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Marking things for the bomb squad

Don't hurt me!

Rod Begbie is going around Cambridge putting Not a Bomb stickers on objects to make life easier for local bomb squads.

Earlier:
Bomb squad detonates traffic counter.
Mooninites.

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Comments

this rod guy is a fool. how does he expect police/bomb squads to react to 911 calls for suspicious packages and devices. the bomb squad does not patrol city streets looking for items to blow up with the water cannon. they respond to a citizens' concerns, be they silly or not. although the likelihood of a traffic device being a bomb is 1 in a million, they are trained not to take that chance. how would you have them react? they are damned if they do, damned if they dont. it is so easy to be a professional second guesser.

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Are you telling me that the only way forward is to have the bomb squad responding to every chicken little who thinks every lamppost is a bomb? I mean for gods sake, you'd think there would be a better way for the bomb squad to respond to a traffic counter than to close down the financial district for an entire morning so that they can blow up the City's own property.

I'm damn sick of people refusing to accept any criticism of the the BPD, and all the other agencies that are supposed to be keeping us safe. Don't you realize all this crying wolf has an enormous price - one that wil be paid when people stop taking threats seriously because officials repeatedly react to every day devices as bombs.

Christ almighty, this is not the way forward.

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you problem is with the people calling in every item they see in the street as a possible bomb. i agree with you. but these guys follow a certain protocol, and it is not their choice to deviate from that protocol. just imagine if they made a mistake and did not treat what turned out to be a bomb or chemical threat seriously. you would be the firt person screaming and yelling.

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Then they need a new protocal. You think that the protocal is good if it forces the closure of the Financial District and the use of explosives because they don't know what a traffic counter is?

If that is the protocal, then they will be endlessly chasing their tails. Maybe its time to rethink the way they handle these things? Maybe its time to consider that communication between the various agencies suck. Maybe its time to consider that the protocal is counter productive to the ends they are trying to achieve.

Isn't it obvious that is terrorists wanted to cause mayhem that it would be quite easy to send the bomb squad running around in circles, chasing phantoms bombs, giving the terrorists a much easier opening to plant a real one?

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Blowing up traffic counters is another face of teh same sort of idiocy which made Boston the source of the 9/11 planes.

To wit: it's about putting on a big show of grand self-importance rather than systematically addressing the shortcomings of an organization. It is about having one's name on a plaque rather than designing things to international standards. It is about not even looking at the sorts of interagency communication seen in other cities and adapting the best practices to Boston, and simply declaring onself competent and in charge.

Because our government was designed in antiquity and refined by organized crime of varying stripes, we get grandstanding political appointees who know how to bootlick but don't know thing one about their jobs, how to do their jobs and do them right, or even how to learn how to do their jobs right. To them, the job is to "look important".

Patronage disease is the problem. Blowing up mooninites and traffic counters is a symptom. So is what happened to AA Flight 11. My dad has long managed traffic counters in other parts of the country and in Canada and he thinks their not knowing what they were looking at is about as lame as it gets. Bootlicking blowhards with no experience with the things they have been put in charge of are no substitute for modern governance in a complex environment.

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swirlygirl is right. her father is a airline ticket taker/terrorism expert, and his views on the situation really changed my mind. the terrorists also left newark and dulles airports, so i think it is more of a systematic problem than a local one. the traffic counter in question was not a BTD traffic counter. it was an unmarked device, that when x-rayed would reveal wires, power source, etc. if you think that the boston police are over reacting to "threats", then i suggest you look at other big city's responses, namely new york city. they shut down blocks of the city of a time on a daily basis to either run drills or respond to perceived threats.

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Boston and it's neighboring areas are one of the most horrendously balkanized and disorganized metropolitan areas around. Cities don't talk to cities, agencies don't coordinate, The usual excuses of "it's different here" apply only to they way people with no knowledge of an agency and no interest in best practices are routinely put in charge of agencies, and the absurd insistance on rigid and insignificantly tiny geographic turf areas in systems which are regional and should be regional.

At least NYC seems to have gotten it's act together in some areas of the city, so change is possible. Meanwhile, Boston is a world class city only among those who have never travelled elswhere or looked to other cities for good solutions to common problems.

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Ah, but that sticker is exactly what you'd expect to see on a bomb in disguise! "Not a bomb! Nothing to see here! I'm definitely not a bomb!"

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