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Homeland Security Is on the Job — Don’t Panic!

Return to your seats immediately! Extinguish all incendiary comments!

by
Dan Miller

Bio

December 30, 2009 - 12:00 am
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It had been reported that Ms. Napolitano would soon visit our enemies in Israel to find out how they deal with airport security measures, so that the United States will not make the same mistakes. Good on her! This is a dangerous world, and she can’t be too careful! As was predicted with extraordinary prescience by the New York Times when she was confirmed as secretary of homeland security on January 20 of last year, she has brought to the job:

… pragmatism and nonpartisanship. Like Mr. Obama, Ms. Napolitano promotes herself as a postpartisan executive governing from the center, even if it infuriates the left and the right. Allies and adversaries alike praise her as having a sharp mind.

Right on! Sharp as a tack! President Obama should be proud that she was his choice.

Nevertheless, President Obama, who doubtless got carried away in the intense emotion of the moment, had better watch his language. In his comprehensive and highly informative address to the nation on December 28 concerning the alleged acts of a mere isolated extremist, he:

… said he launched two probes because … it’s “absolutely critical” that “we learn from this incident and take necessary measures” to prevent similar acts in the future.

Obama said he’s ordered a review of how information regarding Abdulmutallab’s terrorist ties was handled by the federal government and an overall examination of the nation’s terrorist watch list system.

The second probe will examine all screening policies, technologies, and procedures related to air travel, he said.

“We will continue to use every element of our national power to disrupt, to dismantle and defeat the violent extremists who threaten us, whether they are from Afghanistan or Pakistan, Yemen or Somalia, or anywhere where they are plotting attacks against the U.S. homeland,” he vowed.

Demonstrating a momentary lack of cultural sensitivity, President Obama actually used the “t-word,” earlier banned from the administration lexicon as “too inflammatory and representative of old-fashioned ‘politics of fear.’” A new phrase was wisely offered as a politically correct substitute: “man-caused disaster.” It is obviously possible that some who are about to cause, or have caused, man-made disasters may be offended by the appellation “terrorist,” which should therefore be avoided at every opportunity.

“Right-wing extremist” is a far better expression and should be used consistently.

It is comforting to know that the country is in good hands and that, despite President Obama’s regrettable “terrorist” slip of the tongue, things will continue on in their seamless and noble fashion under his wise command and aided by his trusted friend and colleague Secretary Napolitano. We should all look forward with unrestrained glee to the future when the Department of Homeland Health and the Department of Global Carbon Emission Control will guide our lives. One can only hope that they demonstrate comparable dedication and efficiency.

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Dan Miller graduated from Yale University in 1963 and from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1966. He retired from the practice of law in Washington, D.C., in 1996 and has lived in a rural area in Panama since 2002.
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