Costs of War

Click here to go to the excellent Costs of War website

The costs have been overwhelming, demoralizing, devastating. Is this what we want to continue? Further enriching bloated military contractors and the politicians they buy? We are an empire that is wreaking havoc and destruction at home and abroad. And not just with guns. We are exacerbating climate change, and that means the destruction is extended to the entire world. Most americans are fine with this. Many are ignorant, many are willfully ignorant. Many shrug their shoulders and say, what can I do? There are a relative few of us who know what’s happening and do what we can, but the disconnect is deep. We have now had a few generations since the end of WWII. In that time a propaganda effort has been unleashed on the u.s. unlike any that has ever existed in history. Around the election of reagan, a class war was waged and then eventually won by the right. The left – and all working people – lost, and today the right continues to fight harder than ever. A scourge of corporate led neoliberalism has infected the world, corrupting and privatizing everything public – and making the public pay for the privilege of getting ripped off and impoverished. More people are more insecure in every aspect of their lives, but many are doing just fine and they do not want to hear it. What is “it”? Any facts that threaten to intrude on their lives. If they are not comfortable, they are filled with stress and anxiety. They are demoralized and feel helpless, powerless. And they don’t want to hear “it” either. That being said, millions of people marched all over the country to “raise awareness” about climate change. And there are still a lot of well-meaning americans. But what does that really mean? We haven’t seen anti-war protests that big since before the start of the last Iraq war. Will we see any anti-war protests this time around? Do people realize “we” are at war, again. Or more accurately, “we” are starting another war while “we” are at war…

Historians like to say this is a young country. They also like to say this is a great experiment. Well, it is time to grow up and it’s time to admit the experiment failed. It should have been obvious when they began the experiment with genocide and slavery, but ideology and greed pushed any real thoughts of humanity to the side. Now it ends with record inequality, a de facto aparthied system, de facto slaves making our goods in horrific conditions out of our sight, endless war, militarized police forces beating and killing the people they’re supposed to serve and protect, unregulated corporations killing and robbing people in every way imaginable, a venal political system, venal institutions, and an average american who is overworked, ignorant, drugged, propagandized, alienated, unhappy, depressed, anxious, and losing more of their humanity by the day. I officially call the experiment a failure. While I’m at it, I officially call capitalism a failure too. Time to start again. Of course the powers that be won’t let us quit the experiment. They think it’s such a success the whole world should follow in their footsteps.

Sorry, no words of hope this evening. Time to grow up america.