September 11 Digital Archive






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TomPaine Story: Story

Long, long ago, a million years ago -- before September 11 -- we reached
the ""end of history."" In the mythic struggle between the good guys and
the bad guys -- wouldn't you know it -- the good guys won. American
ideals like human rights were free to spread across the globe like the
sun's rays at dawn. Encouraged by our example and steadied by our solid
economy, rule by law and the free market would replace rule by privilege
and the command economy in Russia and the Third World. Vigilance, tough
diplomacy, and international cooperation could combine to prevent the
type of butchery that occurred in Rwanda.

But that was a million years ago. Since then somebody else's ideals
have crashed into our own and tried to bring them down.

It was devastating. But in the aftermath of that heretofore unthinkable
devastation, some invisible threats began to descend on our nation like
fallout after an atomic bomb, and like fallout, they could be far more
deadly in the long run than the initial attack.

Rule of law threatens to become subordinate to executive despotism. A
person can be held without charges until a stubborn American president
unilaterally decides that a war that was never declared is finally over.

The free market is free only for the privileged insiders, their free
goodies being paid for by the shareholders and stakeholders of the
companies they mismanage.

And instead of working to prevent future Rwandas, our government wants
to have its own blood bath. To save Iraq's citizens from butchery we
are told we must butcher them ourselves.

Instead of the end of history, we may be looking at the end of the
Republic, replaced by an arrogant, go-it-alone Empire.

Let's go back to being the good guys again.


“tp95.xml,” September 11 Digital Archive, accessed March 26, 2023,