Pat Robertson proposes to assassinate Hugo Chavez.
Pat Robertson has an interesting idea about how to handle public figures he disapproves of: Robertson proposes murdering Hugo Chavez, and he somehow seems to think the Monroe Doctrine means that would be OK.
Of course, turnabout is fair play. If Robertson is trying to arrange to have Chavez rubbed out, maybe Chavez ought to move first. Better to be tried by twelve than carried by six, and all that.
I strongly disapprove of political murder, but the day Chavez and Robertson both die will be a pretty good day for the cause of civilization.
Footnote Has someone mentioned to Robertson that “Thou shalt not kill” is one of the Ten Commandments? Even under the more literal translation “Thou shalt not slaughter” or “Thou shalt not murder,” which would allow for killing in self-defense and in warfare, political assassination would seem to be clearly over the line.
Author: Mark Kleiman
Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out.
Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken)
When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist
Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993)
Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989)
View all posts by Mark Kleiman