Okay, Clash purists generally don’t consider the Mick-Jones-less Clash of the mid-1980s to be the genuine article, but this was too good to resist: A live version of “Dictator,” the studio version of which is the opening track on Cut The Crap (1985).
In honor of Rand Paul, natch.
So, I took some heat in the comments section of yesterday’s post on drones (and in the comments on my previous post on civil liberties), the upshot of which is that I, like Pres. Obama, favor unchecked executive power, summary executions, and, of course, dead babies in the Middle East and Central Asia. Because I don’t see eye-to-eye with Glenn Greenwald, or something.
Oddly enough, I do see eye-to-eye with Glenn Greenwald on quite a few things. But after twenty-five years in the law biz, I tend to think for myself; which means sometimes I disagree with him. And with other liberals. And – gasp! – with Pres. Obama, too. That’s the funny thing about us liberals: We’re good at a lot of things, but walking in lock-step with one another isn’t one of them.
Unfortunately, knee-jerk anti-Obama reactions from left, right, and center mean I often find myself defending the President, or, as is more often the case, asking his critics to look more closely at the issues. Take the Rand Paul dust-up, for example. If you’re getting your constitutional analysis from a Kentucky eye doctor who once questioned whether the Civil Rights Act was a good idea, you may want to think about finding a new constitutional law expert. Don’t take my word for it. Earlier today, David Corn at Mother Jones made an argument very similar to my own. Noting that there are legitimate concerns about the use of drones and the conduct of the “war on terror” itself, he went on to say:
But decrying the administration for possible drone assaults against non-combatant American citizens within the United States is a phony issue, a modern-day equivalent of black-helicopter-phobia. In an unsurprising, it's-really-about-politics move, Paul distracted from the real concerns, and the quickly-written email pushing his Stand With Rand Money Bomb shows this senator as a crass operator untethered from the truth who's eager to exploit his own grandstanding.
I guess that makes David Corn a dictator-lover like me … even though he and I both disagree with the President over the “war on terror.”
I would add one additional observation: What’s really amazing to me is that nobody seems to have noticed Rand Paul’s thinly veiled, coded message to the neo-confederate wing of the Republican Party. Do you really think he cares about the use of drones in a 9/11-type situation? Of course not. The image he wanted to conjure was Fort Sumter, not the World Trade Center.
But that’s not why you called.
You came here for your Friday Clash, and your Friday Clash you shall get. Times two.
Here’s the studio version of “Dictator,” just so we cover all the bases:
Now I am the voice
Howling from your radio
My armour plated Cadillac
You’ll hear what I say goes
What I say go …
That’s right. What I say goes. And I say: Turn. It. Up.
[Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles]