Thoughts on a Post Bin Laden World
So by and large, colonial America was a pretty fun place to be , if you had any sense of ethic, and if you were self sufficient. Religion was very light hearted, and very much a part of life - the bible was by and large the only real book the family kept. A minister, walking down the street, would ask of a couple. "John Smith, do you persist in taking this young lady, Elizabeth Child, to be your own" and he might answer yes. And so, he would ask the same of his companion, and if she answered yes. Then the minister would say "Then, by rights vested in me, I pronounce thee man and wife". And just like that you were married. If someone harmed you, and you had good cause. Kill him. In court, if you could make a compelling case, the judge would likely nod his head, and you would go free.
This was all before the modern era. Somehow, and especially after world war two, we became ... plastic. It would have happened alot faster if there were no hippies. But it happened nonetheless. Fake money, fake breasts. Fake diplomas. It all ended up , somehow, in the mid-eighties - to come to a head under the indictments of Milliken, et.al. - and the october crash. Cellphones came on the scene, and before you know it the traders were all using a device called a blackberry - to trade instantly. The mass public caught on to it and now our culture consists largely of people staring you in the eye, and talking on their phone. You think they're talking to you, but they give you a blank look and stare right through you.
So it was pretty natural for Newt Gingrich and his clan to wave a banner of libertarianism and attack the target that he, and ATR, were paid to attack. Make no mistake, the speaker of the house was listening to the lobbyists. This was a situation in which the entire world , received a message loud and clear that American democracy had become a dog and pony show. And the control of American institutions by Corporations had reached unprecedented levels. We, as taxpayers, spent 20 million dollars to find out that our president likes oral sex. Just as in 2010, when they spent 4 billion dollars to find out that Americans aren't into gridlock.
While all of this was going on, the effect on the staid, and tied down world of Arabia - was extremely negative. The actions of Gingrich, et.al., brought on a justification for a wave of attacks that - far across the sea - were inspired by a group of people who wanted to create a theocracy. Al Qaeda. This enemy finally succeeded in launching a full scale attack on our country, with the full intent of destroying our economy and military industrial capability. They did so, because we had a weak defense. But also because they wanted to destroy us - our good will - our ability to accept others.
And we banded together. All of us. But only for so long. Soon, those in our country who wanted a theocracy themselves - started to label everyone around them as "the other" . News media entertainment fueled a cycle of silliness. They broadcast two talking heads, arguing about a fact -and this became the core of perception for those who stood for "wholesome values". And all the while, the kids dropped to 40th standing in the world, these so called conservatives ended up spending more money than any other administration had past or since.
And so, naturally the country split. On one side, were the people who saw America as a beacon of democracy and acceptance. They weren't waving flags or listening to news media entertainment. They were just trying to piece together a reasonable and humane response to a crisis. And on the other, were people who basically judged everyone in America and found them wanting - and decided we needed to be a country based on moral, religious principle.
Meanwhile, the enemy - who also believed in moral, religious principles - took off and went into hiding. Readying their next attack. And all the while laughing at us. This went on for years while our country engaged in wars of convenience. And somewhere, in the back of our mind, we knew they were laughing at us.
Those whose focus was to re-establish America as a beacon of democracy - solidly won election in 2008, and then quickly embarked upon a campaign of change. This included a changed military strategy. Where the previous administration focussed on wars of convenience, the new administration focussed specifically on hitting our enemy.
A week ago, our enemy was killed.
The enemy never thought it would happen. But it did. And now , once again, the world has changed. I think primarily- those in America , that had thought they held the moral high ground. Have had to re-assess their outlook. They've learned that religious intolerance doesn't sit well with us. And they've perhaps looked upon the face of our enemy and seen far too much of themselves.
So what happens now? Well. It's simple. Now we go outside. And we see the sun. And smell the clean air. That guy down the street, who was waving his flag over the campaign sign, now really sees , perhaps for the first time - the guy who's waving his flag , without a campaign sign anywhere:. A guy who's waving a flag ,because being American is about really being yourself. About being the best you can be. We're not the worlds military cop. We're a country that seeks to find a place in the future. A place of freedom. It took an American leader, with the ability to get the job done, to bring us to gether.
And now that we're together, who can divide us?