Rick Santorum: “I Do Not Believe [Enhanced Interrogation] is Torture”

Former Senator Rick Santorum, a Catholic, has formed an exploratory committee to see if he can generate support to run for President.

Apparently there is a big flap between Rick Santorum and John McCain on the issue of waterboarding (enhanced interrogation) which was used to gain the cooperation of Khalid Sheik Mohammed — cooperation that led to his giving information which enabled our forces to find Osama Bin Laden.

Read “The Waterboarding Trail to Bin Laden: Former CIA Director Michael Hayden said that as late as 2006 fully half of the government’s knowledge about the structure and activities of al Qaeda came from harsh interrogations”

I have been back and forth on the waterboarding issue, but I have come to the conclusion that this whole thing is being blown out of proportion due to a lack of understanding of what waterboarding is. Today, Mark Shea, who I love and respect, is engaging in some brutal ad hominem against Rick Santorum. So who is right and who is wrong here? Let’s take a step back, a deep breath, and consider the facts.

Is waterboarding “torture”? I would agree with these remarks below from Fr. Brian Harrison at Catholic Culture:

Even deciding what exactly we mean by torture is not easy. The Catechism of the Catholic Church describes it as “physical or moral violence” (CCC 2297); the definition given by the 1984 United Nations Convention on Torture is “the intentional infliction of severe pain.” The words violence and severe are themselves somewhat vague. Who draws the line — and where? — as to which specific practices are harsh enough to correspond to those words? What has become clear in the contemporary debate is that while many shudder-evoking practices (which needn’t be spelled out here) are recognized by everyone as meriting the name torture, there is no consensus about whether other less extreme interrogation techniques really count as torture: for instance, sleep deprivation, being kept under harsh temperatures or in uncomfortable positions, or “waterboarding” (which causes a brief, panic-inducing sensation of being about to drown but no pain or injury). Since no Catholic magisterial intervention so far offers any real guidance for resolving this controversy, the only methods we can be sure are included under “torture,” when that word appears in Church documents, are those in the former group.

“Inducing panic”, such as we find in waterboarding, is not “torture”. Considering that it is not torture in the first place, all other points appear to be moot.

Rick Santorum responded on the Mark Levin Show yesterday to the false claims that he endorses the use of torture. (CLICK HERE to watch video at The Right Scoop to hear his remarks.)

Again, I’ve been back and forth on the issue, because I did not understand fully what waterboarding is and how the Church defines “torture”. Now, I know. It’s not torture and it did gain information necessary to capture Osama Bin Laden. It was not used to force anyone to confess a crime but to gain information. The intent was to defend life and the action was not torture. Case closed.

Related at Catholic Online: Silence on Santorum is Deafening: Republican Establishment Sends Signals

Related at WMUR, New Hampshire: Conversation with the Candidate, Rick Santorum

187 Responses to Rick Santorum: “I Do Not Believe [Enhanced Interrogation] is Torture”

  • When it comes to the “GREAT CATHOLIC TORTURE DEBATE” Lisa, Mark Shea and brutal ad hominem are old friends.

  • “You’re traveling through another dimension. You unlock this door with the key of daring. Beyond it is another dimension: a dimension of sound, a dimension of fury. A dimension of rhetoric, a dimension of polemic. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, between fact and opinion, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. You’re moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas, of thought and emotion. You move into a land of certitude and attack. You’ve just crossed over into… the Torture Zone.”

    Best Wishes on the journey Lisa.

  • In the various Catholic debates about American foreign policy I’ve noticed a disturbing trend: those who think it’s not necessary wrong for America to (at times) intervene abroad also support waterboarding, while those who (like Mark Shea) advocate a Ron Paul-esque “non-interventionist” foreign policy (or as I like to call it, “Let Tyranny Flourish”) are also against said interrogation practice.

    Am I the only “interventionist” who thinks waterboarding to be wrong?

    (On the main topic, there *is* the fact that John McCain actually suffered various “enhanced interrogation” practices while captured by the Viet Cong, so he probably does know a thing or two about it’s effectiveness and such…”

  • What John McCain suffered actually was torture. His bones were broken, for example. Induced panic isn’t torture.

  • “Am I the only “interventionist” who thinks waterboarding to be wrong?”

    No, as I believe it crosses the line. I am against all physical torture as I have stated ad nauseum. I have also stated that I am not against psychological manipulation, limited sleep deprivation, lying, white noise, isolation, etc. to elicit information from captured terrorists. I also understand how reasonable people can disagree with me.

  • “You’re traveling through another dimension. You unlock this door with the key of daring. Beyond it is another dimension: a dimension of sound, a dimension of fury. A dimension of rhetoric, a dimension of polemic. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, between fact and opinion, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. You’re moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas, of thought and emotion. You move into a land of certitude and attack. You’ve just crossed over into… the Torture Zone.”

    Classic Phillip! :)

  • Is there a difference in kind or just degree between “inducing panic” (popping a paper bag behind someone’s head, etc.) and creating the fear of imminent death by drowning (which is what waterboarding does)?

  • I suffer from panic disorder. It’s pretty harsh, believe me. I think I’m literally going to die….but I get over it.

  • “What John McCain suffered actually was torture. His bones were broken, for example. Induced panic isn’t torture.”

    John McCain, who as you acknowledge, was tortured. He disagrees with your assessment (which is based on?) and believes waterboarding also to be torture. I think I’ll take the word of the guy who knows first-hand what torture is over that of Rick “What can I say to stick my foot in my mouth today?” Santorum.

  • It’s based on what I referred to, and the fact that I myself have panic attacks and get over it. I don’t base the definition of torture on subjective determinations. Clearly it’s an issue of prudential judgment and it is certainly clear to me, someone who has severe panic attacks, that panic is not torture. If we say that we are not allowed to frighten our enemies, we’re in trouble. Big trouble.

  • Whether water boarding is torture or not, I’ll vote for Rick Santorum (were he to win the Primaries) over any liberal Democrat.

    Chopping living persons into pieces as testosterone-crazed Islamic fanatics do makes water boarding pale in comparison.

    What would the Catholic men who fought against the same kind of Islamic fanatics in the Battle of Leponto in 1571 have thought? Or those who fought against the Moors in the Battle of Tours 800 years previous to that?

  • “What would the Catholic men who fought against the same kind of Islamic fanatics in the Battle of Leponto in 1571 have thought? Or those who fought against the Moors in the Battle of Tours 800 years previous to that?”

    Paul, don’t you know that the Church miraculously began on December 8, 1965 with the conclusion of Vatican II? All the rest of that “old stuff” that happened in the almost twenty centuries before was sent down the memory hole and should have no bearing on us now! :)

  • You know, I used to admire Rick Santorum. I’ve now reassessed my opinion of him, not only because he condones an intrinsically evil act, but because he has resurrected this debate and now we’ll never hear the end of it from Shea and the red sweater lady.

    ;-)

  • Silly me! Obviously I am an unenlightened and unsophisticated techno-geek in the male-dominated nuclear power industry and am incapable of understanding the finer points of life. I guess I should go back to “nukes ‘R us” and my stupid equations, and stop studying any real history!

    ;-)

  • Is there anyone who has been waterboarded and doesn’t think it’s torture?

    I think most would agree that what Allen West did was torture, though all he did was create panic.

  • Lisa, my husband still is haunted by torture he endured to protect the innocent. He also had to voluntarily consent to torture in SERE training. I know people don’t accept that is torture, but I think it is. It changed him and he only did it so that he could endure willingly more torture at the hands of enemies and live to protect his country again. One could say a terrorist consents to torture if he refuses to give life-saving information. I’ve got a lot of cognitive dissonance on the issue. I just don’t know. I appreciate Santorum’s comments though. Are any of the ones speaking against waterboarding also saying they oppose head-shooting? I’m a little behind on this…

  • I’m sure there are people who would call any number of things “torture” that aren’t really torture. If we cannot induce panic in our enemies with the intention of saving millions of lives, we can’t go to war at all. It’s as simple as that.

  • Is it really your argument that waterboarding is a necessity of war?

  • Inducing panic is a necessity of war….and waterboarding induces panic. That’s all it does.

    We’re allowed to go to war to defend life. In other words, we may literally condone killing people in order to defend life, in war. But the critics of Santorum will say that we cannot even induce panic. How can we possibly go to war if we are not even allowed to induce panic in the enemy?

    The fact is, this is all blown out of proportion by people who have no appetite for ANY war at all, under any circumstances. Waterboarding is not torture.

  • Torture is wrong. I do not approve of torture.

    Enhanced interrogations saved innocent lives.

    Col. West (scare tactics) may have saved my (or your) son’s life.

    I thank God I do not need to make such decisions.

  • Inducing panic isn’t torture.

  • “The fact is, this is all blown out of proportion by people who have no appetite for ANY war at all, under any circumstances. Waterboarding is not torture.”

    I believe that to be false because no fewer than 3 people who I would not label as “hav[ing] no appetite for ANY war at all, under any circumstances” have stated in this thread that they believe waterboarding to be torture. (Didn’t you know? Don is considered St. Blogs’ resident war monger, and he stated above that he believes waterboarding to be torture.) John McCain, who, if anything, is as “pro-war” as any politician on the national scene today, believes waterboarding to be torture.

    Let’s not conflate the two issues of war and torture. Plenty of non-pacificists believe waterboarding to be torture.

  • It doesn’t matter if some (such as the liberals among us) have no apparent stomach for war or not. War will come just as surely as the sun rises and sets each day. Peace is not the norm, but the exception and that will remain the case until Jesus Christ returns to Earth. Indeed, one might even argue that it is the liberal’s lack of stomach for war that incites war in the first place. Compromise and capitulation are signs of weakness to ravenous wolves intent on ripping flesh apart.

    Indeed, iff the Islamic fanatics knew that attacking the World Trade Center would mean Mecca, Medina, and the other Islamic holy sites would each receive a thermonuclear detonation, wiping out the objects of Islamic adoration forever, then would the fanatics be so inclined to attack? Now no, I am NOT advocating the use of thermonuclear weapons (let’s not get ridiculous). But consider: the only way to defeat fanatics – whether today’s Islamists or those of 1571 – is overwhelming, irresistable, unstoppable force. Anything less than that will result in dhimmitude for Western society (at best). In all this, waterboarding is a mere gnat on the hind end of a great and monstrous rampaging elephant.

    Now I don’t like quoting Robert Heinlein because of his amorality and his atheism, but sometimes what he pointed out bears consideration. The reader may not agree, but this is certainly food for thought and the only thing that can stop this from being true is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ (but I repeat myself).

    “Anyone who clings to the historically untrue—and thoroughly immoral—doctrine that, ‘violence never settles anything’ I would advise to conjure the ghosts of Napoleon Bonaparte and the Duke of Wellington and let them debate it. The ghost of Hitler could referee, and the jury might well be the Dodo, the Great Auk and the Passenger Pigeon. Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history than has any other factor, and the contrary opinion is wishful thinking at its worst. Breeds that forget this basic truth have always paid for it with their lives and freedom.”
       - Colonel DuBois, Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein

  • In other words, we may literally condone killing people in order to defend life, in war.

    Without qualification or conditions? Without any restrictions on what we can do?

    So inducing panic can never be torture?

  • And to chalk waterboarding up to merely “inducing panic” is a little disengenuous. What action is being done to induce that panic?

    What is being done to the person being interrogated would be considered assault and battery if some person decided to do it to you or me. If a police officer did it to one of us after we were arrested, it would, in addition to being assault and battery, be considered police brutality.

    To violate the physical integrity of someone (beyond what is necessary to subdue, transport, and secure that individual) in order to obtain information from them sounds a whole lot like torture to me.

  • People vote against enhanced interrogation techniques to protect the innocent . . .

    Same people vote for Obama/Dems to kill (100 percent abortion all the time) the innocent . . .

    ‘Splain that to me, Swammee.

  • those people are confused

  • I’m sure there are people who would call any number of things “torture” that aren’t really torture.

    and that proves what? I am just as sure there are people who would call any number of things “not torture” that really are torture.

  • Defining torture based on the severity of physical or mental pain induced doesn’t get us very far, but, with or without magisterial assistance on the matter, we can nevertheless come to a pretty firm moral line that separates licit techniques from evil ones. This line is found by examining what the technique is intended to do and what it actually does to the will of the one interrogated. Whereas a legitimate technique are used to motivate the will, torture is the use of physical or mental pain to coerce the will of another. When coerced, the person ceases to act as a person. The decisions he makes are not his own; they are not made freely (in a moral sense) or rationally. Coercion renders a man something less than a man; it severs him from the pursuit of goodness. Once broken, the coerced person no longer acts will moral culpability; he becomes a slave to the interrogator’s will. As his mind and will are not his own, he cannot act with either true viciousness or true virtue. It is this puppet de-personalized state that Santorum and company would have those interrogated. They explicitly say so. Whether or not Santorum believes this process to be torture, it is what it is, and it is plainly depraved and evil, whether or not he calls it by its appropriate name.

  • Kyle, I think you’re comparing apples to oranges. The information was not gained during the waterboarding sessions themselves. The waterboarding was used to place the terrorists into a state of cooperation. Once they were cooperative, in a later, completely different setting, they gave the information leading us to bin Laden.

  • I would argue that physical integrity was never violated. I’m not a doctor but they had doctors present specifically on hand to prevent that from occurring.

  • Ms. Graas,

    If you think waterboarding is merely “induced panic” then you certainly don’t understand what waterboarding is.

    Waterboarding has been considered torture for centuries. It was not until the Bush administration until the question was even considered worthy of debate. If a foreign enemy waterboards a U.S. solider, they will be tried for the war crime of torture. If a deputy sheriff waterboards a suspect in their custody to get them to admit to a crime, they will be charged under U.S. law with committing torture. It is only when we want to do it to our own enemies that we suddenly find that it is not so bad after all.

    Christians should not be making excuses for torture, must less trying to redefine it in a way that makes it more palatable. I hope you’ll do more research on the topic so that you’ll see you are making a grave error in judgment.

  • I don’t understand war but there’s something primal in me as a mother that says I’d be a terrible one if told my husband not to coerce or even torture a murderer so that my child’s life could be saved, especially if that was the only way.

    It seems contrary to basic instinct. “No honey, you might hurt the murderer. Just let him kill Johnny so our conscience will be clear.” That just doesn’t work for me.

  • There are plenty of things that have been considered to be true for centuries that are not so. Waterboarding does not cause actual physical harm. It induces panic. If we can’t induce panic in the enemy then there would never been any justification for us to go to war at all. Clearly, in some circumstances, we can go to war. To suggest that when we do so, we may kill to repel aggressors but are forbidden from making anyone panic, seems ludicrous to me.

  • Stacy,

    As a father I feel a similar urge, but that’s just carte blanche for greenlighting consequentialism. Also, you’re using a “ticking time bomb” scenario which.. well.. I’ve never seen a real life example of (in other words, it’s never “the only way”)

  • “physical integrity was never violated”

    I can assure you that, as a legal matter, pouring water on someone against their will in order to simulate drowning violates that person’s physical integrity. In law, it is called battery.

    Assault is defined as an intentional act by one person that creates an apprehension in another of an imminent harmful or offensive contact. Intentionally creating an apprehension in someone that they are about to drown, in law, would be assault.

    Waterboarding, by any reasonable definition, would be considered an assault and battery if someone grabbed you off the street and did it to you.

  • The situation with al Qaeda was, and remains, a “ticking time bomb scenario”.

  • “The situation with al Qaeda was, and remains, a ‘ticking time bomb scenario.’”

    Wait till al Qaeda gets a nuke from North Korea and smuggles it into NYC, LA, Boston, or Miami.

    Tick Tock.
    Tick Tock.
    Tick Tock.

  • It very well could be the only way. A known murderer kidnaps your child. His partner stands in front of you about to run away. What do you do?

    God save us both from that, but I think there is value in thinking about this rather than just calling it consequentialism and easing out of it. I don’t think this is consequentialism anyway because we aren’t discussing the morality solely based on the consequences of these actions. There’s genuine interest in trying, fail as we might, to understand it as we should. I honestly can’t get my head around it.

  • Lisa,

    It doesn’t matter when an interrogated person gives up information. If the “state of cooperation” is arrived at through coercion, then you have a big moral problem. If you want a church document that supports this, check out Gaudium et Spes, which calls the infliction of physical or mental torments and attempts to coerce the will “infamies” that “poison society,” do “supreme dishonor to the Creator,” and “do more harm to those who practice them than to those who suffer from the injury.”

  • ***There are plenty of things that have been considered to be true for centuries that are not so. Waterboarding does not cause actual physical harm. It induces panic. ***

    So for centuries moral theologians, ethicists, solidiers, and other people who have reflected on the issue or have undergone it themselves were wrong. All that was happening was that we are “inducing panic.” That is not what waterboarding is, but you don’t seem willing to learn about the issue so there probably isn’t much point debating it.

    But since you are all for allowing “induced panic” I guess you would have no problem with mock executions. Am I right?

    ***If we can’t induce panic in the enemy then there would never been any justification for us to go to war at all.***

    It’s really hard to take your argument seriously when you make such silly comparisons. Extending your analogy, we can shoot prisoners in the head since that is allowed on the battlefield

    ***The situation with al Qaeda was, and remains, a “ticking time bomb scenario”.***

    No, the situation with al Qaeda is not a “ticking time bomb scenario.” To claim it is merely distorts the way that term is often used to justify rash actions because of lack of time to resort to more appropriate measures.

    You are starting to sound like a Machiavellian.

  • Could someone please answer this? I’m asking honestly. This is what I cannot reconcile.

    A known murderer kidnaps my child. His partner stands in front of my husband about to run away. What should he do?

  • “A known murderer kidnaps my child. His partner stands in front of my husband about to run away. What should he do?”

    Use my mini-14 to shoot his knee-caps off to stop him from running away, and then begin interrogation when he regains consciousness after passing out from pain.

    Sorry – when it comes to defending women and children, there are no rules. Any society that thinks otherwise is doomed to extinction.

  • “A known murderer kidnaps my child. His partner stands in front of my husband about to run away. What should he do?”

    Well, I would beat him to a pulp until he told me where my child was, and I would gladly pay the legal penalty for my actions, assuming that any jury would convict me which I think unlikely. However what is licit for a desperate parent does not, I think, necessarily apply to law enforcement or members of the militarily. I do consider these questions closer morally than others do. My objection to physical torture is largely on prudential grounds.

  • I know what I’d be tempted to do, Stacy, and I pray that I never face that scenario, and if I did, that I’d do what was right in the eyes of God.

    But if I succumbed to temptation and did what my nature dictated, I hope that afterward I would have the humility to not try to justify it as being legal or moral. I hope that I’d seek God’s forgiveness and mercy rather than seek his approval.

  • Whether or not one supported the CIA enhanced interrogation procedure known as waterboarding, it would be well to keep in mind that 1.it was legal at the time under U.S. law, and 2. it bears little if any resemblance to other uses of other procedures such as used by the Japanese in WW2 which would qualify as water toruture. Mark Theissen went to great lenghts in his book to make careful distinctions, which is something that opponents of recent U.S. policies seldom seem to do. Agree with the policies or not, Lisa is correct in that comparisons to our CIA program and other practices done by others in the past is a comparison of apples and oranges.

  • But yeah, my impulse would be the same as Paul’s and Don’s.

  • ***1.it was legal at the time under U.S. law***

    It was not legal at that time. We are signatories to the UN Convention Against Torture, which prohibits actions such as waterboarding.

    ***2. it bears little if any resemblance to other uses of other procedures such as used by the Japanese in WW2 which would qualify as water toruture. ***

    It is the exact same procedure.

    ***Mark Theissen went to great lenghts in his book to make careful distinctions, which is something that opponents of recent U.S. policies seldom seem to do. ***

    Mark Theissen is simply not credible on this issue. I debated him once about this issue and his ignorance about the topic was astounding. For example, when it was pointed out to him that waterboarding was also done during the Inquisition, he said that the problem with its application back then was not the use of drowning but the that the straps were too tight. (I kid you not, that was his actual defense.)

    ***Agree with the policies or not, Lisa is correct in that comparisons to our CIA program and other practices done by others in the past is a comparison of apples and oranges.***

    If this is true then please cite examples that prove this point. Theissen has never been able to do so but maybe you’ll have better luck.

  • Thanks Jay, Paul and Don. I’m almost comfortable accepting that I will never understand such evil and I could never figure out exactly what the right thing is to do in response.

  • Theissens’ book notes carefully the actual waterboarding practices of the CIA and compares them to what the Japanese did, such as pouring water directly down the throat of whoever they were torturing. There is no comparison. I doubt if the Japanese had doctors present to make sure no harm was done.
    Stuart Taylor, no Bush apologist,in his National Journal article of March 2010 described exactly why the procedures were legal. The UN torture convention was not self executing and required member states to apply it via their own laws which the US did in 1994, and which formed the basis of the EI program.
    I have no problem with opposing waterboarding or enhanced interrogation as a matter of principle, but to do as many critics do and charge war crimes against the previous administration, or advocate prosecution of CIA interrogators is unjust in my view.

  • As a side comment:
    It seems to me this argument has to be reserved for conservative republicans since we are civil enough to discuss the merits and techniques of enhanced interrogation.
    If we were progressive liberals with their philosophy of “the end justifies the means” it be a moot topic. Also, if it didn’t work out and our plan screwed things up and made things worse for everyone, so be it, our original intentions were honorable.
    Gosh, being a liberal is so easy on the conscience. They, and any RINO, have no place in this discussion.

  • My litmus test for torture is this:

    “If U.S. soldiers who were being held by enemy forces as POWs, would we want them to undergo _________?”

    I would not want my uncle, my cousin, or anyone in the military to be subjected to waterboarding by enemy forces. I believe it is torture to cause someone to believe that they are going to die, by drowning or otherwise. I very much disagree with Rick Santorum on this point.

    Lisa, if I could induce your panic attacks with a touch of a button, would you consider it torture if I were to push that button several times a day, or would you just “get over it”?

  • I agree with chris c. The war crimes charge is bogus. But I do think that the claim that waterboarding is not torture within the meaning of Catholic teaching’s prohibition is weak.

    In the end, most Catholic defenders of waterboarding are indeed engaged in one type of rationalization or in order to avoid the charge of consequentialism.

    As far as the ticking time bomb hypothetical goes, I am not impressed by the claim that it never actually occurs. Who cares? It is a useful test nonetheless.

    The bottom line for me is that the teaching that torture is intrinsically evil and never justified does not make sense. I nonetheless conform my will to the Church’s and simply accept the proposition as true.

    But, would I torture a guilty person in order to save the life of an innocent, almost certainly. People do all kinds of wrong things for good reasons, and I’m no exception. I’ll just ask for God’s mercy and roll on.

  • Stacy,
    The same section 80 of “Splendor of the Truth” that declares torture an intrinsic evil also calls slavery an intrinsic evil and yet God gives perpetual chattel slavery as a right to the Jews in Leviticus 25: 44-46….so while it is a deeply tragic institution in the hands of many humans, it cannot be an intrinsic evil if God gave it to the Jews because intrinsic evils like abortion are evil no matter the context or time in history. Ergo….section 80 of Splendor of the Truth has its problems intellectually which happens outside the realm of infallible texts. It’s calling of slavery an intrinsic evil is a mistake. Section 80 also did not qualify its condemnation of deportation as an intrinsic evil. In May of 2010, Italy deported two Muslim students who were planning to murder Pope Benedict. No Catholic writer I know fainted and declared that Benedict could not be protected by an kntrinsically evil act. And Benedict allowed his life to be protected by this act of deportation which lacked qualifiers in section 80 and if one leaves out qualifiers either for slavery or for deportation and then underlings rush in and say….well he didn’t mean all deportation nor all slavery since the beginning of time, then we might say
    John Paul then did not qualify torture either and that means as in the deportation case that saved Benedict’s life….that maybe some forms of torture might not be intrinsically evil just as Leviticus’s slavery could not have been intrinsically evil.
    In short, I have argued the very case you present of a brazen criminal who will not disclose where a dying kidnapped child is. He should receive not damage but pain which is fleeting either to his finger tips or teeth roots but the whereabouts of the child should come before his temporary pain. Want Scripture from the Holy Spirit? Proverbs 20:30 NAB Catholic Bible. ” Evil is cleansed away by bloody lashes, and a scourging to the inmost being.”. Try finding a Father of the Church or Doctor who states that Proverbs is voided by the New Testament as the judicial and ritual laws of the Pentateuch was per Aquinas.
    I hold for rare torture….Benedict obviously holds for some deportations….despite the seeming blanket condemnation of both as intrinsic evils in section 80 of “Splendor of the Truth”.

  • “I hold for rare torture….” well said Bill B., and for good reason when dealing with POW’s.
    But when it comes to the millions of aborting mothers to be and their well trained performers of enhanced birth control techniques torture is never an issue for consideration. The war on terror it seems has its bounds of engagement for us as a matter of fact, however the war on our unborn as directed also by the Commander in Chief should, has he so shallowly states, “be rare”. But those victims have no cry to be heard much less to challenge our judgment. Santorum would acknowledge this we all know. God help us.

  • Abortion is infallibly condemned in section 62 (memory serves?) of Evangelium Vitae wherein John Paul polled all Bishops worldwide which is a modern way around ex cathedra ( see Lawrence Welch/ Theological Studies/ 64.3 (2003) ).

    It is exceptionless ….but deportation, slavery, and torture are not….per Benedict’s example/ per Leviticus/ per Proverbs respectively.

  • Thanks Lisa for your post. It is very helpful.

    I state as a matter of fact that very solid, well-formed Catholics are advising Sen. Santorum. Both he and his fam. are serious and practicing Catholics. Pray for him and his fam. Many demands, pressures and advice are being given to him, but I have great hope that he will follow the Truth. Sen. Santorum is a good man, a good Catholic and a great American. Pray.

  • Re: Consequentialism……it’s not your average, every day, run of the mill story of consequentialism that we are referring to here. The intent is to save millions of human lives, and there is no intention at all to physically harm the person, but only to cause a state of panic in him so that he will give truthful information (again, not a forced confession to something he didn’t do) that will save those millions of lives.

  • Inasmuch as the Great Catholic Torture Debate has been ongoing since 2006, a few tidbits:

    In Counterfactual: A Curious History of the CIA (New Yorker March 29, 2010), Jane Meyer, author of The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals) fact-checks Mark Thiessen’s Courting Disaster: How the CIA Kept America Safe and How Barack Obama Is Inviting the Next Attack.

    Insofar as we are citing Fr. Brian Harrison, we should also take into account his clarification of his position on the matter of torture, in light of Pope Benedict’s reiteration “that the prohibition against torture ‘cannot be contravened under any circumstances’”. Still on the fence as to whether waterboarding constitutes torture per se, Fr. Harrison nonetheless asserts:

    However, having now become aware that Pope Benedict himself has personally reiterated this particular statement of the Compendium, I wish to state that I accept the Holy Father’s judgement on this matter, and so would not defend any proposal, under any circumstances, to use torture for any purpose whatsoever – not even to gain potentially life-saving information from known terrorists.

  • Waterboarding is not torture. It does not harm the body and is only a means of inducing panic. Doctors are present to ensure the body is not harmed. These points are moot, Christopher. If we were talking about pulling off someone’s fingernails, I would agree with you. I suppose that Rick Santorum would, as well……but that is not what we are talking about here. We’re talking about whether or not inducing panic is “torture”, not about whether torture is illicit. If we cannot induce panic in our enemies, we could never go to war at all, under any circumstances.

    Rick Santorum is a faithful Catholic who I truly believe would never knowingly advocate something that is opposed to Catholic dogma. The smears against him in the blogosphere as if he is someone foaming at the mouth to kill people is absurd in its falsehood. Clearly, there is no real concensus on this. The reason there isn’t is because we all value human dignity, not because some of us don’t value it and others do. I’m tired of faithful Catholics being cast as some kind of war-mongers when they reall are doing everything they can to save lives in accordance with Church teaching.

  • Lisa,

    I find your reduction of waterboarding to “inciting panic” and your “if it does no physical harm, it can’t be torture” line of reasoning to be dubious. However, I’ve no wish to kick the dead horse of a debate Catholic bloggers have had, ad nauseum, for the past six years.

    I did think it beneficial, inasmuch as you were marshaling the works of Fr. Harrison (with whom I’m familiar) as well as Mark Theissen, that the links I provided might be edifying.

    (See here for prior contributions on this topic).

  • Christopher,
    Can we assume that Fr. Brian Harrison under such a concept of total obedience to the Pope would have in 1520 AD totally supported Pope Leo X’s affirmation of burning Protestants to death in Exsurge Domine? Sure he would have. Transfer all hyper papal obedient Catholics that surrender their reason even in non infallible texts…transfer them back to 1520 AD and they would obey the very opposite idea that they are supporting right now. Isn’t that a type of moral relativism? Fr. Harrison is dependent for many aspects of his life like home and food on total conformity to his superior’s will. But that means that in 15th century, he would have supported the slavery of new world natives of Pope Nicholas V….and then in 1537, he would have done a complete about face under Pope Paul III on the very same matter.

  • ” . . . The smears against him in the blogosphere as if he is someone foaming at the mouth to kill people is absurd . . . ”

    I think it’s not absurd: It seems just one of the moral contortions sanctimonious Santorum detractors twist themselves into to justify (justification by socialism) voting for Obortion Obama.

    Enhanced interrogations saved innocent lives.

    Case closed.

  • Lisa
    Thanks….read it before. Exsurge Domine as incomprehensible dogmatically…..lol. But I agree that its non infallible…that’s my point about section 80.
    Lumen Gentium 25 with its “religious submission of mind and will” in the non infallible papal statements of weight was a bad thing in that it is half of a couplet and people forget the qualifiers within LG 25 ( Yves Congar had noted that Council statements can be incomplete….think Florence).
    The other half of the couplet is buried within Catholic moral theology tomes and concerns sincere, studious, prayerful dissent in the weighty non infallible (which is HV not section 80 of VS) ( see Volume I of “Way of the Lord Jesus”/ Germain Grisez/ page 854). Convert writers seem well aware of LG25 and not aware of the sincere dissent within moral theology tomes. Priests are aware of the latter while much of the Catholic internet blogging is not….because buying moral theology tomes is not common.

    Bottom line, sincere studious dissent is not mentioned in the catechism and is circumvented there in a deficient passage on conscience and seems excluded by LG25… but sincere studious dissent is mentioned in Catholic conservative moral theology tomes like Grisez’s of which convert writers on the net seem totally
    unaware. Having had Dominicans for 8 years and Jesuits for 8 years in Catholic schools….I’m aware of it and have Grisez’ mentioned book.

  • “However, having now become aware that Pope Benedict himself has personally reiterated this particular statement of the Compendium, I wish to state that I accept the Holy Father’s judgement on this matter, and so would not defend any proposal, under any circumstances, to use torture for any purpose whatsoever – not even to gain potentially life-saving information from known terrorists.”

    Christopher,

    Yes, Fr. Harrison agrees that all torture is intrinsically evil. Though the quote from Fr. Harrison that Lisa cites is different. There Fr. Harrison goes to the question of “what torture is.” So her use of it is not invalidated by your quote.

    This again is not to begin the debate about definitions either. I’ve no desire to enter the Torture Zone again.

  • bill,

    Grisez is interesting. He of course is used by those who support St. Joseph’s Hospital in Phoenix in their abortion case. The conception of the moral object as reduced purely to reason allows Grisez to support abortion in some cases where the Church has traditionally denied it. For example, Grisez supports the use of craniotomy where the Church in the past has denied that one can teach this as licit. This because he conceives of the moral object here as simply “…to alter the child’s physical dimension….” (Living a Christian Life, Vol 2 pg. 502)

    Of course this concept of the moral object as one of pure reason is taken up by Rhonheimer though in a somewhat different way in his work. (Though again the supporters of St. Joseph cite his work.)

    This is of interest only in that it does somewhat change the sense of direct and indirect actions and, conceivably, even change what is direct and indirect in actions such as waterboarding.

  • If a person has the mental capacity and will to die for their cause – as terrorists have shown to be willing to do in the past – why would these same terrorists have nor the will or mental capacity to withstand enhanced interrogation techniques? If coercion and just force were not allowed to enforce laws, and protect oneself as in the case of self-defense then we would have a disordered society, complete chaos, or even anarchy.

    “When coerced, the person ceases to act as a person. The decisions he makes are not his own; they are not made freely (in a moral sense) or rationally. Coercion renders a man something less than a man; it severs him from the pursuit of goodness.”

    @Kyle

    How do you know this? Proof? The person acts as a person in his or her’s reaction to the interrogation or those coercion techniques. The terrorist acts as a person when he decides to withhold the truth and must suffer the consequences just like when we sin or do wrong in society, we must suffer the consequences. Does the pursuit of goodness allow the detainee/terrorist to withhold vital, life-saving information? The pursuit of goodness would be to save the lives of the many. Every person’s will and mental capacity is different so to say that enhanced interrogation techniques constitute “torture” one would have to make the assumption that the person’s will was weak and that the person did not have the mental capacity to withstand the enhanced interrogation techniques and that would be hard to know for sure especially with their will and mental faculties having been trained to be willing to die for Jihad.

  • Phillip
    Grisez has anomalies (polygenism as possible) despite his being one of the most trenchant conservative intellectual supporters of Humanae Vitae in the US….believing it’s subject matter infallibly settled as universal ordinary magisterium…..but his sincere studious dissent in the non infallible is not a liberal anomalie. It can even be found in Catholic college libraries in old moral theology manuals galore and can be found with the often cited “expert” proviso in Ludwig Ott’s Intro online. How a cleric could be an expert in either sex or torture is another debate. Often clergy are over sheltered in things military or sexual unless they have a vocation after both…and become a theologian late in life.

  • He is indeed an interesting person. I have no idea how he feels about those using his name to justify what went on in Phoenix one way or another.

  • (1) All these arguments have been covered before, by people much more informed about the issue than Graas, who, as the thread demonstrates, has neither the ability nor willingness to discuss the issue in a substantive way. (She is lucky that Zippy Catholic has not descended upon this thread to eviscerate her “arguments.”)

    (2) Let’s not forget that around 100 detainees have died during the Enhanced Interrogation Techniques–an Orwellian castration of language if there ever was one. The fatuous suggestion of Graas that these techniques proceed antiseptically, in a controlled and prudent manner, and is neither tied to nor leads to even more extreme forms of coercion is belied by the facts themselves. This is prior to and separate from the question about whether waterboarding is ever hypothetically permissible, a question which I agree is difficult to answer.

    (3) Even if waterboarding were permitted under certain circumstances, our attitude as Catholics toward its execution must be one of–in Augustine’s words– “lamenting our necessities,” praying for those whose job it is to undertake such a horrendous office as well as those who must be subjected to it. The ease with which Graas writes off the physical and psychological violence involved in forcing the experience of drowning upon another human being as, simply, a “panic attack” is dehumanizing to those who have to carry it out and those who suffer it.

  • Gee whizz! I wish the Islamic fanatics had the same view of the impermissibility of torture as WJ has of water boarding.

    In fact, I wish the liberal progressive Demokrats had the same view of torturing an unborn baby to death as WJ has of water boarding.

    100 detainees died. Sorry. No tears from my eyes. The tears are reserved for the 60 million babies murdered by liberalism and progressivism, often by slow torture.

    BTW, Lisa Graas’s post was well thought out and didn’t include ad hominem attacks though I may not agree with her on every point.

  • Joe Carter, thank you.

  • How far does this teaching against torture go back? If it’s only as far as the teaching against capital punishment, then I can’t imagine it’s binding.

    Anyway, if torture is intrinsically wrong, and if waterboarding might or might not be torture, then we had better abstain. Abstaining becomes an even more attractive option when we see plenty of experts proclaiming how ineffective waterboarding generally is, i.e. it’s not even a good option to the consequentialist.

    I do find hilarious the contradictions in the liberal worldview on this one though. On the one hand extreme nuance: the fetus isn’t necessarily a person.. it’s just a growing.. thing, or if the fetus is a person then not all person’s have rights, or maybe killing an innocent person isn’t always wrong; and then on the other hand: waterboarding is torture and torture is always wrong.

  • What is even more hilarious – and simultaneously sad – is the fact that when al Qaeda succeeds in detonating a fission or fusion weapon in a major city like NYC, LA, Boston, Miami, etc., the ones who will weep and wail the most about 20 million murdered people and radioactive contamination lasting tens of thousands of years will be those self-same liberals who glory in the infanticide of the unborn as the right to choose.

    BTW, we know from Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Chernobyl (which wasn’t a fission detonation but a prompt criticality accident and a massive steam explosion, though the differences would probably be lost among most readers here) that the radioactive contamination won’t last even long enough for the next generation to begin re-settling, but that clarification isn’t the point. What is the point is that those who now decry water boarding will then be screaming about why the government didn’t do more water boarding to stop such a horrible event from ever happening in the first place.

    Arm chair theologians sitting in comfortable living rooms philosophizing about Papal documents and what is and isn’t infallible Church teaching aren’t the ones who have to track down these demonic killers sent directly from Satan’s hellish lair and stop their plans from seeing fruition.

    We all ought to thank God Almighty that the CIA and the US Armed Forces can still do their jobs in protecting our whining behinds from utter destruction.

  • She is lucky that Zippy Catholic has not descended upon this thread to eviscerate her “arguments.”

    Bringing Zippy back is about the only productive thing that would come of these arguments.

    Anyway, after the Rapture tomorrow, maybe some of these questions will get cleared up.

  • “Bringing Zippy back is about the only productive thing that would come of these arguments.”

    Please God no! That is all we need for another 250 comment torture thead with endless verbiage and no one changing their initial positions one iota. I have seen plenty of futile waste of time debates on Saint Blogs, but for posturing, question begging, moral preening, rank historical ignorance and sheer congealed folly none of them can touch the Odium Tormentum. (Phew! That felt good. Well, at least one good thing finally came from one of these torture threads!)

  • This may seem like dodging the question, but hey – name one good reason not to drop a link now and then!!! I suppose in honestly it’s a little bit in response to people being told to “listen to your mother.”

    http://www.acceptingabundance.com/2011/05/our-blessed-mother-and-torture.html

  • Stacy
    Stick to your kidnapped child example in these discussions. It’s wonderful. Some of the net debaters live in areas that Al Qaeda will never attack….which is 99% of the US. That makes the debate one in which they have less skin in the game. The kidnapped child example can return them to identifying with real reality and loss and return them to common sense.
    Did Christ use torture when he made a whip and drove men from the temple…check the catechism definition of torture…”physical violence”…to….”freighten opponents”….He did. (Please…no one from the radical non violence group post me that textually we can’t prove He actually hit them….as though mobile retailing men of that stone throwing period fled one man feinting…pretending that He might hit them. Please…..don’t torture me or the scriptures.)

  • The bottom line for me is simply this: there is a HUGE difference between showing a little mercy to people who do something immoral out of genuine desperation, or in good faith belief that it was the right thing to do, and declaring said action to be justified and acceptable for everyone as a matter of law or policy. Hence the saying “hard cases make bad law.”

    It’s one thing to decide that someone who out of desperation tortures the abductor of their child into revealing the child’s location, or who gets rough with a terrorist in order to find a ticking time bomb, ought not to be punished to the full extent of the law as if they were a sadistic serial rapist or murderer. Obviously they are not in the same league as a hardened criminal and should not be treated as if they were. From a moral point of view a person in that predicament may not have acted with the sufficient reflection and full consent of the will necessary for mortal sin, which means they aren’t necessarily going to go to hell for what they did.

    However, it is another thing entirely to decide that they committed NO sin or crime at all, or to decide that their actions should be declared legal. (That is how we went from abortion only in really “hard” cases like rape, incest, and saving the mother’s life to abortion on demand for any reason or no reason at all.) Let’s not start down the same slippery slope with regard to torture. It’s still a sin and it should NEVER be endorsed or legal as a matter of policy; but that doesn’t mean there is no room for mercy when people step over the line under extreme duress.

  • Elaine,
    There are very few infallible declarations by the Church on morals. Divorce’s condemnation within the Council of Trent is one. Abortion is one in section 62 of Evangelium Vitae and uses a shortened version of the IC infallible word formula wording…Euthanasia is another in that same encyclical with the same formula. Torture has no such dogmatic level condemnation and torture was used by the Church itself within eccelesiastical courts as light torture and otherwise often through papally deputed seculars in Inquisitions from 1253 AD til a Pope stopped it for the papal lands in 1816. That time span rules out it’s being infallible in the ordinary magisterium.
    Few are the infallible moral declarations because most simple moral questions are inerrantly treated by the Bible and the ten commandments and need no
    reaffirmation by the Church. St. Alphonsus di Ligouri pointed out in his “Theologia
    Moralis” that on less obvious levels of the natural law, even saints have differed
    on what is and is not a sin. He was probably thinking of usury and slavery. John Noonan pointed out that while about 8 Popes opposed slavery…a number of Popes and the curia and the decretals permitted four exceptions which were always supported in Catholic universities which is why the curia was still answering dubia on slavery into the 19th century and why as late as 1960, Iorio’s 5th edition Theologia Moralis was still listing exceptions to slavery’s immorality.
    In short some questions are not as settled as you are inferring about torture.
    The Church used it for 6 centuries techinically and with decreasing frequency but that is a bar to seeing John Paul’s condemnation and Vatican II’s as the last word since both are recent though Pope Nicholas I was a precursor as was the 1816 halt in the papal lands.

    The reason Catholics are actually allowed to use their own brain on some issues is the historical fact that thoughtless obedience by Catholics in the past made Church mistakes like burnings at the stake….last longer than they should have.

  • “I hold for rare torture.”

    Yep. Safe, legal, and rare.

    For ticking time bombs, kidnapped children, and my situation.

  • Comparing torture to abortion Tom is fatuous as even a cursory glance at the history of the Church would illustrate. The Church never commanded abortions in defense of the faith for over a millenium. The Church has always condemned abortion. The Church’s record on torture, to put it charitably, has been mixed. (There, that should be good for at least another 50 comments going futilely back and forth!)

  • Right on Tom K.
    If it’s good enough for Obama’s “life stand” for mothers to be it’s good enough for the country’s “security stand” to remain terrorist free. Yep again.

  • Tom is not comparing torture to abortion. He is showing the hypocracy of the left in its reasoning for the value of life. Killing our young individually before they arrive is a viable choice because we suffer it to be rare and legal. But to avoid the loss of possibly thousands of those alive with the use of rare but legal enhanced interrogation is suffered to be harmful to an individual and thus immoral. That’s the point to be considered is it not?

  • Bill Sr.:

    No, Donald’s right on that point. I long ago noticed that torture is abortion for conservatives.

    Though I don’t see how the Church’s records on the two makes the fact that conservatives speak about torture the way liberals speak about abortion fatuous.

  • Thank you Bill Bannon. My husband taught me that because he says it is what is on a man’s mind when he is risking his life to protect innocent people.

    So my husband’s sat me down and explained how it feels to be waterboarded. He says it’s not torture, after all the other things done it was nothing, an “Oh good my face will be washed.” I defer to him. I’ve never been waterboarded. He also says sleep deprivation with a newborn is worse. He would know.

    I disagree about the abortion comparison. The left argues that illegal abortion forces a woman to remain pregnant against her will and that is torture. With the right, the starting point for both arguments is the protection of innocent life. There’s a big difference between a baby and a grown man/woman who wants to kill a baby.

    The debate should not be about whether torture is moral, but about what is torture and what is not. I think if you would tell me that I had the obligation to remain pregnant (I do!) that I can also tell a murderer that he will have to have water on his face if he won’t talk.

    Just my two cents…

  • Stacy makes an interesting point re: abortion and the left’s claim that pregnancy is torture. What is “torture”? We have to be careful about what we define as “torture”, particularly considering how the Left co-opts everything they can to promote their agendas.

    Thanks for sharing that about your husband’s experience, Stacy. Very instructive. I wrote a follow-up at my blog about other POWs disputing McCain’s claim. They also say waterboarding is not torture.

    http://lisagraas.com/2011/05/20/former-pows-to-john-mccain-waterboarding-is-not-torture/

    How about this? Is this torture? Should this make us laugh? Or should we call Child Protective Services?
    Charlie Bit Me — http://youtu.be/_OBlgSz8sSM

  • Exactly Lisa. I have also heard it said that infant baptism (you know, hold them against their will at an incline and pour water on their face while they cry) is torture. The entire argument resides in the definition. Of course “torture” is immoral but Baptism is not torture. It’s obligation and sanctifying grace.

  • To all
    On this area of how definition is nearly everything, Janet E Smith now at First Things has an essay on her breaking with Aquinas and Augustine and their….”no lies evah” position…. which break by her delighted me because Scripture praises Judith in her subterfuge of Holofernes wherein her victory was dependent on the fibs as was Jehu’s victory over the idolaters. Oddly then it’s Scripture and Janet E. Smith versus Aquinas and Augustine…precipitated by her lingering thoughts on the Planned Parenthood incident.

  • “He also says sleep deprivation with a newborn is worse. He would know.”

    I have never felt more like a zombie than the month following the birth of my twin sons!

  • Tom K,
    One distinction is that waterboarding was rare in the Bush administration (used on three individuals) while there is nothing rare about abortion in the states, and the D’s will do nothing to make it rare.

    So at least when the pro-waterboarding conservative says he wants w.b. to be rare he’s being credible.

  • I noticed that Tom’s blog http://disputations.blogspot.com/ is all about bashing the Republicans, but can he be bothered to say a word of reprimand against those liberal Democrat Komrade heroes of choice for everyone? He’s got many blog entries and maybe in a few perhaps he has. I haven’t read all of them.

    So what about liberal Democrat Catholic Nancy Pelosi and her support of torturing unborn babies or legalizing homosexual filth as marriage? Or liberal Democrat Catholic John Kerry? Or liberal Democrat Catholic Dennis Kucinich? Or liberal Democrat Catholic Andy Cuomo who is divorced and living in open sin with his concubine and receiving Holy Communion?

    There is NO similarity between evacuating the brains out of an unborn baby or dismembering his limbs or suctioning his body out with a vacuum cleaner as these pseudo-Catholics politicians support, and water boarding. None. Zero. Zip point squat. It is obfuscation and deception to say otherwise.

    St. Paul dealt well with hypocrisy like this when he handed Alexander and Hymenaeus over to Satan to be taught not to blaspheme. Next to those pro-abortion liberal Democrat characters, the Catholic Republicans whom Tom derides in his blog for their stand about water boarding are knights in shining armor. God bless them and may one of them defeat the Obamanation of Desolation in 2012!

    PS, my dream team is Palin and Bachmann. Bright. Bold. Beautiful! The liberals would have a stroke. And babies would be saved while Islamic fanatics intent on America’s destruction would be hunted down and given their just deserts. No more bowing to the Saudi prince!

  • “PS, my dream team is Palin and Bachmann. Bright. Bold. Beautiful! The liberals would have a stroke. And babies would be saved while Islamic fanatics intent on America’s destruction would be hunted down and given their just deserts. No more bowing to the Saudi prince!”

    I love and am in support of your dream team.

    Your comment is spot on!

  • Palin is bad for the same reason Paul is.
    http://lisagraas.com/2011/05/22/why-are-some-catholics-supporting-ron-paul/

    State powers don’t trump our inalienable rights.

    The only two candidates who understand and can articulate subsidiarity properly are Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum.

    Saying state powers trump our rights violates subsidiarity just as much as socialism does. I used to be a Palinista. I have blogged and blogged and blogged on this topic hoping she would listen and change her position. She hasn’t and she won’t.

    I’m going with Rick Santorum. Bachmann is my second choice.

  • Also, Palin appointed a pro-abort to the Alaska Supreme Court because the other option opposed her on environmental policy.

    Also, Palin supports the morning after pill. (Couric interview, 2008 presidential campaign)

    Also, Palin supports “rights” based on sexual preference.

    I could go on, but you get the picture.

  • I honestly haven’t taken a critical look at each of their records and the differences between Bachmann and Palin but I thought that they pretty much agreed on a majority of the issues.

    “State powers don’t trump our inalienable rights.” Which state powers does Palin say trumps inalienable rights?

  • Bachman and Santorum have one thing in common: they have zero chance of getting the nomination. I suspect they are running for Veep, but neither of them have any chance of getting that either due to their marginal political skills, almost no national following and the desire of the nominee to avoid a Veep who will give endless opportunities for “gotcha” headlines in the lamestream press over mistatements and gaffes. I like the way Bachman votes and Santorum was a champion of the unborn in the Senate, but political reality is political reality.

    Sarah Palin, if she wants the nomination, will be the nominee, and I think she has a better than even chance of beating Obama next year in 2012, absent a miraculous recovery of the economy. If Palin is unacceptable to pro-lifers than the pro-life movement has no chance of ever having a president acceptable to it, but I think Lisa’s view of Palin is a distinct minority viewpoint among pro-lifers who overwhelmingly view Palin as a champion of the pro-life cause.

  • [Stacy Transacos]: “So my husband’s sat me down and explained how it feels to be waterboarded. He says it’s not torture, after all the other things done it was nothing, an “Oh good my face will be washed.” I defer to him. I’ve never been waterboarded. He also says sleep deprivation with a newborn is worse. He would know.”

    Stacy — you seek to compare your husband’s experience of waterboarding during (SERE?) training with that imposed upon prisoners during interrogation as “the same thing.”

    For what it’s worth, according to a declassified Justice Department memo describing the procedure, the CIA applied waterboarding to detainees “in a different manner” than the technique used in SERE training.

    Steven G Bradbury, May 10 2005, p.42:
    In SERE training, the technique is confined to at most two applications (and usually only one) of no more than 40 seconds each. Here, there may be two sessions, of up to two hours each, during a 24-hour period, and each session may include multiple applications, of which six may last 10 seconds or longer (but none more than 40 seconds), for a total time of application of as much as 12 minutes in a 24-hour period. Furthermore, the waterboard may be used up to five days during the 30-day period for which it is approved
    Steven G Bradbury, May 10 2005 p.41:
    51. The IG Report noted that in some cases the waterboard was used with far greater frequency than initially indicated, see IG Report at 5, 44, 45,103, 104 and also that it was used in a different manner. See id. at 37 (”The waterboard technique was different from the technique described in the DOJ opinion and used in the SERE training. The difference was in the manner in which the detainee’s breathing was obstructed. At the SERE school and in the DoJ opinion, the subject’s airflow is disrupted by by the firm application of a damp cloth over the air passages; the Interrogator applies a small amount of water to the cloth in a controlled manner. By contrast, the Agency interrogator… applies large volumes of water to a cloth that covered the detainee’s mouth and nose. One of the psychologists/interrogators acknowledged that the Agency’s use of the technique is different than that used by in SERE training because it is ‘for real’ and is ‘more poignant and convincing’.”) The Inspector General further reported that “OMS contends that the expertise of the SERE psychologist/interrogators on the waterboard was probably misrepresented at the time, as the SERE waterboard experience is so so different from the subsequent Agency usage as to make it almost irrelevant. [c]onsequently, according to OMS, there was no a priori reason to believe that applying the waterboard with the frequency and intensity with which it was used by the psychologist/interrogators was either efficacious or medically safe.”
    Id. at 21 n.26.

    Reportedly, “the CIA used the waterboard ‘at least 83 times during August 2002′ in the interrogation of Zubaydah, IG Report at 90, and 183 times during March 2003 in the interrogation of KSM” — far more frequently than the CIA’s own internal guidelines for the procedure.

    Your husband had the benefit of knowing — in spite of the momentary experience, undoubtedly uncomfortable — that this was

    1) a training exercise;
    2) that those inflicting it were only masquerading as “the enemy”;
    3) that his health and welfare were of primary concern
    4) that the experience would end.

    As the memo states, the effectiveness of the technique as applied by the Agency was different — and intentionally such.

    So no, I don’t buy your dismissal of waterboarding based on your husband’s experience.

  • BTW — Lisa, considering your reduction of waterboarding to “inducing panic”, I’m curious whether you would answer JoAnna’s question:

    Lisa, if I could induce your panic attacks with a touch of a button, would you consider it torture if I were to push that button several times a day, or would you just “get over it”?

    It is quite possible break a person’s will without leaving scars. All the better, no trace evidence.

  • “Reportedly, “the CIA used the waterboard ‘at least 83 times during August 2002? in the interrogation of Zubaydah, IG Report at 90, and 183 times during March 2003 in the interrogation of KSM” — far more frequently than the CIA’s own internal guidelines for the procedure.”

    The number of repetitions would seem to indicate that either Zubaydah was very strong willed, or that waterboarding as a form of torture is so mild as to be relatively ineffective.

  • But here are Palin’s pro-life comments in that interview. While she didn’t categorically condemn taking the morning after pill she didn’t show support of it either. Although, she is in favor of contraception. I would classify the morning after pill as more than just contraception since it can lead to abortions. She actually skirted around Katie’s question on that.

    Couric: If a 15-year-old is raped by her father, do you believe it should be illegal for her to get an abortion, and why?

    Palin: I am pro-life. And I’m unapologetic in my position that I am pro-life. And I understand there are good people on both sides of the abortion debate. In fact, good people in my own family have differing views on abortion, and when it should be allowed. Do I respect people’s opinions on this. Now, I would counsel to choose life. I would also like to see a culture of life in this country. But I would also like to take it one step further. Not just saying I am pro-life and I want fewer and fewer abortions in this country, but I want them, those women who find themselves in circumstances that are absolutely less than ideal, for them to be supported, and adoptions made easier.

    Couric: But ideally, you think it should be illegal for a girl who was raped or the victim of incest to get an abortion?

    Palin: I’m saying that, personally, I would counsel the person to choose life, despite horrific, horrific circumstances that this person would find themselves in. And, um, if you’re asking, though, kind of foundationally here, should anyone end up in jail for having an … abortion, absolutely not. That’s nothing I would ever support.

    Couric: Some people have credited the morning-after pill for decreasing the number of abortions. How do you feel about the morning-after pill?

    Palin: Well, I am all for contraception. And I am all for preventative measures that are legal and save, and should be taken, but Katie, again, I am one to believe that life starts at the moment of conception. And I would like to see …

    Couric: And so you don’t believe in the morning-after pill?

    Palin: … I would like to see fewer and fewer abortions in this world. And again, I haven’t spoken with anyone who disagrees with my position on that.

    Couric: I’m sorry, I just want to ask you again. Do you not support or do you condone or condemn the morning-after pill.

    Palin: Personally, and this isn’t McCain-Palin policy …

    Couric: No, that’s OK, I’m just asking you.

    Palin: But personally, I would not choose to participate in that kind of contraception

  • “I noticed that Tom’s blog…is all about bashing the Republicans…”

    Though he has transitioned away from the claim that voting for a pro-waterboarding Repub. equals material cooperation and this equals no vote for Repubs. He is now working appropriately to nominate a solid candidate. I’m not sure who that would be.

    That is quite a move in a positive direction however.

  • What a pro-life person would have done would have been to stand against abortifacients like the morning after pill. Santorum and Bachmann would have stood against it…because they’re pro-life. Palin supports it. They don’t…because they’re pro-life.

  • “the CIA applied waterboarding to detainees “in a different manner” than the technique used in SERE training.”

    Though I can’t find the source now, it appears that waterboarding in training is not applied in the manner described in training manuals. I recall one trainer describing how the method in training pure and simple is to “break the will” of the trainee. To that end they used quite a bit of force. Thus perhaps Stacy’s husband’s feelings about SERE training in her May 19th, 10:49 post.

  • “Though he has transitioned away from the claim that voting for a pro-waterboarding Repub. equals material cooperation and this equals no vote for Repubs.”

    If by “tansitioned away from,” you mean “hasn’t repeated this week,” then yes.

    But voting for a pro-waterboarding Republican is material cooperation in evil, whether the Republican realizes it or not, and I personally will not vote for a pro-waterboarding Republican. My vote isn’t worth the cooperation.

  • @Tom K

    “But voting for a pro-waterboarding Republican is material cooperation in evil, whether the Republican realizes it or not, and I personally will not vote for a pro-waterboarding Republican. My vote isn’t worth the cooperation.”

    But are you willing to vote for a pro-abortion Democrat which is with absolute certainty would be considered material cooperation with an intrinsic evil, abortion, unlike waterboarding which has not been condemned by the Church and has not been named as being evil by the Church?

  • “I noticed that Tom’s blog http://disputations.blogspot.com/ is all about bashing the Republicans, but can he be bothered to say a word of reprimand against those liberal Democrat Komrade heroes of choice for everyone?”

    Darn those liberal Democrat Komrade heroes of choice for everyone.

  • “But are you willing to vote for a pro-abortion Democrat which is with absolute certainty would be considered material cooperation with an intrinsic evil, abortion, unlike waterboarding which has not been condemned by the Church and has not been named as being evil by the Church?”

    No.

    Are you willing to put up with Republicans nominating candidates that are only 70%, or 30%, or even 10% as evil as the Democratic nominees, in perpituity?

  • And just to be clear on my opinion on the “waterboarding has not been named as being evil by the Church” angle: See “appeal to finer detail” and “see no evil” in “The Gasping Grimoire.”
    http://zippycatholic.blogspot.com/2010/02/gasping-grimoire.html

  • First of all if you think that enhanced interrogation techniques are evil then your view of what is considered evil is skewed. I don’t support candidates who are evil, period. So, are you saying that someone shouldn’t support less evil? Or someone who is less evil than Obama? And there’s a lot in the field who aren’t evil, like Obama is. Anyone who voted against the Born Alive Act is EVIL.

  • Tom K,
    Voting for a pro-water-boarding Republican is not a material cooperation with evil, and neither is voting for a pro-abort Democrat for that matter.
    As far as voting for the less imperfect of candidates, well Jesus ain’t runnin’, champ. So, yeah, I’m willing to “put up with” Republicans nominating candidates that are less evil as the Dem nominees insomuch as suicide is not a moral option. Meanwhile I do my best to influence both parties to be “less evil” as you would seem to put it, though the Dems seem to not be interested in what I have to say.
    Cheers!

  • That’s a valid point Christopher, and it gets at the definition. What Donald said makes sense. Trainers waterboard to strengthen the body and mind so that if a soldier is captured he can Survive, Evade, Resist and Escape – to do what? To live another day to protect the innocent, you and me.

    In interrogation, the point is to break the will – why? Because the person wants to kill innocent people, you and me.

    Are interrogators are waterboarding just to be cruel and wield power unjustly? If yes, that’s wrong. If no, then…

    If someone were pushing Lisa’s buttons just to be cruel, that would be wrong. If Lisa had made it known she wanted to kill innocent people (she never would) and pushing that button would break her will and get her to stop, is that wrong? And if it is, then is holding her in prison also wrong? Both are a violation of personal freedom.

    I feel like everyone arguing against waterboarding is arguing “It’s evil, and if you support it, you support evil.” But no one’s made the case that it is in fact evil.

  • Tom’s position of in regard to his view that voting for a candidate who supports waterboarding being material cooperation with evil goes well beyond what then Cardinal Ratzinger wrote in 2004 in regard to Catholics voting for pro-aborts:

    “[N.B. A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate’s permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favour of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons.]”

    In the same letter, Cardinal Ratzinger also wrote this:

    “3. Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia.”

    http://www.priestsforlife.org/magisterium/bishops/04-07ratzingerommunion.htm

  • Tom,

    Perhaps by material cooperation you are referring to what has traditionally been called “remote” cooperation. In that case one might be in material cooperation though without any moral culpability. Much as a janitor of a hospital who cleans a surgical suite does not bear any moral culpability with the abortions that are performed there.

    Now if you mean proximate material cooperation which would entail moral culpability, then I believe, as pointed out at two other posts, that you are not in conformity with the teaching of the Church.

  • Christopher Blosser,

    An excellent resource. http://waterboarding.org/

    Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

  • Donald ol boy,

    You’re way off on the GOP nominee. Palin doesn’t have a chance, and I thank God for that because she would have even less of a chance versus Obama. No one has higher negatives with indies and Dems than Palin.

  • “Tom’s position of in regard to his view that voting for a candidate who supports waterboarding being material cooperation with evil goes well beyond what then Cardinal Ratzinger wrote in 2004 in regard to Catholics voting for pro-aborts.”

    My position is this:

    1. Voting for a candidate who supports evil is material cooperation with that evil. This is precisely Cardinal Ratzinger’s assertion in the 2004 letter.

    2. Torture is evil. This is precisely the Church’s teaching.

    3. Waterboarding is torture. This is my judgment, arguments for which have been posted around the web for the past eight years.

    “Perhaps by material cooperation you are referring to what has traditionally been called “remote” cooperation. In that case one might be in material cooperation though without any moral culpability.”

    I mean material cooperation. How remote the material cooperation is, and how much moral culpability is involved, will depend on each person’s circumstances.

  • Stacy:

    “If someone were pushing Lisa’s buttons just to be cruel, that would be wrong. If Lisa had made it known she wanted to kill innocent people and pushing that button would break her will and get her to stop, is that wrong?”

    You tell me. If if you decided it was morally legit to induce panic attacks at the push of a button, once, twice, a dozen times, at what point would you stop?

    The question was posed, I think, to counter Lisa’s dismissal of waterboarding as “induced panic” and dismissal of psychological torture (“[McCain's] bones were broken. Induced panic isn’t torture.”).

    Bu on these grounds, would it be acceptable to threaten harm (or execution) of a prisoner’s wife and and children and to thereby “induce panic” by these means in a “ticking time bomb” scenario? — Even if we didn’t actually intend to carry out the threat?

    After all, it’s only psychological. No real harm is intended. And we really can’t be certain of the actual after-effects, which are sure to vary from individual to individual.

    Again, you tell me.

    “And if it is, then is holding her in prison also wrong? Both are a violation of personal freedom.”

    Obviously, the use of force to break the will cannot be equated with lawful imprisonment. Ditto for capital punishment (which I happen to support).

    The implementation of the techniques we are now considering is another matter entirely.

    Take sleep deprivation, for instance — which, like Don, we can blithely compare to our experience as parents. (I’ve been there as well). Well, there is sleep deprivation . . . and, to cite another example from reality, there is keeping a man awake for six days straight, in a standing position with his arms above heart level, wearing diapers so as to forbid him bathroom breaks, in the attempt to break his will.

    At what point does this cross the line into torture? And if this same treatment were visited on our own soldiers under captivity, what would we consider it?

    Even if it doesn’t rise to the level of torture but remains simply “cruel and inhumane”, should we be doing it?

    According to the Church, the starting point of the debate on torture (or “enhanced interrogation” which may or may not be torture) is human dignity.

    The Geneva Conventions prohibits that POWS be “violence to life and person, in particular … mutilation, cruel treatment and torture, . . . outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment.”

    The argument is made that because terrorists aren’t identified as legitimate soldiers, but rather criminals, they are exempt from such ordinary prohibitions. (I think this is a rather facile way of getting around our basic obligation to provide humane treatment.

    Is it true that “desparate times call for desparate measures” — or should we insist on treating our prisoners in the same manner as we would expect our enemies to treat our own soldiers?

    If your own husband were captured by the enemy, would they be justified in waterboarding him (in the same manner) if they suspected him of harboring pertinent “actionable intelligence” that might protect them from possible attack?

  • This statement is coming from a man who didn’t think he defied his Pro Life Stance when he and the President came to Philadelphia to stump for an endorse the looing in the Primaries CHOICE Specter over the the then PRO LIFE Toomey the week-end before the 2004 Pa. Republican Primary==== Why,,,well,,,,,because as his office explained,,,,,because the President told him to do so and Toomey would not have won in the primary/

    So, why even wonder what Santorum’s stance would be on waterboading,,,,they can change upon demand.

  • Oh Christopher, you ask great questions and I appreciate that you don’t just call me evil or stupid because I’m trying to think.

    Somewhere up there I posted where I am right now, but since I’m really into link dropping and stat obsession, here again: http://www.acceptingabundance.com/2011/05/our-blessed-mother-and-torture.html

    How much is too much to break the will? I don’t know, but that’s a great question, that’s how I want to think about it.

    I don’t know, but I go back to what I would do in the scenario in my link, if it were my own child. Otherwise I’d be hypocritical. I can’t imagine I’d be upset if a man were less than delicate with someone trying to kill my baby. The CCC says “torture which uses physical or moral violence” is contrary to human dignity. Same questions…

    What is humane treatment for someone who wants to murder people? I honestly have a hard time being more compassionate for the murderer than the child or innocent person. Protecting the innocent is humane too.

    If my husband were a murderer, yes I’d say the enemy trying to stop him would be justified in waterboarding him for information…but my husband is not a murderer and neither are our soldiers. How is shooting someone in the head moral but waterboarding isn’t? That’s another thing I can’t reconcile.

  • “Palin doesn’t have a chance, and I thank God for that because she would have even less of a chance versus Obama. No one has higher negatives with indies and Dems than Palin.”

    She is the best natural politician I have seen since Reagan Francis. If she wants the nomination she will have it. I have been participating in Republican party politics since Reagan ran in 1976, and I have absolutely no doubt of that. As for Obama, by this time next year if the economy is still stuck in the mud, he is toast in November.

  • Donald, I do think Palin is a natural politician,,,,but I think she has lived her life on “Cliff Notes” versions at best, and lacks the self-discipline to go any further than she already has. Tell me how her quitting her job as Governor and gong to Fox News was a sacrifice for her county??? I don’t join any of her detractors that call her dumb. She is a smart, attractive lady who is too lazy to learn anything hard, and considers anything she doesn’t know as not important.

    What may be telling is a political Cat Fight that could be brewing should Bachman enter the race. I am not sure if Sara Palin is in the I want to run Camp as she is in the “I don’t want _______ to run and overshadow me Camp.
    Reagan knew he had to compromise, Palin can’t, and I honestly believe Sara Palin’s Tea Party Pit Bull Attitudes would have turned the Ronald Reagan we all admire into minced meat if he entered the Republican Arena today.

    Ronald Reagan was far to kind and Nancy was far to perceptive to ever have allowed themselves part of that culture of today’s Tea Party inspired base of today.

  • “1. Voting for a candidate who supports evil is material cooperation with that evil. This is precisely Cardinal Ratzinger’s assertion in the 2004 letter”

    No, he specifically restricted his statement to abortion and euthanasia and highlighted these issues as different from other issues. He then noted that even voting for a candidate who holds these positions would not involve material cooperation in evil if the Catholic did not vote for the candidate because of their support for abortion or euthanasia, but for other proportionate reasons. That is a mile off what you are claiming here in regard to torture.

    “2. Torture is evil. This is precisely the Church’s teaching.”

    Then the Church was involved in a great deal of evil for a very long time indeed and not in the sense of a Pope or some other ecclesiatical official engaging in private sin. Torture was utilized by the Church for centuries in the fight against heresy and by the Popes as rulers of the Papal States. Pope Pius VII officially abolished torture in the Papal States in 1816, but unofficially popes continued to use torture as a law enforcement mechanism until the dissolution of the Papal States in 1870.

    Now I am against physical torture for various prudential reasons, but the morality of an act of torture depends like any use of force on the circumstance. The Nazis torturing a priest to reveal the location of hidden Jews is obviously evil; a desperate parent pummelling a kidnapper to reveal the whereabouts of a kidnapped child obviously is not. The condemnation of all torture as evil is a product of the Church under Pope John XXIII. Time will tell whether that blanket condemnation of torture will be regarded as a teaching of the Faith, or whether it will take rank with the actions of most Popes and Councils as something that future generations of Catholics will allow to be buried in the sea of time, to join such products as the Syllabus of Errors of Pio Nono, the papal condemnation of Magna Charta and much of the Church teaching against usury.

    “3. Waterboarding is torture. This is my judgment, arguments for which have been posted around the web for the past eight years.”

    I actually agree with that since it is physical force used to elicit information, although as torture goes it is a fairly mild manifestation of it.

  • “Tell me how her quitting her job as Governor and gong to Fox News was a sacrifice for her county???”

    She quit Jane to get away from endless nuisance law suits filed by Democrat hacks that were bankrupting her family, and to make an immense amount of money before making her presidential run, either in 2012 or 2016. She has also used the time to build a formidable national organization and to earn political I.O.U.s from Republicans she has supported for office around the country. If she eventually announces her run for the White House she will have a well funded volunteer organization in place in every state.

    “I don’t join any of her detractors that call her dumb. She is a smart, attractive lady who is too lazy to learn anything hard, and considers anything she doesn’t know as not important.”

    Most politicians are not policy wonks. Palin is a policy wonk in the area of energy which she knows cold. However there is nothing she needs to know about leadership which is where most politician fail.

    “What may be telling is a political Cat Fight that could be brewing should Bachman enter the race. I am not sure if Sara Palin is in the I want to run Camp as she is in the “I don’t want _______ to run and overshadow me Camp.”

    Bachman does not have a fraction of the political skills of Palin and is not a serious candidate for President. Palin is giving signs now that she is going to run. My guess is that she will keep all of us guessing until August.

    “Reagan knew he had to compromise, Palin can’t, and I honestly believe Sara Palin’s Tea Party Pit Bull Attitudes would have turned the Ronald Reagan we all admire into minced meat if he entered the Republican Arena today.

    Ronald Reagan was far too kind and Nancy was far to perceptive to ever have allowed themselves part of that culture of today’s Tea Party inspired base of today.”

    Please. I lived through the Reagan era. Reagan was regarded as the devil incarnate by liberal Democrats during his 1980 run, and until he clobbered Carter they all thought that he was an out of it old fool who was going to be easy to beat. Reagan would have loved the tea party and they would have loved him. Reagan was always at war with the RINOs in the Republican party who heartily detested him. He didn’t mind giving them a fig leaf now and them which was why he named Bush as Veep, but he was heart and soul a conservative. Nancy had miserable political instincts which Reagan usually did his best to ignore. When he did not, “Ronnie I would like you to meet my astrologer here at the White House!”, he paid a political price.

  • Are terrorists really covered under the Geneva Convention? Are they really considered POW’s? They do not wear uniforms.

    From Wikipedia:
    “To be entitled to prisoner-of-war status, captured service members must be lawful combatants entitled to combatant’s privilege—which gives them immunity from punishment for crimes constituting lawful acts of war, e.g., killing enemy troops. To qualify under the Third Geneva Convention, a combatant must have conducted military operations according to the laws and customs of war, be part of a chain of command, wear a “fixed distinctive marking, visible from a distance” and bear arms openly. Thus, uniforms and/or badges are important in determining prisoner-of-war status; and francs-tireurs, terrorists, saboteurs, mercenaries and spies do not qualify. In practice, these criteria are rarely interpreted strictly. Guerrillas, for example, usually do not wear a uniform or carry arms openly, yet captured guerrillas are often granted POW status.”

    We clearly need another convention which focuses on terrorists or those enemy combatants who do not wear uniforms and are not fighting for a particular country.

  • Tell me how her quitting her job as Governor and gong to Fox News was a sacrifice for her county???

    Gov. Palin was quite explicit about why she resigned as governor. The resignation was tendered after efforts of her supporters to set up a legal defense fund led to … another ethics complaint to go along with the one about the logos on Todd Palin’s winter clothing, the one filed using the name of a character on East Enders, and twelve others.
    Did you not know this or did you think she was lying?

  • Teresa: “Are terrorists really covered under the Geneva Convention?”

    I can accept the technical argument that terrorists are not soldiers per se and in that sense are beyond the limits of the standard operating “rules of warfare”. This should not be considered by us as an excuse to dispense with the laws of basic civilized conduct when engaging them, either in conflict or as our prisoners.

    Just because they may act like animals does not give us the right to stoop to their level.

  • “Just because they may act like animals does not give us the right to stoop to their level.”

    The Islamic fanatic terrorists are every bit as evil and demonic as the 450 false prophets of Baal whom Elijah confronted in 1st Kings chapter 18. I will, however, concede that he didn’t torture them. He simply lined them up at the Kishon brook and slit their throats – see verse 40. Did he stoop to the level of the false prophets in so doing?

    By the way, did Jesus torture Jezebel and her adulterous komrades in Revelation 2:20-23? Verse 22 is quite explicit:

    “So I will cast her on a sickbed and plunge those who commit adultery with her into intense sufferring unless they repent of her works.”

  • “Just because they may act like animals does not give us the right to stoop to their level.”

    Well let’s see waterboarding vs. beheading or worse

    Civilized vs. Uncivilized
    Humane vs. Inhumane

  • You’re right, Teresa. We are a bunch of pansies.

  • Compared to Elijah, your statement is correct, Christopher.

  • Good Heavens, Donald,,,If I didn’t know any better I would think you were Sean Hannity’s Speech Writer!!!! As politely as I can put this – I am a Democrat who lived thru McCarthy Hearings, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Nixon, Ford and Carter before we entered the Reagan era,,,,,and frankly the Reagan Revolution has given us the “They hate me, and it’s all their fault” take no prisoner, It’s all about ME enviornment the Republican Party is so entrenched in today.

    I will match your RINO and raise you “CD-TPAP” – Coin Driven Tea Party Apostle Patriot – which describes the very base of a party most of whom when asked to defend their country and borders many years ago, made a conscious decision not to do so. (I lived thru Viet Nam too)

    Sara Palin is a fighter,,,, so the false claim she was going bankrupt and had to leave office is indicative of the “it’s not ME” political stage set long ago. I think alot of the legal wranglings, and maybe a few more, she claims would bankrupt her are the same Legal Issues that would haunt her on a Presidential Bid. For someone whose motto is that of a mamma Pit Bull who would never ever give up,,,, and fight, fight fight,,,, why didn’t she do just that?? It simply is telling of a pattern and there’s alot more pressure in the White House than Mr and Mrs. First Dude’s Cabin in Alaska. She knows herself well,,,,, and I don’t think she will run — Her excuse will be as original as she is.

    On the Lighter side,,,,,, I have always wondered what the Fascination was with the inianimate objects she named her children after,,,,, I am not attacking her or her children,,, ,simply asking a question.

    Have a pleasant rest of the evening.

  • Art Deco — I did not know the details of her Quitting,,,,

    I simply listened to a rambling statement on the Shore of an Alaskan Lake and hoped she would catch her breath…..while she and her daughter Piper turned the Keys over to the Lt. Gov. Why in the world would you ask if I thought she was LYING???

    Again,,, If she chose to run for President,,,what about leaving office then would not hound her today,,,, and why not clear it up and then run??????? Back to my original question — Her sacrifice in the name of her country was what.

    Thanks,,,,,,, don’t follow Cable News,,, I didn’t know the legal details, but hope for an answer to my original query.

  • “I am a Democrat”

    My sincere condolences. :)

    “and frankly the Reagan Revolution has given us the “They hate me, and it’s all their fault” take no prisoner, It’s all about ME enviornment the Republican Party is so entrenched in today.”

    You do realize that this is in direct contradiction as to what you said about Reagan in your earlier post? Reagan shifted the Republican party in a more conservative direction, a process that had been ongoing since Goldwater ran in 64. This was at the same as the Democrats were moving left. There are now twice as many self-proclaimed conservatives, 40% of the adult population, as there are self-proclaimed liberals, about 20% of the adult population. I expect a Democrat to decry the conservative direction of the GOP as it has made the Republicans a much more formidable party in most elections, compared to the dominance the Democrats enjoyed in most elections from 1932-1980.

    “Coin Driven Tea Party Apostle Patriot – which describes the very base of a party most of whom when asked to defend their country and borders many years ago, made a conscious decision not to do so.”

    Laughable. One of the strongest supports of the Republican party in this country is from active duty and retired military families. The Democrats realize this which is why they often take pains to toss out military votes sent from overseas. It was the Democrat party which pushed amnesty for draft dodgers from the Vietnam conflict, and it was John Kerry, after his brief service on active duty in Vietnam, who attacked his fellow soldiers at hearings before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on April 22, 1971 with these words:

    “They told the stories at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.”

    The Democrat party’s attitude towards the military since 67, with honorable exceptions, has generally been one of indifference punctuated by active hatred and contempt.

    “Sara Palin is a fighter,,,, so the false claim she was going bankrupt and had to leave office is indicative of the “it’s not ME” political stage set long ago. I think alot of the legal wranglings, and maybe a few more, she claims would bankrupt her are the same Legal Issues that would haunt her on a Presidential Bid.”

    No, because the litigants would actually have to file suit in civil court where their law suits would be subject to rapid dismissal and sanctions for bring meritless lawsuits. In Alaska endless ethics claims could be brought without an attorney, each one had to be investigated by the State and Palin, out of her family’s then slender resources, had to pay for private attorneys to represent her in each one. It was a clever strategem by her deranged opponents and Palin resigning checkmated this strategy.

    “On the Lighter side,,,,,, I have always wondered what the Fascination was with the inianimate objects she named her children after,,,,, I am not attacking her or her children,,, ,simply asking a question.”

    Track is named that because of the enthusiasm that both the Palins had for track sports in high school. Bristol is named after Bristol Bay where Todd grew up. Willow is named after a small community close to Wasilla. Piper apparently they thought was simply a cool name. I have heard it claimed that this is a reference to the Piper Cub plane, but I don’t think this has ever been said by the Palins. Trig the Palins say is Norwegian for true or brave victory.

  • I simply listened to a rambling statement on the Shore of an Alaskan Lake and hoped she would catch her breath…

    No. You. Didn’t. It was in the course of that statement that she named the sum to which she and her husband were in hock to their lawyers.

  • “He then noted that even voting for a candidate who holds these positions would not involve material cooperation in evil if the Catholic did not vote for the candidate because of their support for abortion or euthanasia, but for other proportionate reasons.”

    Donald, earlier you yourself quoted these words: “When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favour of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation”

    Remote material cooperation is a kind of material cooperation.

    “Then the Church was involved in a great deal of evil for a very long time indeed and not in the sense of a Pope or some other ecclesiatical official engaging in private sin.”

    The facts of history are indeed facts.

  • “Remote material cooperation is a kind of material cooperation.”

    Hardly the point the Pope was making. It would seem that in regard to torture and voting you are more Catholic than the Pope is in regard to voting and abortion and euthanasia.

    ““Then the Church was involved in a great deal of evil for a very long time indeed and not in the sense of a Pope or some other ecclesiastical official engaging in private sin.”

    The facts of history are indeed facts.”

    Then God help us indeed if the Bride of Christ can slip into such serious error for centuries. Thank God for us enlightened moderns to condemn the errors of past Catholics: Popes, Councils and Saints.

  • Ok Art Deco,,,,,, as a last attempt to tell you what I heard in a Rambling Statement were no specifics whatsoever, just another of the many “I am a victim of the media and their trial attorneys” diatribe. Nothing about logo’s on Todd’s Garments, the twelve other suits, and know nothing about the “East Enders”

    Now if you want to actually answer the original question, that’s fine with me, if not, I will simply assume you won’t/can’t….. you have taken the Sara the Special Victim Party Stance, and will no longer ask you to defend her ations rather than answer the question.

    Please don’t tell me what I did and did not hear, it’s simply fatiguing.

  • You should have turned up the volume on your tv when you were listening to her speech Jane. This is a quote from her speech:

    “Every one – all 15 of the ethics complaints have been dismissed. We’ve won! But it hasn’t been cheap – the State has wasted THOUSANDS of hours of YOUR time and shelled out some two million of YOUR dollars to respond to “opposition research” – that’s money NOT going to fund teachers or troopers – or safer roads. And this political absurdity, the “politics of personal destruction” … Todd and I are looking at more than half a million dollars in legal bills in order to set the record straight. And what about the people who offer up these silly accusations? It doesn’t cost them a dime so they’re not going to stop draining public resources – spending other peoples’ money in their game.

    It’s pretty insane – my staff and I spend most of our day dealing with THIS instead of progressing our state now. I know I promised no more “politics as usual,” but THIS isn’t what anyone had in mind for ALASKA.”

    I guess it is true that many people really do hear only what they want to hear.

  • @ Donald
    By her words it is obvious that Jane likes following cues from the Lame Stream Media and playing the MSM’s treat Sarah like crap fest. I make you a bet if it was a Democrat who stepped down under the same exact circumstances Jane wouldn’t be acting like a hound dog jumping all over her for no good reason.

  • When I saw the phrase, “Jane wouldn’t be acting like a hound dog,” a certain unprintable word came to my mind. I would NOT say Jane deserves the word, but when I think of Democrats yipping and yammering and yowling and barking against Sarah Palin, the word does come to mind. If Geraldine Ferraro – pro-abortion pseudo-Catholic – had been treated with but a portion of the vile invective launched on Sarah Palin’s head, the main stream media would be all up in arms on how anti-female the right wing is. Here’s the fact: we got two gorgeous, beautiful women – Bachmann and Palin – who have brains and savvy, and the left wing Marxists can’t stand that because of theirs are —- well —- you know that word I was thinking of?

    Yup, uncharitable of me. I suppose Confession is in order.

  • “It would seem that in regard to torture and voting you are more Catholic than the Pope is in regard to voting and abortion and euthanasia.”

    Voting for a candidate is cooperation with *all* the evil you know he intends to effect. Do you suppose that voting for a pro-abortion, pro-torture candidate would be cooperation with abortion but not torture? Please ask a moral theologian you trust about that.

    “Thank God for us enlightened moderns to condemn the errors of past Catholics: Popes, Councils and Saints.”

    See, *that’s* what I’d call being more Catholic than the Pope.

  • Dear TAC editorial staff,

    As a long time reader, perhaps one of your first readers, I am shocked, SHOCKED, I tell you to learn you don’t have a policy against perpetuating the Great St. Blogs Torture Debate. Do you not know little good can come of it? Are you unaware that even the most sincere, articulate, factual, and effective arguments are often poisoned by the accompanying biting hatred and contempt for others, inflamed sense of self, or a fallacious cheap shot that renders the good argument wasted?

    I oppose torture as much as the next guy, even mild psychological torture like that of the Great Torture Debate. So please, please, I beg you. Leave the torture debate to those who have made a name for themselves from it or to those who oppose torture while torturing reason in most other matters. I generally avoid those sites anyway.

    I’m not asking that nobody mention torture or waterboarding, but to not do so in such a way where you’re just asking for a 200 comment thread. If a raging debate is what is desired, there are other more entertaining staples you can use for that like the liturgical abuse or form, Attachment Parenting, or girls that wear pants.

    Sincerely,
    A Reader

  • One doesn’t have to go any further than the Empty heads making the most noise on this site to re-confirm the “empowered Laity” the Catholic Church is depending upon to save it is actually the root of what has been the slow destruction of its very foundation for at least ten years.

    Smarter than the rest of the room and far too elitist to address the hypocrisy wrought throughout politically Motivated spokespersons for a Party unable to even ask Rick Santorum why he supported and endorsed Specter over Toomey in the 2004 Republican Primary, all they are able to do is use Religion for their own political gain, and church be damned. They’re better than the rest of us,,,,,

    While hoping to fill the week-end void of no new assigned talking points they spew the mindless rhetoric of their angry leaders while all but naming Sara Palin as not only Defender of their Party but Laity’s Mother of Church.

    Pretty Sad when you think of it,,,, –Paul,,, you and Teresa are perfect examples of the the “Catholics of Convenience” who have hi-jacked the Catholic Church for your own political and personal gain,,,,,,and your angry judgemental statements are indicative of the frustration your inability to address any issue manifests.

    Paul, you are one of nothing more than a keyboard Commando’s that would never have the courage to say any of the words you print to the person you attack. That’s what makes you who you are. Preferring to stay above the gutter I don’t know or care to know the words you are thinking of.

    Keep holding on to those happy thoughts have a Blessed Evening and we can all keep praying Mel Gibson builds a church for you, too. –

  • Jane, I didn’t read the entirety of your post, but I can tell you that Sen Santorum says he endorsed Specter in exchange from a pledge from him that he (the chair of the judiciary committee) would support whomever GWB nominated to the Supreme Court. It’s proved by the fact that Specter supported Roberts and Alito; why else would he have?

  • Whoa Lady…. Shall we say cuckoo?…“Catholics of Convenience”? Are you serious? You belong to the Party which invented that term and should know it very well as your Party or the Catholic Left distorts many principles of the Catholic faith to support your own political convenient and expedient causes. Think how you use the Church’s position on labor and social justice for your Leftist political motives. You accept the promoters of abortion – which has been identified as a moral intrinsic evil explicitly by the Church – , contraception, and gay “marriage” while to justify it in your minds you say it is okay because of the other good things they do just so you can rationalize your way out of feeling guilt. So you might want to take a look right inside yourself before you start casting unproven or false aspersions at other people.

  • One more thing… @Jane If you think that voters weren’t at least a little miffed that Santorum supported the huge RINO Specter just because we don’t criticize that decision of Santorum on a 24/7 basis then let’s just say that I feel sorry for you.

  • “Voting for a candidate is cooperation with *all* the evil you know he intends to effect. Do you suppose that voting for a pro-abortion, pro-torture candidate would be cooperation with abortion but not torture?”

    So you disagree with Cardinal Ratzinger’s statement regarding voting for a pro-abortion or pro-euthanasia candidate Tom?

  • Jane,

    Awww! You got your feeling hurt.

    While Democrats torture unborn babies to death.

    Palin-Bachmann 2012! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Fill up on the full measure of Obamania.

  • “So you disagree with Cardinal Ratzinger’s statement regarding voting for a pro-abortion or pro-euthanasia candidate Tom?”

    No, Donald. I understand it. You don’t, which is why I suggested you ask a moral theologian you trust about this.

  • Oh I agree that you understand it Tom. However, since it is unhelpful to your stand on torture and not voting for a candidate simply because he endorses waterboarding you choose to ignore it.

  • “Remote material cooperation is a kind of material cooperation.”

    Do you consider that one who is in remote material cooperation is morally culpable with the acts committed?

  • “RL wins the internet.”

    That’s a prize? :)

  • “However, since it is unhelpful to your stand on torture and not voting for a candidate simply because he endorses waterboarding you choose to ignore it.”

    This statement is false, as can be demonstrated from what I’ve written above.

    The only explanation I can come up with for why you would quote me agreeing with the letter as evidence that I disagree with the letter is that you don’t understand the letter. In particular: you seem to suggest that aboriton and euthanasia are the *only* evils that can be cooperated with — whether formally or materially, whether proximate or remote — in voting for a candidate.

  • Tom, where you seek to ignore the letter is two fold. You seek to ignore the letter in that Cardinal Ratzinger specifically said that Catholics might vote for pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia candidates if they did not do so in support of those stances but for other proportionate reasons. You also ignore the letter in that the Pope noted that not all issues have the weight of abortion and euthanasia. This was done in 2004 when the torture issue was already being raised, and the Pope was commenting in reference to the upcoming American elections. You ignore the letter I suspect because the Cardinal did not elevate your pet torture issue to the same status as abortion and euthanasia and, even if he had, the Pope would not be on the same page with you as to a blanket prohibition of supporting a candidate who embraced torture if the same logic applies in regard to torture which he used in reference to abortion and euthanasia.

  • “Do you consider that one who is in remote material cooperation is morally culpable with the acts committed?”

    Absent proportionate reasons, it is evil to cooperate with evil. The more remote my act is from the act of the evildoer, the more likely a reason to cooperate with an evil one does not desire is proportionate.

  • Donald:

    If all you mean is that it follows from the letter that one may vote for a pro-torture candidate given proportionate reasons, then I agree and have never said otherwise.

  • I assumed Tom that you thought otherwise. If I was in error on that point I apologize. Taking up proprortionate reasons, do you think that being opposed to legalized abortion, as say Rick Santorum is, while being in favor of waterboarding, would constitute a proportionate reason to vote for him under the analysis of Cardinal Ratzinger?

  • So then one can be without moral culpability in remote material cooperation?

  • “I am a victim of the media and their trial attorneys” diatribe. Nothing about logo’s on Todd’s Garments, the twelve other suits, and know nothing about the “East Enders”

    She did not discuss the specific complaints. (And I am not being facetious, those three complaints were actual complaints filed). She did state specifically why she was resigning the governorship and what her legal bills had been. You were not paying attention.

    And, yes, the treatment of Gov. Palin has been odd. I have to ask how many quondam vice presidential candidates have been raked over the coals by the media or by the authorities in this manner. In living memory, three: Geraldine Ferraro, John Edwards, and Sarah Palin. Todd Palin has not engaged in any dubious real estate deals, Track Palin is not involved in the drug trade, Todd Palin is not dying of cancer, Sarah Palin has no bastard children and is not engaged in an adulterous liaison with any of Jay McInerney’s friends while Todd Palin expires from cancer, and the media never went after any of the children of any such candidate in memory provided said issue was not involved in the drug trade a-la Junior Zaccaro and Trip Gore. The Bristol & Levi show is most unedifying, but that aside, Gov. Palin and her family have been subject to abuse that is pretty singular.

  • Paul Primavera Writes – “Awww! You got your feeling hurt.
    While Democrats torture unborn babies to death,,,,then mentions Palin-Bachman and Obamamania.”

    Jane Replies,,,,Paul, your tactics are unable to hurt anyone’s feelings. Because all a coward unable to present ANY debate about ANYTHING without hiding behind an Unborn Child is to hurt the Unborn and Life Issues more than Democrat ever could. And you LOVE It.

    Your inability to debate any issue without tossing Abortion around so you can call your opponant a name is why Abortion will never end. You like it that way,,,, it isn’t about life. It’s about a political banner you can wave at a political rally in the name of religion, and it simply kills the message.

    When you are able to accept that NO ONE died to leave you in charge,,,, and stop your tactics,,,,perhaps a reasonable debate will follow. Until then, your posts are simply immature and fatiguing.

    And frankly, you are a prime example of the newly empowered laity that is doing harm to our church and its message in the name of nothing more than POLITICS.

    Please prove me wrong.

  • Jane,

    If all you can do is call me names, then you have proven to me everything I know about liberals to be true.

    I don’t dialogue with liberals. The Republican Party may not be the party of God. But the Demokratik Party IS the party of satan. Pure and simple.

    There is no debating. Elijah knew that when he faced the 450 false prophets of Baal at the Kishon Brook. I am done with you.

  • BTW, Jane is correct. I am a coward. That’s why I served as a reactor operator in the US Submarine Force. I always felt that if I had to die in combat, then implosive decompression on a torpedo strike at test depth was a far better way to go than being tortured to death. Hopefully, though, we would have been able to get our thermonuclear tipped sub rocs off in time to have the last laugh!

    ;-)

    I still feel that way.

  • Art Deco — Good Heavens,,,,,how many Gossip Columns do you read a day???? —- Me,,,, I spend all my time researching the Birth Certificate.

    Who is Mcilherny, never heard of Zacarro whomever, and who is Trip Gore. Do you understand how much time you have WASTED simply defending the Palin family against Gossip the Right never stops talking about and the rest of the world could care less???

    Wouldn’t that time be better spent simply answered any of the questions I asked,,, Forget about my original question as to “How Resiging from Office can be Patriotic”,,,,,who are all those people you speak of,,,,,,what legitimate source gave you that information, and is there really a Bristol and Levi Show??

    Govenor Palin enjoyoed the limelight and wasn’t particular about protecting any of them when she put them, too, on stage,,,,,If you combined that with the Pitbull with Lipstick and childish “Lame Stream Media” phrases and bringing them into every conversation,,,,,the same backstabbing internet that attacks the Left will have a hey-day,,,,, To compare the treatment she receives from the Britebart style Internet with a legitimate mainstream Media held responsible for their reporting is to mix apples and oranges, and the “victimization” card simply gets old.

    PS. Have you lisened to the way Christian Right Wing Radio simply SAVAGES any Democratic Candidate…..and then maybe give a little time researching the McGovern’s Vicie Presidential Candidate Tom Eagleton,,,,,it’s alot more productive than those stupid Gossip Web Sites you clearly browse all day long!!!

    Let’s just agree to disagree….. But remember, statements on an internet are not monitored,,,,,and seldom fact,,,,,, The Main Stream Media is held to a higher standard whether Rush (also not held on factual standards) likes it or not is far more credible than the Gossip Columns you quoted in your rsponses.

  • Dear Paul – Unless you can identify yourself as the politically driven Banner Carrier at a Rally,,,, I called you no names.

    But I want to thank you for confirming your Political and Personal Motivations in the Name of Elijah and all the Prophets yet two more times in less than 20 minutes. You prove my point far better than I do.

    It hasn’t worked for 45 years,,,,Paul,,,,,, Don’t you think if you wanted to change something as important as the Life Issue you would at least try a different tactic by now? That’s all I ask.

    Remember this was and is not the Topic at hand,,,,,,,you just seem unwilling to accept any conversation you are unable to dominate,,,you just Man the Torpedo full speed ahead and sink the very ship you want to save. Please just Drop Anchor and think about that. Seriously….

  • “I personally will not vote for a pro-waterboarding Republican.”

    I personally will not vote for a pro-snowboarding Republican, since it’s even more dangerous and causes ~ 10 deaths per year.

  • Govenor Palin enjoyoed the limelight and wasn’t particular about protecting any of them when she put them, too, on stage,,,,,If you combined that with the Pitbull with Lipstick and childish “Lame Stream Media” phrases and bringing them into every conversation,,,,,the same backstabbing internet that attacks the Left will have a hey-day,,,,, To compare the treatment she receives from the Britebart style Internet with a legitimate mainstream Media held responsible for their reporting is to mix apples and oranges, and the “victimization” card simply gets old.

    I’m not a big fan of Gov. Palin, but this is–sorry, but it’s the only word–asinine. In addition to suggesting that she and her family were asking for it (always a charmer of an argument), to argue to that Palin hasn’t been savaged to an unprecedented degree is blinkered. By your partisan logic, since President Obama put his daughters on stage after winning the nomination in Denver, the gloves could come off? Nonsense. Even when he invoked them in a birth control argument (the notorious “punished with a baby” gaffe), they are still rightfully off limits.

    To give another example: the Associated Press had 11 reporters participate in a fact-check on Palin’s biography “Going Rogue.” It assigned zero fact checkers to “Dreams from My Father” or the ObamaCare bill. That’s…peculiar behavior from an ostensibly unbiased newsgatherer.

    The fact you don’t know about Trip Gore and Zaccharo only proves Art’s point–the media has observed a respectful (and appropriate) silence. Whereas CNN devoted a segment to the increasingly deranged Andrew Sullivan’s amateur gynecology and theories about Trig Palin’s parentage just last year.

    Your intense dislike of the governor blinds you to the reality of the situation.

  • “Taking up proprortionate reasons, do you think that being opposed to legalized abortion, as say Rick Santorum is, while being in favor of waterboarding, would constitute a proportionate reason to vote for him under the analysis of Cardinal Ratzinger?”

    I think a far more important question — particularly now, nearly a year and a half from the general election — is: Why would Republicans nominate a pro-torture candidate?

    But to answer your question, I think a person may judge that to be a proportionate reason in a way consistent with the letter.

    I personally would not judge it to be reason enough to vote for a pro-torture candidate (assuming, at least, there were an anti-torture candidate on the ballot), but my personal judgment is not binding on Catholics.

  • “So then one can be without moral culpability in remote material cooperation?”

    Yes. I’m sorry, I thought people knew that.

  • Phillip
    To make you more confused, there is material and formal cooperation…..and either of those two can be proximate or remote.

    Remote material cooperation as I remember is always without sin….example: a driver of a heating oil truck delivers heating oil to an abortion clinic.

    Proximate material cooperation can be culpable or no depending on circumstances…….example: the Catholic owner of the heating oil company actively seeks the contract to sell his heating oil to the abortion clinic…..sin. OR….he simply agrees to supply oil when they approach him and there are many other suppliers
    (his is not pivotal to their survival)….. no sin in his agreeing if his country’s laws require him to sell to all but illegal entities.

    Remote formal cooperation… the medical salesman who sells implements to the abortion clinic at his own initiative….sin.

    Proximate formal cooperation…..everyone working within the abortion clinic….sin.

  • Dale, I didn’t indicate Sara or any member of her Family “asked for anything”. I simply stated she is more than willing to quote and bring them into a conversation and put them on stage. I wasn’t comfortable with that from the start. — and Dale,,,,this was a converstion about Sara Palin,,,not the “Democrat” Party –not Obama, or his girls,,,,, or his book or how we know how many fact checkers are on a story (although I did hear this AM from a conservative host that there are 13 FACT CHECKERS on Governor Christie. — Who cares and how they know,,, I don’t care. I don’t care about Andrew Sullivan, or any heritage lines on Trig , and wouldn’t waste my time watching anything like that. There are lots of us out there.

    What fatigues me is how willing everyone is to stomp on a conversation that started with a simple statement that was made and question that still has NOT been answered,,,,,If she quit the Governorship only two years into her first term “FOR ANY REASON” – would people be as willing to elect her to the Presidency?? And I think she will not run. — and look where the dialogue went.

    Teresa, ,Paul, and others

    If Palin chooses not to run ,,,, Governor Christie is being asked to run for President — He is “personally” opposed to abortion and has stated, with respect to his opposition to abortion, that he would not use the governor’s office to “force that down people’s throats”. He does favor restrictions on abortion such as banning partial-birth abortion, requiring parental notification, and imposing a 24-hour waiting period – His choice for Lt. Governor is PRO-CHOICE and was picked to satisfy a very Vocal Republicans for Choice Wing of the Party.

    A vote for Christie would then put and openly pro-choice Republican in the Governor’s Mansion —- Do you vote for Christe in the Primary???

    Have a lovely rest of the day.

  • this was a converstion about Sara Palin,,,not the “Democrat” Party –not Obama, or his girls,,,,, or his book or how we know how many fact checkers are on a story (although I did hear this AM from a conservative host that there are 13 FACT CHECKERS on Governor Christie. — Who cares and how they know,,, I don’t care. I don’t care about Andrew Sullivan, or any heritage lines on Trig , and wouldn’t waste my time watching anything like that. There are lots of us out there.

    It’s increasingly difficult to discern what this conversation is about, I’ll grant that. However, you expressly attempted to distinguish her treatment at the hands of mainstream media from that of Breitbart against Democrats. I responded with two examples (AP and CNN) of a mainstream media frenzy against (1) Palin and (2) her toddler son. If you can find equivalent reportage by those respected organizations regarding people not of Palin’s party, then I’d have to withdraw the charge.

    You are absolutely correct that CNN, et al and an up-front polemical brawler Breitbart are supposed to be apples and oranges. Unfortunately, the Palin example shows the comparison is more Granny Smith and Golden Delicious.

  • this was a converstion about Sara Palin,

    A. This was a thread about Rick Santorum and waterboarding.
    B. There is an “h” at the end of Sarah Palin’s first name. As much time as you’ve spent pontificating about her it would be helpful if you could spell it correctly once.

  • Jane,

    Jay McInerney is a novelist, and a quite prominent one. One of his characters was based on a friend then known as Lisa Druck. Lisa Druck subsequently changed her name Rielle Hunter. She is the mother of John Edwards’ bastard child. Geraldine Ferraro’s son, John Zaccaro, Jr., was prosecuted in 1986 for petty drug dealing. Albert Gore III has had several arrests for possession and reckless driving. Beyond these two, I am not aware of any child of a vice-presidential candidate being subject to unflattering stories in the media. I do not read gossip columns and have devoted only a few minutes to answering you.

    Anyone who reads newsmagazines and such even casually is aware that Gov. Palin and her family have been savaged by the media, up to and including the specious nonsense peddled by Kos and Paul Krugman attempting to stick her with the bill for Jared Loughner’s insanity. It is not merely trash media. Dr. Krugman has a column with the New York Times and one of her more asinine detractors, Andrew Sullivan, had one at the Atlantic Monthly. Gov. Palin should be granted considerable patience and discretion in how she responds to all this, something you are unwilling to do for reasons I doubt reflect well on you.

  • “Yes. I’m sorry, I thought people knew that.”

    It just wasn’t clear from your assertions about material cooperation in your post and comments including, as Bill Bannon mentions, about the distinctions between immediate, mediate, proximate and remote cooperation.

    Thus led to some confusion about what you were saying about it being morally licit or not to vote for someone who advocated and intrinsic evil given proportionate reasons.

  • Phillip
    “Double effect” is present also whenever one votes….the lineaments of which are found easily through google. In fact it would have come to my mind before material cooperation in the act of voting.

  • Dale, not interested in the Novelist — Don’t care to know any of the “b” child’s parent’s pseudonysm, wonder if the child’s Christian name was bastard,,,, and don’t care to read Atlas Shrugged either. Don’t care as much about Ferraro’s son as you did, and I doubt Al Gore’s son is Trip. — There is a Tipper Gore. – That takes me to the alledged NY Times Article,,, I read it,,,, No where does Krugman ask to stick anyone with a bill – Maybe Rush or Glenn said that — but —IN AN OPINION PIECE – I failed to read or understand how someone “sticks anyone with the bill” for Loughner’s insantiy — Gifford already paid that price.

    I Did some limited research on Sullivan (of whom I am not a fan) – and found Atlantic Monthly BLOGS,,,,,they are legitimate on neither side. Same with KOS – My hope is that you will admit there hasn’t been another VP Candidate so visible, vocal, and willing to be on center stage than Sara Palin wi- Won’t you

    Dale, this is fatiguing — and I have used all the patience and discretion I can muster to not to take that worn out “They did it first path”. — I think that reflects well on me. — To Mix KOS – Atlantic Monthly BLOGS and an OPINION PIECE as Mainstream Media attacking Sara Palin may be the reason Conservatives would prefer to call Media with whom they don’t agree “LAME STREAM” — and praise the fair and Balanced Fox News. Good Heavens, Dale,,,,, stop already.

    Again,,,,,there is a difference between Legitimate Media — (who retracts wrong statements) and BLOGS/24 Hr CABLE CHATS. (Maybe referring to Legitimate Media is lame to some,,,,not to me.)

    I think we have beaten this subject to death — and hope your day reflects well on you.

  • Dear Jane,

    You are liberal, progressive and Demokratik – the three dirtiest words in the English language. I have no desire to prove you wrong. Not worth the effort. The facts do that all by themselves. I simply work to see this kind of political partisanship defeated – utterly, totally and completely. There is no dialogue to be had with liberals. I refuse to cast my pearls before swine (as it were). Hmmm….there’s a Bible verse to that effect.

    BTW, being liberal, you have to respond to this. Go ahead.

  • Well I see this thread is getting into a bout of name calling. As one of the editors of TAC I am closing down this thread to further comments. See you all at the next torture thread!

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