The 2009 convention of the American Psychological Association (APA) opened in Toronto on August 7, and runs through today. Behind all the busy poster events, interest group parties, speeches and academic get-togethers, the fine wheels of bureaucratic resistance are grinding slowly and inexorably.
Anyone who has ever seen their dream killed by administrative indifference and authoritarian obstructionism will sympathize with the betrayal felt by the leaders of a referendum drive inside the APA to condemn psychologist participation in prison sites that are in violation of international law, say, by torturing their prisoners, or holding them in indefinite detention.
The referendum passed last summer by nearly 60% of voting members. Subsequently, APA revved up their bureaucratic resolution-killing machinery. A description of their bad faith maneuvers follows, along with coverage of breaking news, wherein the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture calls on APA to honor the referendum and tell the U.S. government it must pull all psychologists out of Guantanamo and other sites in violation of human rights.