01 May, 2005

The end of 0.8181

At last, the New York and Washington media worlds seem to be getting over their post-traumatic-stress disorder from 0.8181.

First of all, the fiction houses are finally publishing novels about the event. An acquaintance of mine pitched her novel about it a year ago and the publishers totally freaked out, saying it was too close and was an inappropriate subject for fiction. (Similar topic discussed here.) The invisible hand has finally pushed some such novels into print.

And on the non-fiction shelves, we've gotten past the "some Moslems are ok" type of book to a biography of the actual 0.8181 footsoldiers.

But best of all, the news is starting to pick up where we left off in September, 2001:
  • Back in January, 2004, George Bush's approval ratings dropped below where they were pre-9/11. His approval among Americans has remained at or below 53% ever since, always within 50% +/- 3. And press coverage is finally treating him with some skepticism.
  • The U.S. right wing is back to rattling sabers against China, only now it's not about that spy plane but instead over the ever graver currency situation. Remember how China was being accused of helping Pakistan with their nukes? (Neither did I.) But then a month into the Global War on Terror, we ditched that idea and became allies against, our - ahem - common enemy. (That is Uighur, pronounced wee-gher, and yes, they are Muslim.) At last, we're back to normal.
  • Chandra Levy is back. She was the missing white woman of the month back in the summer of 2001. She was mostly out of the news by August, and then something happened and she disappeared from CNN just as she had from DC.
  • Remember how Germany legalized same-sex marriage in August of that year, freaking out some Americans? And how the topic faded into the background a month later? It reemerged a year ago in San Francisco.
  • In June, 2001, 23 Iraqis were killed and 11 injured by a bomb at a soccer field. Oh wait, this is a big change -- nowadays the bombs are set by Anti-Iraqi Forces. Back then such behavior was reserved for Americans.
  • Douglas Adams died in May, 2001. He was resurrected last night.

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