The 12 Step Method

I am not talking about some sort of addiction self-help plan……wait maybe I am…..

The news seems to be that the US is gearing up for yet another regime change….this time it is Venezuela…..

There is a 12 step technique that has been employed in the past and it looks like they shall try it again…..

Let’s look back to Chile in 1970…….

Step One: Colonialism’s Traps. Most of the Global South remains trapped by the structures put in place by colonialism. Colonial boundaries encircled states that had the misfortune of being single commodity producers – either sugar for Cuba or oil for Venezuela. The inability to diversify their economies meant that these countries earned the bulk of their export revenues from their singular commodities (98% of Venezuela’s export revenues come from oil). As long as the prices of the commodities remained high, the export revenues were secure. When the prices fell, revenue suffered. This was a legacy of colonialism. Oil prices dropped from $160.72 per barrel (June 2008) to $51.99 per barrel (January 2019). Venezuela’s export revenues collapsed in this decade.

Step Two: The Defeat of the New International Economic Order. In 1974, the countries of the Global South attempted to redo the architecture of the world economy. They called for the creation of a New International Economic Order (NIEO) that would allow them to pivot away from the colonial reliance upon one commodity and diversify their economies. Cartels of raw materials – such as oil and bauxite – were to be built so that the one-commodity country could have some control over prices of the products that they relied upon. The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), founded in 1960, was a pioneer of these commodity cartels. Others were not permitted to be formed. With the defeat of OPEC over the past three decades, its members – such as Venezuela (which has the world’s largest proven oil reserves) – have not been able to control oil prices. They are at the mercy of the powerful countries of the world.

Step Three: The Death of Southern Agriculture. In November 2001, there were about three billion small farmers and landless peasants in the world. That month, the World Trade Organisation met in Doha (Qatar) to unleash the productivity of Northern agri-business against the billions of small farmers and landless peasants of the Global South. Mechanisation and large, industrial-scale farms in North America and Europe had raised productivity to about 1 to 2 million kilogrammes of cereals per farmer. The small farmers and landless peasants in the rest of the world struggled to grow 1,000 kilogrammes of cereals per farmer. They were nowhere near as productive. The Doha decision, as Samir Amin wrote, presages the annihilation of the small farmer and landless peasant. What are these men and women to do? The production per hectare is higher in the West, but the corporate take-over of agriculture (as Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research Senior Fellow P. Sainath shows) leads to increased hunger as it pushes peasants off their land and leaves them to starve.

Step Four: Culture of Plunder. Emboldened by Western domination, monopoly firms act with disregard for the law. As Kambale Musavuli and I writeof the Democratic Republic of Congo, its annual budget of $6 billion is routinely robbed of at least $500 million by monopoly mining firms, mostly from Canada – the country now leading the charge against Venezuela. Mispricing and tax avoidance schemes allow these large firms (Canada’s Agrium, Barrick and Suncor) to routinely steal billions of dollars from impoverished states.

Step Five: Debt as a Way of Life. Unable to raise money from commodity sales, hemmed in by a broken world agricultural system and victim of a culture of plunder, countries of the Global South have been forced to go hat in hand to commercial lenders for finance. Over the past decade, debt held by the Global South states has increased, while debt payments have ballooned by 60%. When commodity prices rose between 2000 and 2010, debt in the Global South decreased. As commodity prices began to fall from 2010, debts have risen. The IMF points out that of the 67 impoverished countries that they follow, 30 are in debt distress, a number that has doubled since 2013. More than 55.4% of Angola’s export revenue is paid to service its debt. And Angola, like Venezuela, is an oil exporter. Other oil exporters such as Ghana, Chad, Gabon and Venezuela suffer high debt to GDP ratios. Two out of five low-income countries are in deep financial distress.

Step Six: Public Finances Go to Hell. With little incoming revenue and low tax collection rates, public finances in the Global South has gone into crisis. As the UN Conference on Trade and Development points out, ‘public finances have continued to be suffocated’. States simply cannot put together the funds needed to maintain basic state functions. Balanced budget rules make borrowing difficult, which is compounded by the fact that banks charge high rates for money, citing the risks of lending to indebted countries.

Step Seven: Deep Cuts in Social Spending. Impossible to raise funds, trapped by the fickleness of international finance, governments are forced to make deep cuts in social spending. Education and health, food sovereignty and economic diversification – all this goes by the wayside. International agencies such as the IMF force countries to conduct ‘reforms’, a word that means extermination of independence. Those countries that hold out face immense international pressure to submit under pain of extinction, as the Communist Manifesto (1848) put it.

Step Eight: Social Distress Leads to Migration. The total number of migrants in the world is now at least 68.5 million. That makes the country called Migration the 21st largest country in the world after Thailand and ahead of the United Kingdom. Migration has become a global reaction to the collapse of countries from one end of the planet to the other. The migration out of Venezuela is not unique to that country but is now merely the normal reaction to the global crisis. Migrants from Honduras who go northward to the United States or migrants from West Africa who go towards Europe through Libya are part of this global exodus.

Step Nine: Who Controls the Narrative? The monopoly corporate media takes its orders from the elite. There is no sympathy for the structural crisis faced by governments from Afghanistan to Venezuela. Those leaders who cave to Western pressure are given a free pass by the media. As long as they conduct ‘reforms’, they are safe. Those countries that argue against the ‘reforms’ are vulnerable to being attacked. Their leaders become ‘dictators’, their people hostages. A contested election in Bangladesh or in the Democratic Republic of Congo or in the United States is not cause for regime change. That special treatment is left for Venezuela.

Step Ten: Who’s the Real President? Regime change operations begin when the imperialists question the legitimacy of the government in power: by putting the weight of the United States behind an unelected person, calling him the new president and creating a situation where the elected leader’s authority is undermined. The coup takes place when a powerful country decides – without an election – to anoint its own proxy. That person – in Venezuela’s case Juan Guaidó – rapidly has to make it clear that he will bend to the authority of the United States. His kitchen cabinet – made up of former government officials with intimate ties to the US (such as Harvard University’s Ricardo Hausmann and Carnegie’s Moisés Naím) – will make it clear that they want to privatise everything and sell out the Venezuelan people in the name of the Venezuelan people.

Step Eleven: Make the Economy Scream. Venezuela has faced harsh US sanctions since 2014, when the US Congress started down this road. The next year, US President Barack Obama declared Venezuela a ‘threat to national security’. The economy started to scream. In recent days, the United States and the United Kingdom brazenly stole billions of dollars of Venezuelan money, placed the shackles of sanctions on its only revenue generating sector (oil) and watched the pain flood through the country. This is what the US did to Iran and this is what they did to Cuba. The UN says that the US sanctions on Cuba have cost the small island $130 billion. Venezuela lost $6 billion for the first year of Trump’s sanctions, since they began in August 2017. More is to be lost as the days unfold. No wonder that the United Nations Special Rapporteur Idriss Jazairy says that ‘sanctions which can lead to starvation and medical shortages are not the answer to the crisis in Venezuela’. He said that sanctions are ‘not a foundation for the peaceful settlement of disputes’. Further, Jazairy said, ‘I am especially concerned to hear reports that these sanctions are aimed at changing the government of Venezuela’. He called for ‘compassion’ for the people of Venezuela.

Step Twelve: Go to War. US National Security Advisor John Bolton held a yellow pad with the words 5,000 troops in Colombia written on it. These are US troops, already deployed in Venezuela’s neighbour. The US Southern Command is ready. They are egging on Colombia and Brazil to do their bit. As the coup climate is created, a nudge will be necessary. They will go to war.

Keep an eye on the events around Venezuela you will witness these techniques at work……after  40+ years and they cannot come up with an easier and better way to protect democracy….like that was ever going to be the end result

Let’s be honest….our coups or regime changes in Latin America have not always been a good thing…….

As the world watches aghast at another US and allies’ attempt to engineer a coup in Venezuela, I would like to offer a few insights from Stephen Kinzer’ provocative chapter, “The deep hurt,” (pp. 227-250) in his book, The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of the American Empire (2017). This remarkable text carries some hope and lessons for all of us. It tells the story of the great conflict around the turn of 20thcentury about the role that the US might play in either dominating the world or building a cosmopolitan democracy where all people feel secure that they reside in one country, the earth. Indeed, Kinzer states: “Anti-imperialists decisively influenced American history by helping to ensure that the first burst of American annexation would be the last” (p. 228).

Even swash-buckling Teddy Roosevelt was influenced, losing his zest for the idea of conquest.  When he charged into the White House he held two views simultaneously, intervene to help other people, without oppressing them. Kinzer thinks that this dichotomy “torments our national psyche” (p. 229). In the early parts of the book Kinzer sets out the anti-imperialist (Mark Twain) and pro-imperialist visions (Henry Cabot Lodge). These speeches are worth gathering round for reflection.

https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/02/13/the-deep-hurt-lessons-from-american-coups/

Gee!  Why not ry it one more time….what could it hurt?

Advertisements

Making America Known Again–Part 26

I have been posting a history of the US from historian Maj. Danny Sjursen….his is an alternative look other than what we are programmed to believe…..

For those that I have not been reading along from the beginning then I will give you a chance to get caught up….(the series is well worth the time to read and appreciate)…..

Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; Part 4; Part 5; Part 6; Part 7; Part 8; Part 9; Part 10; Part 11; Part 12; Part 13; Part 14; Part 15; Part 16; Part 17; Part 18; Part 19; Part 20; Part 21; Part 22; Part 23; Part 24; Part 25.

Now that you are caught up….let us move on to World War Two and Part 26……

The United States’ role in the Second World War has been so mythologized that it is now difficult to parse out truth from fantasy. There even exists a certain nostalgia for the war years, despite all the death and destruction wrought by global combat. Whereas the cataclysm of World War II serves as a cautionary tale in much of Europe and Asia, it is remembered as a singularly triumphant event here in the United States. In fact, the war often serves as but a sequel to America’s memorialized role in the 20th century: as back-to-back world war champ and twice savior of Europe. The organic simplicity of this version suits the inherently American vision of its own exceptionalism in global affairs.

However, there is a significant difference between a necessary war—which it probably was—and a good war. In fact, “good war” might be a contradiction in terms. The bitter truth is that the United States, much as all the combatant nations, waged an extraordinarily brutal, dirty war in Europe and especially the Pacific. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt cut nasty deals and allied with some nefarious actors to get the job done and defeat Germany and Japan. In the process, he, and those very allies, shattered the old world and made a new one. Whether that was ultimately a positive outcome remains to be seen. Nevertheless, only through separating the difficult realities of war from the comforting myths can we understand not only the burden of the past but the world we currently inhabit.

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/american-history-for-truthdiggers-just-how-good-was-the-good-war/

An excellent look at American history…..

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismiss!

Say Good-Bye To The Shah

I have to go to the doctor this morning so I leave (for now) with a history lesson (was that an eye roll?)

40 years on and the US is still slobbering to return to the days of the Shah…but the Fall……

the 40th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution, we published an articleexplaining what the revolution can teach us about the economic and political problems facing Iran now. Today, I’d like to focus on the geopolitical implications of the revolution that saw the overthrow of the Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, and the rise of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. It was a formidable time for the country, but the existing geopolitics of the region remained largely intact.

Most observers didn’t expect the shah to fall, although many claimed afterward that they had predicted it. The shah, who was essentially installed by the United States and Britain, was used as a bulwark of the American containment strategy. He unseated democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh, who the U.S. feared was aligned with the Soviets, and helped to block Soviet access to the Persian Gulf. He claimed to be the heir to the Iranian monarchy, but in reality, he sat on the throne because of a coup staged in 1925 by his father, Reza Shah Pahlavi, a military officer who himself had no connections to the long line of Persian monarchs.

Mohammad Reza Pahlavi enjoyed immense wealth but left his people profoundly unsatisfied, both economically and spiritually. Emulating Turkey’s Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, his father had sought a secular, militarist and authoritarian path to modernization. Iran’s merchant class didn’t care much about the modernization plans and demanded a cut of the country’s wealth. The shah appeared indifferent to their plight.

Khomeini did not. He bound up the grievances of the merchants and the peasants with the tenets of Shiite Islam. While sitting in exile in Paris, he sent copies of his sermons and speeches in which he laid out how the shah had betrayed Islam and stolen the wealth of the nation through his lavish and lascivious lifestyle. Experts dismissed him and the growing dissatisfaction, believing that discontent was a constant reality in Iran and that the shah could contain it.

From the American point of view, the shah was a great comfort. In 1973, OPEC, led by Saudi Arabia, had cut off oil shipments to the United States and parts of Europe. At the time, the Saudis were involved in the Arab-Israeli War and sought to outflank Soviet-sponsored Arab movements, especially Palestinian ones. The Soviets had supported coups in Iraq and Syria and backed paramilitary groups from both countries that were formally designed to confront Israel but were actually far more focused on Saudi Arabia. If Saudi Arabia could be destabilized and the flow of oil interrupted, the Soviets thought, the position of the United States and Western Europe would be vastly weakened.

But the Saudis beat the Soviets to the punch by imposing an oil embargo themselves, undercutting Soviet attempts to make it appear that Saudi Arabia was an American puppet. The price of oil soared, creating a global recession. For the United States, the embargo was a mixture of pain and pleasure. On one hand, it caused massive economic disruption. On the other, it was Saudi Arabia, not a Soviet-linked Palestinian group, presiding over an Arab renaissance.

Iran, an enemy of Saudi Arabia, continued to ship oil to the West and made a lot of money in the process, which it largely spent on defense. There was serious talk of Iran becoming a regional hegemon and a nuclear power. The U.S. didn’t vigorously object to any of this. Given the global oil shortage, even after the embargo had ended, the United States had two overriding interests: to contain the Soviet Union and its apparent proxy, Iraq, and to ensure access to the Persian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz.

U.S. intelligence worked closely with SAVAK, the shah’s intelligence service. The agency became Washington’s chief source of information on Iran – but SAVAK didn’t transmit any warning about the uprising to the U.S., either because it didn’t want to or because it didn’t anticipate the level of the unrest. Moreover, the United States’ other intelligence sources in Iran were part of the elite – the higher the sources, the greater the knowledge they can share, or so the U.S. believed. The problem, however, was that the elites were profiting from their ties to the regime and so were unlikely to reveal evidence of its demise until it was too late.

More important, it’s not easy to find sources who know when uprisings will occur and how they will turn out. The last people to know the shah was going to fall were those in the powerful classes, on whom the U.S. relied for intelligence. The idea that an extreme Shiite leader, sitting in exile in Paris, could manage an uprising against the man who could have brought the country to regional hegemony ran counter to all notions of power and continuity in Washington. President Jimmy Carter went out of his way to show his support for the shah almost to the end. It was inconceivable that the powerful would not remain powerful, or that a trained army could not defeat a rabble of protesters.

Those outside the government were equally deluded. Human rights groups loathed the shah for torturing and murdering his people. They made the same mistake that similar groups often make: believing that if a vile government is overthrown, what replaces it will be better. To appease his dissenters, Khomeini appointed a moderate, Mehdi Bazargan, as prime minister. But Bazargan’s liberal positions came into conflict with those of the radical Shiites who controlled the revolution, and his government fell.

The U.S. learned two lessons from this experience. First, you can’t rely solely on official intelligence sources to figure out what’s happening on the ground. Sometimes, the most valuable piece of intel is the reality staring you in the face. Second, geopolitics can be shifted but not obliterated. Iran under an Islamic regime was as hostile to Iraq and the Saudis and ambivalent toward the Kurds as it was under a secular one. Some things changed (Iran became hostile toward the United States), but other things stayed the same (its tensions with the Soviets continued). And as hostile as the U.S.-Iran relationship became, the U.S. continued to help supply Iran with weapons (hence the Iran-Contra affair). Geopolitically, regime change doesn’t alter as much as you might expect.

I’m still surprised at the failure of truly intelligent men and women in and out of government to understand that the shah was about to fall. In the 1980s, many of us were equally unable to grasp that the Soviets were hanging on for dear life. What is so obvious in retrospect was shrouded in the moment. But it shouldn’t have been. It was there for all to see, but recognizing it required looking behind the appearance of power and breaking the habit of believing that things always stay the same. The fall of the shah meant many things, but the failure to foresee his demise was ultimately about a lack of imagination and the inability to grasp that what was true yesterday might not be true tomorrow.

Your history lesson is complete…….and now a Neocon assessment of Iran…..

Forr almost two years, before President Trump ordered the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria in December 2018, the Trump administration pursued an Iran policy based on the use of all instruments of national power to stop Tehran from engaging in a wide array of aggressive and malign behaviors that defy global norms. In his May 21, 2018 speech, “A New Iran Strategy,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on Iran to end verifiably its nuclear weapons and advanced ballistic missile programs, cease its support for terrorism and the destabilization of foreign governments, release all hostages, and halt its aggression against Israel and other U.S. allies.1

To achieve these objectives, the administration designed a strategy to pressure the regime – diplomatically, economically, and militarily. To that end, the administration walked away from the nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and reinstated the comprehensive sanctions that had forced Iran to the negotiating table in 2013. The focal point of U.S. strategy was to intensify the Iranian regime’s ongoing liquidity crisis, which threatened to cripple its economy as a whole. The secretary of state also insisted the U.S. “will advocate tirelessly for the Iranian people,” who endure grave human rights violations and pervasive corruption. The Trump administration made it clear that it did not seek regime change, but would take advantage of the Islamic Republic’s deficit of legitimacy. In short, the U.S. purported to implement a policy of maximum pressure.

https://www.fdd.org/analysis/2019/01/31/midterm-assessment-iran/

According to the Neocons we should fear Iran…….but they prefer bullsh*t to facts…..

Regime Change–Crappy Record

I know there is so much news to watch that it all is hard to take in….and that is why I am hear…..Venezuela is in the news….not headlines right now but it will be for you see the US is doing what it always does……regime change…..

But sadly our attempts at regime change have not had a good track record……it all began in 1954 with the coup in Guatemala…..

Puppet-building is an essential strategic goal of the US imperial state.

The results vary over time depending on the capacity of independent governments to succeed in nation-building.

US long-term puppet-building has been most successful in small nations with vulnerable economies.

The US directed coup in Guatemala has lasted over sixty-years – from 1954 -2019. Major popular indigenous insurgencies have been repressed via US military advisers and aid.

Similar successful US puppet-building has occurred in Panama, Grenada, Dominican Republic and Haiti. Being small and poor and having weak military forces, the US is willing to directly invade and occupy the countries quickly and at small cost in military lives and economic costs.

In the above countries Washington succeeded in imposing and maintaining puppet regimes for prolonged periods of time.

The US has directed military coups over the past half century with contradictory results.

https://www.globalresearch.ca/us-regime-changes-historical-record/5667692

I am sorry but a country that cares about democracy does not plan coups….it is that simple…..

It isn’t pretty — and to hear the right wing tell it, it’s the future the U.S. left wants for our own country. As if to prevent that, the Trump administration is now fomenting a coup in Venezuela.

They’ve publicly recognized an unelected opposition leader as president, discussed coup plans with Venezuela’s military, and sanctioned oil revenues the country needs to resolve its economic crisis. They’re even threatening to send U.S. troops.

They’ll tell you this about restoring “democracy” and “human rights” in the South American country. But one look at the administration officials driving the putsch perishes the thought.

https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/01/31/people-who-care-about-democracy-dont-plot-coups-abroad/

I am old enough that I can say “Here we go again” and know what I mean.

I have been watching the news and they are doing what they do….playing important part in generating consent for regime change….

 The latest extraordinary chapter in the bizarre world of Venezuelan politics is playing out before our eyes. After winning the 2018 presidential elections, Nicolás Maduro was inaugurated in January, only for the head of the National Assembly, Juan Guaidó — a man whom, at the time, less than 20 percent of the country had even heard of — to declare himself President.

Guaidó was immediately backed by the governments of the U.S. and U.K., with Vice President Mike Pence stating, “Nicolás Maduro is a dictator with no legitimate claim to power. He has never won the presidency in a free and fair election, and has maintained his grip of power by imprisoning anyone who dares to oppose him.”

I’ve previously cataloged how the media has been quick to echo the idea that Maduro is completely illegitimate and has been eager to position America’s stance towards Venezuelan politics as one of a neutral arbiter.

https://theantimedia.com/media-manufactures-consent-regime-change-venezuela/

Side note:  How long will it be before our “really smart president” calls Guaido the usurper in Venezuela…when will he call him “Guido”?

Oh World War One

For the past few years IST has been posting on the 100 year anniversary of World War One. the Great War……as a student of conflict I am fascinating about the causes and results of a war that cost so many lives and has no match in carnage….

The question has been asked many times…..what lessons were learned from that war?

The past weeks should have been a remarkable occasion to reflect on history, on the magnitude, costs, and legacy of what was once commonly known as the Great War, the most cataclysmic single war in Western history ever up until that point or at least since the fall of Rome and easily one of the worst and most lethal in world history.

And yet reflection on the war and its horrific costs and legacies has been woefully lacking. Whether it was due to questionable political and behavioral decisions during centenary commemorations that overshadowed the remembrances, a news media that sorely lacks competency in this type of historical examination, or a combination of reasons, something vital was missing: sober reflection that takes a measure of history, of its impact on the present and potential effects on the future, and on the many millions of lives cut short in conditions few of us could even imagine, let alone endure.

Indeed, it is hard to say which is most stunning: the incredible impact that four measly years in the span of human history had on the world one-hundred years ago, the impact it is still having and will continue to have, the incredible toll of lives lost (around some 16.5 million dead—about half military, half civilian—by some solid estimates, surpassed only by the next, and, we may hope, last, World War that followed just a few decades later), or the utter lack of general awareness today of all of these things.

https://mwi.usma.edu/urgent-lessons-world-war/

I found a good series of videos about the conspiracy of WW1……..

Part One……

Part Two……

Part Three……

It still amazes me at the destruction and death that this conflict produced…..

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

Thomas Paine: America’s Founder

09 February 1737….the birth of Thomas Paine

Paine is a hero to me…..I was given a copy of Common Sense by my grandfather when I was 10 years old……and later he gave me his book on the collective works of Paine……..so I was reading Paine at an early age and continue to do so today…..he is the one person on my list of famous people to have a beer with (if I ever get the chance). I am convinced that Jefferson wrote the DoI from notes given to him by Paine.

He is the original founder of the United States of America…..as a matter of fact he was the first person to use that title.

I have written several pots about Paine and his life…..

 
 
To say that Paine was a “Liberal” is an understatement as you have seen in the posts above…..so that is where I do not understand why many conservs and even Tea Party supporters use Paine as a icon or as their site name….he stood for the very things that they are always yelling about and condemning…..
 
Now that I have that off my chest….
 
The man that wrote the words that lead this nation to war with their mother nation is also a man that was later hated because of his views….confusing right?
 
When Thomas Paine’s ship pulled into Baltimore harbor on October 30, 1802, a large gathering of friends and admirers were waiting at dockside to welcome him back. Others stood by as well, some filled with loathing, merely to observe a famous figure. Since leaving the United States in 1787 to find a builder for his iron bridge, Paine had authored some of the most incendiary tracts of the 18th century, had been imprisoned and narrowly escaped Robespierre’s guillotine, and was widely reported to be a drunk and an atheist.

When he journeyed to Federal City on November 5 to pay his respects to the country’s third president, he found that he needed an alias and help from a presidential aide to get a room at Lovell’s, the city’s only hotel. As he later wrote a friend and future biographer, Thomas Clio Rickman,

“You can have no idea of the agitation which my arrival occasioned. From New Hampshire to Georgia (an extent of 1,500 miles), every newspaper was filled with applause or abuse.”

https://mises.org/library/thomas-paine-libertys-hated-torchbearer

Paine will always be the person in history I most admire….so when I read about his treatment after the revolution just galls me….but it showed just how “one way” the American people can be.

Well Said!

Learn Stuff!

What Is The Military-Industrial Complex?

For years I have been writing about the “evils” of the military-industrial complex….how it controls our foreign policies….how it has a strangle hold on the members of Congress through massive donation to their election trunks……

Then I realized that I may not have given a clear definition of this situation…..yep a history lesson…..

The term “Military-Industrial Complex” was first used by Ike in his farewell speech…..

Now that you have heard the first use….let us go to the history books….

The term the”military-industrial complex” was made famous by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in his 1961 farewell address. Eisenhower warned:”In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” Eisenhower (or his speechwriters) did not coin the phrase, but its previous usage referred to physical connections between industrial and military production, not political relationships. Eisenhower referred to a novel set of challenges facing the American polity in the Cold War, while other definitions refer to more general relationships between the military and industry.

One use of the term MIC refers to any set of relationships between military policy and industrial production. For example, scholars have examined the MIC in the former Soviet Union and in Latin American countries. Their concern is usually with the reciprocal influence of the military and industry on each other’s policies, rather than the hijacking of foreign policy by a collective interest in maintaining military-related production.

http://hnn.us/articles/869.html

The only good to come out of this is jobs……everything else is just making a few extremely wealthy and use to start conflicts worldwide.

This is a slightly different look at the infamous M-IC…..

Military-Industrial Complex is an unofficial phrase used to signify the “comfortable” relationship that can develop between government entities (namely defense) and defense-minded manufacturers/organizations. This union can produce obvious benefits for both sides – warplanners receiving the tools necessary for waging war (while also furthering political interests abroad) while defense companies become the recipients of lucrative multi-million or multi-billion dollar deals.

“War for profit” is not an exclusive approach for modern times as it drove the best and worst of old Europe for many decades – perhaps best exemplified by the naval arms race seen between France, Spain and Britain. The driving force behind these initiatives was generally in out-doing a potential foe and, therefore, forcing the establishment of a large standing military force to counter the moves of the potential enemy. The modern interpretation of this, as it relates to the Military-Industrial Complex, is only slightly altered in that the established military force is now utilized to further global interests – the enemy is no longer another nation per se but any organization not in line with presented ideals.

https://www.militaryindustrialcomplex.com/what-is-the-military-industrial-complex.asp

Further Reading for those interested……

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2014/01/big-money-behind-war-military-industrial-complex-20141473026736533.html

https://www.thedailybeast.com/the-military-industrial-complex-is-real-and-its-bigger-than-ever

To illustrate how far the M-IC tentacles reach…..just look at the news of troop withdrawals issued by the president…..and the Dems are pretty silent even war-like in their response….

One month after President Donald Trump abruptly ordered thousands of troops to pull out of Syria and Afghanistan, only a handful of the Democratic Party’s likely 2020 presidential candidates have taken a stance on one of the most important U.S. foreign policy decisions in years.

The drawdown in Afghanistan and total withdrawal from Syria is expected to significantly alter the fight against the Islamic State militant group and potentially leave American-allied militias vulnerable as the U.S. begins to extricate its forces. The decision has also triggered backlash from the U.S. security establishment, including the resignation of top officials like former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/democrats-2020-syria-afghanistan_us_5c40f6d9e4b027c3bbbf849b

The party use to be a reliable source of accountability…that has vanished.

The assault on the M-IC has gone into the land of activism…..

The MIC maintains itself through support from politicians across the right and the left enabled by policies and lack of accountability to public. Public awareness raising about the existence and harm of this system is step one. We have seen awareness raising and education turn the tide of war before, when it drastically shifted public favor against the Iraq war and propelled it to be a key voting issue in the 2008 presidential primaries. Important progress was achieved then but the wars continue and it’s time to organize for structural policy changes. Some examples include

https://aboutfaceveterans.org/drop-the-mic-campaign/

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!