by David Swanson
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Dec. 11, 2014
Why people want to become fans of a senator rather than pushing senators to serve the public is beyond me.
Why people want to distract and drain away two years of activism, with the planet in such peril, fantasizing about electing a messiah is beyond me.
And when people who’ve chosen as their messiah someone who isn’t even running for the office they’re obsessed with, respond to criticism with “Well, who else is there?” — that makes zero sense. They’ve made the list and could make it differently.
But here’s what’s really crazy about talking to Elizabeth-Warren-For-Presidenters. If you complain that she hasn’t noticed the military budget yet, they tell you that doing so would cost her the election. And when you reject that contention, they tell you that wars are just one little issue among a great many.
Now, when Congress was cooking up a Grand Bargain to solve the debt “crisis,” people who were polled almost universally rejected any of the acceptable solutions under consideration, such as smashing Social Security. Instead, they said they wanted the rich taxed and the military cut. When pollsters at the University of Maryland show people the federal budget, a strong majority wants big cuts to the military. This is nothing new. People favor cutting war spending. People who elected Obama believed (falsely) that he intended to cut the military.
A different and more substantiated argument would be that turning against military spending would cost Warren the support of wealthy funders and the tolerance of media gatekeepers. But that does not seem to be the argument that Warren-For-Presidenters make.
It’s the “just one issue among many” thing that’s truly nuts. Look at this:
One little item makes up over half the discretionary budget, the things a Senator votes to spend money on or not spend money on. Does Warren think this massive investment in war preparation is too much, too little, or just the right amount? Who the hell knows? Can anyone even be found who cares?
The cost of one weapons system that doesn’t work could provide every homeless person with a large house.
A tiny fraction of military spending could end starvation at home and abroad.
The Great Student Loan Struggle takes place in the shadow of military spending unseen in countries that simply make college free, countries that don’t tax more than the United States, countries that just don’t do wars the way the U.S. does. You can find lots of other little differences between those countries and the U.S. but none of them on the unfathomable scale of military spending or even remotely close to it.
Financially, war is what the U.S. government does. Everything else is a side show.
In the typical U.S. Congressional election, the military budget is never mentioned by any candidate or commentator. But surely it’s fair to ask Senator Warren, with her great interest in financial questions and economic justice, whether she knows the military budget exists and what she thinks of it.
As far as I know, nobody has asked her. When asked about Israel bombing families, she literally ran away. When asked again, she gave her support to the mass killing.
When a candidate is never asked about a subject, most people simply imagine the candidate shares their own view. This is why it’s important to ask.
Of course, many people actually think that war is only one little issue among many others and that, for example, funding schools is totally unrelated to dumping over half the budget into a criminal enterprise. To them I say, please look carefully at the graphic above.
David Swanson‘s books include “War Is A Lie.” He blogs at http://davidswanson.org and http://warisacrime.org and works for http://rootsaction.org. He hosts Talk Nation Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @davidcnswanson and FaceBook.
The Top 5 Things That Screw Over Americans in 2015 Spending Bill
breakingtheset on Dec 11, 2014
Abby Martin discusses the spending bill that is about to be voted on by Congress and the various ways that it screws over regular Americans.
Sanders Says No to Bloated Defense Budget
Bernie Sanders on Dec 11, 2014
#NDAA 2015 Passes In House of Representatives + It Allows Obama To Expand War Against ISIS
from the archives:
Chris Hedges Supports BDS + Aftermath of Assault on Gaza Worse Than Operation Cast Lead
Congress Passes Austerity Budget for the Workers, Poor but Not the Military by Kathy Durkin
Humanity may be in peril, but the planet certainly isn’t. Earth has been around for 6 billion years and take any punishment human kind will ever be able to dish out.
Thanks for your comment, Louis, but exactly what prompted your comment for this blog post?
Strange comment, Louis. The planet is in peril with rapid extinctions of many species in the plant and animal kingdom not to mention marine life as well.
Between chemical pollution, the destruction of rainforests, pollution of waterways, and heaven help us- a thermo-nuclear war, the Earth might have a bad case of indigestion that could linger on for quite some time.
Pingback: Invest in Activism, Not Bernie Sanders by David Swanson + The Problem with Bernie Sanders by Ashley Smith | Dandelion Salad
Pingback: Michael Hudson: Pensions of Union Workers Cut in Federal Budget | Dandelion Salad
Pingback: If Hope Remains Dormant, Freedom Remains Elusive | Dandelion Salad
Pingback: Russian Roulette: Taxpayers Could Be on the Hook for Trillions in Oil Derivatives | Dandelion Salad
Pingback: The Koch Brothers’ Governors by Jeffery Sommers and Michael Hudson | Dandelion Salad
Pingback: Ralph Nader: The Budget Is A Collective Display of Twisted Priorities and Insane Declarations By Congress | Dandelion Salad
Pingback: The Global Bankers’ Coup by Ellen Brown | Dandelion Salad