democracy

Move the money from wars and weapons back to our communities!

By Judith Le Blanc

 
January 17 marks the 50th anniversary of President Eisenhower’s military industrial complex” speech. As he left the White House, Ike warned that the synthesis of the military and corporations in setting government policies would present a growing danger to democracy.

 
In 1953, at the beginning of his presidency, Ike gave a speech, not often quoted, in which he said, “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.”

 
Ike’s predictions were not only true then, they define exactly where we are now. The economic crisis, high unemployment and cuts in human services compel us to organize grassroots support for even deeper cuts in the Pentagon budget.
Secretary of Defense Gates announced “preemptive cuts” to head off more aggressive proposals that are being debated among a cross section of elected officials and political pundits.

 
The latest “shot across their bow” is from President Reagan’s former Budget Director David Stockman, who called Gate’s proposal for a $78 billion cut to the military budget a “pin-prick” to a military-industrial complex that must drastically shrink for the good of the country. He added, “It amounts to a failed opportunity to recognize that we are now at a historical inflection point at which the time has arrived for a classic post-war demobilization of the entire military establishment.”

 
To take full advantage of this political moment, Peace Action is helping to organize an array of community and peace groups to form the New Priorities Network. It’s going to take long term movement building to shift federal funding priorities from weapons to schools, and waging wars to rebuilding infrastructure.

 
The New Priorities Network is launching a massive Resolutions Campaign as a tool to galvanize grassroots pressure to cut the Pentagon budget to fund human needs. The aim is to build a community effort by visiting community groups and promoting educational events and building momentum for city, state bodies and elected officials to take a stand for changing the Federal spending priorities. Sample resolutions, fact sheets and other materials will be available soon. The Resolutions Campaign will also provide the opportunity to participate in nationally coordinated local actions throughout 2011.

 
The first action will be: Brown Bag Lunch Vigil on Wednesday, January 19. Rally outside your local congressional office at noon and send in a delegation to talk with staff about ending the wars, really cutting the Pentagon budget, and ending the economic crisis in our communities. To find a vigil near you, go to http://pdamerica.org and click on the brown bag.

 

 

 

7 replies »

    • “Let’s Bring Our War $$ Home!”

      That’s just what I’m afraid of:

      David Stockman’s remark,”“It amounts to a failed opportunity to recognize that we are now at a historical inflection point at which the time has arrived for a classic post-war demobilization of the entire military establishment.”

      Our opponent is not without skills in strategy. We behave, and worse propagandize, as if they have no generals, no officers. That they are without experience in warfare. Further more they know we waited too long to investigate other energy sources while we were only interested in their oil; and while President George Herbert Walker Bush,sr. not only down-sized physics and chemistry departments of Ivy League universities.
      but decimated them by forcing their staffs to be let go and having to negotiate applications for jobs in Rust Belt areas of the U.S. but he underestimated the enemy.

      Father and son did not save money. They spent it lavishly, having borrowed it from our “arch enemy because of feeling sure the taxpayers would make good the debt; and did so with no inclination to recognize a dangerous recession in the public economy was arriving with emergency panic acted out by our own thieving executives. Now, our House of Representatives have voted to give this same bunch of rascals a reduction of their taxes. How stupid do they think their constituents, the voters, are?

  1. I can hear my father’s words even today, quoting President Eisenhower’s warning: “Beware the Industrial Military Complex”. President Eisenhower was the my very first Presidential vote — I was 18 yrs. old. He was a Republican and a military man but he knew the perils of combining corporations and warmongers — and here we are 50 yrs. ago reaping the sad results of the ‘Industrial Military Complex’.
    How can we put an end to their mighty power? Is it too late? I am now a grandmother of seven and fear for their generation and future generations. The United States is nothing but a war machine with blood on our hands for the deaths of millions of innocent people. Will we ever be brave enough to wage peace instead of war?

  2. I am confuse about one thing whenever I see the people dying from hunger and the governments spending money on their defense. What? Can’t they see that how many people in the world sleep without having a dinner. Don’t they know ? and if they know… What stops them to care more about the poor people than worrying about wars and strategic plans

  3. The war machine can only get away with its nefarious death-dealing business by peddling fear. That’s all they got, that and our acquiescence.

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