There is no better introduction to the militarism and callousness of the Trump era than the budget proposal for 2018. Much has been written about the miserly cuts to Meals on Wheels, housing aid, and other community assistance, but it’s just as important to examine the unjustified and unnecessary increases in defense spending. The Trump budget is clearly designed to enable another cycle of militarized national security policy and, in the words of Steve Bannon, to “deconstruct the administrative state.”
In April 1953, soon after the death of Joseph Stalin, President Dwight D. Eisenhower gave his “cross of Iron” speech, warning against “destroying from within what you are trying to defend from without.” Eisenhower wanted to avoid the enormous domestic price that would accompany unwarranted military spending. And military spending, he emphasized, meant “spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.” This is exactly what Trump is calling for in a federal budget that takes direct aim at scientific and medical research, the endowments for the arts and humanities, and the block grants for food and housing support. Even the Department of Energy’s tiny program to help insulate the houses of the poor would be eliminated.
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Two Wars, Five Losing Nations
The United States, complicit in Israel’s genocidal actions and sending conflicting signals regarding Ukraine and Gaza, is also losing in terms of influence and standing. The international community understands the hypocrisy of the Biden administration that condemns the terrorism of Russia but allows the terrorism of Israel. The United States has been Israel’s political shield on the global stage for the past 75 years. A New York Times editorial on Monday continued to support Biden’s most recent veto of a Security Council resolution calling for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza.
CIA’s Torture and Abuse: America’s Shame!
Lawrence Wright, the special counsel who investigated the Iran-contra scandal, concluded that the “failure to punish governmental lawbreakers feeds the perception that public officials are not wholly accountable for their actions. It also may lead the public to believe that no real wrongdoing took place.” This certainly applies to all those involved in CIA’s torture program.