The lessons of history? Who needs them? Certainly not Washington's present cast of characters, a crew in flight from history, the past, or knowledge of more or less any sort.
The most important lesson Americans must learn, and never, ever forget from this “Nightmare Presidency”, is that you must never again support a political party that has given this much power to a single human being.
Our nation has been threatened with Nuclear Annihilation by this one human.
If you do not value your life, think of your kids, and realize that voting for either of the two ruling parties will insure you live a life time of Fear and constant Hate, Death and Human Suffering.
It must not remain this way.
We must all change it with the power we possess altogether.
A thoughtful and thorough analysis as always, Tom. Maybe if we entered Iraq not expecting to be met with flowers but rather by bearing flowers, the world would be a much better place.
Thoughtful piece, but something to consider: While the stated PNAC goals weren’t precisely met, the underlying goals have been met perfectly.
Corporate power grew, wages stagnated, all as the number one priority of US foreign policy, now and forever, was achieved: Destabilizing an entire region and filling the power vacuum with weak leaders. In Afghanistan and Iraq, that mission has indeed been accomplished and our troops/mercenaries/advisors are stationed there on an open-ended assignment. Next stop, Syria? Iran? Yemen? We’ll see if Russia and China don’t enjoy how thin we’re spreading ourselves…power vacuums aren’t a one-way street.
Either we stand up and change things or the US follows the path of decline defined by the rise and fall of empires throughout history. We have been given, by the power of our constitution, the ability to change things if only we will.
In the above picture with Bush the lessor, under the banner: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED, the caption should read: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED FOR THE WAR PROFITEERS!
This has become tiring Tom, yet another story involving 9/11, without the truth as to who committed this disgusting act. I don’t believe you are that ignorant, so the question remains, why ? Who’s agenda are you pushing ? Do you not realize it negates the otherwise good writing you do ? Until you come to terms with our true history about 9/11, please stop writing about it. Repeating lies, are still lies.
Well said Tom. I posit that 9-11 was a false flag incident, planned to start the whole American as Supreme leader of the world thing.
Power corrupts, and for sure we have seen the effects of that as portrayed throughout history, i.e., Rome. So the U.S. power mongers want to try once again to reincarnate the Roman Empire. Well, how has that been working out?
In the meantime, the biggest problem the entire planet faces is climate change. We could have put our resources into creating a better, safer world for our descendants, but no–power mongers won once again.
Will we ever learn?
Don’t forget: the constitution has been relegated to that “damned piece of paper”.
Yes, we have the ability to change things, sbrownn, but there is only one way to do it: COME TOGETHER en mass! Nice to see that is happening by millions of patriots storming the capitol today! Oh, wait…
We gotta win the War on Islam.
Even if it means sacrificing Christians in the middle east.
The Owners are far more interested in their armaments (and related) profits than they are in eliminating Al-Qaeda. Perversely and “patriotically,” Al-Qaeda is a blessing to them.
So the essential, more encompassing, arguably much more important set of points that Tom makes in his article are somehow less important than your ongoing sense of outrage over his not subscribing to your particular 9/11conspiracy views? Got it (while smacking my forehead in disbelief).
Oh, and btw, you have absolutely no business telling this principled and experienced thinker and writer what he should or shouldn’t be reflecting upon, let alone writing. The paucity and relevance of YOUR ideas is evident for all here to see; juvenile shrieking about lies seems to be what you’re actually about. Prove me wrong.
Thisessay started out well but petered out at the end. The idea of going back to some idealized post WWII vision of America belongs to the old and the ignorant…21st century youth don’t want it and are looking elsewhere. That’s probably the good thing about all this–the human life span is at most 75-80 years and those old farts with their delusions will die off. Hopefully they won’t have killed off the rest of humanity before then.
Reading that article gave me the uneasy feeling that we are in a version of the Star Wars universe With Dear Leader Trump in the role of Palpatine -maybe with Pompeo and Bolton doing a job-share for Vader? Their vision of overwhelming military might to terrorize the planet is a real life Death Star in the making
Your comment and the ‘Lesson one’ by Tom Engelhardt touch about some notions that must have been pondered throughout history. Engelhardt’s contention that no one source can control the planet can be generalized to not only collective societies but individual societies as well. Along with your sense that a human lifetime has inherent effects on how cultural and social realities are created and maintained or attenuated and fade out. These ideas and concepts along with others have a confluence, an interrelation that over time are the rue ‘rulers’ and change makers in societies. The time scales and the tick-tick of time’s passage that these changes occur are not all that compatible with how we individually sense time and change. It can be near impossible to tell when changes start or when they stop, if they even stop at all.
Power sources exploit and control but don’t completely ‘rule’ since that would consume more than what they have and it’s not what drives them in the first place which is to cash in on their privileges. What does happen is the combined input of various influences. How collective movements start and impact societies is not quite something we can wrap our hands around. One might call it a collective understanding or a collective intelligence but that would be a metaphor. They happen in ways that we can’t truly get a handle on, certainly not at the time it’s occurring, although it can be viewed in retrospect, trying to connect the dots. Stating history is a static exercise, it’s the what and how of things. Trying to understand history is the why questions. It means trying to get a grasp on the dynamics of social evolution, something we don’t necessarily recognize even when we’re surrounded within it.
Hopefully social evolution will have the wisdom to eradicate injustices and flawed concepts such as capital representing human worth and other such cultisms.
That was an elegant way of expressing the concept, thanks. A pleasure to read.
I wonder whether he can. Maye that’s what he has to leave comments for. It used to be said in publications outside the country, but I don’t see it even in foreign countries’ media anymore.
Maybe you should read Tom’s bio at the end of the article, some pretty important subjects. I find it amazing that anyone could take any of this information as truth in reporting when he continually misrepresents the FACTS surrounding 9/11. He has the uncanny ability to weave truths with fiction, the CIA has people who are very good at this as well. This art is used to sell the fiction as the truth. Maybe the truth escapes you or you just don’t care, don’t know and don’t care about you’re reasons. I do care, especially about such an important subject. He does this regularly with this subject, and yes it does make me very suspicious of his intentions. I will call out any writer that does this, whether it offends you or not.
I have every right to express my feelings about the subject matter presented in articles on this discussion page. You don’t have to like my views, that’s you’re right, but don’t ever tell me what my views can or can not be again. I don’t have to prove anything to you, and how presumptuous of you to think you know what I’m about. Since my views upset you, I suggest you don’t read them.
I think a most effective action would be a narioal strike.