speech that did not meet the imminence requirement.

the remainder of this article can be found at nytimes

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Slick Rick The Ruler Pardoned by New Gov


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Posted: June 2nd, 2008
at 7:03am by Koookiecrumbles

Categories: hood status,myninjaplease,music,celebrity,too good to be true,home,mnp is for the children,fo' real?,9th dan

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Quote of the day : Diego Maradona


Jesus Saves - but Maradona scores on the rebound.

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Olympic Choreography


The visually underwhelming London Olympics stadium, designed by HOK Sport, might actually be broken down into its constituent parts once the 2012 Summer Games are over and shipped off to Chicago a€" where it will be partially reassembled.

Perhaps this act will open the door to a new choreography of reused, plug-and-play architectural structures, with fragments of existing buildings being FedEx’d around the world to fit one into the other in a delirium of improvised building space. Cathedral pods and office modules meet in a haze of stadium seating and hobby lobbies on the outskirts of San Francisco. New rooms are trucked in from somewhere east of Reno.

You buy part of the London stadium for yourself and build a treehouse with it.

Of course, does this also imply that there could be architectural stowaways? Crossing borders and exploring the complex fringes of territorial sovereignty by hiding out within pieces of mobile architecture a€" riding conference halls and classrooms throughout the circuits of global commerce… before stepping out, like a scene from an Alfred Hitchcock film, onto the tropical streets of Manila.

You then jump into a nearby taxi and disappear.

The taxi is then shipped to New York.

Where surrealism meets the postal service. Or perhaps surrealism is a kind of postal service, with objects popping up where they are not supposed to be.


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Posted: May 28th, 2008
at 12:53am by Koookiecrumbles

Categories: myninjaplease,life,too good to be true,web,home,games,business,film,politricks,weaponry,architecture,design,fo' real?

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Bioluminescent Creatures and Dinoflagellate Locales


Not long before Curious Expeditions came to Eastern Europe to search for the wondrous and macabre, we had the opportunity to travel through Puerto Rico. It was a magical trip filled with rain forests, the gigantic SETI radio telescope in Aricebo, and the landing port of Ponce de Leon. However, one experience shines above the rest. On the island of Vieques, in a dense mangrove swamp is one of the most magical places we has ever had the pleasure to visit.

We had come on a moonless night and the stars shone down as perfect pinpoints. It was a cool summer night when we slipped into the warm, dark water. (Actually I less a€oeslippeda€A and more fell face first out of my kayak into the salty bay.) As we glided into the water, our faces were suddenly bathed in an eerie, otherworldly green. Brilliant plumes of translucent green swirled all about our limbs making us glow. The light wasna€™t coming from above, but was radiating from all around us. From the water itself.

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Are we sending the right message to ET?


It’s midnight on a far-flung planet and some alien astronomers happen to have their radio telescopes pointed right at Earth, when they get a tiny spike in RF power - it’s a message! Quick, decode it. What’s it say?

It’s . . . it’s . . . an advertisement for Doritos. Beamed across the cosmos. On purpose.

No joke. Doritos’ latest effort will see the UK public trying to come up with the winning 30-second spot that evidently will represent humanity’s first interstellar ad campaign. With that universal fame, the winner will collect the tidy sum of 20,000 GBP.

In June, the ad will be broadcast using the high frequency radar telescope at the EISCAT Space Centre in Svalbard, Norway. It’ll be aimed toward the "habitable zone" around one of the stars in the Ursa Major constellation, one of our best candidates for an untapped populace of snack food consumers.

But it’s 42 light years away. By the time they get the message and pop over, just think of all the Doritos flavours there will be.

OK, OK, so everybody loves a good PR stunt. Admittedly it could be more enticing than the heady stuff we’ve been pumping out until now, or nothing at all. And I’m as compulsive a Doritos eater as the next guy (or the next seagull).

But we are, conceivably, talking about the first impression we are going to make on an alien population. Couldn’t we advertise something more representative of our cultures, our hopes and dreams and interplanetary worthiness? Like Spam? Corn dogs? Help me out here. After June the marketing floodgates shall be open forever - what do you think we should be pitching to the universe at large?

Jason Palmer, New Scientist intern
(Mashup by danp)


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Masaaki Hatsumi - Soke : Rule 7


The tradition of the Bujinkan recognizes nature and the universality of all human life, and is aware of that which flows naturally between the two parts:

a€¢"The secret principle of Taijutsu is to know the foundations of peace.

a€¢To study is the path to the immovable heart (fudoshin)."

bujinkan via ninjadynasty

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Walk the Earf : No Chaser Just Sprite





For a couple of months (since I became aware of this event), I wondered what exactly the event would be like. All I had to go by was that darn poster and it didn’t reveal much. I arrived at Wicker Park around 6:53 or so and began the beginning of the end of the night. Where was I supposed to stand or even team up with? What were the teams?

Having not to have wanted to immerse myself in SF0 just quite yet, my first real task at hand was now on the table.
A welcoming greeting was given by the curator as the fury of speculation and clusters became more evident….then the rules were given out. The cameras blazed and the fountain sparkled. I wondered how in the world the map and blue arm band that were given to me were going to shield me from those that seemed to know more than me. I lay cautious, muddled a few questions and then read the rules. And then stared at the map for a long while. The horn lit and I was out like cake from the oven and frankly ran where everyone else started to run- southeast- hopped the fence and then looked for a team…..

I assimilated immediately and dropped out immediately.. Luckily before reaching the first checkpoint at baker’s square I flocked in formation..and then had a tasty vegan cup cake (that had been previously promised for those that ended up at the finish line (chased or not)). Thankfully I had cribbaged amongst two Art Institute students and somehow we evaded those damn chasers. In between the first and the second checkpoint was where our wits were fully checked. We had been cornered in an alley with water cauldrons blocking the only secret exit. I climbed them anyway to only see that the secret exit was just a secret and then camped out under a semi for a couple of minutes. Then we booked flight around the corner and glanced at the chasers from then on out.


We made it to the runway behind the rerouted sixth checkpoint about 4 hours after the game had begun with our completed manifests and rejoiced with more cupcakes and conversation of settlement, along with the other 44 manifesters.

What was buffalo hunting strategy? What should be thought about magnetic rings? How do you do a rested back flip?

There could only be a Runner Trophy and one Chaser Trophy. They were awarded and those of merit, courage and valor nested in admiration.

Thanks to Dax and the SF0 crew for really relaying a great Chicago experience that I will remember for a lifetime. Below you will find some wallpapers that tell stories of that night.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted: April 22nd, 2008
at 10:01am by Koookiecrumbles

Categories: myninjaplease,life,too good to be true,home,games,photo,design,fo' real?,real life news,walk the earf,diy

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