The report’s respected authors, former Army Secretary Togo West and retired Navy Adm. Vernon Clark, said Defense Secretary Robert Gates did not charge them with finding out what happened. They were tasked with discovering whether there were any gaps or deficiencies that would hobble future efforts to identify internal threats and protect the force.
And they proceed to tap-dance around the truth, the facts, and any questions that would force them to give an actual answer. Just wonderful.
A little more on the level of bullshit here, including
Mr. West, at a second Pentagon news conference with Admiral Clark, said the problem with “self-radicalization” in the military was not rooted in Islam. “Suppose it were fundamentalist-Christian-inspired,” Mr. West said. “Our concern is not with the religion. It is with the potential effect on our soldiers’ ability to do their job.”
Bull-effing-shit. If 'fundamentalist-Christian-inspired' people were going around their units, let alone giving talks at conferences, talking about stoning people and killing anyone who doubted their beliefs truth and primacy, they'd have been noted as a dangerous nut and investigated and dealt with; you cowards have made it worth someones career to do so about a muslim. And you don't have to balls to deal with that, so you say crap like this.
If someones religious beliefs involve killing anyone who won't accept them and supporting terrorists- including at the cost of betraying your oath as an officer- then that religious belief IS of concern, whether you have the integrity to say so or not.
Captain's Journal also has some information on how the Anbar Awakening actually happened, and the problems- in some cases near idiocy- of trying to use the mythology of Anbar to set up actions in Afghanistan.
Note: as I recall, the Brits in Iraq were very big for a time on "We don't walk around in battle-rattle, we wear hats instead of helmets to show a friendly face", etc., and it blew up in their faces in the long run; they were acting as if they were patrolling in Ireland and expecting the same mindset and reactions from Iraqis(As I recall; been a while since I read on this).
Went over to Sipsey Street and ran across(among other things) this bit on the idiotic Brooks column whining about 'the not-well-educated being against the ideas of the educated class'. One part:
Since we can no longer count on being able to plan, we must adapt. When planning doesn’t work, centralization of authority is at best useless and usually harmful. And we must harden: that is, we need to build robustness and the capacity to self-heal and self-defend at every level of the system. I think the rising popular sense of this accounts for the prepper phenomenon. Unlike old-school survivalists, the preppers aren’t gearing up for apocalypse; they’re hedging against the sort of relatively transient failures in the power grid, food distribution, and even civil order that we can expect during the lag time between planning failures and CAS responses.
CAS hardening of the financial system is, comparatively speaking, much easier. Almost trivial, actually. About all it requires is that we re-stigmatize the carrying of debt at more than a very small proportion of assets. By anybody. With that pressure, there would tend to be enough reserve at all levels of the financial system that it would avoid cascade failures in response to unpredictable shocks.
Cycling back to terrorism, the elite planner’s response to threats like underwear bombs is to build elaborate but increasingly brittle security systems in which airline passengers are involved only as victims. The CAS response would be to arm the passengers, concentrate on fielding bomb-sniffers so cheap that hundreds of thousands of civilians can carry one, and pay bounties on dead terrorists.
I'll pass over the brain spasms so many would have over the idea of bounties; the basic idea boils back down to the Israeli criticism that "You are looking for things instead of looking at people." Problem we run into is that the same people who think 'Free Mumia!' is striking at racism and blame any and everything except the person committing the crime are of the same mindset as the clowns setting up a lot of the security theater; don't blame people, don't look for dangerous people, blame and look for things; it's just so much more sensitive and caring...
ShrinkWrapped on Brown. Some good stuff, including this quote:
It never ceases to amaze me that the very same folks who jumped on the Dede Scozzofava is a big fat RINO bandwagon have been going gaga over a candidate who is arguably even more liberal than Scozzofava
Brown’s score puts him at the 34th percentile of his party in Massachusetts over the 1995-2006 time period. In other words, two thirds of other Massachusetts Republican state legislators were more conservative than he was. This is evidence for my claim that he’s a liberal even in his own party. What’s remarkable about this is the fact that Massachusetts Republicans are the most, or nearly the most, liberal Republicans in the entire country!
Shor’s research shows us that even compared to Dede Scozzafava, Scott Brown is a very liberal Republican.
The point is that the "base's" support for Brown is a bit ironic in light of their continual excoriation of so-called RINOs. It's also a vindication for what many moderates (including yours truly) have been saying all along: rigid ideological litmus tests and a small tent approach are a sure fire prescription for staying out of power.I think it purely boiled down to two things:
1. The Stupid Party was so busy playing games it didn't really want to get into a challenge to Coakley, and ticked-off people took over,
2. It was someone with a 'R' after his name actually going after this Senate seat in MA; even if Brown wasn't someone they'd push for in their home district, he would be a real change in MA in some ways and therefore was worth helping.
We'll see what happens with him.
As of last night, had some storms blow through but the worst stuff was south & east of OKC. At this point, between fall rains, the blizzard and this all the ponds and lakes ought to be up to the brim. Good thing, but it's too wet outside to edge or whatever. Ah well, more cleaning and organizing is always needed inside(I just looked around the room; dammit, where do I put some of this stuff?!?)