June 24, 2006

"Boobs..."

"...hardly bombers." I love Daily News headlines, but, really, what's the suggestion here? That because these guys were such idiots to have gotten caught so early in their plot that they would never have done much harm? Al Qaeda are a bunch of boobs if you look back far enough into the past. The familar videos of them training on monkeybars or spouting kooky religious theories would be hilarious if they'd never killed anyone.

IN THE COMMENTS: PatCA has this:
In 1993 when I read about the goofballs who bombed the WTC, who were so dumb they wrote the correct names and addresses on the van rental, I just laughed! Talk about dumb. I mean, really, what a bunch of idiots! We went to their apartment, arrested them right away and put them in prison. HAHAHAHAHA. Piece of cake, this jihad BS.

56 comments:

Troy said...

It would be interesting to know how many of these guys have killed themselves in Palestinian (and many other places) garages and warehouses and backyards playing Mr. Wizard with all those dangerous chemicals.

Wile E. Coyote is funny because he never touches the Road Runner.

I thought you were starting another breast discussion... alas.

Jacques Cuze said...

Perhaps you can help found the pre-crime division based on psychic emanations and bad will. Your work will provide a nice balance to the Innocence Project. The Innocent Project is so pre-911 anyway.

And hey, the Bill of Rights will be much easier to learn and implement without that pesky 5th amendment.

Troy said...

I don't think anyone said anything about pre-empting idiots. Bush didn't write conspiracy and solicitation laws. It's been a crime to aid, abet, solicit, and conspire to commit further crimes for decades and/or centuries in many cases.

Besides they took the affirmative step of seeking out and contacting what they thought was an al-Qaeda member. These guys will get minimal jail time and will hopefully give up seeking Acme explosives.

We can argue whether they should be arrested in principle, but these types of arrests have been made for decades in various areas since before the days we were born. To argue -- as is your default that this is a Bush/Hitlerian oppressive act is... why do I bother?

Ann Althouse said...

In what way were their rights violated? They'll have a chance to make their arguments that they were.

AJD said...

The suggestion here is that these people were not worthy of a press conference by the US Attorney General!

Osama bin Laden? Nah. Haven't found him after five years of looking. So wag the dog.

Let's make a national story out of a bunch of losers in Miami who think that terrorists wear uniforms. Now that's big news.

I feel so much safer today.

downtownlad said...

They'll have a chance to make their arguments that they were.

Will they? I give it a 50/50 chance that this is handled in the civilian courts.

I think they should be imprisoned. They're probably guilty of something. But if there's a chance they might be found innocent, the Bush Administration is likely to call them enemy combatants and they'll stew in prison forever without a trial.

Jacques Cuze said...

We don't have the option of waiting for plots to take the next step to be more specific operational attacks,... the group's only move toward its goal was to use a camera provided by an FBI informant to photograph the bureau's Miami office and a National Guard armory,

It all sounds like a pre-crime bust to me, or perhaps mere entrapment. YMMV.

From the article: Gonzales admitted the malevolent seven posed no threat.

"They didn't have the materials they requested," he said. "They didn't receive the weapons."

FBI Deputy Director John Pistole put it more bluntly: "In terms of the plans, it was more aspirational than operational."

Yet officials emphasized that they are intent on stopping terror plots at the idea phase - even though the Miami cell had no connection to any bona fide terror group or the capability to carry out a strike, sources said.

"We don't have the option of waiting for plots to take the next step to be more specific operational attacks," Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty said.

Besides talking about bombings, the group's only move toward its goal was to use a camera provided by an FBI informant to photograph the bureau's Miami office and a National Guard armory, the indictment said.

"[The suspects] wanted to destroy the Sears Tower, but they had no capability to do it. They never got to that point - or could have," a top counterterrorism official told the Daily News.


These guys needed some sort of intervention from the government (perhaps a stern talking to, perhaps jobs, perhaps checking in with them once a month and putting their names on a travel watch with customs and the INS), but it is not at all clear they are the big terrorism bust with the felony charges that was announced.

Apparently they also scammed the FBI out of shoes too. Why were these guys from the inner city that dressed in bathrobes so interested in good boots? I just can't figure that one out. Can you help out here Ann?

RogerA said...

I had no idea that there was some sort of "imminent threat" threshold for a terrorist act! Who knew! Had the feds arrested Timothy McVeigh before he got the ammonium nitrate would the critical commenters above be complaining?

Actually, ajd, and Quxxo, I really do feel safer today knowing that there are programs like the Treasury actions with respect to financial transactions, and FBI programs to ensare potential terrorists before they can pull the trigger.

Had this bunch of boobs advanced their (alleged) plot, why do I think ajd and Quxxo would be complaining about the administration's inability to "connect the dots?"

knoxgirl said...

They would be. They just look at whatever's been done and criticize it.

And any actual progress in the meantime they find ways to discount.

Jacques Cuze said...

Al Qaeda are a bunch of boobs if you look back far enough into the past.

Is that true? Have you really investigated their early background? Can you think of any obvious differences between Osama Bin Laden and Narseal Batiste? (Think money, think CIA training and funding and support during the Soviet/Afghanistan war.)

Yeah, they always were a bunch of cards, from their very beginning when they were actually engaged (with US support) in warfare against the Soviets, to their activities in Sudan, Bosnia, and Kenya.

Thinking from your gut again or jus hungover?

Troy said...

ajd I have two words for you: "Eric Rudolph". Atlanta Olympic and abortion clinic bomber hung out in the Appalachians for 5 or 6 years before he was finally caught.

How much more difficult to track a guy down who moves back and forth between sovereign nations (not our own at that) and also where those regions are basically "no go" zones for their respective nations' forces AND who has an ardent core of supporters who will die for him while the others are skeptical of us at best and enemies at worst?

The "can't catch Osama" meme is idiotic. Despite 24, Alias, and every other movie and TV show where you must get your ideas about government, those agencies are lucky to be right even half the time.

Ann Althouse said...

"Thinking from your gut again or jus hungover?"

Hey, you're the one slurring your words.

Jacques Cuze said...

Hey, you're the one slurring your words.

I'm not the one driving a passenger laden blog. Hic.

Elizabeth said...


I feel so much safer today.


Don't we all! Please don't forget this warm, safe feeling as the mid-term elections get nearer.

PatCA said...

In 1993 when I read about the goofballs who bombed the WTC, who were so dumb they wrote the correct names and addresses on the van rental, I just laughed! Talk about dumb. I mean, really, what a bunch of idiots! We went to their apartment, arrested them right away and put them in prison. HAHAHAHAHA. Piece of cake, this jihad BS.

Internet Ronin said...

You're right Pat! Elizabeth and Jacques and AJD are experts in these things and they say no one has anything to worry about. So we shouldn't. They'll let us all know when we need to worry. After the fact, of course. If you aren't one of those who had the misfortune to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when one of these boobs actually succeeds.

But, don't worry Pat! They'll be happy to blame Bush (or whoever) on your behalf.

Elizabeth said...

Ronin and Pat,

It's a shame you don't spend even a single braincell distinguishing between your own projections and what I had to say. That you are unbothered by this administration's use of fear as a campaign strategy is also a shame. And pointing that out in no way makes light of terrorism, nor dismisses the efforts of law enforcement and security.

Internet Ronin said...

Elizabeth, Did I project my thoughts on to you, Elizabeth? Really? Oh, gee, I am sorry. I sure didn't mean to. True, I meant to make fun of what you wrote, but I didn't think anyone would take me seriously - that they might believe that you actually thought that or that I thought you thought that! I am so sorry. I'd go to church and say penance but I'm not a believer so that's not an option. I'd cut a check to HRCF in your name as a sign of my sincere apology, but the last time I sent them money, they spent it all (and more) writing and calling, writing and calling, and writing and calling to ask me to give them more. So that's not an option, either.

It's a shame that you don't use the few braincells you have that aren't infected with the Bush Derangement Syndrome virus to lighten up a bit, Elizabeth.

PatCA said...

"That you are unbothered by this administration's use of fear as a campaign strategy is also a shame."

This arrest has nothing to do with that, Elizabeth, (as you wilfully ignore the 1993 bombing) unless you are of the mind that only a post-bombing arrest is permissible in your civil rights utopia. Do you dispute Ann's contention that an arrest in and of itself does not constitute a constitutional violation?

The "I question the timing" accusation is unworthy of you.

I haven't read a gestapo allusion yet...but it's the weekend.

Elizabeth said...

I was wondering how long it would take someone to reach into their muckbag for the Bush Derangement Syndrome. I'm not at all surprised that it was Internet Ronin, who is frequently reduced to cliches.

Pat, nothing was funny about the WTC bombing of 1993. Who's laughing at it? That's your strawman, not mine.

But we all know we can count on terrorism alerts and arrests between now and the elections. That's the strategy.

To compare these bozos, who are looking more and more to mentally disturbed, if not retarded, to the serious threats we've faced from Al Queda operatives in the country, is typical of the Bush Derangement Syndrome that plagues Bush sycophants. You're willing to let your fears be exploited for political gain. I'm not. Nothing's funny about that.

Jacques Cuze said...

Ann Althouse, Professor of Law: Al Qaeda are a bunch of boobs if you look back far enough into the past.

FatWa, Althouse Groupie: In 1993 when I read about the goofballs who bombed the WTC, who were so dumb they wrote the correct names and addresses on the van rental, I just laughed!

Fact: Al Qaeda was never a bunch of boobs, they got their start with US support during the Soviet Afghanistan war.

Fact: WTC bombing of 1993 killed six people, but FatWa, the Althouse groupie laughed.

Fact: Law Professor Ann Althouse, congratulates FatWa on his keen analysis and joyful sense of humor.

Ann Althouse said...

Jacques: You're missing the dark sarcasm pd Pat's comment. Why don't you address why bin Laden was not captured during the Clinton administration?

Internet Ronin said...

Elizabeth writes:

But we all know we can count on terrorism alerts and arrests between now and the elections. That's the strategy.

Whose strategy would that be, Elizabeth? Do you have any proof for that statement? Do you have any proof that such a strategy was followed in previous election years?

I can't recall any such series of alerts and arrests before a recent election, but I do recall repeated hysterical claims like yours that such things would happen before the 2002 elections and the 2004 elections.

michael a litscher said...

Elizabeth: That you are unbothered by this administration's use of fear as a campaign strategy is also a shame.

No, the lefties never use fear in their campaigns.

Lefties would never suggest that Bush might appoint judges that would re-establsh the 3/5's rule, or suggest that the dragging death of a black man in Texas wasn't prosecuted vigorously enough because Bush hates blacks, or that Republicans planted bombs in New Orleans levies, or that we aren't all going to die due to a whopping one degree increase in globally averaged temperature over the next one hundred years, or that Bush might take away Social Security from seniors, or that Bush was planning on implementing a draft after the 2004 election, or...

I could go on, and on, and on.

You want to see fear mongering for votes? Look left, my dear.

Internet Ronin said...

Elizabeth writes:

You're willing to let your fears be exploited for political gain. I'm not. Nothing's funny about that.


Oh really, Elizabeth? Your posts here strike me as someone who has bought the scare-mongers' line about the proposed constitutional amendment about marriage when just about everyone else capable of rational thought realizes that it is never going anywhere.

Once again, you make broad, sweeping, unsubstantiated comments about the people you are interacting with, which is why it is so much fun talking to you. You know almost nothing about me, my political beliefs, or who I am voting for in November.

Elizabeth said...

Ronin, you have to be blind to miss what's right in front of you. And are you forgetting Homeland Security's color-colded fear meter, before they retired that useless thing? You can map failed Bush policy initiatives by the spikes in terror alerts. The strategy for the GOP this election is to make voters believe only the GOP can protect them. It helps to keep a string of scary events in the news, so we'll be treated to an ongoing carnival of terror along the way. Some will no doubt be legitimate. All will be spun for the political advantage.

michael, you'll need to do better than pull out that list from the far fringes of the left.

Elizabeth said...

Ronin, you have to be blind to miss what's right in front of you. And are you forgetting Homeland Security's color-colded fear meter, before they retired that useless thing? You can map failed Bush policy initiatives by the spikes in terror alerts. The strategy for the GOP this election is to make voters believe only the GOP can protect them. It helps to keep a string of scary events in the news, so we'll be treated to an ongoing carnival of terror along the way. Some will no doubt be legitimate. All will be spun for the political advantage.

michael, you'll need to do better than pull out that list from the far fringes of the left.

Internet Ronin said...

Elizabeth - I never paid one bit of attention to those alert codes. I didn't even know they were gone. I never met a single person who thought they were remotely meaningful, except as the good source of a joke, which they often were at one time.

You can map failed Bush policy initiatives by the spikes in terror alerts.

Elizabeth, all kidding aside, something like this sentence sounds eerily like the right-wing claim that every time Clinton had a problem he lobbed a missile somewhere.

Jacques Cuze said...

Why don't you address why bin Laden was not captured during the Clinton administration?

Are you kidding me?

We made the first arrest within two weeks, by treating the terrorist act as a criminal act.

Clinton, by not avoiding his daily briefs like "Bin Laden determined to attack inside the US" caught the Millenium Bomber by shaking the trees.

What did George Bush to in response to that PDB? A CIA analyst told Suskind of flying to Crawford, Texas, during Bush's month-long vacation to brief him personally on the Aug. 6, 2001, memo titled ``Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S,'' a memo prepared when there had been increasing intelligence traffic about an impending terrorist attack. After listening, Bush dismissed the staffer, saying, ``All right. You've covered your ass, now.''

And when Clinton did bomb Al Qaeda, it was you conservatives that accused him of trying to wag the dog.

In fact, during the Bosnian war, it was you conservatives that hindered us by attacking Clinton every chance you got. What did your little impeachment drive over a blowjob do to his ability to govern?. Anything he did in terms of foreign policy after that was decried as wag the dog.

Try reading snopes instead of listening to Rush and Sean.

Turn off your TV. Stop watching and blogging about reality shows. You are a professor of law. READ!

It was the outgoing Clinton Administration that told George Bush that Al Qaeda would be their biggest problem.

Clinton ordered the capture and/or assassination of Bin Laden, and that was before Bin Laden had killed 3,000 Americans.

Why didn't Clinton capture Bin Laden? Why did George Bush let Bin Laden go at Tora Bora? Where were our troops then? Oh, yeah, diverting to Iraq.

Ann, what did the acid look like? Was it barrel shaped? How long ago did you take it? You know, I'm against drug use myself, but I'm not going to lay that on you right now. Just mellow out the best you can, okay?

And turn off your TV.

F15C said...

Ja'cuze: You brought up the pre-crime thing. Answer the question you begged and ignored: Specifically, what civil rights have been violated in the matter in question?

Also, "It all sounds like a pre-crime bust to me, or perhaps mere entrapment." and " But if there's a chance they might be found innocent, the Bush Administration is likely to call them enemy combatants and they'll stew in prison forever without a trial." are unproven masturbatory mumblings that beg the issue.

Prove what you say or at least show some evidence of why you believe what you do. These men are not enemy combatants by any definition and your statement otherwise is not even a decent strawman. These are American citizens who by their own admissions desire to kill many of their fellow citizens.

You do understand that while the group of people arrested did not have the capability at the time of arrest to attack the Sears Tower and 'kill as many devils (aka white people) as they can', they wanted and were attempting to acquire that capability?

There is nothing in the story to indicate that had they been left to their own devices that these men would not have carried out their intended goal.

It does not take a rocket scientist to kill thousands of people, just strong desire, motivation, and opportunity. And these men have clearly demonstrated more than adequate desire and motivation by their actions and behavior. Forutnately, the work done by the FBI stopped them before they had their opportunity.

Jacques Cuze said...

Dear F15C, you need to improve your reading comprehension. Frankly I find your writings just weird!

PatCA said...

Yes, Clinton did not use fear to help his party--he used denial. And what a lovely eight years it was, from the first WTC attack to the second, fatal one, when those other retards blasted us so rudely out of our fool's paradise. What a gamble! but after all it had worked so well for so long, I don't really blame him. 3000 dead people later proved that he shouldn't have taken the bet--oh, wait, that was another fluke.

So I choose fear rather than denial, to vote for people who acknowledge that even crazy people can kill us.

tjl said...

Quxxo said:

"Frankly I find your writings just weird! "

Words fail me at this point.

Jacques Cuze said...

Hey Ann, could you get some better lawyers to comment at your blog? As tjl testifies, the ones that are currently here aren't really up to snuff. (It's too easy, it's kind of an unfair debate, and though I have been patient, I am getting bored.)

Thanks!

michael a litscher said...

Elizabeth: michael, you'll need to do better than pull out that list from the far fringes of the left.

Oh yes, how wrong of me to paint the Democratic Party with the rantings of a far-left fringe leftie, such as Al Gore.

Pogo said...

Ann quotes Luc Sante, in a subsequent post, descrbing negative aspects of 60's culture:
"...its candyland expectations and obstinate denials of reality, its fatal avoidance of critical thinking..."

The description fits perfectly here with qxxo's repetitive yer President is lying you cannot win speech, and the other posts suggesting this arrest is a sham or a shame or a sham of a shame of a sham, or some such nonsense.

For the left, 9/11 changed none of its chronic candyland expectations and obstinate denials of reality. Islamofascism? Nope. GWOT? Nope. Just BushCo and the and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Republicans.

Really, I can't abide such destructive delusions any longer. I cannot stand "their living progeny" of "avid consumerism and toothless dissent", where the NYTimes sells out our methods of tracking jihadis for a market share. Where Kos and his blind followers and their "fatal avoidance of critical thinking" will, like the 60s, again lead to our "squalid death by its own hand".

F15C said...

Ja'Cuze: "Frankly I find your writings just weird!"

No my man, on this blog you have the market on weird completely cornered.

vnjagvet said...

Jaquxxo has not made a coherent legal argument on this issue.

Contrary to J's veiled innuendo, I have seen nothing in the news accounts of this arrest to suggest that any of the accused are being charged outside of the normal criminal justice process.

Further, in spite of J's suggestion, entrapment is difficult to prove under these circumstances.

Under longstanding criminal law principles, if a gang plans criminal acts and one of its members takes purposive steps to implement the plan (even if the plan is grandiose and stupid) the entire gang is subject to prosecution for conspiracy to commit those criminal acts.

If the gang contacts a government agent posing as a entity who could help the gang in its criminal endeavors, that government agent may aid and abet the gang without creating an entrapment defense.

The reason? The gang is the impetus for the criminal acts, not the government agent.

Nothing in the news accounts suggests that the government goaded these young men into either their plan or any of their acts in furtherance of their plan.

Unless further facts come forward, J, your dark suggestions are, as usual, without factual foundation.

But I am willing to hear your case.

Fire away.

Jacques Cuze said...

Jaquxxo has not made a coherent legal argument on this issue.

You may have missed this, but I am not a big business trial lawyer. Or a lawyer of any sort. Only a fool would ask me for coherent legal arguments.

I am just an everyman who thinks it is great that the government found these guys, but that suspects that seven guys in bathrobes that are practically homeless is probably not comparable to the early days of Al Qaeda, a group that was started by the son of a Saudi billionaire with US support and who's early days involved fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan.

But once again, I am not a lawyer, and if all the lawyers that visit this site think that seven guys with a bizarre haitian/christian/jewish religion that need shoes is equivalent in capability to Al Qaeda the early days, then I will gracefully bow to your superior wisdom.

Elizabeth said...

Ronin, that you didn't pay attention doesn't change the fact that the administration used the alert codes to divert attention away from political and policy problems.

Why address Clinton and bin Laden? Is Clinton in office or running now? Are those in office now accountable only in relation to how well Clinton performed in a similar situation? Bush is in office now, bin Laden coordinated 9/11. Why not address that, since it has actual relevance to the here and now?

Michael, are you seriously arguing that Gore is saying "we're all going to die" from a 1-degree temperature rise? That's an idiotic take on global warming, and on Gore's position.

Once again, the right takes a predictable path, and changes the subject to Clinton. Why not deal with the issue of how this administration cynically manipulates fear, making the implicit argument that if the Democrats win, they'll merrily pretend there is no problem with terror. Only the GOP can protect us! Run! The right seems unable to use even a shred of discernment, of casting even a mildy critical eye toward this adminstration. Talk about derangement! But hey, WHAT ABOUT CLINTON!?

vnjagvet said...

Jacqxxie boy:

My, my, my. Why so petulant after you invited legal analysis and had ridiculed the site for not providing any?

Your first several posts on this thread clearly suggest that even though you are not a lawyer, you know more about the law than lawyers and law professors. When you are called on that by those who do understand, you protest that you are not a lawyer and suggest we lawyers are picking on poor little you.

That way, you get to make uninformed comments, and when called on them, go on the attack with invective.

Cheap shots, my small minded friend.

Why not engage in more substantive comments?

Afraid you don't measure up?

Internet Ronin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jacques Cuze said...

My, my, my. Why so petulant after you invited legal analysis and had ridiculed the site for not providing any?

Your first several posts on this thread clearly suggest that even though you are not a lawyer, you know more about the law than lawyers and law professors.


Wow, so filled with straw, no wonder you are the big business trial lawyer and I am not. Nice brief counselor!

vnjagvet, I think you need to improve your reading comprehension. Perhaps you can go through my posts and explain where I made statements that suggested to you I was claiming I knew more about the law than lawyers and law professors.

My only claim is to know as much law as any high school graduate, as any US Citizen. Yep! In high school I took courses in US History and the US Constitution. What I larned back then was that you didn't need to be a big business trial lawyer to be able to comment on what you thought was right and wrong for the government to be doing. But hey! I am not a big business trial lawyer so I don't know how you guys have changed the system in 25 years. Wouldn't surprise me none if in your big business trial practices you got some law passed that said citizens couldn't remark on the law no more.

But anyway, it seems to me I was responding to Ann's question, "I love Daily News headlines, but, really, what's the suggestion here?" along with her statements that these guys were the equivalent of Al Qaeda.

In fact, she appears to be pretty ignorant of Al Qaeda's history, Clinton and Bush's history for that matter, and as Ann notes herself in her very post, I am hardly the only person that thinks the government's case here is pretty thin.

Hey for the past six months, all I have heard from all you lawyer types is that there is no underlying crime in Libby's case, and now you tell me that the act of being in a gang and taking a picture of an FBI building and talking some serious smack turns these dudes into felons. I am glad to be so informed. Thank you!

But I am sorry you don't like the invective. I know how you lawyers hate that stuff. It's so unfair and I am the only person in this thread doing that.

Some rob you with a six-gun Some with a fountain pen We know where you fall.

PatCA said...

Elizabeth,
Come on, seriously, you've lost the argument. We bring up Clinton because besides being the president for the first WTC bombing, he's the other party--you know, the party we would all be voting for were we not convulsed in Rove-induced fear, the party that has railed against every anti-terror measure voted in by the Republican congress and Senate (also placed there by fear-addled Americans), not to mention the war on terror itself. We fear them on security because of PAST PERFORMANCE and present rhetoric, not because of color coded terrorist alerts. The Reps are only slightly better, but I'll take that edge if it's all that's being offered.

Internet Ronin said...

Elizabeth - Once again, you misrepresented what I wrote (and who I am).

Your failure to provide evidence of what you say occurred is noted.

vnjagvet said...

JC;

Whatever gave you the idea that I am a "big business trial lawyer"?

At least my reading comprehension isn't any worse than yours.

If you got that notion from my blogger profile, it says "former big firm business trial lawyer".

While I worked at large law firms both at the very beginning and the very end of my law firm career, I have generally represented privately owned businesses and small entrepreneurs and professional practices.

I now practice part time because a fairly serious heart condition precludes longer hours, and my current client list is exclusively individuals and small businesses.

My business litigation practice throughout my career is and has been generally against big business defendants.

Furthermore, during the past 45 years, I have voted democrat far more than republican.

I am a former appointee of Senator Sam Nunn (D GA) to the Small Business Advisory Committee of the Senate Small Business Committee during the 70's and 80's, and advised the Democratic National Committee on small business matters from 1978-1986.

I suspect my general political views are more aligned with thos of Senator Lieberman than of Senator Frist.

I am not sure where that leaves us, but there it is.

Jacques Cuze said...

Well VV, I apologize for my assumption then, "you can take the man out of the law system but you can't get the law system out of the man."

Maybe we can both try to improve our reading skills and lessen our reliance on assumptions.

G'night.

tjl said...

Elizabeth accuses some commenters here of
"making the implicit argument that if the Democrats win, they'll merrily pretend there is no problem with terror."

Other than Joe Lieberman -- about to be ejected from the party, apparently -- no Democrat has said anything specific about what their security policy would actually be if elected. They've given us abundant criticism of the Bush Administration's security policy as conceived and executed, much of which criticism is accurate. The nation would benefit from having an alternative policy choice clearly and honestly presented to it. But as to the details of what the Democrats would do differently, one can only guess.
Let's hope that the Democrats' security policy will not be that of Michael Moore, last seen seated in a place of honor next to Jimmy Carter at the Democratic convention: "Hold your breath," Moore told his readers, "count to ten, and tell yourselves there is no terrorist threat."

Internet Ronin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Internet Ronin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Internet Ronin said...

Elizabeth: For the record, I never mentioned Bin Laden. I only mentioned Clinton in a description of the behavior of right-wing zealots during his administration. Even the most casual observer would agree that no criticism of Clinton was expressed or implied.

This whole conversation started because you mistook a light-hearted send-up of your sarcastic comment as a serious criticism and interpretation of your views.

After reading your subsequent statement,

You can map failed Bush policy initiatives by the spikes in terror alerts.

I wrote this:

Elizabeth, all kidding aside, something like this sentence sounds eerily like the right-wing claim that every time Clinton had a problem he lobbed a missile somewhere.

It was a criticism of you, Elizabeth, not Clinton. As I said, when you make wild claims such as that, you sound like those other people a decade ago.

This is not the first time I have noted you completely misunderstanding someone else's comment and ranting about something that only you found in it.

Elizabeth said...

Ronin, you're in an odd position to carp about "persistant misunderstanding." My reply addressed several different people, yourself included, and the Clinton meme had come up in posts other than your own.

Pat, it's a serious misrepresentation to say Democrats have opposed any and all methods to investigate and fight terrorism. That they do not put a rubber stamp on any and all proposals is a good thing, if we want to preserve the culture that is under attack by those who would undermine our freedoms. But by and large, Bush gets support in Congress, and when he is challenged, there are GOP members who join in those challenges, especially when the concerns are about government intrusion, balance of powers, and privacy rights.

As for Michael Moore, does anyone really want to argue that the Democrats give him anymore credence than the GOP gives Ann Coulter? If either is actually influencing policy, then both parties are in deep trouble.

Internet Ronin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
PatCA said...

My final question, Elizabeth: What exactly is the Dems' plan for national security and international order in the face of global jihad?

I ask this only to illustrate to all who are reading this thread that the opposition is content to limit their agenda to protecting us from our own government. Well and good, let's advance the theoretical understanding of liberty ever forward!

I'm not even sure that the Democrats acknowledge there is a pratical threat, notwithstanding 9/11, and that's why in the real world of politics, they will continue to lose elections until they do.

Finn Kristiansen said...

In some ways it would be nice if there were not a government agent at the center of a set of arrests, but I guess that is how these sort of stings work.

It's like this. Right now I am seated at my computer, making a comment for Ann's blog, and remotely wondering how people have the energy to debate each other back and forth on a post that will disappear into ether. And that's all I am doing. Oh, and sipping soda and wondering if I should run to the store for some groceries and burritos.

However, if a naked huge boobed woman showed up at my door with booze, and said, "Do me now, Finn!!" I might be sorely tempted. So that naked ho-licious woman might be totally able to move me off my normal pattern of behavior.

Right now I say, "Oh that's ridiculous, I would never do that with some stranger" but I can say that with some authority as I know such an event is not likely to happen. (Women I actually know never show up at my door naked).

But if such an event did occur, might I now be having dangerous sex, boozing it up (even though I don't drink), or, expressing a desire to blow up McDonalds during the middle of sex, and at Boob girls suggestion?

Elizabeth said...

Pat, I'm still trying to figure out the GOP plan, other than invade Iraq. What's the coherant, long-term strategy for dealing with Iran? North Korea? Palestine? Saudi Arabia? There isn't one, and you certainly haven't articulated any such thing. Too much of what we see day to day relies on the PR of stoking fears. The same tactics would worry me coming from a Democratic adminstration.

Any administration, GOP or Democrat, is going to rely on both domestic and international intelligence to track potential terrorist activity inside the U.S., against our bases and interests outside the U.S., and coming across our borders. I want all of that, but I want the government to follow the rules while they do it. I support defending ourselves against threats. Rightwing commenters here want to make the argument that Democrats are opposed to national security. How? By opposing first our invasion of Iraq, and now our prosecution of that war? We obviously disagree that Iraq should be the center of our national security efforts. But that doesn't mean I, or any other person over on the left, thinks national security is unimportant.