Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Torture and Newspeak

Did anyone get the sense that Ron Paul was the only candidate in the Republican Debate tonight that has read the book 1984? He took Brit Hume's covert phrase "enhanced interrogation techniques" and said "it sounds like newspeak" and is just another word for torture. (See Andrew Sullivan's take on the debate if you missed it.) No one on the stage seemed to get the reference, nor anyone in the red state crowd, but it was heartening to hear the reference amidst an otherwise drowning Republican party.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Which is more intellectually dishonest:

Using phrased like "enhanced interogation techniques" to refer to things like sleep deprivation, pretending to rub menstrual blood on someone, wrapping them in an enemy flag, etc.

Or calling those things torture, thereby creating a moral category so broad that it conflates those things with, well, real torture?

Because if the right is doing the former, the left (and leftist "human rights" groups) has been doing the latter for some time now.

Maybe we should all scale down the rhetoric, as well as the allusions to 1984 -- which ought to become the next corollary to Godwin's Law, IMO.

5/27/2007 1:37 PM  

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