Sunday, October 09, 2005

In Today's News

Pakistani Earthquake: Let's keep Pakistan in our thoughts and prayers. As you probably know, there was a 7.7 magnitude earthquake that hit that area Saturday morning. Let's keep the survivors in our hearts and prayers. Donations can be made to the International Red Cross and Red Crecent throught the American Red Cross.

I'm sure that the US and European nations will be there to give support. Fox reports that the US will send helicopters to aid in the effort.

Fox is reporting that Usama bin-Laden is believe to be hiding in that area. While I usually refuse to wish harm on any other person, I'll take the chance of bad karma coming back to bite me when I say it is to be hoped that he and his minions are among the 20-30,000 possible victims. More than 43,000 are reported injured. More than 2.5 are homeless. The Peace Bridge linking India and Pakistan has collapsed.

California earthquake: And another earthquake hits California in the San Simeon area.

Hurricane Stan: Death and destruction left in Guatelmala; more than 500 are known dead and 300 are missing. A village of up to 1,400 has been buried by a mudslide and may be declared a mass grave by the Guatelmalan government.

Subway terrorist plots: And finally, today is reportedly the date that terrorist were planning to attack the New York subway system. The information came from two terrorists arrested last week. Law enforcement presence, undercover and in uniform, has been stepped up. Searches are being made of bags and baby strollers (said by the arrested terrorists to be a tool in placing bomb devices).

The Yankees/Angels game will go on tonight, but don't plan on taking bags into the stadium. All bags will be searched, both on the subway and at the stadium. If you're going to the game, go early, get searched, and don't complain. Searching of bags may save your life.

There is question as to whether New York City should have released the information about possible subway threats. This because Homeland Security is stating that there is no reason to expect that these threats are credible. My opinion is that NY did the right thing by alerting the public to the possibility of attacks on the subways. I think this gives people the option of taking different methods of transportation (if they have the option), or staying home (again, if they have the option. At the very least, it puts that many more eyes out there. I'm sorry, but the cops cannot do it all. I don't want the public panic-striken, but it makes more sense to me to allow the public the chance to make their own decisions, and to help keep an eye out for suspicious behavior, or seeing something that just doesn't look right. It gives them ownership of their safety and their city. We've come to rely on the government to "take care" of us and our safety that we've become complacent.

Hurricane Vince: It seems to be heading in the general direction of Portugal and Spain, but the National Hurricane Center seems to think it will be pulled more northward by a cold front and will dissapate prior to landfall. Yes, we're down to the "V's". Wima is the last name available. Tanya of a few years ago is the farest in my memory we've named. And most of the storms that late in the seaon weren't much to worry about as I recall.

There are about seven weeks left in the hurricane season, but in my opinion we've seen the last of the hurricanes for this year. If by chance we go beyond Wilma, the Hurricane Center will start using the Greek alphabet to designate storms: Alpha, Beta, Ceta, Delpha, Epislon. God help us if we get that far.

New Orleans Cop Abuse Taped: A TV crew taped NO officers using apparent excessive force. The crew was out taping NO nightlife and got more than they planned. I saw the tape and without knowing more about what happened prior to the beginning of the tape, it does look as if the officers are in a heap of trouble. While something occuring prior to tape may not excuse this apparent use of excessive force, it may explain it. The tape showed the arrestee being hit in the head and then wrestled to the ground. The arrestee was obviously resisting arrest, but even so, I can't say that hitting the man in the head was justified. The officers involved have been placed on administrative leave pending investigation.

The tape also showed police trying to intimidate the crew into stopping tape. The cops knew if tape was running there is a good chance that what they did was on tape. What I saw on the tape was intimidation and those officers need to be investigated. I've got a feeling that these officers will use residual trauma from Hurricane Katrina and it's aftermath (post trumactic stress disorder) as a defence. And perhaps it should. I don't know. That's what investigations are for.

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