5.22.2009

in which a wingnut is tortured for six seconds and changes his mind

From The Raw Story. I've posted only the gist because Muller's language offends me too much to reproduce here.
Chicago radio host Erich "Mancow" Muller decided he'd get himself waterboarded to prove the technique wasn't torture.

It didn't turn out that way. "Mancow," in fact, lasted just six or seven seconds before crying foul. Apparently, the experience went pretty badly -- "Witnesses said Muller thrashed on the table, and even instantly threw the toy cow he was holding as his emergency tool to signify when he wanted the experiment to stop," according to NBC Chicago.

. . . .

"I wanted to prove it wasn't torture," Mancow said. . . . The upshot? "It is way worse than I thought it would be, and that's no joke," Mancow told listeners. "It is such an odd feeling to have water poured down your nose with your head back...It was instantaneous...and I don't want to say this: absolutely torture."

"Absolutely. I mean that's drowning," he added later. "It is the feeling of drowning."

"If I knew it was gonna be this bad, I would not have done it," he said.

Video here.

In case you missed Christopher Hitchens' earlier demonstration of why waterboarding is torture, or want a refresher, I blogged about it here, with a link to his story.

18 comments:

redsock said...

So this guy lasts six seconds and is visibly shaking afterwards. Hitchens said he was having flashbacks/nightmares long after his brief session.

And the US government has done and is doing this to innocent people dozens and dozens and dozens and dozens of times.

(Now ... who will be the first wingnut to volunteer to have his scrotum slashed with a razor every month? .... Hannity? ... Rush?)

deang said...

And the US government has done and is doing this to innocent people dozens and dozens and dozens and dozens of times.With some individuals having it done multiple times per day for months on end, in addition to being beaten bloody by US military thugs on a regular basis, undergoing medical torture at the hands of military doctors, and perhaps witnessing detainees being killed in front of them.

And if they protest via hunger strike, the oh-so-ethical US military doctors shove feeding tubes, deliberately selected to be too wide in order to be maximally painful, up their noses and down into their stomachs, at which point their stomach is pumped full of bulky nutrients. Reports are that the tubes are covered in blood when they are extracted.

Pure evil, but apparently the more supportive of this you are, the more "conservative" you're said to be.

Yeah, I'd love to know that Hannity and Limbaugh were suffering some of this. I sometimes also think that the writers and producers of "24" should undergo this too, but maybe I'm just being irrationally vengeful.

James said...

Here's what I want to know: if waterboarding is "no big deal" and "no worse than a fraternity prank", why would anyone use it? If it's so trivial, then it's certainly of no use in coercing confessions.

This week's Doonesbury strips have been very good on the subject.

James said...

Oh, one other fun point: a lot of people have dismissed Hitchens's article on the grounds that Hitchens is a fat, effete drunkard. But I wouldn't be surprised if Hitchens outlasted this guy...

L-girl said...

Re Redsock's and Dean's comments, that is precisely why I couldn't bear to post Muller's quotes in the TRS piece.

redsock said...

Hitches did -- and his set-up seemed far worse.

L-girl said...

"Here's what I want to know: if waterboarding is "no big deal" and "no worse than a fraternity prank", why would anyone use it? If it's so trivial, then it's certainly of no use in coercing confessions."

Excellent question!!

impudent strumpet said...

I'm sorry, I know this is a serious topic, but this is driving me crazy and I just can't help but ask...

Of all the possible things in the world, how did they land upon a toy cow?

L-girl said...

"Of all the possible things in the world, how did they land upon a toy cow?"

I assume that was part of his "prank". He goes by the moniker "Mancow" - pronounced Man Cow. Cows are probably part of his shtick.

Amy said...

Just reading about it and imagining it is torture.

impudent strumpet said...

Oh wow, I didn't even read it as man-cow. I just processed it as a proper name and moved on.

The more I read about torture the more I'm surprised that they find it worthwhile. And I'm not even talking from a human decency perspective (since the people responsible for figuring out whether it's a worthwhile endeavour obviously aren't thinking from a human decency perspective.) It takes a lot of manpower and resources to do, and the victims are going to get so fucked up as to be useless rather quickly.

L-girl said...

But it's the ultimate demonstration of power and terror. That's why it's a hallmark of every fascist regime, everywhere, always.

It's only not worth it if you think of the goal is getting information. When the actual goals are terrorizing controlling a population, it's incredibly effective.

redsock said...

or you want to create a lot of terrorists for later. or you are working on various mind control projects and need some subjects. or there are a lot of sadists in the military. many reasons come to mind.

impudent strumpet said...

Even that could be achieved more efficiently. Torture them for an hour once a month? Every once in a while just take them to the torture room and leave them there in anticipation? Release them after maybe a year or two so they can go back and tell the others? If they're not going to do basic human decency, they should at least do an efficiency audit.

James said...

When the actual goals are terrorizing controlling a population, it's incredibly effective.
It's looking more and more like the actual goal was to gather "intelligence" to support the pre-established claim that Iraq and Al Qaeda were in cahoots. Since waterboarding and the other "enhanced" techniques used were originally designed to elicit false confessions for propaganda purposes, they were ideal for this.

janfromthebruce said...

And to think that liberal leader Iggy provided cover as an "unhuman rights" expert for the Bushites and merry group of torturers.
Mere words, after most civilized people, and most Canadians were abhorred by torture just does not cut with me - ever.
I could square that peg.

L-girl said...

"Even that could be achieved more efficiently."

These fascist states don't usually go in for efficiency. Excess is generally the order of the day.

"It's looking more and more like the actual goal was to gather "intelligence" to support the pre-established claim that Iraq and Al Qaeda were in cahoots.

I think the specific justifications will vary, but the overall view is the same.

"And to think that liberal leader Iggy provided cover as an "unhuman rights" expert for the Bushites and merry group of torturers."

That's right. Long before I even knew he was Canadian, I was seeing those words in the New York Times. The words Liberal partisans now try to tell us didn't mean what they plainly meant.

Kim_in_TO said...

Those who believe that torture actually works as intelligence gathering are the same people who believe that wars can be won, or that terrorism should be fought by invading and occupying countries.