Thursday, April 16, 2009

Baleful quotes of the day

Via Andrew Sullivan

"You would like to place Zubaydah in a cramped confinement box with an insect. You have informed us that he appears to have a fear of insects. In particular, you would like to tell Zubaydah that you intend to place a stinging insect into the box with him," - Jay Bybee, judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

"‘The worst thing in the world,’ said O’Brien, ‘varies from individual to individual. It may be burial alive, or death by fire, or by drowning, or by impalement, or fifty other deaths. There are cases where it is some quite trivial thing, not even fatal’" - George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty Four.

1 comment:

malcontent said...

Regarding the "insect, such as a catapillar" part of Bybee's memo:

a) is the "such as" part limiting the choice of insect at all in legalese?

b) can insect be construed as a collective noun?

Given the treatment of other legal documents by this administration, I'd have to say, "of course", but I say it with disgust where Bybee would say it with a fiendish grin.