Whom do you call on in a pinch for expertise about jihadist plots if you’re a guy who hasn’t taken terrorism seriously since 9/11? Why, a guy who hasn’t taken terrorism seriously since before 9/11, of course. It’s a segment six years in the making, starting with Crazy Larry’s now-legendary “stop worrying about terror” op-ed published in July 2001 and continuing through to this morning when he wowed the dKos faithful by pronouncing the car-bomb plot a “crock of crap.”

Olby seems a bit subdued here aside from an obligatory sneer at the “media nodding-head dolls” who don’t have the guts to embrace their paranoia the way he does. Eschewing his usual Trutherish shtick in these circumstances, he opts instead for a weak gotcha about how this single incident puts the lie to Bush’s claim that we’re fighting them in Iraq so we don’t have to fight them at home. No mention of the absence of attacks on America since the invasion, no acknowledgment that the guys behind this were probably homegrown and thus already here — the Murrow of our time doesn’t let such trivia get in the way of a good talking point. As for Larry, he sniffs about “yuppie terrorists” who drive Mercedes but naturally doesn’t mention that the Mercedes was ten years old, which means it probably cost considerably less than 10 grand assuming it was purchased recently. He also scoffs at the idea that a bomb this crude could have done much more than torch the car itself and maybe singe a few people within 20 or 30 feet. The (left-leaning) weapons experts at Danger Room, who are taking this very seriously, beg to differ, as does ABC News, which was told by British officials that the explosion would have been lethal within a “several hundred yard radius.” And then there’s this:

The cell phone had received at least two calls, which should have detonated several gallons of gasoline, but when the calls came in, the bomb failed to go off, the official said.

Had it done so, that blast then would have ignited six to eight tanks of propane in a mist to make a fuel-air explosion, creating a fireball the size of a small house and propelling 18 to 20 boxes of roofing nails around a large area at bullet speed, counterterrorism officials said.

The news organization responsible for that report? The same one that signs Olby’s checks.

It ends with a stirring note about the only thing we have to fear. Hint: It doesn’t involve a wild-eyed guy sitting on a pile of hurtling high explosives and muttering about Allah.

Tags: terrorism