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View Diary: A Pacifist's Thoughts on Memorial Day (31 comments)

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    •  This country came to love war as Reality TV (9+ / 0-)

      It's not hard to love a painless video game w/ no draft, or even a surtax.  Actually, at this point, >60% of Americans want out of Afghanistan.  Even painless war loses its appeal after awhile.

      While I still have problems w/ a draft, the past decade would've been very different had one existed.  I have no problems w/ a war surtax, which, in and of itself, would've changed many minds.  There are plenty of yellow ribbon wearers out there who would never pay an extra dime in taxes to feed the Pentagon's insatiable appetites.

      What's truly sad about this campaign is that said appetite won't be an issue in this GE.  There was an excellent book salon on FDL last night which contained the following observation:

      It’s over half of federal discretionary spending. It’s over half of global military spending. It’s many times the next nation of any sort. It’s several times all conceivable “enemy” nations combined. NATO is 3/4 of global military spending. It’s not only not reduced since the end of the cold war — it’s much higher than at any time during the cold war, and as high or higher than during World War II. Most of it is preparation and empire, as opposed to specific wars. Shifting to robotic warfare doesn’t look likely to do much to lower financial costs — or human costs, if we count non-USians as humans and if we consider consequences and blowback. You’ll hear that it’s low as a share of GDP but that suggests that we muct spend more on war preparation just because we can. It’s not low, but high, as a real dollar amount, a share of federal spending, and a share of global military spending. And it’s not that the US has stepped into this role, taking over for a previous empire. No nation has ever done anything like this before.
      Except, maybe, for Bernie S. and a handful of House members, how many Dems would utter these self-evident truths today?  You sure as hell won't see these points raised on the national level.  While I'm not a pacifist, I do think that the MIC as presently constituted is an affront to both God and man.

      As noted pacifist Dwight Eisenhower said in 1953:

      Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a
      theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world
      in arms is not spending money alone.
      It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.
      The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities.
      It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population.
      It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway.
      We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat.
      We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people.
      This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking.
      This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is
      humanity hanging from a cross of iron.
      Too bad we never hear anything like that today.

      Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

      by RFK Lives on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:48:16 AM PDT

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      •  Have you ever wondered... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RFK Lives, SherwoodB

        ...why today's republicans never speak of Eisenhower?  Herbert Hoover gets more attention than does Ike

        "if you don't make peaceful revolution possible, you make violent revolution inevitable." ….JFK. .......{- 8.25 / -5.64}

        by carver on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:21:32 AM PDT

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        •  W/ speeches like that and his MIC reference in (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aliasalias, Dump Terry McAuliffe

          his Farewell Address, that's an easy question to answer. Plus, if the contemporary GOP views Obamneycare as some kind of socialist plot, imagine what they'd say about the Interstate Highway System.  Goldwater said that Ike ran "a dime store New Deal."

          Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

          by RFK Lives on Mon May 28, 2012 at 10:07:46 AM PDT

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    •  Great eassay by Jim Dwyer (0+ / 0-)

      on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.

      In Love With Death

      Light is seen through a small hole.

      by houyhnhnm on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:52:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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