An awesome day to contemplate, though to tell the truth, I didn’t think about it much until tonight. My little sister, Janet, woke me up with a phone call and said, “Turn on your TV, now.” I tuned in just in time to watch the second tower hit and remained glued to the tube the rest of the day. It was Kennedy, Martin Luther King, and a few other national disasters all over again, with the same, mind killing lack of information, perspective and grasp heaped in vast quantities over my captured attention riveted to the tube — which I no longer watch.

The attack was overwhelming in it’s completeness and savagery, sophistication and sheer genius. My country, the biggest and bestest, was totally unprepared, reacted poorly, and lurched into the unknown future without leadership or accountability. Eighteen years later, I don’t feel one bit safer or better prepared to cope with the world’s dangers than I did on 9/12/01. It’s worse, if anything.

The leadership was bad then and it’s worse now. The conditions on the planet are far worse than they were then: climate, population, wealth mis-distribution, health, failing education, and a never ending list of ‘things’ that can’t be done because of our mismanaged money and human capital.

I’m older and more cynical, to be sure, but I don’t think I’m wrong in my assessment of where we are today. The very wealthy still own and run everything — from China to Luxembourg — for their own selfish and greedy desires — and have even more of it than 2001. There are nearly a billion more people to feed. The oceans and atmosphere are dying from man-made pollution. There is no cohesive movement on the planet that can physically address any of it. Violence — individual more than collective — is increasing daily with no hope of diminishing. Stability of any sort is ever less probable in any part of our daily lives.

As Pogo said to Porkypine,