From the “What the Hell?” File
Apparently 36% of Americans now believe our government was involved in 9/11. However, I think a cogent point about this greater-than-average tinfoil brigade comes out in the article:
University of Florida law professor Mark Fenster, author of the book “Conspiracy Theories: Secrecy and Power in American Culture,” said the poll’s findings reflect public anger at the unpopular Iraq war, realization that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction and growing doubts of the veracity of the Bush administration.
“What has amazed me is not that there are conspiracy theories, but that they didn’t seem to be getting any purchase among the American public until the last year or so,” Fenster said. “Although the Iraq war was not directly related to the 9/11 attacks, people are now looking back at 9/11 with much more skepticism than they used to.”
In other words, people are now distrustful enough about the reasons we went to war in Iraq that their suspicion and paranoia is spilling over backward into 9/11. Swell.
I’m comfortably within the 64% of Americans who do not believe our government thought it would be sneaky and let a bunch of Osama’s boys give us an excuse to pound on Saddam. I strongly suspect our government could have done more to prevent the attacks, but “could have done more to prevent attacks” exists in an far different mindspace than “actively encouraged the attacks.” I also don’t suspect it’s useful to have one person out of three think the government was involved in 9/11; all that conspiracy crap keeps people occupied with trivia as opposed to looking at actual problems.
So if you’re one of the 36%, please pull your head out of your ass and try to focus on some of our nation’s genuine problems. I realize it’s nice to have an X-Files moment with dark plots and shady government conspiracies that go all the way to the top, but back here in the real world, you’ll be more useful if you take a step back from that particular ledge. I’m just saying.