Some Perspective, Please

Last night we discussed the horrible fact that the individual shot in London was not a terrorist, but as it appears now, an innocent. Atrios brings his perspective to the table, and you will never guess who is to blame for this incident.

Why, Bush and the Right!

This issue is not those who are second-guessing cops who are frequently in horrible positions. I wasn’t there and I don’t know what they knew or what they thought they knew or what their orders were. Some of that will be revealed. The issue is the cheerleaders of the “shoot first ask questions later” attitude, and the critics of those who dare suggest that shooting someone the government has labelled “terrorist suspect” absent trial is problematic.

Bush and the Right generally have become masters of this rhetorical trick. Criticize the Bush policies in Iraq? You’re attacking the troops! Criticze the Bush policies in Gitmo? You’re attacking the troops! Criticize the 101st Fighting Keyboarders glee about the killing of “bad” brown people in London? You’re attacking London bobbies!

It’s long past time for the Right to take responsible for its own actions and rhetoric, and stop trying to pawn it off on those on the front lines.

Not the terrorists who exploded the bombs in the tunnels. You know them- the ones who put all of England and the rest of the western world on heightened alert, created the situation that caused the area this fellow lived in to be under surveillance.

Not the individual, who ran from the police, refused to stop or obey their challenges, and jumped a turnstile in Stockwell station.

Not even the police themselves, who actually surveilled the individual, followed him, found his behavior suspicious, challenged him, and when he refused to respond adequately, pulled the trigger.

Nope. The guilty parties are Bush and the right. And note how although Duncan admits to not knowing the situation and acknowledges that he wasn’t there and can’t attest to the mindset, this wasn’t just a tragedy in which the authorities were acting to stop another bombing, this was evidence of an attitude of ‘shooting people without a trial.’

No doubt Atrios supports his Lt. Gov., Catherine Baker Knoll.

*** Update ***

You guys say I am all washed up. Fine.

I disagree. Atrios is launching a petty little attack on ‘Bush and the right,’ trying to claim that the issue is ‘the cheerleaders of the “shoot first ask questions later” attitude.’ As if anything Bush or ‘the right’ said would have had any impact on this shooting whatsoever. This happened because dozens of people were murdered and hundreds were injured when a bunch of deranged bastards blew up a bunch of subway cars. And then they tried again. And then, they placed an area under surveillance, and found a person leave there, dressed suspiciously, who refused to comply with verbal directs from police, and fled into a subway and jumped aturnstile. Police then shot him.

This has nothing to do with the rhetoric of ‘Bush and the right.’ It has nothing to do with any glee even the biggest fools at Free Republic might have expressed. And to suggest otherwise, to pretend that ‘Bush and the right’ and their ‘rhetorical tricks’ has anything to do with the sad facts on the ground is absurd and a lame attempt at a smear.






89 replies
  1. 1
    Patrick says:

    The tragic death of innocent people because of police mistakes is exactly within the realm of the desired effects of terrosism. I view this poor chap’s accidental killing as basically the work of the terrorists. The police are under so much pressure to prevent any more bombings that there is bound to be similar situations in the future.
    I have a feeling that this guy was spooked for some reason and just didn’t want to be arrested. I think I would be pretty freaked out too if I knew I was being tailed by a bunch of armed men. Unfortunately his instinct to run had a very bad result.

  2. 2
    Al Maviva says:

    Yep, it’s Bush’s fault. The ’93 WTC bombings – Bush. The Ethiopian embassy bombings in what, 97? Bush. The Cole bombing in October 2000 – Bush. The 9/11 attacks – Bush. Police in London shoot the wrong guy by mistake* – Bush. We wouldn’t have these stupid terrorism problems, if it wasn’t for the warmonger Bush.

    *This assumes, of course, that the black hand of Karl Rove wasn’t behind the London bombings, as a means of drawing attention away from Plame Gate. The tail wags the elephant…

  3. 3
    neil says:

    If you’re really interested in placing blame where it belongs, I suggest that you acknowledge that it was the British authorities who put “all of England” under heightened alert, including the rather heightened policy of executing suspected suicide bombers on sight. Additionally, it was the British authorities who put the area this fellow lived in under surveillance.

    A relative who arrived from London today told us that in Brixton, a dark-skinned guy who sees a bunch of cops charging at him is generally considered wise to run. The new reality, it seems, is sinking in slowly. I wonder why? According to most of the blogs linked on the right, it seems like they should be eagerly welcoming the new order.

  4. 4
    SomeCallMeTim says:

    Give me a break, John. Atrios isn’t arguing that Bush shot the guy. He’s saying the right wing blogospheric triumphalism about violent action is creepy and unthinking. He’s saying that the wingnuts have a tendency to ignore the other side of the equation: someone’s dead and we’re not sure why. He’s saying

    “Several of you have asked if I have any thoughts about the new London bombing attempts or the subsequent shooting. Other than ‘If he was a terrorist, shoot him again,’ I have nothing to offer.”

    was a little gross, given the circumstances, and that most wingnuts lack the moral development to recognize that even after the fact. (And your statement, particularly by blogospheric standards, was hardly that bad when you said it.)

    I’m not sure where you’d disagree with him.

  5. 5
    Sojourner says:

    John, you’re misreading what he said. He’s basically saying that there is a strong “shoot first, ask questions later” strategy going on in London and that resulted in the death of an innocent. This same logic got us into the war in Iraq. Invade first, then worry about whether there is evidence to support it.

    Both applications of the same strategy result in the loss of innocent life.

    It’s a stretch to say that he is arguing that the Bushies are responsible for the death in London. He is arguing that the same strategy applies to both situations.

  6. 6
    neil says:

    (The new reality, that is, being that cops will execute you if you run away, whereas before they didn’t even have guns and would simply beat you up. In the U.S., you could already expect to be shot by running from cops who were telling you to freeze, and it is easy to forget that it’s not the same everywhere.)

  7. 7
    ppGaz says:

    Welcome to Moral Relativism 201 — Advanced exercises in trying to put lipstick on your pig, by pointing out the bad makeup job on someone else’s pig.

    Hey, your government thrives on it. Why shouldn’t the blogosphere?

    Accidental police shootings are hardly the creation of Bush’s bullshit War on Evildoers. Both are bad things, and each can stand on its own two feet as a bad thing.

  8. 8
    John Cole says:

    Only in the blogosphere can you quote someone at length stating something, and people will show up in the comments claiming you are ‘misrepresenting that person.’

    Boggle.

    Atrios’s argument is that “Bush and the right” have ‘created’ an atmosphere in which it is ok to ‘shoot first and think later.’

    It is utter bullshit.

  9. 9
    demimondian says:

    Whoa, John! Did you read the quote you posted? Here’s the key snippet:

    Criticize the 101st Fighting Keyboarders glee about the killing of “bad” brown people in London? You’re attacking London bobbies!

    Go over to Free Republic — see the creeps still saying the cop should get a medal? What happens if I criticize them? “You’re attacking the police! Don’t you understand that they need to make snap judgements sometimes!”

    Sorry, dude. The cop or cops who shot the guy should face suitable investigations. That’s what happens when a cop kills somebody; it’s SOP. If they acted in a dangerous and time-critical situation, then…well, it’s a sad and catastrophic thing, and we go on with life. But you don’t deserve a medal for killing someone who isn’t a threat, even if you could have reasonably concluded that he was.

  10. 10
    space says:

    Atrios’s argument is that “Bush and the right” have ‘created’ an atmosphere in which it is ok to ‘shoot first and think later.’

    No, he’s saying that the Right fosters an atmosphere that makes it difficult to evaluate these situations because the very act of questioning what happened is portrayed as disloyalty.

    You conflate that to mean that he is saying “Bush and the Right” caused the incident. Huh? What’s that logic? Nothing could be further from the truth.

    He’s not blaming Bush for it happening. He’s noting the response of the Right *after it happened*.

    BTW, you quote Atrios as saying Bush “created” the atmosphere. Atrios never used the word “created” and your putting it in quotation marks is, at best, a misrepresentation of his remarks and, possibly worse, a dishonest attempt to bolster your argument.

  11. 11
    space says:

    Also, what’s with accusing Atrios of supporting Catherine Baker Knoll? I have no knowledge if the incident other than what you described. But, if true, she should resign (or, at the very least, make a pretty big public apology). I have no problem saying that as a Democrat and I see no reason why Atrios wouldn’t feel similarly.

    If you have any evidence that Atrios does support Knoll’s actions, you might want to print that. Attributing views to someone and then implying they are a hypocrite isn’t very honest either.

  12. 12
    ppGaz says:

    Atrios’s argument is that “Bush and the right” have ‘created’ an atmosphere in which it is ok to ‘shoot first and think later.’

    It is utter bullshit.

    Just to be clear, I agree.

    Atrios’s argument is that “Bush and the right” have ‘created’ an atmosphere in which it is ok to ‘shoot first and think later.’

    No, he’s saying that the Right fosters an atmosphere that makes it difficult to evaluate these situations because the very act of questioning what happened is portrayed as disloyalty.

    Absolutely agree. The war-heads now are so sensitive, because the public has caught on to the disconnect between their nonsense, and reality, that they’ll attack anything that so much as raises an eyebrow to their useless dogma.

    There is a rich subtext of things in this story. One that interest me is, even if the guy HAD been a bomber, his destruction would not mean a thing to the reality of the terror threat now faced by London …. and a lot of other places. Not a damned thing.

    For perspective:

    “We are winning the war on drugs.” — Richard Nixon

    Oops, wrong bunch of liars. I meant:

    “The insurgency is in its last throes.” — Dick Cheney

    Heaven forbid that anyone question these demigods. Unpatriotic! Soft on terrorism! Supporting the terrorists! Girly! Hurting the troops! Etc Etc Etc.

    Fuck them. It’s time to pull the plug on their bullshit.

  13. 13
    SomeCallMeTim says:

    The issue is the cheerleaders of the “shoot first ask questions later” attitude

    Read the part you quoted again. The cheerleaders of an attitude. Are you joking with this?

  14. 14
    Jack Arthur says:

    Oh c’mon, haven’t you heard? The radicals on the right never takes the blame for their screw ups. Bush’s so-called “war on terrorism” has been a horrible failure, and yet our frantic friends on the right can’t wait to cook up some appropriate scapegoats when the consequences of the Little President’s incompetence come a-cropper. Which is almost daily. Nearly 4 years after 9-11 Osama bin Laden continues to murder people almost at will, and all the right seems to be capable of doing is whining about the mean people who point out this disgusting fact.

    Unfortunately for them there is a special prosecuter in Washington now at work that is about to tear down the right’s tower of passive-aggressive horseshit. Prepare for scenes such as these.

  15. 15
    TIm F says:

    Whether or not Atrios has a general point, and I think that he does, this is a pretty shitty test case with which to make that point. There’s no doubt that rightwingers generally pretend that criticizing them equates with criticizing troops and nonsense like that. After a while it gets beyond irritating. That fallacy deserves to be knocked down and the sooner the better.

    However this case has nothing to do with that phenomenon. Here you have a guy who practically begged for a beat-down. If this guy didn’t realize that subways would be crawling with jumpy, trigger-happy cops then he’s too dumb to breed. If I were a cop in that situation I’d have shot the asshole as well.

  16. 16
    MI says:

    Sorry John, I have to echo the greater sentiment so far. I think you’re interpreting Atrio’s comments completely wrong.

  17. 17
    ppGaz says:

    However this case has nothing to do with that phenomenon. Here you have a guy who practically begged for a beat-down. If this guy didn’t realize that subways would be crawling with jumpy, trigger-happy cops then he’s too dumb to breed. If I were a cop in that situation I’d have shot the asshole as well.

    Un-fucking believable. The disgusting tirades just continue over this story.

    Apparently to you, asshole, people are just generally disposable in the balls-to-wall keystone cops version of a War on Terror?

    You should be ashamed. I’m ashamed to even be in the same space with you.

    I swear, just when I think the blogosphere has hit bottom, somebody surprises me.

    You suck.

  18. 18
    Marcus Wellby says:

    If I were a cop in that situation I’d have shot the asshole as well.

    July 24th, 2005 at 12:26 pm

    If you were a cop you’d most likely shit your pants in that situation — hence your blog-bound display of machismo. Typical.

  19. 19
    John Cole says:

    Sorry John, I have to echo the greater sentiment so far. I think you’re interpreting Atrio’s comments completely wrong.

    That is fine. If someone can explain to me (that hasn’t happened yet) what the hell he meant, I will gladly change my mind. This shooting has nothing to do with ‘Bush and the right.’ Red Ken was exactly right (see the original Malkin post).

    No one should blame the police for this. That doesn’t mean you don’t work to make sure this sort of thing doesn’t happen again. That doesn’t mean that any way you slice it or dice it, an innocent person isn’t dead.

    I don’t know wht the hell else Atrios was trying to say other than a cheap ‘rhetorical trick’ of his own. And I don’t hold back to bash Michelle when I have an opportunity.

    PPGAZ- I don’t think TIMF meant that he should have been shot on general purpose, I think he meant that had he been in the same position, he would have probably done the same thing the police did. That isn’t excusing the action, it is attempting to understand it.

    The choice of the word asshole is, however, unfortunate.

  20. 20
    ppGaz says:

    The choice of the word asshole is, however, unfortunate.

    I’ll take your point on the strength of an assumption that you know the gentleman better than I do. If I misread his post, I’ll withdraw the blast.

  21. 21
    Steve says:

    This is a classic scenario where both sides are wrong. The people who claim that any death is justified as long as the killers were trying to do something related to fighting terrorism are wrong. (This is an outgrowth of the well-meaning “you shouldn’t Monday-morning quarterback our troops” theme.) The people who want to string the police up without a trial are also wrong.

    Here’s the similarity between the three cases Atrios mentioned. Think of a soldier in Iraq who shoots an innocent civilian at a checkpoint. Think of an interrogator at Gitmo who abuses a prisoner hoping to get information. Think of a policeman who shoots an innocent man believing him to be a suicide bomber. In all three cases, we have people who are trying to do their job and, in my opinion, are entitled to the benefit of the doubt. But that mean they should automatically get exonerated, either, as if no error in judgment would be too grievous when you’re fighting the war on terror. What Atrios means is that you can’t even talk about these incidents, and ask for a rational dialogue on whether the behavior was appropriate or not, without some wingnut saying “how dare you question our glorious troops.”

  22. 22
    KC says:

    Note: The shooting happened in England, not America. And I can’t remember Bush being popular over there.

  23. 23
    Emma Zahn says:

    For what it’s worth

    “There’s battle lines being drawn.
    Nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong.”

    No one, except maybe the participants, has enough information about what happened to jump to any conclusions.

  24. 24
    rilkefan says:

    John, the first point Atrios makes (or tries to make) is that the conservative response to the recent terrorism has been to increase police power and reduce personal liberty to a much greater extent than the left would like.

    In fact I think an open debate about how much freedom we’re willing to give up and how many self-inflicted civilian casualties are acceptable would be a good thing. The reaction by the right to the left’s attempt to have such a debate has been not exactly lukewarm. Hence Atrios’s second point.

  25. 25
    John Cole says:

    I can buy that Steve.

    PPGAZ- I don’t know TIMF personally, but he isn’t generally a bombastic grenade chucker like say, you or me. So I think the more generous interpretation of his comments is probably in order.

  26. 26
    ppGaz says:

    he isn’t generally a bombastic grenade chucker like say, you or me

    ;-)

    Got it. The blast is withdrawn, feel free to delete it.

  27. 27
    Tim F says:

    Sure, I suck. The city has faced two rounds of subway bombings, and one day later this guy jumps a turnstile and evades police into a packed car with a trenchcoat on. Sure, maybe I would have simply shit my pants and stood there. And maybe I would have asked him nicely to step out of the subway car so that I could process him for fare-jumping. Who knows what I would do. That’s really beside the point. The point being that this guy cannot possibly expect a measured response from the police from that behavior, in that location and on that day.

    I used harsh language because it seems totally unreasonable to me to expect this individual to be treated like an ordinary fare-jumper in this particular circumstance. In some circumstances you have to display some awareness of your environment or else you bear a significant responsibility for what happens to you.

  28. 28
    Mike S says:

    This has nothing to do with the rhetoric of ‘Bush and the right.’ It has nothing to do with any glee even the biggest fools at Free Republic might have expressed. And to suggest otherwise, to pretend that ‘Bush and the right’ and their ‘rhetorical tricks’ has anything to do with the sad facts on the ground is absurd and a lame attempt at a smear.

    I think I agree more with john here. I think Atrios’ point about rhetoriacal trick is correct but I don’t think it belongs in this situation. I do reserve the right to change that opinion depending on further reaction from the wingnutosphere.

    I think this is just a screwed situation all around. The cops made a split second decision that I find hard to fault. The victim made a huge mistake but I’m not sure what I’d do with 5 guys in street clothes, carrying guns and chasing me. I’m saddened by the people who show no sympathy for the victim, and disgusted by the people who blame the cops(although I have seen very little of that.) I think there are a hell of a lot of people who are losing touch with their humanity.

  29. 29
  30. 30
    SomeCallMeTim says:

    Atrios is deploring the tendency of that wing of the Right that controls the Republican party to believe that a violent act done for a legitimate purpose is its own justification. Look at a comment from the prior thread: Nope; no sympathy here really… you run from police and jump a turnstyle a few days after a massive terrorist bombing, you get shot in the head. That is, if you are ass enough to lose your head and run, however innocent of terrorism you are, you deserve to die. Not, “It’s unfortunate but understandable that something like this happens.” Not, “There must be a better way, but you can’t blame the cops in that specific situation.” The man ran, and that act means he deserved to die. Violent act (shooting a man) + legitimate purpose (stopping a bombing) = it’s OK. Same thing in Abu Gharib: violent act (rape and videotape thereof) + legitimate purpose (gathering information about insurgeants) = it’s OK. There is no cultural norm towards self-criticism, or normative principle that allows them to worry about issues like this.

    It’s the “American Might, Fuck Ya!” attitude, as if that’s all there is to be said, that’s gross and troubling, and I don’t believe you feel differently.

  31. 31
    dorkafork says:

    Steve’s comment is quite sensible and correct, except for the part about “what Atrios means is that you can’t even talk about these incidents, and ask for a rational dialogue on whether the behavior was appropriate”. I think if Atrios wanted to ask for a rational dialogue on whether the behavior was appropriate, he could always start in the comments of his own post. The commenters there seem to have made up their mind on the cops’ behavior already.

    (For example this comment:
    Yeah, five to the head seems excessive but let’s wait for the investigation to be complete before we start calling people scum.
    Incog

    Fuck off, troll. Go defend murder on the freeper boards, asshole.
    steve | 07.23.05 – 11:29 pm

    Atrios calls incog deliberately obtuse later.)

  32. 32
    SomeCallMeTim says:

    Which is to say, Spidey’s clearly a Democrat.

  33. 33
    Tim F says:

    The posts above mine show a benefit-of-the-doubt that I hope I deserve. I try to post from a level head but some things set off pique for reasons that are hard to explain. Mike said what I meant so say but with less spleen.

  34. 34
    John Cole says:

    Can I just say I hate Kleiman’s new affinity for blue text. If I do anything like that, feel fre to flame me til the end of time.

  35. 35
    dorkafork says:

    FWIW, I certainly don’t think the man deserved to die, I do think the police acted completely reasonably and appropriately given the circumstances, which tragically resembled a possible terrorist attack. That’s at least if the initial reports are correct. I’d note that the reports say that the address under surveillance “was found on documents in one of the rucksacks used in Thursday’s failed bomb attempts.” Also there is no indication that the plainsclothes policemen had their guns drawn at the time they told him to stop. That’s something we will probably not know until after the investigation.

  36. 36
    Jeff G says:

    “No, he’s saying that the Right fosters an atmosphere that makes it difficult to evaluate these situations because the very act of questioning what happened is portrayed as disloyalty.”

    Well, when your “evaluation” consistently starts from the premise “BUSH LIED! ROVE MANIPULATED! CHENEY EATS BABIES WITH SHARON AND PISSES OIL!”, it signals to your interlocutor that the “questioning” that is forthcoming likely springs from a well that is already be polluted.

    So Atrios’ contention that it is the “Right” that is fostering the poisonous atmosphere is at best dubious, and at worst willfully blind.

  37. 37

    “Only in the blogosphere can you quote someone at length stating something, and people will show up in the comments claiming you are ‘misrepresenting that person.’”

    Be that as it may, a “find” on this page clearly shows that the first instance of “misrepresent” showing up on this page is yours, quoted above. Can you please quote anyone as having, in fact, claimed that you are “misrepresenting that person”?

    If not, what the heck are you talking about? (Note that I’m not commenting on anything else Atrios or you said; I just happened to read this thread, and can’t make sense of your above comment, unless I hypothesize that you looked at the Sojourner post of 11:00 a.m. of “John, you’re misreading what he said” and misread that as “misrepresenting.”)

  38. 38
    Sojourner says:

    So Atrios’ contention that it is the “Right” that is fostering the poisonous atmosphere is at best dubious, and at worst willfully blind.

    Oh please. There are folks on this blog who support outing a CIA operative because they don’t like her husband, refer to torture at Abu Ghraib as harmless fraternity pranks, and are completely unwilling to challenge Bush’s grounds for the Iraq war. When those who don’t blindly support this administration challenge its activities, we’re accused of being traitors and unpatriotic. The number of righties on this blog who are made at all uncomfortable by the actions of this administration can be counted on one hand.

    So spare us the righteous right position that they are innocent when it comes to creating a poisonous atmosphere. Just ask the Wilsons who have proudly served this country at some physical risk to themselves for decades but had the “nerve” to challenge this administration. They are the poster children for the penalties of not demonstrating complete and blind loyalty to King George and his buddies.

  39. 39
    Don Surber says:

    Blame the terrorists for this. In June, the Brazillian might have been chased a while or likely ignored. 7/7 and this Mini-Me 7/7 have London a-jittered. They are scared.

    This is war. Innocent people are killed in it. Cops ask you to stop, please do so. If you travel and don’t know the language, I advise you to learn the word Halt first.

    I say that from the experience of having the Polizei confront me, flash their Uzis and realize it was a mistaken identity. I trust they caught the fellow they sought at 2 a.m.

  40. 40
    Mike S says:

    So Atrios’ contention that it is the “Right” that is fostering the poisonous atmosphere is at best dubious, and at worst willfully blind.

    Right, because you have never blamed the left for anything, nor accused them of “hating America.”

  41. 41
    Don Surber says:

    Sojourner sez: “Oh please. There are folks on this blog who support outing a CIA operative because they don’t like her husband, refer to torture at Abu Ghraib as harmless fraternity pranks, and are completely unwilling to challenge Bush’s grounds for the Iraq war.”

    Your point?

    CIA operatives shouldn’t play politics. M15 and CIA are rivals. Bush cited Brit intel. CIA decided to show him up by sending Wilson. I am not convinced that Saddam was not seeking nuclear materials. After all, one of his first acts as prersident — after assassinating a third of the parliament — was to buy a nuke plant from the French. Jaccques Chirac showed up for the ceremony. Thank Allah the Israelis blew it up.

    Abu Ghraib? Our guards were duly prosecuted.

    The left didn’t care about the thousands who were tortured or raped or executed or some combination therein under the management of one Saddam Hussein.

    The left was silent when their president went in and bombed Bosnia without UN authority. Bosnia posed no threat to its neighbors. It was not sponsoring suicide bombers in Israel, as Saddam did. It did not claim to have amassed any weapons of mass destruction.

    By the way, the left’s president was all hot to trot about Iraq in 1998 — until that impeachment thing passed over. Then he went back to sleep, doing nothing about the USS Cole. Had he, Gore would be prez.

  42. 42

    British Police: Sorry But Policy Is Shots To Head

    No where can you see the dilemmas facing government officials and security officials in the ongoing war against terror clearer than in London where police have apologized for the tragic killing an innocent Brazilian man suspected of being a suicide bom…

  43. 43
    John Cole says:

    If not, what the heck are you talking about? (Note that I’m not commenting on anything else Atrios or you said; I just happened to read this thread, and can’t make sense of your above comment, unless I hypothesize that you looked at the Sojourner post of 11:00 a.m. of “John, you’re misreading what he said” and misread that as “misrepresenting.”)

    Of course the Sojourner “misread” statement is what I stated later as ‘misrepresent.’ You do know the difference between infer and imply, don’t you?

    Sojourner could not care less if I ‘misread’ anything. In fact, she wouldn’t know if I had just misread something, absent a response. What she was reacting to was what in her estimation was my misrepresentation of Atrios’s remarks.

    Why do you always sidetrack things down a pedantic side path?

  44. 44
    Tim F says:

    Abu Ghraib? Our guards were duly prosecuted.

    Now we’re making a different argument entirely. Atrios’s point was arguably relevant for the London subway incident because it was not a controlled environment with an already-subdued suspect. In that case police behavior is hard to second-guess.

    Prisoner abuse is an entirely different story. The poster boy for rightwingers self-righteously wrapping themselves in the mantle of The Troops, Abu Ghraib involved restrained detainees in a controlled environment. There is no excuse whatsoever for what happened there, and for practically every right-winger to run about claiming that critics hate troops in general is embarrassing.

    The idea that nobody more senior than Lyndie Englund bears responsibility for prisoner abuse is ludicrous. You hold a commander responsible for widespread failures by troops under his command. At the very least you don’t promote him.

    With respect to Atrios’s argument, you made a very good point about the subway shooting and a very bad point about torture. Call it 1 for 2.

  45. 45
    Sojourner says:

    CIA operatives shouldn’t play politics.

    Trying to make sure that accurate evidence gets out about the case for war is hardly playing politics. For those who believe that truth matters, it’s the patriotic thing to do. The Wilsons didn’t start siding with the Dems until AFTER the Repubs outed her. Perhaps they, like me, are sickened by an administration that will do anything to get what it wants, including distorting the truth.

    Our guards were duly prosecuted.

    But the tolerance for torture came from the civilian commanders.

    The Bush administration in recent days has been lobbying to block legislation supported by Republican senators that would bar the U.S. military from engaging in “cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment” of detainees, from hiding prisoners from the Red Cross, and from using interrogation methods not authorized by a new Army field manual.

    And you still want to believe that Abu Ghraib was due to a few bad apples? You can’t be serious.

    The left didn’t care about the thousands who were tortured or raped or executed or some combination therein under the management of one Saddam Hussein.

    The bulk of these activities occurred with a Republican president who gave Hussein friend of US status. Don’t blame the lefties for that one.

    The left understands that the US can’t save the world. However, we do our best to make sure that the US isn’t responsible for these things happening on our watch. The righties, however, want to turn a blind eye to our own country’s misbehaviors.

    There was a genocidal war going on in Bosnia. I didn’t hear too many complaints when the US got involved, right alongside their allies. Not at all the same thing as Iraq where there was no war and whatever genocide had occurred was long over.

    The reality is we’ll never know what Clinton would have done. However, Clinton was big on international cooperation so it’s extremely unlikely that he would have started an unprovoked war unilaterally.

  46. 46
    Sojourner says:

    Sojourner could not care less if I ‘misread’ anything. In fact, she wouldn’t know if I had just misread something, absent a response. What she was reacting to was what in her estimation was my misrepresentation of Atrios’s remarks.

    What? Don’t speak on my behalf. I assumed you misread it to mean more than what it said.

    Now you’re doing the same thing to me.

    Stop it.

  47. 47
    John Cole says:

    What? Don’t speak on my behalf. I assumed you misread it to mean more than what it said.

    Now you’re doing the same thing to me.

    Stop it.

    ARRRGHH. Sojourner. You have no way of knowing whether I misread something or not. That is something I would do internally. You can only react to whether I misrepresented an argument. Now, I may have misread something and that lead to my misinterpretation, which you then reacted to and stated I “misread” Atrios.

    Thanks, Gary.

  48. 48
    Jeff G says:

    “So spare us the righteous right position that they are innocent when it comes to creating a poisonous atmosphere. Just ask the Wilsons who have proudly served this country at some physical risk to themselves for decades but had the “nerve” to challenge this administration. They are the poster children for the penalties of not demonstrating complete and blind loyalty to King George and his buddies.”

    I don’t recall saying “the Right” was innocent. Nor do I believe I was assuming a “righteous” position. What I said was “Atrios’ contention that it is the ‘Right’ that is fostering the poisonous atmosphere is at best dubious, and at worst willfully blind” — and I supported that by pointing out that some on the Left (Atrios, fortunately for this discussion, among them) start from a premise that necessarily makes any discussion of issues impossible.

    And no, Mike S, I have never blamed “the Left” for “hating America” — although I have accused some on the Left of caring more about regaining power than they do about prosecuting the War on Terror.

    Which brings me back to my original contention — still unaddressed (except with “YOUR SIDE DOES IT TOO”!) — that if Atrios is indeed saying in his post that “the Right fosters an atmosphere that makes it difficult to evaluate these situations because the very act of questioning what happened is portrayed as disloyalty,” he and those supporting him here have to answer my counterclaim that when said evaluations begin from the premise that Republicans are evil, ill-intentioned, and liars, what atmosphere do they expect to encounter?

  49. 49
    neil says:

    And then, they placed an area under surveillance, and found a person leave there, dressed suspiciously, who refused to comply with verbal directs from police, and fled into a subway and jumped aturnstile.

    I do not want to live in a place where dressing suspiciously and refusing to cooperate with the police is an offense punishable by on-the-spot execution. There are lots of places where life is like that, and I do not want to live in any one of them.

    Don Surber Says:

    Blame the terrorists for this

    Blaming the terrorists for things which the cops are to blame for is a stupid way to make people skeptical of anti-terrorism.

  50. 50
    neil says:

    Well, when your “evaluation” consistently starts from the premise “BUSH LIED! ROVE MANIPULATED! CHENEY EATS BABIES WITH SHARON AND PISSES OIL!”, it signals to your interlocutor that the “questioning” that is forthcoming likely springs from a well that is already be polluted.

    And when your response begins by invoking a straw-man which reflects a rude deliberate misunderstanding of your opponent, it signals to your interlocutor that the argument which is forthcoming likely suffers from a similar dishonesty.

  51. 51
    Jeff G says:

    The cops are responsible for the shooting. They are not responsible for the conditions that led to the shooting.

    Semantic arguments over how to parse out blame is the luxury of those who feel relatively safe.

  52. 52
    Jeff G says:

    “And when your response begins by invoking a straw-man which reflects a rude deliberate misunderstanding of your opponent, it signals to your interlocutor that the argument which is forthcoming likely suffers from a similar dishonesty.”

    …You mean like when a premise begins with “the Right” is fostering a poisonous atmosphere that crushes all dissent — on a board where dissenters are allowed to post freely by a member of “the Right”?

    And really, do you need me to go find instances of Atrios suggesting that the Bushies are liars and crooks before you accept that I’m NOT introducing a straw man argument? Should I locate such instances on Kos? Howsabout if I skip those and find instances of Howard Dean saying such things? Or Harry Reid? Or Ted Kennedy?

    The cognitive dissonance here, I must say, is astounding.

  53. 53
    Geek, Esq. says:

    It seems that he’s not addressing the issue of blame for the bombings, or this incident.

    Rather, he’s addressing specifically rightwing troglodytes like Malkin and Gibson who get a sick sense of satisfaction from seeing cops kill people.

  54. 54
    r4d20 says:

    ” If I were a cop in that situation I’d have shot the asshole as well.”

    Then I hope the person you love most is the next one shot in the back of the head.

  55. 55
    Mike says:

    “So Atrios’ contention that it is the “Right” that is fostering the poisonous atmosphere is at best dubious, and at worst willfully blind.”

    Atrios was doing nothing more than being an opportunist little twit. There’s no moral high ground here. it’s just a pathetic attempt to criticize Rethuglicans (as the idiots say). Nothing more. He was just playing to his crowd of moonbats again. As with all left-wing zanies, best to to ignore them, or better yet, capture all their snide, condescending comments into some words you can stick in a flyer to give people for helping elect more Rethuglicans. I can think of no better use for sites such as Kos, Atrios, WashingtonMonthly and DU.

  56. 56
    MI says:

    Don’t have much to add, other than to say for the record and to build some consensus, I share Steve’s take on what Atrios was saying with that post.

  57. 57
    rilkefan says:

    r4d20 – An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.

    Mike at 15:41 – is your problem with Atrios actually posts like this?

  58. 58
    Sojourner says:

    Sojourner. You have no way of knowing whether I misread something or not.

    I had assumed you misread it because I respect you enough to assume you would not misrepresent it. To me, misrepresent suggests an intent to mislead while misread is to not understand or to unintentionally misinterpret.

  59. 59

    Rhetorical pearls

    Goldstein: As I noted over in the comments at Cole’s place, if—as one of the commenters insists—Atrios is simply saying that “the Right fosters an atmosphere that makes it difficult to evaluate these situations because the very act of questioni…

  60. 60
    neil says:

    BUSH LIED! ROVE MANIPULATED! CHENEY EATS BABIES WITH SHARON AND PISSES OIL!

    It is simply dishonest to say, as you did, that every evaluation of Atrios’s starts from this premise. For instance, he does not appear to have mentioned Ariel Sharon on his blog since 2003.

    I believe it may be true, though, that you view every evaluation of his through these shit-colored lenses in order to discount them. This could also explain why you have such a poor comprehension of what he is saying.

    Another reason could be that he is largely talking about the poisonous discourse created by the presence of people like -you-, who come bounding forward to smear anyone who’s left-wing with cryptic accusations of anti-Semitism, without the intellectual honesty to even try to comprehend his point. Well, you have aided him quite well in making it, to one person at least.

  61. 61
    Sojourner says:

    when said evaluations begin from the premise that Republicans are evil, ill-intentioned, and liars, what atmosphere do they expect to encounter?

    We didn’t begin with that position – it’s one we’ve come to after watching the Bushies in action for the past 5 years.

  62. 62
    neil says:

    And really, do you need me to go find instances of Atrios suggesting that the Bushies are liars and crooks before you accept that I’m NOT introducing a straw man argument?

    No, what you need to do is demonstrate how Atrios is making this claim. If you can’t, as I suspect is the case, then you are introducing a straw-man argment.

  63. 63
    Mike S says:

    ..You mean like when a premise begins with “the Right” is fostering a poisonous atmosphere that crushes all dissent—on a board where dissenters are allowed to post freely by a member of “the Right”?

    No. We mean when the loudest voices on the right, ie Talk Radio and FOX, accuse us of hating America, the troops and cops. We mean people like Sean Hannity and Rush and Rove accuse us of treason or that we want to lose the war.

    Maybe you’ve been living on another planet and missed all of those things but we have been attacked for voicing any dissenting views and it has come from every aspect of the current GOP. John is the exception not the rule.

  64. 64
    neil says:

    One final point. Try as you might, you will not find anyone on DailyKos, Atrios, or any other left-wing blog defending the right of al-Qaida bombers to murder innocent people on the London subway. However, you will have no trouble finding many right-wing blogs defending the right of plainclothes police officers to murder innocent people on the London subway.

    This is disgusting, but not unexpected, since the same division applies to torture carried out by people working under Saddam Hussein and torture carried out by people working under George W. Bush.

  65. 65
    Mike S says:

    Atrios was doing nothing more than being an opportunist little twit. There’s no moral high ground here. it’s just a pathetic attempt to criticize Rethuglicans (as the idiots say). Nothing more. He was just playing to his crowd of moonbats again. As with all left-wing zanies, best to to ignore them, or better yet, capture all their snide, condescending comments into some words you can stick in a flyer to give people for helping elect more Rethuglicans. I can think of no better use for sites such as Kos, Atrios, WashingtonMonthly and DU.

    Powerline, LGF, Freeperville, Malkin and many others are the epitome of higher thought and never engage in the same.

  66. 66
    Smithee says:

    Neil gets accused of saying he believes there’s a moral equivalence between President Bush and Saddam Hussein in

    3
    2
    1..

  67. 67
    jg says:

    The left didn’t care about the thousands who were tortured or raped or executed or some combination therein under the management of one Saddam Hussein.

    Neither did the right until Bush turned it into his excuse for invading Iraq after we discovered Saddam had no wmd program at all. Its the basis for the ridiculus ‘the left would prefer Saddam was still in charge’ rant.

  68. 68
    Mike S says:

    The left didn’t care about the thousands who were tortured or raped or executed or some combination therein under the management of one Saddam Hussein.

    I call bull sh**. It’s the left that brings human rights abuses up through groups like Amnesty International, a group that is consistantly savaged by the right. It was the left that for years tried to get people to pay attention to the Taliban while people like Dana Rhorbacker were praising them. It’s the left that complains about our allies, like Uzbecistan IIRC, boiling disidents.

    Suddenly the right found Saddams torture to be wrong but their silence on so many other places is deafening.

  69. 69
    John Cole says:

    I had assumed you misread it because I respect you enough to assume you would not misrepresent it. To me, misrepresent suggests an intent to mislead while misread is to not understand or to unintentionally misinterpret.

    The word misrepresent means to “To give an incorrect or misleading representation of.” Intentionality has nothing to do with it. Which is why when someone is is misleading someone intentionally, people usually say something to the effect of ‘so and so is willfully misrepresenting’ or ‘so and so is intentionally misrepresenting…’

  70. 70

    “Of course the Sojourner “misread” statement is what I stated later as ‘misrepresent.’ You do know the difference between infer and imply, don’t you?”

    Quite, but they’re hardly analogous here. To accuse someone of misrepresenting something is only a step below accusing them of lying. It’s accusing someone of deliberately and knowingly putting forward something in a false manner. I would be quite offended if someone accused me of misrepresenting something. On the other hand, both inferring and implying are perfectly neutral, above-board, and inoffensive things to accuse someone of engaging in.

    Similarly, “misreading” is a perfectly innocent thing to do; we all misread things from time to time; certainly I do.

    So if someone says that you “misread” something, they are providing a perfectly acceptable and utterly inoffensive explanation for a resulting statement. If you then say that their suggestion that you misread is the same as saying they accused you of misrepresntation, then you are not, um, accurately representing what they said.

    “Sojourner could not care less if I ‘misread’ anything. In fact, she wouldn’t know if I had just misread something, absent a response. What she was reacting to was what in her estimation was my misrepresentation of Atrios’s remarks.”

    I don’t know Sojourner from a hole in the wall, so I have no opinion; thank you for this explanation from your point of view, which goes some ways towards helping me understand why you said what I asked about.

    “Why do you always sidetrack things down a pedantic side path?”

    Well, John, I respect you, and therefore when you say something that I don’t understand, I ask you about it; would you prefer I did not, or that I responded in some other fashion, instead? I’m sorry if you find my asking you “pedantic,” but it really seems like a better idea than deciding I can mind-read you, doesn’t it?

  71. 71
    Krusty Krab says:

    Mike S:

    Powerline, LGF, Freeperville, Malkin and many others are the epitome of higher thought and never engage in the same.

    Illustrating once and for all the moral high road that Mike S walks: Grade school. “But Johnny does it too!” is an excuse most of us have outgrown long ago.

  72. 72
    Randolph Fritz says:

    On something of a tangent, let’s remember that the police officers chasing poor Jean Charles de Menezes were plainclothesmen–in other words, for all he knew, he was being chased by a bunch of gangsters, a thing more common in Brazil than London. He was probably dressed heavily because the UK is a lot cooler, even on “hot” days, than tropical Brazil. He was coming out of a house under surveillance because he was an electrician working there.

    Violence makes us stupid. Guns and bombs make us very stupid.

  73. 73
    Tim F says:

    However, you will have no trouble finding many right-wing blogs defending the right of plainclothes police officers to murder innocent people on the London subway.

    I am not on the right, nor am I representative of anybody other than myself. The reason this story made me angry, and angry with the dead person, is that the whole thing is unnecessary. An innocent person didn’t need to die and the British police shouldn’t deserve the taint that this case brings to them. It would be different if the London police were some sort of rogue force itching for the opportunity to shoot innocent people. In that case this story would be a perfectly telling illustration what’s going on. I can’t accept that. I think that the truth is closer to 180 degrees reversed, that the police are doing the best job they can given extraordinarily grave circumstances and that the suspect’s behavior invited an overwhelming response. So I blame the suspect for what in other circumstances would be an pedestrian lapse of judgment and I blame the terrorists for changing the environment to the point that this ordinary lapse became a fatal mistake.

    I’ve already apologized for my spleen. Dead people don’t deserve epithets. But I can’t absolve him entirely of blame.

  74. 74
    Mike S says:

    Give me a friggin break. Pointing out the nutters who spout vitriol is not allowed appearently. Of course a daily, if not hourly, “Clinton did…” shows just how grown up the current GOP is.

    I’d put my morals up against your’s anyday.

  75. 75
    John Cole says:

    To accuse someone of misrepresenting something is only a step below accusing them of lying. It’s accusing someone of deliberately and knowingly putting forward something in a false manner. I would be quite offended if someone accused me of misrepresenting something.

    Nonsense. To misrepresent something requires no malicious intent. To misread is synonymous with misinterpreting or misunderstanding something, and then from misunderstanding of what I have misread, I would MISREPRESENT what I had read incorrectly. Like, say, in a blog post. Like, say, this one.

    And again, there is no way to know that I have misread something unless I ‘misrepresent’ the remarks, which is what Sojourner believed I did. That she ascribed it to misreading the Atrios post rather than lying is another matter altogether, but in her initial statement, when she claimed I ‘misread’ the Atrios piece, what she was really saying that I misrepresented it.

    It is not my fault you guys have attributed all sorts of negative meanings to the word misrepresent. Words have denotative and connotative meanings, and you are all wrapped around the axle on the latter.

    And for the record, when she said I ‘misread’ the statement, I did not think she was implying that I had done it willfully or intentionally. Again, your baggage, not mine.

  76. 76
    Rick says:

    John,

    Better reach into the old medicine cabinet and pull out the usual opiate to pacify the Kos/Atrios masses: a Pat Dobson-is-Coming scary story.

    Cordially…

  77. 77
    Jeff G says:

    You’re out of your league, Gary. Quit while John is still trying patiently to teach you that signifiers can attach themselves to multiple signifieds, and that he is in a better position to know what he meant than you are.

  78. 78
    Stormy70 says:

    Better reach into the old medicine cabinet and pull out the usual opiate to pacify the Kos/Atrios masses: a Pat Dobson-is-Coming scary story.

    Dobson is coming?! Where? He’s scarier than those poor, mistreated terrorists.

    PS Screw Atrios.

  79. 79
    Jeff G says:

    Okay, Neil. I surrender. Atrios doesn’t believe Bush lied, nor does he believe Republicans are evil, that Sharon is evil, Rove is master manipulator, or that Cheney is a Halliburton shill. Well, at least, I can’t demonstrate it, not being privy to what’s in his soul and all. Of course, I could probably find you plenty of links on his site where he makes the case for all of those things, but he doesn’t seem to have a site search, and I’m just not interested enough in convincing you to comb through his archives.

    Of course, now that you and I have reached an agreement that Atrios doesn’t think any of those things (though, let’s stipulate that we reached said agreement by dint of my not having “demonstrated” that he does, rather than, y’know, whether or not he actually does, which few people aside from you would dispute), perhaps you should fill Sojourner in on the party line…

    Oh. And incidentally? I didn’t know that “the Right” meant only “the loudest voices on the right, ie Talk Radio and FOX.” I suppose that’s my fault, though. I forgot to read your mind.

  80. 80
    Sojourner says:

    John:

    Whatever.

  81. 81
    Mike S says:

    Oh. And incidentally? I didn’t know that “the Right” meant only “the loudest voices on the right, ie Talk Radio and FOX.” I suppose that’s my fault, though. I forgot to read your mind.

    Two things strike me about this comment. One is that this whole post was about Atrios, someone with minimul influence on the left, saying something that I and many others think here was misplaced. Yet he was attacked by some as if he was important.

    Yet when I point out that the loudest voices on the right are doing exactly what he accuses them of this is the best you can come back with? And I didn’t include people like Karl Rove, Tom Delay, Ricky Santorum and a whole host of others.

    So basically Atrios is ruining the discourse but the power behind the GOP doesn’t count because John Cole allows comments.

    Glad we got that cleared up.

  82. 82
    Josh says:

    Perhaps the terrorists will teach those evil Bush lovers a lesson by using non-lethal methods for their next mass casualty attack. Then the leftists will actually have a point about the use of overwhelming force on a suspected mass murderer running at full speed to potential victims. For the moment tho, they are just incredibly whiny about being unable to flay some policemen for an accidental death, and are making a flimsy attempt to spread blame around to as many targets as they possibly can.

    Most sane people understand that the person who is president of the US at the time makes no difference when someone living in a terrorized state ACCIDENTALLY kills an innocent. The less than sane people would love to believe that they know the secret source of “evil” which causes these things to happen.

    There are some liberals who believe that the Christian religion itself is the reason why Bush took over America and is waging war. The crazy things some people believe, it is just crazy.

  83. 83
    Syl says:

    This entire argument here is so unnecessary. The incident is both sad and tragic yet understandable at the same time. I would think we can all agree on that.

    What I see is both sides getting their hackles up because they assume what the reaction of the other side will be. The Left will react emotionally and the Right will say it couldn’t be avoided. Then the Left will accuse the right of not being compassionate. Then the Right will accuse the Left of not using their heads.

    What the incident proves is that the world is not the same place we thought it was in the nineties. We simply have to adjust to that fact.

  84. 84
    Sojourner says:

    The crazy things some people believe, it is just crazy.

    Yeh, like starting a war against Hussein has anything to do with stopping al Qaida. Crazy, crazy.

  85. 85
    neil says:

    Okay, Neil. I surrender. Atrios doesn’t believe Bush lied, nor does he believe Republicans are evil, that Sharon is evil, Rove is master manipulator, or that Cheney is a Halliburton shill. Well, at least, I can’t demonstrate it, not being privy to what’s in his soul and all.

    A total and shameless attempt to change the subject. You are not analyzing Atrios’s argument, you are analyzing what kind of a man you find him to be, and you are making it quite plain that you believe that anyone who thinks the Bush administration is wrong does not deserve to be comprehended. And that fucked up mentality is exactly what Atrios was writing about, so you certainly made yourself look like an ass.

    Of course, I could probably find you plenty of links on his site where he makes the case for all of those things, but he doesn’t seem to have a site search, and I’m just not interested enough in convincing you to comb through his archives.

    What does this have to do with anything?

    Of course, now that you and I have reached an agreement that Atrios doesn’t think any of those things

    I never tried to say he didn’t. I said it was unfair for you to dismiss his argument, which had nothing to do with any of those things, on the basis of those things. In fact, I don’t see much of a difference between “Everything Atrios says, he just says because he’s a liberal” and “Everything _ says, he just says because he’s Jewish.”

    And your comeback reads about like this: “What, so you’re saying he’s -not- Jewish?”

  86. 86

    “To misrepresent something requires no malicious intent.”

    John, I’m perfectly willing to grant that the word can be used in either fashion. I’d note that most dictionary definitions do indeed cite it as including intentionality, but of course a few usages do not. I’d also suggest that random testing of strangers will show quite a few, and probably a majority of random testees, consider it a pejorative. I suggest a bit of random testing on your own to ask if people would be offended if you described them as “misrepresenting” something.

    “And again, there is no way to know that I have misread something….”

    There’s certainly no way to know if someone misread something, of course. On the other hand, plenty of alternative paths to inferring, correctly or not, a misreading are available other than asserting that you have misrepresented what you read.

    “…when she claimed I ‘misread’ the Atrios piece, what she was really saying that I misrepresented it.”

    Except that now you’re putting words in her/his mouth.

    Of course, both of you are engaging in a bit of assuming, and both apparently in good will.

    “It is not my fault you guys have attributed all sorts of negative meanings to the word misrepresent.”

    You wanted “misrepresent” in quotes, by the way.

    Well, yes, in the sense that it would be helpful if you were aware that a great many people indeed, if not the majority, commonly read “misrepresenting” as a pejorative.

    The fact is that if even only two reasonably intelligent people, who are complete strangers to each other, “-misread-” (not your words, but your implication) you as using a word the way it is defined as being frequently used, you actually are kinda responsible for having used a word that it’s reasonable for people to interpret that way, even if you yourself do not hold to that interpretation. Communication is a two-way street, and it’s not on to insist that a commonly held usage is something people shouldn’t use, even if you would prefer they did not because you do not.

    To insist that “misrepresent” can’t be interpreted in a standard fashion, which is to say, pejoratively implying intentionality, simply doesn’t fly, although I certainly accept that that was how you meant it.

    Here:

    3 entries found for misrepresent.
    mis·rep·re·sent Audio pronunciation of “misrepresent” ( P ) Pronunciation Key (ms-rpr-znt)
    tr.v. mis·rep·re·sent·ed, mis·rep·re·sent·ing, mis·rep·re·sents

    1. To give an incorrect or misleading representation of.
    2. To serve incorrectly or dishonestly as an official representative of.

    mis·repre·sen·tation n.
    mis·repre·senta·tive (-znt-tv) adj.
    mis·repre·senter n.

    Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
    Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
    Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

    Main Entry: mis·rep·re·sent
    Pronunciation: mis-“re-pri-‘zent
    Function: transitive verb
    : to make a misrepresentation about intransitive verb : to make a misrepresentation —mis·rep·re·sen·ta·tive /-“re-pri-‘zen-t&-tiv/ adjective —mis·rep·re·sen·ter noun

    Source: Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law, © 1996 Merriam-Webster, Inc.

    misrepresent

    v 1: represent falsely; “This statement misrepresents my intentions” [syn: belie] 2: fake or falsify; “Fudge the figures”; “cook the books”; “falsify the data” [syn: fudge, manipulate, fake, falsify, cook, wangle]

    Source: WordNet ® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University

    We’re not wrong to read the word this way. Sorry. I’m happy to accept your update that that was not what you intended to convey, though. I’d really suggest, however, that you in future consider that many, if not most, people will read “misrepresent” as a pejorative term, if you don’t want to have this conversation again with someone else. I don’t think I’m misrepresenting the issue.

  87. 87
    am says:

    The piece of Black’s crap which really sticks out is this:

    “and the critics of those who dare suggest that shooting someone the government has labelled “terrorist suspect” absent trial is problematic.”

    umm, no, that’s not what happened and Black knows it. This was not a case of extrajudicial justice. The guy was shot because he was in a crowded place and was suspected of wearing a bomb belt.

  88. 88

    Strength and power in numbers?

    As if we needed another reminder right now that police make mistakes, the front page of today’s Philadelphia Inquirer features yet another article (this one written by three authors) about the bumbling police in Camden, New Jersey. How could 150…

  89. 89
    Andrew Milner says:

    As Richard M. would say if he were still with us: “It isn’t the crime that gets you, it’s the cover up.” It’s about time Sir Ian Blair resigned, but I suspect one reason for the delay is the potential newspaper headlines:
    “Blair resigns” and “One down, three to go”.
    Don’t do the crime if you can’t wear the slime.

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  2. Rhetorical pearls

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