Thursday, October 06, 2005

My Brain Hurts

This morning, just before I arrived in the office, I tuned into The Glenn Beck Program on one of my local FiveMinuteHate™ radio stations. I couldn't believe what I heard.

Glenn Beck, while babbling about the new torture legislation, interviewed someone purporting to be a military intelligence officer who claimed to have been a specialist in extracting information using techniques he openly called torture. The guest gave his name as Mitch, but averred that this was a pseudonym. He claimed to have used, or having been involved in the use of, a variety of torture techniques under orders from the U.S. government, and he gave the following techniques as examples: 1) using 1200 psi pressurized air hose to blow out a prisoner's eardrums; and 2) using a drill to open up live, healthy teeth.

Now, I don't believe for a minute that Mitch was telling the truth. He was trying to sound convincing, and he wasn't at all successful with me, but I wouldn't be surprised if some of the more stupid listeners in Glenn Beck's audience were completely taken in by his act. That Glenn Beck would put this guy on the air and let him put on an act like this came as no surprise to me.

Here's what nearly made me turn around and go back to the City for my wife and a jump kit to head for the Canadian border: Glenn Beck himself appeared to take the guy completely seriously and proceeded to shower him on the air with admiration, to praise him for his heroism, and to thank him explicitly for torturing people in all our names.

I sincerely hope Media Matters caught this act at the end of his show today. If they did, I will link to whatever they put up about it later today. I don't understand why Americans don't punish anybody who sponsors this bastard's radio program with a crushing boycott. This makes no sense to me.

Update 1.0: Okay, this is unacceptable. I've been banging on Media Matters all day trying to get somebody there to tell me I'm not crazy, that I really did hear Glenn Beck do this. No response. This is completely unacceptable. Yeah, I understand that people are going ballistic over William O's latest nonsense. Getting them to focus on the problem of continuing escalation in the overt political support for using torture as a matter of official policy might be a little too much to ask. My point is that it shouldn't be. My god. We're talking about torture for fsck's sake! TORTURE! The man is selling TORTURE as a positive ideal! I'm serious here. This is life and death stuff, people— I cannot remain at peace with a people who condone this. Do NOT test the limits of my pseudo-pacifism, you bastards. I have a breaking point, and you really don't want to find out what I'm capable of doing when I decide that I'm going to be an asshole.

Update 2.0: In my grief, I was expecting way too much from the nice people at Media Matters. Mojo just called me on the telephone to inform me that they have indeed found the transcript and done a very nice job documenting it. I am only slightly crazy, but I really did hear him say those terrible things.

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