Quote of the day: 9/11 as convenient smokescreen


From a blog post by Columbia University urban planning professor Peter Marcuse, son of noted political philosopher Herbert Marcuse:

The events of September 11 have thus been used as a smokescreen to cover policies serving the interests of those benefiting from globalization, whether at the local, the national, or the international, level, and concealing the extent to which the reality being pursued differs from its purported ideological rationale. At the local level, very visibly in New York City, they have permitted the already powerful forces of real estate and the global financial interests they see as their best market an almost untrammeled influence over the development of the city, accentuating a concentrated deconcentration and citadelization of business activities and furthering the segregation of the city. At the national level, they have been used, under the banner of security from attack, to marshal support for a neo-liberal domestic agenda, restrict protest, and undercut opposition to it. Internationally, they have been used, under the banner of a coalition against terrorism, to consolidate the unilateral power of the U.S., revealing inadvertently the importance of military power and the nation-state in the maintenance of a global economy. In each case, the contrast between the ideology of really existing globalization and its reality is stark; the smokescreen developed around 9/11 cannot long cover the discrepancy. The skewed impact of really existing globalization has been strengthened by the ideological use of 9/11, and the task of opposition made more difficult, but also more necessary. It is a fact widely acknowledged, but its logical (or illogical) relationship to 9/11 is rarely reexamined.

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