Let’s follow along. Jack and Tony are racing to stop an African Warlord’s colonel, and his businessmen conspirators from using their firewall penetrator to wreck a whole lot of damage on America’s infrastructure. The problem is that Tony and his supposed Ex-CTU pals gave them the CIP device in the first place as part of an undercover operation to find out which supporters of the Sengalan warlord had penetrated the US government, at a current cost of several hundred lives. Apparently it didn’t occur to anyone to say take a milder approach by you know, tracing bank accounts and international payments. Previously 24 was about stopping some sort of weapon from being deployed by terrorists, now it’s about racing to stop a weapon that was given by them into the hands of the terrorists, in order to stop what amounted to white collar crime. Meanwhile the White House is helpless to do anything about all the planes in the air, because it’s not like you could tell the pilots to stop taking directions on a frequency that air traffic controllers can be locked out of, and just use cell phones or satellite phones or lots of flares. Meanwhile the White House keeps the task force in place, without either pulling back, which would stop the attacks, or go on the offensive which would give the good guys some negotiating leverage. So how stupid is 24 so far? Almost mindblowingly stupid. But what else is new?