The Widdershins

Archive for the ‘Terrorism’ Category

*Not* a Mardi Gras float. From Bellingham Wa. 1926*

* Link for above photo


Not having Prolix writing his fantastic, informing and erudite Fridays posts anymore has played havoc with our posting schedule, but I know we all understand.  We just miss his posts.  Since DYB normally writes his posts for Wednesday I’ll now try to have mine ready for Saturday.  Naturally none of this is guaranteed.

During this past tumultuous week I was watching one of the news shows someplace and saw a mention of the time when the Ku Klux Klan had a mindbogglingly huge march in our nation’s capital.  In fact there were two such marches, and from what I could gather they were in 1925 and 1928.

It appears that back then the guys (and kids and gals) didn’t feel the need to hide their faces.  I suppose that came about in later years.

From the Washington Post:

The Ku Klux Klan was at the height of its popularity when more than 30,000 members — racists and anti-Semites marching 22 abreast and 14 rows deep – paraded down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington on Aug. 8, 1925.

“White-robed Klan cheered on march in nation’s capital,” read the front-page headline in The Washington Post the next day.

The Washington Post almost waxed rhapsodic over the march in D.C. which was still segregated at the time.

Nearly a century ago, the Klan was welcomed to segregated Washington by its white residents, as the breathless coverage in The Post demonstrated.

“Phantom-like hosts of the Ku Klux Klan spread their white robe over the most historic thoroughfare yesterday in one of the greatest demonstrations this city has ever known,” read The Post’s account.

“the Ku Klux Klan booked 18 trains for their march and rally. Hotels filled with the hooded men. Lunch stands and tobacco shops quickly sold out. The Klan even brought their own ambulances to escort those felled by the August heat.”

Sounds like business was good for the city!

The Kluxers marched for over three hours and ended at the Washington Monument where speeches were supposed to be given.  The event got rained out.

The evening of the next day the Klan had a gathering at Arlington Park horse grounds and lit up a huge 80 foot cross.

More from the Post article:

Many of the hooded marchers showed their faces — a rather telling indication that the group, responsible for lynchings and other acts of terror, could operate with impunity. At the time, the Klan boasted a national dues-paying membership of nearly 5 million men and 500,000 women. The shedding of the masks was a subject of internal debate for the group, a move that some felt would grant their organization added legitimacy and respectability. (bolding mine)


“You had many members of the KKK who were politicians — senators, congressmen, statehouse representatives,” said Kendi, “and that only encouraged the members to appear publicly without their hoods.”

Indeed, the 1924 Democratic convention was known as “the Klanbake,” because the party by a razor-thin margin voted against an anti-Klan plank in its platform.

OMG – the Klanbake!

All of this made me kind of curious so I went out looking for images of those marches and downloaded a bunch of them.  I’ve created a slideshow of them for you to view some of these images.  I also got a pic of the newspaper report of tRump’s dad Fred being arrested.

I won’t say I hope you enjoy viewing these images but I hope you consider it as something that happened before and in these times, something similar could happen again. Click the middle button to start the slideshow.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Open thread of course.



Good (?) Monday Widdershins

Due to mb being very, very busy with real life and stuff I’m putting this post up to move things along and to provide us with some further topics of discussion.

Trump says give more $$s to defense


His orangeness has decided to give D.o.D. a 10% increase in its budget because, you know, there’s never enough money to hand out to Lockheed Martin, Boeing Aerospace, Raytheon, General Dynamics and the like.

President Trump will propose a federal budget that dramatically increases defense-related spending by $54 billion while cutting other federal agencies by the same amount, according to an administration official.

The proposal represents a massive increase in federal spending related to national security, while other priorities, especially foreign aid, will see significant reductions.

Yeah because foreign aid is such a large part of the federal budget.

How much of the federal budget goes to foreign aid?

What’s your best guess? 10 percent? 20 percent? 1 percent?

If you’re like most Americans, you probably guessed wrong.

In December, the Kaiser Family Foundation polled 1,505 people. Only 1 in 20 knew the right answer: less than 1 percent of the $4 trillion federal budget goes to foreign aid. The average respondent estimated that 26 percent went toward assisting other countries.

What’s more, our ignorance colors the way we think about foreign spending. Fifty-six percent of the poll respondents thought the U.S. spends too much on foreign aid. Once they were told that the U.S. spends less than 1 percent of the federal budget on foreign aid, only 28 percent still thought the nation was overspending.

Going back to the WaPo piece:

“We are going to do more with less and make the government lean and accountable to the people,” Trump said. “We can do so much more with the money we spend.”

The White House did not specify how Trump’s budget would address mandatory spending or taxes, promising that those details would come later. The vast majority of federal spending comes from programs Trump can’t touch with his budget. Social Security costs were approximately $910 billion last year, and Medicare costs outpaced defense spending with a total cost of $588 billion in 2016. Medicaid, interest payments on existing debt, and miscellaneous costs made up an additional $1.2 trillion combined.

Ah the old familiar “do more with less” axiom.  Generally it meant that shit just piled up and got backlogged as agencies tried to prioritize the elements of their mission.

More bomb threats against Jewish community centers and schools

More fallout from the alt-right/neo nazis?

Jewish facilities around the nation were rocked by yet another wave of bomb threats Monday, forcing evacuations in at least 12 states.

At least 20 Jewish community centers and day schools in Alabama, North Carolina, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Florida, Maryland, Michigan, Virginia and Delaware received threatening phone calls, The Huffington Post has confirmed.

This is the fifth wave of threats JCCs have received since the start of the new year.

I just don’t understand it.  What is the point in threatening children?  You want to discuss terrorism Donnie, try the home-grown version.

Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, said that sometimes Jewish community centers and day schools are either “co-located” or near each other. “It is deeply troubling to see that these anti-Semites are expanding their scope to target a broader section of the Jewish community,” Greenblatt said. “These JCCs often house preschools and elder care programs and they often house after-school activities for teenagers.”

There have now been more than 160 bomb threats made to over 60 Jewish community centers since January.

There’s much more at the HuffPo link including a graphic of the number of threats against JCCs.

Big surprise from the Justice Dept (not)

Jefferson Beauregard Sessions (the turd) is already hard at work doing what he does best:  turning back civil rights to the “golden era” say around 1850 or so.

The Department of Justice is reversing the federal government’s position in an important voting rights case, involving a Texas voter ID law. The switch was not unexpected following the election of Donald Trump and confirmation of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. Both Trump and Sessions claim voter fraud is a major problem and have backed voter ID laws.

DOJ says it will file a motion later Monday asking a federal court to dismiss the department’s earlier claim that the ID law was enacted with the intention of discriminating against minority voters. That claim was made by the Obama administration as part of a broader legal challenge to the law, which is among the strictest in the nation.

I wish I had Adobe Photoshop or something similar so I could put Col. Cornpone’s face on a garden gnome since that’s about what he reminds me of.

In a written statement, Gerry Hebert of the Campaign Legal Center, which represents some of the plaintiffs, said, “I am appalled and disgusted that DOJ would abandon their claims, that they have advocated for the last six years, that TX’s photo ID law was enacted with a racially discriminatory purpose.”

A federal appeals court last year agreed that the law had a discriminatory impact, but asked the lower court to reconsider its findings that the law was passed with a discriminatory intent.

A few other news items in my RSS feed:

Trump urges insurers to work together to ‘save Americans from Obamacare’

Yeah because 20 million people now having health care…SAD!

Link to Dubya’s comments on the press in a democracy

Alrighty folks.   This was literally thrown together in about twenty to thirty minutes so ignore any typos, bad grammar or anything else that reflects a general sloppiness on the part of the writer. 

Of course it’s an open thread.


An Absence of Fairness

Good Monday, all, and I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful.  In the spirit of that holiday, I’d like to thank my favorite Preznit, Ronnie Dearest, for making it possible for our politicos to attack other politicians and institutions with impunity. Yes, I’m talking about the Raygun Administration’s revocation of the Fairness Doctrine.

n 1985, under FCC Chairman Mark S. Fowler, a communications attorney who had served on Ronald Reagan’s presidential campaign staff in 1976 and 1980, the FCC released a report stating that the doctrine hurt the public interest and violated free speech rights guaranteed by the First Amendment.

In August 1987, under FCC Chairman Dennis R. Patrick, the FCC abolished the doctrine by a 4-0 vote, in the Syracuse Peace Council decision, which was upheld by a panel of the Appeals Court for the D.C. Circuit in February 1989, though the Court stated in their decision that they made “that determination without reaching the constitutional issue.”[16]


Fowler said in February 2009 that his work toward revoking the Fairness Doctrine under the Reagan Administration had been a matter of principle (his belief that the Doctrine impinged upon the First Amendment), not partisanship. Fowler described the White House staff raising concerns, at a time before the prominence of conservative talk radio and during the preeminence of the Big Three television networks and PBS in political discourse, that repealing the policy would be politically unwise. He described the staff’s position as saying to Reagan:

The only thing that really protects you from the savageness of the three networks—every day they would savage Ronald Reagan—is the Fairness Doctrine, and Fowler is proposing to repeal it![22]

Instead, Reagan supported the effort and later vetoed the Democratic-controlled Congress’s effort to make the doctrine law.

Since the Fairness Doctrine was revoked, we’ve seen the rise of infotainment, complete with “he-said/she-said” opinion journalism, and the empowerment of the right-wing noise machine, including “think tanks” whose sole purpose is to twist the public discourse away from reality (which as we know, has a liberal bias) to the skewed, black-is-white worldview of the top 1%.

I draw a bright line between this revocation and the rise of delusional movements like modern conservatism, whose members hold beliefs that, despite their unshakeability, lack any basis in reality. One of these beliefs, disgustingly promoted by some of the top Republican contenders for President, is the alleged propensity of Planned Parenthood to sell baby parts. There were videos, which were since proven to be deceptively edited, which were used to “prove” the accusation and sow outrage in the Republican base. As usual, none of these brainless f*cktards gave a thought to the way this would affect people who, by definition, are only loosely tethered to the world as we know it. Predictably, some RWNJ with a gun decided to avenge those alleged murdering psychos at Planned Parenthood by…becoming a murdering psycho at Planned Parenthood.

Robert Lewis Dear allegedly killed three people and injured 9 others yesterday at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado. In the hours after the shooting little was known about Dear or his motivations.

Saturday evening, those motivations began to come into focus. NBC News and the Washington Post reported that, after the shooting, Dear told law enforcement officials “no more baby parts.”

The phrase clearly references a series of videos released by the Center for Medical Progress, an anti-abortion advocacy group. The videos alleged that Planned Parenthood was illegally selling body parts from fetuses for profit. These allegations were untrue and the videos relied on deceptive editing.

Read the rest of this entry »

A wintry Wednesday to all our Widdershin friends. I hope you are warm and enjoying mobility without the assistance of a dogsled team. I’m still on the puny side. This round of meds seems to have me just behind Bruce Jenner in my transition or so it seems. As we say here in the Big Blue Nation of Kentucky Wildcat basketball, this course of steroids has me in the throes of men-o-paws.

About half my day is spent in fits of hot flashes, shaking nervousness, and just general unfocused anxiety. All I can say is if I had had one chromosome of athletic ability, steroids would have been enough to send me back to the library as the nerd I was destined to be. Even watching the Westminster Dog Show, ’roid rage has caused me to be irritated at the Affenpincher.

As a way of introduction into today’s subject, let’s review: In the thirteen years since 9/11, almost 8,000 Americans have Democracybeen killed and somewhere between half a million to a million Iraqis and Afghanis are dead, we have irrevocably broken or maimed hundreds of thousands of others, spent about $3.0 Trillion, and perfected the art of creating failed nation states courtesy of what conservative thought leaders call the “worst foreign policy decisions in the history of the country.”

Astonishingly, in these thirteen years only 65 Americans have been victims of what could be conceivably described as terrorist acts. While uncomfortably close to the modern-day heresy of science, statistically, there is a 1 in 1,700,000 chance of dying at the hands of terrorists. Conversely and with an astronomically higher probability, you have a 1 in 700,000 chance of being bonked in the head by a meteor.

Yet in these thirteen years there has not been an iota of reexamination in the foundational premise of nation building — a neo-con anathema until Dubya’s selection as President. Since that time nation building, premised upon democratization, has been the vestigial tail plaguing the fever dream wars of the neo-cons. No one dares question this last point since one-size-fits-all democracy is little more than a third grade panacea plumbed from the intellectual depths of a dime store mirror.

What got me thinking about this was last Sunday morning’s discussion on Meet the Chuckles Todd. Senator Jack Reed was giving the Democratic perspective and John “Get off my yard” McCain was giving the Republican spin. As might be expected, Reed thought we should have never invaded Iraq and McCain thought we should have never left Iraq. Yawn. Neither inquiry was much beyond the old axiom of, “If all you have in your toolbox is a hammer, everything begins to look like a nail.”

Translated into the lack of American foreign policy self-reflection, this axiom becomes: When you have the most lethal and effective armed forces in the history of the world, everything begins to look like a war. Here’s a news flash — we can bomb extremists with impunity, but it will never eradicate the extremism. We have tried to force the hammer of participatory democracy into hands ill-prepared to do much beyond break, harm, or kill based upon insular tribal philosophies.

My thinking on this subject was bolstered by an excellent piece of long-form journalism in The New Yorker by Jon Lee Anderson entitled The Unraveling. The subject is Libya and the east/west civil war now consuming the failed nation. It is a long read, but a good one detailing the unintended consequences of a possible Somalia on the Mediterranean. Given the long historical affiliation of France and Libya, France led the interventionist charge with the U.K and the U.S. reluctantly agreeing, but agreeing nonetheless.

A French philosopher named Bernard-Henri Levy was one of the first to lead the charge for intervention. Here are his reasons when asked, “Why did you support attacking and intervening in Libya?”

Why? I don’t know! Of course, it was human rights, for a massacre to be prevented, and blah, blah, blah — but I also wanted them to see a Jew defending the liberators against a dictatorship, to show fraternity. I wanted the Muslims to see that a Frenchman — a Westerner and a Jew — could be on their side.

At its essence are these words any different from the heraldic claims of “American exceptionalism” surrounding the Iraq War? Granularly, it’s the same egotism as “American exceptionalism” — whatever that is — showing the world we are draped in deep blue hero stuff and whatever we do couldn’t possibly be as bad as the unknowns lurking just beyond the horizon.

Gen. Khalifa Haftar, former Qaddifi operative and financed political refugee, former CIA affiliated Virginia resident, now, General of the Libyan National Army

Gen. Khalifa Haftar, former Qaddifi operative and financed political refugee, former CIA affiliated Virginia resident, now, General of the Libyan National Army

What is politically suicidal in questioning this type of American egotism is a simple truism: Need begets despair and that desperation fathers violence. It is this orphaned violence that then looks for meaning by craving a sense of self and needing a place to be. It is this type of violence that easily falls prey to the perfect predator of a cause, be it ISIL, Al Qaeda, jihadists, ethnic militias, tribal warlords, or disaffected young men trolling the internet.

To dare advance such a notion is inviting an instantaneous political scrum with you at the bottom. A perfect example is Deputy State Department Spokesperson Marie Harf who said essentially what I have written here and was met with a vociferous cacophony of derision.

It seems as if this lesson though, without being enunciated as a policy, might be gaining purchase. We can no longer police the region of the Middle East while at the same time being criticized by the beneficiaries of that unending patrol. For instance, after twenty-one Egyptian Christians were symbolically beheaded on the Mediterranean shore facing Rome (either old Rome or “new Rome” of Constantinople), another 45 burned alive, Egypt started bombing Libya. Jordan and the U.A.E. are bombing Syria. Europe is now reexamining its own security and reconsidering criticism of the intelligence troves we have supplied them through NSA phone intercepts.

All in all, sixty countries are now contemplating their own positions and policies regarding terrorism and radicalization. It seems nothing so much as concentrates an autocratic despot as his impending demise at the hands of a murderous mob.

It is just this simple — a ballot box will never resolve radical extremism without first being preceded by a lunch box. We can never expect a mishmash of 7th century theology to be superimposed on the realities of the 21st century and translate into anything other than unfocused anger. It is this anger, unfettered by law or cultural ostracism, that finds its most productive channel in conspiracy theory atrocity barbarism.

There are successful models of this type of delayed democratization transformation — Singapore, Taiwan, One Size Fits AllSouth Korea, Malaysia — of setting in place the necessary structures for economic success before subjecting the transitioning government to the ballot box. It isn’t neat. It isn’t 30-second sound bite friendly. It isn’t quick. It does make us face an uncomfortable reality. Before we dismantle a country’s social structure — no matter how offensive it is to our traditional sensibilities — a compatible social structure must be in place to regulate and eventually modify behavior.

Why is this important? This issue will be the central focus of the 2016 Presidential campaign. Hillary is uniquely qualified to understand the inherent weaknesses of the old neo-con dogma. Let’s hope she has the opportunity and strength to bring that much-needed learning to the world.

Take the conversation in any direction you might like.

For a simpleton such as myself, the release of the long-awaited Senate Report on the CIA’s use of torture has been singularly unsatisfying. The report, authorized by a 14-1 vote of the Intelligence Committee, was limited to nothing more than a review of the CIA’s own “traffic” consisting of internal documents and email among the CIA’s own officers.

The report wasn’t exhaustive. It wasn’t all-encompassing. It wasn’t an in-depth investigation with sworn testimony by Rattlesnakethose in decision-making roles. It was only a recapitulation of what the CIA was saying to itself taken from contemporaneous communication among CIA functionaries. From the six million pages of raw material a six thousand page report was generated and from that a six hundred page executive summary was spawned.

This Himalayan mountain of material has produced the same-old tired cacophony of James Bond/Jack Bauer’esqe excuses for what took place in secret prisons around the globe. I’ve learned nothing and I bet you haven’t either.

At the end of the day, this entire debate is simply about “values”. For most of us that debate was settled by the time we were in the second grade. Let me explain.

The following is an exercise I have used with thousands of leadership students in order to drill down on the concept of values. After taking a good long look at the photo above, think about and then answer the following questions.

If you were taking a hike and saw that creature fifteen yards in front of you would you go out of your way to avoid it?

If given the opportunity, would you forego the opportunity to touch, hold, and pet that creature?

Would you forbid your son or daughter from keeping that creature as a household pet?

Would you kill that creature if you saw it ready to strike a family member or friend?

Likewise, would you kill that creature if you saw it ready to strike an unsuspecting unknown stranger?

Finally, would you capture that creature, place it in captivity, and systematically torture it to death?


Read the rest of this entry »

rolling stone cover-bomber

Good Monday to you Widdershins.  For whatever reason, nothing is particularly bothering me today so I don’t have a lot to say or write about.  I just have a couple of things and then will turn it over to you all in the comments to talk about whatever may be on your minds today.

Obviously the Rolling Stone magazine cover has stirred up some controversy.   The mayor of Boston asked that Rolling Stone do some more stories, but of  “…the brave and strong survivors” and of the “doctors, nurses, friends and volunteers who helped them.’.    A number of chain stores, including CVS, Rite-Aid, Walgreens and 7-Eleven made the decision not to carry the issue.  In its own defense, Rolling Stone issued a statement:

the magazine said its thoughts were “always with” the bombing victims and their families.

“The cover story we are publishing this week falls within the traditions of journalism and Rolling Stone’s long-standing commitment to serious and thoughtful coverage of the most important political and cultural issues of our day,” it said. “The fact that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is young, and in the same age group as many of our readers, makes it all the more important for us to examine the complexities of this issue and gain a more complete understanding of how a tragedy like this happens.”

Well, I’m not in that age group but I do have a subscription to R.S. and do read it.  I may not read it cover to cover but it’s a magazine I’ll at least glance through.  For now, I’ve just set this edition aside and I may read it later.

Matt Taibbi took to his column to defend his publication.

If indeed we were just a celebrity/gossip mag that covered nothing but rock stars and pop-culture icons, and we decided to boost sales and dabble in hard news by way of putting a Jim Morrison-esque depiction of a mass murderer on our cover, that really would suck and we would deserve all of this criticism.

But Rolling Stone has actually been in the hard news/investigative reporting business since its inception, from Hunter S. Thompson to Carl Bernstein to Bill Greider back in the day to Tim Dickinson, Michael Hastings, Mark Boal, Janet Reitman and myself in recent years.

One could even go so far as to say that in recent years, when investigative journalism has been so dramatically de-emphasized at the major newspapers and at the big television news networks, Rolling Stone‘s role as a source of hard-news reporting has been magnified. In other words, we’re more than ever a hard news outlet in a business where long-form reporting is becoming more scarce.

He discusses “the photo”…

If the Rolling Stone editors had brought Tsarnaev in to its offices near Rockefeller center, wined and dined him, and then posed him for that Jim Morrison shot, then yes, that would be reprehensible.

But that’s not what the magazine did. They used an existing photo, one already used by other organizations. The New York Times, in fact, used exactly the same photo on the cover of their May 5 issue.


But there was no backlash against the Times, because everyone knows the Times is a news organization. Not everyone knows that about Rolling Stone. So that’s your entire controversy right there – it’s OK for the Times, not OK for Rolling Stone, because many people out there understandably do not know that Rolling Stone is also a hard-news publication.

And he concludes by saying:

It’s impossible to become too self-righteous in the defense of something like a magazine when the bottom line of this story is, has been, and always will be that people were cruelly murdered or mutilated through Tsarnaev’s horrible act. That truth supercedes all others and always will.  So this is a defense of Rolling Stone that I’m not shouting at the top of my voice. What happens to the magazine and its reputation is really of little consequence in the grand scheme of things. But I do think this has mainly been a misunderstanding, one that hopefully will be cleared up in time.

Personally I think what they should have done was to possibly use a cropped version of the “teen angel” pic right above one of the boat he was hiding in, like this photo:

bomber in boatOf course I’m not the editor of Rolling Stone magazine so…

Moving along…

This piece by Paul Krugman caught my eye the other evening.

I’m sure you all know that we have just a God-awful problem with pensions here in the U.S.  They are underfunded, promise too much to employees and we just can’t afford the things.  It’s a time-bomb waiting to blow up on us…you know, like Social Security.  Except that according to Krugman, it’s not.

OK, this is quite amazing: Dean Baker catches the WaPo editorial page claiming that we have $3.8 trillion in unfunded state and local pension liabilities. Say it in your best Dr. Evil voice: THREE POINT EIGHT TRILLION DOLLARS. Except the study the WaPo cites very carefully says that it’s $3.8 trillion in total liabilities, not unfunded; unfunded liabilities are only $1 trillion.

Krugman goes on to say “trillion, schmillion”…”It still sounds like a big number, doesn’t it? Dean tries to compare it with projected GDP, which is one way to scale it. Here’s another.”

the Boston College study doesn’t just estimate assets and liabilities; it also estimates the Annual Required Contribution, defined as

normal cost – the present value of the benefits accrued in a given year – plus a payment to amortize the unfunded liability

And it compares the ARC with actual contributions.

According to the survey, the ARC is currently about 15 percent of payroll; in reality, state and local governments are making only about 80 percent of the required contributions, so there’s a shortfall of 3 percent of payroll. Total state and local payroll, in turn, is about $70 billion per month, or $850 billion per year. So, nationwide, governments are underfunding their pensions by around 3 percent of $850 billion, or around $25 billion a year.

A $25 billion shortfall in a $16 trillion economy. We’re doomed!

Paul the only thing I can say is that state and local governments have been doing that for years and that’s the biggie issue behind these unfunded liabilities; the government not contributing what they should have been all along.  However, at a time when the Repubs control a majority of the statehouses and governors chairs, don’t look for those government entities to bother with paying what they’re supposed to.  Not when ALEC and the Koch Bros. are buying, uh contributing major bucks to all of those Repub governors.  No, the “little people” don’t need pensions.  Those and golden parachutes are just for the rich folks.  The same goes for health care too, by the way.

Okay folks that’s all I’ve got today.  What’s on your minds this Monday?

This is an open thread.


Pasting in from Wiki:

Hallelujah is a transliteration of the Hebrew word הַלְּלוּיָהּ (Modern halleluya, Tiberian halləlûyāh), which is composed of two elements: הַלְּלוּ (second-person imperative masculine plural form of the Hebrew verb hallal: an exhortation to “praise” addressed to several people[1] ) and יָהּ (Yah).
And in informal use:  In modern English, “Hallelujah” is frequently spoken to express happiness that a thing hoped or waited for has happened. When used in this way, the word does not necessarily indicate religious belief or intentions on the part of the speaker. An outward expression of joy or the exhilaration of joy.

At around 8:45 p.m. EDT yesterday Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was captured and taken into custody.

A number of words and phrases went through my mind as I was watching the news and the announcement was made:  Thank God, Phew!, It’s Over, and any number of others.  But considering the informal use, Hallelujah seems pretty much okay to me.  Yes…an exhilaration of joy that the people of Boston are no longer gripped by terror, or forced to stay within the confines of their homes.  Happiness that the murderers of at least three or possibly four innocent people are either dead or captured, but either way they’re off the streets.

But now come the questions.  What was the motive?  What were the reasons behind the attack and subsequent events?  Were these two brothers “planted” terrorists?  Did someone “convert” them to terrorism as a means of some type of revenge or justification for something?  Did one or the other suffer some personal slight that caused them to react this way?  The aunt of these two terrorists (my words, no one has been convicted of anything yet) believes they were set up to take the fall for the bombing.  I know they all came from Chechnya and that area has had a history of fighting and terrorism so perhaps Maret Tsarnaev’s paranoia and  suspiciousness can be overlooked.  She certainty paints a different picture of Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

I have heard any number of speculations as to why these two young men did this:  that they felt like they didn’t fit in, life in America wasn’t what they had thought it would be, ad infinitum.  Well hell, try being a young guy in rural Appalachian K Kentucky who is beginning to feel like he’s pretty sure that his romantic interests are not going to follow the “normal” path.  That’s not fitting in!  But still I had no desire to go out and blow up anybody with a pressure cooker bomb nor shoot anyone to death.


Let’s be honest.  Was it a good thing that they captured Dzhokhar alive or should they have just taken him out and gotten it over with?  You know, no muss no fuss, no lengthy trial.  Personally I’m glad they caught him alive so that we can maybe find out what the cause of this was all about.  Now will he talk?  Who knows but at least we’ll have the opportunity to try to find out why this happened.

And what about the fact that Dzhokhar (I have to paste that in every time) was not Mirandized?  According to HuffPo:

The public safety exception permits law enforcement officials to engage in a limited and focused unwarned interrogation of a suspect and allows the government to introduce the statement as evidence in court. The public safety exception is triggered when police officers have an objectively reasonable need to protect the police or the public from immediate danger.

Is that something new that came about after 9-11 when so many changes to our rights were made in the name of security?  Has this been used before?  Will this give his defense lawyers another reason for appeal?

Will he be tried in a Massachusetts state court or will there be a reason for trial at the federal level?  If he is tried at the federal level will the Feds seek the death penalty as they did with Tim McVeigh? But there was a reason the Feds tried McVeigh:

On August 10, 1995, McVeigh was indicted on 11 federal counts, including conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, use of a weapon of mass destruction, destruction by explosives and eight counts of first-degree murder.


The U.S. Department of Justice brought federal charges against McVeigh for causing the deaths of eight federal officers leading to a possible death penalty for McVeigh; they could not bring charges against McVeigh for the remaining 160 murders in federal court because those deaths fell under the jurisdiction of the State of Oklahoma.

There were no federal officers killed in the Boston bombing so I wonder if the Federal government goes after him (and I’m assuming they will) will they use the weapon of mass destruction idea?  I suppose we’ll know soon enough.  I do know I was extremely happy when I saw this tweet from the Boston P.D.:

Okay!  This is an open thread.  Share your thoughts and feelings in the comments below.

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Blog Archive

January 2019
« Dec    

Kellyanne Conway’s new job

Take the kids to work? NO!

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

“The” Book

Nice picture of our gal

Time till the Grifter in Chief is Gone

Hopefully soonerJanuary 21st, 2021
24 months to go.

Mueller Time!

Wise Words from Paul Ryan


Only the *best* politicans bought by the NRA

Marching for their lives

Perfect Picture

Rudy: oh shit the pee tape IS real!

Need Reminders?

Never too early to shop for Christmas

“Look this way”

Manafort’s Jail Photo

Indeed who?

Trump spam

IOW Dumb = Happy?

Simply Put


Awrite! Here’s your damned wall