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Jack Bauer Justice

What is it about the right-wing's penchant for TV justice. Last night it was the Wall Street Journal's Stephen Moore. "You know what this is really. It's Jack Bauer justice ... he should run the CIA" to which Bill Maher responds, "you do realize it's a TV show," but Rep. Barney Frank (D) Massachusetts got to the heart of the matter when he said, "It's not terrorists we're talking about, it's people accused of terrorism."



Quicktime Video 4.61 MB : 5'39
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Real Time with Bill Maher

 

Comments

This was actually excellent. Lots of good points. Why is the level of discourse so much higher on a comedy show than it is in the real news?

I'm watching it now, and this guy from the WSJ is an absolute tool. Yikes.

stay tuned I'll be posting clips of Barney Franks on the republican hypocrisy about homosexuality and his take on Iraq. The tool Stephen Moore makes for great time.

The WSJ seems to have a plethora of dumbasses named Steve Moore.

Wow, I get enough ranting from my Chinese friends about how their government sweeps "enemies of the state" up, drugs them to provide the impression of insanity and does away with them. I can only hope such doesn't happen in the USA ... and yes, Moore is a fucking tool.

Finally, A US politican mentions the case of Maher Arar.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maher_Arar

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"This was actually excellent. Lots of good points. Why is the level of discourse so much higher on a comedy show than it is in the real news?"

Good question--even though Maher isn't always a very informed moderator, I have to admit his discussions are often lively. It may have to do with the fact that they have plenty of time to talk and don't have to rush through a series of questions. The Sunday morning talk shows are I think pretty substantive, but the setting is so confrontational (as it often should be) that politicians are so stiff on those shows that is is often more about evading than talking.

The fact that Jack Bauer has become the mascot of the right wing view of torture merits a few comments:

1) it shows the fundamental depravity of the right wing on this issue that they show this much lack of seriousness about it.

2) people on the right who make this "24" comparison know shockingly little about how intelligence, interrogation, and anti-terrorism efforts actually work in the real world. It's like modelling your campaign strategy on "Legally Blonde 2", or basing an astrophysics course on "Star Wars".

here is the fundamental problem: americans dont know SHIT about their own legal system. Eveything they know comes from TV shows like law and order and 24. People really think that a ticking bomb could happen or has happened, despite the fact that it never has and is unlikely to ever happen. Americans have no clue what constitutional rights they have or what police proceedure is. If you know anything about criminal proceedure, then shows like law and order where cops can arrest people without probable cause or hold someone until they confess seem rediculous. Unfortunately the public is so uneducated that they have no idea when something is true and when its not. And where was the debate about this bill? MSNBC, CNN, et al didn't even put it on the front page of their websites. You would think that a violation of the most sacred criminal proceedure (the right to ask thatan accuser prsent the evidence based on which he is keeping you inprisoned)has just been suspended by law. Who the hell would vote for this?? either our government is now full of totalitarian types, or ourr representatives are as dumb as the public and dont read what they vote on!

"but the setting is so confrontational (as it often should be) that politicians are so stiff on those shows that is is often more about evading than talking."

so true! excellent point dende blogger.

I remember watching this video of an Australian show (2004 I believe), where an interviewer asked people in the streets of LA, New York etc to name what countries were evil and which ones should be invaded next. Although this was random and not substantial like, say, a 1800 poll, it was astonishing how ignorant and ill-informed these people were. Let alone having them point to the country in question on a world map...('France' being Australia for instance) Anno 2006, I'm not suprised the majority of this 'great' nation still hasn't risen up, and can't see fascism when it's staring them in the face.

What is also helpful to know, NEVER has him beating the shit out of the terrorist or shooting them in the leg EVER given him information either at all or in time enough.

You should look towards 24 and see that it isn't useful ..

Plus, you have these terrorist who are willing to freakin kill themselves for the cause ... I think they might make it through torture.

Hey, how about we get Ramboo? He can take down 400 terrorist and not get a scratch or even have to reload!

sigh I've quoted this before, and I'll quote it again.

"Those who give up freedom for saftey, deserve niether" (Chopped up horribly, I know)

I wish Bill Maher would come out against Government sponsored terror and False Flag operations.

With warships heading towards the Persian Gulf, I hope that they are not planning another staged "Gulf of Tonkin" like incident or "9/11" type attack.

Peace.

I'm really shocked that someone would come out and openly say it's ok to shoot someone in the leg if he has vital information. I mean, what's the use of laws, trials, lawyers then ? And who decides what information is "vital" ?

You could never publicly say such a thing in France (my country) without completely damaging your credibility.

"You could never publicly say such a thing in France (my country) without completely damaging your credibility."

Jean-Marie Le Pen.

torture works if what you're trying to do is manufacture information. you can get a "terrorist" to say anything. look at this: http://www.juancole.com/2006/10/craig-murray-on-manufacturing-terror.html

anton- "Who the hell would vote for this?? either our government is now full of totalitarian types, or ourr representatives are as dumb as the public and dont read what they vote on!"

arlen specter said something like "this bill is blatantly unconstitutional on its face" right before voting for it. only one repbulican voted against it, presumably they all know what the constitution is, they just dont care.

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Bottom line: 24 is a TELEVISION SHOW and bears no relation to real life. And as if all that stuff could happen in a day...

I was taught in my military interrogation training that torture does not work. Are we supposed to base the values of our country on a shitty TV show? If so I want it to be Funniest Home Videos instead of 24 so I can hit Rumsfeld in the crotch with a football.

I too would like to applaud the mention of Maher Arar. This guy is the poster boy for why this kind of law is wrong. The worst part was that the guy wasn't even an American and they shipped him to Syria for subcontracted torture. It's so disgusting.

btw, Ingram brought up Jack Bauer last week. I think a memo went out for talking points to include references to 24. How stupid do they think the voting populace is that we would decide whether something is right or wrong based on a TV show?

Bravo, Bill. If, in the absolutly miniscule rare 'ticking bomb' situation, law enforcement would put someone down regardless of the law. Why do some people not see that?

Pinheads like Steven Moore is why I read the Financial Times. There are not too many as far out of touch as he betrayed himself to be with Bill Maher. Thank goodness Barney Frank set his misquided rump straight.

Yep, pun intended!

See The Myth of the Ticking Time Bomb in The Progressive magazine for an excellent arguement against the idea that it ever makes sense to "shoot a guy in the leg" to save Times Square.

My only disappointment in the exchange on TV was that even Maher and Frank said it's useful sometimes to torture. You can't know whom to torture, you can't know when, you can't know what to ask, they will either tell you anything or tell you nothing. And worst of all, when do you stop? If torturing one suspect might give you information, no matter how suspect, why not torture lots of people? We are much better off using what the article calls "empathetic interrogation." Not just because it is more humane, but because it works better.

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