Pelosi opposes torture when it looks good politicallyMost readers who are familiar with my work and the stances that I have taken know that I have consistently opposed the unconstitutional provisions of the PATRIOT Act and the means of torture that are presently being used against America's enemies. I haven't opposed these things because I want to give any aid and comfort to our enemies at home and abroad, but rather because I believe that giving that kind of power to your political friends can eventually lead to your enemies acquiring those powers and using them against their opposition-you (conservatives read: that means Hillary, Obama, or any liberal can use the police power of the federal government against us for the crime of actively opposing them). There is nothing to prevent any government from using extraordinary powers to quash their opposition if the precedent for the use of those powers, however well-intentioned it might have been, is already on the books.
I have also warned that the opposition of the Democratic Leadership to these practices is disingenuous at best. They would use these same powers if they had control of the White House, and their present attitude is one of mere political posturing. To hear House Speaker Nancy Pelosi talk about these matters, we might be compelled to think that she is an ardent defender of the Constitution and of the sovereign rights of the people. The reality seems to be something different, because in 2002,Pelosi was in favor of waterboarding and other forms of government-sanctioned torture:
In September 2002, four members of Congress met in secret for a first look at a unique CIA program designed to wring vital information from reticent terrorism suspects in U.S. custody. For more than an hour, the bipartisan group, which included future-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), was given a virtual tour of the CIA's overseas detention sites and the harsh techniques interrogators had devised to try to make their prisoners talk.
Among the techniques described, said two officials
present, was waterboarding, a practice that years later would be condemned as
torture by Democrats and some Republicans on Capitol Hill. But on that day, no
objections were raised. Instead, at least two lawmakers in the room asked the
CIA to push harder, two U.S. officials said.
Pelosi declined to comment directly on her reaction
to the classified briefings. But a congressional source familiar with Pelosi's
position on the matter said the California lawmaker did recall discussions about
enhanced interrogation. The source said Pelosi recalls that techniques described
by the CIA were still in the planning stage -- they had been designed and
cleared with agency lawyers but not yet put in practice -- and acknowledged that
Pelosi did not raise objections at the time.
When Pelosi has the Speaker's Chair, she objects to anything and everything the administration does regardless of whether it is good or not. Now that it is to her political advantage to oppose torture, she opposes torture-it makes her and the Democrats look good politically.
Doesn't it give you such confidence to know that we have such a cowardly so-called "leader" second in line for the Presidency?