Before he took office, President Obama wrote a book called The Audacity of Hope. He might well have named it the audacity of Barack Obama. Take a look at this clip from All In with Chris Hayes about the search for Edward Snowden. Pay particular attention to what the president says around the 5:00 mark, that we are seeking the return of Snowden to face trial “to make sure that the rule of law is observed.”
We may need to place his picture next to the world chutzpah in the dictionary. Seriously, Obama is going to invoke the rule of law, something he has actively undermined every single day since taking office? If he gave a damn about the rule of law, he would have prosecuted Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and other Bush administration officials for their ordering of torture, something that is absolutely required by the UN Convention Against Torture that we are not only a signatory to, but which we helped push through the UN under President Reagan. That treaty, which the constitution explicitly includes as part of the “supreme law of the land” requires prosecution of anyone who orders or participates in torture and takes that requirement so seriously that it provides for universal jurisdiction, so that if one country fails to prosecute their own citizens for it, any country may bring charges against them (and several countries have done so against Bush). It also makes clear that no exigency whatsoever may be used to justify the use of torture.
If he gave a damn about the rule of law, he would not have spent the last five years making sure that no one who has been the target of illegal surveillance could ever have their day in court to challenge the constitutionality of the government’s actions justified as part of the war on terror. If he gave a damn about the rule of law, he would not have signed off on and would not continue to defend the NSA’s many data mining projects which blatantly violate the 4th Amendment.
The rule of law? Under Obama, it’s been disembowled, soaked in acid, run through a shredder, set on fire and shot into outer space (as it was under Bush, of course, but that hardly excuses Obama).