Although we disagree on some fairly substantial subjects, I do really enjoy Andrew Sullivan's work. I find him to be a smart and thoughtful writer, who is not afraid to admit mistakes. He brings class to blogging.
Having said that, Cheesefrog and I have had a little back and forth concerning my post on the EOs and torture from the other day. I understand Cheese's point. And I think Andrew has done an excellent job of articulating the answer to that point. Check it here. Having directed you, here is fine cut from the post:
William Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law!
Sir Thomas More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the
law to get after the Devil?
William Roper: Yes, I'd cut down every law in England to do that!
Sir Thomas More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil
turned 'round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This
country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man's laws, not God's!
And if you cut them down, and you're just the man to do it, do you really think
you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the
Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!
That reminded me a quote I first discovered in the 7th grade, in Ms. Grant's class. In the prep materials for the Bicentennial Competition, was First they came...by Friedrich Gustav Martin Niemöller. It may very well be the first thing that really stuck with me, philosophy-wise.
"In Germany, they came first for the Communists, And I didn’t speak up
because I wasn’t a Communist;
And then they came for the trade unionists, And I didn’t speak up
because I wasn’t a trade unionist;
And then they came for the Jews, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t
And then . . . they came for me . . . And by that time there was no one
left to speak up."
Seems apropos here.