My latest at Rare makes a fiscal case for cutting back the warfare state:
Consider the following:
- What if I told you there’s a government program which will cost taxpayers more than Obamacare will over the next ten years?
- What if that program was just one function of a sprawling government agency which has not been audited in two decades?
- What if that agency was the third-largest contributor to our $17 trillion national debt, which breaks down to $55,000 per citizen?
What if the same agency wasted tens of billions of dollars annually on projects and goods unrelated to its mission? (Like a study on “whether men holding pistols are viewed as taller, stronger and more masculine than those wielding objects such as saws, paint brushes and caulking guns.” Or “a conference that included a session titled ‘Did Jesus Die for Klingons too?’” Or “research on what the behavior of fish can teach us about democracy.”)
- What if it also regularly paid hundreds of times the market value for commonplace items?
- And squandered billions more on outdated equipment which just doesn’t work?
- And prioritized cuts in vital programs rather than big-budget flops?
- And lost hundreds of millions to waste and corruption in foreign programs?
- And destroyed valuable equipment rather than repurposing it?
- And blew big bucks on cross-promotions with superhero movies?
- And gave high-dollar contracts to companies known to engage in fraud—contracts totaling more than $1 trillion in the last ten years?
- And built buildings which will never be occupied?
- And reported to Congress that it simply couldn’t account for $1 trillion (yes, trillion) it had spent?
- And yet it still plans to spend the equivalent of the entire GDP of Sweden on a single purchase over the course of the next fifteen years?
What if this agency regularly and intentionally doctored the books to hide these wasteful practices from taxpayers?
For any fiscal conservative, the conclusion must be that this incredibly wasteful, deceptive, and nonproductive government agency is seriously overdue for audits, possibly criminal charges, and huge—massive—ginormous spending cuts. Right?
That program was the War in Iraq. That agency is the Department of Defense. That spending is war spending. And the DoD does indeed waste absurd amounts of money on unrelated projects galore, incredibly overpriced purchases, obsolete weaponry, poor prioritization, nation-building projects, destroying equipment, promoting the recent Superman flick, fraudulent contractors, empty buildings, unaccountable spending, and planes that cost as much as Sweden’s GDP. The DoD has been caught doctoring the books on a grand scale.
Yes, war really is just one more big government program: It’s costly. It’s wasteful. It’s poorly managed and rife with incompetence and fraud.
I do not say this lightly or to be provocative. I am dead serious. I have chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee. I still teach constitutional law. I’ve consulted with some of our leading constitutional scholars. The Constitution is clear. And so am I.
Joe Biden, 2007.
So he’ll be calling for impeachment of President Obama over this Syria situation, right?
Can we all just agree that anything any politician ever says is just political posturing?
Interesting article; definitely worth a read
You probably have paid more than you feel comfortable with.
Sixteen-month-old Aubrey Melton reaches for her father SSG Josh Melton as she views his remains with her mother Larissa before his funeral service June 27, 2009 in Germantown, Illinois. SSG Melton, who was serving in Afghanistan with the Illinois National Guard, was killed in Kandahar during an IED attack June 19. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
"The I-201 submarine was nothing like anybody had in the Second World War. It had a streamlined body and conning tower, retractable guns and three catapult-launched bombers"
hmm, that sounds good. i’ll take two of each.
In my head, this is how it works:
The paratroopers are lined up in the aircraft, decked out in gear and sitting on their bikes. Then their sarge says “Go!”, they ride out the back of the cargo plane all dramatic-like, turn flips and such most of the way down, set off their parachutes 50m up, and then mere meteres above the ground they cut the cords to the chutes, hit the ground rolling, and ride at wild speeds downhill for 20 miles and kill 200 Taliban soldiers (each) all before ever coming to a stop.
This is how I choose to believe it works.
[EDIT: Now that I think about it, I’m sure there will also be some dual-handed sniping of enemies on the ground, or even in the air, during the free-fall]
What They Won’t Show You On Television
The documentaries below reveal the parts of reality that we are not suppose to talk about; the parts of reality that contradict common sense, but still go on unquestioned by the global media cartel and unanswered by our governments. Spread the Word.
- 9/11 Chronicles: Truth Rising, The
- America: Freedom to Fascism
- American Blackout
- Architects of Control
- Capitalist Conspiracy, The
- Century of the Self, The
- Children of the Secret State
- Corporation, The
- Cosmos: Carl Sagan
- Disappearing Male, The
- End of America, The
- Enemy Image
- Esoteric Agenda
- Fallujah: The Hidden Massacre
- Flow - For Love of Water
- Fourth World War, The
- Genetically Modified Food - Panacea or Poison?
- Global Warming or Global Governance?
- Holes In Heaven?
- How The Kids Took Over
- I Know I’m Not Alone
- Illuminati, The
- In Their Own Words
- Israel Lobby, The
- Invisible Children
- Killing Us Softly 3: Advertising’s Image of Women
- Life Running Out Of Control
- Lost Lightning: The Missing Secrets of Nikola Tesla
- Magical Egypt
- Manufacturing Consent
- Money as Debt
- Natural Mystery
- Occupation 101: Voices of the Silenced Majority
- Orwell Rolls In His Grave
- Other Worlds
- Out Of The Blue
- Peace, Propaganda, and the Promised Land
- Philosophy - A Guide to Happiness
- Primacy of Consciousness, The
- Ring of Power
- Secret Government: The Constitution in Crisis, The
- Secret Life of Plants, The
- Secrets of the Occult
- Slavery: A Global Investigation
- Steal This Film II
- Story of Stuff, The
- Tank Man, The
- Towers of Deception: The Media Cover-Up of 9/11
- Truth According To Wikipedia, The
- U.S. vs. John Lennon, The
- Unconstitutional: The War on Our Civil Liberties
- Union: The Business Behind Getting High, The
- WACO: The Rules of Engagement
- War Made Easy
- War On Democracy, The
- We: Arundhati Roy
- Who Killed The Electric Car
- World According to Monsanto, The
- Why We Fight
- Zeitgeist: Addendum
- Zero: An Investigation into 9/11
** Note: This site streams literally dozens (I counted 65 so far) of top-notch documentaries for free. No hook. No joke. They are hard to find even by a seasoned Torrent junkie’s standard and you will certainly not find them at your local video store or Netflix list. Check it out and spread the word.
I don’t know when I’ll have the time to watch many of these, but they all sound fascinating and important. I do know a little about the Invisable Children, conscripted child-soldiers in Uganda, which is an terrible situation that few know about.
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.
~ Matthew 5:23-24
Marcos and Felicity (above) ride a bike from village to village in Rwanda telling their story of reconciliation. In the 1994 genocide, Marcos murdered eight people, including several members of Felicity’s family, while she hid in the nearby bushes.
When the genocide ended and Marcos ended up going to prison, Felicity says she wouldn’t have hesitated to kill him. When he was released several years ago, he faced a community “gacaca” court, where he confessed his crimes in detail and seemed truly repentant, but Felicity wasn’t ready to forgive.
Over the next couple of years, though, she became a Christian and began considering the possibility of forgiveness. Marcos came to her home, got down on his knees before her, folded his hands, and begged for forgiveness—which she granted while putting a hand on his shoulder. Marcos told CT it felt like a “holy shower,” that he felt clean on the inside for the first time in many years. And Felicity said it was like having a crippling burden released from her back. Today, they ride the bike around, telling their amazing story of reconciliation, and many others throughout Rwanda have similar stories to tell.
2009 marks the 15 year anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide.
“A P-47 Thunderbolt flown by Capt. Walsh from the 406th Fighter Group, 9th Air Force on a ground attack mission. (U.S. Air Force photo) “
cool! a plane flying right out of the explosion just like in the movies!
WWII sea forts in the river Thames
More pictures at the original article on boston.com