By The Progressive on September 25, 2007
September 25, 2007 By Matthew Rothschild

At his speech to the UN, Bush had the audacity to invoke the Universal Declaration of Human Rights several times, despite the fact that he’s been violating it over and over again.

He was quite selective in the articles that he mentioned by name.

Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 5.

Article 6 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 6.

Article 7 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 7.

Article 8 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted to him.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 8.

Article 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 9.

Article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal….”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 10.

Article 11 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “Everyone charged with a penal offense has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defense.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 11.

Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence…. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.”

For some reason, Bush failed to mention Article 12.

The reason is obvious.

By countenancing brutal treatment of prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere,

By disappearing detainees to secret prisons around the world,

By holding kangaroo courts in Guantanamo,

By granting himself—and having Congress approve—the right to label anyone an enemy combatant and toss them behind bars, without habeas corpus protections,

By using the Patriot Act and the NSA and a signing statement on last year’s postal law to spy on Americans or invade their privacy,

Bush has systematically violated the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

What a joke, what chutzpah, that after so sullying that declaration Bush tried to uphold it in New York.

But he left his dirty fingerprints all over it

Add new comment

By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.

More

Subscribe to The Progressive and Get A Free 2015 Calendar

An Indian journalist globally renowned as an advocate for the poor, ...

John Nichols on the luckiest break Democrats have had in the 2014 election cycle...

The Ebola crisis has revealed severe deficiencies in how the American health care system works, experts say.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.


Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

Public School Shakedown

Progressive Media Project

Newsletter