Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Was McCain Tortured?

Conservative blogger Andrew Sullivan had an interesting point yesterday:
In all the discussion of John McCain's recently recovered memory of a religious epiphany in Vietnam, one thing has been missing. The torture that was deployed against McCain emerges in all the various accounts. It involved sleep deprivation, the withholding of medical treatment, stress positions, long-time standing, and beating. Sound familiar?

According to the Bush administration's definition of torture, McCain was therefore not tortured.

Thoughtful post, read the rest HERE.

So, was he, or wasn't he?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a true jackass Jim Kennedy is.

John McCain consistently opposed all the questionable interrogation methods employed by Bush in Iraq. It is was one of the many ways in which he has distinguished himself from the Bush administration. Yet, the partisan Kennedy here tries to tie McCain to Bush's policies.

While we have the opportunity, let's review McCain's service in Vietnam. When the North Vietnamese tried to release McCain because they found out his Dad was a four-star admiral and they wanted to use him for propaganda purposes, McCain refused unless his men were also released. A true war hero. They make movies about less noble deeds.

At the same point in his life, Obama was sipping lattes in Cambridge.

And from George Washington to U.S. Grant to Teddy R to Ike to Jack Kennedy, has America ever failed to elect a war hero when given a chance?


We're still the home of the free because of the brave.

August 21, 2008 8:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wall St Journal this morning:

New WSJ/NBC poll says Obama-McCain race now a statistical dead heat.

Only 20% of those who voted for Clinton in the primaries will vote for Obama.

August 21, 2008 8:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey there, "Down South" - if you checked your facts before spouting off about Sen. Obama you would find that he was barely 13 y.o. when the war "ended" in Vietnam - hardly an age when he would be sipping lattes in Cambridge. You were right in noting that Obama was a student at Cambridge; Sen. McCaine was third from the bottom of his graduating class at the USNA. As far as making movies about "less noble deeds", how about a movie about Pres. Bush hiding from the draft with his father's invlovement or Cheney taking several deferments because of "physical problems"? You are such a transparent hypocrite and closeted-bigot!
An "Anonymous" fan

August 21, 2008 9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is a stain on the moral fiber of our country that our government has systematically legalized the torture of prisoners of war and others in the false interest of fighting the 'war on terror.'

August 21, 2008 11:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could note another corollary to Godwin's Law, about the 'first person to insult Jim...'

Godwin's Law basically says that as threads get longer, they become more heated, and degenerate into name-calling rather than discussion. Anonymous/Southern Voice begins his posts on each thread with such name-calling, thus reducing the utility of the thread to serious people.

August 21, 2008 12:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous fan: Just one clarification about Sen Obama's education. He did indeed to to Cambridge (but in Boston, not in England) where he earned his law degree from Harvard in 1991. He was the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review. He graduated from Harvard Law, Magna Cum Laude. (He had earned his undergraduate degree from Columbia University in 1983, where he had majored in political science, with a specialization in international relations.

August 21, 2008 1:20 PM  
Blogger Tish said...

Robert, your points are excellent and I wonder if down south will pay attention. ds's points about McCain's experience as a prisoner of war and his opposition to the Bush administration's policies could have been the beginning of a very interesting discussion, if they had been made in a constructive manner.

August 21, 2008 2:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sullivan seems to indicate that McCain did approve the same methods be applied to American detainees that were applied to himself. It's sometimes hard with Andrew to distinguish details from opinion, so it's worth looking into further.

As all research, and McCains experience indicate, confession and facts delived under torture and treat are hardly reliable (witness both periods of witch-hunting in our history, during the 1690s and 1950s: people made false confessions and falsely implicated others to save their own skins. Intelligence gathered under such coersive techniques simply can not be relied upon. McCain's experience is a great example of that.

I'd like to determine whether he did approve such methods as a lawmaker, as Sullivan suggests.


August 21, 2008 4:30 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Pew Research's annual Religion and Public Life Survey indicates that 52% of Americans think churches should keep out of social and political matters.This is the first time in over a decade that a majority has responded that way:

"The greatest increases since 2004 in the view that churches and other houses of worship should not express themselves on political matters have occurred among less educated Republicans and people who say that social issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage will be important to their vote. For example, among people who rate gay marriage as a top voting issue, the percentage saying that churches should stay out of politics soared from 25% in 2004 to 50% currently."

August 21, 2008 4:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry, Robert, et al, but Jim was called a jackass because his offense was grand. McCain has consistently opposed even the hint of torture. He is an American hero, deserving of respect. It is because of men like him that TTF and the rest of us are free to speak our mind. To mislead in defaming such a person is no small crime. It is also a crime not to point out such behavior.

For those of you intellectually challenged, I compared what Obama was doing at a similar point in his life not in the same year.

Let's talk about what he's doing now. He's running for President when he has no accomplishments that would commend him to such a job. At that point in John McCain's life, he was building a resume of legislative service.

Obama served his constituents one year before he started campaigning to lead the free world. His audacity, by his own word, will be his downfall.

Anyone remember what the 20th century's greatest President said when a reporter asked him about the age issue when he ran against Walter Mondale in 1984?

He said, "I'm glad you asked that question. I would never dream of using my opponent's youth and inexperience against him in this campaign."

Obama doesn't deserve the same consideration.

August 22, 2008 2:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There seems to be some disagreement among sources I can find about actions McCain has taken re: torture. He initially opposed the Military Commissions Act, which authorized military trial of 'detainees', until it included a clause guaranteeing US compliance with the Geneva Conventions. The objection 've seen to this is that interpretation of the conventions is explicitly left solely to the President, with no oversight by any legislative or judicial body permitted.

My guess on this issue is that McCain doesn't like the idea of torture, probably thinks it isn't all that helpful, but goes along with the administration crowd on this. Some bloggers, though, have accused him of grandstanding and outright obfuscation.

It is, however, a legitimate issue for debate and discussion in this presidential election.


August 22, 2008 3:16 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in an interview Wednesday that he was uncertain how many houses he and his wife, Cindy, own.
"I think -- I'll have my staff get to you," McCain told Politico in Las Cruces, N.M. "It's condominiums where -- I'll have them get to you."

A guy who says he'll have to have his staff let you know how many houses he owns is accusing his opponent of being an elitist - that's a good one. Its easy to see who the latte sipper is.

August 22, 2008 3:25 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Red Baron said "Obama served his constituents one year before he started campaigning to lead the free world".

The U.S. president doesn't even lead the whole U.S. let alone the free world. Its talk like this that makes the U.S. despised around the world.

If you think the U.S. president leads the free world then by the same token you must agree that the pope is the leader of all Christianity - you can't have it both ways.

August 22, 2008 3:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was McCain Tortured?

More important question

Did McCain receive any treatment for his post-traumatic stress disorder caused by five years of torture and imprisonment or is it the lack of treatment that causes him to have his well documented temper outbreaks?

We've already seen how much harm an untreated alcoholic president can do. How much more harm might an untreated PTSS survivor president cause?

August 23, 2008 9:17 AM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

When Mccain can't remember how many houses he has its pretty clear dementia has set in.

August 23, 2008 1:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The U.S. president doesn't even lead the whole U.S. let alone the free world."

Tell that to the leaders of France, Germany, Britain and Canada. He does their performance review.

Anytime a leader of those countries doesn't follow U.S. leading, the voters get rid of them. Remember who the leaders of those countries were five years ago?

"Its talk like this that makes the U.S. despised around the world."

"The world"?

Could you describe it?

3/4 of the world loves us, the other quarter are resentful U.S. wannabes.

"If you think the U.S. president leads the free world"

I do.

"then by the same token you must agree that the pope is the leader of all Christianity"

I know the Reformation is only 500 years old but surely they're including it in the Canadian history curriculums by now.

"- you can't have it both ways."

Don't start talking about your sick fantasies again, Priya/Randi.

"We've already seen how much harm an untreated alcoholic president can do. How much more harm might an untreated PTSS survivor president cause?"

Oh yeah, sitting around the garden sipping tea is much better preparation for leading the free world.

Ask Prince Charles.

"When Mccain can't remember how many houses he has its pretty clear dementia has set in."

Democrats really are a pathetic group of losers. Hopefully, they will keep pushing this line.

Americans, who are aspirational rather than resentful, will reject them.

August 24, 2008 7:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PHOENIX -- Bucking all of the predictions regarding his choice of a running mate, Senator John McCain will choose Ronald Reagan to run as his Vice President, the Post Times Sun Dispatch learned today. "This is a brilliant move," said Charles Schneider, a strategist for the Republican Party, "as it will bring all the conservatives and Reagan Democrats to the polls to vote for McCain."
"The choice of Reagan is also a positive for McCain because he will look young and vigorous compared to Reagan and he will look more attentive," Schneider said. "I couldn't have suggested a better choice," said Dick Cheney, "except for me, of course."

Democratic political strategist James Carville said, "I can't believe what those Republicans will dig up to win this election." Barack Obama said he had no comment as he would like to keep the tone of the campaign above board and above ground.

"There is nothing in the Constitution that says you have to be alive to be the Vice President," said Alan Dershowitz, Harvard Law Professor, " I guess our founding fathers didn't think future generations would be so unscrupulous and so dumb." "I don't think it's bad to choosicate a Vice President without a pulse," President [sic] Bush said, "after all, I have a Vice President without a heart."

21 August 2008

August 24, 2008 2:10 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

"We've already seen how much harm an untreated alcoholic president can do. How much more harm might an untreated PTSS survivor president cause?"

Oh yeah, sitting around the garden sipping tea is much better preparation for leading the free world."

Are you saying that a presidential candidate who has displayed a violent temper that may be indicative of a serious and untreated mental disorder is better prepared to lead than someone who does not have a violent temper and does not show signs of having a mental disorder?

It isn't about resentment, it's about the facts. It's relevent to his ability to make decisions.
Someone with untreated post-traumatic stress disorder can be fine for quite some time and then go completely off when an episode is triggered. People with PTSD are dangerous enough as everyday citizens, you certainly don't want to hand someone like that the presidency. We need someone with sound mind and the ability to be reasonable, not someone who's going to start yelling and screaming out the blue.

August 25, 2008 12:11 PM  

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