I don’t know much about Osama bin Laden. But I’ll tell what I think of him. Unlike most people, I don’t think he was a crazy and evil man. I think he was an entitled rich boy. This allowed him to be just like rich guys all over the world: absolutely certain that whatever stupid thought entered his brain must be right. Most rich people follow the likes of Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman who tell them that they deserve their wealth—that it is a sign of just how morally superior they are to all the prols they walk on.
But bin Laden was different: he took his marching orders from the Quran. It seems that like most believers of the Abrahamic religious, his reading of the book was simplistic and based mostly (Just like other rich people!) on his existing prejudices that he wanted to justify. If you look at his career, such as it is, he wasn’t that successful. He just spent a lot of time hanging around, most of the al-Qaeda leadership had abandoned him, and his greatest “success” was a fluke that certainly worked better than even he could have expected.
I imagine him sitting around his compound during those last years. He watched his pornography. He wrote about the coming Islamic revolution. Maybe he watched the newest Bollywood films. He was a man of leisure—just like all the men of his class. Anyway, he would be celebrating his birthday today if it weren’t for the fact that he is dead.
Luckily, Edie Brickell is 46 today. So I get to listen to the the Top 10 hit, “What I Am”: