Unanswered Questions

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On Friday night we had a mother on whose daughter was just killed (Oct. 9) by a drunk driver — a drunk driver who has three prior drunk-driving convictions. This new arrest, should the driver be convicted, will be No. 4 and this time, he killed someone: a 22-year-old woman — our guest's daughter. The accused driver is also illegally — you read right, illegally — in this country.

The mother had e-mailed me earlier in the week to please publicize this tragedy — just 10 days old — and to ask for help in getting relief for the huge problem of illegal immigration. She is right — this is a huge problem.

In this mother's consuming grief, she is pleading for our leaders to do something so no other mother must get the 2 a.m. knock on the window that she did. The coroner knocked on her window and told her that her child is dead.

We get many e-mails, but hers stood out. How could we not try and help? We investigated what she wrote me in the e-mail and put her on the air Friday night. I hope her segment had an impact on those who watched and that maybe we can all put pressure on our elected officials to really take a look at this problem and work towards solving it.

Imagine: Three prior drunk-driving offenses and illegally in this country! This driver was deported in March of this year after finishing the sentence for his 3rd drunk driving, but obviously found his way back in the United States and then to another drunk-driving incident — this time, an accident and death.

To top it — if it can be "topped" — the illegal was driving a company truck. That means some company hired him — an illegal with no driver's license (I assume that when he picked up all these drunk-driving offenses his driver's license was taken away... if it wasn't, I just don't know what to say.)

So this poor 22-year-old woman lost her life and this mother is now consumed with grief and now we should all demand the answers to the following questions:

1) Did this man have a driver's license? If so, which state issued it and why was it not taken away after the first drunk driving offense or the second or the third?

2) Why did this company hire someone illegally in this country? And is anyone investigating this? And why would the company hire him to drive and give him a company vehicle to drive? Will any action be taken against this company for hiring an illegal or for giving his the keys to a vehicle when he should have forfeited that right? Did the company investigate whether he had a valid driver's license?

3) How did he slip back in this country after being deported?

After the segment with this grieving mother, I had to do what we often have to do: that awkward tease into the next segment. As luck would have it, the next segment was the FOX Blast — that odd collection of videos of the day. It is hard to go from a segment where you feel sorry for someone who has been abused by the system to... well, an odd video. It felt uncomfortable for me to tease the video under the circumstances.

I suppose you might think we should plan our segments better so that I don't put myself in that position of having to go from the grieving mother whose grief can be felt through the screen to a sort of goofy video. You are probably right, but it is hard to realize this when you are making plans for the show — when the plans are simply on paper, the rundown. You really don't know for sure how segments will play out until you actually experience them.

As an aside, here is some info from behind the scenes (and I bet no other cable news show staff would admit this!) Late in the evening on Friday we had a discussion among our staff about a tortoise and turtle (and the difference) and a rabbit and a hare (and the difference). You would think we would all know the differences and not have to research it, but not true. We needed a little studying.

Why? As noted above, on Friday's show we planned to show (and did) the FOX Blast video. It was given to us with the title and description informing us that it included a video of a turtle. Or was it a tortoise?

Before showing it on the air, I previewed it and saw that it was described as a video of a 3-legged turtle with a 4th "leg" ( a wheel that was given him/her to help walk.) When I previewed the video my antenna went up: Is this a turtle? I was not sure. How does one know? Others on the staff confessed to not being sure if it was a tortoise or a turtle, so I was not alone.

I thought we should fact check whether it was a turtle or a tortoise — even though it was pitched to us as a turtle video. I also told my senior producer if we were wrong about this that every turtle/tortoise expert in the country would e-mail me over the weekend and I would have to confess in the blog on Monday to being a dunce. I thought I would do some research on this before the show, make sure I got it right, and head this off at the pass! I have enough problems....

After research, we concluded that the guy in the video (assuming it was a guy… and frankly, I don't know how to tell the sex of a turtle or a tortoise — our research did not take us that far or in that direction), is not a turtle. He is a tortoise... or so at least I concluded. If I am wrong now, I am a real dope since I actually did a little study and came up with this answer.

Thus, I said tortoise — not turtle — in teasing the video. P.S. the key is in the feet... the turtle has webbed feet because he spends so much time in the water. (And don't tell me you already knew this and learned it in the 3rd grade!)

Now for some show updates: Tonight we are in Chicago and later in the week we might be in Vegas. One week from tonight our show will certainly air from Vegas — we are going around the country to thank viewers for making FOX News No. 1 and to celebrate our 10 years on the air. Our next celebration stop is Vegas.

We may go to Vegas a few days early to work on a special to air later in the month that is unrelated to our 10-year anniversary show. I will have a better idea of the travel plans later today when I get marching orders from the specials unit at FOX. Yes, I take orders, I don't give them....

Now for some e-mails:

E-mail No. 1

I am sorry I missed the piece on Joseph Duncan's laptop. Is the issue logging into his laptop or un-encrypting the data on the laptop. It is very easy to hack the laptop and get in. I can not believe that the FBI doesn’t not have people that can do it. Hell, if he bought the laptop himself and set it up, he might have not even given the local administrator account a password. This is overlooked by most people. If the issue is encrypted files on the laptop, this is harder, but nothing I don't think the NSA can handle.
Greg Lucas, MCSE
Technical Support Analyst

E-mail No. 2

Second your husband's solution! Find a 14-year-old geek, they'd probably gain access to Duncan's computer within about 5 minutes. My nephew could probably re-launch Sputnik I with an X-Box controller!
Dallas, TX

E-mail No. 3

Hi Greta,
Although the comments contained in E-mail No. 10 have some validity, the assertion that the U.S. gov't could stop this type of encryption is false. There are many other programs other than PGP that are made outside the US and can be used. If the encryption was done correctly there is little the gov't can do to get the data. I have worked in the computer security field for over 10 years and watched the ridiculous efforts by our gov't to contain this technology. It is not possible. Patrick
Concord, CA

E-mail No. 4

I would recommend bringing in a security specialist if you want to know how encryption and in particular PGP works, but your previous e-mailer is correct. From what I understand, pretty much the only way to get into a computer that is properly secured is to social engineer your way into it (meaning: get the user to reveal how to get in). The problem is that most computers are not properly secured.

E-mail No. 5

Hi Greta,
I too was thinking like you husband. Take it to the little boy who was hacking computers a few years back and let him crack it open for the FBI. E-mail No. 10 was interesting to say the least. If all of that is true they probably won't ever get into the computer. It would be nice to solve any other crimes they could using this computer, but for now the good thing is that Mr. Duncan is going to jail for life.
The FBI only thinks there could be more information on there about other crimes he might have committed. They don't know for sure. It sounds like a real bargaining chip for Mr. Duncan with no real proof of what they might find. I hope they make no deals with Duncan or his attorneys for access to this computer.
I hope the federal charges are brought against Mr. Duncan and he's convicted and sentenced to death. He can keep his computer password. We might never know who else he has wronged (if there is anyone else), but the death sentence will be justice for everything he has done to everyone and anyone and security that he won't ever hurt anyone else again.
Barb Christianson
Grand Junction, CO

E-mail No. 6

The rambling e-mail about PGP (E-mail No. 10) incorrectly stated that PGP developer Phil Zimmerman had been arrested for some sort of hacking crime. That is false.
As for PGP-style encryption, if the files on the laptop were encrypted using PGP or a similar program, and Joseph Duncan chose a secure password (i.e., one that is not easy to guess or to brute force using a dictionary or other attack), then it will be all-but-impossible for the FBI or anyone else to view the files without Duncan's cooperation.
Even using the faster computers in the world, the FBI would be looking at several hundred years to crack a PGP-protected file with a secure password.
Brian Carnell
Kalamazoo, MI

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