The simple fact is that mindless militarization is being challenged by neither the Congress nor the media. *** We need to stop bankrolling an American empire abroad and address the needs of education and technology; infrastructure; and public health that are the hallmarks of a successful nation. It will take a profile in courage to start the debate to redefine what true security means and to end the costly spiral of militarization.
The appointment to the commission of individuals with deep ties to the contracting and weapons sectors is also consistent with campaign contributions to the chairs of both the House and Senate Armed Services Committees.
War Policy is a Domestic Policy: Much of the pro-NATO left has taken this stand to protect its domestic electoral project. If sending weapons is wrong, their political heroes who repeatedly voted without debate for more weapons are also terribly wrong.
The new Democrats, especially with the presidency of Bill Clinton, became shills not only for corporate America, but the arms industry. The massive military budget, $858 billion in military spending allocated for fiscal year 2023, is an increase of $45 billion over the Biden administration's budget request, and nearly $80 billion more than the amount appropriated by Congress for the current fiscal year.
Why does any legislator believe railroad workers should be forced to use what few vacation days they may have if they fall sick and request permission to be absent days in advance, as if illnesses are scheduled events? Congress members and their staff do not work under these conditions.
At what point does a beleaguered population living near or below the poverty line rise in protest? This, if history is any guide, is unknown. But that the tinder is there is now undeniable, even to the ruling class.
There was no acknowledgement by committee members that the “will of the people” has been subverted by the three branches of government to serve the dictates of the billionaire class. No one brought up the armies of lobbyists who are daily permitted to storm the Capitol to fund the legalized bribery of our elections and write the pro-corporate legislation that it passes. No one spoke about the loss of constitutional rights, including the right to privacy, because of wholesale government surveillance.
"The insistence is upon the United States exercising global primacy of continuing to be number one, a position we've become accustomed to having ever since the end of World War II. I think that conviction remains and is taken seriously, so it's less about a mission to spread democracy [and] it's more about a conviction of history having chosen the United States uniquely to preside over the future of humankind."
"Whatever else is true, the claim with which we are bombarded by the corporate press — the two parties agree on nothing; they are constantly at each other's throats; they have radically different views of the world — is patently untrue, at least when it comes time for the U.S. to join in new wars. Typically, what we see in such situations is what we are seeing now: the establishment wings of both parties are in complete lockstep unity, always breathlessly supporting the new proposed U.S. role in any new war, eager to empty the coffers of the U.S. Treasury and transfer it to the weapons industry while their constituents suffer."
The hearing comes as high prices are squeezing working-class Americans, while corporate profits rise. As inflation rose by 7 percent in 2021, corporate profits increased by 25 percent to reach nearly $3 trillion – a record high. CEOs and shareholders are benefiting heavily from these profits; last year, S&P 500 firms spent more than $900 billion.
“The CIA conducts these sweeping surveillance activities without any court approval, and with few, if any, safeguards imposed by Congress.”