January 11, 2010
Just a guess, mind you, but I guessing that more than a gazillion people have talked about, written about, made grand-standing speeches about and/or debated the issue of the attempted attack by terrorist Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab on Christmas day. But the aftermath of how to handle him, from a legal standpoint, is what’s caught my ear.
Just as my fellow blogger over at Cynical Synapse pointed out a week or so ago, politicians are trying to make political hay out of what was nearly a national tragedy. And as CS implied, that’s a crying shame. Now Rudy Giuliani has jumped on that political band wagon.
Here’s the really sad (and pukey sickening) thing about this controversy — according to a report by The Center on Law and Security, more than 62 defendants have been convicted of federal crimes of terrorism between 9-11-01 and 9-11-07. Notice the word “federal”, meaning civilian court. In case you didn’t pay close attention to the dates, the Bush administration was in power during that time. In addition, two of the Gitmo prisoners of war that were released under the Bush/Cheney regime are now important leaders of al Qaeda in Yemen. Yet, here we have nearly all GOP members, including his royal (pain-in-the-ass) highness Dick Cheney, and many of their blind followers lashing out at President Obama and the Democrats for deciding to try Abdulmutallab in civilian court.
In the piece reporting on Giuliani, the writer quotes “an administration official” as saying 100 people have been convicted in federal court over the past nine years for terrorism offenses and only three from a military commission. Maybe that number is accurate, but I found no official document quoting that number. However, the referenced document above does have a breakdown of more than the 62 I mentioned (see extracted chart below). And you can read this (lengthy) report by the same Center for a detailed breakdown of all trials and convictions.
I won’t single out Giuliani here, as the list is too long and still growing of those who are on the “persecute Obama” band wagon. But there’s an old saying that goes “if you live in a glass house, don’t throw rocks”. However, that doesn’t seem to apply to politics or politicians. They don’t worry about yesterday or tomorrow — today is their only concern. Except, of course, when it comes to gaining/retaining power and a higher personal fortune.
As ordinary readers and voters, it’s up to us to stop this sort of crap. Until we quit “choosing up sides” and start throw the same mud back into the faces of those who are throwing it at us, nothing is going to change. Whether it’s your Party or that other hated Party, it’s your duty to call all of them down on all things that are not 100 percent true and accurate, and on their hypocrisy. When do you plan to start? And will you suddenly have “better things to do” when your party is in power and revert back to your own hypocrisy?
Never underestimate the difficulty of changing false beliefs [with] facts.
Economist Henry Rosovsky