< 1 2
 
   
 

Refuting the support of torture under any circumstances

 
PapaTrio
 
Avatar
 
 
PapaTrio
Total Posts:  7
Joined  02-05-2011
 
 
 
06 May 2011 20:25
 

This just in… “Torture May Have Slowed The Hunt For Bin Laden, Not Hastened It” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/06/torture-may-have-slowed-h_n_858642.html

From the article:
(i) “I think that without a doubt, torture and enhanced interrogation techniques slowed down the hunt for bin Laden,” said an Air Force interrogator who goes by the pseudonym Matthew Alexander and located Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, in 2006.

(ii)  But subjected to physical and psychological brutality, “they gave us the bare minimum amount of information they could get away with to get the pain to stop, or to mislead us,” Alexander told The Huffington Post.

“We know that they didn’t give us everything, because they didn’t provide the real name, or the location, or somebody else who would know that information,” he said.

(iii) ...trained interrogators found that traditional, rapport-based interviewing approaches are extremely effective with even the most hardened detainees, whereas coercion consistently builds resistance and resentment.

The ticking bomb argument falls flat given the informed opinion of these folks.

 
Beth Purkhiser
 
Avatar
 
 
Beth Purkhiser
Total Posts:  1
Joined  20-06-2017
 
 
 
20 June 2017 17:58
 

It’s funny to me that people trying to refute Sam’s assertion that there are some circumstances in which torture is appropriate are including a number of specific circumstances to prove their case. Sam might agree torture is counterproductive, or even wrong, in those circumstances, but they don’t cover every circumstance. Consider this circumstance. What if the only way you could get the endless torture of a person in the next room to stop was to torture for a few minutes the only person who could stop it?

 
Brick Bungalow
 
Avatar
 
 
Brick Bungalow
Total Posts:  4312
Joined  28-05-2009
 
 
 
20 June 2017 19:42
 

I don’t agree with much of what Sam says about ethics but his treatment of torture is more nuanced that you describe. He doesn’t endorse torture as the de facto means of extracting information. What he says is that assuming torture was the most efficient means it should not disqualified ethically if the results of ignorance was harm greater than torture. It’s an argument for utilitarianism as is the rest of TML.

I’m not qualified to say how effective torture is exactly but I have difficulty believing it’s useless. If torturing a captive never provided critical intelligence or consistently produced false information why hasn’t it been abandoned? Do we assume that military intelligence is simply sadistic? (I don’t ask with rhetorical sarcasm… I’m willing to consider this as a real possibility)

That said, I think I agree. I think torture is probably the wrong approach in most situations but I don’t know how to call it in terms of policy.

 
d0rkyd00d
 
Avatar
 
 
d0rkyd00d
Total Posts:  314
Joined  15-03-2016
 
 
 
21 June 2017 13:02
 

I always thought Harris’ position on torture was that it would be more ethically confounding if it DID result in quality information.  Since it doesn’t, and as you mentioned since it could be counterproductive, there is no justification for torture.

 

 
SkepticX
 
Avatar
 
 
SkepticX
Total Posts:  14268
Joined  24-12-2004
 
 
 
21 June 2017 14:19
 
d0rkyd00d - 21 June 2017 01:02 PM

I always thought Harris’ position on torture was that it would be more ethically confounding if it DID result in quality information.  Since it doesn’t, and as you mentioned since it could be counterproductive, there is no justification for torture.


That’s only because, apparently, you read more soberly and critically than the majority who have read TeoF ... than the rather large majority, it would seem.

 
 
Nikolai Narcisse
 
Avatar
 
 
Nikolai Narcisse
Total Posts:  10
Joined  02-06-2017
 
 
 
23 June 2017 21:45
 
PapaTrio - 02 May 2011 06:58 AM

I must conclude that Sam has some other agenda going on when he maintains his line about torture.

Could you clarify what you mean by this line? It sounds vaguely conspiratorial.

 
 < 1 2