As John points out , today is a dark day for us — the day torture became officially sanctioned government policy. I wrote yesterday about Hillary Clinton's waffling on the subject of torture during her interview with the Daily News Editorial Board. Today, a laudatory op-ed in the LA Times by torture advocate Alan Dershowitz points out that Bill's also equivocating on the subject.
Apparently America's most famous power couple has decided that torture makes a great triangulation topic. Both of them carve out an impossibly nuanced stand against the current bill, but in favor of torture under certain circumstances - circumstances that, as I pointed out yesterday, don't occur in real life.
That's why many intelligence experts and US generals both oppose the policy — the intelligence crowd because they know it doesn't work, and the generals because they know it will increase torture against our own troops.
The ex-President's hair-splitting on the topic reminds us that he is the guy who first told the nation about the importance of knowing "what 'is' is." In fact, Clinton himself points out that "we have erred in knowing who a real suspect is."
So why forge ahead with these absurd equivocations? In the mistaken belief that it will help Hillary become President. This is more of a reminder why triangulation, instead of being the Democrats' salvation, could be their doom. Moral equivocation doesn't work - not ethically, not politically. Even Bill Clinton, the most brilliant natural politician of a generation, couldn't win a majority of the popular vote taking that route. How do you think Hillary will do?
All this triangulating only serves to muddy the waters, about a topic that's wrong morally AND tactically. But Dershowitz is delighted.
Dershowitz for his part insists again that he's "personally opposed" to torture, while continuing to engage in an ongoing campaign to legalize its use and make it socially acceptable. Martyrdom complex ever at the ready, he insists that for his noble efforts on behalf of something he despises he's been called "a moral monster, an advocate for torture, and a Torquemada."
For the record, I've never called him a Torquemada. He's shown no sign of the Inquisitor's leadership skills.