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Mobs, Messiahs, and Markets by Lila Rajiva, Will Bonner

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The Madness in His Methods—9/11 and 7/11

It is not just that Thomas Friedman's metaphors clash with each other like mismatched furniture at a yard sale. What insults logic is that he tries to squeeze his theories into his metaphoric hand‐ me‐downs.

Having latched onto “flatness” as his theme, he crams a whole swathe of technical, economic, and political developments into it, without hindrance of reason. He even employs kabbalistic numbering for the effort. There are ten flatteners … four steroids … three convergences—9/11 (the attack on the World Trade Center) is mystically born out of 11/9 (the fall of the Berlin Wall), but it's also connected to 8/9, the day Netscape released its initial public offering. Who would have thought? And why stop there? Why be so selective? Looked at properly, an almost infinite number of things are related to 9/11.

Let's see. The long stock market crash in 1973 began on 1/11. That was just about when the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was tightening the screws on the West and reasserting the power of Arab nationalism. Undoubtedly, there's a direct connection to the attacks on the Twin Towers just there.

Or what about 9/11/1941, when the construction of the Pentagon began officially? How about that? Surely the fall of the Berlin Wall wasn't half as annoying to all those scowling young Saudi or Pakistani men as the rise of the Pentagon. Didn't one of those hijacked planes hit the Pentagon? We rest our case!

Or why not 11/9/1938, ...

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