Past and future. An overview by Leonard David.
..is such a huge mistake. Josh Marshall is taken to school along the way.
Like Andy McCarthy, I’m amused by Obama defenders who defend him by saying that Bush did it, too. I thought that Obama was supposed to be the UnBush. And I’m not sure why I should find this a persuasive argument, unless the arguer is stupid enough to think that I worship George Bush. He made a lot of screwups, and I complained about them pretty much continually. The fact that I often defended him against insane criticisms doesn’t mean that I found nothing to criticize.
[Update just before 2010 Eastern Time]
Cliff May has more thoughts:
Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab has reportedly told investigators:
There are more just like me who will strike soon.
If he knows that, he may also be in possession of information that would help investigators locate these individuals before they strike. Indeed, it is likely that UFA attended suicide-bomber school with some of them in Yemen between August and September.
But because UFA is being treated as a criminal suspect to be tried in a regular American court, he has been told he has a “right to remain silent.” And his attorney, presumably, has told him to exercise that right until such time as it is possible to determine how much leniency his cooperation may be worth.
In the meantime, one of these terrorists may succeed in his mission. That will be the price we pay for treating UFA as criminal suspect rather than an unlawful combatant.
This would seem to be a case where the precautionary principle would make sense.
…Those were heady times when Guantanamo was still a gulag with its hundreds of Solzhenitsyns, not psychopaths like Khalid Sheikh Mohammeds, when we could just leave Iraq by “March 2008”, and when there would be no lobbyists, no tax cheats, no insider buy-offs and horse-trading for votes. In such a dreamy world, geniuses like Timothy Geithner don’t pocket their FICA allowances, and Tom Daschles don’t fudge on their complimentary limo services.
And then tragically Obama got elected and discovered that the real world had no relationship whatsoever to his fantasy impressions of it. In a cosmos of radical Islam, Chinese bankers, Japanese exporters, and Arab oil producers, there were no more law school profs, Rev. Wrights, or Chris Matthews and Newsweek editors to wink and nod and reassure Obama that his mellifluous but empty rhetoric allusions were at all reality-based.
So here we are. A president of the United States does not want to rush to the microphones and swear he will hunt down the Abdulmutallabs of the world and their sponsors, or that there will be no more Major Hasans (so much easier to rush to call the Cambridge police “stupidly” acting, while employing “allegedly” for the bomb-making of Abdulmutallab).
It’s sort of like much of the country suffered from Bush-Derangement Syndrome last year, and are just finally coming out of it, and their Obamanian trance. I think that it’s a good sign for the elections next fall, though.
…so I wrote a long one instead.
This really is the worst Congress in my memory. Perhaps in history.
It’s definitely change:
Abdulmutallab remains in a Detroit area prison and, after initial debriefings by the FBI, has restricted his cooperation since securing a defense attorney, according to federal officials. Authorities are holding out hope that he will change his mind and cooperate with the probe, the officials said. (Emphasis added)
Yes, hoping that he’ll talk is so much more effective than, you know, interrogating him. But hey, just because he’s an illegal combatant, in violation of the Geneva Conventions, doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have Miranda rights. Right?
[Update a couple minutes later]
More thoughts on the suicidal law-enforcement mentality:
Charging Mutallab with a crime is no cause for relief, however. Instead, the decision renews concern about how seriously the administration is taking the threat posed by al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations, and whether we are slipping back into the pre-9/11 mindset of treating terrorism as principally a law-enforcement problem. Whatever legitimate role our civilian authorities may have in eventually bringing Mutallab to justice for attempting to blow up the airplane, experience and common sense tell us they are a poor means of addressing the more immediate problem — acquiring intelligence to stop the next attack before it happens.
That’s OK. If there’s another attack, we’ll just arrest the attackers. And make sure they get a fair trial. If they survive.
[Update a couple minutes later]
Apparently the Washington Post has given up hope.
…so let’s unionize it. Glad to see the administration has its priorities straight.
[Update a while later]
…does anyone standing in a labrythine airport security line look at the TSA personnel and say, “boy, all of this would go smoother if these guys were unionized?” As one of these guys is getting to third base on you, do you look at them and think, “boy, if only they had the job protections and collective bargaining rights that made America’s automakers the efficient, well-run economic powerhouses that they are today?”
Apparently, judging by comments here, some do.
Iowahawk has an exclusive: a guest editorial by the skivvie bomber:
…the whole in-flight terror experience has gone completely downhill since the jet set golden years of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. What happened to all those pretty stewardesses and polite, well dressed infidels, screaming as the plane plummeted to the ground? Time was, a suicide mission to explode an international jumbo jet was an event full of glamor and excitement; but now it seems to be a endless series of delays, hassles, pushy jerks and third-degree testicular chemical burns. And don’t even get me started on the crappy airline food.
…So I’m like, “honey, do I look like I’m a US military veteran?”
“Do I look like I’m some sort of right wing anti-tax teabagger?”
“Do I look like anybody else on the DHS terrorism danger list?”
“Then I suggest that unless you want a nasty anti-discrimination lawsuit on your hands, you’d best give me an aisle seat. With extended legroom.”
I don’t know how he gets these things….
Probably not, but Bob Poole has some suggestions, just in case we want to.
The Arab culture is very, very sick. Which would be simply sad, if it weren’t for the fact that it generates so much violence across the world. Ultimately, this is what we are at war with, no matter how much we (and particularly the people presently with the levers of power) want to fantasize that we are not.