U.S. Kills Osama bin Laden: Reports

Don’t get me wrong. I’m shedding no tears for this man. But I find myself wondering what the hell this really means. Tojo, Hitler, and Goering had more American blood on their hands than this guy. A lot more. And Tojo and Goering got trial...s. And Hitler would’ve got one too had he not committed suicide. All I think this does is forever cement bin Laden’s status as the eternally convenient boogeyman. A distraction that lasts forever, deflecting attention away from the long line of blunders that led up to those horrible moments on September 11 and the bungling and outright crimes that were committed in its aftermath. By making sure there was no trial, it will also forever bury our own government’s hand in creating bin Laden and al Qaeda. I wonder what unsavory information would’ve been brought to light in a public trial. And maybe it’s just the conspiracy theorist in me, but I’m also left wondering what horrendous piece of legislation is going to get rammed through the House and Senate now that everyone is chanting “USA! USA!” And what the hell does this really mean in terms of strategy? He was already effectively neutralized in some forsaken corner of Pakistan. Does that mean that we win? Can we bring everyone home now? Does it also mean that the trillions of dollars that we have spent in the last ten years on these wars was worth it? Or does another terrorist simply take his place? This reminds me of when law enforcement leaders and politicians declare a big public victory when some gangland drug kingpin is taken out. You haven’t eliminated the problem. You neutralized one small symptom. And another will simply step into the power vacuum because you’ve ignored the root problem which is: why would kids turn to drugs and gangs in the first place? You think this is going to stop terrorism? Why do people turn to it in the first place? I’ve got some news for you, those people do NOT hate us for our freedom. They hate us because our government has meddled in their affairs and we have propped up some pretty awful people as rulers in those countries who have plenty of blood on their hands as well.
— May 2, 2011 7:57 a.m.

Lerach: Don't Blame Public Union Members. Blame Wall Street

SurfPuppy, while I agree with you about 90 percent of the time, I have to say that I most vehemently disagree with you on the argument that public unions are a bigger threat to the poor and middle class, and to the nation as a whole, than the banking sector and Wall Street, and on the argument that it wasn't at least partially Wall Street's fault that the pension funds invested poorly. On the first argument, the amount of money lost, and the political influence of the perpetrators cannot be compared. We are talking billions as compared to over a quadrillion dollars of bad bets that we, the tax payers, will be on the hook for. And while public unions may have some influence in political circles, it is nothing, and I mean NOTHING compared to the number of congressmen, senators, governors, and presidents the banking and Wall Street sectors can buy. On the second point, let's not forget that it was the corrupt Wall Street machine that had these investments rated as AAA. They were supposed to be as safe as Treasuries. I want to point out SurfPuppy, that I agree with you that there needs to be pension reform in the public sector. I live in NYC and have seen many instances of people retiring by age 45 with very sweet deals. As I have pointed out before, they can collect that sweet deal for potentially twice as long as they actually worked the job. That is nonsense and it needs to be fixed. But what I do not like is that public unions, and by default all unions, are being set up as the ultimate bad guys in this story--as if they were the ones responsible for all the ills of our economy right now. How perfect for Wall Street. Deflect the attention. The public unions are not, I repeat, the public unions are NOT the primary reason for all of our ills.
— March 2, 2011 6:23 a.m.

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