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kpete

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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 43,842

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When the Next Terrorist Attack Comes, Will We Be Capable of Keeping Our Heads?

When the Next Terrorist Attack Comes, Will We Be Capable of Keeping Our Heads?

PAUL WALDMAN SEPTEMBER 29, 2014

As we start a new war, it's worth considering the question now.


Imagine it’s six months from now. A 19-year-old man—whom we’ll later learn was in communication with members of ISIL in the Middle East—walks on to the Mall in Washington on a weekend afternoon. Groups of tourists are walking about from one monument to another. He takes his backpack off his shoulders, reaches in, and removes the semiautomatic rifle he bought a month before at a gun show in Virginia, where he didn’t have to submit to a background check (though it wouldn’t have mattered, because his record is clean). He opens fire on the crowd, and before U.S. Park Police are able to reach him and put him down, he has killed six people and wounded eleven others. In his pocket is a note announcing his devotion ISIL, and that he is striking at the United States in retaliation for its illegal war on the true Muslims building a caliphate in Syria and Iraq….

Most of us appreciate, at least intellectually, that our chance of dying in a terrorist attack is approximately zero, and even if it increases, that increase would mean it has gone from approximately zero all the way up to pretty much zero. But that’s not how we act and react. So let’s go back to that attack, and consider what would happen in response. It would be the biggest news story of the year, every report emphasizing that it happened “just steps from the White House and the Capitol building.” The news media would amp up the fear to levels we haven’t seen in the last decade, encouraging everyone to look for sleeper cells lurking down at the Piggly Wiggly. Republicans would of course unite behind President Obama in our time of mourning—kidding! They’d go on TV to denounce him for being so weak that the evildoers struck us in our very heart, and proclaim not only that the blood of the victims is on the hands of every Democrat, but that more attacks are coming and we’re more vulnerable than we’ve ever been. Dick Cheney would emerge snarling from his subterranean lair to warn us that this is only the beginning and we really need to start bombing at least five or six more countries. Senator Lindsey Graham, who has already said about ISIL that “this president needs to rise to the occasion before we all get killed back here at home,” might just tear off his shirt and scream, “We’re all gonna die! We’re all gonna die!” right on Fox News Sunday.

And the public would follow right along. In a recent CNN poll, 41 percent said they were very or somewhat worried that they or a member of their family would be a victim of terrorism—which, to repeat, is about as likely as they or a member of their family getting hit by a falling piano. This number hasn’t changed much in years (five years ago it was 36 percent), all accumulated evidence to the contrary. But one successful attack is all it would take to push that number comfortably past a majority. In the last year, the number of people telling the Pew Research Center that government anti-terror policies have not gone far enough to protect us has increased from 39 percent to 50 percent (among Republicans it’s gone from 41 percent to 64 percent), despite the fact that the only terrorist attacks in that time came from a crazed man who wanted to kill TSA agents and a couple of right-wing extremists in Nevada.

http://prospect.org/article/when-next-terrorist-attack-comes-will-we-be-capable-keeping-our-heads

Uncanny...Krgthulu - He has always been with us...

Joe Gagnon, traveling in Asia Minor, sends me a picture from a museum:



I know I’m an old-time Keynesian, but maybe even older-time than I knew …
http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/09/29/mr-krugman-and-the-classics-trivial-and-self-indulgent/?_php=true&_type=blogs&module=BlogPost-Title&version=Blog%20Main&contentCollection=Opinion&action=Click&pgtype=Blogs®ion=Body&_r=0
http://www.eschatonblog.com/2014/09/krgthulu.html#disqus_thread

NO PRICE FOR THE MAD - By Charles P. Pierce

Back in 2010, as part of a biannual act of madness by which the magazine endeavors to analyze every congressional race in the country, I had occasion to talk to Tarryl Clark, who was challenging Michele Bachmann on behalf of the splendidly name Democratic Farmer-Labor Party for Bachmann's job in Minnesota's Sixth Congressional District. How, I asked Clark, does one make good use of the rich trove of lunacy that is Bachmann's entire public career.

"Well," Clark told me. "I'm not going to call her crazy, if that's what you mean."

In fact, that was exactly what I meant.

The great failing of the Democratic party over the past three-and-a-half decades has been the party's failure to take political advantage of the obvious prion disease that has afflicted the Republican party since it first ate all the monkey-brains in the mid-1970's. Whether this was out of cowardice, incompetence, or an overly optimistic view of the inherent sanity of the electorate, is no longer an issue. The failure to make the Republican crazee the Republican party's standing public identity has encouraged the increased spread, and the increased virulence of the prion disease, with disastrous consequences for the rest of us. Why, in the name of god, would you not call Michele Bachmann crazy? Because it might offend the people who vote for her? It's supposed to offend those people. Those people beg to be offended, and, by doing so, you at least inject into the discussion the notion that the Republican party has thrown its marbles gleefully to the four winds. A few elections later, that may become the general opinion. After all, the Permanent Republican Majority wasn't built in a day.

..........


the rest:
http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/What_Could_Have_Been

Dining Out With The Koch Bros.

Ferguson Police Dept ---"Body Camera OFF"

Police also confirmed today that the wounded officer had a body camera, but that it was turned off during the incident.

St. Louis County Police Sgt. Brian Schellman, a police spokesman, said he did not know why the camera was off.

Ferguson police officers began wearing body cameras on Aug. 31, three weeks after a white police officer, Darren Wilson, fatally shot Michael Brown Jr., an unarmed black teenager.

Police originally reported late Saturday night that the officer spotted two suspects trying to break into a business and that when confronted, one of them pulled a gun and fired at the office, wounding him in the arm.

Police, however, now are describing a different scenario: that the police officer, during a business check, saw a male subject in the rear of the Ferguson Community Center. When he approached, the person began to run and the officer followed on foot. During the pursuit, the man spun around and fired at the officer, who was hit in the left arm, before disappearing in the wooded area behind the center.

MORE:
http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/police-searching-for-only-one-suspect-in-ferguson-police-shooting/article_21e165ad-1f7f-5ae8-b30a-fb9d9dc40afe.html

Angry cosmonaut

nuff said:

?

Yelena Serovais is to be the first Russian woman on the International Space Station. She is also the fourth Russian woman in space. Valentina Tereshkova was the first woman in space way back in 1963, twenty years before Sally Ride became the first American woman in space.

So at a press conference, what was she asked about? Her make-up. When Serova ignored that question, attention moved to her hair. At which point Serova gave the response this deserved:

1412001602
Published on Sep 26, 2014

MORE Ruth Bader Ginsberg: SCOTUS Is Way Out Of Line on Abortion- "A New Form Of Big Brother"

JR: And for dissents, your Gonzalez v. Carhart dissent is quite memorable.

RBG: That was in a partial-birth abortion case. And there what concerned me about the Court’s attitude, they were looking at the woman as not really an adult individual. The opinion said that the woman would live to regret her choice. That was not anything this Court should have thought or said. Adult women are able to make decisions about their own lives’ course no less than men are. So, yes, I thought in Carhart the Court was way out of line. It was a new form of “Big Brother must protect the woman against her own weakness and immature misjudgment.”

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/dc/ruth-bader-ginsburg-swipes-anthony-kennedy-abortion

MTV's Voter’s Self-Defense Guide 2014







read about it here:
http://act.mtv.com/voter-defense-guide-2014/

CLIMATE OF TERROR --- by Tom Tomorrow

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http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/09/29/1332787/-Cartoon-Climate-of-terror

KRUGMAN: The INVISIBLE Super Rich---Americans have no idea just how unequal our society has become.

Americans have no idea how much the Masters of the Universe are paid, a finding very much in line with evidence that Americans vastly underestimate the concentration of wealth at the top.
http://www.people.hbs.edu/mnorton/norton%20ariely%20in%20press.pdf

.......................

...........the truly rich are so removed from ordinary people’s lives that we never see what they have. We may notice, and feel aggrieved about, college kids driving luxury cars; but we don’t see private equity managers commuting by helicopter to their immense mansions in the Hamptons. The commanding heights of our economy are invisible because they’re lost in the clouds.

.........

Does the invisibility of the very rich matter? Politically, it matters a lot. Pundits sometimes wonder why American voters don’t care more about inequality; part of the answer is that they don’t realize how extreme it is. And defenders of the superrich take advantage of that ignorance. When the Heritage Foundation tells us that the top 10 percent of filers are cruelly burdened, because they pay 68 percent of income taxes, it’s hoping that you won’t notice that word “income” — other taxes, such as the payroll tax, are far less progressive. But it’s also hoping you don’t know that the top 10 percent receive almost half of all income and own 75 percent of the nation’s wealth, which makes their burden seem a lot less disproportionate.

Most Americans say, if asked, that inequality is too high and something should be done about it — there is overwhelming support for higher minimum wages, and a majority favors higher taxes at the top. But at least so far confronting extreme inequality hasn’t been an election-winning issue. Maybe that would be true even if Americans knew the facts about our new Gilded Age. But we don’t know that. Today’s political balance rests on a foundation of ignorance, in which the public has no idea what our society is really like.

The Rest:
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/29/opinion/paul-krugman-our-invisible-rich.html?_r=0
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