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Radically Inept
Monday, June 07, 2004
  The sadists are in charge

Actually, I started this at Billmon, but I think the dove tail works better in reverse order this time.
This is all in reference to a WSJ report, which seems to have been available w/o subscription in the googlesphere, but I can't seem to find a working link to it. [8:09 am. Thanks to Steve for providing a good link: Infoshop News - Pentagon Report Set Framework For Use of Torture] Regardless, it shows a 'desire' on the part of our administration to use torture.

I think that is sort of what is missed by Billmon and Phil. They address more the legality, and I think we really need to focus on the intent.

The thing is, how have people been put in to power, acquired power or been voted power, start w/ the premise that torture will be needed? There's something, truly wrong w/ a culture that starts from the premise of torture. I can't begin to offer a comprehensive ethical argument against torture in the space I'm allocating to this, but any person, who starts w/ the premise of 'we need to be able to torture', pulled the legs off Grand-Daddy Long Legs when they were children and probably tortured the cat next door. I think there terms for this kind of tendency, which include psychopath and sociopath. The sadists are in charge.

Still, I guess it's better to have strong willed leadership, willing to do anything and break any law or ethic to achieve their stated goal of relieving Saddam of his non-existant WMD, and saving me from some guy named bin Laden. I think he owns a construction company in Saudi Arabia, and was at a meeting w/ Papa Bush in DC on 9/11. I think.

Anyway, here's Phil's analysis, INTEL DUMP - Archives 2004-06-08 - 2004-06-14:
"Analysis: Normally, I would say that there is a fine line separating legal advice on how to stay within the law, and legal advice on how to avoid prosecution for breaking the law. DoD and DoJ lawyers often provide this first kind of sensitive legal advice to top decisionmakers in the Executive Branch (regardless of administration) who want to affirm the legality of their actions. Often times, memoranda on these topics can be seen both ways, depending on your perspective. I tend to think that the Yoo memorandum and Gonzales memorandum leaned more heavily towards providing advice about how to stay (barely) within the bounds of the law - not how to break the law and get away with it. But this DoD memo appears to be quite the opposite. It is, quite literally, a cookbook approach for illegal government conduct. This memorandum lays out the substantive law on torture and how to avoid it. It then goes on to discuss the procedural mechanisms with which torture is normally prosecuted, and techniques for avoiding those traps. I have not seen the text of the memo, but from this report, it does not appear that it advises American personnel to comply with international or domestic law. It merely tells them how to avoid it. That is dangerous legal advice."


And then at Whiskey Bar: Presidential Powers:
"I don't ordinarily go in for paranoid conspiracy theories, but thinking about the political implications of the legal castle the Bush administration has constructed for itself - and the possible consequences of being evicted from that fortress, I can't help but be reminded of ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern's recent warning:
The key question for the next five months, then, becomes how far the administration will go. An elevated threat level justifying martial law and postponement of the election? No doubt such suggestions will seem too alarmist to those trusting that there is a moral line, somewhere, that the president and his senior advisers would not cross. I regret very much to note that their behavior over the past three years leaves me doubtful that there is such a line.
Raving paranoia? Go back and read that bit about 'authority to set aside the laws is inherent in the president.' You just might be hearing more about that, one of these days."
Yet another song to express my thoughts, "For What It's Worth", Buffalo Springfield.

On the bright side, Reagan died. But, this brings to mind a very serious health issue, does Baby Bush have Alzheimer's? I mean, he's forgotten why we went to war in Iraq, he's forgotten completely about Osama, obviously doesn't remember a single campaign promise...I think he's got Alzheimer's too. If he's lucky, maybe he'll die before it manifests itself like it did w/ Reagan. We should all pray that Baby Bush dies so we won't have to watch him drool like a baby in diapers, though I don't know that I would particularily [it's the way I say it] notice a difference.

Maybe the people at the G8 Summit will be able to provide intervention. Doubt it, though. I mean Putin? He's pretty far down some road, and I doubt it leads to democracy. Maybe he's lost the map?


The guy in the DiTech commercials is a better actor than Reagan. It's painful to watch Reagan in most of his performances, though not all. Some are just irritating. 
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GEORGE W. BUSH - TOUGH ENOUGH TO TORTURE CHILDREN
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