Friday, January 16, 2009
Heroic US Air Pilot Profiled
Nice to see a hero being celebrated for a change
The pilot of Flight 1549 was Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger III, 57, of Danville, Calif., an official familiar with the accident told The Associated Press. Sullenberger is a former fighter pilot who runs a safety consulting firm in addition to flying commercial aircraft.
Sullenberger, who has flown for US Airways since 1980, flew F-4 fighter jets with the Air Force in the 1970s. He then served on a board that investigated aircraft accidents and participated later in several National Transportation Safety Board investigations.
Sullenberger had been studying the psychology of keeping airline crews functioning even in the face of crisis, said Robert Bea, a civil engineer who co-founded UC Berkeley's Center for Catastrophic Risk Management.
Bea said he could think of few pilots as well-situated to bring the plane down safely than Sullenberger.
The pilot "did a masterful job of landing the plane in the river and then making sure that everybody got out," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. "He walked the plane twice after everybody else was off, and tried to verify that there was nobody else on board, and he assures us there was not."
In the minutes after takeoff, the pilot managed to maneuver past the skyscrapers of Manhattan and into the crowded Hudson River, even though the engines were disabled after apparently hitting a flock of geese.
Passengers said the plane was vibrating violently and the cabin began to fill with smoke. To reach its splashdown spot, witnesses said the jet glided over the George Washington Bridge before plopping into the water.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
20th Hijacker 'Tortured'
Says a judge
The top Bush administration official in charge of deciding whether to bring Guantanamo Bay detainees to trial has concluded that the U.S. military tortured a Saudi national who allegedly planned to participate in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, interrogating him with techniques that included sustained isolation, sleep deprivation, nudity and prolonged exposure to cold, leaving him in a "life-threatening condition."
Jules Crittenden comes up with a good response; only use techniques
which have been approved by liberal bloggers:
Throwing heavy objects at people, for example. It would normally considered a criminal act, and certainly was not authorized treatment of U.S. detainees at any time during the last troubled eight years. But in the wake of the Muntader al-Shoedi Brogan-chucking incident, throwing things has been embraced by the Arab world and the American Left as a legitimate form of speech. Consequently, it would seem there is no reasonable barrier to talking to people in this manner as part of a responsible, humane effort to encourage them to see the errors of their ways.
In other news, all those "completely innocent" people
who were swept up to Gitmo and eventually released?
Terror suspects who have been held but released from Guantanamo Bay are increasingly returning to the fight against the United States and its allies, the Pentagon said today.
Sixty-one detainees who have been released from the U.S. Navy base prison in Cuba are believed to have rejoined the fight, Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said. That is up from 37 previously, Morrell said.
Of course, the bleeding hearts will claim that their adoption of terrorism stems from their treatment at Guantanamo.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Liberal Dope at the White House
One month after the worst attack in U.S. history, George W. Bush watched a 100-minute-long Anthony Hopkins film called Hearts in Atlantis.
It is an awful movie, and as it drags on I feel increasingly uneasy. Surely the president should be doing something else. Occasionally he gets a phone call from Andy Card, his chief of staff, who, as I understand it, is in the West Wing meeting with the head of the F.A.A. to determine when Washington’s Reagan National Airport will be safe to completely re-open (some flights began operating earlier in the week). Each time the phone rings, I hope the president will excuse himself to join them. But he doesn’t. Over the phone, the president tells the men to “get that airport opened up!” and then heads to bed.
That night I leave the White House feeling more anxious about our national security than when I arrived.
Of course, national security did not suffer during the Bush Administration. He seems to think that the president should be running around like a demon, opening the airport himself.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
The Cardinals One Game from the Super Bowl?
Good lord, I never thought this would happen. I root for the Cardinals, but refuse to live and die with the team, because there's too much dying. When they first moved to the Valley in 1988, I remember a friend insisting that he was going to bleed Cardinal red from then on. I told him that he'd better get some transfusions ready, because he was about to do a lot of bleeding.
The Cardinals back then were clearly one of the worst NFL franchises in history. You could make an argument for the Tampa Bay Bucs, but even the Bucs in only 13 seasons had the same number of postseason victories (1) as the Cardinals. And they have not exactly covered their time in Arizona in glory. This is only the second time (in 21 years) that they have had a winning record. It was noted that this was the first time since 1975 that they had won their division.
I'll be rooting for the Iggles this afternoon, because if that happens, the Cardinals will host the NFC Championship. But if past history is any indication, the Cardinals, in a game they should win, will lose. Sorry, but out here we're pretty fatalistic about the team.