Archives for category: Politics

A deliberately provocative headline. But, honestly, I could go my whole life without even hearing “9/11” again. Why? Well, I’ll tell you…


Whenever I think of 9/11, my automatic thought is “right wing political machine.” The two are inextricably linked for me. The GOP, in particular, hammered that association so often for so long at so many opportunities that the two are an alloy and, at this point, utterly inseparable. The right wing political machine is, of course, disgusting and the hijacking of a tragedy like this—itself the result of an actual hijacking—even more so.

The GOP ensured that thousands of people died for a punchline on a bumper sticker.

It’s not real

Further angering is the ridiculous debate over a piece of scrap metal that people half-worship as an avatar to a sky faerie who doesn’t exist. Why is this even being discussed in the 21st century? A million billion shapes in a vast wreckage where real-life people died and there’s not just discussion but debate overone random shape? Are you serious?

Why is energy being expended over this, when it could be directed toward something concretely helpful to living people who need it?


I see “never forget” here and there. A coworker had a good point: At what point does that become “never let go?” 9/11 was used as an excuse to invade another country for basically no good reason, costing us more than lives and money. It was used to invade yet a different country for basically no practical reason, accomplishing nothing and costing yet more lives and money. It spawned a new swath of security theater in airports that, again, accomplishes nothing positive.

I’m reminded of a comedy bit in the TV show The IT Crowd (available on Netflix streaming). One character says “I never know what to say at funerals.” Another says “When you get to the line, just say ‘I’m sorry for your loss’ then move on.” When the first character gets to the widow, he says: “I’m sorry for your loss—move on.”

Yes. Let’s.

True today?
As for the Republicans—how can one regard seriously a frightened, greedy, nostalgic huddle of tradesmen and lucky idlers who shut their eyes to history and science, steel their emotions against decent human sympathy, cling to sordid and provincial ideals exalting sheer acquisitiveness and condoning artificial hardship for the non-materially-shrewd, dwell smugly and sentimentally in a distorted dream-cosmos of outmoded phrases and principles and attitudes based on the bygone agricultural-handicraft world, and revel in (consciously or unconsciously) mendacious assumptions (such as the notion that real liberty is synonymous with the single detail of unrestricted economic license or that a rational planning of resource-distribution would contravene some vague and mystical ‘American heritage’…) utterly contrary to fact and without the slightest foundation in human experience? Intellectually, the Republican idea deserves the tolerance and respect one gives to the dead.