Monday, September 18, 2006

Pouting Over It

There are many allowances for interrogation under the Geneva Conventions, but President Bush has recently turned up his nose at making any kind of compromise that would achieve worthy objectives in the war against terrorism (please, let's drop this whole War on "Terror" business) while remaining legal and moral. He's giving people the false choice between his way or not at all, like these are the only options. This reminds me of the stupid "choice" given by my 5th grade teacher: "my way or the highway", and is aptly pointed out by Matt Yglesias:

Bush wants to order intelligence agencies to violate all the country's traditions and several of its laws in order that they might torture people. To that end, he's willing to say that if he can't torture people he just won't interrogate them at all.

Tim Lee also makes a couple of important points:

Here, he's fighting tooth and nail to prevent Congress from second-guessing his decision to torture suspected terrorists. The only principle that seems to be operating in both cases is the principle of unbridled executive power. He appears to believe that when he makes a decision, Congress has a duty to defer to his judgment. Fortunately, that's not the way our Constitution works.
As near as I can tell, what the president has done is flout the law, get caught, and then declare that if Congress doesn't retroactively ratify his illegal behavior, he'll be forced to set the terrorists free. This is simply reprehensible.

As near as I can tell, the president is acting like a spoiled brat who doesn't like the way the rules of the game don't allow him to play however he damn well feels like it, so he's going to take his ball and go home. Well, fuck him.


At 5:37 PM, Blogger Molly said...

I'm glad you posted on this. Personally, I couldn't find the energy. You're right, W is like a bratty child too ignorant to understand the rules (at least with children that ignorance is caused by youth) and too stubborn to try to learn.

For me, this issue is so clear, I can't think on it any more without feeling ill. I can't believe given all his rhetoric that our president feels not the slightest shame asking for the right to torture prisoners. Land of the free my foot.

At 6:02 AM, Blogger Garry said...

The Daily Show last night featured a commentary similar to yours, complete with "spoiled brat" on the playground analogy. Incidentally, Bill Clinton was on the show - it seems surreal to have a former president that is genuinely focused on changing the world for the better while his successor is geared toward accumulating as much power as possible and keeping it. What's W going to do with himself in three years? No one will want to have anything to do with him at all. Clinton said that the most disappointing thing about the administration in his mind is that they feel they need to polarize the political community in order to win - if you're not with us then you're against us. But I find it hard to believe that George Bush would be able to cooperate with anyone, let alone welcome it.

At 7:06 AM, Blogger Scott McC said...

I scooped The Daily Show?! I can't believe it!


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