Wednesday, February 03, 2010

A Sense of Security

Richard Cohen says "there is almost nothing the Obama administration does regarding terrorism that makes me feel safer." At the risk of shocking you, this leads him to make an imperious demand for less civilization and more torture.

Which reminds me of something I said in this post:

Having a wingnut tell you that you're weak on national security is like having Howard Hughes tell you that you don't wash your hands often enough. The obvious problem with this is that you can't wash your hands often enough to satisfy a maniac; there's not enough soap and water on earth.
As well as something I said in this post:
Cohen insists that the accommodation his own defective nature has made to brutality comprises some self-evident spiritual axiom for the rest of us.
If I could leave it at that, I'd probably be a better person. I'd certainly be a happier and calmer one. But Cohen's beliefs are too grotesque not to repudiate at greater length. It won't impress him, natch...but at least our supremely rational transhuman descendants will have evidence that some of Cohen's contemporaries thought he was an absolute fucking monster.

Here, he explains why we should be allowed to lock people away in perpetuity:
It's true that the world does not like Guantanamo, but then it's also true that the world is not an al-Qaeda target.
I thought the unique horror of al-Qaeda was that they intended to force the entire civilized world under the yoke of sharia, and then cut everyone's heads off. I was also under the impression that they'd attacked and killed people in a variety of countries, including Muslim ones.

But apparently, they're only angry at us. Which means that no one's allowed to criticize us for indefinitely detaining suspects, or suspected suspects, or alleged associates of suspected suspects, or their next-door neighbors. A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do!
No doubt George Bush soiled America's image abroad with what looked liked vigilante justice and Dick Cheney's hearty endorsement of ugly interrogation measures. But more is at stake here than America's image abroad -- namely the security and peace of mind of Americans in America.
And what could America's image abroad possibly have to do with its security? Barbra Streisand probably thinks there's some sort of connection, but real Americans know that furriners who perceive the USA as a land of cruel, lawless, hypocritical bullies are much less likely to launch deadly attacks on our cities. And they also know that other countries are much more likely to help us fight terrorism when we make it perfectly clear that we don't give a fuck what they say or think about our methods. That's just common sense.

As is this:
[T]he paramount civil liberty is a sense of security....
Not even security, which would be bad enough, but a sense of security: the kind you get when you see photos like these and realize that they're not just comforting, but also sort of arousing.

I don't know about you, but I don't want my government to do whatever it takes to help Richard Cohen sleep peacefully, partly because I have no desire to live in a neo-monarchist police state that's run like a game of Calvinball, and partly because I don't think a monomaniacal warmonger like Cohen deserves to sleep peacefully. It irritates me that despite the widely acknowledged horrors of the Iraq War, and Abu Ghraib, and every other act of unjustifiable cruelty that this awful little man cheered as though it were Yanni's third encore, Cohen still mistakes his chickenshit bloodlust for the promptings of our collective soul.

That's how come I've decided to take up a collection in order to make Cohen as secure as possible. I say we inoculate him against smallpox and anthrax and Q-fever, put him in a heavily padded suit of armor, seal him in an unmarked bathyscaphe well stocked with potassium iodide and duct tape, and drop his sorry ass into the Marianas Trench so he can run out the clock in perfect safety, just like the Prince of Pompadoodle. To keep him happy as well as safe, we'll broadcast clips from Salo and tell him they're excerpted from US interrogations conducted in the underground prison complex of some Near Eastern client state.

Of course, he won't be able to write any more of this ugly crypto-fascist nonsense, lest the jihadists trace his Intertube signals and blow him up with suitcase nukes. But who wouldn't give up the right to make an abject fool of oneself in print, in order to gain a sense of security?

In related news, Daniel Pipes advises Obama to salvage his approval ratings by attacking Iran. I feel safer already!

UPDATE: Instead of impotently cursing the darkness a la yours truly, The Editors offer to protect Lower Manhattan from the forces of Islamo-liberal constitutionalist juridicalism.

(Image at top via lurkertech.)


Makarios said...

"And what could America's image abroad possibly have to do with its security?"

Butbutbut. . .they hate us because of our freedoms!

Kulkuri said...

I'm stealing your aWol&co threat level poster. Thanx.

Gummo said...

Oh, thank you for this.

The idea that our whole society should be designed around the fears of the most cowardly among us is mind-boggling, pathetic and embarrassing.

The idea that we should commit war crimes just to make the cowards' pee-pees hard would be absurd and laughable if we hadn't already done it for 8+ years.

chris said...

One can only conclude that Cohen has never left the house where he was born after his mother told to always wear clean underwear in case he was hit by a bus.
No, one does not wish to speculate on the state of his undergarments.

Jazzbumpa said...

What is really sweet, of course, is that we sent agents to Whereverthehell and brought back members of the underpants bombers family who have sweet talked him into divulging valuable, actionable information.

Some yahoos hide behind the fantasy notion that torture yields useful information, but the reality (I'm very into reality today) is that torture is its own reward.


Woody (Tokin Librul/Rogue Scholar/ Helluvafella!) said...

The real problem with our 'elites' and their sycophants like Cohen is they do not carry in their DNA the memory of their class being pared down by guillotine or firing-squad.

Absent the caution borne of that experience, they will NEVER cease to screw with the rest of us.

Phila said...

The real problem with our 'elites' and their sycophants like Cohen is they do not carry in their DNA the memory of their class being pared down by guillotine or firing-squad.

Well, to be fair, that kind of thing doesn't happen very often, and people don't always draw the right conclusions from it. As Benjamin Franklin said, nothing dries sooner than a tear (with the possible exception of neopentane).

That said, if I were Cohen, or any of his fellow travelers, I'd be a lot more worried about angry relatives of dead soldiers than Islamofascists.