Friday, October 31, 2008
It's Time for Some Clarity
And you can almost see her watchamacallit. Sounds right to me.
NOT AN ANNIVERSARY. Obama has taken to calling the events of September 11, 2001, "a tragedy," as if it were a simple plane crash. His conservative counterparts are mired in arguments about which Democratic administration the Obamessiah's would be a throwback to -- FDR, LBJ, or that earlier "JC," Jimmy Carter. And while they squabble with each other about this and about the future of conservatism (Obamacons vs. the faithful, elites vs just folks, elites vs elites, individualistic bloggers vs neo-netroots, you pick it), most seem to be forgetting that the details of analysis are, at this point, irrelevant. The most alarming retro aspect of an Obama presidency is that whether it most closely resembles Carter's or even Huey Long's brief dictatorship of Louisiana, its time window will certainly be pre-9/11.
Democrats, liberals, the media, the Obama 'movement' are all in a state of denial. They don't like the look of the world the way it is, and so they respond by constantly trying to turn back the clock. They want to repeal the Iraq War altogether, thereby wiping away the need to make a responsible decision about that country's future as well as the present deadly impasse with Iran. They want to undo the harsh realities of the Patriot Act, Guantanamo, the Department of Homeland Security, and even the war in Afghanistan they once supported. That's why they remain so focused on the lone figure of Osama bin Laden. In some part of their numbed and impaired consciousness, it's really still the late 1990s, and if we could place him properly and legally in custody, everything which has happened in the past seven years might yet be prevented. In all these respects, an Obama election has come to represent for them an abracadabra moment that will magically reboot the world.
I'm not saying this is a rational viewpoint. It's a fantasy, of course, but it's one they feed and sustain through a variety of stratagems. That's why the images of 9/11 have been banished from the airwaves. Without those vividly intense reminders, sense memory fades and a determined mind can transform a violently murderous attack into a mere sad event. That's why it has become an offence for any (Republican) politician to mention that day and its terrible costs in the course of a campaign for office. It's become insensitive, exploitative, even odious and obscene to remind the American electorate that there's a considerable population of people out there who want us dead, including innocent women and children.
Such self-deception manifests itself in other ways as well. Why has the left become so psychotically fixated on the myth that the Iraq War came about as a result of "lies" by a handful of Bush administration officials? Even their own leadership saw the same intelligence and came to the same conclusions about the threats posed by Saddam Hussein, which were not confined to weapons of mass destruction but included many other alarming behaviors and hostile acts. Refusing ever to move past the circumstances of the initial decision to go to war enabled the Democrats in congress and at large to avoid taking any responsibility for what to do next. In the end all their fulminations and accusations reduced their role in the policy-making process from what it should have been to a tantrum demand for a "do-over."
Worse, they have chosen to use their denial about the Iraq War to cover their lack of any policy whatsoever about the middle east. Because the Iraq War shouldn't have been fought, they're not obliged to condemn Hamas or Hizbollah. Or the Iranian threat to Israel. It's just George Bush's fault (never mind that this particular clock has been ticking since the Iranians took Americans hostage in 1979), and the only right policy is the backward tick-tick-tick of the senatorial clock.
The grandest of all their acts of denial, however, has been the Obama presidential campaign. O Glory. Let's deny fucking everything. There is no War on Terror. There is no foreign policy issue that can't be ajudicated by simply talking with our enemies in a spirit of free and friendly cooperation.There is no challenge facing the world that can't be met by abdicating all responsibility to the two most impotent, cynical, and racist oligarchies in the world, the United Nations and the European Union. It's perfectly appropriate to elect as president a man who has never been in charge of anything and has never spent as much time in any job as he will spend in his first term in the White House. That's great, even for longtime conservatives like Peggy Noonan, Kathleen Parker, David Brooks, Chris Buckley, and other women who have to change their underwear every time this man speaks in public.
Deep breath. There is no foreign policy mandate. 9/11 didn't happen, not really. The Iraq War didn't happen because we were lied to. The War in Afghanistan didn't happen, either, because Clinton would never have been enough of a fool to let Osama bin Laden get away with five, count'em five, terrorist acts we didn't respond to. Sigh of relief. So. (Second sigh of relief.) We can -- absolutely, positively -- start over. With Obama.
And now, everybody, we have the greatest act of pretend ever attempted. A man who has done nothing, ever, promises that he can heal the entire world with "hope and change." Two words, backed up by no accomplishments of any kind. He has a pleasing baritone voice, a lot like David Hasselhoff (thus explaining why the Germans like him so much), but he's never studied history, economics, or American geography. In fact, he's a fucking dolt about everything but constitutional law, except that he thinks the Constitution should be ditched for African-American Liberation Theology.
Here's the plum. Imagine this as you watch the video below. We Americans, the ones who join in the delusion of denial, decide together that the best way to deal with an all-out attack on America is to elect as our president the son of a muslim African who spent his childhood in muslim Indonesia and returned to the U.S. to build a political career via alliances with black nationalists, American-hating Christians who honored anti-semitic black muslims, former SDS terrorists, and PLO diplomats.
Which leads me to my last instruction. Watch this video. All the way through. It will be hard. I couldn't do it the first or the second time. It's too painful. I'm begging you to watch the whole thing nonetheless, now, on the eve of the election.
The author, Peregrine John, maintains that it's only a chronology. It's much more than that. At the beginning, you get to see the Twin Towers thrusting through the clouds. This is who we are, who we were, the most vivid possible example of American exceptionalism. We just shone.
Then comes the attack. And I've spoken with Peregrine John about this, and he denies it, but if you look, you can see that there is a face of predation in almost every single frame of the assault on the towers. I don't want to overplay it, but this is no accident. It was no "tragedy." It was an attack on the United States of America by forces of, well, evil.
Watch from frame to frame. Does it not look as if the Towers are being eaten?
Regardless. Look at the footage. What in the Obama campaign convinces you that he feels any of the pain -- or meaning -- of this loss? What makes you think he would fight in remembrance?
An event of this sort is too huge to be dismissed as a random tragedy. It sends out ripples. It changes everything that happens after. The world doesn't like us so much because we noticed this happened? Fuck them. But that's just one ripple. The ripples in sum go out and out and out. Eventually, they begin to diminish, as with the declining birth rate of all European nations, while the muslims move in. But an event like this doesn't simply disappear. What's amazing in retrospect is how measured the U.S. response has been. We could have killed them all. Dead. Sicilian style. That's one part of us. But we didn't. We're Americans. Go back to the image of the Twin Towers poking through the clouds. That's us. America. Alone in the world of definite dreams.
But if we can't rebuild those towers, the world will subside into a new barbarian age.
Watch the video. And taste every moment.
Then pass this post on to all your friends. And tell them to pass it on.