Editor’s Note: Personally, I don’t believe that 9/11 was anyone’s fault in government. I think it would have happened whether George Bush or Al Gore were president, because we’re an open society that values that openness. And when you’re facing an enemy with no respect for human life (their own or anyone else’s), events like the destruction of the World Trade Center are going to happen. Hence, no single politician should be blamed. However, you can’t talk sense to Republicans, who think the solution to every problem is conservatism, and the cause of every problem is liberalism. At least one person made an effort to answer the question I posed in the second paragraph. Good for you, Maura Mudd.
9/11 Conservatives and Liberals
9/11, the party line is that it wasn’t Bush’s fault (even though it happened
on his watch) because Bill Clinton had failed to “get” bin Ladin. Meanwhile,
W’s inability to get bin Laden also wasn’t his fault, and the fact that
President Obama did earns him no credit, because his success was the result of
W’s prior good works. None of this is a reasonable 9/11 epiphany — it only
makes sense to already-committed conservatives.
course, 9/11 conservatives are no more monolithic than any other Republicans:
They range from the moderate Right to the wingnuts, like ex-Congressman Alan
West, who told Fox News, “Obama believes there isn’t a war on terror.”
This, despite the president’s increased use of drones and NSA surveillance,
both of which conservatives didn’t become dubious about until there was a
Democrat in the White House.
radio talk show types consider Obama a secret Muslim and a foreigner, which
causes his hatred of America. This makes him soft on terrorism, despite the
“surge” in Afghanistan, and his belligerence in Pakistan and Yemen. And,
although more al Quaeda leaders and far fewer Americans have been killed during
Obama’s tenure than W’s, he’s not keeping us safe.
Such nonsense aside, why did 9/11 conservatives also abandon the rest of their liberal principles, including values unrelated to 9/11, from the rejection of science (e.g., global warming and evolution) to desegregating church and state? Opposed to fundamentalist Islam, they feel warmth for fundamentalist Christians (as Miller put it, “I dig them”) and share their concerns, including their hostility toward gays and gun control.
in this group irrationally label any criticism of militant Islam as racist,
despite the fact that Islam isn’t a race. This is odd, in that the far Left
has virtually nothing in common with the Islamists, other than a shared dislike
of Christianity, Zionism and American foreign policy. And, on the fringe, plenty
of leftist conspiracy nuts think 9/11 was an inside job carried out by the Bush
CIA, perhaps with the cooperation of the Mossad.
Maybe it’s not conservatism and liberalism that make no sense, it’s extremism at either end of the political spectrum. If 9/11 should have taught us anything, it’s how many of our problems stem from simpleminded fanaticism. Look no further than our own Congress for the confirmation of that.
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