Water-bored

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I was skipping through the channels on TV and came across Rep. Dan Burton on CSPAN. In the brief moment I watched I heard him defend waterboarding as, not a form of torture, but a mechanism to get information from terrorists. I mean c'mon! Has that act really not been definitively defined as torture? Are we, in the public, bored with the subject? Tell me there is established law. If not, at least assure me that the people deciding how to define it aren't as stupid as Rep. Burton.

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D_NATURED
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It is more accurately called water-torture rather than water-boarding. What does the board matter? Is a board even required?

Water-boarding is what I do when on a single plank being toed by a ski-boat.

They are now claiming a link between water-torture and the intelligence that gave us Osama. I refuse to even consider this without reasonable proof. It seems like something too easy to say and too difficult to prove.

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Jah
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Aug. 31, 2010 11:35 am

Scroll to about 03:50 in the interview of Matthew Alexander Schultz asks him if it proves torture is a good thing.

http://redcounty.com/ says it was because of w

Townhall says the same.

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douglaslee
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

So, with the evidence being clear that water boarding IS torture, how do so many right wingers, evidently, labor under the notion that it's something else? How can they say, with a straight face, that water boarding is merely a mechanism for gaining information from terrorists? That's like diminishing a rape as merely forced copulation...that's all, or calling a murder a non-defensive life-taking activity. I find it strange that conservatives who are always ranting about political correctness should be so willing to try to obscure the facts through their word choices.

Are there any conservatives on this site who believe that water boarding is NOT torture and, if so, what is it? And, if it's not toruture, should the technique be used on common criminals to gain additional information? Put your morals where your mouth is.

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D_NATURED
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Morals of fundy religious groups seem to apply only to their own group.. As can be seen thru history.. Killing is OK, but you cannot violate adult consensual sex rules.. In the old testament bible stories, make forced concubines of conquered tribes (but you have to “pay” for a bride otherwise).. Making slaves of blacks was justified thru the same bible.. The mass murder of bushes “PRE” emptive war is somehow re labeled as not being murder, or not killing.. You got me, I don’t see how they sweep this under the rug and still claim moral superiority because they never let any sexual issue slide..

Quote D_NATURED:

So, with the evidence being clear that water boarding IS torture, how do so many right wingers, evidently, labor under the notion that it's something else? How can they say, with a straight face, that water boarding is merely a mechanism for gaining information from terrorists? That's like diminishing a rape as merely forced copulation...that's all, or calling a murder a non-defensive life-taking activity. I find it strange that conservatives who are always ranting about political correctness should be so willing to try to obscure the facts through their word choices.

Are there any conservatives on this site who believe that water boarding is NOT torture and, if so, what is it? And, if it's not toruture, should the technique be used on common criminals to gain additional information? Put your morals where your mouth is.

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bobbler
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

I guess if they can claim that it worked, a lie, they can justify torture because it "works." Such is the logic of our moral guardians of family values and patriotism against us America haters who would criticize the torturers for torturing. But it does not work either.

Just send it to rewrite. The Right's answer to history.

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DRC
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

You mean the same water boarding which the U.S. executed soldiers of other nations for using.....and which does nothing but excite the sadistic sociopaths who order and perform it....and those who become complicit in its use......?

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Waterboarding for Dummies

"Self-proclaimed waterboarding fan Dick Cheney called it a no-brainer in a 2006 radio interview: Terror suspects should get a "a dunk in the water." But recently released internal documents reveal the controversial "enhanced interrogation" practice was far more brutal on detainees than Cheney's description sounds, and was administered with meticulous cruelty.

Interrogators pumped detainees full of so much water that the CIA turned to a special saline solution to minimize the risk of death, the documents show. The agency used a gurney "specially designed" to tilt backwards at a perfect angle to maximize the water entering the prisoner's nose and mouth, intensifying the sense of choking – and to be lifted upright quickly in the event that a prisoner stopped breathing.

The documents also lay out, in chilling detail, exactly what should occur in each two-hour waterboarding "session." Interrogators were instructed to start pouring water right after a detainee exhaled, to ensure he inhaled water, not air, in his next breath. They could use their hands to "dam the runoff" and prevent water from spilling out of a detainee's mouth. They were allowed six separate 40-second "applications" of liquid in each two-hour session – and could dump water over a detainee's nose and mouth for a total of 12 minutes a day. Finally, to keep detainees alive even if they inhaled their own vomit during a session – a not-uncommon side effect of waterboarding – the prisoners were kept on a liquid diet. The agency recommended Ensure Plus.

"This is revolting and it is deeply disturbing," said Dr. Scott Allen, co-director of the Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights at Brown University who has reviewed all of the documents for Physicians for Human Rights. "The so-called science here is a total departure from any ethics or any legitimate purpose. They are saying, ‘This is how risky and harmful the procedure is, but we are still going to do it.' It just sounds like lunacy," he said. "This fine-tuning of torture is unethical, incompetent and a disgrace to medicine."

These torture guidelines were contained in a ream of internal government documents made public over the past year, including a legal review of Bush-era CIA interrogations by the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility released late last month.

Though public, the hundreds of pages of documents authorizing or later reviewing the agency's "enhanced interrogation program" haven't been mined for waterboarding details until now. While Bush-Cheney officials defended the legality and safety of waterboarding by noting the practice has been used to train U.S. service members to resist torture, the documents show that the agency's methods went far beyond anything ever done to a soldier during training. U.S. soldiers, for example, were generally waterboarded with a cloth over their face one time, never more than twice, for about 20 seconds, the CIA admits in its own documents.

http://www.salon.com/news/torture/index.html?story=/news/feature/2010/03/09/waterboarding_for_dummies

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

What was that movie? Unthinkable? Sam L. Jackson maybe? I Highly recommend.

I understand difficult moral calculus, but it does not apply here. The water-torture link is simply Republican spin. Today's May 3rd AP story from Goldman/Apuzzo seems on target.

Any mention of KSM or water-torture in relation to the OBL kill seems out of place to me.

The only link to water-torture seems to be that info on the courier was interpolated from a failure of water-torture to produce a connection after used on several persons.

In other words, since several water-tortured suspects including KSM failed to admit to a connection between the courier and OBL, the interrogators interpreted that therefore there must be an important connection between the two.

Once again in yet other words - Because several people denied a connection while being tortured, the reasonable conclusion must be that a very strong connection must exist.

I get the proposition, but the theoretical rationale escapes me. It also seems inconsistent with everything I think I understand about water torture.

Lastly, the AP article I mentioned says the connection was given up using standard interrogation techniques rather than torture (enhanced).

I guess OBL's demise can be considered an "enhanced death". Others would call it murder. Maybe even some idiot from Texas would call it self defense. Psycho-semantics.

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Jah
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Aug. 31, 2010 11:35 am

The movie was (Unbreakable) with Samuel Jackson and Bruce Willis

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Thanks for the grizzly description of waterboarding.. It just struck me this is a real war crime.. No one knows which of thise people were even remotely involved with the terrorism (although I am sure after the torture they sympathazed with the terrorists for sure).. If we somehow knew these people were the actual terrorists, maybe I could look the other way (having much more pressing issues fighting the corporate poloticians).. The "FACT" that probably most of these people were innocent bystanders makes this very clearly an atrocity..

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bobbler
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote bobbler:

Thanks for the grizzly description of waterboarding.. It just struck me this is a real war crime.. No one knows which of thise people were even remotely involved with the terrorism (although I am sure after the torture they sympathazed with the terrorists for sure).. If we somehow knew these people were the actual terrorists, maybe I could look the other way (having much more pressing issues fighting the corporate poloticians).. The "FACT" that probably most of these people were innocent bystanders makes this very clearly an atrocity..

Each side calls the other a monster or a devil, based upon their behavior, and uses those acts to justify horrific cruelty in return. It is a war of equally contemptible players.

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D_NATURED
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Oct. 20, 2010 8:47 pm

It was funny to watch the GOP primary debates and see the Waterboarding responses. It was of course no surprise whatsoever to find Ron Paul in disagreement with the use of waterboarding. It was also nice to see Gary Johnson represent himself well there & take the same stance, he's not exactly as on-the-same-page as me as a guy like Ron Paul is, but he seems to have his head on somewhat straight, at least from what I gathered there.

I also decided that I can't stand Rick Santorum, and it would have been great if a lighting fixture fell out of the ceiling and landed on his face.

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Cheesebone
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Sep. 1, 2010 9:18 am

The USA has supported violations against human rights in the past, is doing so likely right now, and in my opinion will do so in the future. Its embarassing. It creates a moral quagmire, but I would like to change that. Thank you guys for the heads up. It goes to show how much of the USA is imperfect, but that can be changed.

micahjr34
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Feb. 7, 2011 4:57 pm
Quote micahjr34:

The USA has supported violations against human rights in the past, is doing so likely right now, and in my opinion will do so in the future. Its embarassing. It creates a moral quagmire, but I would like to change that. Thank you guys for the heads up. It goes to show how much of the USA is imperfect, but that can be changed.

You're right, it can be changed. There is so much fear, though, that it makes it difficult to get past that fear and appeal to the brave part of people that understand why protecting liberty is more valuable than revenge. If we become as bad as the enemy, we've lost.

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D_NATURED
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I have realized that most beliefs people call "good" orbit around the idea what differentiates a person from a beast is a desire for interactions with ourselves and others that is not based on hypocrisy. "It is better to die consistent with ones values than to live as a hypocrite."

On the other hand, what most beliefs people call "bad" orbit around the idea that survival is more important than consistency in how our interactions with ourselves and others are. Machiavelli describes this fluently in "The Prince," that in order to survive one needs to be a hypocrite and a liar. It is more important to stay alive than to differentiate oneself according to the "dichotomy" of being a person and being a beast.

This does not necessarily apply to a specific series of beliefs, but rather the attitude behind those beliefs. "Most" people unconsciously strive for the first one, "others" follow the second one. An important thing that I need to point out is that no one follows one or the other completely. It is the human condition that those who follow the first fall short, and that those who follow the second sometimes follow the first in short bursts. Again, these two systems of thought are an attitude behind a series of beliefs, but not the beliefs themselves. It is possible that two people have different beliefs, but the attitude withn those beliefs could be the same.

So, what is the attitude behind your beliefs? Do your beliefs reflect an attitude that death with consistency is better than life with hypocrisy? Do your beliefs reflect an attitude that survival is paramount, even if that survival is based on hypocrisy and lying? Or do you attempt to seek a middle ground where survival and consistency in belief are not necessarily exclusive of each other?

Do you have the attitude that life is a choice within choices, and that choice is more than just choosing, but to create new options when the ones given are unacceptable?

micahjr34
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Feb. 7, 2011 4:57 pm
Quote micahjr34:

I have realized that most beliefs people call "good" orbit around the idea what differentiates a person from a beast is a desire for interactions with ourselves and others that is not based on hypocrisy. "It is better to die consistent with ones values than to live as a hypocrite."

On the other hand, what most beliefs people call "bad" orbit around the idea that survival is more important than consistency in how our interactions with ourselves and others are. Machiavelli describes this fluently in "The Prince," that in order to survive one needs to be a hypocrite and a liar. It is more important to stay alive than to differentiate oneself according to the "dichotomy" of being a person and being a beast.

This does not necessarily apply to a specific series of beliefs, but rather the attitude behind those beliefs. "Most" people unconsciously strive for the first one, "others" follow the second one. An important thing that I need to point out is that no one follows one or the other completely. It is the human condition that those who follow the first fall short, and that those who follow the second sometimes follow the first in short bursts. Again, these two systems of thought are an attitude behind a series of beliefs, but not the beliefs themselves. It is possible that two people have different beliefs, but the attitude withn those beliefs could be the same.

So, what is the attitude behind your beliefs? Do your beliefs reflect an attitude that death with consistency is better than life with hypocrisy? Do your beliefs reflect an attitude that survival is paramount, even if that survival is based on hypocrisy and lying? Or do you attempt to seek a middle ground where survival and consistency in belief are not necessarily exclusive of each other?

I think we can choose to stand for something in life, if we want to, and there's many examples of humans doing that. We CAN also be principled while defending ourselves from agressive others.Torturing and killing others that we may exist torture and death free-for a while longer-is an ironic tragedy of human weakness.

I see a clear difference between living and surviving. If all we want to do is survive, we'll accept anything short of death. If we desire to live principled lives, however, we can accept that our death may go to demonstrate greater truths to those who remain. Sure, it will be the end for us, but not for our principles. If we only wish to survive, though, we have chosen that one animal principle to take the place of all the more spiritual ones. We choose the beast.

Do you have the attitude that life is a choice within choices, and that choice is more than just choosing, but to create new options when the ones given are unacceptable?

Of course life is a series of choices, many difficult, especially when we desire to rise above our beastiness and have a society. Either way we choose, however, we end up dead, so the choices are really about how we'll live and not whether we live or die. In the grand scheme of things, nobody gets a long life.

Forest Gump said, "life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get". I say, life is like a game of Russian Roulette. You know what you're going to get, you just don't know when. When we consider the choices of life outside our own desire to live forever, we always make the more spiritual decision.

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D_NATURED
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Oct. 20, 2010 8:47 pm

Before I go any further, I have to acknowledge that I do not know everything, I am not all powerful, and I am not perfect. One of the choices I make in life is to be reserved, forgiving, and merciful, so that when I ask for mercy from others I can do so with out hypocrisy. However, I catch myself giving into the "beast" a lot, so when I do I ask for mercy, and when others ask for mercy I give it, so that I can ask for it honestly.

Life is about choices. We can't choose to avoid death. I guess that's why it's such a negative thing. However we can choose what to do in life. With out choice, are we not dead already? With no choice we would be like dead robots operating to a program.

micahjr34
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Feb. 7, 2011 4:57 pm

"Choice is more than just choosing, it is creating new options when the ones given are unacceptable."

micahjr34
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