Sunday, July 13, 2008

Bringing untold misery especially abroad

Writing at Freedom Daily (a libertarian journal of essays) Sheldon Richman makes an obvious point that I hadn't considered before. Call me very slow on the uptake. VERY slow.

It is widely, if implicitly, believed that whenever an American joins the armed forces — and especially when he goes off to war — he’s serving his country. But this assumption cannot withstand historical scrutiny. Wars are things that presidents, their advisors, and patrons engage in for political-economic-ideological purposes. Rarely do they have anything to do with the public’s security. ... When right-wing radio talk-show hosts gush to a military caller, “Thank you for your service to our country,” it should be translated to, “Thank you for your service to President Bush, Vice President Cheney, a coterie of neoconservative intellectuals, [AIPAC, the Zionist government of Israel, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrup Grumman, General Dynamics, Raethon, Exxon Mobil, MIT, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation, Honeywell International, General Electric, Fedex, Pepsico, Harris Corporation, Dell, Booz Allen Hamilton, Cardinal Health, EDS, Honeywell, Humana, IBM, Oskosh Truck Corp, Proctor & Gamble, Rolls Royce Group PLC, Triwest Healthcare Alliance Co, Tyson Foods, Public Warehousing Company, ITT Corporation, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, - MG] and Halliburton.” The knee-jerk homage paid to people who ... go off to fight wars whenever a president embroils the country in one is a sign of a failure to think. Such failure has brought untold misery both here and especially abroad.