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  1. #1
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    Default the task force on detainee treatment torture report

    seem like something people should have hear about but i do not see any one mentioning it. but then mainstream news have been rather dominated these past couple of days have not they?

    http://detaineetaskforce.org/read/]the report"
    summery article
    supplement article
    an other supplement article

  2. #2
    Vaguely Precise Seymour's Avatar
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    And finally over a year-and-a-half later the detainee torture report is released! I'm curious if there will be any longer term ramifications, especially since multiple entities in the government tried to delay and redact the report.

    Will it generate unrest (and even attacks) abroad? Will it create new calls for those responsible be charged for their crimes? Will it generate a new round of "the end justifies the means" rationales? Given current polarization, it's difficult to imagine much changing in the US.

    In (perhaps) related news, a new study indicates that the Big Five traits of agreeableness and conscientiousness make people more likely to go along with inflicting pain on others in Milgram-type scenarios. It's kind of interesting that the "go with the flow" part of Agreeableness has very serious downsides in some scenarios.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member senza tema's Avatar
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    Here's the report itself, if you have the belly for it.

    Motherfucker, this has been one depressing year.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seymour View Post

    Will it create new calls for those responsible be charged for their crimes? Will it generate a new round of "the end justifies the means" rationales? Given current polarization, it's difficult to imagine much changing in the US.
    No it won't, yes it will, and nothing is going to change in the US.
    Last edited by senza tema; 12-13-2014 at 12:23 AM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member senza tema's Avatar
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    I'm actually kinda surprised more members aren't weighing in on this. You people seem scrappy enough.

    I guess torture has become ho hum these days. From 9/11 to Game of Thrones. Nothing un-American about it anymore.
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    Senior Member ceecee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seymour View Post
    It's kind of interesting that the "go with the flow" part of Agreeableness has very serious downsides in some scenarios.
    What a relief. Maybe being a fucking asshole has it's advantages after all.

    What is this report being made public going to accomplish? Is there some kind of revelation that the post 9/11 world got brutal on every level? Even with Americans who just don't do these things? I didn't think that level of naivety existed anywhere on the planet. Nothing is going to change here.
    I like to rock n' roll all night and *part* of every day. I usually have errands... I can only rock from like 1-3.

  6. #6
    Vaguely Precise Seymour's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ceecee View Post
    What a relief. Maybe being a fucking asshole has it's advantages after all.
    In certain respects, sure (although there are other aspects than being low-Agreeable that lower the chance of one going along with torture).

    Quote Originally Posted by ceecee View Post
    What is this report being made public going to accomplish? Is there some kind of revelation that the post 9/11 world got brutal on every level? Even with Americans who just don't do these things? I didn't think that level of naivety existed anywhere on the planet. Nothing is going to change here.
    Yes, for decades the US was categorically, statutorily against torture. We signed international agreements to that effect. We prosecuted people for violating those agreements (both our own, and people of other countries).

    That doesn't mean we always lived up to our ideals (see also our treatement of Japanese Americans during WWII, or the My Lai massacre during Viet Nam for other examples of American brutality), or that Americans didn't commit atrocities. Still, torture is both ineffective (compared to other techniques) and morally wrong. Prosecuting incidences of torture is both the correct thing to do, and gives us a moral high ground to stand on. If you don't think using torture infuriates and motivates people abroad, you are being naive. If you don't think people abroad already knew about it (since it had been reporting previously, although some of the horrific specifics in this report are new), then you haven't been following the news.

    And, guess what? The world was brutal before 9/11, but some people chose not to descend to the level of their enemies. In the case of torture, that's morally and practically the correct thing to do. People who think otherwise have watched one-too-many episodes of 24, or have confused being cruel with being tough and realistic. Sometimes the most practical and effective thing to do isn't the cruelest thing to do. It might not be truthiness, but there it is.

    And I agree, nothing is likely to change in the short term politically... but more's the pity.

  7. #7
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    Default State Torture and the Treaty of Westphalia

    The Treaty of Westphalia of 1648 outlawed State torture. That is, the Treaty outlawed torture by the State as a matter of policy.

    So when the President openly orders torture, that State is in breach of the Treaty.

    So State torture is morally and legally far worse than say torture carried out by the military alone, or torture carried out by criminal gangs.

    But the President of the United States of America ordered his CIA to torture. So the USA is the only civilized State who has practised torture since 1648.

    But worse, the latest Pew poll shows that 68% of Americans support State torture.

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