There’s Always Room for Endless War: Billions More for Afghanistan but NONE for Needs at Home

Congress OKs Endless War Image

In the face of the Wikileaks documents exposing the futility of our murderous, un-winnable, adventures in Afghanistan, Congress approved ANOTHER deficit-ballooning war supplemental while nixing deficit-neutral funds to prevent the layoffs of approximately140,000 teachers.  Proving, once again, that the “deficit hawk”, “we must cut spending” meme only gets trotted out when Republicans are further turning the screws on the Middle Class their policies are actively meant to destroy.

A House aide said that the teacher money is a top priority for Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and House Appropriations Committee Chairman David R. Obey, D-Wis… but apparently not as important as pouring unlimited resources into Afghanistan – historically unconquerable since Genghis Kahn.

The final bill contained 37 Billion for a war that, according to the leaked Pentagon internal documents, is destroying our economy and making us less safe.

The bill also cut $10 billion in funding to prevent teacher layoffs, $1 billion for summer youth employment, $5 billion for Pell grants and $701 million for border security, all of which were offset and budget-neutral, whereas the war funding actually increases the national debt.

Here we are again.   Fake Republicans and Democrat in Name only, so-called “deficit hawks” who only seem to appear when the late, great, American Middle Class needs relief from the disastrous effects of 30 years of Reaganomics.

The majority of Americans now oppose the war, yet those who are sent to Washington to supposedly represent us, insist on continuing it.

This is a failure of our democracy the same way war is a failure of leadership.   Unfortunately for us, war is also quite profitable for the rich benefactors who keep our so-called representatives well greased in Washington.

Our system is broken and corrupted by money.  Period.  We were warned, though.

Eisenhower warned us of the dangers of the “Military-Industrial Complex”, and our 4th President James Madison wrote,

“Of all the enemies to public liberty, war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds are added to those of subduing the force of the people. The same malignant aspect in republicanism may be traced in the inequality of fortunes and the opportunities of fraud growing out of a state of war, and in the degeneracy of manners and of morals engendered by both. No nation could reserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.”

Two time Medal of Honor winner, General Smedley Butler wrote in War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America’s Most Decorated Soldier

“A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small “inside” group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

In the World War [I] a mere handful garnered the profits of the conflict. At least 21,000 new millionaires and billionaires were made in the United States during the World War. That many admitted their huge blood gains in their income tax returns. How many other war millionaires falsified their tax returns no one knows.

How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle? How many of them dug a trench? How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets? How many of them parried a bayonet thrust of an enemy? How many of them were wounded or killed in battle?

Out of war nations acquire additional territory, if they are victorious. They just take it. This newly acquired territory promptly is exploited by the few – the selfsame few who wrung dollars out of blood in the war. The general public shoulders the bill.

And what is this bill?

This bill renders a horrible accounting. Newly placed gravestones. Mangled bodies. Shattered minds. Broken hearts and homes. Economic instability. Depression and all its attendant miseries. Back-breaking taxation for generations and generations.”

It’s been reported that, like the billions of dollars missing in Iraqm, billions are missing in Afghanistan – billions of dollars in OUR MONEY that was shipped on pallets and in giant suitcases and is now, most likely, sitting in the Swiss Bank accounts of Afgan drug—lords.

could going to create jobs in the US, send kids to college, revitalize our crumbing infrastructure or put us on the road to energy independence.

The fact is, even the Pentagon has reported that there are less than 100 Al-Qaeda operatives in Afghanistan. It’s also been reported that we’ve been aware that it holds vast mineral riches for the taking of any once-vibrant democracy turned oligarchy willing to turn its youth into, as General Butler described, “high class thug(s) for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers.”

This is the world we are creating for future generations.  With education available to only the rich, there’s sure to be no shortage of “paupers” willing to be, as Thomas Jefferson wrote, “shot at for a shilling a day.” Of course, the tragedy is that he was bragging to his friend Dr. Thomas Cooper,

“our men are so happy at home that they will not hire themselves to be shot at for a shilling a day. Hence we can have no standing armies for defense, because we have no paupers to furnish the materials.”

I’m afraid that our Founders, as well as many of our predecessors, would be sorely saddened by the fact that we did not heed their warnings and turned the government of “We the People” they passed down into just another sad, dying, empire, functioning to keep the rich in the cat-bird seats of power, looking down at a large pool of cheap labor to exploit and send to war.

This is Post-“American Dream” America – where so few do so much damage to so many… and Republican and DINO leaders respond with, “so what?”

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  • Wrong on both counts:

    1) By moving to retaliate against the aggressors in Iraq and Afghanistanm the Republicans have always favored ending war by going after the root causes. Face it, Saddam Hussein’s regime was one of constant warfare and aggression. And thanks to the actions of Bush (and Dems such as Biden and Hillary), the problem is mostly solved. The number of terrorists in that country is almost nothing compared to when Saddam Huseein was in power, and the constant slaughter of the Hussein years is a thing of the past, as Iraq’s death toll approaches that of LA County.

    As for Afghanistan, the idea that the war is “unwinnable” is a lie put forth by the terrorists for years. Now many Americans are repeating this lie, perhaps wanting the terrorists to win in the end.

    And, about “none for needs at home”, remember when the Republicans were in charge. The overwhelming majority of the budget went to domestic concerns. Trillions, in fact. Trillions spent for “needs at hope” puts the lie to the “none” claim.

  • In response to the above comment from the anonymous poster called “none.” I let this comment stand as an illustration to how Republicans love to throw their talking point lies into the din without any factual basis or proof to back them up. They figure that, most people being ignorant, won’t check their lies and simply accept their talking points so as to confuse working people into voting for their own demise.

    The whole of comment “1)” is nothing a reiteration of Republican fiction woven for the sheeple during the drumbeat to war. As we know from Dick Cheney’s secret energy meetings where the oil industry was allowed to write our energy policy… their main concern was not that Saddam Hussein was an evil bastard (after all… he had been OUR bastard for when the Soviets were wasting their lives and treasure in the place where empires go to die…) but that, according to the April 2001 report, “Strategic Policy Challenges for the 21st Century, “Iraq remains a destabilizing influence to the flow of oil to international markets from the Middle East.”

    The report continued… “Saddam Hussein has also demonstrated a willingness to threaten to use the oil weapon and to use his own export program to manipulate oil markets. Therefore the US should conduct an immediate policy review toward Iraq including military, energy, economic and political/diplomatic assessments.” (emphasis my own)

    Paul O’Neill, the Bush Administration’s first treasury secretary, has been credited with describing the White House had an interest in invading Iraq from the first days of the Bush presidency.

    In Ron Suskind’s 2004 book, “The Price of Loyalty,” O’Neill said an invasion of Iraq was on the agenda at the first National Security Council. There was even a map for a post-war occupation, marking out how Iraq’s oil fields would be carved up. Read more about the lies of the Bush Administration and their need for a corporate oil war here.

    This whole “Saddam Hussein’s regime was one of constant warfare and aggression…” meme is all part of the Republican penchant of “fixing the facts around the policy…” as the Downing Street Memo reveals.

    As for Afghanistan… just what does “winning” look like? Republicans – and now the Obama Administration… have no bloody clue…. but we do throw trillions of dollars at it (as billions of dollars go missing without a trace) while our infrastructure at home crumbles and millions struggle to find work while Republicans attack their social safety net – as well as the unemployed themselves – caught on the losing end of 30 years of disastrous, middle-class-killing, Plutocracy-creating, supply-side Reaganomics.

    So… Mr. or Ms. None (a typical Republican too cowardly to use an actual name or email)… ends his or her Republican apologist spin by stating, “the overwhelming majority of the Republican budget went to domestic concerns” without one single link or fact to back it up. That’s because, simply, it isn’t true. The only “domestic programs” that Republicans fund are more tax cuts for the rich and their transnational corporations who want nothing more but to ride the working people of America to the bank unfettered by the only institution powerful enough to slow them down – our government of “We The People.”

    In fact, Ronald Reagan’s own Office of Management and Budget Director, David Stockton explains that the entire economic mess that the United States is in today is the fault of his own party – the GOP. Stockton warned at the time that a combination of increased “defense” expenditures and tax cuts for the rich would destroy the economy. Now he says that the fruits of Republican ideology are worse than he could have imagined. Read Stockton’s view on Reagan’s “borrow and spend so-called prosperity” and the GOP destruction of an economy that once worked for all – not just the Wall Street bankster gamblers.. here.

    As we speak, true to form Republicans are attempting to cut domestic programs from this year’s budget. “The 2 percent trim from the $1.13 trillion budget proposed by President Barack Obama, which Republicans are calling for, could result in the reduction of after-school programs, worsen the shortage of air traffic controllers and cut veterans employment programs.” Read the rest here.

    So… Mr. or Ms. “None’s” figure about how that benevolent GOP spent TRILLIONS on domestic programs is as much a fairy tale as Reaganomics trickle-down prosperity.

    Frankly, I really wish I knew whether Mr. or Ms. “None” was an actual person or one of the Republican pay-per-posters that infest the web and talk radio – especially as the election cycle gears up. Yes. It’s true. That is how anathema Republican policies are to working people – they actually hire people to post right-wing talking points on websites in order to give the illusion that Republican policies have something to offer the other 98%.

    Check out a pay-per-post ad here.

    – Taradacktyl

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