SO now a couple of weeks have gone by, and the details of the "terrorist" attack are starting to come out, and surprise surprise, it was a bunch of hype for nothing. Of all the people arrested, only half have been charged with anything, five have already been released, and authorities are unconvinced that they were even capable of actually accomplishing, and the "ten planes" was complete and utter speculation.
Total evidence found (no, I'm not making this up):
a plastic bin filled with liquid
less than a dozen empty drink bottles
a disposable camera
some suicide vidoes
a copy of a book called "Defense of the Muslim Lands"
a last will of testament
That this sorry collection of crap was able to throw everyone into such a panic shows the depths of the irrational fear that has permeated everyone. Now for a little perspective.
Americans killed by terrorist attacks invoving aircraft since Sep 11, 2001: 3,300 (estimated).
Average American deaths per year by
suicide - 30,000
incidents involving firearms - 29,000
car accidents - 26,347
toxic agents - 55,000
microbial agents - 75,000
alcohol - 85,000
poor diet and obesity - 365,000
tobacco - 435,000
Every time we overreact, the terrorists win. Every time they say "jump" and we launch ourselves into orbit with panic, the terrorists win. Every time we allow ourselves to forget the real issues of our society - poverty, unemployment, lack of education, lack of adequate health care, racism, violent crime and a zillion other things that actually affect us each and every day, because we are driven into a panic by some implausible threat that has essentially zero probability of ever affecting us, the politicians exploiting our fears win.
Right now they have power over us, and the only way to take that power away from them is to stop being afraid.
NYTimes article on British "terror" suspects - linky
previous post showing the etymology of those statistics - linky
wired.com article with some examples of how stupid we have become - linky