Police: Second explosive found in record cache in San Diego County

This is a discussion on Police: Second explosive found in record cache in San Diego County within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Originally Posted by Hopyard GM do you know what Wiki is? We aren't talking about Wikileaks here. We are talking about the online encyclopedia. It ...

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Thread: Police: Second explosive found in record cache in San Diego County

  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hopyard View Post
    GM do you know what Wiki is? We aren't talking about Wikileaks here. We are talking about the online encyclopedia. It ain't perfect as an encylopediia but it is a good place to grab some quick generally correct information.
    And, lots of the 250 incidents that they listed some were not bombing incidents but other acts of domestic terrorism. e.g., guy flying a small plane into an IRS building.

    I'm just saying, get it in perspective. Other than Ted K the Unibomber and McCrazy the OK City bomber, really how many incidents have been significant in their magnitude or effect.

    Again, want to remain free be a little brave and be a little smart about not getting pushed into a panic over an ordinary incident of some lunatic getting caught with bombs or bomb making materials. It happens. It has happened in the past. It has happened throughout our history. Look up anarchists circa WWI. Get a grip.
    That is exactly what I meant, the online encyclopedia. Wiki can be a good start point when searching information, but that is it; Wiki should not be considered a reliable source of information. In the academic world it is often prohibited to use it as a cited source in papers; the reasons are that the information there can be edited at any point, it is often biased, does not have all the facts, or it is just wrong.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GM View Post
    That is exactly what I meant, the online encyclopedia. Wiki can be a good start point when searching information, but that is it; Wiki should not be considered a reliable source of information. In the academic world it is prohibited to use it as a cited source in papers; the reasons are that the information there can be edited at any point, it is often biased, does not have all the facts, or it is just wrong.
    GM, we aren't in the academic world here; and yes if you are publishing an academic paper you would not cite secondary and tertiary sources in most instances. OTOH, just because something finds its way into a peer reviewed manuscript doesn't make it truth either. (There is plenty of very foolishly wrong stuff published in the top 300 bio-sci journals every month; much of it laughable except that the authors and reviewers took it seriously. And definitely this problem exists across many disciplines. It is horrendous in the psychology and psychiatric literature.)

    So, back to the point--- Wiki is decent ENOUGH for our general discussions to be a starting point for getting useful information.

    The question at hand was -- how many crazies are out there doing the same or similar thing to the dude in CA?

    No one knows of course, but we can get guestimates based on the historical number of incidents which have actually occurred, arrests which have actually occurred.

    Wiki said 250 incidents of domestic terrorism pre-9/11 over a 20 year period from 1980-2000. That is about 1 per month basically.

    Moving from there, how many were truly significant in scope, damage caused, disorder caused, number of individuals seriously hurt of killed? Real disruptions caused. Far fewer. Again McNut in OK and Kazinski come to mind as about the only really significant ones.

    There have always been nut cases, always been violent people, and there always will be. What is important is to keep it in perspective. What are our individual chances of becoming a victim of one of these? How many of all the people who have ever lived in the US were ever harmed by such?

    Hard figures are difficult to come by, but whatever they are they seem to me to be sufficiently rare that I'm not going to be worrying about someone bombing a shoe store when I get out later. I'm certainly not going to be gingerly opening my mail box fearing that someone left an unpleasant package in there. The chances are higher that some dumb-a... kiddo in the 14 year age would put a snake in there.

    Why am I belaboring this and making a big deal about it? Because, if you read the other threads where TSA searches are being discussed you will come to realize that we have allowed very very very very rare events to drive the spending of tens of billions of dollars and the inconvenience of hundreds of millions of people; if not billions.

    There are always reasonable safety precautions which we take, keep a fire extinguisher in the house for example, set up a CO monitor, and over the top reactions-- digging cement bunkers in our back yards seems a bit over the top. What TSA has done is now over the top.

    If we want to retain our freedom we have to be just a tiny bit brave. They way we are going as a society we won't be "the land of the free" ONLY because we have decided to not be "the home of the brave." We have decided --from panic and emotional exaggeration of the threats we face--to let the tiny chance of rare events drive our everyday decision making and behavior.

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    Senior Member Array Phillep Harding's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hopyard View Post
    As I wrote in other threads, I am aware of only one incident where a US airliner (domestic transit within the US) was actually bombed.
    Actually, there were probably more than that. I stumbled over a list of all commercial aircraft bombs, and there was (globally) one or more every year, up until about 1968. Most of the bombs were dynamite. Can't find the URL now, of course.

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    Think of the potential injuries or loss of life with just the HMTD if not for this gardener getting into it and uncovering it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phillep Harding View Post
    Actually, there were probably more than that. I stumbled over a list of all commercial aircraft bombs, and there was (globally) one or more every year, up until about 1968. Most of the bombs were dynamite. Can't find the URL now, of course.
    That's not what he said. He commented on domestic transit within the US, not global.

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    Some people are just plain crazy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by highvoltage View Post
    That's not what he said. He commented on domestic transit within the US, not global.
    Thank you, but to defend Philep Harding too, he specified pre-1968. Back then there were a huge number of petty dictators all over the globe and coup attempts, revolutions, counter revolutions were all the rage. I am trying however to think back to that time and I do not actually recall any particular sense of urgency or concern about airlines being bombed anywhere. Hijacking at the point of a knife or a gun was the major fear. So, how come we were brave back then and not now? We didn't institute any counter measures in the form of airport screening until sometime after in early 1970s. I distinctly recall traveling through airports sans searches back then.

    We have indeed gotten on that slippery slope and are still skidding downhill.

    But as for nut jobs as this one making bombs in his home, they have always lived amongst us. What amazes me is that his wife, upon his arrest, stated to the police that he was crazy, but she never acted on that belief to turn him in. Lucky her he didn't do anything more or she could be an accessory.

    Finally, the crime of possessing bomb making materials is relatively new. They don't sell educational "chemistry sets" in the stores any longer, and haven't for a long long time, but being an amateur chemist did have its risks. I actually knew a guy (in fact he helped me get the job I retired from) who had only one arm. Despite his accident as a youth, he indeed grew up to be a chemist. (For any Aussies reading, I don't mean pharmacist.)

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