Thursday, December 22, 2005


Why is torturing people in secret facilities with no rights and no oversight a bad idea?

Short answer: Mistakes get made. alot. and aren't easily detected or corrected.

Good intentions do not equal good execution. No oversight lends itself to abuses and uncorrected errors. It's circular. There's no oversight, so mistakes go undetected and abuses go unreported.

That well-meaning little inquisition that is only going to affect the really bad people tends to get out of hand and affect the kinda-bad people, then the mistakenly-bad people, then the unpopular people, the politically-opposed people and finally the good people. We can't really stop it because the people with the power to stop it are the ones behind it. And there's no mechanism to "stop the iron maiden, I wanna get off!"

Remember: Bad people lie. So, mistakenly-bad people are just lying.

I guess we could just hope for these little revolutions to burn out from their own intensity, but then the world's a lot more populous now, so it's just gonna take a little longer to Robespierre our way through enough people that there just aren't enough left to bother with. Little comfort that the thing will then get a second wind by turning inward and cleaning house of the unpurest-of-the-pure. I am sure I will have been turned into soylent green long before that day.

So forgive me if I want my government with checks and balances. If I want my congress to have more power than my executive (yes, even as pathetic a congress as we have at the moment).

I get defense. Or maybe I don't-- I thought the war was on terror, not on holiday.


Now don't get me started on why the death penalty is a bad idea (hint, see short answer above)


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