Saturday, May 08, 2010

Our State of Mind

Flanked by His Better Half
(Image Ubiquitous)

My cyberfriend Malcolm Pollack is puzzled by something that I've also been reflecting upon, and we're not the only ones, for Jonah Goldberg over at NRO has been dwelling on it as well -- namely, Faisal Shahzad's apparent incompetence, despite being trained by a sophisticated terrorist network, that deserves to earn such a headline as:
"Super-sophisticated terrorist network plants half-assed dud in Times Square"
That's Goldberg's humorous line, but his question was a serious one, and a lot of readers replied with a suggestion about Shahzad's state of mind that Goldberg just doesn't buy:
A bunch of readers think the obvious answer is that he was simply stupid. I don't buy it. First, he apparently had two college degrees . . . .
Stop right there! Two college degrees? One wasn't enough? That ought to tell us something. I knew already from 35 years' experience in academia that standards had gone down, but Shahzad's incompetence shows just how bad grade inflation has become! That half-assed dude in Times Square should serve as a warning -- not that our homeland security has failed but that our schools have.

Bring back educational standards, and we'll see fewer embarrassing failures of this sort!

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At 7:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

His degrees are from the University of Bridgeport, which is supposed to be a pretty bad school.

Also, the University of Bridgeport is apparently affiliated with the Rev. Sun Myung Moon.

At 7:50 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

And they let guys like that work on Wall Street! No wonder the 'smart' money ran the banks broke.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 8:54 AM, Blogger Hathor said...

I think he went through the motions, because he had changed his mind, but needed to appease his trainers. Just wasn't smart enough to not get caught. That picture looks as if he could give a damn about Jihad.

At 9:01 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Hathor, that's entirely possible, and I would hope that's the case.

Another possibility is that the Islamists want to provoke an American overreaction to something that almost happened.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 12:56 PM, Blogger Sperwer said...

When is a bomb a "dude"?

At 1:02 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

When he bombs out at a simple task (and I see that you caught my little wordplay).

Jeffery Hodges

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At 7:48 AM, Blogger John B said...

He was an MBA -- that pretty much explains it all right there.

At 7:52 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

I used to think that of MBAs, but over the years, I've come to see that they're no more ignorant than the typical MA . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 6:47 PM, Blogger Charles Montgomery said...

As a typical MA I'm just glad I'm rather too dense to understand HJH's point!

At 7:49 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Speaking as one with a degree 'piled higher and deeper', I plead even greater ignorance than the usual MBA, the typical MA, or the atypical whatever.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 8:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess you're 'right' that people don't really write anymore or in my case - comment - since after I read this post I laughed in appreciation (well, chuckled, I guess) and then started to look for the "like" button that Facebook uses. Gah.

Well, I liked this post. And thats mot just a plati*dude* or a *balm*!


At 8:34 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Thanks, Melissa. I see that you're now Astro Boy. Please save the world. Wait a sec . . . maybe it ain't worth saving.

Jeffery Hodges

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