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It's a beautiful, clear fall day....

.... just as it was eleven years ago, on September 11.

I'm not much for the forced emotion evoked by the collective rituals of the market state any more ("I'll never forget it; I remember right where I was; I was my apartment in Philly, and I turned on the TV and saw a tower, burning...."). And, however much I regret, on a personal level, the pain of friends who lost friends, and the wound to a great world city, Manhattan, I'm not much for compliance with the forced emotions evoked by our security apparatus, either, or for treating a perfectly predictable (and predicted) episode of imperial blowback as if it were the Battle of the Somme.*

So I'll just post this extract from a letter in my email. Guess who it's from?

On this 9/11 anniversary, we remember those who were killed or harmed in the terrorist attacks eleven years ago. We thank our brave troops serving in harm’s way. And we reaffirm our faith and commitment to an open and free democracy that will never be bowed by terrorism.

The lasting lesson of 9/11 is that good does triumph over evil and that the courageous spirit of America will always prevail.

Of course, our "open and free democracy" has been systematically betrayed and destroyed on a thoroughly bipartisan basis, and Obama's been worse than Bush, because he normalized everything (to silence or cheers by much of "the left," too).

So the letter is bullshit; recursive bullshit, too, because of you accept any of its assumptions you end up down the rabbit hole and trapped in the very state of affairs -- "open and free democracy" -- that's at the heart of the mail's Big Lie.

So who's it from? Cynthia Dill, the Democrat running in my state. The letter is no more and no less banal than the letter every other legacy party functionary is blasting out today, no doubt; which is either terrifying or exhilirating, depending. (Monocultures collapse, an exhilirating process if you can ride the avalanche successfully.)

NOTE * And that's before we get to whether "our" government was in any way complicit in the attacks. And here there is a terrible tangle of discourse and memory. For example, I "remember" that the Bin Ladens were flown out of the country while every other flight was grounded. But no, that is not true. Where even to begin?

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gizzardboy's picture
Submitted by gizzardboy on

Every 9-11 there is a reading of the names of those killed in the attacks, so that they are not forgotten. It makes me wonder how long it would take to read the names of those killed in Iraq, based on the weapons-of-mass-destruction lie and the false linking of Iraq to the 9-11 attacks. Or if you want a shorter list, how about the collateral killing from drone strikes?

Somehow the killing of Americans on our home soil is supposed to be a big deal, while those darker colored folks killed somewhere far away in our name, matter a whole lot less.

lizpolaris's picture
Submitted by lizpolaris on

Yesterday I came across this short video about the boat evacuation of lower Manhattan. It was hastily organized by the US Coast Guard, who observed that civilians were already doing it after the towers collapsed.

While it was a very impressive effort, I found there were some unanswered questions in my mind after viewing it. Apparently this boatlift was needed because other routes of evacuation were cut off - roads, subways, etc. What authority decided it was a good idea to cut off evacuation routes away from a major disaster area, stranding thousands of commuters with no where to go and no way to get home? Here in humble North Carolina, we have standing evacuation plans in place due to frequent hurricanes. Is there no such plan for Manhattan Island? And if not, why not? If there was an evacuation plan in place, why was it not used? Mayor Guiliani's plan that day was - hey, guys, fend for yourself? Also, how long was it before normal transportation was made available and who made that decision? Was any support or relief provided to those stranded while transportation was cut off (other than by residents)? If not, why not? Was any thought given to the consequences of isolating the island and what to do about it?

Why was the boat evacuation allowed? If other modes of transportation were cut off, it must have been deemed prudent not to allow anyone in or out. So why were the US Coast Guard and other boaters exempted from this policy? I'm not suggesting anything they did was wrong, but if there was some overriding security or other issue which required the suspension of travel, why was the obvious avenue of water travel ignored? And if there was no risk of evacuating people by boat, why did this risk exist for other modes of transportation?