Monday, December 28, 2009

The Underwear Bomber, Hero of Islam

It's not about gotcha. Too bad, actually, since we really should be trying to gettem. But the gotcha I'm talking about is the bureaucrats who are entrusted with protecting the airways, etc. The bureaucrat in charge of borders, J Napolitano, first said the system had worked, and is now inevitably backtracking. The incompetence of the statement slash lie was just too evident. She helpfully clarified that the working system to which she referred was that charged with cleanup, you know, after the bombs go off. Yes. Helpful.

The system let a man with a bomb in his undies onto an America-bound airplane. Without a passport, or luggage. Paying in cash. On a terrorist watch list. Whose father had denounced him. And the first gov response was to forbid passengers to use blankets or read a book for the last hour of a flight.


But it's not about gotcha. This underwear redux of the shoe bomber ploy -- thanks to whom we are forbidden in-flight lip balm -- is a clear, an absolute failure of the system. Were it not for the fast and violent action of a Dutch film maker, flight whatever would have been a last minute bit of tinsel decorating Detroit's high-rise skyline. Fireworks would be a non-traditional manner of celebrating Xmas. Perhaps it's how Moslems mark the day?

So yes, please, let the heads of incompetent pols roll. Not the point, though. The point is that it should not have happened. Turns out that airport security is all about perception. Nothing effective is actually intended. I am not reassured, by their reassurances. I just can't help but pay attention to the man behind the curtain. The point is, can we have something effective, please?

Our Nigerian well-to-do disaffected youth son of privilege islamist underwear bomber boy was on a British no-fly list. But not on ours. The several hundred not-dead passengers have blind chance to thank for their on-going post-Christmas heartbeats. They do not have the reams of airport security regulations to thank, nor the armies of rank and file employees or their bureaucrat overlords. A man who should never have been allowed to fly, flew. I can computer-search a book and know how many commas it has. The bureaucrats can't search a list of names. Seems inconsistent.

There passed across Mr. Bush's desk a warning about plans re Nine Eleven. Why, that's sort of like the underwear bomber, whose methodology we have had prior experience with. See? Both administrations are incompetent. Bush, who lied and people died, and who planned Nine Eleven, or allowed it, and, uh, also Haliburton, and he's evil ... well, I've forgotten my point. But Nine Eleven will have been a new and unheard of and entirely theoretical thing under the sun, in that long-ago Summer of the Shark. Whereas, lip balm.

There are obvious, active steps that should be but have not been taken. Youngish moslem men should be given extra scrutiny. Too furkin bad. It's shame that a few bad apples have to ruin it for the good ones. But every babysitter and junior high gym coach understands the thinking. The terrorist watch lists of, say, Great Britain should be merged with our own. Sort of a Neighborhood Watch thing. Sort of a hey, that guy talks a lot about molesting children and watches kiddie porn and hangs out at parks, so, watch out for him thing. It could be the government bureaucracy equivalent of word-of-mouth. You know, competence.

I don't even care if the hack pols don't lose their fatcat positions of privilege and power. Let them keep them, unpunished. Give them a medal, and a pension. And a monument, and a bridge. The pool of competent people is shallow. There just aren't enough to fill all the vital jobs. Given. But the incompetents now in charge? -- can they at least steal a good idea and pretend they thought of it? Because the past 8, no, 9, no, 9 minus one, which is 8, but not this last year, which has been so competent ... um, those 8 years of past Bush incompetence need to not be used as an excuse, not no more, no no, at all. Because they've had a year, count em, twelve almost months, the Obama apparatchiks, to go onto Wikipedia and read about Richard Reed, nee Abdul Raheem aka Tariq Raja, islamist terrorist would-be suicide shoe bomber and anti-lip balm activist, to figure out a way to not let insane islamists who red-flag themselves onto USAward jetplanes.

Man I just love to blame. But I'd be willing to give up this virtually sensual pleasure, for the cold intellectualism of competence. See how mature I am? Maybe it will spread, like a fundamentalist ideology among disaffected richboy Moslems. As for our messiah Obama, he campaigned on the platform of having a good campaign. By that logic, we should have elected the guy who ran his campaign. Or is that too intellectual.


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