Monday, November 12, 2007

Democrat hypocrisy torturing America

This op-ed in The Los Angeles Times contends that the 'legality of torture takes over as the political litmus test in campaigns and confirmation hearings.'

And the author argues that this is not a bad thing.

Far more than the abortion debate ever did, the debate about torture goes to the very heart of what (if anything) this country stands for. Do we want to be the nation imagined by the signers of the Declaration of Independence, a nation with "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind," committed to a vision of human dignity and unalienable rights, limited government and the rule of law?

Or would we rather bring back the methods of the Spanish Inquisition?

As litmus tests go, that's not such a bad one.


And as such, it's a test that the Democratic Senate failed.

During his confirmation hearings for attorney general, Michael Mukasey waffled on the question of whether waterboarding was torture.

He said he found it personally 'repugnant' but that he'd have to wait until he received secret briefings to determine whether it was legal.

No secret briefing should be necessary.

The US military has already banned its use.

And more to the point, waterboarding has been prosecuted in U.S. courts since the late 1800s and was regarded by every U.S. administration before this one as torture.

But it's a tactic that the CIA still uses, which is why Mukasey was quizzed about it.

The UK Independent reported that a former anti-terrorism advisor to President Bush, Malcolm Nance, denounced the practice and stated categorically, "waterboarding is a torture technique – period".

While US media reports typically state that waterboarding involves "simulated drowning", Mr Nance explained that "since the lungs are actually filling with water", there is nothing simulated about it. "Waterboarding," he said, "is slow-motion suffocation with enough time to contemplate the inevitability of blackout and expiration. When done right, it is controlled death."

Michael Mukasey can't figure out whether this Inquisition tactic is legal or not.

But this didn't seem to bother the Democratic-controlled US Senate.

Only 40 of its members were repelled by Mukasey's equivocation on torture and war crimes enough to vote against him.

When the Democrats gained control of Congress, they had us believe that everything would change. Yet when pro-torture attorney general Alberto Gonzales resigned, the Democratic-controlled Congress approved a pro-torture successor.

NY Sen. Charles Schumer called on Gonzales to resign for failing to uphold the rule of law and the Constitution.

Schumer not only voted for Mukasey to be attorney general, the New York senator actually recommended him to Bush in the first place.

The Democrats spent six years pissing and moaning about how terrible that fascist George W. Bush is. But when they have a chance to actually stop him, to make an important stand in favor of American values, they cave yet again.

The Democrats are clearly unwilling or unable to take a clear stand against torture and militarism. This is yet another example of why The Greens are the best choice for those who want to advance a progressive agenda.

1 comment:

Shimmy said...

My favorite aphid is named Charles Schumer. An irresolute bell rings in Charles Schumer's tiny, miserable head. Charles Schumer gambles everything for a pair of scissors, a Zippo lighter, an old stone savage armed, a handsome pin, lace, pennies, and ladybugs.