Monday, January 10, 2011

"The American Empire Is Done" Needed: "A Classic Post-War Demobilization of the Entire Military Establishment" - David Stockman (Ex-Reagan Warmonger)

Well, I guess it's always good news that not everyone out there on the right wing wants the country to continue on its path of devastating the middle class with spending that only enriches those at the top. Or is it? Let's hope there's no evil agenda attached to these words from this one-time Reagan budget fraudster. David Stockman, Director of the Office of Management and Budget under Reagan, has been making some very liberal noises lately about spending on both social programs and wars (making me wonder if he hasn't gotten sorry for his misspent early life as one of Reagan's financial fakers - remember how giving tax cuts to the rich would "trickle down" on us all, creating much more prosperity than just treating everyone equally under our progressive income tax system would?). It has taken the liberal establishment by such surprise that it's hardly mentioned seriously before they go on to real fake financial news like the necessity for decreasing Social Security and their easily-proved fraudulent worries about the growing deficit but not the tax cuts they promote that increase it by easily a trillion dollars over the next decade. So, can this be true? We can only hope that they've seen the light (emphasis marks added - Ed.).

The Obama administration's $78 billion cut to US defense spending is a mere "pin-prick" to a behemoth military-industrial complex that must drastically shrink for the good of the republic, a former Reagan administration budget director recently told Raw Story.

"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," David Stockman said in an exclusive interview.

"The Cold War is long over," he continued. "The wars of occupation are almost over and were complete failures - Afghanistan and Iraq. The American empire is done. There are no real seriously armed enemies left in the world that can possibly justify an $800 billion national defense and security establishment, including Homeland Security."

Short of that, he suggested, the United States has "reached the point of no return" with its artificial creation of wealth, and will eventually face a sharp economic decline.

Stockman last fall criticized the extension of the Bush tax cuts while the federal government continued to borrow money abroad to pay for its public welfare and warfare programs. His solution to deficit spending - a huge across-the-board tax increase - is contrary to the current anti-tax ideology shared among tea party activists as well as fiscal conservatives in the Republican Party.

Stockman, who was appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1981 to run the Office of Management and Budget, offered two models for the US military's compulsory demobilization: the one after World War I in 1920 and the one after World War II in 1946.

Calling today's military spending running at 5.4 percent of GDP "simply an absurd level that begs for radical contraction and surgery," he said that a "reasonable target" to shrink the defense establishment would be 3 percent of GDP by 2015.

Please read the whole article. For your financial sake. I'm a big fan of the Brad Blog, which reminds us of the atmosphere pervading the US before the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy and its pertinence today. It's not pretty, folks, but we shouldn't look away. Did you know that the right wingers (CIA-backed) had "Wanted Posters" issued on President Kennedy in Texas that day? A good question after reading Brad's essay is "Who pays Howard Kurtz (and his wife) and all the others of their ilk masquerading as unbiased reporters to spread such evil propaganda? Take a look, please (emphasis marks added- Ed.):

Violent Rightwing Rhetoric Doesn't Kill People. People Living in a World Where They Hear A Lot of Violent Rightwing Rhetoric Kills People.

Any of that look or sound familiar?

If not, and if you didn't see the Tucson Shooting coming months and months ago, then you are living in a world of complete and utter delusion.

If you are, like pretend media critic Howard Kurtz, finding rationalizations and excuses to justify what happened yesterday, dismissing it all as little more than the work of a "lone nutjob", you are similarly deluded and among the most dangerous of apologists.

You are also anything but "conservative", since the core of that ideology used to include personal responsibility.

Taking none, unfortunately, seems to be the new hallmark of the no longer any more than name-only movement. Remember what happened after this video-taped moment in September of 2009, when Nancy Pelosi called for "taking responsibility for our words" before tearing up while recalling the assassination of Harvey Milk in her own district in the 70's, and while decrying the scores of death threats and broken windows at offices of Democratic members of Congress after they'd voted in favor of Health Care Reform?...

The Right, fomented by Glenn Beck of all people, obnoxiously savaged her for her concerns about the growing threats of violence against members of Congress: Pelosi's concerns, viciously mocked by the Right at the time, seem all too prescient today. Beck's reaction, cause for firing if Fox "News" had any standards whatsoever.

The above moments (courtesy of a timely "flashback" post by Double Dutch Politics) came just a few months after the Right had savaged the Obama Administration's Dept. of Homeland Security for releasing a report on the rising tide of Rightwing extremism, as ordered and created by the Bush Administration before it.

The false Rightwing outrage was so loud, and the Democrats were so cowardly, Obama's Administration retracted and apologized for the report that warned about almost exactly what we saw yesterday in Tucson - and what we've seen time and again, several times a month, over the last two years since the report was retracted.

If you click on nothing else in this article, click on this exhaustively documented timeline detailing the (almost entirely) Rightwing insurrectionism over the last two years, as fomented, virtually without pause, by Rightwing media, candidates and elected officials over that same period. Bookmark that page. You're gonna want to keep it handy.

If your apologist memory needs still more of a refresher, here are just a few more reminders of recent Fox "News" murder fetishism, none of which speaks to the nearly round-the-clock, anti-Government, anti-"Democrat", anti-liberal, anti-progressive 24/7 villainization and vilification by Rightwing talk radio or even the years-long eliminationist rhetoric from Rightwing superstars such as Ann Coulter and the like.

After detailing just three recent instances of deadly Rightwing assaults by "lone nutjobs", Kurtz, of CNN and The Daily Beast (formerly of the Washington Post), instructed us yesterday that he found calls for accountability for those who would foment such "lone nutjobs" to be terribly "depressing" for him, since they can't really be held to blame for such things - no matter how many times they keep occurring.

One can only wonder if Rep. Gabrielle Giffords would similarly enjoy the luxury of being "depressed" by hearing such calls. Poor Howard.

Poor us for living in a society where folks like Kurtz (married to a Rightwing operative, by the way) "serve" the nation by sufficing as our top MSM media critics.

But let's not reserve all the condemnation for the Rightwingers and their apologists. There is plenty of blame left for the Democrats and the Obama Administration (and the supporters of both) who have failed to take even one step towards reforming the broadcast media where Rightwing corporations have been allowed to "buy" up our public airwaves to use them for their own nefarious purposes to the exclusion of we, the people, who actually own them.

Neither have they taken a single step to assure the FCC performs its statutorily mandated responsibility for enforcing the provision that requires broadcast licenses be used in the public service.

For those on the Left who suggest talk radio isn't all that important since, after all, there is so much progressive reporting available on the Internet, here are a few points recently detailed by documentarian and former reporter Sue Wilson [Note: Wilson incorrectly uses the name "Conservative" instead of the more accurate Rightwing or Republican]:

\ 53 million people in the U.S.listen to Talk Radio. \ 91% of Talk Radio Programs are Conservative. \ 2,570 hours of Conservative Talk Radio are broadcast each weekday...compared to 254 hours of Progressive Talk. \ 92 percent of talk radio stations do not broadcast a single minute of progressive talk radio programming. \ Radio has the greatest penetration of any media (print, broadcast, or digital,) reaching 90 percent of Americans each week. \ Despite the availability of numerous new media alternatives, radio's weekly reach has declined only modestly in the past several years, from 94.9% in Spring2001, when the iPod was introduced, to 91% in Fall '08. \ Sean Hannity gets 2.5 million viewers on FOX News, but 14.25 Million listeners on Talk Radio. \ Glenn Beck gets 2.125 million viewers on FOX News, but 9 million radio listeners.

And one more stark point from Wilson's study, underscoring the necessity of restoring fairness and balance to the nation's broadcast spectrum:

As we noted at Alternet long ago, Obama promised to take steps towards reforming the media situation that we are paying so dearly for now, on his very first day in office, before quietly scrubbing such promises down the memory hole while largely nobody but us noticed or even cared.

But in this moment, at this time of entirely predictable and oft-predicted tragedy, our loathing is reserved for those who would hope to marginalize or dismiss entirely their own responsibility by desperate and shameful acts of false equivalency or disingenuous exhortations against "the blame game".

Did I mention that I'm a huge fan of Brad? Please read it all.

And start asking questions! It's the least we can do for the innocent victims. Suzan ___________________


The Blog Fodder said...

Glad you like Joni Mitchell, a girl with tremendous talent and Saskatchewan roots.

Suzan said...

Ha! Glad you said "girl" as she's a figure worthy of vast admiration and emulation for me (and has been for decades), and she's a few years older than I.

I've been a huge fan since her second album which I envied lustily (if that be a meaningful concept) in college.

As a former guitarist (not good) I've been regretting for the last two decades that I didn't move to CA and live in Laurel Canyon (or some approximation somewhere where they would let me in) and develop my talent (whatever was there long ago) because I pursued an academic career in software (highly touted at that time) which led to me being permanently replaced at 42 by underpaid workers (mainly foreign) who were only learning about the field and would take years to reach my level of understanding when they themselves would then be laid off by our kind and very wealthy masters.

Ah. (but I digress)

To even be a shadow of Joni!

Thanks for commenting,


The Blog Fodder said...

Joni may even be a couple years older than me but in my mind she is forever as old as she was in the late 60's, early 70's, when I was in university.

We were all too busy making a living to make a life. Maybe a second career isn't too late, Suzan? Seems to me hard times generates a specific kind of music? "Google "Hard Times Come Around No More"

Suzan said...

"Forever young," like Bob said.

Something about being alive and engaged then and being able to hang onto our ideals that keeps us still forever young.

Yes, friend, if I could I'd buy a guitar, search for today's Laurel Canyon and start playing again.

Ah! If only.

Love ya,