But I Know It When I See It

BUT I KNOW IT WHEN I SEE IT….Patrick Nielsen Hayden, ruminating over the DoS attacks that haven taken down several blogs over the past week, takes a crack at defining terrorism:

I may not have a precise and bulletproof definition of ?terrorism? in my hip pocket, but I do know this: a disruption that does not require me to get out of my chair isn?t ?terrorism?, it?s an annoyance. Buildings being blown up, people being killed: definitely terrorism. Weblog inaccessible for a few hours, hobbyists cranky about it: not terrorism.

I guess that covers the extremes, now all we have to do is work on the middle ground. I also liked this:

I wish I didn’t have the uneasy feeling that there’s more to this story, but I get that feeling from most stories like this, these days.

Boy howdy, ain’t that the truth? I feel like that about once an hour or so these days.

Washington Monthly - Donate Today and your gift will be doubled!

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation