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It’s been almost twenty-one years since the 9/11 attacks. In fact, the attacks are now closer to Ronald Reagan’s inauguration than they are to today.
But the deadliest terror attack continues to fascinate people today. For most people alive today, 9/11 was the single most shocking day of their lives. It was also probably the most important. It changed America dramatically, and not in a good way. Thanks to 9/11, we got the War on Terror. We spent billions of dollars and thousands of lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, in return for nothing, not to mention half a dozen smaller interventions all around the world. The early 2000s were supposed to be the time that America could finally take a step back from being a global hegemon, and focus on our own people and our own problems. Instead, we tried to play world police. It made us worse off and it made the world worse off too.
Thanks to 9/11, we still live with ridiculous security theater in every part of our lives. We have to take off our shoes to get on airplanes, and we have to let TSA agents grope us at will. None of this prevents future attacks, or really does anything at all. It’s just theater. But we waste billions of dollars a year on it.
Thanks to 9/11, we passed the Patriot Act and handed the FBI, NSA, and CIA dramatically expanded power to spy on us, in the name of “safety.”
Ever since 9/11, America as a society has become less free and more controlled. We’ve become more indebted and more terrified. We’ve become more obese, more addicted, and more mentally ill. But if you’re at the very top of America, you’ve gotten rich, and things are arguably better than ever.
With all those changes, it’s no surprise that a lot of people have wondered if there is more to the story about 9/11. People have come up with dozens of overlapping, sometimes contradictory theories about the Pentagon, about United Flight 93, about Building 7, about whether our intel agencies or foreign countries had foreknowledge, and of course about the destruction of the twin towers themselves. Ryan Dawson is one of those 9/11 truthers and he joins us now..
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