Boston: Three Tries to Get the Right Question
As the individual and media coverage ramped up, it became pretty clear who would be hurt by the marathon bombings, and that led me to wonder who would benefit. In retrospect, not a particularly insightful question though my answers were the gun lobby and the safety industry.
As with the multiple stabbings a few weeks ago here was another instance in which guns did not kill people, people killed people. A bit more air out of a legislative balloon in Congress that already seems to be sinking fast.
Those who provide security — or in the case of governments mandate it — will benefit because demand for their “its for your safety” services will increase.
At best, these were cynical and not particularly insightful answers to the not-particularly-insightful question.
This led to “who thinks he will benefit” from making the effort to load gun powder, nails and ball bearings into double boilers then back packs to kill and maim a couple of hundred unidentifiable people? A universe of nut cases and whack jobs was revealed though timing the explosions to happen just when the average runners with greater numbers of family fans would be at the finish line was insidious enough to eliminate the craziest of the crazies.
The question I should have asked was, “who will exploit it?” The usual suspects include those who predictably grapple to appear the most heartfelt, the better to call attention to their superior heartfeltedness. But, as in the event itself, there were winners in this despicable race to the bottom.
According to Politico, in a story entitled Boston Marathon Bombing: Congress reacts, Dems talk sequester, “With the Boston Marathon bombings less than 24 hours old, some on Capitol Hill are beginning to say the attack shows why Congress should’ve stopped automatic spending cuts from taking hold in March.”
Leave aside the idea that cuts beginning in March would have no effect by mid-April and let the quotes speak for themselves.
“House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), responding to a question at a Tuesday morning press conference, said the bombings are ‘clearly another place where it demonstrates why having the ability to address security concerns is important. I think there are multiple reasons for ensuring that we invest in our security both domestic and international security. That we invest in the education of our children, that we invest in growing jobs in America and don’t pursue any irrational policy of cutting the highest priorities and the lowest priorities by essentially the same percentage.’” [Please note the quotes and don’t blame me for those hideous sentences.]
“Rep. Xavier Becerra of California, the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, said ‘the first responders working Monday aren’t sheltered from cuts. We have to send you less money to help your first responders.’”
Authorities have identified the three people killed in the blast as 8-year-old Martin Richard, 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, and Lu Lingzi, a BU graduate student from China. About 200 others were injured and all deserved far better than they got from Congressman Hoyer and Congressman Becerra. Both showed that they would miss no opportunity to seek political advantage.
Our lives might change as a result of the marathon bombings but it seems the Congress will not.