His comments about Bush and Cheney are hard to fathom. No one knows if they were social justice warriors, or just plumb stupid, evil, or exactly what their intentions were. I have heard people who despised Bush and Cheney describe neocons as idealists (usually a term of adulation), and if you had kept up with New American Century's website, it was no secret that the neocons certainly aspired to the ideal of bringing the Mideast into the 21st century, kicking and screaming if necessary. Their doctrine was an idealism, and while New American Century was described as a conservative intellectual think tank, sometimes even by detractors, their ignorance of human nature is mind blowing considering they were afforded the label of intellectual at all. I suspect "intellectual" was more a label they created for themselves, and the media, just ran with it. For so called intellectuals, they managed to plumb the depths of stupidity, and made it to national policy.
So when Harris so graciously says, "Bush and Cheney had the best of intentions, I would agree that it is quite possible. I wouldn't hang the label of evil on either of them right away, because I don't know what their actual thought processes involved. But evil intentions should not be ignored. Harris gives them the benefit of that doubt.
The reason I recoil from Harris' statement is that, while he gives them the benefit of the doubt and describes it as "best intentions," it raises serious questions about his qualifications as a skeptic. He has no evidence to support the "best intentions" claim at all. And I remember him making that statement without even the adjective of "probably" included. He was declaring a statement of fact without anything to back it up. This makes me suspicious about how much his skepticism is compromised by lack of reason when he is affected at a deeper emotional level.
My description of Harris would be a guy who makes sense, but tends to be a little sloppy in how he arrives at his conclusions.