After several days of distractions and reorganization here at DHAIP, we returned to our blog with fresh eyes, and experienced a certain sense of bemused puzzlement over our last post, which seemed oddly random in focus, out of nowhere you might even say. Ever on the alert for subconscious tremblings from within, we immediately plunged into self-analysis.
Strange, you may say? Yes, but it's the way we work. If we have a motto here at DHAIP -- we don't but we're suggesting that you pretend -- then that motto would declare: "Trust your subconscious. It always knows when something's wrong."
Why, in other words, did we bring up a six-year-old, barely substantiated minor news item that has significance only to what are generally considered the "fringe element" of conspiracy theorists?
Put simply the story, on some level, bothered us. Before our patient readers begin snorting and scoffing, let us point out that we do not necessarily suggest that anything happened on September 11, 2001 beyond what the "official story" (as it is derogatorily known among the theorists) has to tell us. But for whatever reason we find ourselves, over and over again, drawn to those nagging details, oh you know them all by now, as familiar as the blurred figures in the Zapruder film: the slow response of the air defense, the molten steel, the pancake collapses, the Building 7 conundrum, the strangely uninformative Pentagon security cameras and the oddly small hole, etc, so forth -- you've heard them all. They even made it onto South Park
But why? It is certainly not difficult to believe that fanatical and determined terrorists should wish to carry out such an act, nor is it difficult to believe that through a combination of luck on their part and poor leadership on ours, that they should by some fluke succeed. And yet, within the body politic, there are a great many people, many of whom seem quite sane, readier to accept a stranger idea: that someone else should wish to perpetrate such a bizarre crime, and then to blame it on the terrorists as justification for Lord-knows-what. The Reichstag fire, as it were.
Now given that 60% of Americans, according to certain polls, believe that the world was created by God less than ten thousand years ago, along with humans in their present form, and that Darwin was just high or something, this fact may not seem very telling. Yet those Biblical beliefs are the stubborn holdover of hundreds of years, millenia even, of religious dogma; they have roots, deep ones. There is no comparable tradition to explain our mass willingness to embrace conspiracy theory -- except that, with atrocities of the scale of the Holocaust still in our visual memory, our cynicism about ourselves as a species is perhaps at an all time high, or low, as you wish.
Hence we have drawn up a list of possible answers to the question of why doubting 9/11 has become so fashionable:
1. Guilt. The sad fact is that our nation has committed some grievous crimes during its relatively short life, generally in the name of freedom and democracy. As part of our past diplomatic chess games, the Cold War most notably, we have supported monsters, overthrown lawful governments, seized the territory of others without recompense, bombed the helpless, and even, despite our recent rhetoric, funded and encouraged a great many terrorists. Like Dorian Gray, we have striven despite these crimes, to see always in the mirror the fresh-faced goodness of our youth. But soul-sickness and hypocrisy catches up, always, and with the arrival of George W. Bush the illusion has rotted too hollow to be maintained. Thus, like a Dostoevsky character, we fantasize our own complicity in our ills, as a form of psychological penance.
2. Boredom. Modern life is boring, let us confess it. Our market-governed media, with all the star-studded entertainment it provides, cannot begin to fill the void of lives that are doomed to be unfulfilled. There is nothing satisfying or fulfilling about working for the corporations most of us work for, by set laws and according to approved paths, except as a sort of game, futile in the extreme, to see how ably we can provide for our retirement and family.
Then comes death. A billion books entitled Who Moved My Cheese
or Your Path to Effectiveness
cannot make such a way of life a matter of intrigue or fascination. The flashiest software cannot disguise the dullness of its function. No video game can provide a thrill great enough to compensate for the emptiness that descends when the game has done. Thus a tragedy in "real life" becomes an object of morbid curiosity, a scab that can be picked at and dwelt on and worried about endlessly. One version is not enough to work with. There must be multiples.
3. Wish-fulfillment. We have always believed that most Americans secretly long for great destruction and worldwide disaster, for both the reasons listed above. Thus they enjoy planning it out in their heads, and see no reason why those with the power to act on their fantasies would not do so.
4. A sense of mass unreality. We're working on this one. It has something to do with the success of the Matrix
films, World of Warcraft
addiction, and fear of death. We'll present it when it's polished, but you can probably divine the gist.
5. A genuine anomaly. This would mean that something is in fact wrong with the "official story," something which we have all subconsciously sensed but have not as yet put our fingers on. The many and various theories that have evolved, even the most insane and complicated ones, are therefore distorted reflections of some dark, complex truth. Perhaps by studying them we could thus arrive at a realistic shape.
Let us then be truthful. We at DHAIP, after taking an internal poll, will here make a small confession. To our immense surprise, seventy-five percent of us believe that the United States government, and possibly other governments as well, had some
prior knowledge of what was to happen. Whether such knowledge was enough to prevent anything, we do not know. In addition:
Thirty percent think that there was specific knowledge not acted upon. Eighteen percent feel that the inaction was deliberate. Six percent believe that there was some sort of active American participation in the attack. And two percent blame Kevin Federline.
Despite all this, we remain committed to neutrality on the topic, and having expressed our private idiosyncracies, we will put them aside, and now return to our regularly scheduled programming.
We apologize for the length of this post, but we felt the need to clear the air -- how fresh it seems now!