Opposite Day: Torture is Not That Bad


Vikram Bath

Vikram Bath is the pseudonym of a former business school professor living in the United States with his wife, daughter, and dog. (Dog pictured.) His current interests include amateur philosophy of science, business, and economics. Tweet at him at @vikrambath1.

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6 Responses

  1. Avatar Kimmi says:

    The dead sleep easy. If there’s one crime that we treat significantly more harshly than it deserves, it’s murder.Report

  2. Avatar Road Scholar says:

    O.D. is too easy. Just write a post reflecting the actual positions and arguments from Fox and, easy peasy, you’re done. A nearly perfect inversion of anything resembling thoughtful analysis or sound moral reasoning.Report

  3. Avatar Don Zeko says:

    Wouldn’t a more accurate title to this post be “Torture is not that unpopular?”Report

  4. Avatar Bob S says:

    “Explain how the world is better off with an insane murderer sitting in prison rather than dead.”

    Life is safer when the authorities have a mindset that it isn’t OK to use deadly force against citizens. Except, of course, in extremis.Report

  5. For an opposite day post, this post is awesome and well-written. So, as I criticize the argument, I fully realize that it’s opposite day and that the argument runs against Vikram’s views.

    I’d like to point out that the argument runs by deflection. It’s not quite the utilitarian argument that Opposite-Vikram says it is. The Opposite-OP doesn’t really do much to state what use torture serves, although it goes there a little way by suggesting, more by implication than anything, that we wouldn’t question the theory behind punishing criminals with jail time or (sometimes and for some of us) with the death penalty.

    Rather, as @don-zeko pointed out above, the Opposite-OP is mostly an argument for why most/many/some people support, or at least tolerate and accept, punishments that amount to what we’d call torture.Report

  6. Avatar ScarletNumbers says:

    That’s how a show about a guy who abducts, restrains, and then kills other killers can win four straight primetime Emmys.

    This doesn’t detract from your point, but they were nominated 4 straight times without winning once.

    They lost to Mad Men each time.Report