We seem to be working with some kind of narrow tacit consensus which says that some torture, like waterboarding, is de facto acceptable in the name of safeguarding our democratic societies. This judgement call ends up being an aesthetic one (rather than a moral question) because it involves postulating a national sensibility. The film V for Vendetta appealed to broader feelings of unease and made out that simply reawakening the voice of our collective conscience would go a long way. Hum. Shall we acknowledge that some torture is a part of our culture and so have more transparent oversight, or is the whole point of state apparatuses that they afford the rest of us the luxury of pretending it's not happening? Perhaps play a little game called "just the tip". Just for a second, just to see how it feels.