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“No Finger Pointing”

In the wake of the security meltdown that nearly led to a Christmas Day disaster on an incoming international flight, President Obama scolded the American intelligence community and said that in his search for answers he would not tolerate finger pointing.  Shifting the blame after all is just a sign of your own incompetence and lack of accountability, right?  You know, like spending the first year of your administration blaming all the country’s problems on your predecessor…that kind of thing.

It’s probably no coincidence that Barry has developed his new-found aversion to finger-pointing at a time when he’s on the receiving end of most of the pointing.  Columnist L. Gordon Crovitz makes a good argument that the fault for the latest intelligence “screw-up” lies in the administration’s insistence on pursuing the War on Terror as a criminal matter, applying to intelligence-gathering the “reasonable suspicion” standards created to protect American citizens from unlawful searches.  It’s an approach that prevents intelligence agencies from taking action on “mere hunches,” as for example the hunch that perhaps an Army major with militant jihadist views just might be a threat to his fellow soldiers, or that a Nigerian father’s warning about his nutjob son — coupled, mind you, with previously gathered warnings of an Al Queada attack to be carried out by a Nigerian operative — might be enough to keep the man in question off a plane, or at least search him before boarding.

Maybe the real problem is that there’s not enough finger-pointing.  As in “that guy over there looks dangerous,” or “that one fits the profile.”  Instead we spend billions on TSA employees and scanning devices to see through clothes, but only pull aside grannies and women with babies to search and scan, lest we be accused of profiling.  It’s a gutless, half-hearted approach to “security” and it gets the results you’d expect.

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