MAYBE it's just me, but I could swear that Times Square
I live in Indianapolis, 700 miles and half a world away, and just within the past week a) the Targeted Polyhedron Weather Siren program was shelved, due to a software glitch; we're returning for the nonce to the old "set 'em off whenever the barometer falls" program, which was scheduled to be replaced because everybody ignores constant warnings that don't pan out; and b) it was announced that the 9/11-based hydraulic vehicle barrier around the Statehouse hasn't been working for over a year, because it got rained on. You'll forgive a certain jaundiced view of the whole Emergency Response Game if you detect one coming from this direction. Funny thing about Expertise: you always have much more of it before it's tested.
As far as I'm concern the "News" can fluff the Terra angle every time the cops find a car with a gas can and a bag of potting soil in the back; it makes it less likely the public will listen to professional pants-pissing of the politically-motivated variety. What I don't quite get, or maybe I do, is how this little Factlet of Life gets missed. Especially as this comes from the same "News" readers who've reported the difficulty the weather service has trying to balance awareness and Klaxon Fatigue. Or who might be in the best position to recall that Liberal Touchy-Feely Trying To Understand The Terrorists After 9/11 was Objectively Pro-Fifth Columnist.
Why do we still give Terrists (and Army Germ Bomb doctors, and other White Male psychopaths) the publicity they crave? It's curious that this time, just like the Underpants Bomber Disaster and the Smartass Middle-Eastern Diplomat Rogue Bathroom Smoker Disaster, the initial reports were almost businesslike. And the initial reticence lasts about sixty minutes, after which the hunt for some connection to Islam is in full bray, and never mind that anyone who paid attention already knows the threat was a) amateurish, or b) non-existent. The only thing that's served by reporting on how significant ("very") the fireball could have been, had there been a fireball, is the presumption of improved ratings for newscasts and public servants. It's as though every Terra Event now has a criminal trial phase, where the Lousy Islamic Perps get off once again on technicalities like not being involved, or the whole thing having been blown out of all proportion, followed by the civil suit, where the rules of evidence are relaxed and we can bask in convicting 'em anyway. And give the nation's hard-pressed Counterterrorism Experts a little shot in the arm into the bargain, by allowing them to ask "C'mon, Why Don't We Have More Car Bombings?" ("Terror in the Trunk". Nice touch.)