More ranting from my time wasted in the nonviolence.org website (I really should be doing my homework for Spanish class (¡Que lástima!)):
Meg, I remembered watching a program on PBS about the crazy things swirling around defense spending, and I looked it up. It was an episode of Bill Moyers’ show. Here’s a link to some of the info presented in the show. You might find the part about Chuck Spinney especially interesting.
Personally, I think this is another one of those areas where the incestuous relationship between some of big business and our elected officials isn’t illuminated enough by the press. I wonder if most citizens knew how much of their tax revenue was being wasted into this foul matrix, would they demand accountability?
To be in such a free and open society, we sure seem to have developed an ability to behave like sheep. Is the patriotic indocrination so effective as to get us to ignore just about anything our government waves the flag over? I’m all for respecting the people who are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for their fellow humans, but its important to note that the grunt who’s asked to kill or be killed has nothing at all to do with where our tax dollars go. Unfortunately, there are those in our government who quickly jump behind the symbol of the brave G.I. (and they get plenty of help from certain elements in the corporate mass media) whenever questions are raised about defense spending, or even about the wisdom of certain military engagements. Maybe there’s a magic spell encoded in the pledge of allegiance that prevents most of us from seeing through this. Maybe because our country has never been carpet-bombed or brutally occupied, we can sit back, enjoy our wealth, and not care (at least until its our own child/spouse/parent who comes home broken or in the box).
I’m prattling on, of course, Meg. Its just that I get tired of seeing so many intelligent people turn their nose up at the notion of getting involved in their civic duties (voting, serving on juries, paying attention to government, etc.). When our wealthy corporate masters tell us its time to go kill and die, we’re supposed to jump without asking “how high.” If this is supposed to be a free democracy worth that level of sacrifice, what’s wrong with expending the energy to make sure our elected officials aren’t running away with the store? Is it reasonable to believe that if we demand that our government behave in a manner respecting freedom and democracy, and not just keep up the charade while they pave the way for increasing corporate profits, that their foreign policy won’t have us jumping into wars every decade?
It is my belief that wars are usually started over money and resources. In the case of Iraq, the main resource is oil, and the flow of money is going from U.S. taxpayers to Bush administration cronies. Control over the flow of oil and money are the reasons that our government supported Saddam Hussein for so long, and the neocons running the show saw the post-9/11 climate as their chance to finally get rid of their troublesome errand boy.
As usual, big business will clean up while average working Merrkins will be asked to tighten their belts and throw their sons and daughters into the money-making war machine. My only question is, what will it take before enough of us finally get fed up with business as usual?