August 21, 2009

Tom Ridge has a book to sell and a book, to sell, needs a big, juicy, media-ready nugget...

... a chunk of steak buried in the dog food. Grrrrrrr.... mmmm.... grrrrr..... num num num....

AND: The denials are predictable:
"Under no circumstance was Tom Ridge or anyone else directed to change the threat level... It didn’t work that way, and it certainly didn’t work that way in 2004. It was always an apolitical process."
Ridge "felt pressured." They didn't "direct." Everybody could be telling the (half) truth.

53 comments:

MadisonMan said...

The question becomes: Is anyone surprised?

Flexo said...

Tom Ridge is another one of those useless squishes like John McCain, the Maine sisters, Chuck Hagel, John Warner, Arlen Spector, George Voinovich, Tommy Thompson, and all the other big tenters.

The only bad thing regarding Tom Ridge that Bush did is appointing Ridge in the first place.

TRO said...

Did anyone ever really care what Tom Ridge said? Do they now? I don't think so.

Methadras said...

Ann, just a slight correction. It's actually nom, nom, nom. Thank you.

wv = deaceted = the state of Tom Ridges book when it hits the shelves.

Jeremy said...

The truth hurts.

And I love this: TRO - "Did anyone ever really care what Tom Ridge said? Do they now? I don't think so."

Suddenly, the voice of Homeland Security from the Bush Administration is irrelevant.

Hypocrites.

Maguro said...

This is the most exciting thing he could come up with to promote his book?

Ashcroft and Rumsfelf approach Ridge before one of those meetings that Ridge never got invited to.

Ashcroft: Hey, Tom, old pal, why don't ya raise that terror-warning thingy a notch or two before the election? Whaddya say?

Ridge (indignantly): No way! I'd never play politics with the terror-warning thingy. Who do you think I am?

Rumsfeld: Um..OK. Just thought we'd ask
.

Can't see too many people running out and spending $30 on the professionally ghostwritten version of the above.

jayne_cobb said...

Well it is August so perhaps he's just wee-weed up.

elHombre said...

Is he volunteering to take a polygraph this time too?

John Stodder said...

Is the problem with Ridge's juicy, media-ready nugget that it's false, or that it's true?

Carl Dean said...

And a blog, to have traffic, needs much the same. And you provide it every day: red meat to the wacko right. It's a formula that found you a W-loving husband and tons of hits from the Obama-haters.

I'm surprised you're knocking your on approach.

TRO said...

"Suddenly, the voice of Homeland Security from the Bush Administration is irrelevant."

I thought he was irrelevant when he was Secretary of Homeland Security. Just like I think the current Secretary is irrelevant. In fact, I think the whole damn department is irrelevant and should be abolished.

The fact that I find Ridge more irrelevant than some is just a mater of degree really.

TRO said...

That should read "matter" instead of "mater" of course.

Roger J. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

Who knows. It could well be true. Anyone who trusts in the government in DC, without a loyal opposition party to keep it honest, is a Total Fool. But to work right that two party system also has a sine qua non of men and women willing to report the news that is out there, like Robert Novak did. Thank God for the internet that has not yet been censored. So Jeremy, would you feel better with Palin as our President since she is not smart enough to use constant lies as her policy? Palin would tell the truth so often that the foundations of DC would be shaken.

daubiere said...

yeah, the Bush admin was the only admin to ever use scare tactics for political advantage. please. who reads these political books other than low level media people looking for the chunk of meat? has anyone on any side of the aisle actually read one of these kinds of books?

Maguro said...

Is the problem with Ridge's juicy, media-ready nugget that it's false, or that it's true?

To me, his nugget just seems completely innocuous and boring. There was a meeting, some people outside DHS suggested raising the alert level in response to the UBL tape and Ridge decided not to based on advice from his analysts.

Afterward, a thought bubble appears over Ridge's head saying "Hmmm..I wonder if electoral politics has something to do with these suggestions" and that's it.

No evidence of wrongdoing or ill-intentions on the part of anyone else, just Ridge's suspicion that the election might be influencing Ashcroft's and Rumsfeld's recommendations.

Well, maybe there's something to his suspicions (who knows?) but its pure speculation on his part. In the end, the process worked perfectly because of Ridge's own professionalism and incorruptibility.

Roger J. said...

As Jayne Cobb astutely noted: it is August and congress is out of town catching hell from their constiuents--August is usually a slow news month. Good time for such a "bombshell."
Re the substance of Ridge's charge: I am SHOCKED.....

Dogwood said...

Is the problem with Ridge's juicy, media-ready nugget that it's false, or that it's true?

The issue is that normal people are not surprised or shocked when politicians make decisions for political reasons to advance their political agenda at the expense of their opponent' political agenda.

Zero sum game politics drives the process, thus our reluctance to see government expand even more into health care or other aspects of our lives.

In other words, we don't trust the bastards, even when they are our own bastards. Yes, we trust ours a bit more than we trust theirs, but in the end, they are all political bastards sticking their hands in our pockets and their noses in our business.

Flexo said...

Last fall, I assumed that the threat level had been raised because of the election. Of course it should be raised before a major election - we should expect to be hit and be thankful if we are not. Especially before a major national event we should not be adopting September 10 "nothing to worry about" attitudes.

To be sure, recent history in other countries shows a high increase in the number of terror attacks prior to elections -- Afghanistan just this week, Pakistan, Iraq, etc. Even Spain was hit, leading to the election of a leftist, appeasement government.

Ridge is an idiot. If he had refused to raise the threat level, he should have been fired for incompetency.

And come fall of 2010, and fall of 2012, we better raise the threat level again.

Ralph L said...

After Osama bin Laden released a threatening videotape four days before the election
Couldn't possibly respond to that, could we?

cieners - dog meat eaters - the idiots who will buy his book.

AllenS said...

Very good point, Carl Dean. Althouse, get off your on approach.

MadisonMan said...

Anyone who trusts in the government in DC, without a loyal opposition party to keep it honest, is a Total Fool.

I don't think that sentence needs the clause without a loyal opposition party to keep it honest.

Chris said...

I think you mean "nom nom nom".

Joe said...

I don't get why people are seeing a request such as this as a bad thing. As has happened elsewhere, terrorists and other bad guys like to disrupt elections. It's quite possible that the request was based on some information from NSA, CIA, FBI or some other agency. Even if not, being a little more vigilant around election time seems quite sensible to me.

(And if there was actionable intelligence at the time, this will support the theory that Ridge is an ass [as Flexo pointed out].)

Joe said...

Damn, seems I'm just parroting Flexo. Either that or he's stealing my thoughts! Where's my tin foil hat?

Revenant said...

I'm willing to believe that Cheney pressured Ridge to raise the threat level. I don't think it is likely, but hey, could have happened.

But, um... seriously, who cares? Has anyone here EVER paid attention to that stupid color code? Does anybody know what the current threat level is? Does anybody know what the current threat level means, or how it differs from the levels immediately before and after? And finally, does anybody seriously believe that even a single American ever thought "oh my goodness, the threat level has been raised from beige to chartreuse -- clearly, this is no time to be voting for Kerry"?

The funny thing about Ridge's claim is that it ignores the fact that the American public largely considers his little "security rainbow" to be one of the dumbest things to come out of the government in living memory. Like we'd CARE if he raised the threat level!

traditionalguy said...

The threat level in Central America today is hammer and sickel Red. But Alfred E Newman's in the News Media are ignoring all issues but the saving of Obama's butt.

Dave TN said...

From the article:

Mr. Ridge provides no evidence that politics motivated the discussion. Until now, he has denied politics played a role in threat levels. Asked by Eric Lichtblau of The New York Times if politics ever influenced decisions on threat warnings, he volunteered to take a lie-detector test. “Wire me up,” Mr. Ridge said, according to Mr. Lichtblau’s book, “Bush’s Law.” “Not a chance. Politics played no part.”

Misrembering now, or misrembering then?

LonewackoDotCom said...

Ridge said something similar way back in December, 2005.

P.S. There are four ways to search through my thousands of entries in the right sidebar if anyone wants to look into what other politicians have said or find out what the MSM won't tell you about the groups I cover.

rcocean said...

I think it was courageous of Tom Ridge to refuse to play politics, refuse to raise the level and then resign in protest.

Oh, wait that never happened.

Ridge, like Whitman, is a "moderate" motivated mostly by personal ambition.

John Stodder said...

Has anyone here EVER paid attention to that stupid color code? Does anybody know what the current threat level is? Does anybody know what the current threat level means, or how it differs from the levels immediately before and after?

I'm sure this weekend we're going to hear a lot about it, the fine calibrations that professionals in homeland security make to determine the extent of our threats and our preparedness for such threats, a process that has been carefully insulated from politics for decades until those horrible Bushies contaminated it with politics. I'm sure Obama will pledge to never ever allow the sacred threat level process to be violated again, ever; and when he does manipulate it in the future, his explanation will be accepted immediately as wise and presidential.

Jeremy said...

traditionalguy said..."Who knows. It could well be true."

Really?

Do the local wing nuts EVER get off the hypocritical delusion train?

Ridge is a highly respected Republican, probably would have helped McCain become President if selected as the V.P. choice...and now, as soon as he says something that defiles the image of Bush & Cheney...he's demonized as being irrelevant and a liar.

Do you idiots ever actually think of how ridiculous you sound before posting this drivel?

It doesn't appear so.

Jeremy said...

I have to admit, it is a relief to hear the local wing nuts whining and bitching about something other than everything Obama.

Bart DePalma said...

Terrorist activity generally surges during our election periods in an attempt to influence out voters.

Indeed, violence and our casualties in Iraq nearly doubled in November 2004. You also saw this around the 2006 elections.

The WH probably did speak to Ridge about raising the threat level if he was not doing it himself. The item missing from this leak to market the Ridge book was any allegations that the threat level was not in fact higher around the 2004 election.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Jeremy said...
I have to admit, it is a relief to hear the local wing nuts whining and bitching about something other than everything Obama.


Jeremy, you could get even greater relief by finding a blog where there are no local wing nuts whining and bitching.

You must be like those people who smack themselves in the head with a hammer b/c it feels so good when they stop.

Jeremy said...

Laura - No, I actually find it rather entertaining to stop by and see just how out of touch the local wing nuts really are.

The bitching and whining one finds here every day exemplifies why the GOP has become the party of delusional complainers, with a fat radio entertainer serving as their leader.

I suggest you do what I've asked others to do on many occasions: If you don't like what I post, ignore it and continue to suck on the regulars.

95% of the comments here are posted by people who merely parrot the comments and opinions of those with whom they ALWAYS agree...while disagreeing with and attacking anyone who holds an opinion that is contrary to what they already believe to be so, or at least wish to be so.

If people like me didn't stop by you might as well just cut and paste the opening few statements and save yourself plenty of time to bitch and whine elsewhere.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Jeremy, I see lots of disagreement here - honest crossways discussions that don't consist of people like you characterizing other people's expressions of opinion as bitching and whining, and making vulgar suggestions.

I've had pretty straightforward disagreements here with the "regulars" many times. You wouldn't know because you can't recognize such.

You're here because you can't cut it with people you agree with, right? You can't carry on an honest conversation. Don't know how to act if you can't be vulgar and offensive. The only thing you know how to do is be unpleasant. Otherwise you'd spend your time at a blog you find more congenial and less "entertaining".

Jeremy said...

Laura(southernxyl) said..."Jeremy, I see lots of disagreement here..."

Really?

Amoung the "regulars" who are here every day?

Show me.

traditionalguy said...

Jeremy...We have seem to have a failure to communicate. I see no reason to doubt Tom Ridge's version of events, but I was not there. Were you? The most honest statement we ever make in our opinion wars is a simple, "I do not know". After all, this guy is a Pennsylvania politician and that proves he is truthful, right.

TRO said...

"95% of the comments here are posted by people who merely parrot the comments and opinions of those with whom they ALWAYS agree...while disagreeing with and attacking anyone who holds an opinion that is contrary to what they already believe to be so, or at least wish to be so."

Try as I might to believe you are sane, Jeremy, it gets harder every time you post.

First of all I don't agree with the good Professor on many issues and especially so when she was leaning towards and ultimately supported Obama. I just had the good taste not to berate and insult her about it because it is her blog after all and being a conservative I was taught to be civil and polite. I only wish liberal parents taught their children that as well.

Secondly, and I know it might come as a surprise to you, but most of us HOLD these beliefs already, and it just so happens that what we believe coincides with what she believes on certain things. We aren't parroting her (or anyone else), although I am sure it makes you feel better believing that we don't have minds of our own and all you have to do it take out the "fat radio entertainer" that is leading us to make us agree with you.

As to attacking anyone who does not believe as we do, well, if you are going to challenge our opinions and beliefs then you are going to have to be called on it. I know you and other liberals, including Barry, no especially Barry, are not used to that and it annoys you to death to have to actually defend your statements, but that is just the way it is in America. At least for now.

Jeremy said...

Laura, I could care less what you think you know about me.

You're just another wing nut who comes to this site to suck up to those who agree with everything you already believe.

As for you thoroughly inane comment: "You're here because you can't cut it with people you agree with, right?"

I don't even know what that's supposed to mean.

Why would anyone not be able to "cut it" with those with whom they agree?\

Do they disagree about agreeing?

You sound like a dunce.

TRO said...

"Try as I might to believe you are sane, Jeremy, it gets harder every time you post."

Oh and before you accuse me of being uncivil and impolite by saying this, believe me this was me being civil and polite considering some of the things you post.

Jeremy said...

TRO - Bullshit.

Just read through the comments here today and provide examples of all the disagreements among the local wing nuts.

For that matter, pick damn near every thread you want.

All anyone has to do is post a negative and the race is on.

Today, everybody is on the "we all always hated Tom Ridge" bandwagon.

Jeremy said...

TRO - I post the same things about others as they post about me.

This holier than thou routine is a crock.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Jeremy, here. I start at about 7:08.

"Jeremy said...
TRO - I post the same things about others as they post about me."

No. About a thousand times worse.

Jeremy said...

Laura(southernxyl) said..."Jeremy, here. I start at about 7:08."

Sorry, I have no idea what you're referring to.

This is a thread in which I did not contribute.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Jeremy, you accused me of always agreeing with the regulars, although you used a disgusting vulgarity to express this. I was demonstrating that this was not the case.

But it wasn't about you, so it wasn't relevant. Right?

"As for you thoroughly inane comment: "You're here because you can't cut it with people you agree with, right?"

I don't even know what that's supposed to mean.

Why would anyone not be able to "cut it" with those with whom they agree?\

Do they disagree about agreeing?

You sound like a dunce."

You can't have a pleasant conversation, evidently. So you hang out here, where you can be ugly, rather than with people with whom you agree. Get it now?

Flexo said...

McCain would have won if Ridge had been on the ticket??

HA!

The fact is 70 percent of the vote that the McCain-Palin ticket got was a vote for Sarah Palin, not a vote for McCain.

Without her and with a squish like Ridge, McCain would have ended up with about 20 percent of the vote since conservatives would have stayed home in droves.

Eli Blake said...

If Tom Ridge was 'irrelevant,' it's funny that the national Republican party was courting him to run for Specter's Senate seat after Specter switched parties.

And that was what.... about twelve weeks ago?

Eli Blake said...

McCain wasn't going to win, regardless of who was on the ticket.

After the economic crisis that followed the collapse of Lehman Brothers brought the failure of conservative economics into stark relief, it was a given that people were going to elect a Democrat.

And you know what? The elevator shaft we were on straight down to hell has slowed since the stimulus money has been entering the economy and will probably enter positive territory sometime in the next couple of months, and don't look now, but the stock market which closed at 7949.09 on January 20 (inauguration day) and closed today at 9505.96.

Remember-- not a single Republican in the house voted for the stimulus bill.

Eli Blake said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Revenant said...

If Tom Ridge was 'irrelevant,' it's funny that the national Republican party was courting him to run for Specter's Senate seat after Specter switched parties.

There were two people who called Ridge "irrelevant". One was TRO, who said he considered the DHS irrelevant. The other was Jeremy, the left-wing troll. Just an observation.

Revenant said...

The elevator shaft we were on straight down to hell has slowed since the stimulus money has been entering the economy and will probably enter positive territory sometime in the next couple of months

In France and Germany, which had no stimulus packages, the recession is already over.

Here in the United States it is continuing and shows no signs of ending. Obama anve the Democrats have managed to produce the largest deficits in human history, though. So that's one accomplishment. :)