May 2, 2009

Laura Ingraham, subbing for Bill O'Reilly last night on Fox, decided to bounce off reportage of the second-guessing now coming from ex-CIA chief Porter Goss, who's claiming that Obama's release of the torture memos had demoralized the agency.

So she invited on a couple of "experts," who start out by giving us the amusing prospect of Fox pundits complaining about TV-crew ambush tactics when conducted by ABC. (They may have a point, but hearing it on Fox is rich.)

One of the "experts," a New York City detective/tough guy named Bo Dietl, argues that the Obama administration's decision to eschew torture will come back and haunt them thus:

Dietl: What would happen, God forbid, if your two daughters were kidnapped by Al Qaeda, and they said they were going to do something, and we had information from people, where they were. Mister Obama, what would you like me to do? You don't want me to interrogate anybody?

Eh, sure, Bo, you can interrogate anyone you need to. But torture?

Of course, this all sounds like a lot of Jack Bauer fantasizing. Though you get a sickly feeling, watching Dietz, that torturing detainees might not just be a fantasy for him.

And why, exactly, does anyone consider Porter Goss a credible critic of the release of the memos?

After all, Goss is himself potentially one of the people who might be targeted for investigation, since he was CIA director for many of those years, was involved in the destruction of the torture tapes. He also is well remembered for having appointed Dusty Foggo to the CIA's No. 3 position -- before he was convicted of fraud and sent up the river.

Talk about the criminalization of politics. As I say, it is indeed a problem -- and the solution is to get the criminals out of politics.

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