He lectured us about "virtue" in his Inaugural Address, and he was quite right to do it. But ever since, he has thrown virtue under the campaign bus—an attorney general who lied under oath, tax cheats at Treasury and HHS, and now (h/t Instapundit), despite all the pious talk about putting an end to torture, he seems to be retaining what is arguably the worst component of our "interrogate the terrorist" programs: rendition.
I well remember the first time I heard about this noxious practice. An intelligence-community official told me, with evident satisfaction, "We're sending these guys to places where they don't have Miranda rights. Or lawyers." I didn't like it then, and I
don't like it now. It's a total moral copout: We enable torture while claiming to have abolished it.
This is what appears to be the SOP of the Obama administration—moral lectures, immoral practices. They pose as virtuous citizens and tell us what to do in myriad ways, and then install serial offenders in the highest positions. They pose as human-rights defenders, and then turn over our prisoners to some of the worst human rights offenders.
This is a prescription for moral and political disaster, because either the electorate will figure it out, and deliver a stinging rebuke to Obama and his people (with considerable disruption at a time when we need to seriously address our many problems), or there will be an immoral free-for-all, to the ruin of the common good.
Monday, February 2, 2009