Lone Gunman Theory

Just a reminder that the last domestic bombing at a sports event was the Atlanta Centennial Park, it was part of a series by a right-wing extremist whose other targets were abortion clinics and a lesbian bar, and the media frenzy surrounding false accusations arguably ruined the life of Richard Jewell, who was actually a hero whose actions saved lives. In other words, it was pretty much the opposite of 9/11 (domestic not foreign perpetrator, individual not group, aimed at internal not international politics). Yet all the references that I heard on the teevee yesterday were to 9/11.

All speculation about who did this is premature and pointless, but if people with hundreds of hours of airtime to fill have to speculate, I hope they can remember that there were other events in our history besides 9/11. And that they’re very rare. (via)

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
264 replies
  1. Walker says:

    There was all this excitement yesterday about a Saudi “suspect”. Turns out he was just questioned and cleared.

  2. JPL says:

    @cvstoner: Giuliani was on CBS news and he said he was surprised that we haven’t seen more episodes like this. Cheney would point the finger at Iran, imo.

  3. jon says:

    Eric Rudolph had plenty of help being a lone gunman, but no one needs to look into that because Jesus.

  4. Patricia Kayden says:

    I’m like John Cole. Gonna give it a rest until something develops. Listening to Classic Rock instead of Bill Press.

  5. Kay says:


    The confusion stemmed from the phrase “in custody”.
    Whoever spread the rumor doesn’t know what that means, and the rest of the dopes just followed the first dope.

  6. JPL says:

    This weekend in the Atlanta Dogwood festival which draws a large crowd. I’ve only gone once but it is a nice event.

  7. Bobby Thomson says:

    There’s always the possibility of a premeditated attack on an individual target, made to look like something else. Some people believe that’s what the Tylenol murders were all about. And a scheme like that would work by playing on the prevailing anxiety of the time. Back in 1982 it was serial killers.

  8. TAPX486 says:

    If THE GOP gets it’s wish and implements the Ryan budget plan there will be no FBI/homeland security/border patrol, etc. to protect the country from these kinds of events. China is monitoring a new version of the bird flu but without a CDC and public health agencies the US would be powerless to respond if the flu went global. The wingnut right seems to think all of this stuff just happens by magic rather than the result of a lot of people at all levels of government working long hours to keep the ‘system ‘ running. None of this comes cheap.

  9. Todd says:


    Eric Rudolph had plenty of help being a lone gunman, but no one needs to look into that because Jesus.

    It still pisses me off that he wasn’t waterboarded for names and connections before being given a needle.

    Instead, they quickly gave him a life sentence in order to protect his co-conspirators, some of whom may be prominent in conservative circles.

  10. c u n d gulag says:

    This is when 24 hours Cable TV news is at its worst.

    All of those hours to fill, and all of those people who don’t know jack-sh*t, more than willing to opine.

    And, of course, I’m sure that Rush, Geller, Beck, Malkin, Savage, Drudge, etc., will fill their sycophantic followers heads with hours and hours of their trademarked propaganda, about how it was without a doubt the Ebul Moozlums who done it!

    And, if it turns out it was some rightie or rightie group instead, they will quickly switch to, it was an “isolated nut,” or an “isolated group of nuts,” and “nothing to do with Conservatism, yadda, yadda, yadda…”

  11. Zam says:

    I really hope it is a right wing extremist. Not for political purposes, but if it turns out to be a Muslim extremist the drums of war will beat even louder and we could be looking at a lot more dead people and explosions in some other part of the world. If it turns out to be right wing extremism we will arrest some guy, probably look into some others and the Fox News crowd will scream and cry about how oppressed they are and Obama is just like Hitler, like every single other day.

  12. beltane says:

    Everything is like 9/11 unless it is a natural disaster and then it is like Katrina. Cable news kills more brain cells than sniffing glue and is not nearly as enlightening.

  13. Ryan C says:

    Let’s not forget the anthrax attacks. Or the Oklahoma City Bombings. Or the unibomber. Or the DC sniper.

    Literally every single attack I can remeber that hasn’t taken place on an airplane has been caused by domestic weirdos.

  14. Aimai says:

    I’m retreading Proust, which I read a couple of times about twenty years ago. Now I’m retreading it with a pen in hand like my highschool English teachers taught me–next year my 14 year old will have my English teacher as her English teacher and I’m nostalgic. Age and despair at the human condition, love and hope, make this time through Proust an incredible experience. In the words of Alexandre Dumas and his half hatian slave father “wait and hope.”

  15. Derelict says:

    Well, if this does turn out to be perpetrated by a Muslim extremist, I’m sure we’ll find a way to invade Iran. Sure, maybe the guy’s a Saudi working for a Sudanese group financed by ex-Libyans, but we’ll bomb Tehran because FREEEEEEDDDOOOOOMMMMM!!!!!111!!!!

  16. raven says:

    BREAKING: Westboro Baptist Church to picket funerals of those dead by Boston Bombs! GOD SENT THE BOMBS IN FURY OVER FAG MARRIAGE! #PraiseGod

  17. Valdivia says:


    I just saw on TPM and that they even wen to his house and searched it. Because people told the police he looked suspicious running away from the blast. Just kill me now.

  18. Geoduck says:

    @Ryan C: There was the first WTC bombing, but yeah. A homemade bomb set off in Boston, on Tax/Patriot Day? I’m gonna go right ahead and speculate, and suspect this’ll turn out to be another domestic nutcase of some stripe.

  19. Fort Geek says:

    I spent a week in Atlanta in late 1995; one of the places we visited was The Otherside Lounge, the lesbian club that got bombed. Really nice place–quiet conversation area and bar up front, dance floor down the hall to the rear. Everyone was friendly. Double-sided fireplace ringed by couches and comfortable chairs.

    Unhealthy emotion or not, I hate wingnuts.

  20. Robert Sneddon says:

    @Ryan C: The first bomb attack on the World Trade Center back in 1993 with a truck bomb in the underground carpark was by an al-Queda-inspired group of Muslims. They failed, got caught, prosecuted and jailed.

  21. Valdivia says:


    I don’t think he is a suspect. The news item says he cooperated fully with the police and he has claimed no involvement. It seems–then again who knows right?–that people saw a brown person running away from the blast and reported him to the police. And he has burns. And a visa as a student. As AL mentioned yesterday in that area an international student watching the marathon is just so common. Then again, this guy could be the guy and we will be treated to Obama didn’t keep us safe and didn’t say terrorism for now til eternity.

  22. Randy P says:

    @Aimai: I know nothing about Proust except a couple of comedy references: a Monty Python skit (the “Summarize Proust Competition”) and a character in “Little Miss Sunshine” who is supposed to be the #2 Proust expert in the world and gunning for #1. I’m sure I’m missing 90% of the joke in both cases.

    I’ve already reached saturation on Boston coverage myself. Waiting for facts, which are at this point nearly nonexistant. I guess the only thing we know for sure right now is that we should cut some benefits for the middle class and poor, cut some taxes on oil companies and rich people, and bomb somebody who speaks Arabic. Those things always seem to work.

  23. Tokyokie says:

    @Valdivia: And none of the non-Middle Eastern-looking people running away from the blasts looked suspicious despite doing the same damn thing. If this were the work of Islamists, some group will issue a credible claim of credit for it, and soon. (Actually, it probably should have been done by now.) If it’s a domestic job, then nobody will claim responsibility. The longer the time that no claim is made,the more likely it is to have been of domestic origin.

  24. Todd says:

    Am getting new tires and an alignment. Sadly, they have Matt Lauer and Brokaw spewing opinions on their TV.

    If I did conceal carry, I’d be tempted to shoot a hole in the TV.

  25. jibeaux says:

    When someone dies and makes me God, the Westboro Baptist Church is getting smited. And there will be a note reading, “Actually, I love fags.”

  26. Punchy says:

    @Walker: And yesterday there were 3 bombs and 2 unexploded ones. Today, there’s only 2 bombs (unrelated fire at library) and ZERO unexploded bombs found. Just how does the story pick up so much bullshit and get repeated with zero fact-checking?

  27. Valdivia says:


    Those were my thoughts. I mean we could be wrong and this person could really be involved but it seems to me that people just pointed at the guy because he looked Arab and that was it. Then the police just had to follow up on it to the very end in an ‘abundance of caution’. But what bs. For ages the right wingers will say he was really to blame, even if he wasn’t.

    A question, given the type of devices used,why would he have more serious burns if he were involved? That sort of doesn’t make sense to me.

  28. weaselone says:


    It makes little sense for this student to be the bomber. If he wanted to go out in the explosion, he could have easily done so. He could even have utilized a suicide vest to take out first responders. If he just wanted to witness the results of his attack, he could have easily positioned himself in a safe location and triggered the devices without injury. It also doesn’t fit with the existence of other devices. If his goal was to detonate them as well, he wouldn’t have positioned himself in the blast radius of one of the first two bombs even if his goal was to somehow draw suspicion away from himself by being among the injured.

  29. Anya says:

    @Valdivia: Frankly, it doesn’t matter who did it. A terrorist is a terrorist, regardless of ideology. What matters is that they are brought to justice, and hopefully, we stop incidents like these in the future. I don’t care if his name was Smith McWASP or Mohamed Al Arabi.

  30. Suffern ACE says:

    @raven: I’m so glad Patrick wasn’t snarky. I would have said “actually, sir, we’ve decided shock doctrine for this one, not false flag.”

  31. beltane says:

    @Valdivia: It reminds me of the extended period of stupidity after 9/11 when a Jewish Israeli citizen of North African descent was one of the people rounded up for questioning. It took quite a while for them to figure out he wasn’t AQ material. With stupidity like this it’s amazing that any crimes at all are ever solved.

  32. OGLiberal says:

    This was not a suicide bombing. So why would the bomber be close enough to get burns? Even if these were triggered devices, the two were a block or two apart so whoever triggered them didn’t need to be right next to them. If you’re not a suicide bomber, you drop the package and leave. That’s what the Ramzi Yousef gang did in the first WTC bombing, that’s what the Madrid bombers did, and the Unabomber mailed his packages. Why on earth would the bomber in this case be anywhere near the bombs when they went off? Not saying this isn’t the guy but given the above and the fact that he’s fully cooperating, doesn’t look like he is. But he is guilty of being brown and Muslim so that’s grounds enough, I guess.

  33. Xenos says:


    Eric Rudolph had plenty of help being a lone gunman, but no one needs to look into that because Jesus

    I think the FBI has a pretty good idea exactly who was helping Rudolph, and has kept an eye on them since then. Better to keep that community cowed and tracked rather than risk driving them further underground. Would like to think that, at least.

  34. FridayNext says:

    Anyone else looking forward to seeing The Central Park Five tonight?

    Just seems like a timely story to watch right about now.

  35. liberal says:

    About the Saudi national—was listening to news radio on the way into work this morning. The guy (so and so williams from ABC News?) said that the residence in Revere was indeed that of the Saudi national, but he said that it’s very possible that they did that search just to be thorough, and given the fact that (according to him) not all that much stuff was seen being carried out as evidence, the best bet is still that he had nothing to do with it.

  36. Kay says:


    so he must still be a suspect.

    I think “suspect” generally has a specific meaning too, when a police agency uses it. They’re using “investigation”, which is meaningless, as to him or his status.

    In any event! It doesn’t matter how we use it. As long as the police agencies are precise and don’t get let media get ahead of the facts because obviously there are people with a political agenda who will seize on anything they say.

    It’s tough, because we were manipulated after 9/11, with language. No one can undo the damage that was done to credibility.

  37. handsmile says:


    Would agree that tackling Proust is no easy task, but does “retreading” actually help? :)

    After watching morning broadcasts of Al-jazeera and BBC America, clicked onto MSNBC/CNN coverage. Saw Tagg Romney being interviewed by CNN. Turned off the television.

  38. TAPX486 says:

    and just one more example that the wingnut right is beyond hope is they are criticizing Obama for his proposal to sell the gov’t owned TVA. It seems the local congress critters are concerned that a for-profit owner would raise rates to market levels. They are much happier with the lower taxpayer subsidized rates. I thought the free market was the answer to all of our problems. Maybe we should sell the FBI to Blackwater

  39. beltane says:

    In the unlikely event the Boston bombing was the work of a Saudi national, does this mean we invade Saudi Arabia?

  40. Todd says:


    Better to keep that community cowed and tracked rather than risk driving them further underground. Would like to think that, at least.

    I prefer to think of his co-conspirators, aiders and abettors marking time on death row while experiencing worry and doubt as to whether their meeting with Jesus comes after the needle prick.

  41. liberal says:

    IMHO the cops during the Susan Smith episode did very well, despite her attempts at misdirection. Maybe she was a terrible liar.

    The Boston case of Charles Stuart, not so much. (I was in grad school in the Boston area at the time.)

  42. TAPX486 says:

    @OGLiberal: Spin this the other way – he was close enough to the bomb to be burned, therefore he might have seen the person who left the bomb. The fact that he was burned would make him a possible witness, regardless of skin tone, nationality etc.

  43. OGLiberal says:

    Story in the NY Post (I know) says the guy was tackled by another bystander while he was running from the blast. Tackler said he looked “suspicious”. Person running from bomb blast! Perfect normal. Brown, mooslem looking fella running from bomb blast? Suspicious!

    Again, could be the guy – but is he under suspicion basically because he ran away from a bomb?

  44. liberal says:

    Yeah, that’s funny. I carry no water for Assad, but it’s funny to see outlets like the Wash Post bleating about how evil he is, while at the same time one of the governments supporting the rebels effectively enslaves half its population.

  45. The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge says:


    Hell, no! The 9/11 attacks were carried out by 18 Saudis and 1 Egyptian. So we invaded Iraq! If this guy’s a Saudi, we’ll invade Iran!

  46. beltane says:

    @FridayNext: That case more than anything else is what made me regard TV News people as vermin of the lowest, and most disease-ridden sort. Unless they proves themselves otherwise, my assumption is that every TV journalist is an ethically-challenged sleazemonger pandering to the interests of the powerful.

  47. liberal says:

    I assume he’s nominally under suspicion because people on the scene told the cops he was suspicious.

    It’s a terrible thing, but the cops really don’t have any choice but to investigate him as a potential lead. If they do so with a reasonable modicum of courtesy and let him go after he’s cleared, it’s regrettable but not really the cops’ fault.

  48. WereBear says:

    @liberal: Maybe she was a terrible liar.

    When I saw her on television, my Liar’s Radar pinged like mad. But the police were helped by the quick fact that the light she claimed to have stopped at was a blinking yellow. There was no possible reason for her to have stopped, much less for a “threatening stranger” and this blatant falsehood helped them focus.

    Charles Stuart gave off no such easy clues.

  49. Schlemizel says:


    But this morning the BPD reported they have no suspects in custody. That could mean a lot of different things but I really think the FBI needs to arrest Richard Jewell so we can all speculate on his stunted social life

  50. Alex S. says:

    The more time passes without someone claiming responsibility, the less likely it was political terrorism. And the more likely it was someone who did it just because he could. This makes it more likely that he will at least try to do it again.

  51. jibeaux says:

    @liberal: One of the details I seem to remember from that case was that she claimed to be stopped at a red light on a rural road in east nowhere when she was carjacked — I think that was the story — but the light she described was one that would have stayed green unless there had been cross traffic triggering it to turn.

  52. Schlemizel says:


    I want that on a bumper sticker!

    Cable news kills more brain cells than sniffing glue and is not nearly as enlightening

  53. Keith G says:

    @OGLiberal: That might be the case, and it certainly has to do with a citizen observing the kid “acting suspiciously” and following and detaining him after the explosions.

    Given the citizen’s report, the police undoubtedly needed to follow up. At that point the question become one of, “Did the authorities act professionally?” At present, it appears that they did.

  54. Shortstop says:

    It doesn’t require speculation about the perps to call it what it fucking is: terrorism. I’d be happy if most major media sources could bring themselves to do that.

  55. Valdivia says:

    that was along what I was thinking.

    yep. Just sheer stupidity. As someone mentions above he can very well be a witness. But hey, because he is The Brown, let’s make sure we name him as suspicious.

  56. Kay says:


    It’s also hard because we don’t know what else they’re doing. That’s what I always have trouble with. They could be reporting that search because that’s the initial story they followed. The place is absolutely crawling with law enforcement. I don’t know what else or who else they’re looking at.

  57. Schlemizel says:


    BTW, were, my reply in the last thread was more aimed at the post you were responding to. I was in a hurry as I had to leave for work & realized it may not have come of that way. That comment you replied to was a doozie of ‘rack’ speculation

  58. aimai says:


    They aren’t cowed, though. Zero evidence that they think they are in danger.

    On the subject of the Muslim guy taken in for questioning lets not go nuts arguing that this is a sign of the racism and /or incompetence of the BPD. As others have pointed out Boston is a god damned international city and the race itself is international in scope. They didn’t round up all the “usual suspects“–there have to have been hundreds, if not thousands, of islamic looking (and even islamic!) people standing on the streets that day and only one guy was taken in for questioning. That could absolutely have happened randomly.

  59. Rosalita says:


    This weekend in the Atlanta Dogwood festival which draws a large crowd. I’ve only gone once but it is a nice event.

    I LOVE the Dogwood Festival, I miss Atlanta in the spring

  60. Anya says:

    @Schlemizel: I honestly don’t even want to speculate anymore. Who did it doesn’t change anything. The result is the same. But it would be really nice if everyone just STFU about their theories or whether the president used “terror” or not, while people are still trying to find out if their loved ones are okay.

    For 5-freaking hours we didn’t know anything about my brother who was one of the runners. He’s a little shaken up but fine.

  61. artem1s says:


    Rudolph is still alive and housed at the pleasure of the Federal Govt at a supermax facility in CO. You were perhaps thinking of McVeigh?

  62. Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @liberal: I heard something last night that said a civilian tackled him while he was running from the scene. And how did this civilian pick him out of all the other people running from the scene?

  63. Shortstop says:

    Tagg Romney and his family left the race sidelines moments before the blast…hmmm. That is one bitter-ass family.

    Okay, I know I shouldn’t even joke like that. I’ll take my punishment.

  64. Birthmarker says:

    @WereBear: I always watch for “crying” with no actual tears. Smith did this on national television.

    Even if this ends up being domestic, O is still soft on terrorism because he is a secret Muslim. Oh and also false flag. (Unfortunely these memes are from my sad, sad FB page.)

  65. aimai says:

    @Randy P:

    As for Proust, I loved the Monty Python parody. Maybe its an acquired taste but everything is in Proust, its like the Mahabharata or the Bible. You just have to immerse yourself in it. It is very soothing in the midst of all this horror and bathos. I also recommend reading it with a biography of Proust and his time adn with The Hare with the Amber Eyes, which I also just finished, which gives you a different sense of the period and the people. But it is a hard slog if you don’t swing that way.

  66. Patricia Kayden says:

    @Keith G: Better than the incessant yapping about something that no one knows anything about as yet. I watched Paul Mooney last night to get some laughs (though I know that his kind of humor is highly controversial).

  67. Scott S. says:

    I’m still pissed that there aren’t any statues of Richard Jewell in Atlanta. The guy was a genuine fucking hero, and he got treated like shit, even after he was cleared.

  68. OGLiberal says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent): That’s pretty much my point. Not whether or not the police and feds acted professionally in questioning and investigating the guy but that we are so conditioned – even in commie Boston – to immediately wonder, “What is that Arabic looking guy doing?” Answer here may simply be, “Running away from an explosion, like everybody freaking else.”

  69. liberal says:


    Charles Stuart gave off no such easy clues.

    True. IIRC, though, it took a really long time for them to figure things out. Much longer than would appear to be reasonable.

  70. liberal says:

    IIRC at the time, one of the things that people claimed made him “suspicious” was that he was too rigid about enforcing rules at one of his day jobs.

    Probably just a bunch of goddamn “rules are for other people” people. I see that sh*t all the time on the capital beltway.

  71. Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    After not-watching cable news for years it was easy to not-watch it yesterday. Consequently, I was as ignorant about the actual events in Boston as any other citizen – only without commercials.

  72. Cassidy says:

    @Anya: Glad to hear your brother is okay.

    I have to disagree with the rest: who did it does change things and is very important. We are at a tipping point of rhetoric and implied violence and history has shown that when one extremist decides to move beyong the fantasies into action for their ideological “cause”, there are more coming. If this were “standard” terrorism, then it’s more of the same; the status quo hasn’t changed. If it’s RW, or even LW, Anarchist, or Libertarian, domestic terrorism then it means that the inherent cowardice of the individual(s) is being overcome by the ideological rage and that’s a very bad thing.

  73. Redshirt says:

    Just so we’re all clear about the Right Wing in this country, here’s a sample quote from the brave FreeRepublic Patriot “Monorprise”:

    I don’t feel any such rage this time, not even sadness. I spent much of the last 4 years horrified at what the people of Boston have helped do to the rest of us. I guess a part of me don’t feel they are our countrymen anymore.
    So its kind of like an attack upon foreigners, in fact that’s exactly how it feels.

    Country First!

  74. Todd says:


    Rudolph is still alive and housed at the pleasure of the Federal Govt at a supermax facility in CO.

    I know.

    You were perhaps thinking of McVeigh?

    No. Just expressing the way things oughtta be.

  75. Face says:

    Regardless of guilt or innocence, that Saudi guy’s name will get reported eventually and his life in the States will be completely fucked. He’ll certainly be No Fly Listed, likely under surveillance for weeks/months, and phone tapped. And good luck on campus with all the wingnut classmates…

  76. JPL says:

    The police commissioner is a big guy. I know that Patrick is short but this guy is a foot taller.

  77. MikeJ says:

    @Redshirt: (Quoting a freeper)

    I spent much of the last 4 years horrified at what the people of Boston have helped do to the rest of us. I guess a part of me don’t feel they are our countrymen anymore.

    Even the wingers hate Romney. Or should I say especially the wingers.

  78. Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Patricia Kayden: If the tale I heard yesterday is true, he was just the only “Mulsim-looking” guy who was tackled by J. Random Citizen at the scene and turned over to the police for “acting suspicious”. Haven’t had time this morning to look for any debunking of that story.

  79. beltane says:

    @Redshirt: I always thought that if the 9/11 attacks had been carried out by white people and not Middle Easterners, there would have been dancing in the streets of red state America. Hatred of liberals is the overwhelming passion of these people’s lives.

  80. Todd says:

    Patrick and the Mass pols and police are coming off nicely on camera. Not as scary liberals, but as calm professionals doing their jobs.

  81. trnc says:

    There’s nothing like the rarity of an event to excite the mainstream media, as opposed to routine and every day events such as gun crimes and accidents.

  82. Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Raven: God help me, I am going to stick up for the JWL guy from last night. I don’t think s/he was saying that we “deserve” it, but rather that, based on US actions in the world, we should not be surprised at being a target. If it is international (which I tend to doubt), there is some truth to that. JWL’s timing and obsessiveness are different matters.

  83. beltane says:

    @Todd: Calm professionalsim=scary liberal in the mind of the average wingnut who expects nothing less than pant-shitting and empty words of bravado from their elected leaders.

  84. weaselone says:


    It only takes one person who thinks that way, not an entire city. As others have noted Boston is a huge college town and the Marathon is an international event. There were likely numerous other men who looked stereotypically Middle Eastern, but who were not targeted for additional questioning because nobody else thought they looked suspicious running away from the explosions.

  85. Dolly Llama says:

    @artem1s: I don’t mean to speak for someone else, but I took that comment to mean “They should have waterboarded him and given him the needle instead of giving him a life sentence and letting his co-conspirators walk.”

  86. Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    BREAKING: Westboro Baptist Church to picket funerals of those dead by Boston Bombs! GOD SENT THE BOMBS IN FURY OVER FAG MARRIAGE! #PraiseGod

    @raven: As a working theory, I’ve heard less plausible and less offensive theories over the last 24 hours than that.

    My favorite so far was the one that started “So it’s got to be a black guy” and went downhill from there.

  87. Todd says:


    Calm professionalsim=scary liberal in the mind of the average wingnut who expects nothing less than pant-shitting and empty words of bravado from their elected leaders.

    They love them a squinty, steely gaze and big words like John Wayne that “there will be vengeance”.

    All that bravado makes spinning from normally manageable crisis to crisis more palatable.

    The characters of their beloved (and soon to be aged out) Western extravaganzas on AMC on a Saturday morning are their preferred models.

  88. ericblair says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I don’t think s/he was saying that we “deserve” it, but rather that, based on US actions in the world, we should not be surprised at being a target.

    Yeah, okay, but I can’t think of a anybody who was “surprised” that the US could possibly be a target for terrorists. And if it turns out to be domestic rightwing nutcases that set off these bombs, what would these “US actions in the world” be that provoked the attack? Abortion rights? No prayer in schools? Gubmit comin ta getcher gunz? Higher taxes on millionaires?

  89. Suffern ACE says:

    @beltane: our msm loves them some pants shitting. Patrick will be poo pooed for being too distant and professorial, lecturing his citizens.

  90. Omnes Omnibus says:

    @raven: Yeah, that’s why I mentioned JWL’s timing. I didn’t think the original comment was that bad, nor did I have any issue your suggestion that this was not the time. The subsequent inability to let it rest on JWL’s part was, shall we say, interesting.

  91. Todd says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    our msm loves them some pants shitting. Patrick will be poo pooed for being too distant and professorial, lecturing his citizens.

    How dare him treat his constituents like adults. He should fall to pieces, shit his pants onstage and issue a pulsing red terror alert.

    Or maybe an orange one, since the event already happened…

  92. raven says:

    Scroll on cnn says they are looking for a “dark skinned” man who tried to get in a restricted area 5 minutes before the blast. 1 2 3 freakout!!!!!!!

  93. Violet says:

    Gawd, it’s totally disaster pr0n on the morning news. Got up, turned on the TV to check the latest and there’s Matt Lauer soberly intoning, “I have stood at the finish line of the Boston marathon many times.” Yeah? So what, jackass. So have lots of people, plenty of them more times than you.

    Then they show lots and lots of disaster pr0n photos, just in case you didn’t get your fill yesterday…last night…online.

    There is nothing to report. No actual NEWS, so it’s hours and hours of speculation, personal stories and bomb p0rn.

  94. Birthmarker says:

    @beltane: I had neighbors who made insane comments about the OKC bombing. The bomber never thought such a big deal would be made about it, and that he had probably just gotten fed up with govt overreach. Who could blame him?

    Oh, and guess who ultimately signed these people’s paychecks?(As govt contractors)

  95. Omnes Omnibus says:

    @ericblair: I am not the one making the argument. I was referring solely to a specific kerfuffle in a thread yesterday.

    Personally, I think it likely to be domestic. And I have no idea what motivated it.

  96. Todd says:


    Your tv didn’t come with one of them OFF switches?

    God help me, am still in the tire shop. The Today show is on with MILFs talking about how to talk to your kids about these events.

    I didn’t bring headphones, and quit smoking years ago…

  97. beltane says:

    @Todd: Close your eyes and silently do the “Ohm” chant. Either that or you can (also silently) mock the hairdos these witless MILFs are wearing.

  98. the Conster says:

    I drove into work this morning, at the Hancock Tower which is at ground zero. John Hancock insurance still sponsors the race but no longer owns the building where the finish line used to be, which is open for business today. I guess the media did a good job of making sure everyone thinks you can’t get anywhere near Copley Square, but I sailed in from the west and by the time I got to Copley, I was llke the only car for three blocks and kept thinking I had missed the barricade and they were going to start firing on me. Instead, it’s just a media zoo with all of these bubbleheads standing around checking their makeup and lighting, with a backdrop of a fuck ton of large black SUVs, gray unmarked cars,motorcycle cops and milling around foreigners in marathon jackets. Heard every language there is spoken in a three block walk from my garage. I have a birds eye view of the blast site from the 53rd floor. It’s eerily empty and quiet in the early morning sun.

  99. aimai says:

    @Suffern ACE:
    Yeah, but here in MA we love it. There’s such a huge disconnect between the national media and the blood lust and cable porn “style” that they admire–Chris Christie when he’s got nothing better to do–and what the people in a given state actually want in their governors. Whatever our political leanings I think we are all pleased to have someone calm–someone who doesn’t even have enough hair to catch on fire.

  100. ericblair says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I am not the one making the argument. I was referring solely to a specific kerfuffle in a thread yesterday.

    Understood. I got the impression it was the dR0Nz crowd who were lecturing us about whirlwind reaping. Also, anyone who thinks that anyone was surprised that the US was a target for terrorism must have been teleported into an alternate parallel universe for the last decade or so.

  101. Davis X. Machina says:


    Close your eyes and silently do the “Ohm” chant

    For those unfamiliar, you say “P=IE, E=IR” over and over….

  102. Cacti says:

    About that Saudi national, I hope Boston law enforcement takes care not to have another Charles Stuart episode.

  103. quannlace says:

    All of those hours to fill, and all of those people who don’t know jack-sh*t, more than willing to opine.

    And ask witness’s ridiculous questions. “Did you hear the explosion? Were you scared?’
    Last night an ER doc had a short Q&A outside one of the hospitals, and I swear to god one of the first questions asked ‘Did any of your patients say they heard the explosion?’

    As to all this pointless repatition, remember, after JFK Jr.s death, on the day of his private funeral on a boat out at sea, CNN is the station that had a wavery, long distance shot of the boat on their screen. All day long.
    I remember after 9/11, people finally were begging the 24 news stations to stop showing the collapsing towers on a continuous loop.

  104. peach flavored shampoo says:

    Scroll on cnn says they are looking for a “dark skinned” man who tried to get in a restricted area 5 minutes before the blast. 1 2 3 freakout!!!!!!!

    “dark-skinned” could be anything thing from a Ethiopian prince to John Boehner. Good luck with that APB. I suspect they’re about to get about 5000 calls from every Pam Gellar acolyte in the Eastern Time Zone reporting everyone from their gardner to their school principal.

  105. Davis X. Machina says:

    Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

    “MFA admission will be free today. We hope the Museum will be a place of respite for our community.”

    “The Museum’s galleries and special exhibitions will be open. Drop-in programs, including art-making activities, tours, and story hours for families and children, will also be available.”

  106. kindness says:

    I believe it would be wrong to speculate that Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh placed the bombs hoping to start the next civil war.

    Evidence? What are you talking about? Glenn and Rush never need evidence.

  107. MomSense says:

    We don’t know enough to speculate as to who did this. It seems like the wise thing to do is for all of us to care for our emotions and for the people who were harmed. By the time we find out who did this, maybe we will be in a better place to make decisions about what to do.

    People acted magnificently yesterday–the runners, the volunteers, the first responders, the officials, the spectators. There was so much beautiful in response to the violence. The people who were injured (in some cases horrifically) and the families of those killed are going to need a lot of support. I want to focus on being a help.

  108. gelfling545 says:

    @Aimai: I read Proust in French while in college & found his work fascinating. I tried the English translation while back & found it had a very different “feel”. Same thing happened with the first Harry Potter which I first read in English, then read in French to see if any of my students could handle it. (I was able to use a few paragraphs, but not the novel) Once again, a very different “feel”. From this I learned that translation is very difficult indeed, very conditioned by cultural context.

  109. shortstop says:


    And if it turns out to be domestic rightwing nutcases that set off these bombs, what would these “US actions in the world” be that provoked the attack? … Higher taxes on millionaires?

    Close. Nonexistent, fictional, fantastical, mythological (okay, okay, you get it) “higher taxes” being paid by the low-earning, slack-jawed, eyes-too-close-together people who may turn out to have done this. Sic semper tyrannis! I heard that at a Tea Party meeting and I think it means something about not bowing down to black people!

  110. Todd says:

    How long does it take to rotate, balance, replace two tires and one valve and check alignment? Geez…

  111. beltane says:

    The chief of trauma surgery at Massachusetts General says most injuries were caused by consistently sized “nail-like” fragments originating in the bomb.

  112. gelfling545 says:

    @Todd: I had to tell my car dealership that I would go elsewhere for maintenance services if I was subjected to the 700 Club again i their waiting area.

  113. shortstop says:

    If I could walk through the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston (strum, strum), first I’d go to the room where they keep the Cezanne…

    I’m told the Emancipation Day parade is going on today as planned in DC. Deliver us from paranoia, which is not my usual state (honestly!), but I can see a certain kind of person thinking that hitting that would be a great one-two punch.

  114. Cassidy says:

    @ericblair: The anti-tax thing is just onepart of the anti-gov’t folk. Since gov’t is illegal/ unethical/ immoral/ whatever, it has no right to take my money and/ or property because I earned that. I doubt you’ll find anyonerunning around with “Well, gov’t is cool, I just don’t like taxes” as an extremist credo.

  115. Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    I’m patiently waiting for the network blather to stop, which I figure will take at least three to four days. I’ve decided to distract myself by upgrading the drives in one of our servers and installing the latest Fedora (18). Having done the upgrade and install, I really wish I could meet the people who ‘upgraded’ Anaconda, the Fedora installer, because I want to beat them like baby seals.

    I used to be able to install everything but php (I use a custom compilation for our web server and forums) but now I can only choose a few options and have to install everything else from within Fedora. Anaconda is a nice app now but not a serious installer.

    What was once easy is now a real pain in the ass. Idiots.

  116. WereBear says:

    @liberal: In my opinion, that was because Susan Smith had suffered child sexual abuse. Her emotional growth had been stunted. She could not fake the proper emotions at the proper times.

    Stuart was a practiced sociopath. He was good at at.

  117. BobS says:

    @Xenos: My drive home from work takes me past the James Nichols farm, where his brother Terry and Tim McVeigh were thought to have worked on their bomb-making skills, and where the fleet of official looking vehicles remained long after the Oklahoma City bombing. It’s a stretch of road with signs prominently displayed supporting Ron Paul for president (still), grieving over the November election result (still), and advertising upcoming Tea Party meetings. My favorite was one painted on the roof of a ramshackle shed (sadly no longer standing) warning that violators of the airspace over the property would be shot at. My first exposure to Alex Jones was about 10 years ago when somebody in the area was taking his show off the shortwave band and rebroadcasting it on a vacant FM channel for a few hours a day- it disappeared about as suddenly as it appeared without any explanation.
    I’d be a little surprised if one or more government agency didn’t have an extra set of ears pointed in that direction

  118. Paul in KY says:

    No C-4, probably black powder & no suicider doing it, also no car either. To me, hallmarks of a McVeigh/Rudolph style attack.

    Converely, it did go off after all the elite (world class) athletes (including those who run for Arab nations) had already finished.

  119. Cermet says:

    @Todd: If you are nice, patient and don’t complain, hours … . The loud ones get taken care of first. The ‘rack*’ amateurs in complaining like me, also tend to get their tires worked on last … .

    Sorry, but needed to add this for the low IQ boys here.

  120. Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    “Thank you!” to whoever suggested the Otter Box device case. My lovely wife gifted me with a Kindle Fire HD for my birthday and I ordered an Otter Box right away. Because I’m often clumsy it already paid for itself.

  121. markmac says:

    The signs point to a right-wing nut (s). Patriots day, Waco, OKC. Plus, Muslim group usually claim responsibility by now

  122. Paul in KY says:

    @liberal: She was a bad liar, when you really started to look at her demeanor, etc.

    Thank God she was a bad one & they didn’t reilroad some innocent dude.

  123. Dave says:

    @Paul in KY:

    Converely, it did go off after all the elite (world class) athletes (including those who run for Arab nations) had already finished.

    It may or may not matter, but when I was at the Marathon a long, long time ago the security around the finish was tighter when the elites finished, and then would loosen up as the regular runners began to come in later in the day. It’s possible whomever did this couldn’t get into the area to do what they wanted when the top runners were there.

  124. Mnemosyne says:


    I had NPR on the radio while I was driving last night (I know, I know) and they interviewed the chief of surgery at Harvard, who hauled ass down to Beth Israel hospital to volunteer as soon as he heard about the bombing. He was full of praise for the first responders at the scene and said they probably saved a lot of lives with their triage methods and on-scene treatment that got people stable enough to be transported.

  125. beltane says:

    @Mnemosyne: One silver lining with regards to the bombing is that it took place in the vicinity of some of the finest hospitals on the planet.

  126. Mnemosyne says:


    And if it turns out to be domestic rightwing nutcases that set off these bombs, what would these “US actions in the world” be that provoked the attack? Abortion rights? No prayer in schools? Gubmit comin ta getcher gunz? Higher taxes on millionaires?

    That was my issue with it, too. I suppose that if it does turn out to be someone who’s pissed off about Afghanistan/Pakistan and/or Iraq, we can start talking about roosting chickens from our actions overseas, but if it was domestic, I’m not sure exactly what “lesson” we’re supposed to take from it. It’s our own fault because we didn’t let the right wing have their way?

  127. Violet says:

    @raven: Yes, it has an off button. And I used it. I can rewind my TV, which is what I did when I turned it on. Watched the opening of the Today Show to see if they’d mention any actual news (they didn’t), where I saw Matt Lauer intoning his personal relationship with the Boston Marathon, then FF’d through the rest of it, where it was obvious they were doing pretty much nothing but showing old photos and video of it. Was checking for any updates, but didn’t seem to be any until the news conference. Then I turned it off.

  128. Mnemosyne says:


    I’m hoping one of the reasons BPD and the FBI are being so tight-lipped about leads and suspects is that they don’t want to accidentally ruin another innocent guy’s life with false accusations. I may be giving them too much credit, though.

  129. Face says:

    Wow, the media wont drop the Saudi Guy Angle.

    Note to all Browns: Stay away from any public event for the next few months. Should something go wrong, expect to be fingered, fingerprinted, interrogated, and then your name forever-wrongly Google-linked to said disaster.

    Witchhunts and profiling, how do they fucking work?

  130. Cassidy says:

    @Face: Because the most likely alternative is white, Christian, Conservative extremist. Can’t go making those people mad. They might boycott you and say mean things on FOX news.

  131. Keith G says:


    I had NPR on the radio while I was driving last night (I know, I know)

    -My emphasis-

    Oh come on, don’t fall victim to some of the CW casually tossed about here. NPR has one of the best news shops available. I think that their commentary efforts got stunted a decade or so ago and has become a parody of itself, but on the whole they have the best broadcast reporting around.

  132. Schlemizel says:


    Yes, I hope they have learned from past experience


    If it turns out to be domestic it will be a ‘false-flag’ op by Obama & his Kenyan usurper patrol to do whatever evil the wingnuts suspect he really wants to do. They still talk that way about OK City.

  133. AxelFoley says:


    The Today show is on with MILFs talking about how to talk to your kids about these events.

    LOL, I’m sorry, but I had to laugh at this line. LOLOLOLOLOL

  134. Mnemosyne says:

    @Keith G:

    I have NPR on my tuner buttons and at least half the time when they’re interviewing someone, I end up cursing at the radio and changing the channel. So, no, I’m going by my own personal experience of listening to idiot reporters asking stupid questions on NPR.

  135. Dave says:

    @Robert Sneddon:

    Boston is home to multiple Level I trauma centers, including three Level I pediatric trauma centers. If such a tragedy had to occur, the fact it happened in Boston likely saved numerous lives.

  136. beltane says:

    @Robert Sneddon: Back in the 1980s Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn was where doctors were trained in treating gunshot wounds. I wonder if this has changed given the dramatic decline in the violent crime rate.

  137. Davis X. Machina says:

    @beltane: In the early 80’s when I lived in Atlanta, the military was rotating people through Grady Memorial for maintaining currency.

  138. Cassidy says:

    @Keith G: Nope. If it’s domestic terrorism, and not the brown muslim looking Saudi citizen the cable news is playing on a loop, the most logical suspect(s) would be of the white, death cult, conservative set.

    Just FYI, Boston, like every other major mettropolis, has run drills very regularly since 9/11 to handle mass casualty events.

  139. Comrade Jake says:

    Regarding the whole “Obama didn’t say terror!” dustup, I give you wingnut extraordinaire, Cheri Jacobus, responding to Josh Marshall on twitter:

    Obama can’t admit it’s terrorism because then he’d have to admit his BFF Bill Ayers of the Weather Underground is a terrorist

    Dumb as rocks.

  140. beltane says:

    @Comrade Jake: Don’t be too hard on her. People like Cheri Jacobs are nothing more than the unfortunate consequence of a stupid woman copulating with a stupid man, sort of like when two yappy dogs are bred together you’ll get a whole litter of yappy puppies.

  141. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    @beltane: In the bad old days, Belfast was considered the best city in the world to have a heart attack.

    And, thanks to the “Ulster Fry,” one of the best places to become vulnerable to a heart attack.

    Combination of superb ambulance service, the Royal Victoria Hospital, and Frank Pantridge.

    The Royal Victoria is a superb hospital. Sadly, it became so excellent in trauma because of the troubles.

    Anyway, speculation on this bombing. Small, so possibly lone wolf: but that doesn’t mean it’s a wingnut, as there have been lone wolf mooslim wannabe bombers as well. Ratio of wounded to dead is high, possibly because of nails/ball bearings increasing shrapnel radius. I’m leaning towards a wingnut, as the lone wolf mooslim bombers tend to f**k up, but it’s marginal. We’ll have to wait for the forsenics and surveillance footage to give clues.

  142. beltane says:

    The fact that no one is claiming responsibility and that law enforcement doesn’t seem to have a good feel as to who is responsible is making me inclined to believe a RealAmericanPatriot is responsible. So no, this isn’t terrorism.

  143. pseudonymous in nc says:

    The closest M.O. from my perspective is that of the IRA. Yeah, vicious irony, given the location, but now’s not the time to talk about that.

  144. shortstop says:

    Other than when I lived in London back in the day and the IRA regularly tagged stuff as theirs, I don’t have much of a feel for who claims what…or what it means when they don’t. Is it really that telling that no one has said this is their work? I have the (perhaps mistaken) impression that some of these crimes get claimed, some don’t and there’s no real pattern to any of that.

  145. Keith G says:

    @MikeJ: I think it’s more than that. They consistently cover topics that are missed/ignored by others. They bother to go into detail. In many areas, their reporting has made an important difference.

  146. Elie says:


    I agree… this just seems very “homegrown” from my superficial perch. Could be a crazee homegrown single actor or one of the supremacist groups. It feels really personal and individual rather than political, but that is just my gut and not a prediction..

  147. WereBear says:

    @shortstop: I have the (perhaps mistaken) impression that some of these crimes get claimed, some don’t and there’s no real pattern to any of that.

    According to this Princeton study, religious motivations increase the likelihood of a terrorism group staying quiet. Politically motivated groups, especially when the strike is seen as “strong” or “successful” are more likely to claim it.

  148. Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Cassidy: Claiming responsibility makes sense if the group or individual wants to demonstrate their power/ability or if the nature of the act relates to a specific goal of the actor. With the second point, the IRA took credit for blowing up soldier’s pubs because without that, the act would lack meaning; with it, they were saying, “if you stay keep troops in our country, we can and will kill them anywhere we find them.”

    ETA: If the goal is simply to be disruptive, claiming credit is unnecessary and probably counterproductive.

  149. Lurking Canadian says:

    @Mnemosyne: This.

    Out of many of the elements of post 9/11 coverage that infuriated me was the construction, “If we [do/stop doing] X, it means the terrorists have won”. The morality of government policy is not a function of the amount of violence its opponents are willing to use. We should do X if X is the right thing to do, and stop doing X if X is the wrong thing to do.

    We should not let savages dictate to our consciences in either direction.

  150. What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us? says:

    @Mnemosyne: Good gawd are their interviews awful, especially of Republican politicians. It’s like they’re bending over backwards to not point out that their talking points are false, contradictory or at best less-than-half truths. Calling them softball interviews is an insult to softballs – they’re more like nerf-ball interviews.

  151. Keith G says:

    @Cassidy: Most broadcast news has been dumbed down toward terminal myopia. With little or no budget allocated for investigative efforts, what is left is feasting on what few morsels of public knowledge is stumbled upon.

    The fact that the police were questioning an individual was/is the only concrete story in the “Who did this?” category. Of course it is going to be flogged to pieces by news editors who are paid to get something on the air or over the net.

    We don’t know why the original suspicion was raised. It might have been perceived ethnicity. It may not have been. (I became the focus of unwanted attention when someone thought that my photographic efforts were suspicious and a call to police was made)

    Anyway, you were stating that the news-folks saw an advantage in reporting a suspect being (maybe) Arabic as opposed to Anglo. I saw no such indication, so I wondered about trolling.

  152. Cassidy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: If you’re goal is to pick a fight, which a lot of these extremists grops want, then staying quiet makes sense. Same if you’re planning other strikes. But it’s all navel gazing.

    My personal opinion is lone nutjob, with Conservative leanings. The RW extremists groups have enough people who know how to make decent bombs and access to high grade explosives. They consider themselves “soldiers”. If an organized group was involved, I think this would have been significantly worse.

  153. Cassidy says:

    @Keith G: I don’t think it’s so much an “advantage” but more that they are very uncomfortable talking about white, domestic terrorism that is politically motivated considering that it almost all leans conservative and christian in the modern era.

    Of course, the sycophants in our media are going to breathlessly cover anything that includes a possible brown and muslim connection; that’s a given. Part of that is a distinct fear that they’ll have to cover the possibility that it is white and domestic and they know how those people respond to criticism.

  154. Villago Delenda Est says:


    This analysis makes sense to me. Lone nutjob with wingtard sympathies is the most likely scenario, but even likely scenarios can be total dead ends.

    We’ll have to let the professionals do their jobs, which takes some time, longer than one 24 hour news cycle, longer than the attention spans of such luminaries as Leslie Blitzer, Scott Pelley, and Brian Williams.

  155. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    The fact that no one is claiming responsibility and that law enforcement doesn’t seem to have a good feel as to who is responsible is making me inclined to believe a RealAmericanPatriot is responsible.

    AQ took a long time before claiming 9/11 as their work. As others have noted, religious nutjobs believe Gawd/Alllaah/Odin/FSM is seeing their actions, so are not as motivated to claim an incident publicly as a secular terrorist group. So the silence so far isn’t indicative either way as to whether the wingnut(s) involved are of the redneck or foreheads-on-carpets variety.

  156. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    Other than when I lived in London back in the day and the IRA regularly tagged stuff as theirs, I don’t have much of a feel for who claims what…or what it means when they don’t. Is it really that telling that no one has said this is their work?

    The paper Werebear linked to indicates only ~15% of incidents between 1998-2004 were claimed. That is surprisingly low, as I’d have thought that as the point of terrorism is to influence political choices, that saying “We are X, we did this because of Y, and our aim is to make Z happen.” Like the IRA or ETA.

    Evidently, bad guys only monologue in movies. In real life, they rarely even write a press release.

  157. Eric U. says:

    @beltane: I am worried that we are far too sensitive about the delicate feelings of the republicans. We have plenty of evidence to support the idea that they bear watching, but it still seems like DHS and the police still worry a lot more about the ELF and hippies making puppets.

  158. Annamal says:

    Why isn’t the 2011 attempted bombing in Spokane getting more play?

    I mean it was a bomb full of nails(and rat poison which thankfully doesn’t seem to have been the case in Boston), aimed at a large public event on a politically sensitive day.

    I know it’s not the same people (since the dude who did Spokane is in jail) but there’s enough similarities to make me think.

  159. Cassidy says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    luminaries as Leslie Blitzer, Scott Pelley, and Brian Williams

    People keep committing wanton violence in the wrong places. If assholes are going to do shitty things, at least attempt to make the world a better place.

  160. SiubhanDuinne says:

    @cvstoner: Both Cheney and Rumsfeld are going to be in Atlanta in a couple of weeks as participants in the 16th annual Former Secretaries of Defense Roundtable. I used to go to all those “Former Secretaries of … ” things, but at this point I wouldn’t trust myself not to get violent. Or not to throw up. So I think I’ll give it a great big old miss.

  161. Cassidy says:

    @Eric U.: It’s just not publicized. Those guys are watched, but they’re very hard to infiltrate and exist within very close lipped circles.

    @Annamal: I’m guessing it’s still under investigation.

  162. shortstop says:

    @Herbal Infusion Bagger:

    That is surprisingly low, as I’d have thought that as the point of terrorism is to influence political choices, that saying “We are X, we did this because of Y, and our aim is to make Z happen.” Like the IRA or ETA.

    No doubt much psychological study has been done on the sniper mindset: the act itself would seem to be indicative of the simultaneously cowardly and bullying type. I’m interested now; when I get a little more time this week, I’m going to nose around for more info.

  163. Keith G says:

    @Annamal: I am rather confident that this will be a focus of the professionals* especially if they are able to detect significant similarities in design and construction.

    *Whether or not the regular media latch right away or not. As I typed earlier, most of the “news” bureaus are followers and not leaders.

  164. LanceThruster says:

    “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of ‘disaster,’ I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.” — Mister Rogers

  165. gelfling545 says:

    @raven: I wonder what they say when anything bad happens to one of their members? Probably that they didn’t pray hard enough, or correctly or something.

  166. Woodrowfan says:


    Sorry, I have no strong opinions on who did this, but it didn’t seem right that someone was going all tinfoil and yelling “sheeple.” Carry on with your reasoned discussion.

  167. Trollhattan says:

    @Keith G:

    Spokane was my first thought, yesterday, as the outcome would have been quite similar had that bomb not been found. ABC reports yesterday’s were both pressure cookers filled with shrapnel and stowed in duffle bags.

    The two bombs that ripped through the crowds at the Boston Marathon, killing three people and wounding more than 170, were fashioned out of pressure cookers and packed with shards of metal, nails and ball bearings, a person briefed on the investigation said Tuesday.


  168. Mnemosyne says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Death toll in Aurora: 12

    Death toll in Newtown: 26

    Death toll in Boston: 3

    So much for the “if we restrict guns, people will use other methods!” idea. It still appears to be much easier to kill a whole lot of people with guns than with other methods, at least in the US.

  169. Mnemosyne says:


    There’s also the possibility of group X making it look like group Y did it to get a particular response from group Z.

    I would be interested to see any documented cases that you have of Group X planning and carrying out an attack to make Group Y look bad.

    There are obviously documented cases of Group X (the Spanish government) trying to claim that Group Y (the ETA) was responsible for something that Group Z (al-Qaeda) did so as to make themselves (Group X) look better, but that’s not the same thing as an actual false-flag operation that you’re claiming.

    The odds that the US government planned and executed this bombing to make right-wing extremist groups look bad are, shall we say, very, very small, no matter what Lew Rockwell and Alex Jones tell you.

  170. LanceThruster says:


    I was thinking more along the lines of realpolitik combinations. At this point, there’s little to go on and it’s too soon to rule out much.

  171. LanceThruster says:


    It doesn’t have to be the gubmint. There’s examples to be had of the concept throughout history, the Reichstag fire being an easy one to reference. Again, not much for an outsider to go on currently.

    It’s remarkable to see you with a civil tongue in your head for a change. Get tired of spewing expletives?

  172. Mnemosyne says:


    There’s examples to be had of the concept throughout history, the Reichstag fire being an easy one to reference.

    The Reichstag fire was started by a crazy Dutch communist, and exploited by the Nazis. All conspiracy theories to the contrary of the Nazis having started it themselves have been proven incorrect. Any other examples?

    It’s remarkable to see you with a civil tongue in your head for a change. Get tired of spewing expletives?

    No, I’ve just realized that you have definitively proven something I’ve always believed about conspiracy theorists: you find your theories comforting, because they eliminate random violence and evil from the world. After all, if 9/11 was all a big government conspiracy that ran like clockwork and not a giant government fuck-up, then that means that someone is in charge and is running things. Sure, it’s an evil someone, but at least it means that someone is at the wheel and we’re not all just randomly roaming through life.

    So your first thought yesterday was, “Who benefits?” because it’s more comforting to believe that someone high up is manipulating events than it is to believe that assholes do evil shit for their own reasons and some people are unlucky enough to be caught up in that shit.

  173. Another Halocene Human says:

    @WereBear: Charles Stuart gave off no such easy clues.

    Bullshit. Stuart fingered somebody he knew in the lineup after saying it was a stranger who did it. Kaboom.

    He had a totally non-secret financial motive for the killing as well. (Contra the media, I believe the Boston cops were suspicious of him the whole time, but that didn’t stop them from pulling their “find a black man, any black man” routine in Jamaica Plain, probably the most outrageous aspect of the case.) And it took pressure from the victim’s distraught brother to really get the cops focused back on Stuart where the pressure should have been all along.

  174. Another Halocene Human says:

    @Citizen_X: We already did. It’s called the Downeaster!

    Well, actually Maine led the charge, but Massachusetts assisted.

    Not only are NH’s previously impenetrable car-centric, libertarian defenses breached daily by (shudder) Amtrak, we’re corrupting their preshus yout.

    UNH students are one of the biggest single groups riding the train.

    Mass is planning a second invasion, a Boston to Concord, NH commuter line.


  175. El Cid says:

    @Mnemosyne: Also, it means that if someone in the government was plotting to kill you on 9/11, your life was much, much more important than it would seem if that government cared so little about you that it would incompetently allow such a horror to occur.

    If 9/11 was an inside job, and you did on 9/11, you were an important human worthy of being an enemy; if 9/11 wasn’t an inside job, you weren’t even worthy of them killing you, such matters just don’t rise to their attention.

    Being the target of a conspiracy makes you important. Being the victim of an accident or uncaring government whose attentions are elsewhere makes you a statistic.

  176. johnny aquitard says:


    It’s tough, because we were manipulated after 9/11, with language. No one can undo the damage that was done to credibility.

    This is no doubt why Obama is always so hesitant with the word ‘terror’.

    Naturally, careful, cool leadership in a crisis is exactly what the wingnuts don’t want. They want fear and lots of it. It’s the raw material with which they can manipulate the public. It’s always worked for them, their whole electory strategy has been based on it for decades — fear of blahs, teh gay, illegals, wimmins, atheists, USSR, China, Mooslims. Fear of the Other. Fear of choice. Fear of modern life. Ironically, what they fear is freedom.

    I think they are making this thing with Obama not saying ‘terror’ a big thing because it serves several narratives. One, they get to attack him as soft on terror because if he didn’t say the, then obviously he’s doing nothing to protect us. Two, if they can make him say ‘terror’, they will repeat the vid of it endlessly as they tell everyone to Be Afraid. Three, they want to rehabilitate the Bush failure of 9/11, and getting Obama to say ‘terror attack’ is key. They will make it exactly the same thing, so Bush is OK because he didn’t do any thing Obama did and you libs have no right to say anything about Bush, because BOSTON!.

    These people love terrorism. It works for them, gives them power over people and excuses to do the things to other people they wanted to do all along.

  177. Another Halocene Human says:

    @Davis X. Machina: Damn, Dukakis hasn’t been governor in a montha. Kid you not, I went to a small talk over ten years ago and he was bemoaning the fact that some yobs recognized him on the Orange Line train and one teenager elbows the other and said, “Yeah, you’re right: That’s Mayor Ray Flynn.”

  178. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:


    No doubt much psychological study has been done on the sniper mindset: the act itself would seem to be indicative of the simultaneously cowardly and bullying type.

    There’s also Just Weird Shit That People Believe. For instance, Aum Shinrikyo doing the sarin attack in the Tokyo Underground to precipitate ‘Ragnarok,’ an apocalypse where Aum would survive because of their spiritual purity.

    The timing of the sarin was the Aum was facing legal suits and thought that precipitating an attack would take the heat off because….I don’t know. It doesn’t make sense. But in the case of the sarin attack, Aum denied involvement afterwards.

  179. Annamal says:

    @Keith G:

    Yeah, I am 100% sure that the professionals are at least exploring this but I’m suprised no enterprising soul from the media has noticed the similarities and run with them (it’s not like they haven’t run with everything else).

    I mean Muslim extreme terrorism (even the wacky trying to blow up a bridge variety) has tended to target structures or planes (maybe with the exception of those dudes trying to smuggle in a nuke from Cananda for 2000 new years)but right wing extreme (both christian and not explicitly christian) terrorism has targeted events(it has of course also targeted structures).

  180. LanceThruster says:


    Historians disagree as to whether Van der Lubbe was the sole culprit of the fire, despite Nuremberg testimony and other circumstantial evidence suggesting that he did not act alone. Some historians (especially Bahar and Kugel) believe that he was an unwitting pawn of the Nazis, who manipulated him to create the event, though controversy about this exists too. Much difficulty is created by the fact that substantial amounts of evidence for all theories was later found to be manufactured by the Soviet Union or secret police after the event.

    Your own source offer this but I’ll concede the point re: the Reichstag fire. Thanks for the info.

    I’ll then cite the Lavon Affair – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lavon_Affair

    In the previous thread I was sharing my not infrequent gut reaction. As far as I am concerned, 9/11 did change everything, but not in the way that is usually meant.

    I am not part of the problem. In a recent PBS Frontline, they did a program about mass school killings averted and what the common thread was. It was kids seeing something off and having adults that were approachable to inform.

    Two weeks ago I found scribbled notes about a ‘dirty bomb’ on a steno pad left in the supply closet. I thought it was weird and probably nothing but let the campus DPS know about it. I wanted someone in authority to determine it wasnothing. It turned out to be some sort of cheater code for extra points in World of Warcraft.

    When I share that something seems odd to me, it’s an opportunity for other’s to point out that said irregularities are not what they seem because of A, B, or C.

    If I get a “Go fuck yourself” or “Derp” or whatever, I consider the source and move on. No big deal. I am neither a troll nor worried about respect from people who I have none for either.

    Other than that, thanks for the Reichstag details.

  181. LanceThruster says:

    And for a WWII operation that was corroborated —


    This provocation was the best-known of several actions in Operation Himmler, a series of unconventional operations undertaken by the SS in order to serve specific propaganda goals of Nazi Germany at the outbreak of the war. It was intended to create the appearance of Polish aggression against Germany in order to justify the subsequent invasion of Poland.

  182. LanceThruster says:


    No, I’ve just realized that you have definitively proven something I’ve always believed about conspiracy theorists: you find your theories comforting, because they eliminate random violence and evil from the world.

    That’s maybe one of your most clueless utterences I’ve seen. Total misuse of the concept of “proven” (don’t hurt yourself patting yourself on the back).

    I do not find being lied to comforting in the least. It’s hard to glean what is true and what is spin or fabrication. 9/11 was not random violence and the official version was itself a conspiracy theory.

    I did not have strong feeling about OKC other than it was horrible (the photo of little Bailey Almond was heartwrenching). The discrepancy of the 3rd suspect that so many witnessed reported and the blast damage being inconsistent with a fuel oil bomb was also troubling.

    see: http://100777.com/node/106

    Brigadier General Benton K. Partin, U. S. Air Force, retired, has 25 years experience in explosives and ballistic weapons design and testing. General Partin also served as the Commander of the Air Force Armament Technology Laboratory.

    Partin has this to say:

    “When I first saw the picture of the truck bomb’s asymmetrical damage to the Federal building in Oklahoma, my immediate reaction was that the pattern of damage would have been technically impossible without supplementary demolition charges at some of the reinforced concrete bases inside the building, a standard demolition technique.

    “For a simplistic blast truck bomb, of the size and composition reported, to be able to reach out on the order of 60 feet and collapse a reinforced column base the size of column A7 is beyond credulity.”

    General Partin further explained that; “The total incompatibility with a single truck bomb lies in the fact that either some columns collapsed that should not have collapsed or some of the columns are still standing that should of collapsed and did not.”

    “Reinforced concrete targets in large buildings are hard targets to blast. I know of no way possible to reproduce the apparent building damage through simply a truck bomb effort.”

    “It is easy to determine whether a column was failed by contact demolition charges or by blast loading (such as a truck bomb),” Partin wrote in his letter to Congress. “It is also easy to cover up crucial evidence as was apparently done in Waco. I understand that the building is to be demolished by May 23rd or 24th. Why the rush to destroy the evidence?”

    He concludes; “This is a massive cover-up of immense proportions.”

    More troubling details in the link.

    Do I have answers or “the Truth?” Far from it, but I also have a healthy skepticism of claims when credible people are willing to put their reputations on the line and swim against the tide.

    OKC is heavy in the news now as they explain that this was the advent of coordinated counterterrorism efforts in both prevention and investigation. I am not an uninterested bystander. I attended a Michael Chertoff lecture where I asked him how we could trust their credibility when there were so many people erroneously on the “No-fly list.” He dismissed the question with hand waving. He said, it’s not that many, our people are honest and competent, and don’t worry, we’re getting new toys and bigger budgets to do an even better job protecting you.

    Pardon me while I gag.

  183. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:


    @LanceThruster: “For a simplistic blast truck bomb, of the size and composition reported, to be able to reach out on the order of 60 feet and collapse a reinforced column base the size of column A7 is beyond credulity.”

    But it wasn’t 60 feet away from a structural column. It was 20 feet away. The column Gen. Partin is referring to failed in shear mode from shear stresses from the blast and from load restribution from Column B20 shattering, not from explosive shattering. That’s the problem with relying on a guy who’s not a structural engineer for your technical assessment. Additionally, you don’t know how well-built connections between the structural columns and joists are – something which performed OK in a static load may have been built below spec from a dynamic perspective. The overpressure from OKC was maybe 4000 psi, which is more than enough to cause concrete to fail from 20 feet away.

    See: http://www.nist.gov/el/disaste.....ew2002.pdf


    Note the intact bases on columns B16 and B24 in the blast damage slide, which voids Gen. Partin explosive base theory.

    See here for a rather technical analysis of overpressure and concrete beam failure.

  184. LanceThruster says:

    NIST are the ones who said, “Move along, nothing to see here” re: the WTC collapses, no?

  185. LanceThruster says:


    The conclusions of the Eglin Blast Effects Study are compelling and carry stunning implications. With the ETS having significantly less integral strength than the Murrah Building, the EBES conclusions have a built-in margin of error that, if anything, overstate the extent of damage to be expected at the Murrah Building. Moreover, the computations for the Ryder truck bomb also are overly generous. =93Because ANFO is also a low-energy explosive (approximately 30% that of TNT) and due to the inherent inefficiency of eight barrels forming the explosive assembly [according to the government’s estimates], it is doubtful that the device produced blast pressures close to the calculated maximum potential blast pressure, the study asserts. This being the case, it is doubtful that the radius of damage even approached the 42.37 foot range as calculated herein.

    Finally, the EBES concludes:

    Due to these conditions, it is impossible to ascribe the damage that occurred on April 19, 1995 to a single truck bomb containing 4,800 lbs. of ANFO. In fact, the maximum predicted damage to the floor panels of the Murrah Federal Building is equal to approximately 1% of the total floor area of the building. Furthermore, due to the lack of symmetrical damage pattern at the Murrah Building, it would be inconsistent with the results of the ETS test [number] one to state that all of the damage to the Murrah Building is the result of the truck bomb.

    The damage to the Murrah Federal Building is consistent with damage resulting from mechanically coupled devices placed locally within the structure….

    It must be concluded that the damage at the Murrah Federal Building is not the result of the truck bomb itself, but rather due to other factors such as locally placed charges within the building itself…. The procedures used to cause the damage to the Murrah Building are therefore more involved and complex than simply parking a truck and leaving….

    Mike Smith, a civil engineer in Cartersville, Georgia commissioned to review the Eglin Blast Effects Study, states:

    The results of the Blast Effect Test One on the Eglin Test Structure present strong evidence that a single Ammonium Nitrate and Fuel Oil device of approximately 4800 lbs. placed inside a truck could not have caused the damage to the Murrah federal Building experienced on April 19, 1995. Even assuming that the building had structural deficiencies and that the ANFO device was constructed with racing fuel, the air-coupled blast produced from this 4800 lb. device would not have damaged the columns and beams of the Murrah Building enough to produce a catastrophic failure.

    Robert Frias, president of Frias Engineering of Arlington, Texas, after examining the EBES, concluded: The Murrah Building would still be standing and the upper floors would be intact had the truck loaded with explosives been the only culprit. Moreover, Frias, a practicing engineer for over 40 years and a registered engineer in Texas, New Mexico, and Louisiana, stated: “Explosives had to have been placed near, or on, the structural columns inside the building to cause the collapse that occurred to the Murrah Building.”

    Likewise, Alvin Norberg, a licensed professional engineer in Auburn, California with over 50 years of engineering experience on over 5,000 construction projects, writes that,

    Kenneth Gow of Whittier, California, with over one-half century of engineering experience in the aerospace industry, writes in his evaluation of the EBES:
    The Eglin Test Structure report … further reinforces the conclusion that a substantial portion of the Murrah Building damage was by internal explosions.


    I am not endorsing the website link, just that it had the info I needed to ref all in one place.

  186. LanceThruster says:

    And then there’s Cass Sunstein who’s been making the rounds with a new book. Here’s what he thought was needed to deal with 9/11 skeptics —

    “Conspiracy Theories” and government infiltration

    Sunstein co-authored a 2008 paper with Adrian Vermeule, titled “Conspiracy Theories,” dealing with the risks and possible government responses to false conspiracy theories resulting from “cascades” of faulty information within groups that may ultimately lead to violence. In this article they wrote, “The existence of both domestic and foreign conspiracy theories, we suggest, is no trivial matter, posing real risks to the government’s antiterrorism policies, whatever the latter may be.” They go on to propose that, “the best response consists in cognitive infiltration of extremist groups”,[28] where they suggest, among other tactics, “Government agents (and their allies) might enter chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine percolating conspiracy theories by raising doubts about their factual premises, causal logic or implications for political action.”[28] They refer, several times, to groups that promote the view that the US Government was responsible or complicit in the September 11 attacks as “extremist groups.” They also suggest responses: “We can readily imagine a series of possible responses. (1) Government might ban conspiracy theorizing. (2) Government might impose some kind of tax, financial or otherwise, on those who disseminate such theories.”[29]

    Sunstein and Vermeule also analyze the practice of recruiting “nongovernmental officials”; they suggest that “government can supply these independent experts with information and perhaps prod them into action from behind the scenes,” further warning that “too close a connection will be self-defeating if it is exposed.”[28] Sunstein and Vermeule argue that the practice of enlisting non-government officials, “might ensure that credible independent experts offer the rebuttal, rather than government officials themselves. There is a tradeoff between credibility and control, however. The price of credibility is that government cannot be seen to control the independent experts.” This position has been criticized by some commentators,[30][31] who argue that it would violate prohibitions on government propaganda aimed at domestic citizens.[32] Sunstein and Vermeule’s proposed infiltrations have also been met by sharply critical scholarly critiques.[33][34][35]

    from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C.....filtration

  187. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:


    Again, your problem is not understanding the structural engineering. A three-storey model is *not* going to accurately reflect if it doesn’t get the state of a column in compressive or tensile strain correct. After column B20 blew, the bending moment of the would put the outer edges of B16 and B24 into the tensile region. If the tensile load exceeds the tensile strength of the reinforcing steel, then the concrete cracks and provides no resistance to the shear strain from the blast reaching those columns. As phonons travel 5x-10x faster in solids than in air, the rearrangement of tensile and compressive loads affected B16 and B24 before the blast wave hit them. As the NIST paper noted, only 4% of the building was demolished due to the blast alone: 42% collapsed because of the interaction of the blast with the structure. A structural-engineering illiterate model, like the one you cited, is completely useless for evaluation of the blast effects. How do I know its structurally-illiterate?
    Because your article doesn’t mention tensile or compressive once.

    As for air-blast causing failure in reinforced concrete, that’s exactly what the last link discusses.

  188. Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    For a case study in how structural factors, and construction flaws, can potentiate an explosion, see the Ronan Point collapse in the UK, caused by a gas stove explosion.

    After Ronan Point, the UK government amended building codes for such structures to….resistance to 5 psi overpressure.
    So it’s a bit hard to take seriously breathless statements that 70 psi overpressure at 42 feet blast radius couldn’t have caused the collapse at the Murragh building.

    Also, Partin was touting the surface-to-air missile theory for TWA Flight 800, which was conclusively disproven by the NTSB. So yup, he’s a crank.

  189. LanceThruster says:

    Regardless of any other theory Partin subscribes to, condemning the desctruction of evidence from a crime scene seems pretty sensible to me.

    Again, the flack I’ve taken was based on a statement of fact about a gut reaction, which I also qualified. I make no apologies for my suspicions because for the longest time, practically everything my government has told me not to worry about turns out to be cause for concern (we do not torture, we do not spy on American citizens, the terror alerts prior to elections were real, etc., etc.).

    St. Reagan ushered in the era of plausible deniability (Iran-Contra). I saw a lecture by a lawyer from the Cristic Institute about how they had 90% or so of the Iran-Contra story right, but got hammered on the parts they got wrong. Eugene Hausenfus (sp?) being shot down let the cat out of the bag.

    He finished his lecture with the statement, “I’m sorry to disillusion you, but woulld you ratherbe ‘illusioned?'”

    We have a lapdog press and many agents of disinformation from all directions. Helps make it easy to dismiss credible accounts as kooks. Americans are notorious for not knowing what they don’t want to know.

    I think a healthy skepticism helps keep the people in charge honest (if that’s even at all possible). Afterall, as they have told us, if they have nothing to hide, they have nothing to worry about.


    I also think the DC Madam was suicided, and that Bin Laden was already dead ( see: http://911dude.net/Jack_Ryan/ ).

    So sue me.

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!” ~ Upton Sinclair

Comments are closed.