Then Again, Maybe Not: Of Rats and Ratholes

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We're all entitled to change our minds. Given the fallibility of the human species, rarely are people's opinions and ideas so chiselled in stone that they never re-think their actions and beliefs.

Exceptions to that rule of thumb must be made for individuals who are so caught up in themselves, so arrogantly obsessed with their own rectitude and infallibility that their pride negates any possibility of reassessment and retrenching.

Barack Obama comes to mind in that regard but we mortals frequently change our minds, whether for better or worse.

A number of opinion changes have hit the wires lately, mostly forced changes:

. Civilian shimilian, who cares?

Obama's attorney general may have at least a smattering of that mortality since he seems ready to reassess a significant and erroneous decision, namely trying 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his four sidekicks in a civilian court within crying distance of Ground Zero.

Some still refer to KSM as the "alleged" or the "accused" mastermind of the 9/11 atrocity but he's much more than that. With a little help from America's best interrogation friend, waterboarding, Mohammed spilled his guts so in my book he's the confessed leader of that rat pack.

Months ago, Eric Holder, obviously running interference for his boss, made the ostensibly independent decision to hold the trial in federal court in lower Manhattan. This was while Obama and Holder still believed they had control of our government and the minds of the people.

Neither is the case any longer.

Holder and his minions have used the Bush precedent of successfully trying shoe bomber Richard Reid and other terrorists in civilian courts which was a misleading deception from the outset.

Most of those trials took place in the early days of the war on terrorism before Guantanamo was up and running as the ideal, most secure venue for conducting military tribunals.

Not yet fully committed to backtracking on the proper venue, nor admitting that Rep. Peter King and Sen. Lindsey Graham's opposition played a role, Holder and the White House are pretending to hang tough for the nonce.

Neither do they concede the petition against a trial on United States soil or the national uproar over the dumb idea were factors: [http://bit.ly/cS2qDa]

However, by voicing some doubts, the AG and WH Press Secretary Robert Gibbs are just playing the face-saving game. KSM's trial may not be held at GITMO, but it sure as hell won't be held where Khalid could make obscene gestures in proximity to the WTC.

. Keep your hands out of my cookie jar!

We happen to own a French cookie chef who resides in a large cookie jar and who chastises anyone with that warning should they lift his mobile head. He's provided more giggles from our grandkids than any other toy we own.

There's no giggling coming out of the Polk County School District in Lakeland, Florida where officials were caught with their grubby hands in Obama's-America's-stimulus jar when they figured, Hey, what the hey, we have all this taxpayer money so why not waste a bunch of it?

Told by the State Department of Education that they were not authorized to give away $150. Ipod Nanos to parents of the 13,500 kids with disabilities in the Polk County schools, Polk County tried to do it anyway.

They only rescinded the scheme when their generosity-with taxpayer money-was exposed by Glenn Beck on the FNC and by the Drudge Report: http://bit.ly/cBcs3v

The Polk flipflop was reminiscent of Emily Litella's, "Oh, nevermind."

Essentially a bribe to get parents to complete a district survey, Polk officials manufactured a slew of other rationales, none of which made much sense and none of which meant any benefit to the kids.

After recission of their IPod giveaway, the $350k will now be poured down another rathole. According to a district press release, the funds "will now be used to support classroom instruction and curriculum."

Translation: Okay, so now we'll waste the money some other way with no oversight on how we'll use it.

. He ain't no Teddy or Uncle Jack!

The wildly overachieving carpetbagger Rep. Patrick Joseph Kennedy II has decided to throw in the towel before the residents of Rhode Island's first congressional district tossed him out of office come November.

Scion of the Kennedy clan, Teddy Branch, Patrick's change of mind about running for a 9th term in congress was momentous in many ways chiefly in that the next congress will convene without a Kennedy in office for the first time in half a century: http://bit.ly/9C4jM4

Considering that Kennedy dearth, Patrick's decision must have greatly weighed on him although, based on how the clan is known to operate, he didn't decide alone to leave congress Kennedy-less.

However, like poet Edwin Arlington Robinson's alcoholic character, fellow New Englander old Eben Flood, Patrick had his reasons not to seek re-election.

He may still be devastated by the passing of his beloved father and mentor or he may simply be one of the many Demrats deserting the Obama ship before the voters desert them.

Patrick's seat seemed secure but then Martha Coakley's election to his father's senate seat seemed secure, too. He didn't help Martha much when he got her name wrong, thrice, at a pre-election rally and didn't help himself much by his petulant criticism of new Massachusetts senator, Republican Scott Brown.

My guess is that Patrick Kennedy was indeed gravely wounded by his father's passing but that he could have braved on if not for his own character weaknesses and his realization that the only reason he held office was his last name.

Most people occasionally change their minds; few change without good cause.
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