The first link presents some of the ways the 9/11 attacks have altered our way of life, perhaps changing America (moving toward worse) perhaps forever, with endlessly expanding security apparatus (apparati?), inconvenience, loss of privacy, and all present fear. The link goes to Fareed Zacharia
The second (which also references the first) concentrates on the Guantanamo trials which the Bush torturers boxed us into and which Obama seems unable or unwilling to extricate us from. The simple answer, of course, is what many of thought before the War on Terror was declared. The bombers were (are) criminals, should be hunted down as such, hauled into U.S. court and packed away on ice forever in supermax (if convicted, of course). That would have been the way to go if we had strong enough faith in our justice system, conviction that our way was the best way and were not so stupid, (as a nation) as to be easily manipulated into bogus wars that served Bush political agendas. We did not have such faith or confidence and so timidly marched into the box. This, the second, is to the great Charles P. Pierce in Esquire.
Now, the third link is only obliquely political but it goes a long way to exposing how stupid, as a way of life, shows up everywhere.