It looks as if I should say a bit more about yesterday’s anniversary. So:
The fact is that the two years or so after 9/11 were a terrible time in America – a time of political exploitation and intimidation, culminating in the deliberate misleading of the nation into the invasion of Iraq. It’s probably worth pointing out that I’m not saying anything now that I wasn’t saying in real time back then, when Bush had a sky-high approval rating and any criticism was denounced as treason. And there’s nothing I’ve done in my life of which I’m more proud.
It was a time when tough talk was confused with real heroism, when people who made speeches, then feathered their own political or financial nests, were exalted along with – and sometimes above – those who put their lives on the line, both on the evil day and after.
So it was a shameful episode in our nation’s history – and it’s one that I can’t help thinking about whenever we talk about 9/11 itself.
So the country went in a different direction than he would have chosen, some people were mean to the former Enron advisor, and that is his key takeaway from 9/11. Whatever. Hundreds of first responders bravely gave their lives today, citizens rallied on United 93 to save the Capitol, but the main lesson is that Krugman was forced to endure (with Michael Moore) a lucrative role as Angry Lib.
But he did find a brief moment of shining pride:
Now, I should have said that the American people behaved remarkably well in the weeks and months after 9/11: There was very little panic, and much more tolerance than one might have feared. Muslims weren’t lynched, and neither were dissenters, and that was something of which we can all be proud.
No Muslims were lynched - are we a great nation, or what? I share his pride in our fellow citizens.
Now, do you wonder whether 9/11 is the only horribly tainted day on Krugman's calendar? Wonder no more! My ubiquitous secret spies have found his annotated calendar for 2011:
Martin Luther King Day: Our nation shares a collective and eternal guilt for the acts of a nutter gunman.
President's Day: We pretend to honor the President who owned slaves and the President who lacked the courage to free them in the border states.
Memorial Day: Dying in war glorified by the military-industrial complex.
Fourth of July: Ignorant partisans celebrate the founding of a nation stolen from Native Americans and built by slaves.
Labor Day: A once-proud day marred by the collapse of the Soviets.
Columbus Day: Again with the glorification of imperialism and conquest?
Election Day: How many blacks and ethnics will be turned away at the polls today? And why bother showing up, since the Supreme Court willl select the next winners anyway.
Veterans Day: When is "Peace Activists Day"?
Thanksgiving: Only the Mohegan Sun Casino marks the Native Americans victimized by the Pilgrims.
Christmas: We violate the separation of church and state to commemorate the birth of the man whose ideas led to the Spanish Inquisition.
New Years Day: Maybe the new year won't suck as hard. But I bet it does.
It's always cloudy in Princeton.