Archive for December, 2009
The Crotch Bomber Smoking Gun: People And Policy Let This Guy Through AND There’s A Second Bomber On Board?Thursday, December 31st, 2009
This story just gets worse and more distressing. First, the government failed miserably as A.J. Strata demonstrates in a must-read piece. Here’s his conclusion:
The NCTC has computer connections to State, CIA, FBI etc. They see their reports almost as they are being entered. Their databases are being updated constantly.
The other detail is devastating. Now we add to all the connections I noted above that would have easily been caught by 1990’s computer (Abdulmutallab, Yemen, Nigeria, al-Aulaqi) one more data item that clearly makes it impossible that the dots were never connected:
The U.S. also had intelligence that between August and October of this year, extremists in Yemen were talking about operations. Someone known as “the Nigerian” was mentioned, and they had a partial name — Umar Farouk.
As in Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. No computer is going to miss that one. These dots had to be ignored by a human generated policy that overrides the output of the computer. Someone had to actively dismiss the evidence – no way that it was never connected. The computers could not miss connecting this data – unless they have been faulty for nearly 10 years now and never connected a single dot in all their years of operation and testing.
Second, a lawyer and witness on this flight insists that there is a co-conspirator involved and the government is covering it up. [Once again, MSM collusion. You’d think this would be a big scoop if any of them cared to investigate.] From MLive and the passenger and lawyer Kurt Haskell [another must-read post]:
Seriously Mr. Ron Smith, how stupid do you think the American public is?
Mr. Ron Smith’s third version of the story is an absolute inplausible joke. I encourage you, Mr. Ron Smith, to debate me anytime, anywhere, and anyplace in public to let the American people see who is credible and who is not.
I ask, isn’t this the more plausible story:
1. Customs/FBI realized that they screwed up and don’t want to admit that they left flight 253 passengers on a flight with a live bomb on the runway for 20 minutes.
2. Customs/FBI realized that they screwed up and don’t want to admit that they left flight 253 passengers in customs for 1 hour with a live bomb in a carry on bag.
3. Customs/FBI realize that the man in orange points to a greater involvement then the lone wolf theory that they have been promoting.
Mr. Ron Smith I encourage you to come out of your cubicle and come up with a more plausible version number 4 of your story.”
Go read the whole thing.
Taken together, not only did the government egregiously screw up (yoo hoo? where is Hilary Clinton?), but the government is now covering up what appears to be a more extensive plot. This was not, it seems, a case of a lone bomber.
At least I think that’s what happened. Not sure. Here’s the good news, if a little late for the cannibalized companies:
In a summary decision so brief as to slip under the radar of many, the U.S. Supreme Court settled the law about this (at the time) white-hot legal issue with a silent bolt of lightning, vacating the appeals court ruling affirming the original judge’s legal reasoning.
A “summary decision” to overturn is taking this position: the original ruling was so dramatically improper that there’s no point even bothering to hear arguments as to why it should be upheld. Smack-downs such as these are very rare in American jurisprudence.
Now, the Supreme Court didn’t undo the sale of Chrysler; it merely took a stand that there should be no illusion that treating secured creditors – the ones who are supposed to get paid back first, from liquidation if need be – may not be so openly shortchanged in favor of unsecured creditors, such as the UAW and the U.S. government.
While Chrysler is a done deal, those who viewed the precedent established by the Chrysler case as a way to begin a new regime of quick bankruptcies will have to live with disappointment.
More from The Bankruptcy Litigation Blog:
Hard to ignore today’s bombshell summary disposition by the US Supreme Court today on the Indiana Pension Funds’ appeal of the Second Circuit’s decision in Chrysler (see earlier discussion of case here). Clearly, however, the Court’s six line summary disposition tossing the 2d Circuit’s decision in Chrysler requires careful thought. First, here’s what the Supreme Court held:
The petition for a writ of certiorari is granted. The judgment is vacated, and the case is remanded to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit with instructions to dismiss the appeal as moot. See United States v. Munsingwear, Inc., 340 U.S. 36 (1950).
One may be tempted (as this esteemed blogger was) to claim that Chrysler remains persuasive authority, but was simply “vacated on other grounds.” I don’t think that’s the case here, however. For starters, the Supreme Court couldn’t have vacated Chrysler on the basis that the matter was moot at the time the case was decided. After all, the 2d Circuit’s original order of 6/5/09 denying the appeal on the merits wasn’t moot at the time of entry since the effectiveness of the bankruptcy court’s sale order had been stayed by the 2d Circuit itself until it had a chance to rule on the merits. Additionally, the effectiveness of the 2d Circuit’s judgment itself was stayed by the Supreme Court. As such, there’s no basis for the Supreme Court now to have vacated Chrysler based on an argument that the matter was moot at the time of the original decision.
So, I think this restricts the Government’s ability to just take troubled company assets.
Whiteriver, AZ (LifeNews.com) — A pregnancy center in rural eastern Arizona that serves a predominantly native American population was severely burned in what appears to be an arson attack. The Living Hope Women’s Center clinic has closed indefinitely as a result of a fire that gutted a portion of the building on December 20.
And this will adversely affect the community:
The center president told the newspaper that ATF officials asked her if the pregnancy center was involved in anything controversial that might have sparked a hate crime.
“The agent very gingerly asked if we were involved in ‘anything controversial’ in our ministry,” she said. “You can imagine what they hear about Crisis Pregnancy Centers, abortion clinic bombings and the like. I assured him that even though we are a CPC ), our work was mostly pre-natal and parenting and that the culture in Whiteriver is very pro-life.”
She told the newspaper the apparent arson will set the pregnancy center back quite a bit financially and logistically.
“When we think of everything we had in there it is a bit overwhelming. We had just gotten two new computers, a new ultrasound machine, a very large screen TV and of course our beautiful, huge Mommy Store. But these are things that can be replaced. One greater challenge will be where do we go from here?” Monahan asked.
She is concerned because the availability of buildings in Whiteriver is very scarce.
Monahan indicated the Whiteriver pregnancy center had 400-600 visits every month from the low-income people who live in the community.
“As our staff stood outside the building, clients would come and cry as they looked at the devastation,” she said. “This ministry is so loved by so many there. We are looking at our options, one which is to lease a large lot and build or place a modular on it. Whatever we do, build, remodel or use a modular, we feel strongly that the people of Whiteriver are the ones who should do it.”
Well, the crime, since it was on a reservation, is a federal crime. It will be interesting to find out who committed this attack.
Regarding increasing German troops in Afghanistan via the Weekly Standard:
Stinner acknowledged that the Germans “need to do their fair share” but that the cultural hurdles to greater German military involvement were great. “Germans are the most risk-averse people in the world,” he says. And they are not so easily inclined to go to war, following 60 years of social reengineering: “You wanted to have peaceful Germans. Now you have them. Don’t complain.”
He kinda has a point.
Caleb Howe of RedState joins me to discuss this mess.
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While the President enjoys a Hawaiian vacation (it’s exhausting butting your head against the will of the people over and over and over), his D.C. people scramble and make the barely botched terrorist attack much worse.
A.J. Strata has a must-read piece about the finger-pointing while Obama is mid-golf swing:
It is a lame excuse for State to say ‘we were not required to inform NCTC that they needed to tell us to revoke a potential terrorist’s visa – and we were not required to tell them that he had one needing to be revoked’.
And I thought I had heard it all! What a bunch of double speak.
As the facts in this case trickle out from panicked career bureaucrats and lame political appointees, the picture we are seeing is one where DC is in flames, covering butts while the President vacations in Hawaii. Obama should have been back by now to right things. But he is to inexperienced to see the political danger signs, let alone the national security warning bells.
President Obama’s…what is it?…apathy? indifference? incompetence?…actions seem to always be wrong.
There’s a reason why it’s always wrong and I’ll write about that later, but for now, the fact is that we’re stuck with a man who does the wrong thing. It stinks.
The American people are not being reassured. The economy suffers. National security suffers. And, America’s standing in the world suffers.
Rats in the Obama administration scatter. Meanwhile, the cat plays. When he comes back to town, you can bet there will be some trapped rats that get drowned. But the problem is the cat will still be the cat.
And that, my friends, is a metaphor or analogy or verbal jujitsu that goes too far. Sue me. I’m on vacation. Let’s face it. The Obama administration is a mess. I actually bought that Barack Obama was a smart guy. I figured he would learn from his missteps and for political reasons right the ship, but I don’t see that happening.
In fact, I see 2010 sucking worse than 2009. The economy has many reasons to double dip. The terrorists will be emboldened by the scatter-brained actions of the administration.
Sorry for the misery. I’d like to be more hopeful. I just don’t see it.
And on that happy note, I’m going back to entertaining myself. Watching Mythbusters and Dirty Jobs this vacation. You know what? It’s concrete. There’s laws of physics and things made and things blown up. It’s a nice antidote to the vagaries of politics and culture.
Remember how you felt after 9/11? I do. The bile still boils into my throat thinking about those soulless bastards enjoying sucking life out of a vital, trusting, open America. That feeling was renewed as I read the account of this American family returning from Ethiopia after adopting two children, ages 6 and 8, who had never flown in a plane:
But then, the gravity of the situation came over the whole family.
“As the seriousness progressed, and we knew that this could possibly be it, my husband and daughter put their hand through their seats and we all held hands in a circle and sang ‘Jesus Loves Me’ and we prayed, and we just made it as much of a game as we could and make them completely innocent as to what was happening.”
“The holding hands gave us a real sense of peace. If it happened that point, it would happen. We were ready. We just weren’t ready for it to happen for the kids. We just kept thinking, ‘God didn’t bring us this far, to go through all of this, to shorten these kids’ lives,’ and sure enough, He didn’t.”
Once the flight attendants told everyone that the suspect was under control, and the fire was contained, Patricia said that most of the people handled the rest of the flight “fabulous.”
“We all sat in our seats. We stayed calm, other than (hearing) crying. Shortly thereafter, the captain said they were making an emergency landing.
The terrorists succeeded. Do you get that? They succeeded. They terrorized a whole plane of people. Killing them all would have been a huge bonus, but not necessary. The terrorists consider their worthless lives forfeit, anyway. They are brain-washed into loving death. They are black. Empty. Void. So to die or to not die means nothing. To terrorize, now that’s exciting.
And it makes me angry. Enraged. And it should make you angry, too. This could be your family. This could be your child.
These bad guy scum need to be expunged from existence. Period. Anything less than annihilation and we will have to live with this sort of threat forever.
When people read something like what Donald Sensing wrote and believe it is true….:
In announcing the pending charges against Schuringa the Justice Department spokesman said that after being treated for his burns, Abdulmutallab told a federal agent that Schuringa had slugged him in the mouth. Abdulmutallab pointed to his swollen lip as evidence of the assault.
“It’s now well established in anti-terrorism operations that you cannot just go around slugging murderous terrorists in the mouth,” said the spokesman. “What’s fair for Navy SEALs will be fair for Mr. Schuringa. The law is the law.” He added that Attorney General Eric Holder had approved charging Mr. Schuringa with assault.
The spokesman’s reference was to the pending court-martial of three Navy SEALs facing assault charges related to their capture of Ahmed Hashim Abed, the terrorist who planned the March 2004 ambush, killing and mutilation of four American contractors in Fallujah, Iraq. The contractors’ burned bodies were then hanged from a bridge in the city. After being captured by the SEALs last month, Abed claimed that his fat lip was caused by one of the SEALs punching him in the mouth. Military officials arraigned the three SEALs earlier this month on multiple charges, including assault.
…the public trust is gone.
Related question: Is the Obama administration already done? Have they gone so completely off-course that there’s no redeeming themselves in the eyes of the public?
I think a lot of mistresses will be happy with this new policy:
Unwed heterosexual couples in the Foreign Service are seeking the same family benefits extended this year to homosexual couples, U.S. officials said.
In June, President Barack Obama gave homosexual spouses of federal employees the same family benefits — minus health insurance and pension — that the spouses of heterosexual federal workers receive.
In the Foreign Service, those benefits mean paid travel for the spouse to and from overseas posts; visas and diplomatic passports; emergency medical treatment; and shipment of household possessions.
Unmarried Foreign Service couples argue they are entitled to equal treatment and at least one couple has threatened to file a discrimination suit, the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.