Hit & Run

Jacob Sullum on Torture As an Absolute Wrong



In an interview on Sunday, NBC's Chuck Todd asked former Vice President Dick Cheney if he was "OK" with the fact that a quarter of the suspected terrorists held in secret CIA prisons during the Bush administration "turned out to be innocent." Todd noted that one of those mistakenly detained men died of hypothermia after being doused with water and left chained to a concrete wall, naked from the waist down, in a cell as cold as a meat locker.

Cheney replied that the end—to "get the guys who did 9/11" and "avoid another attack against the United States"—justified the means. "I have no problem as long as we achieve our objective," he said. Jacob Sullum considers a a bracing alternative to Cheney's creepy consequentialism.