Pew poll: Support for torture highest among most devoutly religious

posted at 7:20 pm on April 30, 2009 by Allahpundit

Feast your eyes. Wonders Rod Dreher, “What on earth are these Christians hearing at church?!” No doubt Hitch would snicker and mumble something sardonic about the Inquisition, but I think the results probably indicate political correlation more so than religious influence. Evangelicals are more likely to be conservative and conservatives are more likely to support coercive interrogation, ergo evangelicals are more likely to support coercive interrogation; atheists are more likely to be liberal and therefore less likely to support it. In other words, the more interesting question may be not whether the Bible’s driving Christians to torture but why Christians are ignoring the Bible when thinking politically about this issue.

Or are they? Here’s what the Church’s Catechism says about torture:

2297 Kidnapping and hostage taking bring on a reign of terror; by means of threats they subject their victims to intolerable pressures. They are morally wrong. Terrorism threatens, wounds, and kills indiscriminately; it is gravely against justice and charity.

Torture which uses physical or moral violence to extract confessions, punish the guilty, frighten opponents, or satisfy hatred is contrary to respect for the person and for human dignity. Except when performed for strictly therapeutic medical reasons, directly intended amputations, mutilations, and sterilizations performed on innocent persons are against the moral law.[90]

2298 In times past, cruel practices were commonly used by legitimate governments to maintain law and order, often without protest from the Pastors of the Church, who themselves adopted in their own tribunals the prescriptions of Roman law concerning torture. Regrettable as these facts are, the Church always taught the duty of clemency and mercy. She forbade clerics to shed blood. In recent times it has become evident that these cruel practices were neither necessary for public order, nor in conformity with the legitimate rights of the human person. On the contrary, these practices led to ones even more degrading. It is necessary to work for their abolition. We must pray for the victims and their tormentors.

Strictly speaking, torturing someone to gain intelligence isn’t “extracting a confession.” It’s being done to stop an attack, which is about as pro-life as you can get. On the other hand, it’s hard to argue that you’re turning the other cheek in such circumstances. Your exit question: Is torture “un-Christian”?

Update: Another un-Christian result: Catholics support Notre Dame’s invitation to Obama, 50/28.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4

So says the person who lives in the bright, candy-colored paradise where there is no gray and all is as it should be.

Thanks for your heartfelt and eloquent response. But you apparently see only two choices–torture or capitulation. Yes, there is a gray area between those two extremes. There are other alternatives to torture.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:49 PM

Ack. Sorry about the double post! Dumb computer!

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:51 PM

Pretty big assumption there. Torture (and yes, waterboarding fits most legal definitions of torture

No, it doesn’t and you’ve offered no proof other than repeatedly saying that it does.

hardly constitutes “standing up to the bad guys,”

Not taking action to get intellegence to prevent attacks is specifically “not standing up to the bad guys”

that there are other more effective methods of interrogation,

I (and many others here) have been asking you for days to produce some examples. Not a peep from you.

I’m sorry your impression is so skewed. Like I said, I don’t hate conservatives.

Reading every one of you posts on this site belies that statement.

I just find it incredible that conservatives actually defend torture. It’s really quite remarkable how far conservatism has fallen from its former associations with moral rectitude and traditional values.
Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:39 PM

And I’m still find it incredible that you actually defend terrorists from actions that aren’t torture (your repeatedly saying it is does not make it true) in order to demonise conservatives which you claim not to hate. Nice logical gymnastics there.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 8:53 PM

Religious_Zealot on April 30, 2009 at 8:33 PM

Very well put. Agreed.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 8:53 PM

And as for your Frederick Douglass quote, are you saying there is no difference between those who cruelly exploit their fellow man for labor and those who torture to prevent an even darker, more perverse vision of that era from coming into being?

No, I’m suggesting that adherence to organized religion seems to promote authoritarian and repressive thinking in certain instances. How else to explain Douglass’s experiences and the suggestive results of this poll?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:54 PM

Thanks for your heartfelt and eloquent response. But you apparently see only two choices–torture or capitulation. Yes, there is a gray area between those two extremes. There are other alternatives to torture.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:49 PM

And yet again you fail to give even one example.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 8:55 PM

No, I’m suggesting that adherence to organized religion seems to promote authoritarian and repressive thinking in certain instances.
Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:54 PM

Gee, I wonder what examples of “authoritarian and repressive” religious movements we can find in the world today? Oh yeah, there is that one who conservatives are being demonized for actually wanting to fight against.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:00 PM

Is that the first quotation of the Catechism on Hotair.com? Booyah!

AbaddonsReign on April 30, 2009 at 9:00 PM

Christians believe in the concept of good and evil. They understand that if great good can come from “torturing” evildoers, then they are more likely to support it. Besides, most christians believe in a God that rewards evil by send them to burn in HELL. Humm…isn’t that everlasting “torture”?

tdavisjr on April 30, 2009 at 9:01 PM

Grow Fins part Deux:

Pretty big assumption there.

When you study how many times the Jews and other “undesirables” were victimized during the interbellum in Germany (pre-Fuhrer) in plain sight of police and soldiers who did NOTHING, I think you will see that “assumption” is not an assumption at all.

(and yes, waterboarding fits most legal definitions of torture, hence Bybee’s legal highwire act trying to legitimize the illegitimate

Oh, I also view waterboarding as torture. However, when the situation demands it, it is hardly illegitimate, particularly when you consider Western Europe was likely saved from another occupation in 1944 by the effects of “enhanced interrogation” of a far more ugly sort on a German General JUST before the Battle of the Bulge kicked off.

hardly constitutes “standing up to the bad guys,”

I think every Commander from Haig to Eisenhower and beyond would disagree.

It is easy to lecture when you don’t have to run a multi-million man effort while hoping you can outwit your enemy and stave off a disaster of the worst magnitude, both for your men and for the innocent.

and of course you conveniently forget that confessions from torture rarely produce useful intelligence,

“Rarely?” As ye olde Cheka books from the Russian Civil War tell, “if you can’t wring anything out of them, you AREN’T DOING IT RIGHT!”

Much depends on the approach. If you just randomly punch them all over in between occasionally asking them questions, you can’t be suprised when you come up dry.

The Cheka (forerunners of the NKVD and KGB) quickly learned that you have to set up a Punishment/Reward system, find the weak spots, crack them, and (ABOVE ALL) make abundantly clear that giving misinformation is a mistake they will not survive.

It does me no pleasure to quote one of history’s evilest organizations, but they were expects, and their hauls were not unimpressive.

And they weren’t the only ones.

After all, torture is a close cousin of Police interrogations, and while they often fail, they often work, too.

that there are other more effective methods of interrogation

It all depends on who you are working with. Those who are not susceptible to “gentler” ways are key “candidates.”

However, you must realize that torture is not an entirely separate thing in and of itself (save for sadists), but one component of the multi-armed machine of interrogation. You don’t waterboard someone who will just talk to you straight out or who will after a week or so in isolation.

squandering our moral authority in the fight against terror produces greater negatives in the long run.

And I suppose that letting those “Second Wave” attacks devastate the Western Coast due to our refusal to waterboard would NOT be squandering our moral authority?

I don’t like torture, and don’t think it should be used casually, but there are times when there are no other alternatives.

I’m sorry your impression is so skewed.

Oh, so it is only hist impression that is “so” skewed?

I will admit it. His is. And so is mine. However, do you even realize that your own is as well?

I just find it incredible that conservatives actually defend torture.

And I just find in incredible that you do not realize that sometimes torture is necessary, and has actually changed the course of history.

It is a dark tool, true, but not one we can always avoid using when in the face of an imminent and dangerous threat.

It’s really quite remarkable how far conservatism has fallen from its former associations with moral rectitude and traditional values.

But that’s what happens when you let the Limbaughs and Coulters take over your party, I guess.

Spare me the condescension. I am just shocked you have the NERVE to talk about how we have “fallen” from our “moral rectitude and tarditional values” without realizing that those VERY values owe much of their continued existence to the careful application of a knife to a German general’s ear on the eve of the Battle of the Bulge.

You sometimes have to take ugly measures to preserve your morals, your values, and the innocent from a threat that is even uglier than the measures you employed.

But you can’t realize that, can you?

Well, I guess that is what happens when your party and your view of history are distorted by those who do not realize that freedom is not free, and that the things one does in its service are often not pretty.

Turtler on April 30, 2009 at 9:01 PM

Pretty big assumption there. Torture (and yes, waterboarding fits most legal definitions of torture, hence Bybee’s legal highwire act trying to legitimize the illegitimate)…

Why do you believe waterboarding to be torture? Ex post facto citing of ‘most legal definitions’ is an unacceptable argument for this too. I am merely asking why you believe what you believe. Thanks.

…that there are other more effective methods of interrogation…
Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:39 PM

Is this an appeal to your authority?

anuts on April 30, 2009 at 9:02 PM

UN COnvention on Torture, signed and ratified by no other than Ronald Reagan.

Article 1.
1. For the purposes of this Convention, torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.
2. This article is without prejudice to any international instrument or national legislation which does or may contain provisions of wider application.

Article 2.
1. Each State Party shall take effective legislative, administrative, judicial or other measures to prevent acts of torture in any territory under its jurisdiction.
2. No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat or war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.
3. An order from a superior officer or a public authority may not be invoked as a justification of torture.

[my emphasis]

Certain lines should never be crossed. Torture is one of them. And interrogation is an art. A skilled interrogator has many more methods up his or her sleeve than terrorizing the suspect.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:02 PM

Gee, I wonder what examples of “authoritarian and repressive” religious movements we can find in the world today? Oh yeah, there is that one who conservatives are being demonized for actually wanting to fight against.

Yeah. Hmmmm. Poll suggests religious people support torture. Douglass identified religiosity as a hallmark of the cruelest of the cruel slaveholders. Islamic fanatics murder and terrorize in the name of religion. Fits the pattern I’d say.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:06 PM

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 8:48 PM

It is truly unbelievable. I put your post on the thread that Ed wrote about his local protesters.

Cindy Munford on April 30, 2009 at 9:06 PM

Certain lines should never be crossed. Torture is one of them. And interrogation is an art. A skilled interrogator has many more methods up his or her sleeve than terrorizing the suspect.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:02 PM

Still waiting for some of those methods….

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:08 PM

1. For the purposes of this Convention, torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession,

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:02 PM

Therein lies the problem. That is vague. Where is the line drawn on severe pain or suffering? Is scaring someone considered severe mental pain and suffering now? Might as well ban Halloween and most good horror movies then.

coyoterex on April 30, 2009 at 9:12 PM

Yeah. Hmmmm. Poll suggests religious people support torture. Douglass identified religiosity as a hallmark of the cruelest of the cruel slaveholders. Islamic fanatics murder and terrorize in the name of religion. Fits the pattern I’d say.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:06 PM

Being an atheist I don’t mind your snarks about religion as much as you think I might, but I find your moral relativism between support for “torture” and the actions of islamic terrorists disgusting.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:12 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 8:39 PM

You are a real piece of work. People like you think a dog with rabies should be picked up and carried to a vet.

People like me shoot the frickin’ dog.

Guess who lives longer?

Tim Zank on April 30, 2009 at 9:13 PM

Therein lies the problem. That is vague. Where is the line drawn on severe pain or suffering? Is scaring someone considered severe mental pain and suffering now? Might as well ban Halloween and most good horror movies then.

coyoterex on April 30, 2009 at 9:12 PM

By the very definition that he proposes, one could argue that Growing Fin’s posts here are intended to inflict mental pain on conservatives. Now certainly if we started t call him/her a torturer and one who supports torture he/she would object and say “that’s not torture”. Only he/she can draw that line I guess.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:15 PM

Spare me the condescension

I was being ironic.

sometimes torture is necessary,

I have to mull that over, roll it around on the tongue, to let the full weight of it sink in. Sometimes torture is necessary. Funny isn’t it, how all of our codified systems of morality and law, all of our hopeful expressions of virtue, shy away from actually enshrining that sentiment into law as a “good.” Quite the opposite. If it’s so obvious, why do we hide it away in the dark?

Why is that?

Do you not concede that the “dark tool” of torture contaminates those it touches, absolutely? That the triumph of our “values” in WW2 was sullied by the hundreds of thousands of innocents incinerated in cities?

But I guess that’s the modern quandary, isn’t it?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:16 PM

Christians have been persecuted for quite some time and know what real torture is.

Waterboarding is not torture.

cntrlfrk on April 30, 2009 at 9:18 PM

I’m with you scrappy, Grow Fins is torturing all of us. Unmercifully, I might add.

Tim Zank on April 30, 2009 at 9:22 PM

Certain lines should never be crossed. Torture is one of them. And interrogation is an art. A skilled interrogator has many more methods up his or her sleeve than terrorizing the suspect.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:02 PM

Interrogation is an art? I can agree with that. Which would make its definition and application a lot more arbitrary and therefore more open for interpretation than say if it were a science. Skilled interrogators have been using waterboarding as one of their methods with consent, approval, and under careful monitoring of psychologists whose expertise I find highly more credible than politicians and bureaucrats who have political axes to grind while they change definitions and laws to condemn opponents. Not foreign enemies of the state mind you, but political opponents.

However, I appreciate your willingness to engage. As for this:

Article 1.
1. For the purposes of this Convention, torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession

You believe waterboarding is at the level of severity with regards to pain and suffering to rise to torture?

anuts on April 30, 2009 at 9:22 PM

Scrappy

A bit ironic don’t you think that you find my “moral relativism” disgusting but your own quite defensible. Ah, humanity. Was it ever thus!

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:22 PM

There is a quote from General Sherman I recalled. I did a search and found it on WIKI along with a couple others I hadn’t seen:

“War is the remedy our enemies have chosen, and I say let us give them all they want.”

“If the people raise a great howl against my barbarity and cruelty, I will answer that war is war, and not popularity seeking.”

“If they want eternal war, well and good; we accept the issue, and will dispossess them and put our friends in their place. I know thousands and millions of good people who at simple notice would come to North Alabama and accept the elegant houses and plantations there. If the people of Huntsville think different, let them persist in war three years longer, and then they will not be consulted. Three years ago by a little reflection and patience they could have had a hundred years of peace and prosperity, but they preferred war; very well. Last year they could have saved their slaves, but now it is too late.

All the powers of earth cannot restore to them their slaves, any more than their dead grandfathers. Next year their lands will be taken, for in war we can take them, and rightfully, too, and in another year they may beg in vain for their lives. A people who will persevere in war beyond a certain limit ought to know the consequences. Many, many peoples with less pertinacity have been wiped out of national existence.”
- Letter to Maj. R. M. SAWYER (Vicksburg, January 31, 1864)

War is a terrible thing, and the more terrible you make it for the enemy the sooner it will be over, ask the Germans and Japanese.

I think you give back to the terrorists a hundred-fold what they give us and they will start thinking about the costs of attacking the US.

There is not much you could do to these scum that would make me lose a wink of sleep.
Just my opinion.

mbrans on April 30, 2009 at 9:23 PM

This from Genesis 9:

“Whoever sheds man’s blood,
By man his blood shall be shed,
For in the image of God
He made man.”

Pretty clear. In other words capital punishment with a capital P.

We’ll see less torture now ’cause the Infantry is just going to make sure that enemy combatants die on the battlefield so they don’t clog up our liberal courts.

Mojave Mark on April 30, 2009 at 9:26 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:16 PM

So you would rather a relative or friend die than a terrorist get wet? The sacrifice of our brave men and women who served in World War II and ever since will never be “sullied”. They gave their lives for you and me. My father landed at Normandy. That is the kind of bravery I’m talking about. It’s the difference between sacrifice and self-absorption. Liberals will never understand that.

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 9:26 PM

You believe waterboarding is at the level of severity with regards to pain and suffering to rise to torture?

anuts

Yes.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:27 PM

Ugh. You’re so tedious. And I’m not even religious.

Jim Treacher on April 30, 2009 at 9:29 PM

You believe waterboarding is at the level of severity with regards to pain and suffering to rise to torture?

anuts

Yes.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:27 PM

I am curious. How was it did you arrive at this conclusion?

anuts on April 30, 2009 at 9:29 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:27 PM

Congratulations, you believe things that aren’t true. You are side-by-side with Christians.

Jim Treacher on April 30, 2009 at 9:30 PM

So you would rather a relative or friend die than a terrorist get wet?

Obviously not. But laws exist to save us from the heat of our passions, right? Once you abandon that principle then what’s the point of pretending you’re any better than your enemy? Isn’t that why we make a big deal about the Constitution?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:30 PM

Jim Treacher

See. We’re not so different ;)

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:31 PM

Grammar correction:

How is it that you…

anuts on April 30, 2009 at 9:31 PM

A bit ironic don’t you think that you find my “moral relativism” disgusting but your own quite defensible. Ah, humanity. Was it ever thus!

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:22 PM

My own? Please do illustrate, as I (and so many other here) have pointed out yours.

At least you’re admitting your own finally, even if while trying to use the “I know you are but what am I?” childish areguement.

And still waiting on those alternative you so frequently elude to but have never actually given a single example of.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:31 PM

My father landed at Normandy.

My grandfather landed at Gallipoli. I understand that. They gave their lives so that laws, justice, and truth should be upheld. Torturing in their name throws their sacrifices away. I’m not being facetious.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:33 PM

“What on earth are these Christians hearing at church?!”

The Old Testament. If it’s ok for God to make mothers boil their children and eat them then pouring water down people’s nose is really just another substitute for morning jogging.

radiofreevillage on April 30, 2009 at 9:34 PM

According to the Pew Poll, a group that can hardly be accused of being conservative, 71% of Americans believe that torture can be justified at least rarely, and only 22% believe it can never be justified.

– 15% believe torture can often be justified.
– 34% say it can sometimes be justified.
– 22% believe it can be justified only rarely.

It’s highly unusual to obtain a super majority in any public opinion sample, but here we have a super majority approving torture at least in rare circumstances.

Why?

I think this is American common sense at work. My guess is that very few Americans “support” torture. We are generally repelled by it due to our Christian beliefs and American values.

However, we Americans are a pragmatic people and know there are circumstances, emergencies, in which actions that we might normally abhor must be taken to protect lives.

Some of us, for religious purposes, are opposed to torture under all circumstances. I respect such beliefs.

I am one of those who can support torture only under the rarest of circumstances. And I am still uncertain as to whether I would classify as “torture,” the form of waterboarding and other coercive interrogation techniques used on suspected mass murderers. However, even if it is, I believe there was every reason for the interrogators to believe that they could obtain information that would save lives. And even if there is debate over whether that did indeed occur, to me the fact that the interrogators had a valid belief it was true, is a rare case that justifies such techniques.

Those who conflate such views into “conservatives support torture” are either woefully misinformed, or intentionally demagoguing for partisan political gain and willing to risk the loss of more American lives or partisan political gain. And they are doing this in opposition to a super majority of public opinion.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:34 PM

Grow Fins:

Have you seen the several videos of reporters and many protestors who voluntarily get waterboarded?

anuts on April 30, 2009 at 9:35 PM

Grow Fins part Treis:

(here we go again…)

Thanks for your heartfelt and eloquent response.

Thank you for the compliment.

But you apparently see only two choices–torture or capitulation. Yes, there is a gray area between those two extremes. There are other alternatives to torture.

True.

I’m pretty sure that we we still would have defeated Nazi Germany and its “Nordwind” offensive without putting the one general to the blade.

And I’m also pretty sure that the US would have survived a “second wave” on the West Coast from not wringing the information to stop it out of KSM.

But in the former, it would only take a few extra months of combat, perhaps a few dozen thousand more Western Allied casualties, a larger area of Soviet conquest, a few hundred thousand more dead Germans, more dead “undesirables” in the camps…

And in the latter we have a few million/billion more dollars in damages, anywhere from dozens to thousands of more dead, wounded, and missing, and even more chaos.

Yes, we could have made do.

But are those alternatives really that appealing?

No, I’m suggesting that adherence to organized religion seems to promote authoritarian and repressive thinking in certain instances.

Ok, I know I’m going to take flak here, but I can see that as a possibility. However, where you run with it, on the other hand…

How else to explain Douglass’s experiences and the suggestive results of this poll?

Um, lemme try…

1. Douglass served under a tyrannic and archaic system that exploited human beings who had the misfortune to be born to the wrong family and the wrong race for no reasons higher than profit and racial fury, and…

2. Those polled realize we are at war with a tyrannical and absolutist group of sects promoting a religious theocracy and death to any who reject it, polled religious included?

While that isn’t the whole story by far, I’m going to go out on a limb here and say it might have something to do with that.

UN COnvention on Torture, signed and ratified by no other than Ronald Reagan.

Nice, but you are missing the larger point: where was the UN when Hitler slaughtered dozens of millions? Where was the UN when Japan carved an empire out of the scorched ashes of Asiaa? Where was the UN when the Soviets bottled up their people and shot dissenters like tin cans?

The UN is an ideal more than anything else, borne out of Wilson’s dreams for a peaceful world following WWI. However, once the lead starts flying on a global level, it is inert without the force of a nation-state to support it, as demonstrated by its’ boondoogles in Africa and failure to cage Saddam.

It is a sweet concept, but is not something to place all one’s eggs in.

Certain lines should never be crossed.

Absolutely.

Torture is one of them.

Nope.

And interrogation is an art. A skilled interrogator has many more methods up his or her sleeve than terrorizing the suspect.

Ah, now this ties in well with what I said before.

You are indeed correct that interrogation is an art, and that any interrogator worth their salt has more resources and options than simply waterboarding.

However, while you are correct that torture is an art and not always the best interrogative device to use, would it be so much to say that sometimes it is? Every individual is unique from one another, and each how different weakpoints. Even the sadists at the Cheka realized that it wasn’t always preferable to saw arms off when you actually wanted to learn something (as opposed to political interrogations, where there was no reason not to),but that sometimes it was.

It isn’t a pleasant art to reflect upon, but it is one that has pr oven relatively reliable throughout the ages, if not infallible. It is dangerous, and must be used carefully lest it go too far, but sometimes use it we must.

I was being ironic.

Fair enough.

I have to mull that over, roll it around on the tongue, to let the full weight of it sink in. Sometimes torture is necessary. Funny isn’t it, how all of our codified systems of morality and law, all of our hopeful expressions of virtue, shy away from actually enshrining that sentiment into law as a “good.” Quite the opposite. If it’s so obvious, why do we hide it away in the dark?

Why is that?

Because while it is literally ugly as sin, it is sometimes the least of all evils?

Do you not concede that the “dark tool” of torture contaminates those it touches, absolutely?

Contaminates all it touches? Yes. Absolutely? Not necessarily. Much depends on the individual, the cause, and the logic behind it.

That the triumph of our “values” in WW2 was sullied by the hundreds of thousands of innocents incinerated in cities?

Yes, it is not a pleasant thing to realize. However, when one realizes that those bombings- tragic as they are rightfully decried as- both not only were in response to the perfidy of ruthless opponents (who both used them FAR before the Western Allies did) and also helped prevent an even more horrifically slaughter of the innocents (Japan is a particularly good example of this, with the projections for Operation Downfall), and one realizes that there was a “lighter” side to the slaughter in Dresden, Berlin, Tokyo, and Hiroshima.

But I guess that’s the modern quandary, isn’t it?

No, but perhaps part of it.

How do you resist the darker creatures human nature often creates without becoming just a warped mirror of them?

I don’t have the answer. I wish I did.

But while it is a careful balance to walk, it is one that must be walked, lest such individuals and their followers run unrestrained, unopposed.

Turtler on April 30, 2009 at 9:36 PM

I am one of those who can support torture only under the rarest of circumstances. And I am still uncertain as to whether I would classify as “torture,” the form of waterboarding and other coercive interrogation techniques used on suspected mass murderers. However, even if it is, I believe there was every reason for the interrogators to believe that they could obtain information that would save lives. And even if there is debate over whether that did indeed occur, to me the fact that the interrogators had a valid belief it was true, is a rare case that justifies such techniques.

Any more prevarication and you could be a lawyer. And I’m the “relativist”!

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:36 PM

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:34 PM

Well said.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:37 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:30 PM

Fine. You don’t want “enhanced interrogation”. So, tell me. A terrorist in our custody has the location of a dirty nuke set to go off in 24 houirs in the Northeast. How do you retrieve the information? Intelligence has already been exhausted. He is the only one who knows.

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 9:37 PM

Grow Fins:

Have you seen the several videos of reporters and many protestors who voluntarily get waterboarded?

anuts on April 30, 2009 at 9:35 PM

Hence the reason it is not truly torture, imho. Don’t see reporters or protesters volunteering to have fingernails pulled out, limbs broken, or family members put in rape rooms.

coyoterex on April 30, 2009 at 9:37 PM

Cindy Munford on April 30, 2009 at 9:06 PM

Thanks. My old brain is having difficulty keeping up with this thread, let alone others. I think it has something to do with losing something as you age, but I forget what it is.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:39 PM

It’s simple: Water-boarding is not torture.

bluelightbrigade on April 30, 2009 at 9:41 PM

It is a government’s most solemn and sacred duty to protect it’s citizens from harm both domestic and foreign.

If a country puts a terrorist’s comfort above the lives of its citizens…

…then it has abdicated this solemn and sacred duty.

What is the price of a life?

Some on the left think that the price is not worth the discomfort of a terrorist.

I think that that opinion is weak, cowardly and, yes, evil.

Religious_Zealot on April 30, 2009 at 9:43 PM

We’re JUST like the Imperial Junta’s men.

Turtler on April 30, 2009 at 8:24 PM

Yup….you have become what you most despised, a party in power that tortured in secret, just like Hotair has turned into dailyKos with its incessant content-free Obama bashathon.
Dr. Manzi lays it down.

strangelet on April 30, 2009 at 9:44 PM

How do you resist the darker creatures human nature often creates without becoming just a warped mirror of them?

Which is really the question we’re all struggling with. I wish I did. But if torture was so effective, so necessary, why did we need to waterboard KSM 183 times in one month. If it works, hell, why stop at KSM? Why not do it all the time? That’s the logic of the pro-torture argument.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:44 PM

And I’m the “relativist”!

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:36 PM

I think you misunderstand the term “moral relativist”.

Making two very different and nearly opposite ends of the moral spectrum seem as if they were equally immorral = moral relativism. Here’s an example:
Equating pouring water on someones face to the atrocities of islamic terrorist attacks.

I’m sure that you already understood the distinction, but just ignored it for the sake you your arguement, but thought you might like the refresher anyway.

You’re welcome.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:47 PM

A terrorist in our custody has the location of a dirty nuke set to go off in 24 houirs in the Northeast. How do you retrieve the information? Intelligence has already been exhausted. He is the only one who knows.

This is a hypothetical. It’s a ridiculous, loaded straw man. How about this.

A “terrorist” in our custody is believed to have the location of a dirty nuke set to go off in 24 houirs in the Northeast. We torture him repeatedly, only it turns out he was some Muslim guy we pulled off the street. His family sues.

See? Pretty silly hypothetical game.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:48 PM

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:12 PM
Jim Treacher on April 30, 2009 at 9:29 PM

Dear Scrappy and Jim,

As a Catholic, I support the right of atheists to approve waterboarding of terrorists to save American lives.

We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:49 PM

See? Pretty silly hypothetical game.
Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:48 PM

Only if you want to evade the answer.

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 9:49 PM

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:39 PM

Not to worry, it will turn up and it will seem like Christmas!! Seriously I pasted it to the other thread because someone mentioned it and they couldn’t get their link wouldn’t work and yours did. Worked out perfect.

Cindy Munford on April 30, 2009 at 9:50 PM

Don’t let Janet Reno hear about this or she’ll track ‘em down and fry every last one of ‘em.

viking01 on April 30, 2009 at 9:50 PM

strangelet Episode II:

Yup….you have become what you most despised, a party in power that tortured in secret, just like Hotair has turned into dailyKos with its incessant content-free Obama bashathon.

Where do I start here?

A. May I point out that the Imperial Junta was ALL-too open about what they did, and thus your analogy is false?

B. May I point out that we as a PARTY did not torture, but the GOVERNMENT- the chosen representatives of the people- did? And that these measures were approved by individuals on BOTH major parties?

C. May I point out that I am not one of those calling for a coup d’tat?

Turtler on April 30, 2009 at 9:51 PM

Part of the problem here is that so many people want to oversimplify. That torture may never may be justified in common criminal cases–even for a paedophile who has tortured children in gruesome ways–does not imply that torture may not be justified in a war. War is hell and our enemies should not necessarily feel safe. I believe we should use the more moderate forms of torture not just to extract information, but to give nightmares to our enemies. Historically, we backed away from this, because “our” wars were European wars and we were all very much alike. We weren’t fighting for survival as much as we were pawns in monarch’s power struggles. It makes sense for the pawns not want to be tortured, and I heartily concur in the Europe of the mid-19th century torture was an unnecessary evil.

It’s different now. We have reverted to the world of Antiquity. We fight now for our survival, and we need to be very honest about it if we are to survive. It is simply outside the realm of the possible that we, the United States, are going to fight a war with honorable enemies who just seek power and money. We owe so much money to our honorable enemies that they wouldn’t think to fight a war against us. (A huge national debt does have some advantages.)

So the only enemies we face are enemies who seek our genocide, like muslims or marxists. They will torture no matter what we do. So the idea that our not torturing in some way prevents our soldiers from being tortured is just nonsense. Further, our current enemies who seek our genocide would like nothing more than to set off an atomic weapon on our soil. Just imagine that they succeed close to you. Think of your son, daughter, domestic partner, mother, aunt, or uncle. This is not an unfair thing to ask you to imagine as it is the fondest desire of our genocidal enemies. Is there really any moral reason not to hurt such enemies in any way possible. There are certainly good moral reasons to think whatever we do to stop such people is worth it. We must win this war!

Some people have brought up that we signed a UN treaty against torture. The UN is basically an anti-American/anti-Israel agency and not much else. Why the hell should we follow any UN treaty?

thuja on April 30, 2009 at 9:52 PM

Why do liberals hate 71% of the American public

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:54 PM

Let us try considering torture as a more extreme (and personalized) form of armed-and-deadly-force. Armed and deadly force is justified to protect others from harm done by the same means, and sometimes to protect them from harm done by other means.

On similar grounds, we can argue that torture to extract information can be justified when

– That information, if it exists, can allow an atrocity to be averted, and

– There is a very high likelyhood that the individual in question has a material part of that information.

The person to be tortured has neither legal nor moral right to withhold the information; in doing so he is assisting in the atrocity. His very silence is a crime against humanity.

This does not in any way justify torture for pleasure, torture for revenge or punishment, or torture of those who cannot provide the information. It requires a serious, responsible, and capable capacity on the part of the people seeking the information. Such was not the case with the American POWs tortured in North Viet Nam who, when they were asked how aircraft carriers managed to stay on station, gave information that was widely available: that regular resupply ships, combined with refrigeration, made it feasible. Their torturers didn’t believe them, and increased the torture until the POWs “admitted” that large spaces belowdecks were given over to the keeping of livestock.

This would be below farce if it had not actually happened.

Are the criteria I’ve given open to abuse? Well, yes. So are all laws of war. Whether the bombing of cities was justified in WWII is still debated. It’s worth looking at the reasons given at the time, even if they were rejected then. But we have to look at all sides: it’s almost certain that Hiroshima and Nagasaki saved more civilian lives in Japan than they took; malnutrition was widespread and starvation not that far off for many Japanses at the time. And it certainly saved the lives of many Japanese soldiers. As bad as things were on Iwo and Okinowa, Japan still lost more soldiers than America.

njcommuter on April 30, 2009 at 9:54 PM

Which is really the question we’re all struggling with.

“Struggling with”? Hardly. You’ve come on here casting moral judgement on all who “support torture” with a very broad brush. Spare us the illusion that you have any internal struggle going on.

I wish I did. But if torture was so effective, so necessary, why did we need to waterboard KSM 183 times in one month. If it works, hell, why stop at KSM? Why not do it all the time? That’s the logic of the pro-torture argument.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:44 PM

I think most people on here are already been clear on this (see turtlers excellent posts). That waterboarding has it proper place in a wide variety of interogation techniques. It is a harsh method that is reserved for very rare cases when others haven’ worked obviously having only been used on 3 people it’s not very widely used. And I think your citing of 183 times is uninformed as a single session of watterboarding would be tallied as several “times” so the 183 number falsly exagerates how much it is actually used.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:56 PM

Raised Lutheran, but now nondenominational Christian, and I have no problem with waterboarding.

I don’t know where exactly “turn the cheek” fits in to interrogation techniques, but I’ve tended to believe it applies to situations other than those involving life and death and especially the defense of the life of others.

In the end, f*** the spines of jelly in this country: we wanted these people on our walls, we needed these people on our walls.

Think if we’d had Al Gore in office.

BuckeyeSam on April 30, 2009 at 9:56 PM

kingsjester

You can use that tactic to justify anything. It’s a silly logical fallacy (a false dilemma). There’s actually an interesting and (for once) quite well written wikipedia entry on this titled the “Ticking time bomb scenario.” Maybe you should read it?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:57 PM

Dear Scrappy and Jim,

As a Catholic, I support the right of atheists to approve waterboarding of terrorists to save American lives.

We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 9:49 PM

I’m with ya.

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 9:57 PM

This discussion is very interesting…………….

…………. but Water-boarding is not torture.

Seven Percent Solution on April 30, 2009 at 9:59 PM

Cindy Munford on April 30, 2009 at 9:50 PM

Are you at that point yet where Santa brings you surprise Christmas gifts every day? If not, the day shall come. If so, what did you get today?

Today, I got a serving spoon that looks exactly like one I lost over a year ago. Santa is sooooo good to me!

(Just wish he’s stop wrapping so many of my gifts in cobwebs.)

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:00 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 9:57 PM

If you would rather lose American lives than use “enhanced interrogation” on a terrorist, just say so. And Wikipedia is not that impressive a source.

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 10:01 PM

turtlers excellent posts

Yes, they were excellent posts.

You’ve come on here casting moral judgement on all who “support torture” with a very broad brush. Spare us the illusion that you have any internal struggle going on.

Excuse me for saying so, but it’s a bit rich, making the “moral judgement” criticism on this blog, of all places. It is, after all, called “Hot Air” remember. what do you think generates all that hot air? Physician, heal thyself!

Alright, tell me this. Where do you draw the line? If waterboarding is only to be used in “very rare cases when others haven’ worked obviously,” then why not? If it’s so effective, why not use it all the time. It’s not torture, according to your argument, so what’s the problem?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:05 PM

Seven Percent Solution on April 30, 2009 at 9:59 PM
…………. but Water-boarding is not torture.

We’ve already dealt with that!

But some people are being obstinate.

In your case, I’m thankful that you can be so obstinate.

Because it’s for a good cause.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:06 PM

If you would rather lose American lives than use “enhanced interrogation” on a terrorist, just say so. And Wikipedia is not that impressive a source.

No, but it’s a great starting point. Use it to look up “logical fallacies.” See the one about false dilemmas? What does it say?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:06 PM

Why do liberals try to demonize and stigmatize 71% of the American public?

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:08 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:06 PM

Don’t deflect. Would you rather waterboard a terrorist or lose American lives? And if you don’t want to waterboard, how would you extract information?

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 10:09 PM

No, but it’s a great starting point. Use it to look up “logical fallacies.” See the one about false dilemmas? What does it say?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:06 PM

Your desire to live in a fantasy world is great reason to accuse your opponent of creating a false dilemma, but it’s not intellectual honesty.

thuja on April 30, 2009 at 10:12 PM

Why do liberals try to demonize and stigmatize 71% of the American public?
Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:08 PM

When Liberals find out that their opions aren’t those of the majority of Americans, they throw a hissy fit. Any thing they can think of constitutes a valid argument to them. Hence, all the Pee Wee Herman defenses, I know you are, but what am I?, we see on HotAir.

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 10:14 PM

Would you rather waterboard a terrorist or lose American lives?

IT’S A FALSE DILEMMA! Sorry for yelling, but it’s frustrating when people don’t listen. Why is this a logical fallacy? You’re asking me to choose between two options when there is at least one other option available. That other option is effective interrogation that doesn’t involve waterboarding or any form of torture. Ask any detective or military investigator. How do they extract information from suspects? Torture? I think not.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:14 PM

And we thought Rev Wright was a loon….

AprilOrit on April 30, 2009 at 10:15 PM

thuja

I have no desire to live in a fantasy world. Believe me. I do desire to live in a world in which my country obeys the law, thereby proving itself worthy of all of the well-deserved plaudits we heap upon it.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:16 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:14 PM

Like thuja said, you are not being intellectually honest. By the way, thuja, thank you. This is one thing we can agree on. Fins, you simply do not wish to answer the question. Waterboarding is not torture. This is a political expediency being used by Obama to divert attention from other issues and appease the Far Left. Go collect your money from Axelrod. You’ve dominated the thread enough.

kingsjester on April 30, 2009 at 10:22 PM

Ask any detective or military investigator. How do they extract information from suspects? Torture? I think not.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:14 PM

What success rates when dealing with islamic fighters when you compare traditional methods v. enhanced extreme methods?

Jamson64 on April 30, 2009 at 10:22 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:16 PM

Compare and contrast your desired world versus Billy Clinton.

viking01 on April 30, 2009 at 10:22 PM

jgapinoy and Religious_Zealot kind of already made this point, but turning the other cheek is about an individual acting humbly, not about said individual putting some scumbag’s life ahead of millions of the individual’s countrymen he should be protecting.

OneGyT on April 30, 2009 at 10:22 PM

This is why AP is no longer a Christian. Because he doesn’t know what being Christian means. Plus this isn’t torture for torture’s sake. People aren’t sadistic. If we can get information to save lives, torture should be appropriate.

And interestingly enough, AP looks to the Catholic ‘Cathecism’ for support as though it means something to most of the American Christians in this poll. Yeah, I said CHRISTIANS. . . not ‘evangelicals’.

There is NO WAY TO ACT CHRISTIAN. Christians are everyone, they are every where, they are all types, they do all sorts of things. To be a Christian means you believe that Christ is Messiah. Jews understand what that means more than MOST Christians. I imagine AP’s upbringing in the Catholic Church didn’t emphasize that over the importance of the ‘Catechisms’ (stuff made up by people). What the pope or any priest says is not important to Christianity. They interpret the Bible (Gospel and Old Testament along with Paul’s letters to the early church) just like anyone else.

I’m a little embarrassed for AP here because I know he fancies himself somewhat an intellectual (all atheists do. . . they can’t imagine that there is something that can’t be known). Using this as an example that Christians are bad people is either disingenuous, ignorant, or an attempt to get attention (like Meghan McCain).

Go ahead AP. Show us your knowledge of Christianity by putting out polls and quoting ‘cathecisms’. Seriously dude, read something, think critically. . . this ‘intellectual exercise’ should be beneath you. Or maybe I’m just giving you WAY too much credit.

ThackerAgency on April 30, 2009 at 10:23 PM

Ask any detective or military investigator. How do they extract information from suspects? Torture? I think not.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:14 PM

What are the success rates when dealing with islamic fighters when you compare traditional methods v. enhanced extreme methods?

Jamson64 on April 30, 2009 at 10:23 PM

If liberals believe the form of waterboarding done at Guitmo was torture, and individuals who support or enable torture are guilty of war crimes, then liberals must want to put 71% of the American people on trial in Spain.

Dies this seem unfair? I’m just making a liberal use of logic.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:24 PM

You’ve dominated the thread enough.

Is this your blog?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:26 PM

The Bible is full of the holy Rabbi Jesus teaching COMMON SENSE behavior. I grew up believing that America was the “chosen” country of GOD. Now, at an older age, I am unsure of such things. All I know for sure are: 1) I love love love America and would die for her 2) America is being run by a radical thug (just telling truth) and he must be stopped at any cost 3) conservatives need to bolster each other, stay positive, pray and overcome. 9/12/09

Ris4victory on April 30, 2009 at 10:27 PM

I have no desire to live in a fantasy world. Believe me. I do desire to live in a world in which my country obeys the law, thereby proving itself worthy of all of the well-deserved plaudits we heap upon it.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:16 PM

A lack of desire to live in a fantasy world would be to honestly answer kingjester’s questions rather than pretending the dilemmas he confronts you with don’t exist.

I utterly disagree with your idea it is a worthwhile desire to “desire to live in a world in which my country obeys the law, thereby proving itself worthy of all of the well-deserved plaudits we heap upon it.” I don’t see how a bunch of treaties less than 65 years old prove the moral worth of a nation. I would argue America was great in 1845 for the opportunities it provided many people despite the fact it was committing genocide against the native Americans and enslaving people based on skin color. I’m glad we aren’t enslaving or committing genocide against the relatively innocent anymore, but even with the backdrop of such evils, we were still morally great. I hardly see how a little waterboarding of three very evil persons counts for anything.

thuja on April 30, 2009 at 10:28 PM

extreme methods

We can’t answer that question. We don’t have data to answer it either way. Unless you can’t point me to a source. We can try and follow the law. Besides, what makes waterboarding “extreme”?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:28 PM

Update: Another un-Christian result: Catholics support Notre Dame’s invitation to Obama, 50/28.

AP, that’s priceless.

AprilOrit on April 30, 2009 at 10:29 PM

I would argue America was great in 1845 for the opportunities it provided many people despite the fact it was committing genocide against the native Americans and enslaving people based on skin color.

Interesting you separate out “people” from “native Americans” and black slaves. Weren’t they “people” too? Because if they were, please tell me how their “opportunities” were being provided for by Manifest Destiny.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:31 PM

honestly answer kingjester’s questions

Kingsjester’s question is, appropriately enough given his name, foolish. It presupposes only two options. Waterboarding or the death of Americans. I’m answering his implied question by suggesting that methods of interrogation exist that don’t stray into the legal definitions of torture. But he’s so fixated on the need for torture he can’t see any alternative. Which is exactly why torture is dangerous.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:33 PM

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:28 PM

If it is torture it must be extreme.

Seems you were the one stating that it did not work yet you do not have the numbers. I think you are bullshitting.

Here are YOUR WORDS:

of course you conveniently forget that confessions from torture rarely produce useful intelligence, that there are other more effective methods of interrogation, and that squandering our moral authority in the fight against terror produces greater negatives in the long

Jamson64 on April 30, 2009 at 10:36 PM

Fins – what are those alternative methods that are successful?

Ris4victory on April 30, 2009 at 10:37 PM

Excuse me for saying so, but it’s a bit rich, making the “moral judgement” criticism on this blog, of all places. It is, after all, called “Hot Air” remember. what do you think generates all that hot air? Physician, heal thyself!<

Nice attempt to deflect. Go back to what I was responding to. It was you making the illusion that you were “struggling with” something when in fact you were trying to shame everyone here as “supporting torture”

Alright, tell me this. Where do you draw the line? If waterboarding is only to be used in “very rare cases when others haven’ worked obviously,” then why not? If it’s so effective, why not use it all the time. It’s not torture, according to your argument, so what’s the problem?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:05 PM

This tired “point” you are trying to make has been addressed several times by several people. You choose to ignore the responses so that you can keep saying the same balony. You go on about false arguments and silly hypotheticals but propose the most ridiculous ones.

And to quote you:

Sorry for yelling, but it’s frustrating when people don’t listen.

You should take your own advice and listen.

Oh, and still waiting on your alternative methods….. how many times do we have to ask you?

Scrappy on April 30, 2009 at 10:37 PM

Dear Turtler, Scrappy, Religious_Zealot, thuja, njcommuter and others:

Thanks for your thoughtful and helpful posts in this difficult thread. Turlter and Scrappy in particular for your many contributions. It’s so good to see people of different backgrounds working together for the greater common good.

And now, I must leave my computer for a while in order to break one of Joe Biden’s recommendations for surviving the flu pandemic. I must… ah… go in confined place.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:38 PM

Oh, and still waiting on your alternative methods….. how many times do we have to ask you?

Interrogation without torture. How many times do i have to answer?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:40 PM

Interrogation without torture. How many times do i have to answer?

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:40 PM

In other words you have not a clue

Jamson64 on April 30, 2009 at 10:42 PM

Interesting you separate out “people” from “native Americans” and black slaves. Weren’t they “people” too? Because if they were, please tell me how their “opportunities” were being provided for by Manifest Destiny.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:31 PM

Oh, you are so cool. You accuse me of racism!! That’s so precious. Even as I was typing my answer, I was wondering if you’d take the cheap shot, the mindless, gutter thought. And you did! And I’m not surprised!

But while you are enjoying your orgy of anti-racist moral righteousness, could you tell me where in 1845, you would have found a less racist society? Could you point me to a country that treated Jews better? Could you point me to a country besides possibly the UK where people were treating each other better?

thuja on April 30, 2009 at 10:43 PM

Fins you do not know about which you speak and you admit that your stance is not based on research….facts is facts

Jamson64 on April 30, 2009 at 10:43 PM

you were trying to shame everyone here as “supporting torture”

Most posters here do support torture. I don’t think that’s open for debate. Read the many threads on this topic over the past two weeks and I think you’ll agree, the overwhelming sentiment is, ‘good, I’m glad we did it’. A few brave souls (Turtler springs to mind) try and parse the circumstances to justify their support of waterboarding in ‘certain,’ ‘rare’, ‘not to be used lightly’ situations (quite what those are is never explained without recourse to the inane ’24′-inspired fantasy of the ‘Ticking Bomb’), but most aren’t quite so, er, nuanced.

Grow Fins on April 30, 2009 at 10:47 PM

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 10:00 PM

I tend to get a lot of eye glasses.

Cindy Munford on April 30, 2009 at 10:47 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4