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Mark Steyn On The San Bernardino Terrorist Attack

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The transcript:

HH: The terrorists win if we do not play Feline Groovy, Mark Steyn’s new CD available at Would you agree with that, Mark Steyn?

MS: Yes, absolutely. I think that’s a great line. If you don’t buy Feline Groovy, the terrorists will win. By the way, that would be banned under the Taliban, and it would be banned under ISIS. So probably many of your listeners are saying that’s the kind of firm hand of government we need right here in America.

HH: There’s so much terrible and horrible news, I wanted to start on a light note, and you’re going to stay two segments with me, Mark Steyn, and I appreciate that today. But you do release this CD around Christmastime, but this is not a Christmas CD. This is a year round CD.

MS: It is. And it’s actually inspired, I wound up acquiring a new cat last year, and a very friendly and affectionate cat, and I live in the country where a lot of cats I’ve had are just like kind of barn cats, and can be a bit standoffish. But this particular cat was very friendly, and was always nuzzling around my ankles as I came downstairs first thing in the morning. And after a while, I just started absent-mindedly singing cat songs to the cat. And on about the sixth or seventh one, I realized there are actually a lot of good cat songs, and so I put together an album of cat songs. And it’s got, you know, things that people would expect like I Tawt I Taw A Puddy Tat, and the Siamese Cat song from Lady and the Tramp, and we’ve done, we’ve tried to do something a little different with each of them. So it’s…

HH: Well, this is terrific, but I need to know where the Abbey Road studio equivalent for Mark Steyn is.

MS: It’s actually Angel Studios, which is a couple of miles east of Abbey Road, and in fact, our senior engineer used to work at Abbey Road many years ago. But it’s the studio where I like to do my little musical things for many years. And we all have a good time. But what I like about it is when, like for example, Feline Groovy is essentially the Simon and Garfunkel song with one syllable mispronounced. And Emma, Jan and Mary, who are my delightful backing singers on that track, I like the way when you say, they want to run it through, and they go wait a minute, three’s a typing error in here. And I say no, actually, and they nod thoughtfully, and then treat the idea with utter sincerity. So it was enjoyable.

HH: Well, Mark, someday in the future, when you release another of your albums, and you do a cover with Mark Steyn doing a crosswalk with Rush ahead of you and then Mark Steyn, I want to be third in line, and then maybe Mark Levin. And we could be crossing the studio road near Angel Studio. But I don’t want to have, I want to have shoes on, because that starts too many rumors if you don’t have shoes on.

MS: No, no, that’s fair. Actually, in St. Georges, Bermuda a couple of years ago, I happened to see the four Uighurs, the Chinese Muslims that Obama released from Gitmo. I happened to be driving through St. Georges in Bermuda, and they, these four Uighur Muslims that Obama dumped on Bermuda were crossing the crosswalk just like a Uighur cover band of the Beatles doing Abbey Road in St. Georges, Bermuda. So the jihad and the music, it all ties together.

HH: And that is the perfect transition to the terrorists really winning, and they have won, because I have been watching a lot of news. I’ll be on CNN later tonight with Don Lemon and Nick Kristof to make this one point. When the backdrop to all the terrorism stories of the last 24 hours says shooting rampage, that is the terrorists winning. We’re afraid to call, we are hesitant to call Islamist terror in America Islamist terror. I don’t understand it, Mark Steyn, but it’s everywhere.

MS: Yeah, and in fact, it’s got worse. Political correctness was a big part of why 3,000 people died 14 years ago. At least two of the check-in counters, the one in Portland, Maine, where Mohammed Atta and Co. boarded the plane to get to Boston, and then also the one, the United flight I think out of Washington, the check-in clerks at the airlines had concerns, and then said oh, no, no, no, I mustn’t think that, what am I doing, it’s racist, these are perfectly respectable businessmen. So we have a contradiction here, because we have a Department of Homeland Security slogan. If you see something, say something. And yet if you see something, your instincts tell you that for political correctness reasons, you are not to say anything. The stories that have been coming out about the neighbors being suspicious of all the stuff that was going on in the weeks beforehand, but thinking of them as impure thoughts, racist thoughts, Islamophobic thought, this makes it impossible. No matter how big the security state gets, if you have a politically correct, dishonest, politico media culture, you will never be able to have a security state big enough that will keep you safe from these things. And I think they’re training us, actually, to accept these kind of incidents as a routine feature of life. That’s what’s actually horrible about it. They’re basically saying give it up, accept these violent attacks, because they’re going to happen. And the price of countering them, which is addressing this subject honestly, is too high to bear.

HH: I agree with everything you just said, and I want to raise the three questions which are obvious to me as a member of the media, but which I have not yet seen asked or answered. What did his colleagues know at the San Bernardino County of Health? Now some of them are traumatized, some of them are wounded, but some of them are avoiding the cameras and not being…it’s a big department, Mark Steyn. I know departments of health in counties, because I’ve served with them for a long time alongside of the head of the Orange County one on a board. They’re vast. And so if this fellow was in any way suspicious, people in that Department of Health will know, but they’re not being asked, or they’re not willing to talk. Number two, where did he worship, if he did in fact go to worship? Has no one asked that question? Unbelievably, the FBI was not asked in the briefing today. And number three, how did his brother-in-law end up at a CAIR press conference last night? Why wasn’t he talking to the Bureau late into the night?

MS: Well, that’s one of the most amazing things I’ve seen ever, which suggests that even the federal investigative agencies are so cowed by political correctness and cultural sensitivity, as you say, the first thing that happens when you have a suspect is you want to get to his friends and his family, and start talking to them before other people get to them, and they all have a chance to agree their stories. And yet we see something where 14 people are dead, and there’s the usual bazillion federal, state and local agencies all investigating the thing, and yet one of the people they ought to be talking to is standing up on television at a press conference giving the CAIR-approved version of events. That speaks, that says an awful lot about what’s, the culture of the FBI that they allowed that to happen.

HH: It does. It speaks to investigating with two arms tied behind your back.

MS: Exactly.

HH: And that’s not what happened after 9/11. And in my Department of Justice days in the Cold War, when investigations went on into espionage, you didn’t tell people that they could go on television. You told them they couldn’t. You didn’t arrest people for no probable cause, but you told them not to talk to other people for the very reason you just articulated. You don’t want a narrative out there that people can adopt and defend.

MS: No, and this is what’s extraordinary to me. I said today, you know, all these stories are different, and they’re all the same. The situation you were saying, what did his workmates make of this guy, what did they say to him, we’ve been here before with the same result, 14 people dead. Captain Hassan is, as he then was, was the only mass murderer to give a Power Point presentation to Army psychologists about what he was planning to do. And they were, all got a bit sheepish and a bit embarrassed. This is the Army. This is the Army, and they decided it would be too political sensitive to get rid of the guy, so they promoted him to major and sent him off to Fort Hood where he killed 14 people. Every story is different, and every story is exactly the same.

HH: Isn’t it amazing we do not know if he had a regular house of worship, if there was a mosque that he went to? Isn’t it odd that we don’t know that?

MS: We’ve been assured by John Kerry and Barack Obama that none of this is anything to do with Islam. So why would the mosque be relevant? You know, the President this morning, he’s got a chance to undo the stupid remarks he made yesterday, and instead he says oh, it may be workplace related and all the rest of it. So we’ve got, the President, from the President, the most powerful man on Earth, supposedly, the leader of the free world, has told his 300 million subjects that you’re guilty of bad think if you start thinking this has anything to do with where the guy worshipped.

HH: I will be right back with Mark Steyn.

— – – —

HH: I happen to like Al Stewart quite a lot, Mark Steyn, and I’m glad to see that you covered the Year Of The Cat. That’s a terrific cover.

MS: Yeah, we put Siamese, the Siamese Cat song from Lady And The Tramp in, and used it for the sort of instrumental passages with a great bamboo flute on it, played by Andy Findon, and I love that bamboo flute sound on it. But the last time any foreign bamboo flautist landed, I think it was at Logan Airport, the zealots of Homeland Security confiscated the bamboo flutes and destroyed them. So they can get the bamboo flutes, but they can’t get the terrorists. If we simply issued every terrorist a bamboo flute, there would never be another successful terrorist strike in America again.

HH: I’m going to have to investigate that more deeply before CNN tonight. I want to remind everyone I’ll be on talking, taking this point of view, which has been not on CNN a lot today, that this was terrorism and people had better call it that and name it with Don Lemon and Nicholas Kristof. I’ll be wearing my Navy blue and gold tie, by the way, because of the outrage done to Navy quarterback Kenan Reynolds on the ESPN Nissan Heisman house balloting, where he was deleted, blacklisted, actually, Kenan Reynolds was. He was winning, and that was inappropriate for ESPN and Nissan, so they took him off the ballot, Mark Steyn. That sounds a little familiar to me. When you’re trying to manage a result, you manage the options, and so they’ve limited the options of this discussion to a gun control issue. And here’s my question. I don’t know if you saw Adam Schiff. He is a California Congressman. Earlier today, I wish I had this on tape, he said, and I’m paraphrasing, but very close to Wolf Blitzer, Wolf, we need magazine limits, we need universal backgrounds, because even if they wouldn’t have stopped yesterday, they would help in some other place at some other time, because of course, neither of those things would have stopped yesterday.

MS: No, this is, this isn’t, I mean, for a start, it’s happening, in the gun-free zones of Paris and Brussels, only two groups of people have guns – the government and the terrorists. And that would be the same thing here. There’s no southern border. So any Islamic group that wants to bring in weaponry can bring it across the southern border of the United States. That’s not what’s going on here. That is like Londoners during the Blitz when the Luftwaffe is strafing London night after night after night, saying oh, we need to have airplane control, we must pass a law against it. What is happening here is there is an ideology, a global ideology. When Obama talks about having contained ISIS, what he basically means is he’s contained it to the planet. It’s not yet got an operating base on Mars. But basically, it’s everywhere around the planet now, and it has enormous, it’s simply the most effective iteration of the moment of an Islamic supremacism with huge appeal to second and third generation Muslims, young Muslims who have grown up in the West, and loathe the societies they live in and of which they’re citizens. And nobody’s saying that means 100% or even 50% or 30%. But a significant percentage of them, like this guy, he’s got a great job. He’s been working for the county for five years. It’s an undemanding job with great benefits. His wife is a pharmacist. These are great, stable, middle, well-remunerated middle class jobs, and they’ve been doing them for years, and they could have lifelong careers, and it’s more important to them to kill people in the name of an ideology. And when your Congressman says stuff like that, he’s basically saying you guys, he’s basically telling his constituents you guys are just going to be shot and bombed and stabbed and have your head cut off every so often, and that’s just the price you have to pay, because it’s better that than that we should talk about this honestly.

HH: And let me contrast that with this story, Mark Steyn. This is in the way back machine from March of 2000 in Irvine, California. It begins, “They had planned to be rich by now, the doctor and the businessman. In December of 1997, Dr. Larry Ford and his partner owned Biofem, Pat Riley, issued a 29 page blueprint. By now, according to plan, Inner Confidence should have been on store shelves. Instead, Ford is dead and Riley is in hiding. And in case it gets more bizarre as time goes by, police say Ford, a soft-spoken researcher and practicing Mormon, may have been behind the plot to murder Riley, who was shot in his face as he arrived at Biofem’s Irvine Spectrum offices, February 28th. The gunman remains at large. They went on to find WMD in Dr. Ford’s refrigerator and buried on his Irvine home grounds. They dug into everything about him in almost real time, whereas, but because he was a Mormon, they would discuss that, whereas we don’t know anything about these killers yesterday beyond what you just said. And in fact, in this culture of suppressing information, bad information, like they were wearing GoPros, not true, gets out there and gets spread around, because the government doesn’t tell us the obvious stuff like who are the terrorists he was talking to.

MS: No, and this is why you can’t solve this with intelligence. It would bankrupt the country. If you, this guy had one degree of separation from terrorists. In other words, he’s calling terrorists, terrorist suspects, and terrorist suspects are calling him. So his number is in the system. And yet he’s one degree of separation away from the terrorists, so they don’t get him. So they’re not going to get people who are two or three degrees of separation away. You know, we’ve talked before on your show, Hugh, about the German police’s estimate of what it costs just to provide surveillance of one known suspicious figure. If you add up the diversion of resources that would be required to track everyone like this fellow, it will bankrupt, there’d be, you talk about the Social Security thing, you talk about Obamacare, there would be nothing as expensive as this. It would absolutely bankrupt us.

HH: But let me ask you this, Mark. You know how after 9/11, we had the commission, and we went super-sleuthing to find out where the failure had been on George W. Bush’s watch. If he was known to the FBI, if he was on a watch list, do you trust this government to tell us?

MS: No, I don’t, I mean, because what we have, again, you know, to reprise my old line, all the stories are different, and they’re all the same. We had a situation where the Russians, the FSB, fingered one of the Tsarnaev brothers to the United States government, and the United States government did nothing about it. We had a situation where the panty bomber, his own dad, went to the US embassy in Nigeria in Lagos, and said what his son was up to, and again, the United States government did nothing about it. And so you’re going to, it becomes very, very difficult to, so the whole Democrat model, the John Kerry model, the law enforcement model, doesn’t work unless you’re prepared to accept a hell of a lot of corpses.

HH: Or, and it doesn’t work because you have to accept a lot of lies, or because, Hillary Clinton has been lying about her server for two years now and nobody cares, Mark Steyn. And so I don’t know that we could ever really expect to get an honest answer about these terrorists, and whether or not they were on anybody’s radar. I am skeptical of that. I’m not skeptical, though, of Feline Groovy, Mark Steyn’s brand new CD. He stayed two segments with me, so go and order two copies of Feline Groovy today. Thank you, Mark, a grim day. The names have not yet been released of the dead. I’ll bring them to you when they are.

End of interview.


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