Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Torture Argument

Here is the way the rhetoric of responsibility is shaping up in the debate about America's regime of torture --

  • We cannot prosecute the agents who actually administered the torture, because they were following what they believed to be legal orders.
  • We cannot prosecute the neo-con lawyers who twisted the Constitution into a recommendation to permit torture, because they were just giving their best legal opinions.
  • We obviously cannot prosecute Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield, and Tenet because to do so would set the bad precedent of a newly elected party going after its predecessors.

Hence, nobody is responsible, and since there is no one to hold accountable, there is no point in pressing any further to find out what actually happened.

Have I got that right?

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