Duck! and Gather

The Three Horsemen: 9/11, Katrina, and Cho

Posted on: April 18, 2007

  • In: predictions
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Since January when I started working on my startup, the first and only thing to drag my attention away from that work was the Virginia Tech massacre. It all started for me when I was out running errands Monday afternoon. With her eyes glued to the television set on which she normally watches afternoon soaps, the lady behind the counter at my local Lebanese deli announced that over 30 had been killed. Startled, I said: “What!?! At a university?!” Since that moment, the story has gripped me.

So I decided to put an end to this obsessive attention of mine with two podcasts. Together, they explain why I lump Cho’s actions on Monday with 9/11 and Katrina. One obvious connection is that all three events share the following trait: They treated us to images of American bodies in positions and states that shocked us to our core.

In 9/11, it was the sight of American bodies jumping out of the top story windows of the World Trade Centers. For Katrina, it was pictures of untended bloated American bodies floating down rivers in New Orleans that used to be streets. And on Monday, it was the images of our stripling American youth being carted out of ivory towers in body bags by the dozen.

But I argue there’s even a deeper connection linking these three profoundly disturbing events. I argue that all three are the bastard children of our national lust for petroleum oil — a lust that is 60+ years in the making. Now, while the supporting arguments concerning 9/11 and Katrina are obvious circa 2007, the argument concerning Cho is more subtle.

Here are my two podcasts on this:

  • (127) The Three Horsemen: 9/11, Katrina, and Cho: Background (46:50). How did the Virginia Tech massacre make me feel? NYTimes treatments of the three events. Why these three stand out from previous acts of terror, weather disasters, and mass murders. How oil lust led to 9/11 and Katrina.
  • (128) The Three Horsemen: 9/11, Katrina, and Cho: Why Cho? (50:38) What could our national lust for oil have to do with Cho? Lust for oil => death of community => alienation. Combine this with America’s cultural vaccuum, and we have the most fertile soil for the Chos of the world. (Except maybe for Quebec.)

And now, it’s back to work for me.

for the money has gone too far

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April 2007
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