Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Channeling Bush’s Inner Sadist


Channeling Bush’s Inner Sadist: An Insight Into His Obsession with Torture
Submitted by BuzzFlash on Thu, 11/01/2007

We were writing a review of a BuzzFlash premium of a collection of Garry Trudeau's "Doonesbury" cartoons last weekend when we serendipitously came across this tidbit, posted in a 2004 Associated Press article (watch for the end of the excerpt):

Cartoonist Garry Trudeau, who has skewered politicians for decades in his comic strip "Doonesbury," tells Rolling Stone magazine he remembers Yale classmate George W. Bush as "just another sarcastic preppy who gave people nicknames and arranged for keg deliveries."

Trudeau attended Yale University with Bush in the late 1960s and served with him on a dormitory social committee.

"Even then he had clearly awesome social skills," Trudeau said. "He could also make you feel extremely uncomfortable ... He was extremely skilled at controlling people and outcomes in that way. Little bits of perfectly placed humiliation."

…. Trudeau said he penned his very first cartoon to illustrate an article in the Yale Daily News on Bush and allegations that his fraternity, DKE, had hazed incoming pledges by branding them with an iron.

The article in the campus paper prompted The New York Times to interview Bush, who was a senior that year. Trudeau recalled that Bush told the Times "it was just a coat hanger, and ... it didn’t hurt any more than a cigarette burn."

We now vaguely recall the article when it first came out, but at that point Bush’s torture obsession didn’t have the horrific longevity and toll that it has acquired by this point in 2007.

For a boy who allegedly shot BB guns at his brothers and did who knows what to small animals, Bush as recalled by Trudeau offers no small insight into what is clearly a sadistic (and as we have repeatedly said, sociopathic) individual.

Bush has continued to insist that his administration does not conduct torture by merely redefining what torture is, as distinct from how it is outlawed under International law and agreements. You can see how he accomplishes this "redefining" by his claim to The New York Times, while he was at Yale, that branding fraternity pledges was not cruel because "it didn’t hurt any more than a cigarette burn."

The Democrats have long treated the torture issue as though it were a public policy issue and not an outgrowth of a psychological deviancy on the part of Bush (along with the Cheney/Addington "we are accountable to no one" worldview).

As BuzzFlash has long argued, Bush is a model narcissistic sociopath, who is devoid of the ability to empathize. It is the characteristic of such people to have the ability to "appear" to be concerned about others, but that is just for show. The inner heart is empty. You can knock all you want, but you won’t find anyone home in the empathy department when it comes to sociopathic personalities.

The long-ago forgotten recollection of Garry Trudeau, as corroborated in the Yale Daily News and The New York Times, indicates quite clearly Bush’s mindset: inside of the "great hugger" is a "great sadist."

That may explain why Bush's latest appointment for Attorney General has been so brazenly coy in claiming that he has not made up his mind yet on whether or not water boarding is torture. (Not to mention Mukasey’s Stepford-like assertion of the doctrine of "unitary authority" for the executive branch, which is what grants the White House its ability to torture at will.)

The Bush Administration’s obsession with torture is deep-seated and personal. George’s love of it in particular is not so much for what it might do in assisting in the war on terror, as it is a perverse exercise in humiliation and the exercise of absolute power to inflict pain on other people through the use of unaccountable and an all-powerful authority.

What we have been seeing unfold before us since the rendition and Abu Ghraib stories first broke (and there were earlier indications in Afghanistan of mass killings and torture, although not as widely reported) is the elevation of a sadistic fraternity head to the highest office in the land, but his delight at "harmlessly" branding pledges has just progressed to the next level: torture, murder (remember the tortured to death cadavers at Abu Ghraib), and the "disappeared."

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