Sunday, April 13, 2008

Oh, the Places You'll Go

Apropos of nothing, I find it a bit peculiar to stumble across the factoid that torture apologist John Yoo is a couple of weeks younger than I am. It's probably just me, but the process of relative aging can be condensed thusly: realizing you're older than the women you use for sexual objectification (Penthouse Pets; porn stars; etc.); realizing you're older than most of the sports figures (actors; musicians) you enjoy; realizing you're older than the people who get paid lots of money to tell you and everyone else how to live their lives.

That last has always seemed somehow to be an ever-distant stage, something our parents might have to contend with but we never would. Yet Barack Obama is only five or six years older than me, and I suppose that's disconcerting enough for whatever reason. Still, there is something about being so close in age (if, to tremendously understate the case, not life experience) to the primary formulator of excuses for official barbarity.

Think of it -- it took a thirty-something Korean immigrant to come up with the novel idea that if you simply called your captives "detainees", and coupled it with the heinous notion that anything the unitary executive chooses to do is by definition legal (but, of course, for him only), you could treat them like fucking farm animals and no one could ever say shit. People were executed during and after World War 2 for exactly the sort of deeds Yoo has found suitable to institutionally underwrite for this gang of thugs and creeps. Even better, we all get to pay his (and their) salary.

What a country!

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