Decade In Review – Part III (2007 – 2009)

by Ben Hoffman

2007

The sub-prime mortgage crisis that brought down our economy started some time in 2007. The current recession in U.S. officially began in December of 2007. Right-wingers around the country like to blame it on the Democrats taking power of congress early that year and some even blame it retroactively on Barack Obama. Right-wingers believe in the supernatural, so apparently they believe Democrats have the power to cause events to occur in the past.

Foot and mouth disease was found on a farm at in UK. All livestock was banned the following day. Foot IN mouth disease continued to affect George W. Bush’s speech patterns.

2007 marked an extreme escalation in violence in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Multiple suicide bombings in Northern Iraq kill 572. Suicide bomber kills more than 50 in Afghanistan including 6 member of the National Assembly.

An earthquake in Peru killed 512 and injured more than 1500.

2008

This decade was just one disaster after another. In January, the price of oil hit $100 a barrel for first time. The Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 led to oil to be traded by speculators who drove up the price of oil for profit. The high price of fuel caused inflation and hurt consumption. People were spending all their extra money on gas with little left over for luxury items or even essential items. This helped drag our country into the recession.

Worldwide stock markets crashed, resulting in billions of dollars in losses. Rising food and fuel prices triggered riots in 3rd world countries. Lehman Bros filed for Chap 11 bankruptcy in September. 700 billion dollars was given to Henry Paulson in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act to purchase failing bank assets. Paulson changed his mind a few weeks after receiving the money and instead handed over hundreds of billions to his buddies in the banking industry. Tens of billions are unaccounted for since there was little accounting and no oversight as to how the money was spent.

Also in 2008, Fidel Castro resigned as President of Cuba and his brother Raul was elected to take his place. In June, Bill Gates steps down from Microsoft to concentrate on philanthropy. Perhaps that was to redeem himself for all the years of unethical and illegal business practices. Or maybe he just doesn’t need so many billions of dollars.

Over 130 thousand people were killed by Cyclone Nargis in Burma/Myanmar. Almost 70 thousand were killed in China by an earthquake. Shoddy building construction led to homes and schools collapsing on the occupants.

A suicide bomber hit the Indian embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 58 and injuring over 150. More than 60 people were killed in other suicide bombings in Afghanistan.

Buddhist monks protested China’s occupation of Tibet and many were murdered or imprisoned by Chinese officials. China has been one of the world’s worst violators of human rights, yet they were awarded the 2008 Summer Olympics. Athletes were concerned about the severe pollution in Beijing, but it didn’t seem to be a problem.

Late in the year, a global financial crisis erupted and banks failed worldwide and in November,
Obama was elected first black president.

2009

Which brings us to this year. Obama took office on January 15 and was immediately blamed for the recession. Although Bush’s last fiscal year ended in October of this year and his deficit was triple his previous record from 2008, Obama was blamed for putting our country deep in debt from all his “spending.”

The swine flu from Mexico was deemed global pandemic. Many people around the country have become sick or even died from the flu. Right-winger Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was re-elected in fraud-ridden election in Iran. Protests followed and right-wingers complained that Obama hasn’t done anything. Many cite Reagan’s “tear down this wall speech.”

Natural disasters continued with Typhoon Morakot hitting Taiwan and killing 500.

We have three days left of this disaster of a decade. Let’s hope for those to be uneventful. We nearly had another deadly terrorist attack on Christmas day. The only thing that saved the people on the airliner was the stupidity of the terrorist.

Advertisements

10 Comments to “Decade In Review – Part III (2007 – 2009)”

  1. Mr. Hoffman,

    “Right-winger Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was re-elected in fraud-ridden election in Iran. ” 🙂

    “We nearly had another deadly terrorist attack on Christmas day. The only thing that saved the people on the airliner was the stupidity of the terrorist.”

    DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said.

    “What we are focused on is making sure that the air environment remains safe, that people are confident when they travel. And one thing I’d like to point out is that the system worked. Everybody played an important role here. The passengers and crew of the flight took appropriate action. Within literally an hour to 90 minutes of the incident occurring, all 128 flights in the air had been notified to take some special measures in light of what had occurred on the Northwest Airlines flight. We instituted new measures on the ground and at screening areas, both here in the United States and in Europe, where this flight originated.

    So the whole process of making sure that we respond properly, correctly and effectively went very smoothly.”

    I guess Ms Napolitano meant that the system began working after the passengers and crew would have been dead.

    Afterward Ms. Napolitano contradicted herself. “Our system did not work in this instance,”

    We seem to have dueling Napolitanos.

    I am much more assured now that President Obama has addressed the problem. ” A passenger allegedly tried to ignite an explosive device on his body, setting off a fire.” “A full investigation has been launched into this attempted act of terrorism.”

    I am glad that this was only “allegedly” an attempted act of terrorism and not another ” man-caused disaster “.

    • I think we’ve been lucky that there hasn’t been another successful terrorist attack. The DHS probably gets 100s of warnings a day and somebody has to make the decision which ones are serious and which ones aren’t. And we don’t have much control over who gets on flights to the U.S. from other countries.

  2. Mr. Hoffman,

    It is true that the “terrorist” boarded the two flights in foreign countries, but the US does have some control and responsibility. More information is coming out that this guy was being watched by the CIA. It does seem that besides the failure of foreign airport security, there was a failure of US Intelligence.

    I take this time to remind you that your party constantly campaigned against US Intelligence efforts. From labeling water boarding as torture, to trying to close Gitmo, to trying to stop phone tapping of calls from the US to the Middle East. Obama is reaping what he has sown.

    So tell me do you think this clown should have been questioned by intelligence officers before he was lawyered up? I wonder how many future terrorists have not been stopped with the information we did not get because Mr. Abdulmutallab is being treated as a criminal suspect and not an enemy combatant.

    This is real life and death. Your hero and the fools around him would rather play politics, instead of protecting American lives.

    • I’m sorry, Alan, but the use of torture and illegal spying on Americans id not going to make us safer. The use of actual intelligence efforts will.

    • [More information is coming out that this guy was being watched by the CIA. It does seem that besides the failure of foreign airport security, there was a failure of US Intelligence.

      I take this time to remind you that your party constantly campaigned against US Intelligence efforts.]

      It seems we had all the intelligence we needed since, as you said, he was being watched by the CIA. The problem was communication, or lack thereof. That problem should have been fixed long ago. All the waterboarding in the world wouldn’t have stopped this incident if he was still allowed to get on the plane with a bomb.

      No, this was not Obama’s fault. This was the fault of the Bush administration.

    • [This is real life and death. Your hero and the fools around him would rather play politics, instead of protecting American lives.]

      I couldn’t agree more. So why is Republican Sen. Jim DeMint holding up confirmation of the new TSA chief for political purposes? There are lives at stake here.

  3. Mr. Hoffman,

    “So why is Republican Sen. Jim DeMint holding up confirmation of the new TSA chief for political purposes? There are lives at stake here.”

    I do not have the answer. Leave me some time to get up to speed on that one.

    “No, this was not Obama’s fault. This was the fault of the Bush administration.”

    Of course it was! 🙂

    “All the waterboarding in the world wouldn’t have stopped this incident if he was still allowed to get on the plane with a bomb.”

    If you had specific information, which could come from waterboarding or say an intercepted phone call, that a Nigerian man named Abdulmutallab was carrying a bomb and was at a Dutch airport on Christmas, and planned to fly to Detroit, even the Obama security team might have stopped him.

    sleepygirl,

    “I’m sorry, Alan, but the use of torture and illegal spying on Americans id not going to make us safer. The use of actual intelligence efforts will.”

    I do not consider it torture. If I were in charge this Abdulmutallab guy actually would have been tortured for trying to mass murder almost 300 souls. There are probably thousands of human robots like him wandering around. If you could get information on his handlers, through any means, it would save lives. I am also amazed that you think listening in on conversations between the US and the Middle East, would yield no useful intelligence. Considering that there have to be many living here like Major Hassan who were in contact with Middle Eastern terrorists. You and Obama are swimming in a river named de nile.

    • [If you had specific information, which could come from waterboarding or say an intercepted phone call,]

      We had information. His own father said he was a threat. How much more information do we need to keep an eye on this guy? The problem was human error. Whoever looked at the warning signs f*cked up by not recognizing him as a serious threat. There needs to be a thorough investigation so it doesn’t happen again.

      As far as torturing someone for information… You can torture someone into confessing to almost anything.

    • Alan, the vast majority of security and intelligence experts agree that waterboarding is torture, and as such, is completely unreliable. There are moral reasons for not torturing people, or course, but there are also practical reasons. IT DOESN’T WORK. Like Ben said, when you use torture as an interrogation technique, the prisoner will say just about anything to make it stop. Most of the “intelligence” we got as a result of torturing prisoners at Gitmo was false. Wasting time torturing people for false information does not keep America safe.

  4. Mr. Hoffman, sleepygirl,

    I guess the people running the water boarding sessions are as stupid as the people who do not follow up on fathers tipping off intelligence and Embassy personnel about their terrorist sons.

    “Wasting time torturing people for false information does not keep America safe.”

    Not being as obviously informed as you all, it still occurs to me that any intelligence you receive would logically get checked against other sources. There have been reports of terrorist plots that were uncovered directly from information received from terrorists who were water boarded. Obviously these reports are false, based on your vast knowledge of the questioning of terrorists.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: