Limited Hang Out

Illusions of Incompetence Theories and Intelligence Failures to Cover Up Scandals

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From the Nixon tapes, 1973-03-22

PRESIDENT: You think, you think we want to, want to go this route now? And the--let it hang out, so to speak?
DEAN: Well, it's, it isn't really that--
HALDEMAN: It's a limited hang out.
DEAN: It's a limited hang out.
EHRLICHMAN: It's a modified limited hang out.
PRESIDENT: Well, it's only the questions of the thing hanging out publicly or privately.

“If anybody could have predicted this economic crisis, I would have liked to have met them.”
-- Ellen Weiss, senior vice president for news, National Public Radio
PBS News Hour December 11, 2008

"I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees."
-- George W. Bush, September 1, 2005

"I don't think anybody could have predicted that these people would take an airplane and slam it into the World Trade Center, take another one and slam it into the Pentagon, that they would try to use an airplane as a missile, a hijacked airplane as a missile."
-- Condoleeza Rice, May 16, 2002

"The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum."
-- Noam Chomsky

Incompetence theories:
9/11, Iraq, Katrina, vote fraud

9/11 failure analogies

The claim that 9/11 was a "failure" is similar to

9/11 was not an failure of intelligence or incompetence in the Air Force's defense of New York and Washington. The only "intelligence failure" is among the media and much of the public that avoids looking at the official, deliberate policies that facilitated the crime.

This strategy is not limited to 9/11. The computerized ballot machine issue is also dominated by people who have decided that a nice-sounding but totally ineffectual strategy is the way to solve the problem (although this certainly wasn't decided in any participatory way).

The day the "capture of Saddam" was announced to the media, at least one peace group sent out a press release stating that Bush still hasn't found the perpetrators of 9/11 (and therefore the capture of Saddam Hussein wasn't a big deal). This is an unintentional support for the coverup, since Bush and Cheney see perpetrators every time they look in a mirror.

from Michael Ruppert, Crossing the Rubicon, p. 11

The intelligence/criminal wall

One of the hottest themes in the well≠watched hearings of the so-called independent 9/11 commission in April of 2004 was that there was an alleged wall between law enforcement activities at the FBI and other agencies and the intelligence side of the FBI and the CIA which prohibited the sharing of information that might have prevented the attacks. This theme was sung like choir practice by virtually every witness who testified during the week from Condoleezza Rice, to Janet Reno, to John Ashcroft, to Louis Freeh, to Robert Mueller.

How does that reconcile with the following statement from a RAND Corporation study on terrorism from 2001? The RAND Corporation was formed as a think tank by the CIA and the US Air Force in the 1950s.

Finally, it is important to note that efforts to prevent or disrupt terrorist action frequently are successful, and these activities have reduced the number of terrorist incidents that would have occurred in the absence of these activities:

Disruption of terrorist events by working with foreign intelligence and law enforcement services has proved profitable; U.S. intelligence agencies prevented Osama bin Laden's organization from carrying out at least seven vehicle bomb attacks on U.S. facilities since August 1998 (Kelly, 1999, p.1A), and U.S. intelligence has conducted successful disruption operations in as many as 10 countries in the six months up to March 1999 (Associated Press, 1999).

In actual operations and special events, agencies generally coordinated their activities. For example, we examined several overseas counterterrorist operations and found that agencies generally followed the draft interagency International Guidelines. DoD, the FBI, and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) performed their respective roles in military planning, law enforcement and intelligence gathering under the oversight of the State Department (e.g., the ambassador). Minor interagency tensions or conflicts during these operations were resolved and did not appear to have posed risk to the mission.

In a similar vein, FBI data on terrorism in the United States suggest a reasonably high degree of success in terrorism prevention activities at home -- only a small annual number of actual terrorist incidents occurred in recent years, and more preventions of terrorist incidents than actual incidents. [emphases added]
-- Eric V. Larson and John E. Peters, Preparing the U.S. Army for Homeland Security, MR-1251/A, ISBN: 0-8330-2919-3, MR-1251/A © 2001, pp. 52, 67, 68.


California demands paper back up for Touch Screen Machines - why this is not a solution
In mid-November 2003, the State of California demanded that counties have paper trails for touch screen voting machines. At first glance, this seems like a huge victory for grassroots pressure. However, this development is not a victory for democracy. First, the decision does not need to be implemented until 2006, meaning that Governor Schwarzenegger is now free to do to California's elections what Governor Jeb Bush did in Florida in 2000. Second, paper ballots are not what will actually be counted in these elections - the Diebold / Sequoia / ES&S machines will still determine the outcome. If there is a controversy, then paper ballots could be used to verify whether the machines were rigged or not. Unfortunately, few elections are close enough for automatic recounts, meaning that all the tamperers need to do is to rig the outcome enough so that the results appear legitimate. For example, the California "recall" race had Schwarzenegger comfortably over 50 percent, thus ensuring that no recount (or a second recall against him) would happen. And in many cases where the outcome has been disputed - such as the 2002 Governor race in Alabama - no recounts were done because of Republican obstinancy and Democratic meekness in the face of blatant vote fraud.
Therefore, paper trails are not a solution. Paper ballots, counted by hand - that is the only solution to vote fraud in America.
Mike Ruppert, From the Wilderness
DECEMBER 17, 2003

The modified limited hangout has arrived! (Admit part of the blame to hide the greater sin) -- Fresh on the heels of the reported capture of Saddam Hussein, the Bush administration, working through a Republican apparatchik heading a virtually useless and spineless commission investigating the attacks, has decided to try to turn the corner on 9/11. It was all just a big mistake that could have been prevented and the Bush administration is protecting screw-ups. That's what they want America and the world to believe. 9/11 was not an intelligence failure. It was an intelligence success. Everyone who sees this story is urged to react as strongly as possible with emails, calls and letters to CBS, the major press and the White House saying, "THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE. IT DOES NOT ANSWER THE QUESTIONS AND WE WANT FULL DISCLOSURE."

July 1, 2003 1600 PDT (FTW) -- Let's just suppose for a moment that George W. Bush was removed from the White House. Cheney, Powell, Rumsfeld, Ashcroft, Wolfowitz and Rove too. What would that leave us with? It would leave us stuck in hugely expensive, Vietnam-like guerrilla wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It would leave us with the Patriot Act, Homeland Security and Total Information Awareness snooping into every detail of our lives. It would leave us with a government in violation of the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th and 8th Amendments to the Constitution. It would leave us with a massive cover-up of US complicity in the attacks of 9/11 that, if fully admitted, would show not intelligence "failures" but intelligence crimes, approved and ordered by the most powerful people in the country. It would leave us with a government that now has the power to compel mass vaccinations on pain of imprisonment or fine, and with no legal ability to sue the vaccine makers who killed our friends or our children. It would leave us with two and half million unemployed; the largest budget deficits in history; more than $3.3 trillion missing from the Department of Defense; and state and local governments broke to the point of having to cut back essential services like sewers, police, and fire. It would leave us with a federal government that had hit the debt ceiling and was unable to borrow any more money. And we would still be facing a looming natural gas crisis of unimagined proportions, and living on a planet that is slowly realizing that it is running out of oil with no "Plan B". Our airports however, would be very safe, and shares of Halliburton, Lockheed and DynCorp would be paying excellent dividends.
Failure and Crime Are Not the Same: 9/11's Limited Hangouts
by Jamey Hecht, PhD
9 June 2002
A Controlled Burn

For a number of weeks now the smart money has been betting that the whirlwind of admissions and apparently damaging leaks about 9/11 has not been an uncontrolled disaster for the Bush Administration but instead has been a managed attempt at a "controlled burn," which refers to the somewhat counter-intuitive firefighters' practice of lighting small blazes in the path of an advancing wildfire in order to stop it. The name of the game is to admit one kind of wrongdoing in order to obscure another that is worse -- in Watergate parlance, a "limited hangout." Obviously a major part of the Bush Administration's strategy in spinning their prior knowledge of 9/11 is to direct attention to failures down the rungs.

9/11 Evidence - Smoking Gun ... by Cheryl Seal
also at
one of the best articles describing the evidence and the motivations, warnings, the curious nature of the Pentagon attack (on the mostly empty part of the building), the Bush administration's interference with the FBI investigation of al-Qaeda, and much more.

At the very least Bush allowed 9/11 to happen. But the evidence indicates his guilt involves more than just a huge intentional sin of omission – this now seems certain. ...
.... why would Bush admit to having been warned about 9/11 in the first place? In the corporate and political world, this admission is a strategy that has been used over and over by creeps who are guilty of huge crimes and know the heat is on. By confessing to a lesser charge, they try to draw the heat away from the main, more dangerous issue.

Some good points from Cryptome (emphases added) but it would benefit from familiarity with the suppressed warnings and overlapping wargames, which are the "persuasive" evidence he seeks.
December 10, 2007

A and A send:

Cryptome. Thanks for the article. The allegation of CIA and Mossad running the 9/11 attack appears now and then, but some evidence would be more persuasive.

The allegation appears so often it would not be surprising that it is spread by the spies themselves to reinforce how smart, devious and vicious they can be. It would be expected that the spies would try to take credit for the highly successful attack, since so few of their ops could ever measure up to a 9/11. Since they utterly failed to predict and prevent it, why not reap the benefit of rumor-mongering they were the operators of it.

The history of spies is mostly about bungling, claims of being unable to reveal successes, drunkenness, criminality, betrayal of those who trust them, lying to their bosses, all the attributes of outlaws, inepts and misfits.

Spies are not nearly so capable as they claim, which is why they are trained above all else to lie and deceive. They screw up more often than not, and hide it with secrecy or mislead the public with spin, lies, leaks and braggardy -- their credibility is so low as it has to be costumed with fake derring-do and prowess. Ex-spies of CIA and Mossad claim nobody inflates reputation more than these gangs.

Sure, desperate thugs go to extreme lengths to get highly rewarded for what they cannot get by honest work (and spies can never be honest by definition), and it is conceivable they would support a 9/11-grade operation if they had the opportunity -- riding the backs of those more capable is spy SOP.

If the black world was involved in 9/11 it would probably be the military not the civilians. While the military screws up far more than civilians and at a far greater scale of harm and wastefulness, when they do it, it looks more like 9/11. And the military certainly knows how to drop their guardian role when ordered.

The problem to worry about is that posed by worse than 9/11 to come. The national security gargantua is ravenous. Note the follow-on to 9/11 and what it is costing and who it is feeding: those who were being sent to pasture before 9/11.

Four thousand lives on 9/11 and thousands more since then are nothing to national-security-grade ambitions.

For appalling accounts of how inhuman senior military minds think about slaughter and casualities while advancing personal ambitions, read Rick Atkinson's The Liberation Trilogy.