Jul 032002

The always rational Steven Den Beste explains why it maybe isn’t such a hot idea for the U.S. to buy into the ICC. There’s that little matter of the Constitution, you see.

  4 Responses to “International Criminal Court”

  1. What a pile of bull. The U.S. does not observe the Constitution outside U.S. borders.

    Outside the U.S., the government can do anything it wants, anytime, anywhere. Without any accountability.

    Why are these articles so long? He spends several pages saying nothing relevant. These pundits really need to find a purpose beyond simple-minded demagoguery. It’s really very tiresome.

    "Bang! The US is "unwilling" to investigate or prosecute, and now the ICC has jurisdiction. It can, in principle, order arrests, confine those who are captured, try them and sentence them (in actuality or in absentia) all without any consent or control by the US."

    Yes, I can see it now–armed international thugs busting down the door and taking an American citizen off to the ICC.

    Mr. Beste crows that the genius of the Contstitution is that the government can not be trusted. The problem is that *no one* can be trusted. If you’re a political you should be held to a higher standard. It should come with the territory.

  2. Den Beste doesn’t think "armed international thugs" are going to haul off Americans to an ICC court next week, and neither do I. But most of the international treaties to which the USA is constantly asked to subscribe, including the ICC, entail grievous violations of the Constitutional protections of American citizens. Didn’t you think his Yahoo-France example had any point? I like the rule of law, and prefer not to rely on the assurances and good intentions of European diplomats for my liberty, thanks just the same.

    You want to trust no one? Fine. But in that case I think you might reserve some special suspicion for institutions that have a monopoly on force.

  3. The Yahoo case involves American civilians doing things *in* America. That’s fine–and I don’t believe the ICC is designed for them.

    American soldiers raining down napalm on incorrect targets in Vietnam because of a general’s stupid decision, on the other hand, has somewhat more relevance than your neighbor selling things from his garage on Yahoo.

  4. It’s been suggested by some that what we ought to do is ratify the treaty and then ignore it, as (presumably) the rest of the world will do.

    Not a bad idea in our domestic arrangments, too, I think. The words "under God" in the Pledge of Alliegiance? Declare them unconstitutional, and make kids say them, anyway. The Second Amendment? Sure, it’s there, but we’ll just ignore it. After all, that’s the way American politics works now; why change it?

    Of course, there are others who think that was said should actually be done, in politics as in the rest of life. But they’re all some kind of troglodytic fruitcakes, who expect that a man’s word should be good for longer than it takes him to speak it.

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