W/r/t investigating the Bush administration’s war crimes, Larison says
The best argument that witnesses testifying against the idea of forming a commission seem to have had is that the abuses of power and crimes in question are not as numerous as they were under Pinochet and apartheid. Now that’s a claim to moral authority.
So the political class who oppose these truth commissions — and much more any sort of criminal trials for members of the Bush administration — label those who support such investigations as “liberal score-settlers.” While many may be dyed-in-the-wool Democrats supporting the human rights of marginalized peoples and attacking anti-environmentalist president who inspired so many of their bumper stickers, they’re not the only ones who oppose torture and wish to bring those who authorized torture to justice.
Conservative premises lend themselves to powerful critiques of torture. Torture is against the law, the rule of law is fundamental to a healthy society, torture undermines a healthy society. Same thing for extraordinary rendition or searching and seizing without warrants.
Do you respect the Constitution and the Founders’ vision of America? Then you probably don’t agree with Bush’s OLC that between two and three of the first ten amendments don’t apply with the President doesn’t want them to.
American prestige? It went down the tubes because we tortured.
If you can argue against a particular thing no matter the premise with which you begin, there’s a damn good chance that thing is evil.