Thursday, September 20

Question to consider?????

Romans 13:1-5 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God's wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God's wrath but also for the sake of conscience.

I was asked the following question by a liberal:

”What is your feeling on the current administration's refusal to ban the torture of war prisoners? Does that mean that Republicans condone torture? Both are pretty repugnant to me.”

Although I am aware that liberals are more upset over the U.S. military dropping a Koran in a toilet than they are jihadists beheading people and placing it on the internet, I think it would be interesting to open this question up to discussion and wrap it around the following hypothetical scenario:

(1) U.S Intelligence, in spite of all the restrictions that liberals have placed on intelligence gathering, have determined that Jihadists have a nuclear bomb and are planning to detonate it over a major American city with a helicopter or either hidden in a transport truck. They are not sure if it will be across the Mexican border, the Canadian border, or from a ship at sea. They believe that a helicopter will be used to bring it over the border, or from a ship where it will be loaded on to a transport truck or possibly delivered directly from the helicopter.

(2) Our military gets really fortunate and captures the leader of the plan. Time is of the essence and they know that this individual knows everything about the plan.

QUESTION: Knowing that this plan is with days or even hours of being carried out, do you believe that all methods of enhanced interrogation techniques should be used to obtain the particulars of this plan including anything that might be considered torture?

68 comments:

jazzycat said...

LA, San Fran, Houston, Miami, New York, Boston, Chicago..... tick, tick, tick, which one will it be?

You make the call.

jazzycat said...

A simple yes or no will be a sufficient answer.

donsands said...

Absolutely. The better good ia to save millions of lives.

Torture is wrong for torture sake, but for the greater cause it may be necessary.

monkeymind said...

Ah, the famous ticking time bomb scenario. It certainly happens quite freqently on TV. You know that the military has paid a call on the creators of "24" to tell them to cool it, their show is having a negative effect on our soldiers, right?
I think when it comes to fighting terrorism, we need to get away from the kind emotional reactivity this scenario tends to engender, and figure out how to be a whole lot smarter. Ever since the bomb-throwers of 19th century Russia, terrorist have tried to manipulate governments into heavy-handed reactions to their provocations, which hurt the governments in question more than the terrorists.

I tend to place more weight on the testimony of interrogation professionals like ex-FBI agent Joe Navarro and others when this type of scenario relies on too many assumptions and really only serves to cloud judgement on the issue. The best argument on using torture in this case, is that it is likely to elicit false information. At best it is a waste of time, at worst it would lead the prevention efforts down a completely wrong track.
BTW, one person who would give an uneqivocal "yes" to your scenario is professional atheist Sam Harris. Whatever that means.

Derek Berner said...

Jazzy, your situation is contrived. The dubious effectiveness of torture aside, the reality is, how a person acts in a panic situation speaks volumes about their character.

I myself don't want to belong to a country that could years down the road be compared to Nazi Germany for our refusal to "use any means necessary," and this is but one of the propagandist scenarios that the right wing has been pushing on us to get us to give up our freedoms.

As Ben Franklin once said, "The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either."

Derek Berner said...

edit to the above - refusal to use -- policy of using

jazzycat said...

Donsands,
You have nailed it. Torture for torture’s sake is wrong, but in this case, if it would get the desired information, then it would be the right and necessary thing to do.

jazzycat said...

monkeymind,
You said……. Ah, the famous ticking time bomb scenario. It certainly happens quite freqently on TV……………..
I have never watched 24, but I understand that it is fiction and does not pretend to be real. IMO a larger danger are the documentaries that are fiction and propaganda, but claim to be truth such as those by Michael Moore and the one by Al Gore.

You said……. I think when it comes to fighting terrorism, we need to get away from the kind emotional reactivity this scenario tends to engender, and figure out how to be a whole lot smarter.
The scenario that I gave or something similar is very possible. If we have figured out how to be a whole lot smarter and this scenario can be prevented, then that would be great. However, right now it is a real and present danger.

You said…… Ever since the bomb-throwers of 19th century Russia, terrorist have tried to manipulate governments into heavy-handed reactions to their provocations, which hurt the governments in question more than the terrorists.
Are you saying that using everything we have to prevent a nuclear attack is playing into their hands and the nuclear attack would be preferable? No offense but this sounds like irrational liberal-speak to me.

You said….. I tend to place more weight on the testimony of interrogation professionals like ex-FBI agent Joe Navarro…………………….
Re-read this post and you will see that it specifically mentions using enhanced interrogation techniques which certainly suggests professionals doing the work. If ice cream and cookies would get the information needed then that would certainly be better than more extreme measures. This post is not meant to be a debate about the effectiveness of techniques.

In the end I see that you did not answer the question. I would certainly encourage you to give an answer. It is not a hard question. As to Mr. Harris, I guess it means that we agree on that point.

jazzycat said...

Derek,
You said………. Jazzy, your situation is contrived. The dubious effectiveness of torture aside, the reality is, how a person acts in a panic situation speaks volumes about their character.
I did frame the torture scenario in a way that illustrates the ole rubber meets the road reality test, and unfortunately the scenario that I present is very possible and thus worthy of considering what one really thinks about these things. I don’t understand what your point is about the panic statement, but I guess as a former military pilot, I agree that panic is not a good thing. Professionals should not panic in the scenario I presented.

You said……… I myself don't want to belong to a country that could years down the road be compared to Nazi Germany for our policy of "using any means necessary," and this is but one of the propagandist scenarios that the right wing has been pushing on us to get us to give up our freedoms.
This sounds like a no to me. Rather than years down the road being compared to Nazi Germany, you would rather lose a major American city to a nuclear blast. Please correct me if I am wrong, but that is what I take from that sentence. Do you really equate the scenario that I present with the regime of Nazi Germany? What freedoms has the right-wing been pushing to take away that even comes close to the freedoms that the left-wing wants take away with the socialized medicine scheme and the global warming hysteria let alone Nazi Germany?

You said…… As Ben Franklin once said, "The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either."
Is that also true for socialized medicine? You need to test these liberal talking points on liberal ideas and programs as well. As a volunteer for my church, I took an individual to a government Medicaid center yesterday for a Dr. appointment. It took him 3 hours and 40 minutes to get out. That is a preview of government run health care by either liberals or conservatives.

I was in Franklin, TN in July. It is a nice town. Do you consider yourself an emergent church member?

monkeymind said...

Jazzy - my point was that Navarro and other experts on interrogation do not advocate the use of torture, because it is not effective. It would be particularly ineffective in a ticking time bomb situation with a fanatic. S/he would be more likely to give false information that would waste many person-hours in following it up.

Your highly emotional scenario only serves to deflect attention from how we have thrown away our principles at Guantanamo and elsewhere to very little purpose.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
Thanks for your response. This post was based on an accusation that Bush refuses to ban torture. Evidently Navarro and other experts you mention have not convinced the Bush administration on their views and torture is still in play. This scenario is based on the opinion by the person quoted in this post and unfortunately this or something similar could happen. This has been made abundantly clear by jihadist rhetoric and actions such as 9/11. Therefore, the scenario is still valid and your last paragraph is incorrect, inaccurate, and off subject.

Are you afraid to answer the straight forward question of this post? If not please let us know.

Magnus said...

hey,

I live in Franklin, TN and you are right it is a great town.

As for my answer, if we stick with the Scripture verse that you cited at the beginning then I have to say that it is by God's ordained plan that this current administration is in power. Who am I to argue with God.

magnus

jazzycat said...

Magnus,
Thanks for the comment. Yes, everything ultimately is ordained by God. The only other option is that God cannot or will not control events. This is open theism, but the Bible clearly teaches a sovereign God that does make known the end from the beginning..........

jazzycat said...

Magnus,
I forgot to ask. Would you like to answer the question since in a little over a year we will have a new president? It is possible that he/she would be like a commenter here and be more interested in how the world views the US than protecting our cities. When you look at what some of the candidates say and do, you could certainly draw that conclusion.

What is the murder of a few hundred thousand Americans count in comparison to having Europe and the Arab countries respect and like us? This nonsense seems to be prevasive among many in this country.

Magnus said...

Sorry, I thought that I had answered the question. It is my duty as a citizen to do what I can to vote for the person that best represents me. If that person wins then great, if that person looses... then I will follow the rules and laws and throw my support to that person.

As is stated in the Scripture verse that you cited. I am under the belief that God has a plan and that we can not mess it up. So if a person wins that I did not vote for it tells me that I may not understand it, but that I have to trust that it all works out for the greater good.

Magnus

Magnus said...

Forgot to put, So since the current administration uses enhanced interrogation tactics that i support it.

magnus

monkeymind said...

Jazzycat, I have no doubt that you are an upstanding, responsible, warm-hearted family man and pet owner, as most conservatives are in my experience.

But when you imply that anyone who raises concerns about our nation's current policies cares more about the good opinion of Europe and "the Arab countries" than the lives of her fellow citizens, you resort to a scurrilous, presumptous, dastardly, bullying rhetorical trick.
It is offensive in the extreme to impute these motives to so many people who feel the keenly the loss of our country's most deeply held principles such as habeas corpus. Yes, many of us do regret the loss of America's ability to stand as a moral example of freedom and respect for human rights.
Why must you resort to the fallacy of poisoning the well? Do you truly believe that anyone who disagrees with you about Bush's torture policies is unpatriotic?
I thought Christians were not supposed to be "conformed to this world" yet you have conformed very well to the tactics of bullying talk show hosts.

monkeymind said...

To answer your question directly, of course if one "knows" that the suspect has information that would lead to the foiling of a plot that would kill thousands, or even one other person, basic utilitarian ethics would say that it is justified to use any means necessary to extract the information. The problem is that in reality, it is not usually the case that law enforcement knows certainly that the suspect has the information necessary. Usually, they can only suspect. Then it becomes a slippery slope - how certain do you have to be? So even though I think torture might be conceivably morally justified, I don't think anyone should be granted a license to torture. I do not think it is ever justified to torture the children of a suspect, even thought Bush feels he has the authority to order it.

Many law enforcement professionals, military interrogators, and even former POW John McCain, himself a victim of torture, have stated publicly that the risks of authorizing torture as a matter of policy do not outweigh the possible benefits. People who love America just as much as you do can disagree about this. This republic has been in danger of its life at several points in its history, yet at no point has any administration felt free to trample on our founding principles as much as this one.

donsands said...

"Thus says the Lord of hosts: ... Now go and attack Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and do not spare them. But kill both man and woman, infant and nursing child, ox and sheep, camel and donkey." 1 Sam. 15:3

These are some terribly difficult words to take in. I thought since we are discussing torure, these thoughts from God's Word may help us see that sometimes it is right to take drastic and the most severe measures.
It's never easy, and it shouldn't be. We should be looking for every possible way to avoid it.

That's my couple sheckels worth.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
Thanks for your comment.
you said……… But when you imply that anyone who raises concerns about our nation's current policies cares more about the good opinion of Europe and "the Arab countries" than the lives of her fellow citizens, you resort to a scurrilous, presumptous, dastardly, bullying rhetorical trick.
I suppose you are referring to the following comment I made to Magnus: “Would you like to answer the question since in a little over a year we will have a new president? It is possible that he/she would be like a commenter here and be more interested in how the world views the US than protecting our cities. When you look at what some of the candidates say and do, you could certainly draw that conclusion.

What is the murder of a few hundred thousand Americans count in comparison to having Europe and the Arab countries respect and like us? This nonsense seems to be prevasive among many in this country.”


As you see I started out by quoting Derek who said in pretty clear language that he does care more about what people will say “years down the road” than stopping nuke attack by any means necessary. His two comments are together if you want to check them out. I am not implying, but flat out stating that based on the comments of several presidential candidates (1 Republican (Paul) and all the democrats), there seems to be more of a concern with the US image than conducting the war on Islamic Jihadists. It is not a rhetorical trick at all, it is based on the truth of what a lot of liberals have said including most of the liberal senators, congressmen, and presidential candidates. John Kerry’s own words from the last presidential debates was that military action must pass a global test. I’m sorry but the ole, “how dare you question my patriotism” whine will not work with me. Words have meanings and in the internet age and google, it is easy to find what people have said.

You said…….. It is offensive in the extreme to impute these motives to so many people who feel the keenly the loss of our country's most deeply held principles such as habeas corpus. Yes, many of us do regret the loss of America's ability to stand as a moral example of freedom and respect for human rights.
I suppose you are referring to the enemy combatants in Cuba. I don’t believe it has ever been the policy in US history of bringing war prisoners before a judge and court. When Islamic Jihadists run planes into tall buildings and kill thousands of Americans, do you affirm America’s ability and duty to defend it’s people by going after these people where they are and bring them to justice? Morality and human rights cry out for such acts not to go unpunished. What about the human rights of the innocent Americans that had to choose between being burned alive or jumping out of the twin towers? The prisoners left in Cuba are up to their eyeballs in Ben Laden’s organization, and you are concerned about habeas corpus rights for them. It is all being worked out through our system of government and for Americans to blame America before the eyes of the world causes many of us (conservatives and others) to regret the loss of America’s ability to stand united in the face of an enemy that wants all of us dead.

You said…… Why must you resort to the fallacy of poisoning the well?
You mean like, “Bush lied, people died.”

You said….. Do you truly believe that anyone who disagrees with you about Bush's torture policies is unpatriotic?
This post was not about Bush’s torture policy. Re-read the post carefully. This post posed a hypothetical situation based on what someone else accused Bush of doing concerning torture policy. From the beginning, you have assumed, accused, and criticized without addressing the simple straight forward post that very accurately demonstrates the kind of war we are in with Islamic Jihadists that wanted to kill as many Americans as possible before Bush took office and will be wanting to kill as many Americans as possible after Bush leaves office. You or I were not in one of those planes that went down or in the twin towers, but there is a clear and extreme danger from these people that is not going away unless we do something. I do not believe that worrying about their habeas corpus rights and criticizing every effort that our government takes to fight this war is in our best interest. Responsible dissent is one thing, but the actions of most of the dissent from democratic leaders I see is repugnant and disgusting.

You said…… I thought Christians were not supposed to be "conformed to this world" yet you have conformed very well to the tactics of bullying talk show hosts.
You mean like Rosie, and Air America? Or do you mean the Hollywood crowd who appear on talk shows and spout hate Bush and America rhetoric? I have only given truth and facts.

jazzycat said...

Don,
thanks. That was worth more than a couple of sheckles....

monkeymind said...

Jazzy, I interpreted Derek's remark about what people would think years down the road to mean what would history judge of our present decisions. Certainly we can all be proud of the times in our country's history when America has taken the moral high road in very difficult circumstances. In my travels I have met many Germans born in the 30's and 40's who were touchingly grateful to the United States for instituting the Marshall Plan instead of pursuing a policy of vengeance after WWII.

RE: poisoning the well, I read the definition again on fallacyfiles.org and am willing to concede that the implication that Derek cared more about world opinion than the safety of Americans, was a simple argument ad hominem.

You also say " This post was not about Bush’s torture policy. Re-read the post carefully."

I did re-read the post carefully and found this:

"I was asked the following question by a liberal:

”What is your feeling on the current administration's refusal to ban the torture of war prisoners? Does that mean that Republicans condone torture? Both are pretty repugnant to me.”


Although I am aware that liberals are more upset over the U.S. military dropping a Koran in a toilet than they are jihadists beheading people and placing it on the internet, I think it would be interesting to open this question up to discussion and wrap it around the following hypothetical scenario:"

It seemed clear to me that by saying you want to "open this question to discussion and wrap it around the following hypothetical scenario..."
you are relating the scenario to the original question about the Bush administration's torture policy. Can you at least see how I might have gotten that idea?

You also say: "I’m sorry but the ole, “how dare you question my patriotism” whine will not work with me. Words have meanings and in the internet age and google, it is easy to find what people have said."
I'm sorry if my words came across to you as a whine. That is not the tone I meant to adopt. I am confused about the reference to google. Have you googled some remarks of mine that you think are unpatriotic? I am wondering what they might be.
I have to go pick up my daughter now but I would also like to respond to your remarks about Guantanomo.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
You said.....you are relating the scenario to the original question about the Bush administration's torture policy. Can you at least see how I might have gotten that idea?
Yes. However, my point was to simply show by a realistic example how at some point it may be necessary to do what ever is necessary to attempt to get information. As you pointed out, it may not work, however, that does not mean you should not try.

My google reference was to all of the statements that high ranking democrat politicians have made that show them:
(1) giving aid and comfort to the enemy by carrying dissent much further than necessary with their rhetoric.
(2) showing them assert that Saddam was rebuilding his WMD’s. Some of these statements were even made prior to Bush even being elected to a first term.
(3) considering (2) above….showing them lie and accuse Bush of deceiving them on the WMD issue.
(4) showing them change their position on the war multiple times depending on the political climate of the moment.
(5) showing them call our commander-in-chief a liar and deceiver.

I have not googled you.

The whining comment was a reference to these same politicians being upset when someone accuses them of being unpatriotic and then having the MSM and even conservatives assure them that their patriotism is not in question. Well let me state without reservation that when any Republican or Democrat makes statements that give aid and comfort to the enemy (especially for political reasons), their patriotism is destroyed in my opinion. Further, I think this has happened a lot in the past 3 years. Some like Al Gore and Jimmy Carter have even done it in Middle Eastern countries. I am not talking about responsible dissent. I am talking about pandering for political gain. My bottom line point was that on my blog, their patriotism is in question and if anyone is offended or upset, then that is tough. I am offended and upset by the likes of Ward Churchill, Harry Reid, John Kerry, H. Clinton, Ron Paul, Barak Obama, etc. on a daily basis. I very rarely do political stuff on this blog and since you have asked, I am being very honest and candid with you. I guess I admire your tenacity.

Rose~ said...

Answer: yes.
This is not only OK. This is the DUTY of the government.

Rose~ said...

One more word: if we end up with a wimp in the oval office, we can blame the American people. :~)

But God will use it for His purposes, as ever.

jazzycat said...

Rose,
DUTY. So true. In our fallen world citizens have the right to self-defense, and government should provide police protection and also protection from foreign entities. All of these are under attack from the left wing in this country. To often the criminal is considered the victim when a person chooses to protect his life and property. To often, police are blamed for being too rough on criminals. To often, America is blamed for being too aggressive in the conduct of the war against Islamic Jihadists. Romans 13 makes it clear that God has ordained civil governments to punish evil doers. However, some want to make every excuse under the sun for the behavior of evil and criminally inclined people.

jazzycat said...

Some left-wingers will read my previous comment through their ideological lenses and claim that I favor cowboy justice, police brutality, and war for any reason. Unfortunately, many of them do not leave in the world of reality and reason.

Rose~ said...

We agree. I could have written your 8:00 am comment. It is fun to agree once in a while!

monkeymind said...

You say:
"I guess I admire your tenacity."

Well, thank you. Call me a dreamer, but I still thing it is possible for people to have a civil political discussion on these difficult issues, even if they are in different "camps."

I would like to propose another hypothetical situation to you and your readers, if you are willing to let the discussion continue. This is it:
1) U.S Intelligence has determined that Jihadists have a nuclear bomb and are planning to detonate it over a major American city with a helicopter or either hidden in a transport truck. They are not sure if it will be across the Mexican border, the Canadian border, or from a ship at sea. They believe that a helicopter will be used to bring it over the border, or from a ship where it will be loaded on to a transport truck or possibly delivered directly from the helicopter.

(2) The FBI has a list of suspected terrorists and they have determined that one of these individuals has information that would lead to the foiling of the plot. The individual is arrested. Defense Department staff overrule FBI interrogators and initiate torture on the suspect. After several hours of torture, the suspect is still insisting that he is innocent. So the suspect's family is brought in. Interrogators torture the suspect's son in his presence (this is allowed, according to the President's legal adviser on torture) After several minutes of this, the suspect breaks and confesses all the details of the plot. Investigators race to intercept the bomb, only to find that all the details have been fabricated. The interrogation resumes, and interrogators are about to start torturing the suspect's 3 year old daughter, when satellite evidence comes in that leads to the arrest of the bomb plotters. It turns out that the first suspect is an American citizen of Arab descent whose identity was stolen by one of the plot perpetrators.

This scenario is every bit as realistic as yours. If you think the part about the family was over the top, reflect that people in the present administration do not want this outlawed, and that in any ticking time bomb scenario, investigators would be pushed to this option because an individual can stand up to torture for several hours or even days.

Was the torture of the suspect and his family justified in this situation?

What would the aftermath be for this suspect and his family, and for the personnel involved in the torture?

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
Thanks for the comment. I watch a lot of football on Saturdays so I don't check in too much.....

You said..... Interrogators torture the suspect's son in his presence (this is allowed, according to the President's legal adviser on torture)

What is your source for this statement? Bear in mind, I do not accept everything I hear or read in the MSM. Put another way, I was not surprised by the Dan Rather fraud, as I have had a very low opinion and distrust of the manipulation and propaganda of the MSM for too many years to count....

monkeymind said...

Jazzy: when the President's adviser on the legalities of torture, John Yoo, was asked if the President could authorize torture of a suspect's family members, he replied "It would depend on why the President would want to do that." It's a matter of public record. The statement clearly implies that torture of a suspect's family members should be allowed in some circumstances. To be honest though, I do not know what the current official policy is on this. Perhaps some of the "liberals" in Congress succeeded in getting this particular restriction placed on intelligence gathering.
In the scenario you describe, and the initial part of which I repeated, torture of associates and family members could fall under "all methods of enhanced interrogation" as you put it. Certainly if time is of the essence as in your scenario, the pressure to do so would be intense if there was no official policy prohibiting it. After all, there are many examples of people surviving hours and even days without breaking under torture.
So in this scenario, do you think it is OK to torture the suspect's family members if torture of the suspect is unsuccessful after a certain period of time?

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
While I think the scenario you present is far from being “ever bit as realistic as mine” and would border on incompetence by our intelligience gathering agencies, I will answer your unlikely (but possible) scenario provided you answer the following two simple questions:

(1) You answer your own question.

(2) Since this whole post began from an abortion debate on another blog with someone else, I would like to know your position on partial birth abortion. In this procedure a partially born baby, who would be alive outside of the womb, is killed prior to being completely delivered. Witnesses have described the cruel and painful way this is done with scissors and I will be glad to google and find a detailed description if you like. A woman’s health would not be effected at all if the baby were delivered and given a fighting chance to live rather than being murdered. The clause to ban them except in a case of the health of a mother is no ban at all since it includes “mental” health and there would always be greedy doctors that would sign off on that loophole for a fee. Saving a mothers life or physical health would be different, but even then you wouldn't have to murder the baby. What has this got to do with our debate? The point I am making is that many liberals and I think all of the democratic presidential candidates and most of the democratic senators and congressmen favor keeping this cruel and inhuman procedure legal. Therefore, people who support partial birth abortion have no moral high ground to criticize the Bush administration on its torture policy. Yet, this is primarily the group of people who are doing the criticizing. As repugnant as the torture of the children of an Islamic Jihadists would be to prevent a nuclear denotation in our country, the cruel and painful murder of thousands of children in the partial birth procedure is even worse. These murders are performed solely for the convenience of a “woman’s right to choose.” For these people to object to any interrogation procedure is the height of hypocrisy.

I look forward to hearing your view on these to questions.

monkeymind said...

Hi Jazzy, with regards to #2, yes I am opposed to partial birth abortion. I don't think there is any way it can be justified.

In regards to #1, of you feel the identity theft detail of my scenario reflected badly on the competence of law enforcement, let's change it to this: the suspect was an American businessman of Arab descent who was a business associate of one of the terrorists in a legitimate business enterprise that served as the terrorist's cover story. The terrorist took great care that this associate never suspected his double life. But due to their close association, law enforcement had reason to believe the businessman was in on the plot. Once the plot actually got underway, the terrorist vanished, and so the businessman was the only person that investigators could get their hands on. Certainly you would have to agree that it is more often the case that law enforcement "strongly suspect: than that they "know absolutely" that someone is a terrorist..
My view is that "any means necessary" is to broad a definition of what can be allowed. Isn't there something about gaining the whole world but losing your soul?

jazzycat said...

monkeymind,
Glad you agree on partial birth abortion. That indeed gives you some creditablity on your view.

Your revised scenario is much more plausible. While I am working on my response as I want to cover some problems we now face, I will post this quote from John Yoo that I have learned a little more about. It is to add insight to my upcoming response.

By John Yoo (1-4-2005):
Sept. 11, 2001, proved that the war against Al-Qaida cannot be won solely within the framework of the criminal law. The attacks were more than crimes – they were acts of war. Responding to the attacks and protecting the United States from another requires a military approach to the conflict. But Al-Qaida, without regular armed forces, territory or citizens to defend, also presents unprecedented military challenges.
One of the first policy decisions in this new war concerned the Geneva Conventions – four 1949 treaties ratified by the United States that codify many of the rules for war. After seeking the views of the Justice, State, and Defense departments, Gonzales concluded in a draft January 2002 memo to the president that Al-Qaida and the Taliban were not legally entitled to POW status. He also advised that following every provision of the conventions could hurt the United States' ability to protect itself against ruthless enemies.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
I would like to first mention a few extreme dangers that I think America faces.
(1) I believe the danger we face from Islamic Jihadists is much greater than 95% of our people realize. I think they could actually win over time and that is something I doubt very many people believe.
(2) There tactic of terrorism coupled with a response of appeasement (which we are already seeing in Europe and even here) could bring about a gradual unraveling of western governments including the USA.
(3) While civilian casualties have always been a part of war, I believe that our 24 hours a day seven days a week news has caused the American people to be so repulsed by civilian casualties that they had rather not confront an enemy like Islamic Jihad in a false hope that somehow it is going to get better if we only sit down and talk, give concessions, appease, etc. It is the political correct view to have but it will not work and it will only make the danger grow to a point of possible critical mass.
(4) The Roo article points out that this is a ruthless enemy. It is also a stealth enemy and fighting it will at best be like trying to nail jello to the wall.
(5) These factors all add up to a possible scenario like I proposed and you modified.
(6) The divisions in America and the political exploitation of the war on terror: Bush has been accused of playing politics with the war in Iraq. Excuse me, but if he were playing politics ala Bill Clinton, I think he would have declared victory 3 years ago and left. I ask you who has played politics with this war? Who has gained the most politically? Who has changed from supporting through their votes the war in Iraq to being against it? Who has said (some even before Bush was elected) that Saddam had WMD’s and now claim they were lied to and mislead by Bush about the WMD’s?

I don’t know if you are a Christian or not, but you mentioned something about gaining the world and losing your soul. One’s soul is a spiritual matter that this blog talks about 98% of the time. I believe the threat we face is not about losing our soul, but our freedom, our sovereignty, our country, and our lives. That is how serious I view the threat.

I do not know about the effectiveness of torture in gaining intel. A former Navy pilot who was in the first Gulf war had some training in that area and told me that it could very effective. I would hope that our professionals and our command structure would be extremely careful in any methods they used to gain intel and that oversight by supervisors would always be included. However, I do not think I would want to restrict in any way the ability of our government professionals to fight the Islamic Jihadists.

MY COUNTER SCENARIO TO YOURS:
An Islamic Jihadist nuclear bomb destroys most of San Francisco and kills 600,000 people and it turns out that we did not use extreme interrogation techniques on the person you cited. However, he is so despondent over the event and admits that being a good liberal he did not want to give his friend up, but he did know where he could be found. The Islamic Jihadist become embolden and start getting volunteers by the tens of thousand to carry out Jihad. Do you think we should use all possible techniques the next time we capture an Islamic Jihadist or continue to place certain things off limits? Actually, you do not need to answer this because we could go on forever.

I do respect your opinion because of you were consistent and did not default to nonsense.

monkeymind said...

Sounds like you would be ok with torturing children, then.

Though your wanting to change the ending makes it seem that you are a bit uncomfortable with the idea. Sounds like you want torture to be the extra strength medicine that always gets us what we want. But how can it possibly work like that, every time? The only thing torture guarantees is pain. It doesn't guarantee that you have the right guy, or that he's going to give you the right information. So if you're going to approve the idea of your government being allowed to declare anyone to be an enemy combatant and to torture them, you'll have to be OK with the possibility that an innocent person may be tortured.
Here's what I don't get - according to an earlier comment, you, along with many other conservatives, view a national health plan as a major threat to freedom, which the govt. is bound to bungle. Yet giving the government the authority to revoke the habeas corpus rights of any citizen and torture them at discretion, is no threat to freedom and will be handled with 100% efficiency. There is something about that that does not compute for me.

Also in regards to your quote from Romans, why are the United Nations, the Geneva Convention, and the International Court also authorities that have been instituted by God?

Another commenter gave a very disturbing quote from the OT about killing children, saying this proves harsh measures are sometimes necessary. You have several posts on your blog about the new covenant replacing the old. As I understand it, the first covenant in the OT was between God and Israel. Apparently, God was sometimes OK with "survival by any means necesary" tactic for Israel. But, my understanding is that the new covenant is not with any one nation, but with the Church, the body of Christ. Have I got that right? I haven't been to Sunday School in a while.
Yet sometimes I hear conservative Christians talking as if God has an almost Covenant-like relationship with America. Would you agree with that? What is this founded on, scripturally.

If you and your readers no longer want to talk about the politics of torture, I understand - but the other questions about international bodies as authorities instituted by God, and America's role in the new covenant, I would appreciate if you would explain your thinking on them. I am not asking in order to pounce on and tear apart your answers, I am genuinely interested in how people in your world think about this.

Anonymous said...

Justin says...

Okay, sorry I didn't read it all (only about 1/3), but I do have a question for you, Jazzy.

I take it you are in favor of hard power over soft power?

As for the question at hand, I have no solid opinion. I would be in favor of torture if it were effective, and for only for the better good and if there were no other way. But as so many others keep pointing out, the terrorist is most likely just going to lie and end up wasting our man-power in a wild goose chase that doesn't even exist. So, I dunno. Don't get me wrong, I am, quote unquote, a "conservative," I suppose. But on this point, if it seems liberal to reject torture, then I must side with the liberals on it.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
you said…… Sounds like you would be ok with torturing children, then.
Sounds like you just put a very negative out of context spin on my explanation of torture vs. preventing a nuke destroying a major American city.

You said….. Here's what I don't get - according to an earlier comment, you, along with many other conservatives, view a national health plan as a major threat to freedom, which the govt. is bound to bungle.
You don’t view it as a threat to freedom?

You said…..Yet giving the government the authority to revoke the habeas corpus rights of any citizen and torture them at discretion, is no threat to freedom and will be handled with 100% efficiency. There is something about that that does not compute for me.

Again a very negative out of context spin that does not reflect the reality of our situation.

You said…… But, my understanding is that the new covenant is not with any one nation, but with the Church, the body of Christ. Have I got that right?

Yes.

You said…… Yet sometimes I hear conservative Christians talking as if God has an almost Covenant-like relationship with America. Would you agree with that?

No absolutely not. There is no national covenant relationship with America or any other country.

You said….. Also in regards to your quote from Romans, why are the United Nations, the Geneva Convention, and the International Court also authorities that have been instituted by God?

I am not familiar with the US relationship to the international court. The Geneva convention is a treaty as I understand it that does not cover Islamic Jihadists. The United Nations would be covered by the Scripture passage, however, the United States is a sovereign nation by our constitution and the Scripture passage does not mean the UN trumps our sovereignty. It is a good thing to, because the UN couldn’t run a hot dog stand properly.

You said….. I am genuinely interested in how people in your world think about this.

That sounds a bit condescending. Let me assure you that there are a lot a people in my world and they are extremely glad they are not in the world of Michael Moore, moveon.org, The Daily Kos, Rosie O’Donnald, Ward Churchhill, Cindy Sheehan, Dan Rather, Bill Maher, et. Al.

jazzycat said...

Justin,
I take it you are in favor of hard power over soft power?

I don't know what you mean.

Justin would you have been against D day because it might not have worked? Would you have been against declaring war on Japan because we might have lost and some innocent people might be killed? Should we attempt to intercept an incoming missile with a nuke if it probably will be unsuccessful?

My point is that just because something may not work, in gaining intel that will prevent a nuke attack on an American city, does not mean we shouldn't try it.

If the defense of our country must not be attempted unless we are 100% sure that an innocent civilians will not be hurt, then we are doomed because the Islamic Jihadists not only don't care, they are trying to kill innocent people.

Certainly I would not want to hurt or harm any innocent person, but it is inevitable in any war. It was the Islamic Jihadists that killed about 3000 Americans on 9/11 and if we don't aggressively confront them, they will kill many more.

Anonymous said...

Justin says...

Sorry, I thought you would understand hard/soft power.

Hard power is what you advocate--we cause our opponents to fear us in order to respect us.

Soft power is the opposite--we cuddle up to our opponents and try to curry their favor.

The military is a form of hard power. Peace Corps is a form of soft power.

My point is that just because something may not work, in gaining intel that will prevent a nuke attack on an American city, does not mean we shouldn't try it.

Yes and no, but how to explain that answer I knoweth not.

I dunno, this is why I don't get myself sucked into politics. Hahaha!

jazzycat said...

Justin,
Thanks for your explanation. I have lost your blogspot address, would you give it again?
you said..... Hard power is what you advocate--we cause our opponents to fear us in order to respect us.

That is not my position. I believe the US should try to do what is right, but defend our homeland regardless of how our friends or enemies perceive it. Defense should not have to meet a John Kerry "global test" or what an ineffective and corrupt United Nations think about a situation. All this talk about changing our foreign policy, for the sole purpose of having the countries of the world like and respect us, is nothing but hogwash IMO. I think it would be great if the world liked the US, but not at the expense of our defense or sovereignty.

The same thing can and has happened spiritually. Many Christians and Christian churches have compromised and denied teachings of Scripture in order to be more accepted by the world and secular society. However, Scripture gives guidance on this subject..........

Rom. 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

James 4:4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.


You may not want to be “sucked into politics”, but you will definitely be effected by those that are involved and into politics.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
One point I forgot to make on your comparison of loss of freedom from habeas corpus verses government run health care………….
I don’t think there has been a single case of an American citizen losing habeas corpus rights due to the war against Islamic Jihadists and I can think of one young Taliban American fighter that was captured and tried in the US for his crime. His name escapes me, but I am sure you remember the case. However, government run health care would affect the freedom of 300 million people. Even proponents have to admit that freedoms will be affected. Put in the terms of an athletic contest that is 300,000,000 to zero.

Does that help you compute the difference?

monkeymind said...

Jazzy, you say that I am putting a negative spin on your responses, but if you are considering a policy, you have to visualize the worst-case scenario as well as the best case scenario.

As to why John Walker Lindh was tried in a court instead of being declared an enemy combatant like Jose Padilla, I don't know the reason. It seems to have been an capricious decision, maybe it was because the Bush legal justification for declaring a citizen an enemy combatant was not fully worked out at the time. The fact that this present administration hasn't yet used its authority to declare an American citizen an enemy combatant is no guarantee that the government will never do so. Perhaps, under another administration, Christian dominionists will be arrested as enemies of the people.
The fact is, you are willing to trust the government not to abuse its authority in this matter, whereas when it comes to providing universal health care, you only see the potential for government abuse of power and restriction of freedom.
Under any universal health plan that I have ever heard of, people are still allowed to have private insurance and doctors can still see patients privately, off the health plan. So it's hard to see how anyone's freedom would be curtailed in any meaningful way. When I was in Germany as a student, I was covered by their national health plan and went to the doctor a couple of times. Any restriction of freedom was not noticeable to me.

Anonymous said...

Justin says...

Do you still need my blog's address?

As for the hegemony (hard/soft power) issue, I may have explained it poorly, but that is always how I perceived the issue.

I think it is interesting that you say we should not be like the world, yet you believe that we should torture in order to protect... just as the world does. I dunno, that's just the impression that this teenager is getting from your statements, and I'm sure that is not what you are saying at all.

I dunno. Like I said, I think some form of torture is acceptable in some circumstances. In your example, I would probably go along with it, of course if it were our last resort.

As for politics, I agree, which is why I am interested in them. Inevitably, they will affect my life, and if, in this God-given democracy (IMHO), I have the right and privilage to have a say with what goes on, then I had better use it to the most Christ-glorifying ends.

By the way, I was meaning to ask if you had ever heard of the Constitution Party? I have a feeling you would enjoy it, or at least find it interesting.

Have a great day, Wayne. Be sure to stop by my blog, again, some time. :)

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
The fact that this present administration hasn't yet used its authority to declare an American citizen an enemy combatant is no guarantee that the government will never do so.

That is a valid point and it is also valid on the subject of health care where the 1993 proposal, that failed, was very intrusive and freedom restricting with the likelihood of destroying quality health care in this country. Therefore, it is very probable that any government involvement will lead to more involvement and the same result over time.

What is the difference in your fear of habeas corpus abuse and my fear of health care abuse by the government?

Your fears "may" affect a handful of innocent people but could have the upside of saving a million or so from a nuclear blast. My fears will affect 300 million people adversely and have no upside since no one is being refused health care at the present time.

jazzycat said...

Justin,
I added your blog to my links list so I do not need your address. Your blog is an encouragement to guy my age. Keep up the good work and I will drop in from time to time.

Seems like I have heard of the Constitution party. However, I think the winners are going to come from either the
Democrat or Republican parties. Until both of those parties become equally bad (which could happen) I am going to support candidates from the one that is IMO significantly better than the other in political philosophy.

monkeymind said...

Jazzy, I don't know what constitutional right you feel is threatened by a national health care plan. I am pretty sure that any proposal now on the table would allow anyone to purchase private insurance and see a doctor privately.

Keep in mind that habeas corpus and protection from cruel and unusual punishment were rights that our Founding Fathers pledged "their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor" to protect. No government up until this one has sought to overturn those rights up until this one, despite the fact that the US has been in much more dangerous situations in the past.

You keep trying to imply that willingness to torture is the only thing standing between us and a nuclear holocaust, when that is extremely debatable. There are lots of other things that 9/11 showed we needed to improve in intelligence gathering and analysis, but taking a scissors to the bill of rights isn't one of them.

It's the shredding of the Constitution that I object to, not any opinion poll in Jordan. If we're willing to sacrifice all our most hard-won principles and freedoms, what are we fighting for? The terrorists have won.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
Are you referring to giving enemy combatants all these bill of right guarantees like habeas corpus? Are we talking about the same thing? I am for American citizens being given these rights as certainly happened in the John Walker Lindh case that we referred to earlier. I don't think the US has ever given these rights to POW's and now the new category of foreign Islamic Jihadists.

monkeymind said...

Yaser Hamdi and Jose Padilla -both American citizens. Their names sound funny, they may not look like you, they may be guilty as heck - but up to now, American citizens had the right to habeas corpus.
What if another Timothy McVeigh were to bomb a federal building? Would it be OK to pay a huge bounty to anyone who turned in members of his cell, than take all the people turned in for this reward and imprison them all for months without trial or contact from the outside? This is basically what happened in Afghanistan after the invasion. Ask the next Uighur you happen to meet.
And despite everything, we are no safer.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
I think we need to clarify something before we continue. How does each of us view the 9/11 attack and Islamic Jihad in America? Was it an act of war or a criminal act to be handled by a criminal justice system? I and the current US policy is to consider it an act of war.

Former President Clinton treated the first jihad bombing of the towers as a criminal event and President Bush considered 9/11 as an act of war. I agree with Bush. What is your opinion? Do we proceed against Islamic Jihad as a war or through the criminal/justice system?

Another factor in this debate is the difference in our levels of trust for the different political parties that run our government. My trust, though a long way from being complete, is much higher for the Republican party. I assume yours is greater for the Democrat party.

Susan said...

Jazzy,
Without hesitation, yes. "Enhanced interrogation techniques" or torture. Do what is necessary to save the innocent from the hands of the ruthless evil ones. Absolutely! I have no problem with water-boarding or whatever. Even what may be considered torture.
Not for torture's sake, but to save lives.

It's not "nice", it's not "pretty," and I wouldn't want to do it myself, but I thank the Lord for the men and women who lead and serve this country so that we may live in freedom - safe from our enemies.
And may we love our enemies by praying for their souls. That God would open their eyes to His truth.

jazzycat said...

Susan,
Very good way to put it.

jazzycat said...

Monkeymind,
You said……
No government up until this one has sought to overturn those rights up until this one, despite the fact that the US has been in much more dangerous situations in the past.

Did you forget? A democratic president did the following:
From Wikipedia:
Japanese American Internment was the forced removal and internment of approximately 120,000 Japanese and Japanese Americans (62 percent of whom were United States citizens) from the West Coast of the United States during World War II. While approximately 10,000 were able to relocate to other parts of the country, the remainder – roughly 110,000 men, women and other people – were sent to hastily constructed camps called "War Relocation Centers" in remote portions of the nation's interior.

You have cited two Islamic Jihadists that happened to be American citizens. This was over 62,000 people who were simply of Japanese descent. (Not even an allegation that they did anything wrong)

Anonymous said...

I thought that Lincoln had also suspended habeas corpus during the Civil War?

Gayla said...

To answer the question, yes. I've read all the comments, and I couldn't agree with you more, Wayne. Every point. 100%. Susan too.

jazzycat said...

Gayla,
Thanks for the comment. It is encouraging to hear. This is a difficult thing to think about, but when we get through with all the ifs, ands, buts, and maybes, we are either going to have to aggressively fight Islamic Jihadists or suffer a lot of murder and mayhem by following a PC policy of total nonsense. Not giving more attention to people that fit the profile is one example of PC nonsense. Giving Islamic Jihadists ACLU lawyers would be another example. The list goes on by those who are bound and determined to blame everything on their own country. I am not claiming that is you Monkeymind if you are reading this. I can back that up with examples which I doubt you would disagree.

Gayla said...

This is a fear, no doubt. It would be an even greater fear if I did not believe and rest in the fact that God is indeed in complete control over His creation.

That doesn't mean that things won't get worse; they very well may, and I fear for the next generations.

But *I* believe that America might be in greater danger of being destroyed from within rather than from without. Political correctness is running amuck - it's staggering to witness. But that is also in the context of God's sovereignty - right becomes wrong and wrong becomes right. It's happening before our very eyes.

Gayla said...

Right becoming wrong and vice versa = exchanging the truth for a lie. You know - Romans.

jazzycat said...

Gayla,
So true. We are watching these passages be fulfilled in our lifetime.

Jim said...

I find it interesting that the conservative christian right is so paranoid about terrorism. We seem to think that giving away our freedoms will guarantee security.

The same power the government is using today to "protect" us from the radical muslims will one day be used to persecute any Christian who refuses to compromise the truth of God's word.

We are surrendering our rights and freedoms simply out of fear, and yet scripture warns us hundreds of times not to fear. What does that say about our righteous standing as a nation and church before God?

How can the ends possibly justify the means while maintaining moral high ground and integrity? The two are mutually imcompatible.

The Islamic threat is real enough, but the battle is not being lost in Iraq; it is being lost on the streets of America as we give way to rising decadence and immorality. The love of money, pleasure, and power has corrupted the church and silenced her voice in opposition to these evils.

Social woes aside, where is the burden for our nation with respect to prayer and fasting? Are we more concerned about security than souls, or politics than the gospel?

The wicked flee when no man pursues, but the righteousness are as bold as a lion.

jazzycat said...

Jim,
Good to hear from you. I have already addressed some of your points in the thread. I cannot speak for conservative Christians, but personally I believe the threat from Islamic Jihad is far greater than most Americans believe. That is my starting point. I have pointed out in this thread that I have seen our freedom and rights far more threatened by our government in other ways than has occurred in the area of the war on Islamic Jihad. Fear is not my motivation in this struggle against evil. Aggressive defense of our country is my motivation. The worry about Christian persecution is a valid worry and one that I see coming regardless of what is done or not done in the war against Islamic Jihad. IMO, that train has left the station independent of this war. I guess there is a danger from what is done in this war to make it worse. However, I believe other things such as “hate crime legislation” is a far greater threat to freedom of religion. You ask, “How can the ends justify the means……….?” When you consider the scenario that I presented, then I guess I would hate to be the one to limit what efforts would be made to gain the information needed to prevent a nuclear explosion in an American city. Your last two paragraphs are very good and true. My only comment would be that we can and should do both. Fighting the evil of Islamic Jihad is a government responsibility and reforming the Christian church is responsibility of Christians.

BTW, what do you think of government run Canadian Health care?

donsands said...

"The same power the government is using today to "protect" us from the radical muslims will one day be used to persecute any Christian who refuses to compromise the truth of God's word."

I wouldn't say it's the same power. I would equate the power protecting us similiar to the power that protected us from Hitler.
However, with the wrong people leading government, I agree, we are in for some persecution.

I pray God would give us godly leaders, who love Christ, and would die for Him.

Patrick Henry said, "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ! For this very reason peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here."

And: " I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings. ... Are we disposed to be of the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things, which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it. Let us not, I beseech you, sir, deceive ourselves. ... Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!"

jazzycat said...

Donsands,
Exactly. Ole Patrick had it right. We should be vigilant to keep our freedom from all enemies, foreign and domestic. The far left in America has become extremely intolerant of views they do not like. While they champion the speech of the perverted and radical left, they find all kinds of reasons why non-politically correct speech from the Christian right should not be tolerated. Yes, persecution is coming for Christians that practice and teach Biblical values in the US. I believe those that conform and compromise their Christianity to the values of the world will be called the true Christians, whereas, we (conservative Christians) will be persecuted as fundamentalist radicals. This is already beginning to happen through the entertainment media and far left media. The far left media exerts tremendous pressure on the party of their choice to conform to their agenda. This is undeniable as we watch example after example of conservatives being shouted down and being rejected a forum on so-called “tolerant” universities around America. Invitations to conservatives sometimes are given and then withdrawn when the “tolerant” left objects. When you hear the term “hate speech”, just remember they are not talking about the free speech rights of Ward Churchill and the left, they are talking about those that dare teach and mention conservative principles such as the sins that are mentioned in the Bible.

I guess I rambled a bit, but Don mentioning Patrick Henry kinda got me fired up.

donsands said...

" ..those that dare teach and mention conservative principles such as the sins that are mentioned in the Bible."

Yep, it's getting harder and harder to stand for Christ and His Word against the flood of the anti-christ's morality.

50 years ago if someone said there would be homosexual marriages, and that these marriages would include gay men who supposedly pastor churches, we would have scoffed at the very idea, and said, "That's beyond all belief".
50 years from now, unless the Lord intervenes, there will be things beyond, beyond belief.

Good thread Jazzy. Important stuff.

Susan said...

It would be an even greater fear if I did not believe and rest in the fact that God is indeed in complete control over His creation.

So true, Gayla. It's the only thing in which I can take hope any more for our children and their children. who knows what this nation will look like in 100 years - or even 50? Who knows if we'll even have a majority speaking English (but that's another issue)? Although that may tie in if the illegal minority (could come majority) convert to Islam... All kinds of possibilities - not least of which an underground church here. It's so sad, but thank God for His encouragement to set our eyes on a heavenly city. All this will burn anyway. And our inheritance to our children - Lord willing - is an eternal one.

jazzycat said...

Don,
Thanks again for your input.

Susan,
Good points. These are possibilities that some do not even consider, but are not beyond the realm of possibility.

Thank God that our utlimate security and hope lies in Him and not worldly princes.

Jim said...

Wayne, perhaps the biggest problem is that the govt. is reticent to actually name the source of terrorism; that being fundamental Islam itself and the states that sponsor it.

It was not until Reagan's term in office that the US officially recognized the Vatican as a independant state. Prior to that the US had rejected any notion of papal authority and sovereignty. The early Americans knew the evils of embracing Catholicism.

Now today we are attempting to do the impossible; bring democracy to a nation while at the same time elevating its religion to the same heights as the Christian faith. Have we forgotten that liberty is a byproduct of the gospel, not the goal?

I believe it was John Adams that said something like "only a moral people can be governed democratically". When we lose our morality and righteous standing we also lose our freedoms and security.

"Unless the Lord guards the house, they labor in vain that watch"

p.s. Our Canadian healthcare system has some pro's and cons.

The benefit is equal access regardless of your financial situation, no one is refused because they are poor.

Actually, our health care is run provincially which means that each province has different rules and procedures on how they implement coverage.

One of the drawbacks of publicly funded healthcare is that we are not always on the cutting edge of technology and sometimes have to wait for services. Also our tax bill is a lot higher than in the US.

jazzycat said...

Jim,
Good points. I am also frustrated by our government referring to the war as a war on terror. Terror is the tactic the Jhadists are using not who we are fighting.