Wednesday, August 26, 2009

She Had Me At Moo And Then She Played "The Torturers In The Dock" Card

This blogger has a fantasy: the "Inglorious Basterds" who dispatched Nazis in Quentin Tarantino's alternative history of WWII, would be reconstituted to hunt the torturers among us. From the POTUS (43) all of the way down to the lowliest CIA contractor in Iraq or Afghanistan, these betrayers of what this country stands for would be bludgeoned with Louisville Sluggers and scalped or marked for life with a scar in the middle of their foreheads. For the Nazis in Tarantino's version of WWII, those who were allowed to live were marked with a large scar (inflicted with a Bowie knife) in the shape of a swastika just above the bridge of their nose. This blogger would settle for an upper-case "T" on the torturers' foreheads. To hell with courts and sentences and plea bargains. If this is (fair & balanced) wishful thinking, so be it.

[x HuffPost]
What's The Big Deal?
By Jane Smiley

Tag Cloud of the following article

created at

I understand that while I was uploading old photos onto Facebook, some joker was on "All Things Considered," going on about how we can't afford to take the time or the money to investigate tortures committed by the Bush administration. Have to move on, I suppose. This is like deciding that it isn't worth while to find out why little Dickie hung the neighbor's cat by its ears from the clothesline, or why little Donny shot out the neighbor's windows with his twenty-two, because it's more important to make dinner or to watch Lost. Pretty soon, Dickie and Donny are stealing cars and tormenting nerdy kids out behind the gym at school, and then they get to be real criminals.

Because make no mistake about it, if we as a nation sweep the Bush crimes, committed both here and abroad, under the rug because we're too lazy or afraid or "poor" to investigate, our criminals will be back with bigger plans, and the fact that they got away with it this time will set the same sort of precedent that was set in the Reagan administration, when Cheney and Rumsfeld found out that if they could just get back into power, no one was going to stop them from doing whatever they felt like.

This is how Republicans operate. They want power and they take it if they get a chance. They either don't understand laws or they don't respect them, so those of us who want to live in a lawful, decent world have to make sure that they feel the weight of the law. Those gun-toters at the town-meetings demonstrate what I mean. Their plan is not to discuss universal healthcare, it's to demonstrate power. They don't want to inspire respect in the unarmed crowds, they want to inspire fear. And they don't inspire respect — there are lots of comments on blogs about gun-toters, and a good portion of them comment on the size of the weapons a man packs relative to his natural endowment. But they do inspire fear — in their Congressional representatives and in the other people at the town hall meetings.

Respect and fear are two different things. The thing about Republicans is that they don't care so much about respect, but they love fear, at least in others. So the rest of us have to communicate with them in a language that they understand, and until these torturers, especially those at the top, stand in the dock and look the law in the face, and know that they broke it and are going to be punished, they will not learn what they can and cannot do.

But, you say, our effort will be wasted. They'll get in their lawyers and their lobbyists and their apologists and roll us over once again. Maybe so. But I say even that is worth it, because we have to confront, once and for all, the question of whether this is a law-abiding nation or just another out-of-control oligarchy. The founding fathers would expect no less of us. Ω

[Jane Smiley is the author of

1980 Barn Blind. Smiley's debut novel treats the Karlson family of rural Illinois and its demanding mother.

1987 The Age of Grief: A Novella and Stories. Nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award, the volume includes stories about family life and marriage. Critics admire the psychological penetration of the title story, in which an apparently happy and attractive couple are devastated by infidelity.

1988 The Greenlanders. Smiley has called this massive historical novel, chronicling the destruction of the Norse settlements in Greenland in the tenth century, "the true masterpiece" among her works.

1991 A Thousand Acres. Smiley's best-selling novel, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, has been called a feminist reworking of King Lear. Her deft handling of human character and her deep feeling for her rural setting elicit critical approval.

1995 Moo. Smiley's academic satire surveys a Midwestern agricultural "cow-college," filled with professional rivalries and pretenses.

1998 The All-True Adventures of Lidie Newton. The novelist invents a female abolitionist active in the Kansas Territory. Critics admire the character's eloquence, the period setting, and Smiley's ability to meld an adventure story with a keen moral sensibility.

Smiley received an A.B. at Vassar College, then earned an M.F.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. While working towards her doctorate, she also spent a year studying in Iceland as a Fulbright Scholar.]

Copyright © 2009, Inc.

Get the Google Reader at no cost from Google. Click on this link to go on a tour of the Google Reader. If you read a lot of blogs, load Reader with your regular sites, then check them all on one page. The Reader's share function lets you publicize your favorite posts.

Copyright © 2009 Sapper's (Fair & Balanced) Rants & Raves

No comments:

Post a Comment

☛ STOP!!! Read the following BEFORE posting a Comment!

Include your e-mail address with your comment or your comment will be deleted by default. Your e-mail address will be DELETED before the comment is posted to this blog. Comments to entries in this blog are moderated by the blogger. Violators of this rule can KMA (Kiss My A-Double-Crooked-Letter) as this blogger's late maternal grandmother would say. No e-mail address (to be verified AND then deleted by the blogger) within the comment, no posting. That is the (fair & balanced) rule for comments to this blog.