I have just about lost interest in Y2K. The doom and gloom has all but been averted by the greed of capitalism. Even from Mexico I hear good news of companies getting ready. Anyone with a profit-loss sheet will be ready. Now, the Feds, well, that's another story. I hear good reports from most Federal Agencies, but they have a habit of over-rating their good news anyway.
The following is where I feel the real trouble will come from. I have a report from "inside" that the Feds are frantically getting ready for just this sort of thing. Terrorism from all directions, and for many reasons, is the real fear now.
Dec. 15, 1999-- Two weeks ago FEMA announced that John W. Magaw would be joining the agency management team. That name may not ring a bell for most people, but his appointment is a bit of a surprise, given the job he is leaving.
Magaw currently serves as director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. That's a pretty big job he's leaving. And guess what he's going to do at FEMA? You got it. He will plan and coordinate FEMA's domestic terrorism efforts.
Magaw, by the way, is an anti-Second Amendment zealot. Readers of this column may recall his name from his most famous and liberal interpretation of the 'Gun Free Zones Act.' Back in October of 1997, I wrote about how Magaw found the new law banning guns from within 1,000 feet of a school, whether in a home or in a car, to include home schools. Thus, home-schooling parents would be deprived of their constitutional rights as would all other gun owners who would have no way of knowing which homes are used for home-schooling.
Do you get it? Due to the complete failure of government schools in this country, more and more parents are choosing to home-school their kids.
States have discouraged it. Washington certainly has. But here's an innovative new twist dreamed up by the idiots in Congress and a visionary madman in the Clinton administration.
It's difficult today -- if not impossible -- to find a neighborhood anywhere in America where someone is not home-schooling. Do you see the sheer genius of Magaw's idea from the point of view of a government gun-grabber? It's difficult enough knowing when you are traveling within 1,000 feet of a traditional school -- government or private. But how on earth is one supposed to know if and when you are driving past a home school? There are no flagpoles, no crossing guards and no playgrounds. Home schools look just like any other home.
And who came up with this ingenious interpretation of a bad law? John Magaw. Isn't this the guy you want in charge of domestic terrorism? He obviously believes that all law-abiding gun owners are really potential domestic terrorists who need to be disarmed for the safety of our communities.
Magaw is a Clinton favorite all the way. Before taking over leadership of BATF, he served as director of Clinton's Secret Service. Imagine the secrets the head of the Secret Service under Clinton must learn. It boggles the mind. When you see a guy like that get promoted, you know it's a payoff for loyalty - for keeping his mouth shut.
FEMA is a virtual dumping grounds for Clinton's trusted inner circle of federal cops. And that's what makes it a genuinely scary agency - not the 'X-Files' warnings of Fox Mulder.
If I didn't know better, I'd say that Washington -- and particularly the Clinton administration -- is doing everything in its power to ensure that those of us already cynical about the intentions of government get a message. And the message I hear is: We're coming after you, and we are using any means necessary to subdue you and suppress your radical ideas about freedom. (Joseph Farah Commentary)
VANCOUVER NOTEBOOK by DAVID TRACEY
The Y2K phenomenon could have turned out a lot worse than most people expect if a Vancouver area man had had his way.
Al Reumayr, 50, was arrested last month on charges of plotting to cash in on the panic following an expected social breakdown on January 1.
The New Westminster resident was not only counting on computers to crash, according to a warrant for his arrest - he also planned bomb attacks in Canada, the United States, Mexico and Asia.
The engineer and machinist allegedly spent eight years planning to destroy oil and electricity facilities on New Year's Day, disrupting power supplies. Amid all the other chaos this might have caused, oil stock prices would rise. Authorities say Reumayr would then have profited by selling off utility stocks.
"Reumayr's plan is the manipulation of oil, gas and electric commodity stocks and futures contracts and options purchased before the bombings," said an affidavit filed with Canadian and American courts by the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
The charges claim he knew how to make bombs, but lacked the raw materials. For that, they say, Reumayr tried to recruit an ex-convict he knew in Albuquerque, New Mexico. But the would-be accomplice went to the police, handing over e-mail from Reumayr that refers to the plan as a "fishing trip".
One of the e-mails reads: "I think you'll be impressed with these projects and the ease of seeing them through. I've had eight years to think about them and I'm still impressed."
Reumayr was arrested at his New Westminster home after allegedly sending the ex-convict C$1,500 (HK$7,815) to buy explosive materials.
American authorities say he planned to target the Trans-Alaska crude
oil pipeline and are seeking his extradition to stand trial in the US.
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