Torture Still Prime-Entertainment

Three Cheers for Doonesbury today!

Unfortunately, prominent half-wits take their own values from this TV show. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia told an assembly of judges in the summer of 2007: ““Jack Bauer saved Los Angeles . . . . He saved hundreds of thousands of lives… Are you going to convict Jack Bauer?”

I would wager that many congressmen also rely on ’24’ as their primary info source on torture.

This is Attention Deficit Democracy at its best.

9 thoughts on “Torture Still Prime-Entertainment”

  1. It sure is comforting to know that we have an independent Supreme Court acting as a check and balance against abuse of power from the executive branch!

  2. Never ceases to surprise me how many people I talk to who are anti-war and ostensibly anti torture, are fans of this show. It's like they don't see the connection between the propaganda and the actual torture policy. I guess we should be thankful we have idiots in the Supreme Court and the military who are shameless enough to admit they are basing policy on a tv show – otherwise no one would believe it was possible.

  3. I’m totally opposed to torture. I’m also a huge supporter of free speech. I’ve thought about the issue, I can only think of two approaches: 1. Education 2. Censorship. Which would you prefer, and can you think of any other approaches?

  4. America likes to act like some of the more violent and nasty tendencies don't represent the values of most. What's scary is to realize that this isn't true. At least its scary if you don't like facing the realities of what America really is. When you see tv shows like 24 or movies like the Saw series be so popular, it can send a chill up your spine as to what many of your fellow citizens are capable of doing and supporting.

    Of course, America was torturing long, long before Jack Bauer arrived on the scene. There's a modern myth that this began with Jack Bauer and Dubya. Go read some Mark Twain about the Philippines. Or read about Greece after WWII. Or maybe read about the Phoenix program in Vietnam. Or, since the School of the Americas protest is this weekend, read some history about the US in Latin American. probably has some good material. Or watch any of the 20 other TV shows that say its ok for a cop to beat a confession out of a suspect. Or remember that until the Warren court in the sixties, it was generally ok for the cops to do so. Or realize that there's plenty of examples since of cops still doing beating suspects … then listen to the cries of so many Americans that we should allow our police to do this. Or realize that some of the reservists at Abu Gharaib held 'day-jobs' as prison guards in US prisons. Or maybe just listen to the number of people who constantly think its ok to say that we should nuke another country. Hillary thought that this was a popular enough sentiment that she was willing to use threats to nuke Iran in her last campaign.

    The really scary thing is realizing that there are large numbers of Americans who think torture, beatings and killings are just fine and wonderful. Shows like 24 aren't really an aberration.

    Although, to get a true read on America, it would be interesting to try to make a show where African-Amerian or Latino-American characters were torturing what appeared to be white surburbanites. Maybe one where a team of special government agents are trying to track down the billions that have been stolen from the federal government in recent years. My guess is that show would get a very different reception.

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