Bloggers kvetch over the air marshal shooting, kibbitz over rumors that Sen. Joe Lieberman will replace Donald Rumsfeld as secretary of defense, and get verklemt over the 25th anniversary of John Lennon's passing.
Marshal law: Yesterday at the Miami airport, an air marshal shot an out-of-control passenger who claimed to have a bomb. Reports indicate that the passenger was bipolar and did not have a bomb.
John Cole, a cheeky young Republican at Balloon Juice, is somewhat conflicted: "We shall see how this turns out. My initial instinct is to defend the air marshal … but it would just be horrible if this was just a mentally ill man (although I still would instinctively defend the air marshal)." The Secular Blasphemer's empathies also are with the air marshal. Referring to the fact that the victim's wife claims he was bipolar, he writes, "Tragic, if true. But air marshalls can't do diagnoses; they have to take such threats seriously."
Still, the reactions of other bloggers reflect their political views. Jayson at conservative group blog PoliPundit can't muster up an ounce of empathy for the victim. "I guess he thought Letterman was auditioning for 'Stupid Human Tricks,' eh? BTW, who gets blamed for the fact there were armed federal air marshals on that particular plane, ready to welcome that idiot to America with a bullet? Should we blame Bush? DHS?" PunditGuy's Bill Ninhus hopes officials don't jump the gun: "Obviously, this is a tragedy, but I hope no one decides that we should disarm federal air marshals or worse, that we should remove them from passenger airplanes. That would be another tragedy."
Commenting at Talk Left, Scott Ferguson disagrees : "It seems obvious to me that the air marshall was poorly trained, or was following faulty rules of engagement. … The air marshalls failed to manage the situation properly, and a man was killed." Stop the ACLU's Jay harbors a hunch his adversary might get involved: "wonder if the lefties will try to make a bad guy out of this man? Any one else feel an ACLU lawsuit coming on?"
Read more about the shooting here.
Changes at the Pentagon? The New York Daily News reports that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld could step down after a new Iraqi government is formed, and that Democratic Sen. Joe Lieberman is being weighed by the White House as a possible replacement.
The RabbleRouser, who hosts "a daily news forum on the excesses of society and the media" is not buying it: "As much as I like Liberman, no way in hell is he going to give up his senate seat for a partial term in a White House Administration that is unpopular, and damn near halfway through its final term." His message to Joe: "Don't do it Liberman, unless you plan on becoming republican of course." At Kudlow's Money Politic$, Reaganite Lawrence Kudlow doesn't think Lieberman's name coming up is all that odd but questions whether Lieberman has the right stuff: "That's an interesting thought. Lieberman has certainly been helpful of late. But my question is whether Mr. Lieberman is tough enough to run the Defense Department?" Clearly, libertarian Saintperle adheres to Mae West's famous axiom "if you can't say anything nice come sit by me." Here's her reaction to the rumor: "[O]ne-time Democrat Little Joey Lieberman has kissed [Bush's] ass so long he can be considered an ally. BeLOW Me's Weinish dislikes the administration but doesn't hold Lieberman in high esteem either.: "This may explain Lieberman's douche-like head nodding supporting whatever Bush does in Iraq."
Read more about the Lieberman scuttlebutt here.
Lennon's anniversary: Today marks the 25th anniversary of John Lennon's death at the hands of Mark David Chapman.
Legal whiz Ann Althouse laments that she was too self conscious to grieve properly when it happened. "On the day I heard that John had died, I was a law student at NYU. I remember dragging myself in to the law review office and expecting everyone there to be crying and talking about it, but no one was saying anything at all. I never felt so alienated from my fellow law students as I did on that day. I was insecure enough to feel that I was being childish to be so caught up in the story of the death of a celebrity long past his prime." Fingernails on the blackboard's Curtis, a programmer, still can't rationalize Lennon's death: "I remember getting in the car and listening to the song Bye Bye Miss American Pie. I remember forgetting where I was supposed to be going. I remember thinking; 'Can there be any way to think about this that can even begin to make sense? Is there any convoluted trick of logic that can offer a scenario in which this would be a good thing? … No, I concluded. There is nothing good that can ever be said about what happened today.' " British blogger Steve at Chief's World thinks his countryman's killer, Mark David Chapman, is safest in jail. "Chapman continues to get rejected for parole and remains in complete isolation which is probably best for him as the first chance he comes into contact with anyone either outside or within prison then someone will do a Jack Ruby."
Read more reactions to the anniversary here.