The Crossroads of America—For Terrorists!

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Ah, Indiana, homeland of such homespun heroes as Wendell Wilkie, Jean Shepherd, Booth Tarkington, John Cougar Mellencamp, Larry Bird, Axl Rose, Florence Henderson, David Letterman, Garfield, Radley Balko, and so many more…

No wonder the terrrorists hate it. And no wonder, then, that the Hoosier State boasted over 8,500 entries on the National Asset Database, which the Department of Homeland Security uses to assess who gets what in terms of anti-terrorism grant money. According to the list, reports the NY Times, Indiana has 50 percent more "potential targets" than New York and twice as many as California. One knee-trembling target in Indiana? Berne's "Amish Country Popcorn."

A DHS inspector's general report has reviewed the list and pronounced, "The presence of large numbers of out-of-place assets taints the credibility of the data."

Whole story and list of "potential targets" in each state (Wisconsin has second-highest total in the nation, btw), thanks to reader John Gilmore, here.

Back in June at Reason Online, Veronique de Rugy cast a cold eye on DHS's grant-making process here.

NEXT: "Toyota's totally bizarre recall"

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  1. The US federal government has gotten so large and powerful that it is simply not working, anymore. Things like this are becoming more and more common as we see more corruption and incompetence seemingly every day.

  2. Why does the DHS Inspector General hate Indiana?

  3. Having driven on an Indiana freeway, I can assure you that the vibrations will damage any dangerous device that they might be carrying in their vehicle.

  4. The US federal government has gotten so large and powerful that it is simply not working, anymore. Things like this are becoming more and more common as we see more corruption and incompetence seemingly every day.

    I don’t know – I think that for an organization so large and complex the Federal Government works reasonably well. Its big problem is PR – nobody gives it any attention unless it screws up.

  5. Besides that IND and WISC are where my family is from, don’t forget that Indiana gave us LUGARMANIA!

    Indiana has been the target of evil terrorists before.
    Details of the plot and results are here

    Are YOU a friend of Carlotta?

  6. I loved that 718 mortuaries were targets. That’ll show us. Killing our dead.

  7. I think we need another “War on Terror” episode of Reno 911. It’s been a while.

  8. To be fair, pretty much anything could be a terrorist target ? aren?t most acts of terrorism against cafes, buses, etc? You can almost imagine that attacking a ?safe? place like an Amish Popcorn stand would terrorize people quite a bit as some people who think they?re safe because they don?t live in NYC or Washington would start to think otherwise.

  9. I’m worried about protecting Indiana’s Amish Country, can’t we give the amish grants to armor their buggies? I mean it is just common sense that the terrorists who want to turn the clock back to 1500 would first attack the people who want to turn the clock back to 1708.

    Please think of the children!!! (especially the amish ones becuase they’re really imbred)

  10. Dr. T – Indiana highways are a paradise. Come to western PA. Drive on the lovely turnpike. Navigate the maze of unpaved back roads. And can you take me with you when you leave?

  11. Western PA except for Butler County. Somehow, the head of PENNDOT there gets it right and the roads are in really good shape. It’s amazing to cross from Allegheny to Butler or Beaver to Butler – it’s like going from 1912 to 2006!

  12. Omigosh Mabel, not only can’t we let little Suzie and Johnny out of the house without helmets, knee pads, an anti-junk food detector, a gps device and implanted chip, but now we cannot take them to the Amish Popcorn Museum. Next the terrorists will target our neighborhood vegan block party.

  13. I’m waiting for further details in this story about how the list was made up, but I suspect that the failures/frauds here were committed first by state officials padding their lists, then by federal officials not checking them twice.

  14. The US federal government has gotten so large and powerful that it is simply not working, anymore.

    Apparently one form of obesity can be ignored by politicians.

  15. Bloody NYTimes traitorous bas Tards. Giving away target lists to the terrorists!

    How will I ever be able to stop at the Brat Stop on the way into WisCONsin again without fearing something besides saturated fat?

  16. TP’s Goiter – Butler County is mostly less crappy than the rest of PA. The country is prettier and even the yinzing is less pronounced.

    The village there that bears my last name is a shithole though. Amazing what happens to an oil-boom town when the oil goes away.

  17. It?s hard for a parent to win with Libertarians. Half the time we?re too obsessed with children, dressing them up in bicycle helmets and refusing to let them leave the house or eat anything tasty. The other half of the time we?re slackers, not keeping them on a short enough leash or expecting society to actually be concerned about them from time to time.

  18. Yeah, Dan T. You’re so right. It’s not like it’s possible for parents to be hyper-concerned about somethings and negligent about others. It certainly can’t be that some parents are different than others. If libertarians cared about anything at all, they would treat all parents as one monolithic platonic form and keep there story consistent!

  19. Sorry, I posted that one on the wrong thread!

  20. TP’s Goiter – Butler County is mostly less crappy than the rest of PA. The country is prettier and even the yinzing is less pronounced.

    Cranberry has helped the standard of living and Butler and Zelie are great little towns. And the country is beautiful.

  21. “I don’t know – I think that for an organization so large and complex the Federal Government works reasonably well. Its big problem is PR – nobody gives it any attention unless it screws up.”

    After reading this statement, I can only assume that Dan T. stepped through a timewarp sometime before Nixon was elected president.

    I find his na?vet? both perplexing and precociously retro.

  22. After reading this statement, I can only assume that Dan T. stepped through a timewarp sometime before Nixon was elected president.

    You didn’t go back far enough.

  23. Nice to see Jean Shepherd get a shout. The man was awesome – “A Christmas Story” was probably his *worst* work.

  24. After reading this statement, I can only assume that Dan T. stepped through a timewarp sometime before Nixon was elected president.

    I find his na?vet? both perplexing and precociously retro.

    Why? The United States all in all is a pretty well functioning society.

    What governments in the world right now work better?

    Maybe the libertarian paradise of Baghdad? No big government, high taxes or anti-smoking measures there!

  25. Dan, your record of logical fallacies continues to amaze and astound the audience.

    What governments in the world right now work better?

    Even if I were to grant you the point that our gov’t works better than most in the world, that does not mean that its functioning is even close to being acceptable.

    And, of course, jumping straight to Baghdad makes sooo much sense.

    Dipshit.

  26. Even if I were to grant you the point that our gov’t works better than most in the world, that does not mean that its functioning is even close to being acceptable.

    You’re a tough sell. Maybe our government is as good as a government gets for a large country?

    I mean, we’re talking about keeping a nation of 300 million people running smoothly. I think we just don’t give the government credit for what it does right and are quick to jump on it for anything that goes wrong.

    Either way, I find it hard to believe that the US government has such an negative impact on your life that you truly find it “not even close to being acceptable”.

  27. I find it hard to believe that the US government has such an negative impact on your life that you truly find it “not even close to being acceptable”.

    Are you fucking shitting me? From toilets that won’t flush right (because of gov’t-mandated “water savings” measures) to taxes that have driven me to the brink of bankruptcy to the airbag that threatens my kids’ lives every time I get in the car with them, the US gov’t is little but a negative impact on my life.

    They do only a halfway-competent job at the few things that they’re supposed to be doing, and and a truly craptacular job at all the things that they’ve taken upon themselves.

    Why don’t you go back to jerking off on the pages of the Federal Register, you slackwit gradualist totalitarian?

  28. Are you fucking shitting me? From toilets that won’t flush right (because of gov’t-mandated “water savings” measures) to taxes that have driven me to the brink of bankruptcy to the airbag that threatens my kids’ lives every time I get in the car with them, the US gov’t is little but a negative impact on my life.

    This is what I?m talking about ? you live your life in relative luxury to the rest of the world, you don?t have to worry about our country being overtaken by an invading army, you can go about your daily business without really having to worry about rioting, lawlessness, violent uprisings or severe systematic corruption?but sometimes you have to flush twice? That?s your gripe?

    And yeah, everybody hates taxes, but as Oliver Wendell Holmes put it, that?s the price of civilization. There are places in the world where there is no taxation, but nobody wants to live there.

    Sounds like you should spend some time in a real totalitarian situation, maybe you?d come to appreciate our government a little more and realize that mandated air bags are really not that big a deal.

  29. I live my life in relative luxury in spite of my gov’t, not because of it.

    The United States is still a great country because of its peoples’ historical animosity to gov’t, and not because the gov’t here works so well.

    If you cannot grasp that, Dan, then you are even dimmer than your argumentation thus far would tend to suggest.

  30. The United States is still a great country because of its peoples’ historical animosity to gov’t, and not because the gov’t here works so well.

    Hear Hear!

    What makes this country great isn’t our government, but the limitations on said government that were put in place by the Constitution.

    It isn’t because our politicians are so fucking honest or have much more integrity or are just so caring about “the people” or are uncorruptable, its that the Constitution has given put limits on them and has given us — the people — the power to challenge and hold them accountable — that is what is lacking in most other countries.

    Dan, what do you think?? That our country is great because we just have more honest politicians than the rest of the world???

  31. I live my life in relative luxury in spite of my gov’t, not because of it.

    Not totally because of it, but the government sets the framework for our society and allows it to flourish. In many ways, it?s true that?s because the government knows where and when to regulate and where and when to let things work on their own.

    The United States is still a great country because of its peoples’ historical animosity to gov’t, and not because the gov’t here works so well.

    Or perhaps our general distrust of government is one of the things that causes it to work so well?

    I guess I don’t see why this is so hard for you admit. Our government is far from perfect but in the big picture it works pretty well.

  32. It isn’t because our politicians are so fucking honest or have much more integrity or are just so caring about “the people” or are uncorruptable, its that the Constitution has given put limits on them and has given us — the people — the power to challenge and hold them accountable — that is what is lacking in most other countries.

    Dan, what do you think?? That our country is great because we just have more honest politicians than the rest of the world???

    No, I pretty much agree with you here, but I don’t recall saying anything about individual politicans and how honest they might be.

    I’m saying that our government, as a system, works reasonably well. Not perfect, of course, but who is doing it better?

  33. I’m tired of playing whack-a-mole with you, Dan. I’ve already said that even if nobody’s doing it any better than our gov’t, I’m not willing to just sit back and accept whatever our gov’t decides to do.

    That appears to be your position.

    And that is why this country is no longer so great as it used to be, and will continue to decline. Your view is carrying the day, to the detriment of human freedom here and everywhere.

    Yes, I’m saying that it is All Your Fault.

  34. Dan T.: The 18th century British Empire was probably one of the best governments in existence at that time. The monarch was limited by a constitution. Even the common people had some representation in the government. It defended and treated its colonial pretty well.

    Nevertheless, some people bitched about it and took a shot at designing something better. There is a difference between “the best we’ve got” and “the best we can do.”

  35. dittoes….no, wait, amen?? no wait: yup, Cleanhands.
    Just because a plurality of us citizens…..no, wait……im still trying to get this “no borders” horseshit, no wait: just because the plurality of folks livin in the US are doing, comparativly, better than anyone else, anywehere else, in history DONT mean we doff our caps when Master goes by.
    More like we pull him from his horse: hes a murderous thief, none the less.

  36. Dan has unwittingly proven just how bad our government is by making the benchmark of success the fact that at least it is better than the current failed system in Iraq. Next, we will be told that the crime rate in DC is not bad when you compare it to living in Mogadishu or Darfur. We should also be happy that we continue to enjoy more freedom than the average citizen of North Korea or China. Typical statist mindset, evaluating the quality of our system of government and the freedom that we are allowed to have by contrasting it with every shitty country led by despots and communists instead of the ideal that the United States was created to represent.

  37. You guys are quite amazing. I guess when your dogma is “government is bad”, any evidence to the contrary has to be rejected.

  38. A couple of wars back, Fort Wayne Was Seventh on Hitler’s List.

    As for targets behind the Cheddar Curtain, gaijin is right to worry. Islamofascists can’t be too happy about all that pork sausage we produce.

    Kevin

  39. Dan has unwittingly proven just how bad our government is by making the benchmark of success the fact that at least it is better than the current failed system in Iraq. Next, we will be told that the crime rate in DC is not bad when you compare it to living in Mogadishu or Darfur. We should also be happy that we continue to enjoy more freedom than the average citizen of North Korea or China. Typical statist mindset, evaluating the quality of our system of government and the freedom that we are allowed to have by contrasting it with every shitty country led by despots and communists instead of the ideal that the United States was created to represent.

    So I’ve proven how bad our government is by comparing it to governments that are worse?

    That’s, uh, interesting logic.

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