HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » kpete » Journal


Profile Information

Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 51,726

Journal Archives

Cheney does not even understand why somebody would look away. His soul is a cold, black void.

The Torture Party: Why Republicans Defend the Most Sadistic Government Program in Recent History
By Jonathan Chait Follow @jonathanchait


The failings of the torture regimen were, in fact, every conservative nightmare of a failed, out-of-control government program come to life. Through banal bureaucratic dysfunction, the torturers stumbled into a practice that lacked any sound empirical basis. (The CIA—which simply reverse-engineered the resistance training its own elite soldiers underwent, which taught them to withstand torture from communist regimes attempting to solicit propagandist false confessions—never considered that a practice designed to elicit false confessions is poorly suited to drawing out true ones.) Officials covered up their own mistakes; soldiers carried out practices haphazardly—some subjects were tortured for weeks before being interrogated. These are all acts of cruelty that Republicans would surely find terrifying—evil, even—if enacted by foreign governments, or Democratic administrations. And yet a fixation on evil abroad rendered invisible the most egregious abuses of government powers at home.

The most important evidence of the Bush administration’s disposition toward torture may have come not from the Senate report but from Cheney’s second and more carefully considered reply. Appearing later that night on Fox News, the former vice-president was no longer merely dismissing the report’s conclusions out of hand. Nor was he retreating to the slick evasions or complaints about George W. Bush’s feelings that so many of his fellow Republicans had relied upon.

The host, Bret Baier, asked Cheney about Bush’s reported discomfort when told of a detainee’s having been chained to a dungeon ceiling, clothed only in a diaper, and forced to urinate and defecate on himself. “What are we supposed to do? Kiss him on both cheeks and say ‘Please, please, tell us what you know’?” Cheney said. “Of course not. We did exactly what needed to be done in order to catch those who were guilty on 9/11 and prevent a further attack, and we were successful on both parts.”

Here, finally, was the brutal moral logic of Cheneyism on bright display. The insistence by his fellow partisans on averting their eyes from the horrible truth at least grows out of a human reaction. Cheney does not even understand why somebody would look away. His soul is a cold, black void.


stocking stuffer


Supreme Court Justice Scalia: The Constitution doesn't prohibit torture

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia weighs in on whether it's legal for America to torture prisoners.

Scalia tells a Swiss radio network that American and European liberals who say such tactics may never be used are being self-righteous.

Scalia says nothing in the Constitution appears to prohibit harsh treatment of suspected terrorists.


Maxine Waters: POTUS & JP Morgan whipped House Democrats on CROmnibus yesterday

In a sign of the importance of the issue to Wall Street banks, JPMorgan Chief Executive Jamie Dimon telephoned lawmakers on Thursday urging them to support passage of the spending bill, according to a person familiar with the calls.

“I think after the president and Jamie Dimon started calling, some people gave in,” Rep. Maxine Waters of California, the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee who voted against the bill, said after the vote.


"a cash award of $2,500 for consistently superior work."

A prosecutor’s Eureka moment: I never got specifics because they didn’t exist

I spent five years prosecuting war crimes cases at Guantánamo Bay. While we could not use evidence in court derived from torture or abusive treatment, I questioned why maltreatment was used in the first place. The answer was always this: “Torture works. Torture saves lives.” As a prosecutor, I was never provided with any specifics. After reading the Senate’s report, I now understand why: they didn’t exist. No terror plot was stopped due to abusive interrogations. This was my Eureka moment after reading the report.

The very first Senate finding I stumbled across was right there on Page 9 – and it completely refutes the official justification for using torture. “o intelligence while in CIA custody”? It is the first finding, and it is a blockbuster. If torture does not lead to actionable intelligence and does not stop terrorist acts, then why use it at all? Shouldn’t we have used traditional, rapport-based interrogation techniques such as the FBI agents who questioned Abu Zubaydah? The suspect was cooperating until the CIA’s contractors started waterboarding Abu Zubaydah in detention for 17 days, until he became “completely unresponsive”.


This is a particularly despicable and illuminating look into how the CIA treated its officers who were carrying out torture techniques. After a detainee, Gul Rahman, was chained, nearly naked, to a concrete floor for an extended time and then froze to to death, no officer on-site nor at the CIA was disciplined – let alone prosecuted. In fact, the CIA officer in charge of the detention site was recommended to receive a bonus of $2,500 for his “consistently superior work”. Five pages earlier in the report, we are told that this particular CIA officer was already known for dishonesty and lack of judgment when he was sent on his first overseas assignment to head this detention site. Eleven years and one page in the report later, the CIA acknowledged it “erred” in not holding anyone accountable for Rahman’s death.

Eleven years.

from a few days ago, read it in a fresh light:

Money doesn't talk, it swears.

Democrats who voted for the CRomnibus have received twice as much money from the finance industry as the ‘no’ voters

here is the vote. find your dem:

Noam Chomsky: Reagan was an ‘extreme racist’ who re-enslaved African-Americans

......Chomsky said, “African-Americans had about two decades in which they had a shot of entering society. A black worker could get a job in an auto plant, as the unions were still functioning, and he could buy a small house and send his kid to college. But by the 1970s and 1980s it’s going back to the criminalization of black life.”

“It’s called the drug war, and it’s a racist war. Ronald Reagan was an extreme racist — though he denied it — but the whole drug war is designed, from policing to eventual release from prison, to make it impossible for black men and, increasingly, women to be part of (American) society.”

“In fact,” he continued, “if you look at American history, the first slaves came over in 1619, and that’s half a millennium. There have only been three or four decades in which African-Americans have had a limited degree of freedom — not entirely, but at least some.”

“They have been re-criminalized and turned into a slave labor force — that’s prison labor,” Chomsky concluded. “This is American history. To break out of that is no small trick.”


If you're furious about #CRomnibus but didn't vote in midterms, may I suggest this drink?


I think the head of the Senate intel committee just called the CIA director a fucking liar -->

Sen Dianne FeinsteinVerified account
Brennan: "unknowable" if we could have gotten the intel other ways.
Study shows it IS knowable: CIA had info before torture. #ReadTheReport


U.S. won't stop Native Americans from growing, selling pot on their lands

Opening the door for what could be a lucrative and controversial new industry on some Native American reservations, the Justice Department on Thursday will tell U.S. attorneys to not prevent tribes from growing or selling marijuana on the sovereign lands, even in states that ban the practice.

The new guidance, released in a memorandum, will be implemented on a case-by-case basis and tribes must still follow federal guidelines, said Timothy Purdon, the U.S. attorney for North Dakota and the chairman of the Attorney General's Subcommittee on Native American Issues.

It once again sends a message that we really don't care about federal drug laws.
- Kevin A. Sabet, an opponent of marijuana legalization and former advisor on drug issues to President Obama
It remains to be seen how many reservations will take advantage of the policy. Many tribes are opposed to legalizing pot on their lands, and federal officials will continue to enforce the law in those areas, if requested.

Southern California is home to nearly 30 federal- and state-recognized Indian tribes, with a total population of nearly 200,000, according to state estimates. The largest tribes operate profitable casinos and outlet malls, including those by the Morongo, Cabazon, San Manuel and Pechanga tribes.

Go to Page: « Prev 1 ... 617 618 619 620 621 622 623 624 625 626 627 ... 1798 Next »