Saturday, January 30, 2010

When did the U.S. become a nation of cowards?

I see New York mayor Michael Bloomberg is the latest politician to leap on to the sniveling cowards bandwagon.  He was on Good Morning America first thing yesterday whining about how New York's finest would be utterly incapable of providing security for the upcoming trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his co-conspirators. 

I've said it before.  I don't get it.  Okay, Al Qaeda got lucky back in 2001.  They succeeded in turning airliners into missiles, with results that far exceeded their expectations.  Since then, though, it's been pretty much a comedy of errors when it comes to attacks on the U.S.  Richard Reed and his bizarre attempt to blow up an airplane with his shoes?  And the more recent diaper bomber?  Let's face it:  Al Qaeda is coming across as having more in common with Larry, Curly, and Moe than with any of the fictional terrorists we see on "24."  Granted, there was that mass shooting at Fort Hood, but that one really sounds far more like something that's traditionally American  (the unhappy employee who displays symptom after symptom of having mental problems or being under a lot of stress while the bosses do their damnedest to ignore him, until one day he goes postal*) than any act of planned terrorism, despite the best efforts of the media and the right wing to paint it that way. 

The jihadists have also been consistently low tech, going back to the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993 when they packed a Ryder truck with fertilizer and diesel fuel.  They have to be.  Al Qaeda and its various offshoots and sympathizers aren't exactly rolling in cash.  They used to get money funneled through various charities functioning as fronts.  That isn't happening any more.  They used to have sympathizers in various governments around the Muslim world.  That's been steadily drying up, too.  Both politicians and rich people tend to be pragmatic -- they don't back losers, and they see Al Qaeda and the jihadists in general as losing.  And, despite all the hyperbole about what a horrible, frightening threat Al Qeada is, they're losers.  If they weren't losers, they wouldn't be using suicide bombers.  Suicide bombers are the weapon of last resort, the weapon you use when you don't have the resources (financial or technological) to be sure of striking a blow in any other way.

So why are so many people in positions of power in this country so frightened by this handful of pathetic losers?  New York City always has been and always will be a target for various acts of mayhem -- why empower Al Qaeda by treating them as though they're something special instead of the low-life incompetents they really are? 

One of the answers is pretty clear, of course.  It's good politics.  Keep the sheeple nervous about a close-to-nonexistent threat and they're not likely to notice the numerous other ways government is busy screwing us.  It functioned very well as a distraction technique for close to 8 years under the Bush administration, but showed signs of being discarded under Obama.  What I don't understand is why Bloomberg felt compelled to join the parade -- he just bought himself another term as mayor in November 2009 so is relatively impervious to the whims of the electorate at the moment.  It's a mystery. . .     

[*Sorry, Val.]


  1. My best guess is that they'll keep trying things until they do some good damage again. Even low tech is effective if you don't see it coming.

    But I don't lose any sleep over it, they are much more interested in hitting other areas above messing with us out here in the sticks.

    Atlanta is a thousand times more likely target than here.

  2. i agree...what happened to the 'bring it on' attitude we're known for..

  3. i agree...what happened to the 'bring it on' attitude we're known for..

    Evolution I guess. Or the lack of it.

  4. The guy who said "Bring it on" was all hat and no cattle!!! Wannabe make-believe cowboy like his hero St. Ronnie.

  5. Amen. Once again read, "Milksop Nation" which won the Shell/Economist prize for writing in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks. It's amazing how all the 'bring it on' guys seem to be unwilling to bring it on themselves. Draft dodger John Wayne vs bomber pilot Jimmy Stewart is a prime example of that sort of mindset.

  6. I agree. I don't understand why Bloomberg caved. I was proud that he stood up in support of trying them in Manhattan; sorry that he seems to have changed his attitude. Apparently the businesses and residents in the area have all been up in arms about it saying it will be disruptive, etc. Sadly many Americans are either cowardly or don't want to be bothered. As a society, we tend to be very "me" centered.

    I agree, Al Qaeda is low tech and I've been saying all along that 9/11 probably exceeded beyond their wildest dreams.


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