Thursday, December 01, 2005

Top 10 Most Wanted List

Yesterday for some reason I started thinking about the FBI's Top 10 Most Wanted List. Here's something that everybody has heard of, but doesn't really give much thought to. Particularly in today's electronic age, few people go to the post office as often as they used to, and to be honest I can't remember ever seeing the list when I have gone to the post office.

A google search brings the Top 10 list right up, and I followed that up with some research on Wikipedia. Osama (the FBI spells it Usama) is the only guy on the list that anybody has heard of, but the other guys had some really interesting stories. Check out this description of this Irish-American mobster implicated in several murders:

"Bulger is an avid reader with an interest in history. He is known to frequent libraries and historic sites. Bulger is currently on the heart medication Atenolol (50 mg) and maintains his physical fitness by walking on beaches and in parks with his female companion, Catherine Elizabeth Greig. Bulger and Greig love animals and may frequent animal shelters. Bulger has been known to alter his appearance through the use of disguises. He has traveled extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Canada, and Mexico."

The guy is 76 years old and his brother and his younger brother was a prominent politician in Massachusetts and once head of that state's university system. The list has an intersting cross section of criminals: A terrorist, a couple mob bosses, a pedophile, a guy who blew up his family, a drug kingpin.

Despite this list not being in public consciousness, 450 of the 479 people who have been on the list have been caught, and 147 have resulted from public help. Still, I think the list needs to be updated for a new era. Cable TV networks like E! and VHI consist almost entirely of countdown shows these days, and I think the FBI needs a network. They could show X-Files re-runs, documentaries, tips on how to fight crime, home movies of J. Edgar Hoover in women's underwear, etc..., but they should make a big budget countdown show every week of the Top 10 Most Wanted, sprinkled with success stories of people already captured. Kind of like America's Most Wanted, only with more sensationalism (if that is possible). They should also e-mail everyone in the country the Top 10 list every week. Spam isn't spam if it comes from the FBI.