Your Torture In America Update

« December 2007 »

In case you're wondering what happened to the Spastic Topic Monkey, it turns out authorities are holding him in a black site prison because he ended up on a no-fly list by mistake. The good news is, he's being treated humanely. The bad news is, it's only because the government hasn't gotten their Fisher Price My Size Waterboarding Kit yet. In honor of his predicament, today is Spastic Tortured Monkey Friday!

It's been a busy couple of weeks in America's new role as Torturer, And Proud Of It. Now, I'm not naive enough to think that Dick Cheney invented American torture. But I do think that they invented torture as defendable, official policy. That this hideous shit has been normalized to the point where people can defend it and not be laughed off the national stage should really be bothering more people than it is.

For example, it should be bothering Nancy Pelosi, Jay Rockefeller, and Jane Harman, who, it turns out, have known we were waterboarding people since 2003. And, depending on reports, they either approved, failed to disapprove, or failed to disapprove besides sending a secret letter to the torture people saying that maybe they shouldn't torture.

Now, I'm not going to sit here and claim that this makes the Democrats as bad as the Bush administration when it comes to flagrant abuse of the Constitution and American ideals and basic human decency. But there's a hell of a gap between "better than Bush" and GOOD ENOUGH. And whatever the reason, their collective inaction then was doubly craven. Because not only was it a failure to stop it THEN, but the revelation of that failure undercuts efforts to stop it NOW. What was that Burke quote? All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing? Well, we don't even have good men, so it's no wonder evil has been such a fucking growth industry this decade.

And speaking of evil, what the fuck must have been on those CIA tapes that getting busted for destroying them was preferable to getting busted for whatever was recorded on them? Of course, in their minds, some underling at the CIA can take the fall for the tape destruction, while the people in charge of the policy that dictated the acts that were ON the tapes skate one more time in what's become the Ice Capades of perfidy.

And there is no greater example of the twisted logic that rules in the psyches of these bastards than Tony Blankley's interview with NPR. Blankley, who is usually paid to say stupid shit by the Washington Times, who approves wholeheartedly of the CIA's illegal destruction of criminal evidence. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"All I could imagine was that video being leaked to Al-Jazeera and from there to YouTube and from there to the minds of hundreds of millions of Muslims around the world... actual waterboarding would instill more passion in the Islamic world than the still pictures of Abu Grahib prison. It would have constituted a catastrophic propaganda defeat for us that would make it yet harder to begin the long process of winning the hearts and minds of currently non-violent Muslims. ... A necessary early step is convincing the Muslim world that we are not their enemy. How could the release of such an inflammatory video help with that vital effort?

That's not an argument for destroying the tapes of us torturing people. It's an argument for NOT FUCKING TORTURING PEOPLE! We're told time and time again by these fucks that our civilization is fighting for its very existence, that winning this war on terror is the most important thing ever. Yet when deciding on a course of action that, if discovered, would cause an epic-level setback in that very fight, they go ahead and do it anyway and just hope that nobody finds out how bad it really was. GENIUSES.

Never mind that it's inhuman, unethical, and proven to be ineffective. Beyond that, even the crazy people seem to realize it's awful strategy. But the tapes got destroyed, so everything's hunky-dory to Blankley! As long as the Muslim world is somehow fooled by this into thinking we're not their enemy. I'm not sure that's something we can count on, since most of the ones we've bombed are pretty sure we're their enemies, and if we haven't bombed them, then odds are they still have working eyes and ears.