Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Bloomberg Cheapens Times Square Bomber Debate

One thing that can always be said of Mike Bloomberg is that he is certainly no cheap skate. Anyone who gives away so much of his money-or spends like a drunken stockbroker on his won campaigns-should be insulated from Jack Benny comparisons.

But when it comes to public safety observations-and what could be more urgent a public safety concern than, "weapons of mass destruction," in Times Square?-Mayor Mike 's predictions turn out to be cheap talk: "New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg put his ignorance of the situation and the suspect to great use last night jumping to conclusions that might earn him a long-jump spot in the London Olympics if he decides not to put his dough toward a presidential run that year: Bloomberg later told CBS Evening News Anchor Katie Couric that the suspect behind the bombing attempt could be a domestic terrorist angry at the government who acted alone. "If I had to guess 25 cents, this would be exactly that. Homegrown, or maybe a mentally deranged person, or somebody with a political agenda that doesn't like the health care bill or something. It could be anything," he said."

Well of course, with billionaire Bloomberg venturing 25 cents, we know exactly what his guess is worth-but it's worth noting that Mike is representative of an entire cohort of cultural elites who were desperately hoping that the guy in Times Square with a bomb was wearing a Glenn Beck mask. Here's MSNBC's Contessa Brewer: "Contessa Brewer appeared on the liberal Stephanie Miller radio show on Tuesday and lamented the fact that the person arrested for the attempted Times Square bombing is a Pakistani American. She complained, "I get frustrated...There was part of me that was hoping this was not going to be anybody with ties to any kind of Islamic country."

This was the same refrain when the amen chorus went out of its way to whitewash and minimize the Islamic ties of Fort Hood shooter Major Hassan (PSTD anyone?)-anything to play down the fact that there are religious zealots out there bent on destroying American society if they can find the means. And the mayor's concern today? That New Yorkers not use the bombing suspect's nationality to discriminate against all Pakistanis. Is he serious? "Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the arrest should not be as used as an excuse for anti-Muslim actions. "We will not tolerate any bias or backlash against Pakistani or Muslim New Yorkers," he said."

So, we could be in the middle of an ongoing plot to do some serious damage to New York, but the mayor's concerned with a backlash against Muslims? Even after 9/11 the city stayed calm and no one went on any vendettas against Islam or its followers. This guy seriously wants to run for national office with this mindset? Even Eric Holder sounds tougher than Bloomberg-go figure: "Based on what we know so far, it is clear that this was a terrorist plot aimed at murdering Americans in one of the busiest places in our country," Attorney General Eric Holder said in Washington."

Mayor Bloomberg wants folks to be tolerant and circumspect, but there's one group that is fair game-health care opponents. Who could they be? As Mary Katherine Ham reports: "It's always important not to jump to conclusions in a suspected terrorism case, unless the conclusion you're jumping to is that it was a "one-off," isolated, lone wolf kind of thing. Then, you're free to speculate all day long. Bloomberg was only guessing about what the attack was but he sounded pretty sure about what it wasn't: "There is no evidence here of a conspiracy, there is no evidence that it's tied into anything else. It looks like an amateurish job done by at least one person," he told Couric. I understand the need for the mayor to be careful before assigning blame for a terrorism attempt, but the problem is he's only careful not to smear one party. If he doesn't have information, why is only one conclusion off-limits— the one new information happens to support?"

Because that conclusion may offend the group that is so quick to take offense. And couldn't the fact that the poor fellow was in foreclosure be the real reason for his action? As dumb as our mayor sounds on all of this, we have to give CNN's Jim Acosta the last word in stupidity: "On Tuesday's American Morning, CNN's Jim Acosta sympathized with the suspect in the failed Times Square terror plot, Faisal Shahzad, citing how a guest claimed that his family's house in Connecticut went into foreclosure in 2009: "One would have to imagine that that brought a lot of pressure and a lot of heartache on that family"

That, and a belief in a terrorist ideology rooted in a religious perversion-all leading to a, "man caused disaster."