Archive for November, 2008

November 30, 2008

JUSTIN HIGGINS: How the G.O.P. can take back the youth vote.

November 30, 2008

OUCH: British Couple at Taj Hotel: “We Thought We Were Safe, Then CNN Stepped In.” Ouch.

UPDATE: Reader Bill Jones notes that this report is false. At least I think this is the one he means. He rather churlishly just kept telling me I had a wrong story linked, but wouldn’t provide the specific item. I’m happy to correct errors, but in general it’s nice to know exactly which post is being complained about. Name-calling and suggestions that I search “CNN” on my blog is not so nice. But hey, even jerks can correct errors, though they tend to do it in jerkish ways.

November 30, 2008

SCORCHED EARTH: Activists Seek Revocation of Tax Exempt Status of Churches That Supported Prop 8.

November 30, 2008

FIGHTING CRIME, THE OLD-FASHIONED WAY: Victim shoots man during robbery try. “An armed robber who tried to stick up a man Monday night ended up getting shot when the victim pulled out his own gun, police said.” (Via Gun Pundit).

November 30, 2008

AT DAILYKOS, worries about famine in 2009. I thought that Obama was going to fix all of that. Instead, it’s sounding more like a John Ringo scenario. Can this be right?

November 30, 2008

MARK STEYN ON MUMBAI: Just go read it, okay? But here’s a bit: “What’s relevant about the Mumbai model is that it would work in just about any second-tier city in any democratic state: Seize multiple soft targets and overwhelm the municipal infrastructure to the point where any emergency plan will simply be swamped by the sheer scale of events.”

An armed citizenry would help a lot. So would a system that let text-messaging guide responders (but beware of spoofing). On the other hand, this is no super-tactic. It takes a lot more training and resources than a car bomb, to do less damage — except for the media-induced fear, which is the main goal, but which peaks the first time it’s tried.

Plus this: ‘But we’re in danger of missing the forest for the trees. The forest is the ideology. It’s the ideology that determines whether you can find enough young hotshot guys in the neighborhood willing to strap on a suicide belt or (rather more promising as a long-term career) at least grab an AK and shoot up a hotel lobby. Or, if active terrorists are a bit thin on the ground, whether you can count at least on some degree of broader support on the ground. You’re sitting in some distant foreign capital but you’re minded to pull off a Bombay-style operation in, say, Amsterdam or Manchester or Toronto. Where would you start? Easy. You know the radical mosques, and the other ideological-front organizations. You’ve already made landfall. . . . This isn’t law enforcement but an ideological assault — and we’re fighting the symptoms not the cause. Islamic imperialists want an Islamic society, not just in Palestine and Kashmir but in the Netherlands and Britain, too.”

November 30, 2008

DO TELL: Muslims “Worry About Image” after Mumbai.

November 30, 2008

IN LIGHT OF THE EARLIER DISCUSSIONS about Mumbai and the value of an armed citizenry, it’s worth noting that India apparently has strict gun control laws that, as usual, don’t seem to have kept guns out of the hands of killers.

November 30, 2008

DAVID ALTMAN: Lessons from Mumbai: “Today, we see the emergence of a dark, new, and different army, with new branches that include all the components of a military, yet still utilize the terror doctrine. The advantage of terrorist armies is first and foremost the fact they are not subjected to any law or international convention. They do not face any pressure and they are not accountable to anyone. They tie the hands of the responding force, which is the only side subjected to conventions pertaining to human rights, war captives, and the targeting of civilians.”

UPDATE: Reader Steve Turney emails: “David Altman calls for creating ‘an international anti-terror force… this force must be specialized, it must study the new threat, and it must be able to provide an immediate response by forces trained especially to that end.’ If the Indian forces were slow to respond, how much faster would an international force be? Where would they be based? Murtha might recommend Okinawa.”

Yeah. I think Altman meant something a bit more preemptive, and not reactive. But if you want first responders with guns to be fast, then the first responders have to already be on the scene. Which means they need to be the kind of people previously described as “victims,” only with guns . . . .

ANOTHER UPDATE: Related item from Andrew Bostom.

November 30, 2008

I WONDER IF THEY’LL HAVE SPECIAL CAMPS FOR THAT? Bangkok Protesters Aim to ‘Re-educate’ Rural Thai Majority.

November 30, 2008

IN THE WAKE OF MUMBAI, an agnostic Jew considers Chabad.

November 30, 2008

AN “ELEGANT AND EASY” pork tenderloin recipe.

November 30, 2008

SO MUCH FOR post-racial America, I guess. “The number two man at NBC News believes Barack Obama’s skin color gives him more legitimacy around the world than possibly any American leader in history.”

UPDATE: Reader Thomas Prewitt writes: “I find it curious that no one at NBC ever said that our black female Secretary of State has more legitimacy around the world than possibly any Secretary of State in history.” Yeah, go figure.

November 30, 2008

GEERT WILDERS: “Our culture is better.”

As he sees it, the West suffers from an excess of toleration for those who do not share its tradition of tolerance. “We believe that — ‘we’ means the political elite — that all cultures are equal,” he says. “I believe this is the biggest disease today facing Europe. . . . We should wake up and tell ourselves: You’re not a xenophobe, you’re not a racist, you’re not a crazy guy if you say, ‘My culture is better than yours.’ A culture based on Christianity, Judaism, humanism is better. Look at how we treat women, look at how we treat apostates, look at how we go with the separation of church and state. I can give you 500 examples why our culture is better.”

Read the whole thing.

November 30, 2008

KIM DU TOIT is retiring from blogging. He’ll be missed.

November 30, 2008

MORE BIG BLACK FRIDAY WEEKEND SALES. Still a few hours left before they realize that this isn’t actually the worst shopping season ever . . .

November 30, 2008

REVIEWING THE Blackberry Storm.

November 30, 2008

HOW THE MUMBAI ATTACKS ARE PLAYING: Jihadists see “invasion” as a triumph.

November 30, 2008

AN INTROSPECTIVE NEW YORK TIMES PIECE provokes a discussion.

November 30, 2008

WHAT WILL ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER DO after he leaves the governorship of California?

With his governorship entering its final years and his ability to attract the spotlight intact, the question is arising more frequently: What will Arnold do?

Will he share the stage with Al Gore as a global environmental crusader, promote green technology for an Obama administration, run for the U.S. Senate? Or might he pursue political reform on a broader scale, as he has hinted in appearances with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who shares Schwarzenegger’s independent streak?

Whether he’s marketable on any of that stuff will largely depend on whether he can stave off bankruptcy for California without a federal bailout. But if he follows in Al Gore’s footsteps, he’ll presumably be a bit braver.

November 30, 2008

JOHN KASS on Dick Durbin and George Ryan: “It was as if the Combine reached out and grabbed the people of Illinois and slapped us hard with a backhand across the mouth, letting us know who runs things, the sting of the knuckles on our nose to remind us that Illinois is not Camelot. . . . In what universe does redemption come without cost, where cynicism so casually dresses itself up as mercy and compassion? Here. In this place. In Illinois.” Read the whole thing.

November 30, 2008

MUMBAI: Doctors shocked at hostages’ torture.

November 30, 2008

ADVICE ON home-cooking for hard times.

November 30, 2008

THE SPIN BEGINS! New York Times trying to credit Obama with Iraq win. Bob Owens deconstructs.

Compare with this assessment in the Kansas City Star: Bush leaves Iraq in good shape for Obama.

November 30, 2008

A READER SENDS A LINK TO THE “APPLESEED PROJECT,” which is working to create a nation of riflemen. Seems like a good idea.

UPDATE: Reader Jason Ruser sends a link to this report from one of their events.

November 30, 2008

FROM BOOMERANG CHILDREN to boomerang parents. “Between 2000 and 2007, the number of people 65 and older living with their adult children increased by more than 50 percent, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.”

November 30, 2008

IN THE MAIL: The Vorkosigan Companion, which fans of Miles Vorkosigan will find interesting.

November 30, 2008

GETTING CREATIVE, with leftovers.

November 30, 2008

RUSSIA TIGHTENS Europe’s energy noose.

November 30, 2008

THOUGHTS ON those Mumbai policemen who didn’t shoot.

UPDATE: Lots of interesting discussion in the comments. Related item here.

November 30, 2008

DAVE HARDY: High-tech shipping sets up vessels for pirate attack.

November 30, 2008

MUMBAI — AN EPIC FAIL: Plan was to kill 5,000. Underperforming by 95%.

November 30, 2008

CREATING RECEPTIVITY TO HIGHER TAXES via a recession? If the politicians think they can get more of our money by making the economy suck, well . . . isn’t that a bad incentive?

November 30, 2008

MORE MEN ARE TAKING THE LEAD in caring for elderly relatives. I’m not surprised to hear this, as it matches what I’ve seen in my own life.

November 30, 2008

NOW THEY TELL US: Obama’s “Not Black,” according to a piece in the Washington Post. Hmm. Gates reappointed at Defense, an Iraq-Hawk Secretary of State, keeping the tax cuts, and now the next President turns out not to be black — hey, they told me if I voted for McCain we’d get a third term for Bush, and I guess they were right!

November 30, 2008

L.A. TIMES: Liberal Groups Feel Welcome in Washington Again. “Their vision includes federal laws banning job discrimination against gays; expanded hate-crime laws; public land protections from logging and oil drilling; and easier union organizing of workers.”

November 30, 2008

LITTLE MISS ATTILA has moved.

November 30, 2008

ANOTHER EDITORIAL ON CHARLES RANGEL:

Are congressional Democrats truly committed to dealing with the economic and fiscal policy challenges they face next year? The answer will be seen in how they address their increasingly problematic Charlie Rangel situation.

Scarcely a day goes by without yet another ethical impropriety coming to light regarding the chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee.

Read the whole thing.

November 30, 2008

WHAT BIG THREE AUTOWORKERS MAKE, and what they cost.

November 29, 2008

UP TO 65% OFF in this big kitchen and home sale. Panic sales are yielding good savings this year. . . ..

November 29, 2008

INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY: Stop Covering Up and Kill the Community Reinvestment Act.

November 29, 2008

YOU REALIZE, OF COURSE, THAT THIS MEANS WAR: In his latest tape Ayman Al-Zawahiri warned America to convert to Islam and give up beer.

November 29, 2008

A WOUNDED WARRIOR speaks out.

November 29, 2008

IT’S THE BARBIE DOLL’S fiftieth anniversary. She still looks good, but a bit plastic-y — guess she’s had some work done . . . .

November 29, 2008

HMM: Muslims protesting online against violence and fundamentalism find themselves cornered by radical elements in their community.

Plus, from Pakistan: I am a Mumbaikar today.

UPDATE: First link was bad before. Fixed now. Sorry!

November 29, 2008

THE MUMBAI ATTACKS: Racist: “And as Indian commandos ended the bloody 59-hour siege at the Taj yesterday by killing the last three Islamic gunmen, baby-faced Kasab was dispassionately detailing the background to the mayhem. He described how its mastermind briefed the group to ‘target whites, preferably Americans and British’.”

November 29, 2008

ANOTHER UNIT CITATION FOR THE RETAIL SUPPORT BRIGADE: Early Data Shows Strong Black Friday. “Sales during the day after Thanksgiving rose 3 percent to $10.6 billion, according to preliminary figures released Saturday by ShopperTrak RCT Corp., a Chicago-based research firm that tracks sales at more than 50,000 retail outlets.” Thanks, folks: You may have saved the economy! The only bad news is, the discounts may not be as deep after this weekend . . . .

November 29, 2008

A SIGN THAT THE LAW IS BAD LAW AND NEEDS TO BE CHANGED? Or is it just an excuse? Legal Hurdles in West Slow Pursuit of Pirates. “While the pirates have been buying GPS devices, satellite phones and more-powerful outboard motors, officials in Europe have been discussing jurisdictional issues surrounding the arrest of pirates on the high seas and even the possibility that the pirates might demand asylum if brought onto European Union shores.”

If the 21st Century nation-state can’t even fight pirates, what’s it good for, exactly? Collecting taxes? What happens when taxpayers decide they’d rather be pirates?

November 29, 2008

THAILAND: Violent Coup That’s All Rather Quiet.

November 29, 2008

NOW THERE ACTUALLY IS a WKRP in Cincinnati.

November 29, 2008

PEOPLE WANT TO KNOW WHAT I THINK about this Asus 10″ notebook PC. I haven’t used one, but at $423 for an Atom-powered machine with XP, a bigger screen and keyboard than my quite-nice 9″ Asus, a 160GB hard drive and 7-hour battery life, it sounds good. I like my 9″ Asus XP machine a lot, but it’s not nearly as capable as this one and it cost nearly as much.

UPDATE: Reader Chris Feola emails:

Suggest you check out the new Asus netbooks from their notebook division, notably the N10 for an extra $6.

What you get is pretty much a 12-inch chassis notebook with a great keyboard, a terrific 10-inch screen and plenty of storage. I went whole hog and bought the loaded one: High-end nVidia graphics that can be switched off to save battery life; tons of cool stuff like the ability to log in via fingerprint and facial recognition; and the strangely speedy Windows Vista Business, which appears much better behaved than the Home variants. In effect, you end up with a terrific looking, tiny, highly capable ultra light laptop that runs forever on battery for about a third the price of the MacBook Air or those little Sony Vaios, with the tradeoff being the Intel Atom processor rather than a Core Duo. It’s good enough to be your primary machine as long as you’re not, say, processing video. (It runs Gears of War. No, seriously. Here it is running Crysis.) Recommended.

Thanks again for a fascinating site.

Thanks for your interesting email, Chris!

November 29, 2008

INDIANS CLAIM TERRORISTS took orders from Pakistan.

UPDATE: Complaints of strategic deafness.

November 29, 2008

AMITY SHLAES: The Krugman recipe for depression.

November 29, 2008

REJECT MEDICARE, and lose Social Security, too. Well, that makes sense . . . .

November 29, 2008

HMM: Mumbai photographer: I wish I’d had a gun, not a camera. Armed police would not fire back. “At one point, I ran up to them and told them to use their weapons. I said, ‘Shoot them, they’re sitting ducks!’ but they just didn’t shoot back.” This whole unwillingness to shoot business is becoming a problem. On a related note, see my earlier thoughts on this situation here.

UPDATE: Reader Jeff Brown emails:

Having a lot of people in a group carrying would increase the odds of having an armed person who is willing to engage the terrorists. This would not only provide resistance but also spur others, i.e., frozen police officers, to engage. In an emergency, the first person to engage is the catalyst to move the crowd from onlookers frozen by indecision to action, either to provide assistance or in situation such as Mumbai, to confront.

Force Science Institute research at Minnesota State University found that even naive shooters are effective in mid to close combat ranges that such an attack would entail. Their research covered police engagements with inexperienced shooters but it has relevance here. Even a complete neophyte can be effective in a gun fight. What is needed is a willingness to engage.

This should come as no surprise to readers of Jeff Cooper. Or even Robert Heinlein. I suspect the problem is that the Indian police were trained, or at least acculturated, not to shoot without orders. That’s an approach that doesn’t work in fast-moving situations like this one.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Related thoughts from SayUncle.

MORE: For those who didn’t get the Heinlein reference — shocking that such folk exist, but what can you do? — it’s this: “Get a shot off fast. This upsets him long enough to let you make your second shot perfect.”

November 29, 2008

SACKLER PRIZE IN PHYSICS will go to nanotechnology researcher David Baker.

November 29, 2008

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Obama may do more for George Bush’s reputation than anyone thinks.

November 29, 2008

ZELL MILLER CROSSES PARTY LINES AND endorses Saxby Chambliss. Much more here.

I notice that Chambliss is still pitching hard for donations.

November 29, 2008

WASHINGTON POST: Rangel Should Give Up His Chairmanship. “At a time when President-elect Barack Obama is holding frequent news conferences to reassure the markets and the American people that he is ready to lead the nation to economic recovery, the last thing he will need is a chairman of Ways and Means caught up in a swirl of serious allegations.”

November 29, 2008

NOW THEY TELL US (CONT’D): Obama’s small donor base image is a myth, new study reveals. “The reality of Obama’s fundraising was impressive, but the reality does not match the myth.”

November 29, 2008

A LOOK AT the Kenyans of Cayman.

November 29, 2008

IT’S AN AMERICAN THING, you wouldn’t understand.

November 29, 2008

TOM SMITH ON TALK OF A GREEN NEW DEAL: “Or is it the New Green Deal? Whatever it is, I think it is remarkable and my bet is it is going to be a big fiasco. I think all of the VC money going into it, and I think it is a lot, is spurred on more by the hope of government subsidies in one form or another than by real economics. It strikes me as a strange sort of mania. It looks like we are pouring a lot of money we don’t have into technologies that very well may not work to solve a problem we are not sure we have.”

November 29, 2008

A LOOK AT those “paranoid” gun owners.

November 29, 2008

IT’S A NEW EPISODE OF POLIWOOD, with Roger Simon and Lionel Chetwynd. It’s about James Bond, Mumbai, and more — well, sort of. Free to everybody, no registration required.

November 29, 2008

IN THE MAIL: Christopher Anvil’s War Games, a collection of classic space SF edited by Eric Flint.

November 29, 2008

CHINA FACES a sexual crisis.

November 29, 2008

FROM JOSE GUARDIA another overnight roundup of Mumbai news. Note the failed car-bombing aimed at the Mumbai airport.

November 29, 2008

HMM: Rubin, Under Fire, Defends His Role at Citi. “Under fire for his role in the near-collapse of Citigroup Inc., Robert Rubin said its problems were due to the buckling financial system, not its own mistakes, and that his role was peripheral to the bank’s main operations even though he was one of its highest-paid officials.” Sounds kinda self-serving, but since it’s still the Obama honeymoon he’ll probably get a pass. Though if he does, it will force the Dems to throttle back on their blame-Wall-Street talk . . . .

November 29, 2008

MICHAEL BARONE: Despite Charlie Rangel’s Tax Problems, He Might Help Republicans Keep Bush’s Tax Cuts.

November 29, 2008

A LAND RUSH IN WYOMING, spurred by wind power.

November 29, 2008

“HIS CONFIDENT SMILE AND KIND EYES are an inspiration to us all.”

November 29, 2008

MARK STEYN: “Britain has clearly decided it has a golden future as one vast theme-park for The Onion.”

November 29, 2008

MICKEY KAUS WONDERS if the Mumbai attacks were originally intended as a Madrid-like election-changer that got postponed because of heightened security earlier in November.

November 29, 2008

GLOBAL WARMING CAMPAIGN LOSING STEAM: “There is both growing public reluctance to make personal sacrifices and a distinct lack of enthusiasm for the major international efforts now underway to battle climate change, according to findings of a poll of 12,000 citizens in 11 countries, including Canada.”

November 28, 2008

AN AWARD FOR Scott Nelson’s John Henry book.

November 28, 2008

A WHILE BACK I warned to look at Obama’s lower-tier appointments, not just the ones that get a lot of attention. 24Ahead is doing just that.

November 28, 2008

JOHN THOMPSON:

The Mumbai attacks represent a scenario that few Western police and security forces have dared envision. Fewer still have prepared for it.

The basic strategy: use a large number of attackers to overwhelm a target city’s ability to respond, and then suddenly switch focus to high value targets and seize hostages.

Of course, if significant numbers of citizens were armed, the response would be much harder to overwhelm.

UPDATE: Reader Andrew Samet writes:

So you think that ordinary citizens armed with handguns would slow down a surprise attack by trained paramilitary forces armed with automatic weapons, grenades and who knows what else? I’m curious how you see that scenario playing out.

The way I see it, if terrorists such as these could rely on a “significant number” (and I don’t know what that means, exactly – 10 percent? 20 percent?) of their targets carrying guns, they wouldn’t bother taking hostages. They’d just slaughter everyone in sight. They might take a few hits, but they’d have planned for that, just like any army would.

Well, let’s see. There were about 25 terrorists in Mumbai, according to the reports I’ve seen. I’m not sure how many people were at the Taj hotel but it’s a big place. Say it’s 2000 and 10% are armed. That’s 200 vs. 25 (and it’s really better odds than that, since I don’t think there were 25 terrorists at the Taj, but rather 25 overall; these numbers will likely turn out to be wrong, but probably not wrong enough to affect this analysis.) Now the 25 terrorists were practiced at working together, and probably fairly proficient (though I saw an Indian commando saying they were skilled because “most people cannot operate an AK rifle or throw a grenade” which isn’t, by itself, a stirring tribute to their military skills). Nonetheless, 1-8 odds, even with a weapons and training advantage, aren’t great. Would they take hostages? It would probably be a lot harder. Would that prevent raids like this? Maybe not, but if you’re just out to kill people and not take hostages, why not just use a car-bomb? Plus, when your “victims” are shooting back at you and killing you, they’re not really victims any more, are they? Kinda undercuts the whole terrorism game.

Meanwhile, reader D.A. Rodgers emails:

You wrote, after excerpting Thompson:

“Of course, if significant numbers of citizens were armed, the response would be much harder to overwhelm.”

Thus, Texas will be last place to face this kind of terrorism.

Seriously, this reminds me very much of the situation after the Rodney King verdict. In L.A., where no law-abiding citizen (Korean-Americans excepted) carries (or even owns) a gun, the rioters were able to “use a large number of attackers to overwhelm a target city’s ability to respond.” In Houston, attempts were made to start a similar riot in response to the Rodney King verdict. Would-be rioters shot from the freeway into the neighborhoods. The residents shot back.

End result? No riot. Not even one Ranger.

We saw armed Houstonians patrolling their own streets after Hurricane Rita, too. I’ll note that it hasn’t been that long — only a few generations — since people expected to have to resist brigands, etc., in all sorts of situations. Back to the future?

ANOTHER UPDATE: According to Reuters, there were only ten terrorists. That would make the odds 20-1 in favor of the good guys in the hypothetical above, which would seem to be quite a burden for the terrorists to overcome. But Reuters calls them “militants.”

Anyway, people don’t stop killers, people with guns do. Maybe we need a rifle in every pot?

MORE: Reader Peter Sterne writes: ‘Your reader, Andrew Samet, expressed skepticism about an armed citizenry’s ability to successfully fight a trained paramilitary force. I kind of remember something about an armed citizenry successfully taking on a trained military very early in the history of this country … it’s not a perfect analogy with Mumbai, and everyone was much better acquainted with firearms back then, but, you know, I’m just sayin.’”

STILL MORE: Dave Hardy comments: “I really wouldn’t give ten men attacking a few thousand Tucsonans much of a chance. About 2% of Pima County has a CCW permit; others carry openly or have one in their car (you don’t need a permit to have a holstered gun in the glove compartment). So an attack on 2,000 people means an attack on *at least* forty who have a gun on them, and more who will have one available in seconds. A fair number of whom will be behind the attackers’ backs.”

No guarantees on how it turns out, of course — but from the attacker’s point of view, that’s the problem, isn’t it? Because when you attack a bunch of unarmed people, well, the guarantees are a lot closer to hand . . . .

FINALLY: Reader Drew Kelley comments: “It seems a lot of people need to be reminded why the Japanese were very reluctant to launch an invasion of the United States proper. And then, after assimilating that information, they need to refamiliarize themselves with the basics of being a rifleman, and pistol marksmanship. It seems we are surrounded by crocodile feeders.”

November 28, 2008

MORE ON Rosie O’Donnell’s flop: “Is it that people just don’t like Rosie anymore, that no one wants variety shows anymore, or is it just the combination of Rosie and variety that’s poison? Writing the headline to this post, I typo’d ‘old-fashioned variety sow,’ which seemed like a clue from my not-very-nice subconscious.”

November 28, 2008

OIL COMPANY ROBOT SHOOTS VIDEO of rare giant squid. “As oil companies and their ROVs spend more time in the bathypelagic zone, more discoveries are sure to follow, experts say. Eager for hard-to-come-by deep-sea video and data, some biologists are formally aligning themselves with the companies.”

November 28, 2008

A BUNCH OF Black Friday videogame deals.

November 28, 2008

ED CONE: “He says ‘vehicle for gravy’ like it’s a bad thing.”

November 28, 2008

THE NEXT PEARL HARBOR? Cyber-attack on Defense Department computers raises concerns. You don’t even have to bring the systems down — just render them untrustworthy. This is getting attention, but not nearly enough.

November 28, 2008

SOMETHING DIFFERENT: Bill Roggio on the Mumbai attacks. “The Mumbai attack is something different. Foreign assault teams that likely trained and originated from outside the country infiltrated a major city to conduct multiple attacks on carefully chosen targets. The primary weapon was the gunman, not the suicide bomber. The attack itself has paralyzed a city of 18 million. And two days after the attack began, Indian forces are still working to root out the terror teams.” If lots of ordinary people in the hotels had been armed, it probably wouldn’t have worked as well . . . . (Via Jules Crittenden, who has much more).

UPDATE: Some further analysis. “Since the period of suicide terror, terror organizations have upgraded to include paramilitary fighting units, as opposed to singular acts of terror. . . . The events taking place in Mumbai must act as a warning and turning point in the world’s treatment of the local terror armies that base themselves in various parts of the world, and threaten the world’s stability as a whole.”

ANOTHER UPDATE: Related item here.

MORE: Reader Tom Holsinger emails: “This was not an Al Qaeda operation. This was planned and conducted by Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence Agency.” Well, possibly. Stay tuned.

November 28, 2008

HEH: GM Asks U.S. FAA to Bar Public Tracking of Leased Corporate Jet. I didn’t realize you could do this. Can somebody start tracking the flights of celebrity global-warming activists the same way?

November 28, 2008

AN ARMY OF SHOPPERS: Letting people vote on what goes on sale.

UPDATE: Link was bad before. Fixed now. Sorry!

November 28, 2008

GEE, DO YOU THINK? Media Bias Infects The Media’s Self-Examination.

November 28, 2008

TECHCRUNCH: When everyone is a blogger, nothing you say is off the record.

It’s true.

November 28, 2008

A BLACK FRIDAY REPORT from LawHawk. Plus, another report from Paul Havemann in Northern New Jersey:

Here in north NJ, there seems to be plenty of activity at the Rockaway Mall. The wife and I got there about 9 am (no predawn vigils for us!), and there was, literally, hardly a parking spot to be found. Judging by the stream of shoppers laden with bags, it won’t be a bleak Friday for retailers.

I hope that’s right, though I suppose the deep discounts ensure that it won’t be very profitable even if sales are high. Oh, well. Meanwhile, crowds were big in Knoxville. “Big crowds greeted such retailers as Best Buy, Target and Belk. By 7:30 a.m. the parking lot at West Town Mall was full.” Also, the outlet malls near Dollywood were packed. More here.

UPDATE: Reader Dirk Schulbach writes: “Date line Woodburn, Oregon, 10:45 PM, Thanksgiving evening. Northbound I-5 lined up 1/2 mile before the exit waiting to get off freeway, southbound I-5 a 3 mile backup waiting to get off the freeway. The Woodburn Outlet Mall was opening at 11 PM and the huge parking lot at the mall was filled to capacity and the frontage roads feeding them packed solid in both directions, pretty much gridlocked. And lots of traffic headed south from Portland towards the mall. Worst economy since the 1930′s? I don’t think so. “

November 28, 2008

A COLLECTION OF Black Friday toy deals.

November 28, 2008

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: From Market Economy to Political Economy. Like the song says, “they’ll turn us all into beggars ’cause they’re easier to please.”

November 28, 2008

GREG MANKIW: Redefining “Grownup” and “Hack.” There’s a lot of redefining going on at the moment . . .

November 28, 2008

I’VE BEEN WARNING ABOUT THE UNDERFUNDED / OVERGENEROUS PUBLIC PENSION PROBLEM for a while, but PensionTsunami.com is a site devoted to just that, as well as corporate pensions and Social Security.

November 28, 2008

ARI KAUFMAN: What The Obama Kids Will Miss Out On At Private School.

November 28, 2008

PRAISE FOR OBAMA’S “first-rate economic team” from Karl Rove.

November 28, 2008

RON COLEMAN: We’re All Chabadniks Now.

November 28, 2008

DUH. “Due diligence” is only for people the press doesn’t like.

November 28, 2008

THE ALBANY TIMES-UNION: Shameless, Mr. Rangel. “If Mr. Dingell can lose his control of a powerful committee, who else might? Someone just nominate Rep. Charles Rangel of Harlem, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee? We’ll second that. Mr. Rangel should have been gone already. . . . The chairman of the committee that writes the tax laws already has been caught not paying taxes on vacation property he owns in the Dominican Republic. Mr. Rangel kept his post, though, thanks to House Democrats who have a double standard when it comes to ethics laws. . . . Now Mr. Rangel is back in the news. The New York Times reported the sordid story earlier this week of how Mr. Rangel at once took care of an oil drilling company and himself.”

November 28, 2008

MICHELE CATALANO on Christmas shopping in a time of recession.

November 28, 2008

THOUGHTS ON THE MUMBAI ATTACKS, at Captain’s Journal.