Agenda science

CBS News carries an AP story – CIA Torture Just Bad Science, Report Says that appears to be a part of the ‘Bush Torturer’ agenda.

“Solid scientific evidence on how repeated and extreme stress and pain affect memory and executive functions (such as planning or forming intentions) suggests these techniques are unlikely to do anything other than the opposite of that intended by coercive or enhanced interrogation,” according to the paper published Monday in the scientific journal, “Trends in Cognitive Science: Science and Society.”

And, of course, it is implied that the CIA interrogations invoked “extreme stress and pain”, i.e. torture, and everyone knows that torture doesn’t provide accurate or reliable confessions. So this ‘scientific report’ is all about maintaining that agenda and trying to pin horrific things on the previous administration. It suffers as a result.

There are several problems with this report. One is the very clear fact from the CIA data that the interrogations did indeed provide useful information that was proven by its use in foiling other terrorist plans and in finding other terrorists. That particular finding contradicts the AP report and raises the bar on any such ‘scientific findings’ that purport to claim otherwise. Good science does not try to pretend that actual, real world, experience and findings are not real.

A critical reader can find other flaws and problems with the AP agenda science. It has theory and speculation but no data. It does not have the attention to parameters such as exercised by the CIA. It has no referent for comparison. If you take this story as-is, you can logically conclude that any stress in your own life will cause brain damage. Does such damage cause you impairment?

Comments are closed.