25 November 2003

$9 million of federal funds designated for the reconstruction of Iraq were used to suppress globalization protests

United Steelworkers of America call for congressional investigation into "police state assaults" in Miami Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) meetings last week:
"Last week, the fundamental rights of thousands of Americans Ö were blatantly violated, sometimes violently, by the Miami police, who systematically repressed our Constitutional right to free assembly with massive force, riot gear and armaments," said Leo W. Gerard, USWA international president, in a letter to Congressional leaders.

"It is condemnable enough that a massive police state was created to prevent American citizens from directly petitioning FTAA negotiators for redress of their grievances," Gerard said in the letter.

SCOTUS and International Law

Clipped from an article named The Supreme Court's Disturbing New Internationalism, or OUR EUROCENTRIC JUSTICES or Courting International Law as it was originally titled.
Lost in the hoopla over the Supreme Court's decisions last term on affirmative action and gay rights is the development of a disturbing new legal trend, one hinted at by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor in a speech last week.

Increasingly, it seems, the court is relying on international law and opinion as the basis for domestic legal decisions. For an institution that puts so much stock in precedence, this move is, well, unprecedented. Worse, it spells potential trouble down the road.

In several of its highest-profile cases, the court looked for guidance from, among other bodies, the European Council for Human Rights and the U.N. For the first time, these authorities are being granted as much or more weight as U.S. law, or even the Constitution, in the court's decisions. This is a serious abuse of the Supreme Court's judicial review responsibility, as well as its role as the ultimate arbiter in our legal system.

Is a disturbing new legal trend fraught with peril indeed evident?