Ignoring The Torture

Ambers finds an unsettling new study:

[N]ew research from psychologists and criminologists suggests that jurors tend not to discount evidence obtained from rough interrogations even though there's plenty of evidence to suggest that those claims aren't reliable. Writing in Psychology, Crime & Law, 2009, the authors conclude that jurors' expert bias -- their penchant to view expert testimony as more reliable -- overrides their perceptions and evaluations of the situation under which an interrogation was conducted. Indeed, even when given hints that confessions are false, jurors tend to put some weight in them.  This finding, which replicates others in the field, has some important implications for any federal trials of terrorist suspects. Jurors tend to put themselves in the shoes of people under duress and project upon them their own principles, such as -- if they were innocent, they'd never give in to torture.

One should also remember the role Cheney and Bush have played in legitimizing torture - in America and the rest of the world. Once a moral authority like the United States president endorses this evil, uses it, celebrates it, and threatens to use it again, the influence is wide and deep.