On the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and after some personal reflection here are a couple of lessons I take from the attacks in the wake of the last six years.
Osama Bin Laden is a strategic genius. He was forward-thinking enough to realize that it was the perfect time to attack the United States. Our boy-president had just come into office surrounding himself with fellow deep-thinkers who could easily be counted on to go off the deep end and overreact accordingly. With Bush in office Bin Laden was assured that the United States was weak. He couldn't have been more correct in that assumption.
We will always be at war. One thing that leaps out and depresses the hell out of me is that there's a significant enough portion of powerful people who are so vastly intellectually immature that they simply can't define themselves outside of their violent opposition to some other ideology on the world stage, even if that ideology is in reality impotent. How else could one explain the almost effortless Neocon segue from "Oh my God the Ruskies are going to get us!" to "Oh my God the Islamofascists are going to get us!"
If pisses me off that these people continue to set an agenda in terms of resources and focus towards conflict when the vast majority of the world's population simply wants to go along to get along.
There is no longer an objective reality. Demonstrated most recently by the Petraeus testimony yesterday. All of those things that humans survive on a micro scale; the ability to learn from one's mistakes, objective reasoning, etc. are also a necessity on the macro scale that the entire society may survive. These things are missing and we are all suffering for it. Not to mention it drives the most rational of us absolutely bonkers.
Politicians don't really love this country. Their collective inability to defend our constitution in the wake of the attacks breaks my heart. I had always assumed that, regardless of our political leaders use of their elective office for personal aggrandizement, they had at least originally decided to serve and run for office based on a deep sense of patriotism. When push came to shove they would remember that original reason for service and act accordingly.
I was wrong.