Chaos Theory and Leviathan

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If a butterfly flaps its wings in China or bombs explode in India, New Yorkers will be searched on the subway.

After last week’s tragedy, both the FBI and Mayor Michael Bloomberg admitted to a lack of "information suggesting New York City is a target for a bombing like those that happened in Mumbai, India." But that didn’t keep Our Rulers from unleashing the NYPD on innocent New Yorkers. The New York Sun reported, "Random bag checks were increased…. A daily counterterrorism maneuver called the Critical Response Vehicle u2018surge,’ where 125 or so police officers in more than 76 squad cars flood areas of the city focused on the subway infrastructure….Officers at some subway stations performed a maneuver called u2018Total Order Maintenance,’ where officers enter every train car on a subway station simultaneously…"

The mayor sought to justify this naked fascism. “We take a terror attack in any place in the world, especially one on a public transport system, as a serious warning," he announced. That makes Mike one busy guy: with over 11,100 terror attacks worldwide last year (NB: none here in the US), he’s "taking seriously" an average of 30 per day. You’d think that would leave him too preoccupied to meddle in his fellow citizens’ lives. Yet somehow Mike finds time to worry over every detail, however intimate or minuscule. He hectors New Yorkers about their smoking and dictates that those of their children condemned to New York’s public schools may not carry cell phones to class despite their parents’ wishes. No freedom is safe from this tireless tyrant.

Nor do he and the NYPD put any stock in probabilities. Then again, why should they? Possibilities offer far greater scope for controlling us. That’s why it doesn’t matter that New York and India differ as much as bagels and naan: bombs on Mumbai’s subways give Our Rulers all the cover they need to control — er, protect us. Unlike India, New York shares no border with a hostile country (New Jersey doesn’t count), nor is it denying independence to anyone but Staten Island. Perhaps militants there will bomb the ferry tomorrow, but the secessionists have been a remarkably patient and non-violent lot for a century now. That seems unlikely to change.

Still, it’s possible someone could plant bombs somewhere in New York’s 468-station subway system, just as it’s possible that a tsunami will swamp the City tomorrow. That gives politicians all the opening they need. They shrug off responsibility for building such a dangerous system in the first place (the trains were notorious for rapes and robberies long before terrorism reared its ugly head) and for herding us out of our cars and onto mass transit. And, true to form, Our Rulers disregard the probability that nothing they do actually keeps us safe. Robert Kiley is a former chairman of New York’s transit system who now works as London’s transportation commissioner; a few months ago, he said, "I don’t believe there’s a technological solution to keep [attacks on mass transit] from happening again. Rapid transit is the most vulnerable piece of infrastructure you could possibly imagine.”

He’s not alone in his skepticism. Other bureaucrats, even those demanding airport-style machines for searching commuters, confess that they are flouting the Fourth Amendment to no purpose. Samuel Plumeri, a security honcho for New York and New Jersey, said, "We think [these gizmos] will give us an extra layer of security [for mass transit]." [Emphasis added.] He was equally fuzzy about whether this anti-Constitutional technology could have thwarted the bombings in London and Madrid: “It’s difficult to say it would have. Perhaps could have.”

Amazingly, the sheeple are fine with that. They eagerly trade their liberty not for a little temporary security but for the mere pretense of it. Recognizing that Our Rulers are running a shell game, they nevertheless grant them the usual pass. AP quoted "commuter Steve Cohen, an actuary from Brooklyn": “I don’t know how much good this does, but it can’t hurt." If actuaries are this nonchalant when it comes to probabilities and odds, what can we expect but "Baaaaaa, baaaaaa" from everyone else?

Also capitalizing on the Mumbai murders were New York’s two sorry senators, Charles Schumer and Hillary Clinton. Predictably, they see this as a chance for the Feds to grab more power. AP says they think the bombings "showed the urgent need to increase federal protection for [read: control of] this nation’s subways, buses and tunnels…" Hillary termed this collection of collectivist transport the "u2018soft underbelly’ of homeland security." No doubt, Hill is an expert on soft underbellies after her years with Bill, but why would anyone listen to a woman who slid into office on her husband’s grease?

Besides, everyone knows the "u2018soft underbelly’ of homeland security" is the politicians running it.

Becky Akers [send her mail] writes primarily about the American Revolution.

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