We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Monday, September 15, 2014

Who’s Paying the Pro-War Pundits?

Click here to access article by Lee Fang from The Nation. 

This piece provides an illustration of the military-industrial complex in action. But, it also provides an illustration of the way liberals react in a limited form to government actions that don't conform to prevailing myths about the rule of law and representative government. 

Although this liberal source doesn't like the strong ties between the "peoples" representatives and weapons contractors, they carefully limit their criticism by describing the latest planned aggressions in Iraq and Syria as "debatable", and whine about Obama not complying with the constitutional power of Congress to declare war--as if this hasn't already been established as legitimate by precedents from a long history of US engagement in wars without a formal declaration by Congress ever since the Korean War. The shadow government simply relies on members of Congress to approve military spending in support of wars after they make the decision to go to war, thereby avoiding any debate about engaging in military actions. 
...what you won’t learn from media coverage of ISIS is that many of these former Pentagon officials have skin in the game as paid directors and advisers to some of the largest military contractors in the world. Ramping up America’s military presence in Iraq and directly entering the war in Syria, along with greater military spending more broadly, is a debatable solution to a complex political and sectarian conflict. But those goals do unquestionably benefit one player in this saga: America’s defense industry.