8 Line Poem Deconstructs 9/11

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“During the September 11 attacks in 2001, 2,977 people were killed, 19 hijackers committed murder–suicide, and more than 6,000 others were injured. The immediate deaths included 265 on the four planes (including the terrorists), 2,606 in the World Trade Center and in the surrounding area, and 125 at the Pentagon.”

Google Search • Saturday, September 11, 2021

On this 20th Anniversary of 9/11, every one of us needs to take a few moments to pay our respects to the nearly 3,000 innocent victims and their surviving families and friends; imagine the stunned horror of the 246 terrorized airline passengers / flight crews, who wound up earning their “wings”; once the wings of all four commandeered aircraft were no longer of any earthly use to anyone. We must also ensure that all who had dwelt and labored within the vicinity of each ground zero’s toxicity receive, at no cost to them, the best health care available; throughout their remaining time on Earth.

The worst tragedy of all, here, is how American Intel had amply forewarned then prez George W. Bush. As everything had all eventually panned out, he’d been afforded the luxury of five weeks advanced notice, in which time he could’ve done his very best to ground Osama bin Laden’s hijackers. Alas, “very best” rarely, if ever can truthfully describe Dubya’s demeanor.

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Dubya’s silver spoon birthright; was defect inborn!
As a lifelong empty suit, no glad rags could adorn!
Both raw power / prestige, were his form of porn!
Ergo, he flipped off his duties, in the oath he had sworn!

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When august alerts flashed; he dared red lights with scorn!
No anti-hijacking tactics! No plot thwarting thorn!
No alerts to the masses! No loud honking horn!
He gave Bin Laden the green light, on That Tuesday morn!

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Stay Publicly / Properly Masked!
Stay Safe at Home!
Stay Healthy!

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Embattled Mixed Emotions

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As a pacifist, I concur with President Joe Biden’s decision to finally end George W. Bush’s ill-conceived War in Afghanistan; the projected exit date to fall on September 11, 2021; the 20th Anniversary of the NYC / DC / PA al-Qaeda attacks.

As a pragmatist, I know there’s little for the world to gain by America soldiering onward, endlessly, in that one specific war zone; especially considering how terrorism, by its very nature, knows no geopolitical boundaries; when new, terrorist training camps proliferate not unlike metastatic cancer cells; when any attempts at shutting them down is not unlike playing a bloody, deadly game of Whac-a-Mole.

As an ethicist, I also need to factor in the Pottery Barn, “You Break It, You Own It Rule”. Obviously, since W did his damnedest to break Afghanistan, unfortunately, that means that each of his presidential successors, have inherited the carnage. And, as such, there’s a moral and financial obligation to clean up all that W had mucked up.

The rub here is that when it comes down to any Wars on Terror, there are no easy exit strategies; as the reality of W’s nearly two decades long AND Russia’s one decade long no-win battles can both certainly attest to.

The problem began when brain dead W, in his futile attempt to “smoke out” Osama bin Laden, had resorted to boots on the ground overkill when, truth be told, a more refined, cogent approach would’ve sufficed; e.g. President Barack Obama’s deployment of the “United States Navy SEALs of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group (also known as DEVGRU or SEAL Team Six)” (quoted content copied / pasted from Google search).

Of course, that’s not to say there have been no gains within Afghanistan, in particular, we must consider the modest improvements re human rights; more specifically, women’s rights.

As an altruist, the very thought of the Taliban (or any other barbaric, moronic, misogynistic régime), muscling its way back into that embattled region is repugnant to me.

As a realist, I know that U.S. troops have been fighting no-win battles. So, how the hell could it ever be any different for the Afghani forces who will soon be left to fend for themselves?

As a kinda / sorta journalist, I find it absolutely unsettling to end a blog with a question, especially one that neither I nor anyone else can honestly answer in a hopeful manner. Long sigh.

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Stay Publicly / Properly Masked!
Stay Safe at Home!
Stay Healthy!

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Grim Truths re 9/11 & COVID-19

George W. Bush and Donald J. Trump, two of America’s worst presidents, ever, have much in common. Both…

• wanted the presidency’s title and power but not the responsibilities
• flipped off their advisors’ admonitions and PDBs¹ re a looming crisis
• pissed away valuable lead time / got caught with their knickers down
• caused far too many innocent people to needlessly suffer and perish
• morphed from candy-asses into (make-believe) combative badasses
• orchestrated unconstitutional power grabs to firm up flaccid images
• were rewarded with 2nd terms due to duped and ill-informed voters²

GWB’s deaths involved 9/11 and two utterly needless, endless, no-win wars.
DJT’s deaths (physical / fiscal) involve his ongoing, DIY COVID-19 pandemic.

19 years ago, on this very day, the 9/11 attacks’ official death toll was 2,977
Since 02/06/20, COVID-19’s reported stateside deaths (SO FAR) = 196,328

196,328 ÷ 2,977 = 66
218 ÷ 66 = 3.3

What do those computations mean?

• Those 196,328 deaths are equivalent to 66 9/11’s
• In the 218 days since 02/06/20, that’s one 9/11 every 3 days and 8 hours.

Back on 9/11/2001, re al Qaeda, my homeland’s mood was indignation.
Yet, on 9/11/2020, re COVID-19, the mood seems more like indifference.

 

Stay Safe at Home! Stay Publicly Masked! Stay Healthy!

 

¹Presidential Daily Briefing
²Sorry to say, we’re stuck with Dumb Donald for up to
another 25 years and… after that… Dumb Donald Jr.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deal or No Deal?

 

CAVEAT: The following post employs conjecture to build upon a recent, factual, international incident. The disturbing quotation, below, was never, actually, uttered by anyone… and hopefully never will be.

When it comes down to foreign relations, Donald Trump’s negotiating tactics have always been more about feathering his own nest, rather than working towards making our world a better place for everyone to live in.

Hmm… that doth raise the question…

What sort of peace treaty will Donny be hammering out with the Taliban’s negotiator Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai?

Naturally, Stanikzai knows all about Trump’s obsession with digging up dirt on Joe Biden (and Sonny) and how… via that now infamous, corrupt quid pro quo / “Perfect Phone Call”… the ne’er-do-well, fake prez had attempted to coerce Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky into doing his dirty work for him.

Hmm… that doth raise a followup question…

WHAT IF, during the Trump / Taliban talks, Stanikzai proposes his own, self-serving, quid pro quo? Check this out…

Mr. Trump, I’ve got dirt on Joe Biden and the other major Democratic POTUS wannabes. All of this intel can be yours but… I would like you to do us a favor though. We demand [1] All American and allied troops must leave Afghanistan within three months (never to return), [2] $10 Billion in U.S. aid, annually, for the next 30 years, [3] 75 percent of your nuclear warheads and [4] Zero criticism over the brutal human rights violations we fully intend to inflict on the Afghani.

Hmm… that doth seem to raise (at least) one more question…

Would Trump sell out Afghanistan and America… indeed… the entire free world… just to reinstall his mangy carcass in the Oval Office for another 4 to 28 years?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cohen’s Counterpoint (Vid of the Day)

The manner in which wealth gets portrayed / prioritized is what oft gives prosperity its bad name.

While viewing the first minute of today’s clip… the Trumpian portion… consider the greed-driven commander-in-chief’s barren of meaningful thanks, Thanksgiving message to his troops (stationed at Afhanistan’s Bagram Airfield-BAF).

Those in his captive audience, who had been totally zoning out on his self-serving, soon-to-be 2020 TV campaign ad, had had the right idea.

However, just imagine how demoralized the soldiers, who had actually been paying attention, must’ve felt upon discovering how they’ve been putting their lives on the line ONLY for the sole, soulless purpose of fattening stock market portfolios… rather than preserving, protecting and defending American freedom.

Following Trump’s words we’ll be giving a listen to Brian Tyler Cohen’s spot on, well documented political / psychoanalysis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

It Sounded Like a Battlefield!

 

It all began a few eves ago around sundown. As the glow along the hazy, northwesterly horizon dimmed and the deep purple hues of twilight gave way to the inky darkness, folks from near and far, came roaring into my lifelong hometown. With them came the pervasive, sickly stench of vehicular exhaust… sufficiently pungent to make the already unpleasant, sweltering, muggy conditions even more so.

Once their countless vehicles were all neatly parallel parked up and down the labyrinth of my subdivision’s asphalt streets, the drivers and passengers began emerging and slamming car doors shut. With a sense of urgency, they began marching forth to converge upon… to noisily congregate at… what was about to become ground zero.

My residing in the direct path of the expected onslaught, I needed to figure out my next move, expeditiously. Either staying far from the madding crowd or?

Well… after a moment of deliberation, I surrendered to the inevitable. I’d make my stand on my side of the chainlink fence, which cordoned off my backyard… which separated me from my countless compatriots standing on the opposite side.

The final moments leading up to the expected Zero Hour just kept on ticking down… rapidly.

Then… all the sudden… the barrage began! Even though I had been through a similar siege back in the fall of ‘16, nonetheless, this startled me, anew. Then came the launch of the subsequent missiles and projectiles… numbering in the hundreds… their smoky, streaky, chemical contrails scarring the starlit skies… contaminating the sweet air. This could not possibly be harmless to any of our Creator’s creatures. As for the accompanying, relentless, thunderous explosions and whizzing, whistling din… well… long sigh…

For the vast majority of us, taking all of this in stride was doable. BUT, could the same be said for the sensitive souls, who experience life from differing perspectives? They’d likely be hunkering down within their nearby homes, YET, still be within earshot. Folks such as…

America’s valiant war veterans haunted by horrifying flashbacks… the disturbing sights, smells and sounds associated with their tours of duty upon the battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq. Civilians trying their very best to cope with autism would not be exempt, either. Ditto goes for the crying children and infants too young and frightened to ever fully comprehend.

Even household felines and canines as well as other domesticated and feral creatures could wind up getting spooked.

OK folks, full disclosure time. All the news isn’t bad, after all. You see, nobody had actually declared war and attacked my hometown. What you’ve just been reading is my account of a 4th of July fireworks show.

So, does my fact based, fictional treatment of this topic make me out to be a grumpy old man who sucks the joy of life out of everything? Is it unpatriotic for me to “malign” a “harmless” fireworks show?

BUT, what about how the BOOM BOOM BOOM of fireworks needlessly terrifies some folks? Wouldn’t you say that sucks the joy out of their lives? There’s nothing harmless about that! If fireworks explosions upset even one person in any way, that would be one person too many! And what if that one person turned out to be a war veteran?

I mean… is it not bad enough for any nation to deploy selfless soldiers into war zones? Must we also force war survivors (now suffering from PTSD), to relive the hell of war just so some selfish civilians, who romanticize war, can experience the “ooh and ahh” of a fireworks display?

And btw… there weren’t all that many fireworks attendees who did go, “ooh and ahh”… in fact I actually witnessed some of them leaving that 20 minute show long before it ended.

I could go on, but I think I’ve made my point. About all that’s left is the epilogue to my story… and believe me… once the nasty dust of the fireworks settled… things did not go smoothly.

It took a couple of hours for the local cops to clear the massive traffic jam. And included in their traffic management was the need to report to the scene of a nearby head-on collision, which resulted in the head injury of one of the victims.

Indeed, the wailing ambulance siren added a few more decibels to the sounds of idling and idled SUVs. And it’s tough to go “nose-blind” when the pervasive, sickly stench of vehicular exhaust is sufficiently pungent to make the already unpleasant, sweltering, muggy conditions even more so.

I would hope that people would concur with my conclusion… namely… that fireworks displays have little to offer. They glorify war, give folks a shallow sense of patriotism, pollute our environment and… last but not least… needlessly disturb the peace of mind of war veterans, autistic folks, youngsters / infants, house pets and wildlife.