"In an interview at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative research group where he is a fellow, Mr. Meese said the 'liberal ideas of extending the power of the state' were to blame for an out-of-control criminal justice system." Ahem.

You know, Ed Meese III, it is nice that you have come around, in some fashion, to the idea that we maybe shouldn't have the largest prison population in the world. Seriously, good for you.

But also, and more importantly: fuck you, Ed Meese.

It was actually Reagan's Attorney General, Mr. Ed Meese, who attempted to criminalize pornography and abortion, and who packed the federal judiciary with reactionary "tough-on-crime" assholes.

Ed Meese, once again as Attorney General, chaired the National Drug Policy Board. And during his tenure, federal spending on drug "enforcement" (arrests and seizures) increased by $700 million while drug prevention and education programs decreased. Ed Meese decided every worker in America should be drug tested all the time.

Oh, Bush-appointed former judge who is now concerned about overzealous prosecution, what is your complaint?

"A joint on a yacht, and the whole thing is forfeited," said Paul Cassell, a law professor at the University of Utah and a former federal judge appointed by President George W. Bush.

Funny! You are mad, as a conservative, that the government is seizing private property. Do you know who pioneered that approach to fighting drugs? Attorney General Ed Meese!

So, Ed Meese, we respectfully disagree with you, when you say that "liberal ideas of extending the power of the state" are to blame for an out-of-control criminal justice system. You are, after all, the Ed Meese who said once said this:

U.S News & World Report: You criticize the Miranda ruling, which gives suspects the right to have a lawyer present before police questioning. Shouldn't people, who may be innocent, have such protection?
Meese: Suspects who are innocent of a crime should. But the thing is, you don't have many suspects who are innocent of a crime. That's contradictory. If a person is innocent of a crime, then he is not a suspect.

But Ed Meese does not actually care about the massive and growing prison population. What he is mad about is that there are too many laws, in general.

"It's a violation of federal law to give a false weather report," Mr. Meese said. "People get put in jail for importing lobsters."

Maybe they do! Maybe there is a guy in jail, somewhere in America, for importing a lobster. But millions more get put in jail for smoking weed. And we think we should probably deal with that before we get to work fixing this "false weather report" zero tolerance policy that you are suddenly so concerned about.