I don’t understand why DARPA hasn’t solved this problem. A lie detector is a primitive device generally used with a person who is not actually under arrest. For someone in custody, we should be able to establish baseline neurological responses for all sorts of information like “bomb” or “anthrax” or “chemicals” or “Afghanistan” or “Ritz Carlton Hotel” or “airport.” These baseline responses could be recorded in a database and used to guide interrogation in real time. This is not cutting edge technology.
But what if my goal is to satisfy the blood lust of my constituents?
If that’s your goal, doing torture in secret and fighting to keep records of it secret are two bad ways to accomplish your goal.
Keeping the secret really badly walks the line between letting everyone know you are torturing and having someone stop you. Do it well and the next president won’t even prosecute any of the minions.
To the extent it was an open secret, no one could stop the US, anyway. And to the extent it’s no longer a secret, they should want full disclosure.
And hey, Obama hasn’t prosecuted any over the financial crisis, either, but I don’t think it’s because our elected representatives were indulging their constituents’ desire for financial shenanigans (though possibly they were, to the extent those constituents were able to buy McMansions with no proof of income).
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