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« The future and how to stop it | Main | Everyone knows »

Apr 23, 2009

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Ged

So sad that it was the dedicated men and women of the military that ultimately took the fall for George Bush's administration on the subject of torture at GTMO. No one ever believed that they were just "bad apples" that were acting on their own, and now we have proof. W's government, head by men like Rumsfeld left these brave soldiers out to dry. Of all the crimes being perpetrated then, this one could be one of the worst.

Ged

Sorry, mean Abu Gareb, not GTMO.

Spag

Ah, the pushback to change the subject from the successes of interrogations continues. Wasn't it so much nicer just a few days ago when you could rail against the tactics used and have everyone assume they didn't work?

Fred Gregory

Jule Crittenden puts it prespective for the crowd transfixed to the image of the CM Maddow reading the Move On transcript from her handy teleprompter.

Prosecutions all around

"As the vengeful handwringing angels of the America-bashing left have always said about Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, you can’t just go for the foot soldiers. The fish rots at the head. In this sorry business of abusive interrogations, let’s start with that body that serves as the conscience of the nation … Congress. You remember, the concerned American deliberative body that was apprised at the highest levels of the CIA’s practices and asked if there weren’t tougher methods that could be used against the enemies of our nation. Verdict in the dark days of 2002? Waterboarding OK!

The leftosphere remains strangely silent this morning on this troublesome issue of the involvement of now House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other ranking Dems in harsh-interrogation enablement. But HuffPo is savoring the moment as FOX babbler Shepard Smith gets indignant, “This is America. We do not effing torture!” No, though apparently we do dunk, smack around and turn up the lights and Barney tunes sometimes. It’s war and sometimes it gets ugly."

Ged

Sam, I don't personally give the first shit if it "worked" by your quasi-definition of the term. Torturing prisoners is wrong, amoral, unethical and yes, evil. We shouldn't have done it then, we shouldn't be doing it now and the Maddow report that Ed linked to is more evidence that what you define as "Worked" really means "worked for Bush to try and find a link between Iraq and Al Quaida".

It was wrong when John McCain was tortured, it's wrong when US soldiers are captured and tortured and it was wrong that we did it to our detainees to try and justify war. Stop making excuses for Bush and company and come to your senses.

Bush said in 2002 to the Press's and American's face. "This is the United States. We don't torture." but we did. More lies.

When does it end?

patrick

Cheney told Hannity that the government's banning torture tactics means either they didn't "work", which he says they did, or the terrorist threat has gone away. At least two other explanations come quickly to mind: torture is illegal, and we don't torture, anymore.

Current Republican Party platform: Torture works, and taxes might be too high in the future.

Spag

It is widely believed by many that waterboarding is not an impermissible form of torture. It is illegal now explicitly, not so before 2006.

Either way, I hope all of you Lefties are just as willing to prosecute the Democrats in Congress who knew about waterboarding being used back in 2002 and approved of it and even funded it.

Are you ready to give up your Speaker? If you really believe what you claim to, then the answer can only be "yes".

What is going on here is to make this a "Bush" problem while ignoring the complicity of Congress, Democrats and Republican's. You all got a lot of political mileage out of this, but what is becoming clearer is that your opposition to this is based largely on politics and not any set of ideals. Typical, I would say, but with each new revelation on this and many other topics involving foreign policy it is clear that your stated outrage is conditional.

You hold the power to change that perception if you choose to. Screaming at me or anyone else won't change my opinion until you back up your words with consistency.

Now go find a way to split the hair to get Pelosi, et al, off the hook.

cheripickr

Nice argument, Sam, but no cigar. I've never really heard any lib here or anywhere coo too fondly about Pelosi (or Reid). I think the "knock-knock who's there?" factor is apparent even to them. There's no shortage of democrat senators who are just as liberal but less yahoo-ish than Nancy. If they can convict the entire Bush Administration as war criminals for keeping us safe at the mere expense of sacrificing Pelosi, it's a win-win for them.

confused

I believe those 'most responsible' -- whether Dem or Rep -- should be punished as appropriate under the law.

You're right Sam, if there are members of congress most responsible, then they too should be punished -- speaker or not.


Spag

Oh but where is the outrage? Where are the calls of what did they know and when did they know it? It doesn't stop at Pelosi and Reid. Keep in mind, this is about attacking the Right and Republicans to claim moral superiority and hopefully a generation of Left wing rule. They won't sacrifice Nancy et al. No, they will excuse her.

Beelzebubba

I haven't seen any Right to attack in a while. I've seen a few masquaraders. Putting a board on the door after the cow gets out doesn't count as preemptive or keeping anyone safe.

Bush outspent LBJ and Carter.

The Republicans had the votes to move the abortion issue to the states from 1996-2006, and avoid any chance for appeal, but they were afraid of their own constituents. The fetus fetish was cute as hell, but a fetus can't vote. I knew where that was heading.

Now, Gingrich is a conservative again.

Even the most common of common law courts would have hanged anyone who ever took a dime for a "defense" stipend in the last 50 years.

The bones of Reagan and Nixon should be put on trial, then burned and crushed.

Ladles and jellyspoons, Right has left the building. Just some rhetoric is left.

cheripickr

"I believe those 'most responsible' -- whether Dem or Rep -- should be punished as appropriate under the law."

Yes. The law as it was interpreted and applied by the appropriate authorities during the period of the alleged "crimes"-(2002-2003). If the appropriate authorities were not involved and the appropriate channels not pursued, then that should be taken into consideration as well.

Any judgement of the appropriateness of the actions in question colored by subsequent changes in power or policy, reinterpretation of terms or law, or shifts in governmental philosophy or public mood affected by the passage of time and circumstance, is nothing more than an ideological witch-hunt and an abuse of power.

Spag

Well stated CP.

Beelze, you make some very good points that I agree with for the most part. But Left on the other hand has not had an original thought since 1932- even after all the years of Right (largely the faux Right) being in power.

There is another way. We just need the votes.

confused

I agree CP.

You're right that the criteria should be made very clear from the outset, then whoever turns up guilty, so be it. No cries of witch hunt.

It will be interesting to see who on both sides squirms first.

cheripickr

So we all agree. But in the current political climate I have almost no faith it would be handled as outlined above.

Spag

That assumes anyone should squirm at all for what was done. Now whether some should squirm as a result of their public stance versus what happened in private is another matter.

Patrick

I take seriously the difference between political "offenses" and criminal offenses, and I think the Obama administration does, too. The Republicans have been and are being punished for their political offenses. I don't know whether crimes were committed or not, but as a citizen of country that purports to be governed by law and not men, I'm comfortable with the idea of appointing a prosecutor and convening a grand jury and letting the chips fall where they may. Even if they fall on Pelosi. The Gingrich-Livingston-Hastert hypocrisy-fest proved that a chaotic change of speakers won't cause the Republic to crumble or even cause your party to lose the next presidential election. The problem is that the political and media environment in which we live would turn it into a circus. The Republicans would scream to high heaven that it was a partisan witch-hunt, even if it wasn't, and the media would talk of nothing else. Republicans and conservatives don't mind undermining government by doing things like impeaching twice-elected presidents for getting blown and winning presidential elections by intimidation and partisan decisions of the Supreme Court, but you can be sure they're counting on Democrats, who tend to worry more about the legitimacy of government than vanquishing their opponents at any cost, to turn the other cheek here and move on. That's probably what will happen, and it will probably all turn out fine.

Kim

Hey Patrck, he lied under oath. Reconcile that with "governed by law not men".

cheripickr

"the political and media environment in which we live would turn it into a circus."

Your own one sided take on the political behavior of the right and left respectively, highlights that point. (I'm guilty as well--partisan selective memory and argument feeds on itself)

One important difference between the current situation and the Clinton and Gingrich examples you cite: In those two the crusades didn't begin 7 years and an administration later when the party under attack was essentially powerless and rules and policy changed.
When you say turn the other cheek, few of the current dems ever around to have had theirs slapped in the first place. Let's hope the term "progressive" really does have something to do with being forward looking.

Patrick

Hey, Kim, treaties are the law of the land. Let's have some trials.

cp, I agree with your statements above--and it's a fundamental proposition of law--that potentially criminal acts have to be judged by the law (which includes treaties) in effect at the time of the act. And I don't think Gingrich and Livingston were really "under attack," unless the hypocrisy was keeping them up at night. In any event, I also reluctantly agree, perhaps for different reasons, with the position I perceive you are taking that we should just move on, even though I don't think Republicans would if the tables were turned. It's certainly what the president wants to do. If it were up to me, based on the limited information I (we?) have, I'd swallow hard and move on, and hope that the men and women in our uniforms don't have to pay for this down the road.

Kim

Hey Patrick, was does a treaty have to do with a blue dress?

Fred Gregory

Ged asks " Where does it end ?"

Some thoughts..

Ted Olson: “Torture” probes will never end ( if started )

and this

Presidential Poison
His invitation to indict Bush officials will haunt Obama's Presidency.

Beelzebubba

Andrew J Brown: Say, Kingfish. What is dis disambiguation stuff anyway. Why don't they just keep it all ambiguated.

Kingfish: No Andy! No Andy! you see Andy, it's the disambiguation which holds it all together.

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