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9/11 Not All Bad for Bush
October 8, 2001
by Lincoln Farnum

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It's been an few days. The news that we've been getting appears to be reflecting a growing hysteria within the media. Each mishap carefully documented on various web news services today was reflexively blamed on the growing forces of terrorism. Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever was detected along the Afghan border, areas where countless refugees might reasonably be expected to overwhelm any possible sanitary arrangements. A Russian commercial airliner flying from Tel Aviv to Siberia was blown up in mid-air. Apparently all of our 'allies' have accepted the evidence that Osama was behind the 9/11 attacks. A crop dusting plane returning from the its cocaine and rain forest defoliation duties in Columbia was lost in the Caribbean and then some guy in Florida comes down with Anthrax (one of only 18 known cases since 1900.) Anything else? Oh yeah, "Senators Tell (Tommy) Thompson His Assurances On Bio-Terrorism Not Believable..." (Duh.) I'm not making this stuff up.

Seems like they're trying to make me nervous.

While the news has been terrible, it hasn't been all bad for the Bush Adminstration. I'm not suspecting or accusing the leaders of our great country to be in any way complicit in this terrible event, that would just be too horrible for even a conspiracy theorist like me to imagine. Still, one can't expect them to look a gift horse in the mouth, can one?

Remember what life was like way back on September 10? The month long summer vacation was over...God, that was a great month, so peaceful. During August the economy lost something like a million jobs, trillions disappeared from the stock market, the Democrats in both the House and the Senate were finally coming together and finding a voice to resist the Bush agenda. Even Al Gore was flirting with public appearances again.

Bush's, or rather Cheney's, Energy Plan was ready to get shot down. The records of meetings of the energy task force (the ones very likely documenting at least one suggestion that a new Middle East Crisis might turn the political tide towards increased drilling in ecologically sensitive areas in the US) were about to be subpoenaed.

The Faith-based initiative looked to be in equally desperate straights, with everyone interested in the Federal largesse unable to agree on the one true faith (or even the many true faiths.)

The 'independent' reviews of the voting results in Florida were nearing release.

The World Bank and World Trade Organization meetings were scheduled in late September. It looked very much as though Washington, D.C. was about to host its largest protests since the Viet Nam War. Huge fences and walls were planned to surround and ostensibly protect our leaders from the unruly mob bent on global (human) equity. The natural rift between Democracy and capitalism was threatening to expose itself.

Bush's approval ratings were low, his agenda was in clear and present danger, and it looked very much as though the millions spent to put him in office, not to mention the political capital, would not realize anywhere near the return that the investors were expecting, no…demanding. What to do?

Well, September 11 changed everything for all of us. But it was a cloud with a big silver lining for the Bush administration (oh, and Gary Condit; remember him?)

It's a brave new world for the Bush administration. They can pretty much do anything they want and just blame it on bin Laden. More layoffs, especially from the airlines (in spite of the $billions the American taxpayers just gave them), blame it on bin Laden. Having trouble keeping track of people that might be criminals? Lets relax a wide spectrum of privacy and civil laws protecting citizens of this country because we might want to monitor a terrorist (a dangerously vague term at best.) Need an excuse for another tax cut for the very wealthy? It's called economic stimulus. Star Wars? Nearly unlimited military budget (Cheney said it was coming all along)? That bin Laden is a very powerful guy.

So, what's next? We need more control of the world's oil supplies. How about placing Afghanistan under UN control (oh yeah, we just started paying our dues again.) Then we can build pipelines through Pakistan to the Indian Ocean. What does Pakistan get from it? Bush wants authorization to sell arms to whomever he wishes, irrespective of previous agreements, and India makes Pakistan very nervous. Afghanistan grows a lot of opium too, hmm…maybe we can merge the terrorist war with the drug war and have an unlimited budget for that too. Yippee, more helicopters for Columbia, and other countries aspiring to 'Light of the World' status.

If we can just keep people nervous enough in the US to maintain the public support.

I'm still afraid that this is going to get really ugly and that a lot of people are going to die. I may be wrong, I'm probably going to be wrong since even the best planned of events have a way of running off on their own. I may be paranoid, hell, I'm likely paranoid. It doesn't mean I'm all-wrong though.

Maybe this is a good time to look at the lemmings and decide not to be one. The shepherd keeps the sheep from the wolf all right, but then the 'saved' sheep just end up on the shepherd's table. Maybe it's not just a choice between the two of them; this is still America (at least for a while).

 
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