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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A Terrorist is not a Needle in a Haystack

A typo in a long novel is a needle in a haystack. A diamond ring lost on a beach is a needle in a haystack. A good candidate in a pile of resumes is a needle in a haystack. A terrorist is not.

All the terrorists who have attacked the US in the past 30 years had a lot in common. All were men and except for McVeigh, all were Muslims. Almost all of them were between 15 and 40. Almost all of them were forthright in their anti-American views.

The Secret Service takes all threats to the president seriously and interviews the people who make them. They do this even though every single person who makes them turns out to be a harmless crank. All of the people who have successfully attacked a president were smart enough to lay low and stay off the radar. People who make threats want attention.

Since the potential terrorists are easy to spot, they should be questioned. Profiling, you say? Yes, it is profiling and there is nothing wrong with that. Everyone profiles all the time because it's usually correct. That guy with a face tattoo is probably not a neurosurgeon. That guy in an expensive suit is probably not going to mug you. That woman walking by a road late at night in a tube top and hot pants is probably not the chair of the Women Studies department. That guy with a Confederate flag bumpersticker is probably not a vegan.

If the NSA, FBI, LSMFT, and all the rest of the alphabet soup insist on spying domestically to thwart terrorists, is it too much to ask that they watch and question the likely culprits?

The 9/11 hijackers were under all kinds of surveillance. Everyone who met them knew they were up to no good, and yet they were never confronted by people whose job it is to root out those sort of people. As far as I can tell, the reason for this is inter-agency bickering between the FBI, CIA, NSA, etc. If that's the problem, disband all except one or disband all of them and replace them with one agency. What actually happened is they created yet another agency which is supposed to oversee and integrate all of them. Which, as we all know, solved the problem once and for all.



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