James Comey, President Obama's choice to head the FBI, has several difficult problems facing him during his Senate confirmation hearing.
His paper trail showed him approving torture while working for the Bush Administration. Yet, times have changed and he has to sound at least tacitly disapproving of torturing prisoners. Comey settled on the odd philosophical construct that waterboarding was awful and illegal but still lawful and necessary. There is little that someone with so flexible a mind can't wrap his brain around.
Comey believes that force feeding prisoners holding hunger strikes to protest inhuman conditions is the humane thing to do. He believes that people would accept domestic spying and the secret FISA court if only people were familiar with it; that people opposing it are simply showing their ignorance; and, of course, people cannot be allowed to know about domestic spying and the secret FISA court because of national security. He wonders whatever happened to the concept of "ignorance is bliss."
Obama has supported Comey for a Supreme Court slot as well as the FBI post. This is a surprise given that Comey is a rightwing Republican who share nothing with either the President nor anyone else in the White House. Comey also has a very weak resume. This all begs the question, what kind of blackmail information is Comey using to pressure President Obama to appoint him to high office?