Bush Era Torturing of Terrorist Suspects
People are still complaining about Bush Era torture of terror suspects. At this point, we know they did things that were wrong and probably illegal. The current administration needs to either bring them to trial or drop it. It's one of those "… or get off the pot" things. You can read an ABC News article about it here: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/WireStory?id=8387717&page=1
Arguments Against Torture
Most complaints about torture fall into four areas: it violates international law; it violates our own laws, if we do it to them, they will do it to our people, it's just not nice. I'll ignore the "not nice" argument on the grounds that it's a stupid argument when discussing conflict between nations.
There are international treaties that say all of us civilized people won't do torture when engaged in whole sale slaughter of each other. This is all very pleasant and, if we're going to play the civilization game we have to play by all the rules.
We definitely want our government adhering to our own laws or they may decide to turn on us. If they are going to be bastards, it is important that they be our bastards and do our bidding. If they start torturing us we have to go through that nasty revolution thing.
The last argument, the "if we do, they do" is also a bit stupid. This really only applies if we are at war with another Civilized Nation. The little groups we're fighting these days don't play nice. Picture them saying, "It's ok to blow up this bus full of the orphans of nuns but we don't dare harm one of their soldiers." Put into that context, the whole argument falls apart.
Why I'm not in Charge
Of course, things would be different if LibertyBob were in charge. The whole world would understand that if I have a need to assume a defensive posture it would definitely be an offensive defense. My rules would be very clear. If you're friendly, I'm friendly. If you're neutral, I'm neutral. If you are hostile, I'm death incarnate.
If I were in charge, there would be none of these pansy complaints about torture. The complaints would come instead from Hitler and Stalin era torturers who would say things like, "That's horrible! How could you do such things? I'll never sleep again." The energies radiating from any area I used for torture would cause uneasy feelings for millennia afterward.
Would that still violate international treaties? Probably, but both friendly and neutral countries would look away and say, "Don't worry; it will all be over soon." France would have to make a snide remark or two, but they would leave it at that.
Would it still violate our internal laws? Not if I'm in charge, because emperors get to do stuff.
What about the argument that if we do it they will do it? That's easy enough to answer. Whatever it is they are doing they won't be doing it long. As described in repeated pieces on this site, though I am inclines to peaceful coexistence, once hostility starts I believe in ending it immediately through the incapacitation of the enemy. It's hard to torture my soldiers if you aren't breathing.
Why the Apparent Dichotomy
You may be asking why I would be opposed to Bush era torture if I think torture can be put to good use. That's easy to understand; I'm only ok with it if I'm in charge. I trust me to use these tools as I see fit. I do not trust others to use these tools as I see fit. The Bush administration did a lot of things I didn't like or agree with. Many things they said gave me cause for concern. I'm not comfortable with them having extraordinary power. In contrast, I'm all kinds of OK with me having the power.
Those of you who have been regular readers since 2002 know my political views. That's why most of you vote for me when you can. It is appreciated. Just remember that I'm here to keep you safe and prosperous, as long as you don't oppose me. So the next time you are in the voting booth, ask who would LibertyBob torture?