Brad Simpson Profile picture
Jul 10, 2018 9 tweets 4 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
1/ As a circuit court judge, Brett Kavanaugh dissented in a 2011 case filed by Indonesian villagers in the province of Aceh who accused Exxon Mobil of letting private security forces murder, torture, and abuse local residents on company property.…
2/ The case was filed by the HR group International Rights Advocates in 2001, citing the 1789 Alien Tort Statute, a law used by other victims of HR abuses overseas to seek civil redress in US courts against corporations or individuals resident in the US.…
3/ The legal argument was that Exxon was responsible for crimes committed by Indonesian security forces working for it on its property. A majority of the DC Circuit Court of Appeals decided that Exxon Mobil could be held legally accountable if the charges were proven true.
4/ Exxon Mobil had worked closely with Indonesian security forces in the northern Sumatran province of Aceh, where it operated the largest gas and oil field in the country and faced opposition from a long-running independence movement subject to vicious state repression.
4/ Kavanaugh basically argued in his dissent that the Alien Tort Statute could not be used in this case if there was no international tribunal where the Acehnese victims could find redress. He argued further that an adverse ruling could “negatively affect US Indonesian relations”
5/ And potentially the so-called war on terror. I will leave the fine grained analysis to others, but here Kavanaugh argues that people murdered, “beaten, burned, shocked with cattle prods, kicked” and abused by a corporation’s employees had no redress.…
I would be interested to know from other human rights lawyers what this suggest about Kavanaugh’s views on corporate responsibility and accountability for abuses.

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More from @bradleyrsimpson

Aug 22, 2018
Some of you may know that my 9yr old son Elijah died 16 months ago from DIPG, a rare pediatric brain cancer. Today my sister showed me this, a newly discovered thank you letter he wrote to his cousin Dylan (now 14) after his last Christmas in 2016. 1/9
It’s filled with all sorts of insider jokes about the things Elijah and his cousins did to torment his sister Genevieve, and special walks that Dylan took Elijah on during his last visit to San Diego. Elijah died less than four months after this. 2/9
It’s been a year and four months to the day since my little boy died and, though I am no longer immobilized by grief throughout the day, all it takes is a little reminder of him and the pain is as raw as ever. I spent a year caring for him as he slowly died, 3/9
Read 9 tweets
Aug 15, 2018
It’s easy to note that Trump’s decision to revoke John Brennan’s security clearance smacks of pettiness and vindictiveness. Both true. Less clear is the extent to which it ‘damages’ national security. Yes, many top level intel officials retain security 1/
Clearances so they can continue to consult with their successors. But more than 2 million private citizens have secret or top secret clearances. Brennan’s clearance level is more valuable as currency in the private sector and for the military and intelligence 2/
Contractors on whose boards he sits and for whom he consults. This is more an attack on Brennan’s earning capacity (and for this reason a very Trumpian move). It’s also potentially a blow to scholars seeking to declassify top secret intel materials, since 3/
Read 5 tweets
Aug 11, 2018
So now that Trump has begun moving the government bureaucracy to implement his insane idea for a Space Force, it’s time to talk about who might run it. Given Trump’s personality, here are a few ideas 1/4
Buzz Lightyear - Pros: loyal, manly in a blustery sort of way, invents his own reality, voiced by Mel Gibson, American exceptionalist, and appeals to white nationalist supporters. Cons: not@too bright 2/4
Grand Moff Tarkin - Pros: willing to destroy entire star systems, ambitious, sycophantic to superiors, utterly amoral, a good bureaucrat, vicious bureaucratic infighter, white

Cons: rivalry with Mike Pence, who already plays this role. 3/4
Read 4 tweets
Jun 29, 2018
1/ Barbara Deming explains nonviolent resistance best in a classic essay titled “On Revolution and Equilibrium”: “With one hand we say to one who is angry, or to an oppressor, or to an unjust system, ‘Stop what you are doing. I refuse to honor the role you are choosing
to play, I refuse to obey you, I refuse to cooperate with your demands, I refuse to build the walls and the bombs. I refuse to pay for the guns. With this hand I will even interfere with the wrong you are doing. I want to disrupt the easy pattern of your life.’ 2/
But then the advocate of nonviolence raises the other hand. It is raised outstretched — maybe with love and sympathy, maybe not — but always outstretched . . . With this hand we say, ‘I won’t let go of you or cast you out of the human race. 3/
Read 4 tweets

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