The stopped clock named Rand Paul

The stopped clock named Rand Paul

by digby

He's right twice a day:

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said Monday that Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should not be treated as an enemy combatant, a stance that puts him at odds with some of his Republican colleagues.

During an interview with Fox Business, Paul told host Neil Cavuto that he disagreed with Republicans who have called for the enemy combatant designation for Tsarnaev.

"I think we can still preserve the Bill of Rights," Paul said. "I see no reason why our Constitution is not strong enough to convict this young man, with a jury trial, with the Bill of Rights. We do it to horrible people all the time. Rapists and murderers, they get lawyers, they get trials with juries ,and we seem to do a pretty good job of justice, so I think we can do it through our court system."

It's a low bar for civil liberties, but at least he met it. It's more than we can say for a whole lot of other people. (Well, today, anyway. Yesterday, there was this.)

Update: Also too, this today:

“If there is a killer on the loose in a neighborhood, I’m not against drones being used to search them,” he said on the Fox Business Channel...

“Here’s the distinction, I have never argued against any technology being used against having an imminent threat an act of crime going on,” Paul said. “If someone comes out of a liquor store with a weapon and fifty dollars in cash I don’t care if a Drone kills him or a policeman kills him, but it’s different if they want to come fly over your hot tube, or your yard just because they want to do surveillance on everyone, and they want to watch your activities.”

Uhm, really? I think he's a little bit confused. We aren't supposed to just gun down robbers on sight in this country, at least not one's who aren't presenting an obvious threat to a police officer or someone else. And coming from a 2nd Amendment absolutist it's especially odd. After all, what if it's just an average citizen exercising his 2nd Amendment rights to openly carry a gun in a 7-11? And he happens to have fifty dollars in cash? It's ok to hit him with a hellfire missile first and ask questions later?

I appreciate Paul's concerns for our personal privacy, I really do. I believe that drones used for surveillance is a bad idea as well (and I really don't think our public servants need to be subjected to seeing me in the hot tub.) But civil libertarians don't usually endorse the idea of shooting down suspected robbers on the spot. On the other hand, Paul is into forced childbirth as well, so he's already something of a cafeteria civil libertarian.

Using drones to kill criminal suspects from afar is a colossally bad idea. I can see that they could be useful in searches, as with the