As we consider Blago’s criminal activities, we ought to think about other political wrongdoing. Glenn Greenwald writes in Salon:
The bipartisan Senate Armed Services Committee report issued on Thursday — which documents that “former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other senior U.S. officials share much of the blame for detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba” and “that Rumsfeld’s actions were ‘a direct cause of detainee abuse‘ at Guantanamo and ‘influenced and contributed to the use of abusive techniques … in Afghanistan and Iraq'” — raises an obvious and glaring question: how can it possibly be justified that the low-level Army personnel carrying out these policies at Abu Ghraib have been charged, convicted and imprisoned, while the high-level political officials and lawyers who directed and authorized these same policies remain free of any risk of prosecution?
Greenwald has a decent point. But there is a difference between authorizing policies that can lead to abuses and actually carrying out abuses. Maybe I’m drawing a distinction without a difference. I’ll have to think about it some more.