Today Is Also the 19th Anniversary of the Warbloggers

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Today is the 19th anniversary of the warbloggers. I believe that Charlie Kirk is this year’s recipient of the Steven Den Beste Memorial Blathering Award.

I suppose this makes no sense to most of you. Sorry. It’s sort of an inside joke for those of us who were there at the creation, so to speak. I’ve long wondered whether the warbloggers had any real influence on the events following 9/11, and I suppose I’ll never know. But they were certainly in the vanguard of the true believers who considered anyone opposed to the Iraq war to be an idiot, a traitor, or worse.

It’s a funny thing. I didn’t start blogging until 2002, so I don’t have any written record of what I thought about 9/11. But my memory tells me that I didn’t think it was going to be that big a deal. We’d all be outraged for a while and then we’d mount a smallish war in Afghanistan to catch Osama bin Laden. That’s the usual American way. And once that was done, memories would start to fade.

Needless to say, nothing could have been farther from the truth. American memories stayed red hot and Dick Cheney decided we needed to take out Iraq. And with that, an entire decade was warped out of recognition. Al Qaeda did its part, of course, by mounting deadly bombings every year or so that kept their eventual destruction front and center.

Today, al Qaeda is a dim memory for most people, and terrorism has taken a back seat to Donald Trump and COVID-19. But we still live with the surveillance and security state that 9/11 sparked. It’s just one more thing that makes living in the United States marginally worse than it was 30 years ago. Unfortunately, when you add up lots of marginal things, life really does get less pleasant. Perhaps that’s where we are today.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

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