AVAILABLE FOR REPRINT. Copy and use freely. Please help PeaceVoice by notifying us when you use this piece: PeaceVoiceDirector@gmail.com
“At some point the US will downsize, draw in its horns from its military forward power projection wars and bases, and assume a more normal stature amongst the world nations. The only question is, will the US be worth saving at that point or will we continue this literal insanity straight over the cliff? All signals are flashing, the klaxons are blaring, and somehow the country seems to be looking only at their entertainment centers…. Militarism and the addiction to amusement while wearing Bad News Cancellation Headphones is our recipe for a long, slow, painful demise. We wonder if and when more might notice?”
Author: Tom H. Hastings directs PeaceVoice, and is on the board of directors of the Peace and Justice Studies Association and on the governing council of the International Peace Research Association
Published in: listing of Highest Rated Blog Articles for H.R. 4899: Supplemental Appropriations (link at http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-h4899/blogs/4?sort=toprated), at Huntington News Network in West Virginia (see http://www.huntingtonnews.net/columns/100729-hastings-columnspeacevoice.html), at Truthout.org (see http://www.truth-out.org/nested-truths-cascading-problems61801), at AllVoices.com (see http://www.allvoices.com/), at BuzzFlash.com (see http://blog.buzzflash.com/contributors/3538), at the Bullhead City Bee out of Bullhead City, Arizona (see http://bullheadcity-bee.com/), in the Portland Observer from Portland, Oregon, and in the Daily Press from Ashland, Wisconsin
Date: July 28, 29 and 30, and August 2, 3 and 6, 2010
For the full article:
Nested Truths, Cascading Problems
by Tom H. Hastings
“House Approves Money for Wars, but Rift Deepens, By ELISABETH BUMILLER and CARL HULSE
WASHINGTON â€” The House of Representatives agreed on Tuesday to provide $59 billion to continue financing Americaâ€™s two wars, but the vote showed deepening divisions and anxiety among Democrats over the course of the nearly nine-year-old conflict in Afghanistan.”
–New York Times, 28 2010
We see at least five basic truths emerging from the Afiascostan situation.
One, Barack Obama baldly lied to us when he promised in his campaign that the days of funding wars via supplemental spending bills–acting as though an ongoing war were suddenly an unpredictable emergency–those days were done. Just elect me, he promised, and you’ll never see that bait-and-switch again. We got gamed. This supplemental was voted in at his personal request.
Two, the war president and his pushbutton Senate and House war allies are committed to absolutely draining the American taxpayer of all lootable funds. All the idiot lights on the American societal dashboard are flashing red–unemployment is worsening, housing is sliding, BP has befouled the Gulf of Mexico for the next century, militarism has penetrated even the grade schools of our coarsening country with Starbase, we are wondering where our next energy meal is coming from–and yet these federal elected ‘leaders’ have just conspired to continue this incredible self-inflicted hemorrhage.
Three, this H.R. 4899 desanguination of both your paycheck and the social services available to you and yours is done despite a nearly Ellbergian whistleblow on the war with the Wikileaks release of 91,000 documents that conclusively prove American war crimes in the conduct of the war. This corpus of open secret disclosures effectively shows yet again that all the US military is ultimately doing there is aiding al-Qa’ida and Taliban and other Islamist recruiting around the world.
Four, applying one bit of commonsense and human decency to this would result in the US ending its armed occupation of Afghanistan and launching a far less expensive rebuilding program via the UN. This would serve to dry up motivation to shoot, bomb, kidnap, stab and otherwise attack Americans. This cannot be done at gunpoint. Rebuilding America’s image will be done by unarmed and unguarded people giving help, never by armed troops. We will do this with nonviolence–gasp!–or it will never be done. Never.
Five, the Republicans will fight tooth and nail against every single thing Obama might try to do for people on the ground. Their unity is mindlessly complete, forming a solid phalanx across access to help for the unemployed, the sick, those needing education, and simple household need for poor people. But give them a chance to vote more money for war and the bipartisan roses suddenly bloom, reddened by the blood of war victims on all sides and by the lifesblood of our culture and society. The Ds and Rs probably couldn’t agree on whether the sun rises in the east, but they can find solidarity in war spending. A Reuters-Ipsos poll this week shows the Democrats-in-the-headlights will pay heavily for this next November 2.
At some point the US will downsize, draw in its horns from its military forward power projection wars and bases, and assume a more normal stature amongst the world nations. The only question is, will the US be worth saving at that point or will we continue this literal insanity straight over the cliff? All signals are flashing, the klaxons are blaring, and somehow the country seems to be looking only at their entertainment centers for the next chapter in the Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton NewsShow. Militarism and the addiction to amusement while wearing Bad News Cancellation Headphones is our recipe for a long, slow, painful demise. We wonder if and when more might notice?
Tom H. Hastings (firstname.lastname@example.org) directs PeaceVoice, a program of the Oregon Peace Institute. He is on the board of directors of the Peace and Justice Studies Association and on the governing council of the International Peace Research Association.