Maybe It’s Just Me…

…but does this story remind you of a bad movie plot?

The American authorities have arrested four Georgia men accused of plotting to buy explosives and produce a deadly biological toxin to attack US citizens and government officials.

OK, that sounds pretty serious, but it’s the characters that make this sound like something out of Hollywood.

The men are Frederick Thomas, 73, from Cleveland; Dan Roberts, 67; Ray H Adams, 65; and Samuel J. Crump, 68, all from Toccoa.

The terrorist, anti-government version or Red, perhaps? Or maybe Space Cowboys?

A bunch of Grumpy Old Men sitting around a table, pissed off at the government, planning on being nationally feared terrorists. At their age? C’mon. This strains credibility. I just wonder how much encouragement they got from the spies acting as informants?

Don’t get me wrong. I think homegrown terrorism is just as dangerous, if not more so, than the Islamic variety. And also more likely to succeed. It is usually motivated by a misplaced sense of patriotism – they call it “love of country” – mixed with a little Christian fundamentalism and seasoned with racism, bigotry and misogyny. Such a mixture can be unpredictable and volatile (see Timothy McVeigh), but often times it really is just a bunch of good ole boys feeling their oats and acting on their alcoholic and testosteronic fueled feelings of impotence in a society and economy that’s grinding them down.

And the government that sends in spies and informants may simply exacerbate the process, rather than dampen it, in an effort to justify an ever-enlarging Big Brother presence in our lives, not to mention the massive budget to maintain it. Much like war in the middle east, it takes on a life of its own, in an effort to become self-perpetuating.

So excuse me if I seem a little cynical about a bunch of septi- and sexagenarians plotting a little mayhem. I doubt these guys had either the ability or the chemical know-how to manufacture moonshine, much less ricin.

(And apologies to those guys in the picture. They are not the same guys from the news story. Wait! Is that Abe Vigoda in the middle?)

7 thoughts on “Maybe It’s Just Me…

  1. SI, I’m equally concerned with the government cynically using every opportunity to tighten the screws on civil liberties. However, have you so soon forgotten this story? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/06/10/holocaust-museum-shooting_n_213831.html

    Don’t forget, we are living longer and longer. 65 these days is more like what a 40 year old was a century ago. In fact, with all the libido-enhancing treatments now available for older males, we might take a hard look at some unintended consequences that may ensue. Young, sexually enthralled males have traditionally caused the vast majority of mayhem in society. Will older males with a forceful libido commit more violent acts than were previously seen in that age group? I don’t know, but it bears watching.

    None of this is to say that we shouldn’t be vigilant in guarding our liberties, regardless of crime rates. People who would kowtow to an authoritarian regime at the first sign of danger are disgusting.

    • It was the unchecked skeptic in me that wrote that post. There is no problem with healthy skepticism. The police do a relatively good job preventing crimes, which is a better way to experience a crime, if you think about it – before it happens. I just think we shouldn’t automatically accept every press release saying we stopped another terrorist attack. And this one had a bad smell to it.

  2. Hell, I don’t feel like blowing anything up, not even the rubber doll cousin Henry sent last Christmas.

    As for the feds, I’d like to think that they would have the sense to spend their time trying to talk these guys out of their visions of exploding buildings rather than trying to suck them in deeper. It’d be a lot cheaper. Scare ’em off, if nothing else. Feeding a delusion should be a crime. Puts me in mind of our mighty police warriors who send SWAT teams (or wannabe SWAT teams) to kick down doors in pursuit of a couple of ounces of marijuana so they can go on TV and proclaim the mighty work they’ve done saving us from evil drugs.

    Oh, fuck it. Let’s just go blow things up. The Koch brothers got any assets nearby?

    • The Koch brothers got any assets nearby?

      Got any local Georgia-Pacific facilities nearby?

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