SFWRITER.COM > Nonfiction > What if 9/11 Never Happened?
What if 9/11 Never Happened?
by Robert J. Sawyer
Written for Rosie Dimanno at the Toronto Star, September 1, 2006
Copyright © 2006 by Robert J. Sawyer
All Rights Reserved.
The world would be a hugely different place if 9/11 hadn't
occurred. There's little chance George Bush would have been
re-elected he went from being the guy who stole the presidency
by chicanery to being a commander-in-chief who had to be blindly
obeyed thanks to 9/11.
Without 9/11, Bush would have simply bumbled through the rest of
his first and only term, and the US voters would have turfed him
out at the first opportunity, which would have been the 2004
elections; by now, he'd be a quaint, embarrassing memory
another Gerald Ford, an ineffectual guy who ended up in the Oval
Office in ways no one quite understood (What's that? We don't
actually have to elect the president? Say what? We're going to
stop counting the ballots?), and was quietly shown the door as
quickly as possible.
But because of 9/11, we got Homeland Security and the loss of
civil liberties, the ill-conceived war in Iraq, the resulting
devastation of the US dollar on world markets,
three-dollar-a-gallon gasoline, ineffectual airport security
measures, and the curtailing of stem-cell research that
ultimately might otherwise have saved millions of lives.
More: Bush's presidency in the States paved the way for a
mini-Bush, in the person of Stephen Harper, in Canada. Now, yes,
the Liberals probably had to take a fall after the sponsorship
scandal, so a Conservative government here was probably
inevitable for a short time, but the far-rightwingness of Harper
would have been unpalatable to the Canadian people without Bush
in the White House to make Harper look at least somewhat less
whacko by comparison; Harper's secrecy antithetical to the
Canadian mindset is only tolerated because at least he's not
actively tapping our phone calls or seizing our library-borrowing
records the way Bush is.
The United States is at war; it wouldn't have been if 9/11 hadn't
occurred. Canada and Britain have leaders that are to the
right of their own populations; we wouldn't still have them at
this late date if there hadn't been 9/11. Our once-booming
export economy is being hurt because the US dollar has fallen so
much almost to parity with the loonie; that wouldn't have
happened without the Iraq war, which was a direct consequence of
9/11: somebody had to pay, and we couldn't find bin Laden.
The White House is in denial about global warming, and is
sabotaging stem-cell research, and creationists are getting more
and more powerful; all of that is possible because 9/11 let Bush
an apocalypticist who honestly doesn't believe we have to
worry about the long term be re-elected.
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