Five years later - are we better off?

Tomorrow night the President speaks to the nation.  He will be looking back at 9/11 and assessing our progress since that terrible day five years ago.  It will be the political equivalent of putting lipstick on a pig.

There is little question the nation is in a much weaker position today.  We have spent trillions on security, taken tens of thousand of casualties and lost a great deal of power and prestige around the world, all in a period greater than the time from Pearl Harbor to the end of WW II - and what do we have to show for it? A Middle East in much greater turmoil today; Osama Bin Laden still alive and active, and terrorist attacks around the world increasing; as Peter Bergen outlines today in the Post, the Taliban resurgent in Afghanistan; Latin America much more hostile to America and our government; our military dangerously degraded, as has the capacity for the UN and other international institutions to take collective action to solve global challenges; global trade talks have collapsed; high oil prices which fueling instability, as Iran, Russia and Venezuela have used their new riches to export anti-Americanism, and our government still has no serious plans to end our dependence on foreign energy sources; as Katrina showed here at home we are still not ready, and DHS continues to be mired in extraordinary bureaucratic and operational troubles;

and finally, as the Senate Intelligence Committee Report confirmed on Friday, our President and his team are epic liers, willing to spin the world into war, serially torture and lie about it - and in the process have seriously degraded America's capacity to lead and pursue our interests around the world. 

The Governing Party's response to 9/11 has been a disaster for America and our interests.  They have made an extraordinary effort, and it has left us much worse off today.  Simply put what they tried after 9/11 failed.

So, on this difficult anniversary, tomorrow should not be just a day to remember the fallen, but a day to recommit ourselves to find a new American strategy that brings greater peace and prosperity to the world; firmly re-commits our government to the formula that worked so well for America for so long - advocacy of democracy, free markets, liberty and the rule of law; and above all, I hope a day to inspire us to not accept our nation's current path, but to commit to do what is in our power, each of us, to restore the promise of this great nation we love and the world so desperately needs.