We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Tuesday, February 5. 2013
Texas Versus California: A Story Of Welfare States.
Grade disparities favoring girls start in kindergarten, and they have profound, long-term effects that can last a lifetime
Department of Homeland Stupidity: Huddle like Sheep and Die
Dino: Life of Julia
Against black history month
Can Robert Menendez survive?
Obama, build a lasting urban legacy - An ambitious proposal for the President’s second term: Create a new federal Department of Cities
America’s Creeping New Normalcy - Sluggish growth and high unemployment are increasingly just accepted.
Another Disaster… Obama’s $5 Billion Electric Car Dream Bankrupt and in Shambles
Panetta Confirms Again That Waterboarding Helped Get Bid Laden; Media Still Confused
They Kill Because They Like It - Turkey’s Marxist terrorists strike again—this time, against America
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Well I am glad John Daly takes the word of the former CIA chief at face value. It must be his move to the throne of the DOD that adds credibility?
Call me naive but I am skeptical.
I wonder if the tapes, if they still exist, will be declassified before my great great great grandchildren take their first history class?
Well, the bacon is in the pan I can smell it. I think I will go with grapefruit juice this morning although my instinctive ideological beliefs are telling me go with V-8 with an extra pinch of horseradish. I do need to make it from my den to the kitchen so you never know by the time I get there I may go completely off the reservation and go with orange.
Paul Mirengoff: Against black history month ... February is Black History Month, as everyone with school-age children must know. Charles Cooke at NRO makes a strong case against having such a month.
Charles C. W. Cooke: Against black history month ... “You’re going to relegate my history to a month?” asked Freeman, visibly annoyed. “Which month is Jewish History Month?”
That would be in May, as signed into law by George W. Bush in 2006.
There's also National Women's History month in March, Irish-American Heritage Month also in March, National Hispanic Heritage Month in September and October, National American Indian Heritage Month in November, among others. There's also lots of heritage weeks, annual war reenactments, birthday celebrations of famous leaders. People like commemorations apparently.
Paul Mirengoff: I don’t believe that slavery and its aftermath are the central facts of American history.
What? Of course it's a central fact of American history. The argument over slavery almost prevented the adoption of the Constitution. The institution of slavery was "the greatest material interest" of the South. Slavery made cotton king.
The continued existence of slavery led to secession and a Civil War that nearly destroyed the nascent Republic. That was followed by generations of oppression for millions of people in the South. And that led to a largely peaceful civil rights movement that inspired the world.
The mixing of cultures also led to new musical forms and the peculiarities of the American language.
The "huddle and wait to die" strategy is completely wrong.
If a shooter is in the building - run like hell. Get outside and look for cover.
Shooting somebody under the desk is easy. Hitting a running person is very hard.
John Daly: Panetta Confirms Again That Waterboarding Helped Get Bid Laden; Media Still Confused
It was enhanced interrogation short of waterboarding. That's according to Jose Rodriguez, who set up the CIA's "enhanced interrogation" program.
Yes, people under torture will tell the truth. They will also tell lies or anything else you want to hear. And sometimes this information can be used. Just ask Saddam. On the other hand, the information may have been obtainable without torture. In any case, the regime of torture never resulted in the discovery of bin Laden.
Of course, Iraqi mothers already knew that the U.S. was abusing prisoners. It was only the American public that was apparently in the dark.
More important, the use of torture undermined whatever claim to the moral high ground the U.S. had. Who would have thought the Americans were so afraid that they would abandon their most fundamental principles.
And fairness today requires us to address the serious educational deficits of boys and young men. The rise of women, however long overdue, does not require the fall of men.
Boy howdy did the article (and the money quote) on female vs male achievement in primary school hit the nail on the head. The weird thing is that it's been known for years that girls are favored over boys in educational settings, but it has been ignored. About time somebody studied it and made it a formal evaluation proving the assumption to be correct.
The waterboarding the terrorists endured was about the same as the waterboarding all U.S. special forces endure as part of their training. Was it torture? surely it was not fun but torture? Are we really torturing all our special forces people? Three terrorists were waterboarded by the CIA and the information they gave us was a treasure trove that prevented a couple dozen major attacks on the West and also resulted in the capture or killing of numerous high value terrorists. Was this common training technique conducted in the presence of a doctor with life saving equipment at the ready worth it??? Well only if you don't side with the terrorists.
You're right on the money with your comments for once (just kidding around Zach), but I would posit that the main culprit that caused secession and thus the Civil War was States vs Federal Rights. When the rather loose Articles of Confederation of the original thirteen states didn't satisfy the Founders who wanted a more central government, they formed a body called the Constitutional Convention and wrote the Constitution in secret without the knowledge of Jefferson, Henry and Calhoun who argued against overriding Federal authority when they found out. It was Calhoun, in fact, who came up with the idea of "nullification" in which a state had the right to "nullify" any Federal edict that it did not agree with. That failed which led to secession and the Civil War. This whole states rights issue also led to the adoption of the Bill of Rights.
Now was slavery a part of the states rights issue? Yes, but it wasn't the sole reason for the Civil War.
Interesting factoid a lot of people don't know. There were originally twelve amendments in the Bill of Rights, two were pending, one (The Twenty Seventh Amendment) was finally adopted in 1972 (Congressional Pay). The other, the Congressional Apportionment Amendment passed in 1789 has never been adopted by the states. 11 states (I think, it may be more now) have passed it to date.
A federal department of cities? That should work out as well as the dept of education. Nothing like a "head start" program to get them up to snuff. Cities are slowly dying, let them go. They no longer have a function as a center for manufacturing. Even manufacturers are leaving the big cities. This is a slow transition from hands on manufacturing to robotics and 3d printing. Cities are becoming the warehouses for those who can not make the transition to the information age and are self imposing themselves into concentration camps for non-competitors. Even Rahm has figured out you can't control the 3rd world in a city and without constantly shoveling money into their hands. Cities and those who live in them are not sustainable. Hurricanes were a good excuse to pump billions into N.O. and now the northeast cities. Let the cities go.
On Sunday, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta confirmed what many have believed since the death of Osama Bin Laden: Our waterboarding of top Al Qaeda operatives in the wake of 9/11 ultimately led to the whereabouts and killing of the terrorist mastermind.
I don't understand the libtatarded effete handwringing over waterboarding. its not like we're waterboarding the chamber of commerce. the only people getting waterboarded are those who deserve to get waterboarded. and they're foreigners anyway.
Tom Francis: I would posit that the main culprit that caused secession and thus the Civil War was States vs Federal Rights.
Thank you for your respectful disagreement. In their own words:
It was about slavery.
Mississippi Declaration of Causes of Secession: Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery.
Texas created perversion of the original Declaration of Independence.
Texas Declaration of Causes of Secession: We hold as undeniable truths that the governments of the various States, and of the confederacy itself, were established exclusively by the white race, for themselves and their posterity; that the African race had no agency in their establishment; that they were rightfully held and regarded as an inferior and dependent race, and in that condition only could their existence in this country be rendered beneficial or tolerable.
It's about white supremacy.
Speech of Confederate Vice President Alexander H. Stephens: Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests upon the great truth, that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery—subordination to the superior race—is his natural and normal condition.
demoncraptic Sen. Calhoun called slavery a "positive good", a position his modern party still holds in a more treacherous way.
the reasons why the Civil War was fought are many. the initial causes were economic and political, but as the War continued, ending slavery became among the most important reasons, along with ending the rebellion, as clear by the several executive orders addressing slavery and, the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments and Reconstruction.
its entirely likely that Lincoln might have accepted a compromise solution, if any were still possible after his election, that would have preserved the Union without ending slavery.
The U.S. used methods that they have always claimed were torture when done by other countries. Stress positions, water torture, hypothermia, sleep deprivation, were used by the Inquisition. The methods were brutal enough that some detainees died. The CIA destroyed tapes of these interrogations because they knew how bad they were.
Keep in mind, you are granting power to the executive to torture without oversight. That means your current president, or any future president. That's not limited government.
wirraway: its entirely likely that Lincoln might have accepted a compromise solution, if any were still possible after his election, that would have preserved the Union without ending slavery.
The population and political power of the North was exploding, largely due to immigration, and the effort to prevent the spread of slavery into the new territories. Everyone knew that meant slavery would eventually be outlawed, by constitutional amendment if necessary. (The Georgia Declaration of Causes details this threat to the institution of slavery.)
For centuries, common understanding was that government of the people couldn't last, that only a powerful monarchy could ensure political stability. The United States was a new experiment "testing whether that nation, or any nation, so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure." Lincoln believed that everyone's freedom was bound up in the Union; the freedom of whites and the eventual freedom of blacks. If the Union fell, it would spell the end of the grand experiment.
Hence, the South seceded over slavery, while the North fought for Union.
TF, I always enjoy your factoids and, yes, I have learned today.
I personally object to Black History Month as it can be very divisive in a multi-cultural urban area where tensions already exist and the event is used to create a divide. Most non-Blacks and their families had nothing to do with slavery. I believe only 4 - 5% of the Southern population owned slaves -- those with huge plantations -- but the students in our local schools act like the "whities" are guilty still. It was a horrible part of our history, but creating violence and anger benefits no one.
Few know that Black free people also owned slaves, and some of the slaves were white. The Northern climate and soil was not suitable for large agriculture, but their citizens made fortunes from milling that Southern-raised cotton, building ships to transfer both products and slaves, and providing the financing for both.
Recently, the deWolf family of R.I. and their banking relationships in neighboring states have come under scrutiny for having run and financed 80% of the slave trade to the U.S., certainly not abandoning the cash cow when slavery was supposedly outlawed in 1807/8. PBS covered it in 2008 with "Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North".
As a freshmen in high school, we were told to review some of the twenty books our teacher kept at the back of the classroom, then write a paper on the reason(s) for the Civil War. Over half concluded slavery was the only reason, which the teacher later suggested was because they were assuming that from what they had heard prior to the assignment. Several of us came up with States vs. Federal Rights because, partially, we had heard and looked for the arguments about tariffs, the Northern bankers, the route for the expansion of the railroads to California and other squabbles amongst the states that really dealt with the Northern states trying to control Congress. Slavery became the "straw" so to speak. When the war started, Lincoln had no intention of freeing all the slaves, just those of the conquered South. It's nice to be altruistic about our leaders, but most politicians are still politicians.
Our teacher was trying to emphasize the importance of doing one's own research vs. believing another's view without thought. Unfortunately, I no longer see much of this at any level of education, which is one of the reason our media is useless and our schools turn out people repeating the dogma presented to them.
only if you imply constitutional or other rights necessarily apply outside the frontiers of the US. which you could do by law (e.g., some environmental regs for US bases overseas). I'm somewhat dismayed that the administration now has a bigger brief to kill citizens via drone strikes, and exercise of that expansion of the law of self defense deserves judicial oversight.
however, I don't care if the CIA or allied security forces grind foreign terrorists into hamburger, if that's an effective interrogation method. whatever works best. perhaps in some cases waterboarding is inefficient, then it should not be used. this isn't an ethical, but a practical question, and clearly not a venue for sadism.
but the other side of the coin is that the South would have stayed in the Union if another compromise could have been brokered because this is what it had done historically.
the issue here wasn't just slavery per se, but how slaves and new states were counted/admitted for congressional representation, hence, political power. the north and south made several compromises in the preceding decades over how slavery would expand into into western territories before the war to preserve at balance of power, at least in the senate.
so slavery is an umbrella term that covers a variety of issues that really concerns who will control national policy, the industrial north or the agrarian south. by '59, the country was out of compromises.
Few know that Black free people also owned slaves, and some of the slaves were white.
a claim that free blacks owned white slaves needs a source.
This, I think. The argument about how the power would balance was at the core, and didn't have to be about slavery per se; but having slavery in the mix made further compromise less and less likely.
It's interesting to read what soldiers who weren't higher profile politicians & other public figures gave as their reasons for fighting, and continuing to fight.* For combatants on both sides slavery ranges from the only reason to not important; as often as not slavery's just another issue, not the only issue.
But pretty often you encounter the opinion that, even if slavery isn't the only issue or not even one of the more important ones, without it the war probably wouldn't be happening. That's what a lot of people believed at the time, and I think they were right.
It's interesting (and tragic) how often you find a complete disconnect in motivations; two debaters unable to comprehend the other's starting point. Union sympathizers insisting on the primacy of the Union; Confederates confounded by the notion that the Union in and of itself was not only worth fighting to preserve as it was but worth invading the South to preserve. They were dancing along the edge of civil conflict on that point alone.
Last thing we need, a Federal Department of Cities. What bunkum - just another excuse to transfer the wealth to those that support the Democrats and weaken the rural (red) states. Cities are in States, and a DoC would be a direct constitutional infringement of States' rights.
U.S. Library of Congress: "A very small number of free blacks owned slaves. The slaves that most free blacks purchased were relatives whom they later manumitted. A few free blacks also owned slave holding plantations in Louisiana, Virginia, and South Carolina."
wirraway: but the other side of the coin is that the South would have stayed in the Union if another compromise could have been brokered because this is what it had done historically.
For a while perhaps, but demographics were strongly against the continuation of slavery. Seven states, seceded even before Lincoln was inaugurated, forcing the issue.
wirraway: by '59, the country was out of compromises.
yeah, but white slaves? not indentured servants, but slaves?
wirraway: only if you imply constitutional or other rights necessarily apply outside the frontiers of the US. which you could do by law (e.g., some environmental regs for US bases overseas).
Thought humans were endowed with unalienable rights. Sorry. Just something we must have read that somewhere or other.
wirraway: however, I don't care if the CIA or allied security forces grind foreign terrorists into hamburger, if that's an effective interrogation method.
Good for you.
Oops, misread the original question. Perhaps they are conflating slavery with indentured servitude.
It's not hard to find and it is historical fact that Free Blacks owned slaves. Right here in my adopted home state of South Carolina there were two very prominent Free Black slave owners - Justus Angel and Mistress L. Horry who lived in what was then Colleton District (now known as Colleton County) who each owned 90 slaves I believe, but I'd have to look that up. It is well known that in the incorporated part of Richland District (now Richland County) one of the more prominent members of society was a "High Yellow" (meaning that his skin tone was almost golden) Free Black named Michael Horry (probably related) who actually owned a cotton plantation, but you'd be hard pressed to prove it on the Internet because the only reference I've seen to him was during my tour of the Lexington County Historical Museum.
And here's another interesting factoid. The song "The Yellow Rose of Texas" is a homage to Emily D. West, an indentured servant who was one of the heros of the Texas Revolution. As you might guess, Emily D. West was a "High Yellow".
The whole issue of Black owning slaves is something that our current race war leadership does not like to acknowledge. Historians who want to be honest about this believe that up to 35% of Free Blacks of the period owned more than one slave and roughly 10-15% of Free Blacks owned large work gangs that they would hire out almost as migrant workers.
Before anybody jumps all over me for using the term "High Yellow" and calls me a freakin' racist, this was very common during the era as skin color was a method of social hierarchy both in the South and the North with Whites at the top, Black at the bottom and everything else in between. "High Yellow" blacks were considered to be largely White with a Black "in the wood pile" as the saying goes.
Now that I think about it, I should talk to BD about authoring an "Interesting Factoid" post every once in a while - kind of like the QQQ.
Yeah - I think I'll do that. I like interesting factoids.
I'm asking about white slaves, not about black slave owners. that claim needs a source.
everyone is entitled to due process or the protection of international conventions. but there's not much process due or protection given to stateless combatants out of uniform, hiding behind civilians when they're not murdering them. you go ahead and weep over what you think the lost rights of terrorists are.
wirraway: everyone is entitled to due process or the protection of international conventions. but there's not much process due or protection given to stateless combatants out of uniform, hiding behind civilians when they're not murdering them.
International conventions prohibit abuse of prisoners. If they committed crimes, they should be charged and punished under the law.
wirraway: you go ahead and weep over what you think the lost rights of terrorists are.
And an unaccountable executive is to make that determination? Many people that were tortured by the U.S. or its cronies were turned in by people who held a personal grudge, or by people who were tortured to name names. Many of these people were innocent, but were punished without due process. Not only does is this unjust, but it breeds resentment and undercuts whatever standing the U.S. had to a moral high ground.
Guess it depends on what kind of country to want to be.
Whoops - didn't read that right. Sorry.
There was a white slave trade - it was indentured servitude. In many cases, indentured servants never worked off their service to their Masters and thus stayed in service with no rights what so ever. I would assume that the wealthier Free Blacks in the North would have indentured servants and probably most of them were white, but I'll be damned if I could prove it.
We have to remember that while we can point to this and that as the cause of the Civil War (as this discussion has trampled over), slavery was certainly a factor - a large one. I read something a few years ago (can't remember the title of the book) that examined slavery from the point of view of a Northern factory worker. One of the major fears that the average worker in the North had was an influx of slave labor from the South - their more expensive labor could be replaced by the much cheaper labor of slaves.
In my old home town of Marblehead, MA, "contract" labor was a big deal in the two shipyards that existed during the colonial period. Contract labor was actually indentured service and there were a large number of Free Blacks who came North with the promise of a good job only to fall into indentured servitude at the shipyards. This was also true in Baltimore and Boston which were big centers of ship building at the time. Fredrick Douglas once worked as a slave caulking ship hulls in various Baltimore shipyards. His escape from slavery was facilitated by a Free Black sailor (which where very common) who gave Douglas his Certificate of Protection. Douglas dressed as a sailor, escaped to Philadelphia and then to New Bedford which at the time was a hot bed of abolitionist thought.
Another interesting factoid. The first Africans to come into the country came under indentured service contracts to white owners in Virginia around 1620. Dutch traders sold the service contracts to white principles. It wasn't until almost 1690 or there about that the Virginia Commonwealth declared indentured servants to be slaves and poof - we're off to the races.
if the CIA needed to put terrorist feet to the fire to get whoever to roll on bin Liner and you're losing sleep over it, you need a new hobby horse.
Protip: don't work for al-Qaeda and you won't be renditioned to a Saudi dungeon. and if you take up that line of work, Allah and the Marines are looking for a few good martyrs.
doubtful whether al-Qaeda operatives are or were ever covered by the Third Geneva Convention re POWS.
but you go ahead and keep rubbing your hands raw over them.
I'd say it depends more on what, or who, you're fighting. Idealism is a fine thing, no doubt, and many fine words have been written in support of same, including from our constitutional fathers.
But ask the Marines of Iwo, Okinawa, Saipan, the defenders of the Bulge, the men of the Frozen Chosin. Ask them when there moral high ground became untenable. When they decided to fight to win.
You're not a serious man, Zach, with your liberal preaching.
Does the constant reliving slavery and re-demonizing whites cause problems? Surely you read about the black man who killed three white women recently and said it was because of what their ancestors did to his ancestors. He learned this in a college course he took, no doubt paid for by hard working ancestors of slave owners. Wait! Maybe you didn't read about it or the current massive black on white violent crime because the media is hiding it. They hide it because they are afraid it might anger the public. Makes sense, when you divide the public and inflame racist beliefs bad things happen. But black history month stories will continue to be shown on TV in spite of the obvious negative results.
More whites were slaves in Africa then the total number of black slaves in America.
It is disingenuous to compare waterboarding that the U.S. used with waterboarding performed "as torture" by other nations. Waterboarding by the U.S. included a doctor and medical equipment to make sure no harm or unintended death occurred. Water boarding as done by the Japanese was performed TO THE DEATH. To conflate the enhanced interrogation used by the CIA with "real" torture is patently dishonest.
The question is should enhanced interrogation be used to save lives? Not torture, enhanced interrogation. If you are president and choose to not seek information that could save lives, hundreds maybe thousands of lives, because you think playing loud rap music 24/7 is "torture" then you have failed your duty and should be replaced by someone who can keep the country safe. If you truely believe that enhanced interrogation is torture then you simply do not know what torture is.
Well, white slaves in Africa were largely a result of Arabs enslaving white Europeans - mainly from Spain and Italy. Arabs aren't black Africans. There as never an active white slave trade among black Africans because black Africans didn't have the means to raid Europe on a consistent basis.
You also have to recognize that the slave trade was part and parcel of European social structure during the Medieval Period. In large part, it was the Christian conversion of Europe that helped stop the slave trade and turning slaves into serfs. It was the crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem that held slaves of all kinds, but largely Muslims.
If you want to be hyper technical about it, the slave trade existed until the early 20th century - coal miners and company stores.
It's a fascinating subject and one that I've studied off and on over the years.
GoneWithTheWind: Waterboarding by the U.S. included a doctor and medical equipment to make sure no harm or unintended death occurred.
Advanced torture regimes often use doctors, which is why doctors are not permitted to "countenance, condone or participate in the practice of torture". Doctors allow more extreme treatment without killing the prisoner.
GoneWithTheWind: Water boarding as done by the Japanese was performed TO THE DEATH.
You don't seem to understand the purpose of torture is to get information. Dead men tell no tales.
"At the trial of his captors, then-Lt. Chase J. Nielsen, one of the 1942 Army Air Forces officers who flew in the Doolittle Raid and was captured by the Japanese, testified: 'I was given several types of torture. . . . I was given what they call the water cure.' He was asked what he felt when the Japanese soldiers poured the water. 'Well, I felt more or less like I was drowning,' he replied, 'just gasping between life and death.'"
GoneWithTheWind: The question is should enhanced interrogation be used to save lives? Not torture, enhanced interrogation.
So you defend the use of the waterboarding by the Japanese against American pilots. Perhaps you should petition that Japanese soldiers convicted of such crimes should be pardoned.
XRay: But ask the Marines of Iwo, Okinawa, Saipan, the defenders of the Bulge, the men of the Frozen Chosin. Ask them when there moral high ground became untenable. When they decided to fight to win.
The Marines largely fought under the rules of war. It was brutal fighting, but brutal fighting between armed combatants was legal then and legal now. Even though their lives, and the future of the free world were at stake, Americans generally treated their captives well. That had the advantage of encouraging surrender. Turns out people can't help but talk, and legal methods were effective at eliciting information.
"Every soldier, Moran observed, has a 'story' he desperately wants to tell. The interrogator’s job is to provide the atmosphere that allows the prisoner to tell it."
Arabs! True but it would be more correct to say muslims. And their white slaving went into England and Ireland as well. Young white Irish and English women were prized by the Muslim slavers to be sold into harems. But the muslims in Africa were principal in the black slave trade as well. In Black Africa slavery was a way of life when a war between tribes captured the enemy they were turned into slaves. The Muslims bought those slaves from African leaders creating a business for the black tribes powerful enough to raid their nieghbors. The simple fact I stated was true; there were more white slaves brought to Africa then there were black slaves brought to America. I made no claim black Africans made those slaving raids, they were too busy making slaving raids on the tribe next to them. Slaves were brough to the new world by the Dutch, the British and a number of independent sea captains. Slavery was not brought to America by those who would become Americans they were brought here by foreign countries and foreign traders and "foisted" upon us in much the same way drugs are brought here today. Once we won our freedom from England and formed our own government slavery was already entrenched here and the founding fathers fought to create a grand compromise that would both bring the Southern states into the union AND set the stage for the end of slavery by counting 3/5ths of blacks as citizens. By the time our country developed it's own government the "hand" of slavery had already been dealt to us by foriegn nations and independent sea captains. This is the only country in the world to have gone to war with itself to end slavery. Slavery still goes on in much of Africa and slavery is alive and well in all muslim countries. And ironically young white English and Irish women are still in demand as slaves for rich muslim men.
Zac you are interntionally obtuse and no doubt think it makes you look brilliant. But it is tiresome to try to correct your intentional misinterpretations of the obvious. Torture is NOT just to get information. When the Japanese threw babies into the air and caught them on their bayonets what information were they seeking? The Japanese would use prisoners for bayonet practice. And when the Japanese water boarded prisoners it was typically for their pleasure and not for information and they waterboarded to the death.
You avoided the question. Let me make it simple: Would you prefer that a few thousand American and European citizens were killed in the terrorist attacks that were prevented by waterboarding three key terrorists??? If you were the president elected to defend your country and it's citizens would you have NOT waterboarded those three terrorists and preferred instead to allow the terrorists to succeed in their attacks???? Answer the question Zac? Stop deflecting and avoiding the real issue and tell me if you dare that you would prefer that these innocent people had died over inconveniencing three terrorists.
GoneWithTheWind: Torture is NOT just to get information.
We will grant you that. Sometimes it is for humiliation, to enforce conformity, to garner confessions, cruel sport, but fascist regimes often used torture for security purposes, and they were reviled as criminals for having done so.
GoneWithTheWind: Would you prefer that a few thousand American and European citizens were killed in the terrorist attacks that were prevented by waterboarding three key terrorists???
Maybe you should torture their babies to make them talk—if it saves lives, of course.
You're presupposing that torturing people you suspected would actually save lives, when torturing regimes have a poor record in that regard, or that the damage it causes to society wouldn't be greater in the long run. In any case, it should be illegal.
I am aware of the Irish and Scots "slavery", but I'm not at all sure that the amount was as high as some "scholars" claim. Some of the claims are outrageous in terms of "quantity" - 30,000 at a time, etc. To ship 30,000 slaves during the 17th Century would have taken a large fleet of ships - much larger than the British held in their Merchant Marine at the time. The time factors involved in Trans-Atlantic shipments would also have restricted the number of slaves actually transported.
Sorry Zac I am not proposing torture at all. I am proposing enhanced interrogation. If you believe that the CIA could not or did not get a treasure trove of valuable information from the terrorists then I would have to believe you are either uninformed or intentionally misrepresenting the facts. The enhanced interrogation worked! Simple as that. This fact is distressing to the Bush haters but there it is. All of those terrorist attacks that were stopped and all of those terrorists that were captured or killed in the last 10 years or so (including UBL) were "Bush's fault". That simple decision to waterboard KSM saved thousands of lives. You dodged the question. Would you have waterboarded KSM if it would save thousands of lives??? Grow a pair and answer the question. I doubt that you can, your style is to deflect and change the subject.
GoneWithTheWind: I am not proposing torture at all. I am proposing enhanced interrogation.
So to return to our original question, do you think the Japanese who were convicted of waterboarding Americans should be exonerated?
GoneWithTheWind: That simple decision to waterboard KSM saved thousands of lives.
That's the claim. However, it wasn't until they abandoned the worst abuses that they finally got bin Laden.
Should they have waterboarded their children, if that would have garnered information? What if innocent people were subjected to "enhanced interrogation"? Under what rule of law are the Americans to be held accountable? Or is it whatever the Americans do is okay, but when others do it, it's a crime?
You keep conflating Japanese torture by soldiers with waterboarding KSM by the CIA. As I pointed out the waterboarding the Japanese practiced was intended to kill and no precautions were taken to provide medical care in the event of problems. Your comparison is like comparing a mother giving a child timeout to the Sandy Hook shooter. You would have to know your position is indefensible and dishonest so why are you so proud of it?
The information from KSM was directly the result of waterboarding, simple as that. The fact that the information that lead to finding UBL took years is irrelevant. Your position that: A)They could have gotten the information by simple interrogation and B) that waterboarding doesn’t provide good information is 100% wrong. The results were incredibly useful in the war on terror.
Your inability to answer the simple question, i.e. would you have waterboarded KSM if the information you got could save thousands of lives demonstrates your inability to prove your case. If you are morally opposed to waterboarding and as a result said you would have preferred those thousand people died then your position would obviously be ludicrious. If on the other hand you agreed that in this case waterboarding served a greater good and saved thousands of lives and was a morally superior decision then you have no argument. So like a good liberal you change the subject and try to vilify your opponent. Is there no lie you would not tell and no depth you would not sink to in order to justify your radical left wing beliefs?
The entire waterboarding argument is about demonizing Bush. The left is unable to govern with ideas and vision and they must take power using Alinsky’s rules for radicals. For the most part those on the left have no honor and no credibility. Every school in America should show clips of the Democrat party chairperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz responding to legitimate questions so they can see a true pathological liar who represents a political party of pathological liars and how they use their psychopathic personalities to take over a nation. We have reached a point where the low information voters and others who will trade their votes for “free stuff” have made a deal with the devil. Sadly, many good people will suffer in the years ahead with Obama’s great depression and oppression.
GoneWithTheWind: You keep conflating Japanese torture by soldiers with waterboarding KSM by the CIA. As I pointed out the waterboarding the Japanese practiced was intended to kill and no precautions were taken to provide medical care in the event of problems.
That doesn't make sense. If the Japanese intended to kill their captives, they wouldn't have been alive to testify against them. They were using the "water cure" in order to extract information.
GoneWithTheWind: The fact that the information that lead to finding UBL took years is irrelevant.
Of course it's relevant. It's evidence that the information was of low value and probably could have been found by other means.
GoneWithTheWind: Your inability to answer the simple question, i.e. would you have waterboarded KSM if the information you got could save thousands of lives demonstrates your inability to prove your case.
Your question makes questionable presuppositions. If someone knew for sure that murdering or torturing one innocent person would save many others, then most would consider murder or torture. But it would still be illegal. But that sort of certainty as an excuse for crime is nearly always mistaken or insane.
"Kill him! Kill the destroyer of Priam's city! Kill that child!"
You never answered our questions. Should they have waterboarded their children, if that would have garnered information? What if innocent people were subjected to "enhanced interrogation"? Under what rule of law are the Americans to be held accountable? Or is it whatever the Americans do is okay, but when others do it, it's a crime?