Thursday, December 31, 2009

Keeping 'em honest

Soon after the attempted Christmas day terrorist attack to blow up flight 253 bound for Detroit, several Republican politicians and talking-head propagandists have been taking full partisan advantage of an opportunity to score some political points. These persons include former Vice President Dick Cheney, Republican strategist Karl Rove, Republican Congressman Peter King, Republican Senator Jim DeMint, and Republican Congressman Pete Hoekstra.

Fortunately, the White House is firing back.

And MSNBC, particularly via Rachel Maddow, is keeping them honest.

Yep, you heard it right. In addition to trying to capitalize politically by attacking the President for presiding over a country in which there was a failed terrorist attempt — something they used to claim they deserved to win more elections for — they've sunk even lower now. They are trying to raise money off of terrorism.

I suppose the Republicans are getting desperate for money these days, and if they have learned anything over the past decade, it is that fear & paranoia can be a real cash cow!

In a related issue, I think it is important to set the record straight on something. It has been widely reported among the talking-heads on TV (including Chris Matthews), conservative blogs (including Andrew Sullivan), and certainly from Republican politicians looking to capitalize politically, that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano had said that "the system worked" in regards to this terrorist attack.

I, too, thought her remarks (or my understanding of them) to be outrageous; absolutely unacceptable. But while I have no love for the entire concept of the Orwellianesque "Office of Homeland Security", once I did a little more research on this, reviewed the video footage, I have come to realize that the comment truly was taken out of context. The Ms. Napolitano was referring to what the system did after the incident. Which, admittedly, is really not that important a discussion compared to what happened before. It is the before that she and the administration should be focused on. Nonetheless, it is important to keep the proper perspective on all this and to form honest assessments.

In addition, the President has referred to this incident as a systemic failure.

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