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September 2012
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Musing on this day

[Note: This post isn’t strictly drug policy, but I posted it elsewhere and thought I would share it with you as well.]

Today is a day I remember extraordinary sacrifice and also remember the truly amazing spirit that existed around the world in those immediate days following the tragedy. There was nothing we couldn’t do to rebuild and regroup, because we had the spirit of America and the entire world supported us. The French newspaper of record, Le Monde, ran a front-page headline reading “Nous sommes tous Américains”, or “We are all Americans.”

I flew to Seattle on the first day that flights were allowed again. We didn’t need no stinkin’ TSA — the elderly couple in bermuda shorts in line ahead of me would have taken on any terrorists who showed up on our plane (and they said so). Nobody on that day was going to let the terrorists defeat our spirit.

9/11, unfortunately, is also a time when I curse the political leaders who, in the years following, turned us into a nation of sniveling cowards, eager to give away essential liberties for imagined security. Political leaders who turned America into a nation that arrests people without charges, without trial, without proper representation, and then leaves them to rot in prison until they die. Political leaders who turned America into a nation that drops bombs on innocent people around the world and imagines that there will be no consequences; who use the tactics of terror in a fight against what will now be a never-ending battle against terror. Political leaders who spy on Americans without judicial oversight and use national security as a means of avoiding accountability, punishing those who shine a light on government abuses while refusing to hold accountable those who tortured in our name. Political leaders who changed America from being a leader in human rights into a hypocritical bully. Political leaders who exploit the insecurities of people, intentionally diminishing the power of America in order to profit from its fears.

It’s time for America to truly remember 9/11 and say “We will not be cowed by the threat of terror, nor will we let our political leaders do the work of terrorists and take away our liberty, our soul, and our pride.”

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35 comments to Musing on this day

  • ezrydn

    It was pre-dawn in San Diego, Calif., on that fateful morning. The phone rang. Odd. I reached for the night stand phone and answered with a groggy “Good Morning.”

    The voice immediately asked, “Is your TV on?” It was Paula, my best friend and retired Navy Cmd Mstr Chief. She continued with a short “We’re under attack,” then the phone went dead.

    I got up, walked into the living room and turned the TV on. Then, I saw it. Moments after turning the TV on, I saw Plane #2 slam into the second tower. Like everyone else, I was glued to the TV.

    Right after the first tower fell, Rosana, my wife, got up and came in to see what I was doing. She found me staring at the TV. She finally asked, “What’s going on?” I said “You see that tower? There should be TWO of them!” Then, the second tower came down.

    We kept watching as I prepared breakfast. We ate and decided to make a run to Starbucks, knowing they’d probably close. We got our coffees as they locked their doors to leave. Not aware that the FAA had activated the “Traffic ZERO” plan, I remember remarking about no aircraft in the sky as we were close to Lindberg Approach. And, no helicopters, either. Nothing but a bird or two.

  • claygooding

    I hooked a loaded trailer in NYC at 10 pm,8,31,2001,,too avoid the next days traffic I drove to the Penn Turnpike and appx halfway to the I-70 exit in western PA and spent the night at one of the many parking areas along the turnpike,,next am,as I was getting off the turnpike the radios,cb and fm,were squalling about the plane striking the first tower,,I proceeded to the first available truckstop and parked,,hooked up my tv to the cable service and the second tower had been hit and they were showing over and over videos of the first strike,,then the first tower went down and I think the Pentagon was hit,either just before or after the first tower went down,,,the flight that went down in western PA hit a field appx 30 miles from where I was parked,,,I do not remember during the entire 3>4 hrs that I was parked feeling fear,,only sorrow and anger,,and I still have only those emotions over terrorism,,sorrowful for any victims of violence and angered that the perpetrator’s of most of these acts claim patriotism or religious fervor as justification of committing violence against innocent people’s that did not cause the harm or policies that the violence was committed over.

    Now add despair,,because of the damage to our society done because of that violence by our politicians when America has the best anti-terrorist protection in the world as long as it’s citizens can own guns,now to convince America that all adults should be armed at all times,,required to wear a sidearm in public,,sure,there would be a flurry of killings right at the start but after the crazies all died in a hail of bullets,,most violent crimes would end and few terrorist would ever consider trying to grab hostages.

    • Windy

      I sort of agree with you, but requiring every American to carry a gun is just as tyrannical as forbidding all Americans to own guns. As long as Americans can voluntarily and legally own guns and other weapons, that is all that is necessary to protect the country, in general, from bad or misled foreign people who have criminal intent against all Americans (terrorists). So far every actual terrorist attempt since 9/11 has been discovered (and therefore prevented) by ordinary citizens, not by TSA (with their abuses of and thefts from passengers, nor their spoiling beverages purchased within the “secure zone” in airports, nor their groping and nude scan machines) not DHS (with its own a buses of the citizenry and its constantly droning helicopters hovering over residential areas for hours at a time at what cost for flying those things? something like a thousand $ per hour, maybe more), not even the FBI (tho they’ve created “terrorists” out of disaffected and slightly deranged individuals which they then busted for the publicity, those dudes were never a danger to anyone before the FBI got involved with them). It’s time for Americans to stand up against these unconstitutional agencies, statutes, rules, and bureaucratic claptrap.

  • kaptinemo

    I am not one to normally beat my own drum, but I wrote some things at another Website both during and immediately after the tragedy. I’ll let the readers decide, given the intervening years, just how effin’ predictable the government response was. You don’t need a crystal ball, just an understanding of Human nature and History.

    And please note that, of all those who warned against what later was to happen, it was the ‘druggies’, the supposed ‘scum of the earth’ who were the first to warn of the dangers of losing civil liberties. After all, we’ve been under the jackboot while others thought themselves free; we knew the truth behind the smiling lie.

    And now we have company. But far too many still think the taste of that jackboot’s leather is something comforting.

    The irony is past bitter…

  • divadab

    Yup – sleepwalking towards Disney fascism. Mickey piloting the drone while Goofy waves a flag to support the troops. Donald Duck is unemployed and under a restraining order from Daisy, who is a prison guard. Huey’s bankrupt with student loans, Dewey’s working at Mickie D’s, and Louie has PTSD from six tours in Iraq and lives in a basement.

    And we get to pay for the whole evil clown show. Fuck.

  • kaptinemo

    Again, History is a cycle, an open book to those who read it…and take its’ lessons to heart. And I’m not the only one who reads it; so did our erstwhile ‘leaders’…and they did what all such do; exactly what was warned about. Again, wholly predictable. And predicted.

    Weep at how easily America was led down the blood-dripping warpath…for all the wrong reasons.

    • primus

      And now, Canada too is sounding the war trumpets. Over Iran… For why?

      • kaptinemo

        Primus, you might want to google the following:

        Harper Versailles France 2003

        then:

        Obama Clinton June 6 2008 Chantilly Virginia

        then:

        Romney June 6 2012 Chantilly Virginia

        “War’s good business”, as the vile old slogan used to say. And these are the top ‘businessmen’ on the planet. Harper is as beholden to them as Obama is, as Lil’ Georgie was, as Klinton was before him, as ‘Poppy’ (what a giveaway) Bush was before him, etc. etc. etc. As will be the next Prez or PM.

        Not pretty when you first run into this, but there it is.

  • Texas tea

    In all fairness we are much safer now.who cares about the lost of freedom your being kept safe from terror.without the TSA we probably would have been attacked again.we need NSA and TSA. i want them at bus stations,train stations,schools,public transportion buses.We as a nation are still under attack. we angered them more after killing osama bin ladin. we shouldn’t have done that at all.they are more pissed off than ever. i mourn the lives lost but i’ll be damned if i cant go outside without fear of a muslim running up to me screaming allah and then blowing himself up killing me in effect. We as nation need to respect the policial courage our leaders did in order for our safety. it would make more sense to get rid of the bill of rights,becouse thats why they hate us. thats what being an american is all about. thank you and praise jesus in america

    • claygooding

      Wear a gun so if his bomb doesn’t work you can still off the basturd.

    • Hilarious, but sad that there are people out there who essentially accept that kind of thinking.

      • darkcycle

        *sigh* Wiggles nails the mindset. I must say, sometimes Wiggler can be pain, but he does bring a certain…uh…perspective…we generally lack.

    • Now I don’t fear anything but my own Government. What an amazing piece of paranoia and fear replacing common sense and the America we once knew.

    • Maria

      Aw man. Some days i wish we could post pictures in these here comment sections.

      Praise Jebus!

      To stay On Topic:
      My 13 year old cousin has no idea what the world was like before 911. To her being intimately patted down at the airport is normal. We totally won against the terrorists.

  • darkcycle

    My wife was in Cincinnati visiting her Dad, and was due to board a plane home that morning. I called there just as they were heading out the door for the airport. They hadn’t seen yet, so I told them stop what they were doing, and turn on the infernal box, that they were going nowhere, and to avoid the airport. They tuned in just in time to see the second airplane hit.
    You didn’t have to be prescient to see what was coming next, and I tried to tell folks but NOBODY wanted to hear it in the weeks and months that followed. But as the weeks turned into years, and the wars and abuses multiplied it became all too obvious. We were taken over on that day. That was a revolution, or a coup, or…a hijacking. Of this entire nation.
    Now it’s just waiting. Waiting for the protests to become more violent, the roundups to start, and the curfews and travel permits to be issued. All the pieces are on the board and have been in play now for quite a while. The fascists haven’t yet moved their knights, they’ve been moving the pawns out of the way. But it’s coming.

  • booboo

    I love america but I love safety more.guns should be illegal.only police should have guns.and when your in public they shouldn’t have to ask to search you or your property.how do we know you don’t have a bomb or drugs in there.the drug war can be won simply by getting rid of that bullshit forth admendent crap. Fuck drug users and fuck atheist.this is the land of jesus. I even believe alcohol and cigarettes and pop should be illegal.and homosexuals are nasty.ima godly american who cares about moral values.marijuana is worse than a murdering rapist.its no wonder childmolesters use it as a tool to harm kids.

    • claygooding

      thanks,,I needed that,,I like it better when you ramble,,hope we aren’t keeping you from masturbating your dog.

    • claygooding

      Strange occurrence yesterday,a friend came over and vaped his first time with me,,,I was not paying attention to how he was hitting it and he was full tilt hitting my non-forced air machine repeatedly,,4 times,,and he hyper-ventilated I think,,sat there for about 10 secs after he handed me the hose and passed smooth out,,rolled out of the chair and landed on the carpet,,scared the shit out of me.

      I reached down and touched his shoulder and he opened his eyes,,said he could hear the tv and me asking him if he was ok but couldn’t remember passing out,,now he is swearing allegiance to joints and pipes only.

      The first time I vaped I got so high I had to hold on to the cabinets to walk to the bathroom but nowhere near passed out. Anyone else notice the intensity of vaporizing and seen similar results?

      • AnonymousThisTime

        This wasn’t in regard to vaping, but merely toking a joint. Some years ago, I think a day or two after I had undergone general anesthesia for some head surgery, I thought I‘d like to mellow out a little, and getting high must have interacted with the residual anesthesia in my system, (or maybe I was also taking some prescribed pain pills), because while I did not lose consciousness, I got up from my chair, lost all virtually all motor control and experienced myself falling (uncontrollably) to the floor in my kitchen. Like your friend I was conscious the entire time, and witnessed the whole thing, but had no motor control for ten or twenty seconds perhaps. Fortunately I did not get hurt, and that was rather surprising actually.
        Many months later I witnessed a nearly identical situation, with someone else who had recently been hospitalized and had anesthesia. She was given a few tokes to help with her pain, and she just sort of ‘went away’ for maybe 30 seconds or so, (although it seemed like an eternity to us at the time). When she ‘came back’, she said that she was aware of all that had been going on, even being amused by our concern and our saying, “are you all right?” repeatedly, a question she did not answer. She did not fall (or get hurt), and I put two and two together.
        It was a very weird experience, and neither experience required much intake at all. Maybe your friend had had some surgery recently?

      • primus

        I noted that effect just this morn; I stepped out onto my deck to enjoy a large roach left over from last night and noticed a certain lack in the effect. I stepped into my kitchen and filled the crucible of my Herbalaire twice. Bake city. Set me up for the day. Best of all? Less coughing.

      • Plant Down Babylon

        When i was young, me n my surf buddies were so poor we used to blow our hits into balloons and re-inhale them.

        Couldn’t be worse then nO2 hits, could it?

    • kaptinemo

      Uh…you are being sardonic, right? As in ‘tongue-in-cheek’?

      • claygooding

        Me and my other buddy have been trying to repeat the incident ever since,,,trying as we type.

        • kaptinemo

          Sorry, Clay, I was addressing the fellow above you. I was trying to determine if his offering was satire. I have the sneaking suspicion it wasn’t, but wanted to confirm it.

  • ezrydn

    After 9/11, all I kept hearing was “Be afraid. Be very afraid,” from the President down. I just got sick of hearing it. So, I packed up, got my documents in order and moved to Mexico. Yeah, Mexico, where I’ve lived since 9/11. Now, being afraid in combat is normal. It keeps you alive. But in the USA, I’m supposed to be afraid? I just had to ask if the letters F.O. had any meaning to anyone.

    And, I see that post 9/11 in the USA has a large fear factor. Not from terrorists, illegal or cartels. No, it’s from the left-over authority figures. It’s no longer the country I put my life on the line for. I like where I am and will probably stay the course here. It’s safer!

    • primus

      I also feel safer in Mexico than in the US. Not that I’m going back to Mexico OR the US in the near future, it’s not safe in either place. I felt safer in Cambodia, Laos and Thailand than in the US.

  • Peter

    Back to 9/11, as Pete says, it’s remarkable how Bush and the gang of Neocons managed to squander the goodwill of the American people and the rest of the world in the months and years following the attacks. 9/11 became a tool for Bush and the gang to impose their own agendas with pet projects like the invasion of Iraq and the elimination of freedoms and rights in the US. Perhaps the most cynical ploy of all was the linking of the “war on terror” with the long running war on some drugs, and the series of ads which appeared in 2002 blaming drug consumers for the 9/11 attacks were especially reprehensible. This was straight out of the playbook of Reich Minister of Propaganda, Dr Goebbels and was a lie on a massive scale. Drug Czar John Walters must be held to account for this.

  • Freeman

    Phenomenal post, Pete. It expresses my thoughts and feelings on the issue so perfectly, hitting every note, like a song heard for the first time that just strikes a chord and says it all.

  • claygooding

    Colorado’s Marijuana Legalization Campaign Goes To Court Over Deleted Text In Ballot Book

    http://tinyurl.com/97lpky6

    “”The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, the pot advocacy group behind Colorado’s marijuana legalization measure Amendment 64, filed a lawsuit in response to the Colorado Legislative Council’s deletion of “Arguments For” Amendment 64 text in Colorado’s voter guide, known as the “blue book.”

    The campaign says that the “Arguments For” Amendment 64 section of of the blue book is now just 208 words following the deletion, whereas the “Arguments Against” section is approximately 366 words — meaning “Against” has nearly 75 percent more words than the “For” section. “The blue book is supposed to be fair and balanced, and it’s safe to say this is quite lopsided and, thus, unfair,” the campaign said in a statement.””

    “I don’t think he was trying to cause confusion,” said Ferrandino, D-Denver. “But it did cause confusion.” ‘snip’

    My bullshit meter is pegged,,confusion and lies is all prohibs have left.

    • kaptinemo

      Seems to me that ‘truth-in-advertising’ laws should apply to public officials, as well. So that you ‘know what you’re getting’ isn’t…defective.

      “At least six of its members didn’t realize what was happening and later voted unsuccessfully to restore the language.”

      Oh, really? They didn’t know what they were doing? Then why are they acting on behalf of a legislative body if they’re that incompetent? This is monkeying around with the foundation of government (and therefore, society), here.

      As Mencken put it: “The only good bureaucrat is one with a pistol at his head. Put it in his hand and it’s good-bye to the Bill of Rights.”

      The ‘pistol’ doesn’t have to be made of steel, just a sneakily inserted parliamentary rule or two, or an uncounted vote, but the effect is the same.

      Keep doing that, and there’s no reason to keep playing a rigged game, anymore. And with lots of angry citizens with real guns in this country, whose faith in its’ purported fairness is at an all-time low, that’s not a wise move.

  • claygooding

    My pooter turned into a paperweight last night,,now I am trying to access my old email account with no luck to change my passwords on all my sites on my sisters machine,,,what way to start the day.