I saw a headline somewhere today that said, "Bush and McCain reach deal on torture." It's funny on its syntactical face, simply because the mental image of two people sitting at a big table for the purpose of coming to some great Three-Fifths Compromise on what constitutes torture makes me laugh a little. But not laugh Ha Ha; more of a laugh of derision, a "heh!" rather than a "hoo hoo hoo ha!"
See the difference?
In any case I am glad that we finally as a nation forced the commander in chief (who never actually served in any military actions and therefore never risked capture and torture by the enemy himself) to acknowledge publicly that the United States does not endorse torture. Obviously it will still occur as long as this compassionate conservative/rule of law administration can find a way to pull out some toenails and electrocute some genitals in the service of Truth, Freedom and Democracy. But at least we made him say it: torture is wrong.
It's pretty shocking it took this long to get the President on board. A reasonable person would assume that one of the best means of protecting our men and women in uniform is by maintaining the moral high ground on the subject of torture. Without that, any captor can say, "hey--the CIA would do it to us, so it's game-on for you." You'd think a President from a Strong Military/Dems are weak on defense party platform would connect the dots just a little more easily than he did.
Although, as Tony Kushner once said, "What used to be called liberal is now called radical, what used to be called radical is now called insane, what used to be called reactionary is now called moderate, and what used to be called insane is now called solid conservative thinking."