Monday, April 27, 2009

Guess Who?

I'll be honest. I hoped some people would agree with my post Torture: Should We Just Ignore It And Move On?, but here is someone I never expected:

'War crimes will be prosecuted, war criminals will be punished and it will be no defense to say, "I was just following orders."'
Source: CNN


  1. As a disclaimer, I don't agree that water boarding is torture or that it shouldn't be done to acquire information.

    That being said, even if I agreed with you I think the bulk of Americans with U6 nearing 20%, asset values halved, and countless other risks (swine flu, terrorism, hurricane season, etc...), don't really have the effort or sympathy to have any concern for the well being of a man who planned 9/11.

    Nonetheless, I really enjoy your posts and find the graphs not only useful, but entertaining.

  2. ZachA... I always appreciate hearing from people with differing opinions.

    Thanks for the post.

  3. and for the record. i personally don't give a sh&t about the torturing of a guy who planned 9-11, but in my opinion you can't have what i feel is torture available for select cases. that is not (in my opinion) how a democracy works. a democracy (in theory) means all humans have the same rights.

    thus, i am saddened that making the case that "this time was different" opens up the opportunity to open up those "different times" to more and more people and more and more situations...

  4. ZachA

    If water boarding isn't torture what do you think it is? It seems to be torture by definition. If it wasn't torture why would it make people give up information?

    This is an interesting article that might change your mind.

    I didn't know how bad it was until I read up on it myself.

    Your point that 'it shouldn't be done' to acquire information is a separate one. But water boarding is clearly torture.

    If as a society we choose to torture people we should be honest about what we are doing. Let's not hide behind semantics.

  5. Defining what constituted sex during the Clinton years was a lot more fun than defining torture during the Bush years.

    Can we have more blow jobs and fewer waterboards please?

  6. It's called "waterboarding", instead of it's old name "water torture", or the more accurate name, "partial drowning", for the same reason that the Nazi's called it "enhanced interrogation" - to obfuscate that which it really is.

    During "waterboarding" (more accurately, "partial drowning"), water is forced up the nose, and down into the windpipe and lungs. If you do it correctly, the victim lives, though as you repeat the procedure, he may wonder if that's really a blessing.

    Of course, if you do it incorrectly, the victim dies.

    He also runs the risk of dying after repeated attacks like this, as his lungs increasingly fill with fluid that his body is unable to adequately expel. This can lead to pneumonia and death, or permanent scarring of the lungs, impairing health for the rest of his life.

    But hey, no bruising, so you can't get sympathetic pictures.

    Similarly, if you slam someone's head into a wall, even a flexible one, so hard that you need to protect the neck against whiplash, you're inflicting a mild concussion. Do it correctly, and the victim lives, albeit with a strong headache. Do it incorrectly, and they die, either from a hemorrhage, or from the brain swelling from the repeated beatings. But regardless, repeated concussions often can cause severe brain damage.

    But hey, no bruising, so you don't get any good pictures.

    Likewise, sleep deprivation of 10 days or more won't leave bruises, but can cause either temporary or even permanent psychosis, and has been known to cause death. And remember, the enforcement mechanism for wakefulness is primarily mild beatings by the guards, in addition to exposure to noise that causes what is in some cases permanent hearing loss.

    But as long as there's no bruising, apparently that's ok.

    Look it in the face before you hug it - it's your policy, after all.