PSYCHOLOGY AND TORTURE. What is the mature balance between national security and the rights of enemy combatants? Psychologist Roy Eidelson, writing a recent Washington Post commentary, notes a recent lawsuit filed by the ACLU for three CIA detainees. Two psychologists were accused of designing and overseeing an experimental program of supposed CIA torture and abuse. The case was settled out of court.
Often drawn by patriotism, says Eidelson, these psychologists often seek to methodically break the minds and bodies of the detainees. He believes they have been were present at facilities across the globe including CIA so-called “black sites” in faraway places such as Afghanistan, Cuba, Poland, and Lithuania.
CHANGING MORES. In regard to women’s rights, Irina Carmon notes that rape of one’s spouse was not a crime until 1979. Furthermore, the Supreme Court failed to recognize sexual harassment as a violation of Federal law before 1986.
FEELING OLD? Writer Amy Nicholson comments that the highest-paid actor in the world is former wrestler Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson.
A NATIVIST BACKLASH? Washington Post critic Carlos Lozada cites a series of successful authors feeding Europe’s anti-immigrant posture. They include Michal Houellenbeq, Eric Zemmouor, and Alain Finkielkrait. They suggest an apocalyptic future in which the world is engulfed by a relentless radical Islamic tsunami.
AMERICA AFTER TRUMP. E. .J Dionne’s new book ONE NATION AFTER TRUMP argues that seemingly neutral facets of the American political system have conspired in recent years to produce an unhealthy result. He sees the electoral college as an obvious example – in the past five presidential elections, the popular vote winner lost the electoral count. Furthermore, Mr. Dionne condemns partisan gerrymandering – Democrats enjoyed a 50.5% majority but controlled only 46.2% of the seats in the House. This is due, he reasons, to a highly-skewed system favoring rural and Republican areas.