Heart-ache: 34% say civil liberties restrictions ok, 25% say not restricted enough

This is where Hewitt should have gone after Sully. He did, sort of, at the end of the interview when he pressed him about doubt, a subject Sullivan makes much of to distinguish his own worldview from the alleged moral certitude with which “Christianists” supposedly see the world.

Hewitt might have asked him, “Do you doubt that America’s ‘soul’ looks more like yours than mine?”

Because if he doesn’t, maybe he should start.

Full poll results here. Consider my gob duly smacked:


In other heart-ache news, Cheney obliquely admitted yesterday for the first time that the U.S. is waterboarding terrorists. From the WH transcript:

Q Would you agree a dunk in water is a no-brainer if it can save lives?

THE VICE PRESIDENT: It’s a no-brainer for me, but for a while there, I was criticized as being the Vice President “for torture.” We don’t torture. That’s not what we’re involved in. We live up to our obligations in international treaties that we’re party to and so forth. But the fact is, you can have a fairly robust interrogation program without torture, and we need to be able to do that.

Question for our three liberal readers. Given all the political trouble “torture” has caused the administration, why do you suppose Bush is so intent upon it? The left maintains a quasi-religious belief, despite the evidence to the contrary, that waterboarding cannot, under any circumstances, produce useful information, so that theory’s out. Which leaves us with three possibilities:

1. He’s a cartoonishly fiendish sadist who gets off on torturing people, even though he doesn’t actually take part in it and isn’t there to watch when it happens.

2. He doesn’t care about torture, he cares about aggrandizing his own executive authority and this is the issue he’s chosen to make it happen. Now that he’s got all this super-important power to belly-slap people — assuming he does, which is unclear — then … what? What’s he planning to do with it? Labor camps for MoveOn.org donors replete with mass belly-slappings?

3. He doesn’t care about torture or executive authority, he cares about keeping Republicans in power and this is an issue he can demagogue to that end. Uh, okay, but in that case, is this really his best issue? Wouldn’t a hard line on, say, immigration make his base happier than belly slaps? Or, for the hawks, a more streamlined, muscular DHS?

Any ideas? Honora? Anyone? Bueller?

Update: Seixon surveys the nutroots for an answer. Looks like the first theory is the leading one, which is what I would have guessed. You’ll rarely go wrong assuming that the left is assuming the worst about you.