Solution Still Unsatisfactory

If you aren’t a reasonably hardcore science fiction fan, be warned: this post won’t make much sense to you.
Still here? Well, you were warned.
Nielsen Hayden points out Bill Humphries’ observation that since 9/11, we appear to be living in a world scripted by Ken MacLeod:
“You see, Wolfowitz is our Colonel Volkov. Volkov transforms Nova Babylonya, and Wolfowitz transforms America, in both cases Republics, and both nations into engines to defend the State against external aggressors.”
A debate has taken flight in Patrick’s comment section (complete with a reminder of Godwin’s Law), to which I added my own small contribution, which I’ll expand upon here:
At the risk of tripping over one of the corollaries to Godwin’s Law, for me, life since 9/11 hasn’t so much seemed like one of Ken’s futures (although let me add a brief digressive hat-tip here to Mr. MacLeod for his fine, fine novels).
It’s been a Heinlein future: Solution Unsatisfactory, to be precise. Wolfowitz isn’t Colonel Volkov. He’s Colonel Manning.
For those of you who haven’t read this story, you should: it can be found in The World’s of Robert A. Heinlein, which seems to be available at Powell’s used. It may also be in another collection, though I am not certain. Published in 1940, it describes the discovery of a superweapon that proves vital in the outcome of World War II — and beyond that, I will not say more, other than to note that I have yet to be able to answer the dilemma Heinlein points out.
Which shouldn’t be much of a shock, as humanity as a whole has been trying to do so for the past sixty years, to no avail…