The age of no consequences
...One of the most painful principles of our age is that scandals are doomed to be revealed — and to remain stinking there before us, unexcised, unpunished, unfinished.
If this Age of Rhetoric has a tragic symbol, then surely this is it: the frozen scandal, doomed to be revealed, and revealed, and revealed, in a never-ending torture familiar to the rock-bound Prometheus and his poor half-eaten liver. A full three years ago, the photographs from Abu Ghraib were broadcast by CBS on Sixty Minutes II and published by Seymour Hersh in The New Yorker; nearly as far back I wrote a book entitled Torture and Truth, made up largely of Bush administration documents that detailed the decision to use “extreme interrogation techniques” or — in the First President of Rhetoric’s phrase — “an alternative set of procedures” on prisoners in the War on Terror.
And yet nothing happens. The Democratic Congress could change that. But first, it looks like we will have to change the Democrats. And maybe wake up a bit ourselves.