We’re instituted full background checks, body scanners and cavity searches at my home for all guests, which keeps me pretty busy, so this will be a short post. You can’t be too careful! Because they hate our freedoms, we’ve taken them away for safekeeping.
Here’s a fun thing for today while we’re all reflecting. I guess the cool political thing to do is ask “Are you better off now?” so let’s just do that:
State of Things September 11, 2001
Iraq opposed Iran, helping establish a balance of power in the Middle East. Any danger Saddam was worth was contained by the no-fly zones and had been, successfully, since 1991.
Iraq had no WMDs.
Iran’s plans were cooled by an enemy on its western border, Iraq, and one on its eastern border, the Taliban.
Al Qaeda was active in Afghanistan.
The Taliban controlled much of Afghanistan.
The US was not at war, and 4,486 Americans had not died in Iraq and 1,935 had not died in Afghanistan. A bunch o’ brown people were still alive. Suicide was not the most common cause of death in our military.
The US had a chunky budget surplus and had not spent three trillion dollars on wars. Americans got a tax rebate we had so much cash.
The US was not well-known among nations as a torturer, a keeper of secret prisons, an assassin with drones.
America was represented abroad primarily by diplomats.
Americans at home were secure, protected from abuses by their government by the First and Fourth Amendments.
Iraq had no WMDs.
Gas was about $1.50 a gallon in the US.
State of Things September 11, 2012
Iran has become a dominant power in the Middle East, with well-established ties into Iraq and Afghanistan.
China has also made healthy economic inroads in Afghanistan, as well as Africa. They hold a good chunk of America’s debt.
Al Qaeda is active in Afghanistan. Also Yemen, Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan and many other places the franchise never held ground in before 9/11.
The Taliban control much of Afghanistan.
The US national debt is over $16 trillion dollars and growing growing growing growing…
The US has assets in the fight in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, all over Africa, Guatemala, Yemen, used to in Libya, probaly in Syria, and has suffered drone strikes on all sort of other places, including the Philippines.
The US government ctively and continuously spies on Americans, particularly through electronic means. Once aimed only abroad, the NSA now devotes a substantial portion of its mighty resources inside the US.
The US government drone assassinates American Citizen abroad without trial.
America is represented abroad primarily by soldiers.
Iraq still has no WMDs. But other new places do or soon will.
The amount of oil flowing from Iraq is about the same as it was in 2001.
Gas is about $4.00 a gallon in the US.
So, are you better off? The traditional anniversary gift for an eleventh anniversary is something made of silk or linen, so for you America, here is a linen hankie to cry into. Can’t afford a silk one.
For a more sober reflection on how far we have fallen from 9/10/01, have a look at Morris Davis’ latest article.