Cooper woke me up before the nightmare did. He caught me square in the shin with a jerking kick and I bolted up, my heart hammering like a small demon trying to break through my ribcage. Already the dream had slipped from my mind, leaving nothing behind but my wrecked nerves. Cooper twitched and ground his teeth. Sweat plastered his curly black hair against his forehead, and his tattooed arms shook as he crushed the pillow against his chest.

     I wanted to hold him close, wake him up. I hated seeing the man I loved in that kind of pain. It didn't matter that he was the teacher and I his apprentice. But I knew he'd lash out at anyone near him when he came out of the dream. So I wiped the sweat out of my eyes and scooted away from him on the bed.

     "Cooper," I called. My throat felt like it was lined with steel wool, and I could taste pennies where I'd bitten the inside of my lip. "Wake up."

     No response.

     My heart was slowing, finally, but my hands still shook as I wiped my eyes again.  I'd never had nightmares before I started sleeping with Cooper. The first couple of times we'd both gotten bad dreams the same night, I dismissed it as coincidence. But after a dozen nights? It was pretty clear that the terror I saw in his fractured sleep mirrored the terror fading inside my own head.

     We were having the same damn nightmare ... and lately I was having it whether I was sleeping beside him or not.

     He writhed and groaned.

     Cooper's white fox terrier, Smoky, was cowering under my computer desk, whining. The dog was giving me a scared look: Wake him up before something bad happens. I'd seen the dog take on creatures ten times his seventeen pounds when he thought his master was in danger; the dog had once torn the ear off an ogrish no-neck who was preparing to brain Cooper with a tire iron in a bar parking lot. But when the nightmare came on, fierce little Smoky was helpless.

     I could hear the rustling of my 6-month-old ferret racing around in his cage in the corner.

     What's going on inside your head? I wondered, staring down at Cooper.

     I slid off the bed, took a deep breath and let loose a shout that shook the floor: "Cooper!"

     He jerked awake, arms windmilling, punching the air, kicking the sheet off the bed. "No, I won't, I won't, get away from me --"

     "Cooper, calm down! You're okay, you're okay."

     "What? Where -- where am I?" he gasped, staring around in the dimness.

     "In our apartment. Remember?" I climbed back onto the bed and crawled to him across the twisted bedclothes.

     "J-jessie?" he stammered, his eyes finally seeming to focus. "Oh, man am I glad to see you."

     He caught me in a strong hug and kissed me. His naked skin was slick with sweat, and beneath his usual pleasantly garlicky smell was the faint, sharp odor of brimstone. Smoky padded out from under the desk and hopped up onto the bed.

     "Are you okay?" I asked.

     "Yeah. Think so. Dream can't really hurt me, right? I can't even remember what it was all about." He laughed nervously and patted Smoky's smooth head. "Serves me right for falling asleep when I didn't need to."

     "You almost never get enough sleep."

     I chose to ignore the little voice inside my head reminding me that I, too, had been going without. When things got bad, I'd been taking sleeping pills to blunt the dreams. But not very often; the drugs left me groggy and stupid the next day.

     "Hmm, much sense you make, young Jedi," he said. "But sensible man I am not."

     He stretched, his spine popping. I couldn't help but admire the play of muscles across his lean torso. He was thirty-eight, but easily passed for thirty; there wasn't an ounce of fat on him. Some dumb relationship calculator I'd found online -- the kind that divides your age by two and adds seven years and tells you that's the youngest you can date -- said that I wasn't old enough for him.

     I know I'm immature in some ways, but inside me there's a cranky old lady yelling at the damn kids to get off her lawn. She's been there a while. I've decided to call her Mabel. 

     When I was a teenager, most of the other girls got on my very last nerve -- all the stuff they obsessed over just seemed stupid and trivial to me. I mean, seriously, who gives a shit about what shade of eye shadow to wear to a pep rally?  I'd rather skip the whole thing and read a book. I thought Ohio State would be better than high school, but mostly it was just bigger.

     Maybe I'd have felt different about things if my mom hadn't died when I was eleven. After she was gone, there was nobody around to make me feel particularly excited about makeup and shoe shopping. I started the existential angst early, started feeling like I was way older than the other kids, and that never got better. The day I turned twenty-three, I felt ancient, even with Cooper there to celebrate with me.

     Cooper, on the other hand, is nothing if not bubbling with youthful energy. He could be fifty and would still be hotter than half the twentysomething guys I've met. Of course, most of the guys I've seen at OSU would only have six-packs if they bought them at the 7-11. And the boys I've dated didn't have Cooper's brains, or his heart, or his guts. And his Southerly anatomy isn't too shabby, either. Top that with him being the real thing when it comes to magic ... well, whoever made the relationship calculator can kiss my rosy pink butt.

     "What time is it?" he asked.

     "A little past nine -- the sun's just gone down."

     Cooper rubbed his face and scratched his chin through his short dark goatee. "How's the sky?"

     "Dry. The nearest cloud is in Indiana, I think."    

     "Well, then it's time for us to earn our rent money." He reached over the side of the bed to retrieve his jeans. "Three thousand from the farmers for a nice little rainstorm -- not a bad payment for a night's work, huh?"

     The doorbell rang downstairs.

     "I'll get it," Cooper said, slipping on his Levis.

     He thumped downstairs. I peeled off my sweat-soaked tee shirt and panties, tossed them in the hamper, then started digging through the dresser for some fresh clothes. Everything in there was a hopeless jumble, but at least it was clean. A year back, Cooper pissed off a sylph and she nixed all his housecleaning charms; it took us forever to get our laundry mojo working again. As curses go that one was pretty minor -- probably the faery equivalent of writing on your face in Sharpie marker while you're passed out -- but there are few things more embarrassing to a modern witch or wizard than being forced to use a Laundromat.

     I heard the front door creak open, and then our neighbor's cheerful greeting: "Hey, man, everything okay over here? I heard someone holler."

     "Hey, Bo," replied Cooper. "Yeah, we're fine, sorry if we disturbed you."

     "Oh, ain't no thing, just makin' sure you folks is okay," Bo replied. "Miz Sanchez brought me some of her tamales earlier 'cos I fixed her tire, and she told me to make sure you folks got a couple dozen."

     I heard a paper grocery bag rattle open. "Hey, these smell great," said Cooper. "That was really nice of her."

     "She's real grateful for what you two done for her little girl."

     I clearly remembered the afternoon Mrs. Sanchez was running from door to door, panicked to near incoherence because her 6-year-old daughter had disappeared from the apartment complex's pool. Cooper knew enough Spanish to ask for one of the girl's dolls. After that it was easy enough to go back to the privacy of our apartment and cast a spell to track the kid's spirit to the other side of the complex. We found the little girl in a run-down garden apartment. Thankfully, she was okay; the creepy old pedophile who rented the place hadn't done anything more than feed her ice cream.

     Once the girl was safe with her mother -- and no one the wiser that we'd used magic to find her -- I called the cops on my cell phone while Cooper impressed upon the old man that he was never, ever to go near a child again. The old guy was so frightened by Cooper that he practically raced to the police cruiser like jail was going to be some kind of safe haven.

     Cooper can be pretty fierce when he gets angry. To me, that's one of his sexiest traits. It's not just about being able to tear the house down; it's about being willing to do it in a heartbeat to protect the people who genuinely need your help.

     "Anyone would've done the same," said Cooper. "Please be sure to thank her for us."

We bomb
you a little

{and so}

you bomb
us a lot

{and so}

net result
more believers

{and so}

a win win
for both teams

apart perhaps
for the people of it.

Sometimes you have to do something for a really long time before you realize what an idiot you are. I have had one of those moments today.

The thing of it is, until you reach that moment when you realize you're an idiot, you keep thinking, nah, I'm not an idiot. I'm just doggedly persistent. So you keep going. Your idiocy is patently obvious to others, but you, in your self delusional cloud, you think to yourself that it's a sweet little problem, that you have to keep worrying it, like some little Jack Russell terrier who knows no better, until your problem yields a solution.

By you, I mean me. You have more sense than I do, and are probably not prone to attempting to solve these problems with the same obsessiveness that I am.

The thing is, and here's where the ratiocination kicks in, I'm pretty well educated. But that is a blessing and a curse. It's mostly a curse. I should know better. I know that you can't invent a perpetual motion machine. Violates the second law of thermodynamics. I know that you can't go backward in time. Violates a whole bunch of statistical mechanics equations and Gibbsean phase space and blah blah. I'm pretty sure there's no God - as Laplace said, "I have no need for that hypothesis." And so this self delusion sets in. Nothing can fool me. I can smell bullshit, and I can smell a good problem, and I know they smell differently.

Der Mensch denkt, und Gott lenkt. Man plans, and God laughs. Or something like that. My German mother was very fond of saying that. No doubt she knew what grandiose castles I was building in my mind's eye.

So today in my random walk through Euclidean geometry I was randomly walking through something called the power of a point theorem, which Euclid proved, oh, 3000 years ago - Book III, Proposition 35 - and that led me to the subject of apothems and regular polygons, and then I started working on a problem that took me most of the day, which I've just now finished, and feel like an idiot because it can't be solved, which I have known since i was about 20, which was like 37 years ago (before man invented the Internet and twittering and video games, so it was impossibly long ago), but did that stop me? No. Because I'm an idiot.

The question I posed to myself was that if you have a circle of radius 1, and inside this circle you build a regular polygon having N sides, what's the side length of the polygon?

For N = 3, you have an equilateral triangle, and the edge length is √3. For N = 4, a square, the edge length is √2. This looks pretty easy, you tell yourself. And so you keep going.

Then you hit N = 5, a pentagon, and you do a few pages of tiny scribbling and you give up in despair, and you say, fuck this, N = 5 is what's known as a bitch, in technical parlance. So you move on to N = 6, which is absurdly easy. E = 1. One! Ha ha ha! Ridiculous! And easy to boot! Press on! You're invincible!

Then worry when you hit N = 7, because 7 is prime, and because primes in geometry usually wind up making proofs and calculations painful. In geometry, when you see a 7, your face starts twitching. Mine did, and so I moved on to N = 8. Mama didn't raise no fool. I'll do the low hanging fruit first, then get back to the hard problems later.

I spent 15 or 20 minutes diddling with N = 8, until I remembered a mathematician's favorite trick: If you can't solve a harder problem directly, you link it to a simpler problem which you can solve. The guy who solved the cubic equation did this. He turned it into a quadratic equation, which he knew how to solve, (kinda sorta... the details are in any math handbook), and voila! So I did N = 8 by turning it into a scaled version of N = 4. And it turns out that it's a nice little bit of recursion.

For any even numbered N, the edge length EN2 = 2 - √{4 - EN/22}. You can show this with about 1/2 page of algebra, if you know the trick. So for N = 8, I already know E4 = √2, so I use the formula to get E8 = √{2 - √2}. I can then do E16 = √{2 - √{2 + √2}}, which is a tad bit gruesome. Nevertheless, if you've done this a few times, you're not very keen on finding E32 or E64 unless you have a good CAS system to do it for you. It's going to involve a train of radicals within radicals.

OK I lied. I added this bit a day after writing this daylog, just for posterity's sake. When N is a power of 2, EN has the very pretty form that is evident when you do a few of the lower powers:

E4 = √2

E8 = √{2 - √2}

E16 = √{2 - √{2 + √2}}

E32 = √{2 - √{2 + √{2 + √{2}}}

E64 = √{2 - √{2 + √{2 + √{2 + √{2}}}}

BUT - you've done it. Furthermore, since you know E3, you can in principle compute any even multiple of 3, to get E6, E12, etc.

It's also easy to know if you're in the right path or not. Whatever the edge length is, you multiply it by N, the number of edges, and the number should less than 2π, which is about 6.28, which is the circumference of a unit radius circle. The perimeter of your N sided regular polygon, N×EN, should be less than 6.28, but it should increase with N and should asymptotically approach 2π. If you tabulate N and EN, then the numbers should always be increasing. If they aren't, then you know you've fucked up somewhere. So there are built-in checks and balances when you do this. The point is, you know you're on the right path when you do a bunch of these cases and they make a pretty pattern, and are internally self-consistent and obey all the rules. When you fuck up, which I do plenty of times, you do some numerical examples so you know you're right or - in my case - wrong. Then you fix the problem and try again. Repeat until perfect. We nerds are nothing if not obsessive.

So I was sailing along pretty well, and the numbers were lining up pretty well, but... well, shit, but there are still all these holes. I got the exact value for E3, but I wasn't able to find any cool, easily used recursive formula for finding multiples of 3. And then what about those prime orders like 5? 7?


Fuckity fuck fuck fuck.

(When I get obsessive like this, I do two things. One is to swear almost constantly, usually under my breath, but sometimes out loud and in dramatic fashion. The other is to drink coffee. The cumulative effect is one of straight ahead cranking. When I make mistakes I swear loudly, get up from the desk, stomp around, make more coffee, get more cranked up, swear some more, whine and beg and plead to the gods of mathematics, pretend to be distracted by... what's this?... the Boston Marathon bombing? Well FUCKITY FUCK FUCK FUCK WHY CAN'T I DO N = 5?)

The pentagon frustrated the hell out of me, so I picked up Euclid, Coxeter, and a few other big geometry books, and no one had exactly what I was looking for. So I spent a few hours and maybe ten pages and a bunch of ink looking at N = 5. I knew how to construct a pentagon with compass and straightedge, but I didn't look very hard at this. Wikipedia had something that was pretty close to what I needed, and Coxeter had something too, but I had to really beat on it a bit to make it yield an answer. I wasn't happy until I had an answer that was an expression of radicals and the four basic math operations. It's ugly:

For N = 5, E5 =

             4√{ 5 + 2√5 }
             ---------------- = 1.1756...
               6 + 2√5

The glimmering of sunshine was beginning to make its appearance into my stupid head when I started on N = 7. I kept looking at the Wiki page, for which an approximate value was given. Nothing exact. By which I mean, nothing, nada, zippo, zilch. There did not appear to be an exact answer for N = 7. Let me say this in a positive way: The Wiki writers are usually a pretty sharp bunch. So if they leave a square blank, which in this case it was, for N = 7, that meant that IT WAS IMPOSSIBLE TO WRITE IN CLOSED FORM AN ALGEBRAIC EXPRESSION FOR CERTAIN VALUES OF N. Indeed, I seemed to hit on the only expression for high orders of N that were known, or at least are capable of being calculated by patzers like me. Then I looked at all prime values of N, and all of the squares were blank. No exact solutions. And then...

Somewhere around 1977 I was reading about Evariste Galois, the brilliant young French mathematician, a hothead, who scribbled out some very important ideas on group theory the night before a duel, a duel he knew he was going to lose. He was looking at attempts to solve polynomials of degrees higher than 5, using only the four basic operations plus radicals, and declared that they were insoluble for group theoretic reasons. It was exactly what I was working on, but I wasn't quite so perspicacious as young Galois, and consequently spent a lot of time for naught.

This is where you get the visual of me slapping my forehead with the palm of one hand, and loudly proclaiming myself to be an idiot. Nay, not just any idiot, but the grand idiot of all time. Facepalm. Headdesk. Headdesk. Stomp around. GRRR. Kick the dog, but the dog's already run away, cowering somewhere. Thank god I don't have a dog.

I wailed. There was much gnashing of teeth. I wasted so much time on something that I knew was impossible to solve! Idiot!

Galois would have laughed. Stupid American! He proved that I couldn't solve this about 250 years ago! Ha ha ha! Fool's mate!

All right, Johnny. There's your shitty first draft, and a pretty shitty second draft to boot!

God will always live in the gaps of science for some because science will always have more questions to answer than answers to the questions. As with evolution, our narrations of what happened are ripe with gaps, and people often attribute unrelated things to the proof of evolution like saying we share 98% of DNA with chimpanzees and a large portion with starfish as well, so we as humans must linked by a common ancestors and have evolved from sea creatures. There isn’t documented proof we came from apes or for that matter the ocean but it is widely accepted none the less. This information comes from building on what we know to bridge the gaps in our knowledge. These theories filling the gaps are not fallacy per se, just incomplete models unable to explain the magnitude of what is actually going on. Something deemed a mistake today could have been a beneficial adaption when the mutation was prevalent, an example would be an appendix or all the tiny bones in a human foot. Sometimes the animal produces a useless mutation (an extra appendage) or simply outlives the need of the previous mutation, when this happens it is not definitive proof of evolution it is only evidence or a precursor. I should also include that evolution may be gift from God, He most likely foresaw with Him being all knowing, a changing environment and a need for adaption.

I raised the question; if God exists and He created nature, then in turn did He not create radio waves and everything else. Even though, from humankind, I know where in nature the formation of these electromagnetic waves occur and where they lie on the spectrum, and I know how to recreate the waves or manipulate the waves myself, I still give credit where I feel credit is due. Yes, the idea that ‘if such and such is true than so and so much be true as well’ is a fallacy, but it is easily dismissed as one because we are incapable of explaining the forces acting in the universe with any clarity. The usage of the same fallacy is demonstrated when researchers say dark matter makes up the majority of the universe because this accounts for the missing mass they speculate should be there. If A equals B therefore C. These kinds of assumptions progress our understanding of reality, but as with all experimentation, we are all bound to believe some faulty ideas along the way. However, the theory that the sum of the human collective is greater than all it parts could be construed as a reference to being the supreme power, and therefore when it comes to disproving the existence of God, in any shape or form, it hasn’t been done yet. Crazy shit happens that science cannot explain just look at the influence of Phi in nature.

Now, an attack of character on the other hand, is a fallacy and more specifically, it is the fallacy Argumentum ad Hominem. Trying to discredit a statement through an attack of character in my mind means, you don’t have a leg to stand upon. By attacking the person, the truth behind an idea will never see enlightenment. We will always become stuck arguing over who the bigger idiot is while only using opinions as evidence. In addition, to dismiss a fallacy just because it is a fallacy is a hasty generalization, which is a fallacy unto itself and is an inductive argument because it is only probable and not guaranteed that the system of beliefs comes from those character flaws. In reality, a person called credulous, gullible and misinformed could have concluded the presentence of something greater after deliberating on many religions and personal life experiences.

Lastly, until someone can provide an excellent reason as to why gravity is somehow holding the entire universe together while it expands in every direction, or why gravity causes localized contractions --the formation of stars and planets— while still expanding, or all those other mysteries, I will continue to believe in God’s control over all things, perceivable and not. Which is a fallacy called Argumentum ad Ignorantiam, and is a false dichotomy because the two may not be related. I don’t even care if it is also a fallacy of begging to authority, because I feel even if we can find the glue holding everything together, it does not explain why it is held together. Just as spinning clusters of bubbles of soap in a sink of water, the universe was set into motion by something.

We may never be able to answer what God is or how God came into existence, but to say their isn’t a greater consciousness acting with intention is hard to believe. This is ‘the paper that became aware’ theory. In effect, by recording and observing intelligence, the record the mind creates becomes aware. This is indicative to the universe being God, and the multi-dimensions proposed through the sting theory are forms of consciousness and a record of every action. If so, anything is possible because we are conscious through God’s image or God’s projection.

Personally, I tend to believe in the idea of a grand architect, and not the idea everything came about through randomized collisions of subatomic particles. I choose to believe in something rather than nothing.

Good morning E2.

It's time to exercise my God-given American Freedom™ to speculate on some of the details of the recent Boston Marathon bombing.

There are a lot of talking heads babbling about the incident right now, but none of them to my knowledge have touched on a couple interesting tidbits, not even the "terror experts" or the "military analysts" that make the usual rounds with the big networks.

Most by now know that none of the major players in the overseas terror game have claimed responsibility, some (for example, the Tarikh-e-Taliban Pakistan, also known as Pakistani Taliban) have even run away screaming in the opposite direction as credit. I won't speculate on the identity of the perpetrator or perpetrators (right wing domestic! radical immigrant! greenpeace! zionist late abortion squads!) but I will discuss some of the things so far that have raised the hair on the back of my neck.

Keep in mind that I have no special plug-ins, no secret source of information; this is all based on the scant facts that have been released by the press so far, and are also colored heavily by my personal experience and judgement calls on some of the accuracy of the reporting.

First, and most worrying to me of all is, the placement and timing of the two bombs. They were set up in a classic anti-convoy configuration identical to some of the better tactics used by insurgents in Afghanistan for years.

Since the marathon proceeds along a fixed, known route, much like a convoy limited to a fixed road, it's logical that the same tactics would apply.

The initial charge was set at the finish line, the focal point for all of the runners coming up the final straightaway. The second charge at the entrance to that same final straightaway. The entrance to this final straightaway causes a bottleneck.

After the first small wave of runners passed the finish line, the first charge was blown, creating a massive distraction for the approaching runners; the intention of the attackers is to cause the runners to stop at the bottleneck, bunching up to create a better target. Runners coming up to the bottleneck also stop to see why everyone else has stopped, causing a pileup.

The military has evolved several techniques to counter this particular tactic, but they don't always work, and it's not as though the marathon runners were graced with the appropriate training.

The number of casualties seems to indicate that the technique worked as planned.

Second, certain indicators such as the shape of the blasts, the number of casualties, and the probably size of the charges, lead me to believe that the type of bombs used were not simple pipe bombs. The evidence leads me to believe that they are a type of anti-personnel IED very well known to me. They were almost certainly what are sometimes called "mini cauldrons", IEDs designed to cause a mostly directional blast of shrapnel, much like a very crude version of a claymore antipersonnel mine. They're called "mini" in comparison to their larger brothers, made of large cast iron bases that resemble, and are therefore called in several local languages, cauldrons.

Third, the photos and videos available of the actual blasts indicate that the explosive material used was a low order explosive, such as black powder or a homemade explosive (HME) like ANFO or similar. Some further thinking about ease of placement, situation, and probable physical size makes me think it was not a classic ANFO, but either commercial gunpowder or a dry ammonium nitrate mixture, probably excluding the more sophisticated types of HME, such as APAN, or Aluminum Powder Ammonium Nitrate.

ANFO really shines as an HME in larger quantities; it also has a distinct odor, usually of the fuel (typically diesel) that it's made with. Whoever placed them would have been forced to compromise. A dry ammonium nitrate mixture or a blackpowder or nitrocellulose (modern gunpowder) charge could easily have been the right size to fit into a photographer's backpack or other innocuous container that could be stashed in the appropriate places in the crowd of spectators.

All of the above indicates to me that the perpetrator, or perpetrators, are probably familiar with insurgent techniques, beyond something that a perusal of most widely available material would make feasible. The circumstances and the apparent characteristics of the bombs indicates a level of craftsmanship and sophistication to rival some of the best IEDs deployed worldwide.

The lack of a martyr tape, press release, or letters to the editor are scarier to me than if Mullah Omar was cackling all over CNN. With nobody specific to blame, I suppose they'll just have to turn the DHS lose.

Addendum: Some early reports this morning from FBI investigators confirm that they were low order explosives, and also that they were probably built using pressure cookers with additional metal shrapnel mixed in. This adds additional evidence that the bombs were indeed what I'd first thought. Used for about a decade by bombmakers in the Mid East and Southwest Asia, pressure cookers make a great housing for IEDs made with HME. By pointing the lid in the rough direction you with to spray with shrapnel, you can partially direct the blast with fragments of the lid and housing, and whatever additional shrapnel you've mixed in with the charge.

Addendum 2: FBI reports from late Tuesday indicate that the bombs were, in fact, constructed for a directional blast; were triggered with relatively sophisticated electronics; and were probably concealed inside a backpack or photographers bag (!) given the shreds of black nylon found at the scene.

A lot of people (this isn't a jab at Mr. Fish, below) seem to think I'm implying that extremist Muslims were somehow responsible. As I mentioned explicitly above, I'm not intending to do that at all. But my gut tells me that it wasn't radical Islam. No credit claiming, for one; most of the usual suspects as far as Islamic extremism are concerned have pretty heavy handed PR tactics, and there would have been a press release immediately after the successful operation.

I will be surprised if there's not a package delivered to select American media outlets within the next few days with a manifesto or declaration in it.

I am dismayed at yet another seemingly senseless act of violence aimed at maximally bringing fear and suffering to innocents. As much as anybody, I wish for the initiators of this act to be discovered and prevented from engaging in the execution of further horrors. And I wish to know what motivation drove these attackers, that others moving along similar lines of thought might be dissuaded through reason.

This is not intended as a response to haqiqat, but I have been reflecting on much the same question. But my thinking has reflected more upon the location of this attack, and the date of it, than its methods. Timing is important. It is thought in some quarters that the September 11 attacks were carried out on that date in answer to the September 11, 1683 battle in which the King of Poland and his armies rebuffed the armies of Islam, at the acme of Islam's expansion into Europe. From that date and for the next three hundred-plus years onward, Islam would govern an ever-shrinking territory in the Western world. The date was up to then of no especial significance to Americans, but to Islamic expansionists, it represented a poignantly symbolic counter to centuries of historic deprivation of European land. That same date was then chosen for the 2012 Benghazi attack which killed several American diplomats.

But this date, April 15, is of no great significance to Islam. It is not one of the dates for which experts and analysts suggest extra security because an attack on this date would be significant to Islam. But what April 15 is, is Tax Day. And it falls within a week of dates of significance to an entirely different set of terrorists. The FBI launched its final move in the siege of the Branch Davidian cult compound in Waco Texas on April 19, 1993. On the second anniversary of that attack, Timothy McVeigh and his cohorts executed the Oklahoma City bombing.

And then there is the target. Boston. Islamic terror attacks and plots have tended to be directed against landmarks having political and commercial significance, instead of being targeted against events. Reports abound of plans to attack New York, Washington, D.C., and occasionally Los Angeles. But as storied as the city is in the minds of Americans, the choice of Boston as a target is more in line with historic homegrown attacks in places like Austin, Atlanta, Indiana, and the aforementioned Oklahoma City bombing. Christian terrorist Eric Rudolph, for example, bombed the Olympics in Atlanta, and (with the aid of a like-minded network) bombed an abortion clinic and a lesbian bar. Boston, naturally, has some significance when it comes to taxes, for it is there that the original Tea Party occurred, an attack in protest against British taxation. And so, a Tax Day attack in the city of an historic anti-tax attack has immediately apparent symbolic value.

What then to make of the methods, and their resemblance to those seen in fighting 'insurgencies' in the Islamic countries the United States has occupied of late? One thing which strikes me in all this is that my recollection that though Oklahoma bomber McVeigh had chosen his date and target in response to Waco, he had picked a truck bomb as a method because that is what Islamic terrorists had tried in their first attack on the World Trade Center, in February of 1993. Simply put, those who wish to make their trade in terror can learn of one another's methods.

Naturally, none of this excludes the possibility that this is indeed an attack from a group originating outside the United States, or even the truly dreadful possibility of a joint operation of, for example, Christian (or other 'patriot') and Muslim terrorists united by a hatred of American government. As unlikely as such an alliance seems, there is just no plumbing the depths of insanity which can allow a human being to act so against others. The only thing that we can be certain of is that those who have done this thing will be discovered and captured, if at all, not through the methodology of any religion, but through science.


Node auditing proceeds thusly:

passport is on page 11 of 27
Pseudo_Intellectual is on page 4 of 31
Segnbora-t is on page 4 of 34
And pukesick is on page 4 of 29.

In the queueueu: avalyn; BookReader.

Blessings, all!!

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