Boy, times have really changed

Further to my last but one post, I've just read this on the Guardian news website:

A group of lawyers in the Bush administration argued in a paper last year that the president has supreme authority over the questioning of terrorist suspects, and can legally order interrogators to torture or commit other crimes against them. ... "In order to respect the President's inherent constitutional authority to manage a military campaign, ... (the prohibition against torture) must be construed as inapplicable to interrogations undertaken pursuant to his Commander-in-Chief authority", the paper says. Another, termed necessity, is that hurting or even killing one person to save two lives is justified. The third concept, self-defense, says the harsh interrogation of a prisoner believed to have information on an imminent terrorist attack is the same as shooting someone pointing a gun at you.

The full article is here. The original story is from the Wall Street Journal (subscription required), although the story has been widely reported elsewhere as well.

I'm genuinely lost for words. What are they thinking of?