Bless the souls lost on 9/11 and those of our soldiers and allies who have sacrificed their lives to defend the free world.
A related catastrophic casualty has also been suffered by us, though it cannot measure in any way to the loss of innocent lives, and the grief their families feel to this day and likely will for their entire lives.
President Bush's repeated false warnings about security breaches, which were manipulated for his political advantage, each time sidelined our economy. Much deeper though is the psychology of the man himself. He was floundering at the beginning of his tenure so much so that his true self was apparent ― incompetent and shallow.
However, as a result of 9/11, President Bush found an identity he could hold on to and so constructed a persona as a "war president." I believe Mr. Bush was asleep at the wheel on September 11. Anybody with his security clearance would have been aware of al Qaeda. President Clinton personally briefed him during the transition. That summer's NSC memo, "Al Qaeda Determined to Strike," briefed him.
Let's not continue to participate in a cover-up still a year and a half since he left office because we don't want to hurt Mr. Bush's feelings or the prospects of his supporters. Those who lost their lives and those still risking their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan deserve better.
George Bush was asleep at the wheel. Rather than admit this, he overreacted with measures to throw us off the scent of an utterly indefensible vulnerability he had placed the country in. He overcompensated for his lacking similarly to how a bully over-compensates for deep insecurities.
Included in this over-compensation was a deliberate broadening of Al Qaida's impact by emptying our consumer driven economy to rev-up a war economy for his pre-determined invasion of Iraq. Even though the economy showed early signs of bouncing back within weeks of 9/11, instead he kept his foot on the economic brake to hold the nation lurching, then stopping, lurching, then stopping again and again while he staged a personal makeover. He broke our economic engine and it is still in repair in our deep recession now.
We all know Wall Street is controlled by emotions as much if not more than by the underlying economic fundamentals. So too it is the case for our national economy as a whole. To beef up his charade as a "war president," he had to beef up not only the impact of 9/11, but also the future risks. Thus, for nearly eight years he perpetrated an economic sham more cunning than a Bernie Madoff or an Enron.
I intend no minimization of the devastation the 9/11 attacks caused our country and the world, nor the threats that still remain to us. But even his father can't cover up the deliberate manipulation to bring down our economy as a mechanism to lift up George Bush's personal standing.
One lesson in life I have learned is that when you get knocked off your horse, get back in the saddle as soon as you can. The more you linger, the harder it is to finally do the inevitable of getting back on your horse.
It is sensitive though and we must not equate the lives lost and their families' sufferings, with economic suffering. They are on two entirely different scales and of two entirely different mindsets.
9/11 will remain with us in our hearts. How we respond to it now though is our choosing. To start with, let's have the courage to expose the national tragedy of George Bush's malicious attack on our economic well-being. Understanding this is central to understanding our national character, to recovering from the recession, and on which the upcoming elections will largely be based.
With love, respect, and honor to those fallen on 9/11 and its aftermath, many people are hurting badly economically. Relief won't happen over night, but we need to continue to steady ourselves a little more each day. One day at a time.