Wednesday, September 20, 2006

exactly which october surprise

* Billmon:
"Washington headline: Cheney Says Hopes of World Rest on U.S.

In other words, EVERYBODY's fucked."

* tristero wonders about exactly which october surprise is up karl's sleeve. what do yuo think?

* Kleiman:
"In the past week I've spoken (about torture) to two decent and intelligent people who get much of their information about current events from conservative sources. Both of them, quite sincerely, repeated to me the winger talking point about how all the CIA has been doing to captives is playing loud music and keeping them in overly air-conditioned cells. It makes the silence of the Germans about the death camps much easier to understand: if something is too horrible to believe, it's easier not to believe it. And of course those who don't believe that we're torturing people tend to be completely convinced that the people we're not torturing, or sending to places such as Syria not to be tortured, deserve it, in the sense that they're in fact involved in terrorism: which also turns out to be false."

* athenae and tena liveblogged Blinky's UN speech


Anonymous said...


Just thought I'd add that from my observation of a number of peoples reactions to the forms of torture being advocated by the Bush administration is that most people do not understand that, although in many cases (where these forms of torture are implemented) there is no overt permanent psychological or bodily damage, there is immense psychical and bodily pain produced during torture in the victim by use of these techniques. Additionally, by my estimation, there is likely permanent damage to most of these victims.

One reality connected with the rationalization for the forms of torture addressed in this post is that a hypothetical or partially-real "situation of desperation" or urgency that includes the concept of "there is no other answer" or "there is no other solution" is created in order for the rationalization to "pass muster" and be "saleable" or convincing to the perpetrators themselves and to others (in this case the public). This often includes the "there is not enough time to discuss the issue in depth" argument. Also implicit in this type of rationalization, and it's like-kind, is a desperate attempt to "adequately vilify" the victim.

In this case (and of course in other occurances of torture), by my 'take on it,' the perpetrators, subconsciously knowing their own shame and knowing of their wrong doing, and aside from any "tactically arrived at concepts of secrecy," try to hide. And one way to attempt to "hide" is to "adequately vilify" the victim.

This problem, as many people already realize, is directly connected to deeper issues of corruption or error in the way people, families, corporations and governments deal and interact with one another.

One 'golden rule,' that if more folks were to learn more about, that might be helpful in resolving some of these problems is concept of "Sweep before your own doorstep first." Of course there is one of those 'sayings' from that guy who was tortured and killed a couple of thousand years ago:

"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye."


lukery said...

thnx david - you are right. dehumanizing 'the other' (aka 'hate') makes anything possible.
(and that guy you quote from 2000 years ago said a whole lot of stuff that made sense)

as for long-term damage of torture, (psychological or physical) - i just finished listening to this - he was innocent of course.