First, let me say I am a huge King fan. I have read everything he has published, most if it more than once. The man is a genius, and Joyland was as good as the rest. I listened to the Audiobook, and thought the narrator was the perfect voice for the character. The comment about Cheney bothered me though.
As a long time Soldier who has visited many unpleasant places in the course of serving my country, I just wanted to add a little different perspective on the water-boarding comment. I don't know that I will change anyone's way of thinking and that is not my intent. I just want to maybe provide a different perspective.
Imagine, if you will, that an evil man has kidnapped your wife, child, or similar family member. You know they will be killed in the next 48 hours and you have in your custody a man who could tell you where they are located so that you could save them. He is not willing to disclose this information to you because he wants your loved ones to die. Now ask yourself what you would be willing to do to persuade him to tell you. Better yet, ask yourself what you wouldn't be willing to do.
I have served with (and lost) some amazing men and women who are willing to put their lives on the line to defend our freedoms and rights as Americans. They are my family. I have seen the horrors of war and terrorism first hand, not just the news clips on TV that tend to be off-base anyway. I personally know of actionable intelligence gained through interrogation (not necessarily enhanced since this was very rarely used) has led to the removal of IEDs or re-routing of convoys to avoid ambush. This saved the lives of our brave young Americans serving in harm's way far from home fighting for the freedom of a somewhat uninterested American public. We all know the name of the new royal baby, but who can name the last Soldier killed in Afghanistan?
Don't mean to get on a soapbox, just want folks to think about these things from a more personal level. What would you be willing to do to save the life of someone you loved?