regrets

I regret not speaking loudly and publicly about a lot of things, but just at the moment, it is Obama’s decision to use force in Libya — and Syria — without Congressional authorization.

That leaves me in the awkward position of opposing escalation in Syria by President Trump, but not being able to cite at least my own precedent of opposition to armed conflict in general, in addition to favoring the very minimal bar of congressional approval.

Our trusty senior California Senator seems very likely to sign on to this misadventure; having issues a “we must act” statement a couple days ago. Perhaps we could consider a non-violent course of action that doesn’t inflame tensions in the Middle East? Suggestions:

  • accept refugees; not a few and not reluctantly
  • create/fund areas of refuge in neighboring countries

Pelosi has apparently called this response “proportional”, though no link to her statement is forthcoming at the moment.

I hold out hope for Kamala Harris, but nothing has been posted to her Senate site yet.

Congress: I beg of you to force the President to get your approval before this mad war.

My representatives: You know your constituencies oppose this action. Represent us!

feinstein and pompeo

California Senator Dianne Feinstein today acquiesced to Trump nominee Mike Pompeo as CIA Director.

Her announcement refers to a conversation in which he pledged to “following the law regarding torture,” which may be the least reassuring statement possible, as the law is moveable.

In his Senate testimony, he promised not to re-start the torture programs from the Bush administration:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), ranking Democrat on the committee, pressed Pompeo to pledge he would not do so even if ordered by Trump.

“Absolutely not,” he promised, adding, “I can’t imagine I would be asked to do that by the president-elect.”

Had he left it “absolutely not”, there would be no objection. Adding what he did, in direct contradiction to Trump’s oft-repeated campaign promise (November 2015March 2016June 2016), puts him in the same truth-free zone as the rest of Trump’s cabinet.

As an added bonus, the public has no way to ever know if the promise has been kept.