Saturday, January 24, 2009


How does a person make the decision that torture is OK? I can not get behind the idea that someone can have a level of fear that it's OK to throw away your moral compass. I'm sure some people don't have such a thing as a moral compass, but still, most do.
What does it take to decide that you're no better than you imagine your worst enemies to be?
Can it only be fear of the unknown? I have been in life and death situations before and never had a level of fear that ripped away my moral compass. And I did not get my moral compass from religion nor from an upbringing with a lot of guidance in that area. And yet it seems like a pretty strong, sound system. And I don't consider myself anything out of the ordinary.

So, what does it take?

Another take from Andrew:

Does torture become something less awful when we do it? Is it a function of "paranoia" to worry about it when it's done by Americans or Brits? When a "good man" like George W. Bush does it? When a personally humane person like Donald Rumsfeld does it? When we know our motives are good ones? Orwell's answer is categorical. That's why he set Nineteen-Eighty-Four in his native England:

The scene of the book is laid in Britain in order to emphasize that the English-speaking races are not innately better than anyone else.

Do you believe that or not? Churchill didn't, which is why, despite a 9/11 every week in London during the Blitz, he never capitulated to the evil he was fighting against. Bush and Cheney, in contrast, made it standard operating procedure after one attack by people armed with nothing but box-cutters and our fear. History, as John Ashcroft once said, will not be kind.

Link here

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A New Day

We've all been talking about it, and it's getting very close. And it would be a shame that we expect so much and then become disappointed, discouraged, and begin to feel hopeless.

There is much to be overjoyed about. I was a child but I remember JFK running for president, with all the negitive crap that was being spread. The great speeches, the person he was overcame all that. The last year or so has seen many similarities. But JFK had his warts that we saw as time went on and we will see Obama's as well.

Still... This is the most exciting history that I've seen in my life. I used to say my grandfather was born almost before cars were invented and lived to see 2 world wars and a man on the moon and that this was an immense amount of history in one lifetime. I think we are topping that on the 20th. We have a chance to reboot our country, not quite a do over but we never really get those in real life.

I am hopeful and yet reserved. I owned a business that survived during 2 large recessions and now own another. I'm not sure that it will survive because this recession seems much worse. I worry every day that everything will be wiped out and years of effort will be down the drain.

Still... It'll be a new day and I can only be hopeful. Things will change, they always do. I'm just thinking that for all of us having to pay the economic price for the crappy politics we did not have to pay an even higher price. Many have done just that and we should never forget that.

To January 20th! Cheers!