Fed up with ongoing wars depleting innocent lives and the U.S. Treasury, more than a thousand women marched on the Pentagon on Sunday to declare their opposition to the continuing slaughter.
By Joe Lauria
Special to Consortium News
About 1,500 women and allied men marched on the Pentagon on Sunday to demand an end to perpetual war and the funding of education, health care and other social needs instead.
Stopping U.S. military involvement in Syria and Yemen and closing U.S. military bases around the world were among the demands voiced by the protestors who set out from Pentagon City and marched to the seat of American military power along a one-mile route.
With the Pentagon in the background, the protestors shouted slogans and waved signs calling for, “No More War.”
Walter Teague, an activist, spoke of taking part in the mass protest of 35,000 people against the Vietnam War that converged on the Pentagon building on October 21, 1967. That was 51 years ago to the day of Sunday’s women’s march, which took place after five more decades of American wars. In 1967 one could walk right up to the Pentagon’s front door, unlike now when the building is fenced off on all sides, hundreds of yards from the public.
And unlike militarized police in heavy armor on guard at mass demonstrations these days, those 1967 protestors were confronted by military police wearing only helmets and carrying a single M-16 rifle. (Though there were 6,000 armed troops inside the building.) The only police present on Sunday were those who escorted the protestors through the gates.
Among the speakers on a stage set up in a Pentagon parking lot, with the five-sided war headquarters in the background, was Jill Stein, the 2016 Green Party candidate for president. Stein told the crowd: “There’s not a lot of democracy going on out there because they’ve got the new McCarthyism going … The era of censorship, of warmongering and of political suppression is back big time.”
“Just because there’s radio silence out there doesn’t mean there isn’t a rebellion in full swing. You’ve got to go to the communities to see it. Do you know why our communities are crumbling? Because our tax dollars are going over there,” she said pointing to the Pentagon.
Last tax day Americans paid an average $3,400 each “to keep that thing doing what it’s doing,” said Stein, gesturing to the building. “While we were digging deep for the Pentagon … $80 of the average taxpayer went to support social programs and $40” to support the Environmental Protection Agency.
The march was organized for the 51st anniversary of 1967 by Cindy Sheehan, who lost her son in the invasion of Iraq and became a national figure when she camped out in front of George W. Bush’s Texas ranch in protest of the illegal war.
(Photos by Joe Lauria).
I’m English and disgusted by not only the British war machine, but also the US war machine and it is truly heartening to see some Americans with a true heart and a rational head standing up for what is so obviously right. Come on the rest of America, wake up!
#JillStein rightly condemned the “bipartisan backing of the War Machine.” Resist #PerpetualWar, Amigos, by supporting/sharing LCfor911.org. Ours isn’t a “Fight,” rather a Longstanding and adamantly non-violent Struggle for Social Justice.
Correction: Those are M-14 rifles, not M-16 rifles in the 1967 image.
A thousand times too few. Perhaps a seed, let’s hope.
Until we have a massive movement of people against war, like decades ago, nothing will change. The money being created by the MIC is too important. This government never consider giving up the arms and munitions industries. The military industrial complex will never retreat.
I am an unabashed activist and have been marching and organizing since the ” No Nukes” movement of the 1970s. I was too young to be part of the Vietnam protests and those of the original civil rights movement, but I am very much of the Vietnam War generation and am very much imbued and aware of the history of those times, and that of all of the civil rights pioneers.
All of today’s activists – and hopefully those to follow us – owe a tremendous debt to those who preceded us… just as ALL feminists and female activists owe a debt to the Suffragettes who fought for the vote, just as many of us are still fighting for respect, equality, reproductive justice, political representation, LGBTQI issues, etc., as well the rights for blacks, Latinas and indigenous peoples.
I feel it’s important to stress that this was the “WOMEN’S March Against the Pentagon” yet the majority of comments here seem to be from men. It is crucial to look at how much of this war machine, US imperialism and empire, and much the corporate and governmental structures – and that includes the mainstream media empire, too – are rooted in male patriarchy and control.
That is a BIG part of our protest!!!
Yes, there were lots of men at our protest and allied with us!!
We certainly welcome WOKE men to join with us to to fight this patriarchal system that is at the crux of much of what is SO wrong and lethal in this world – where we DESTROY more than we NURTURE, and obsess more about PROFITS than what SUSTAINS.
As all of the other WOMEN’S MARCHES have shown, there is a mighty force of women – many of us empowered by our OUTRAGE – and even moral disgust – by the excesses and utter tonedeafness of the current administration and present day decrepit GOP – further inflamed by the Kavanaugh debacle (and reliving of the previous Clarence Thomas hearings angst).
We do believe that it is more than time to unleash the power of women (and youth, – such as in the inspiring example of the Parkland students) as a MIGHTY force for change!!
The Women’s March Against the Pentagon was a powerful event – in passion and spirit – more than in numbers. I have been part of marches of all kinds and sizes and sometimes some of smaller yet vigorous mobilizations can be the most inspiring – especially to organizing further actions.
It is unfortunate that more Democratic women (and men) did not feel impelled to join with this march, but maybe that is part of the problem.
Too many have pinned their hopes on an establishment Democratic Party, that is too much a part of what is wrong with the system – including an ingrained war mentality – to be able to, or willing, to CHANGE anything.
There were Gold Star fathers who also protested the loss of their sons in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it was Cindy Sheehan who caught the world’s attention, along with much of the media, with her founding of Camp Casey in memory of her son. It was she who helped galvanize the antiwar movement, and activists like myself, with her simple cause of wanting an answer from George W. Bush… “For What Noble Cause” did her son Casey and so many others die??
It is a question we are still asking – so many years of lost lives, and countless dollar and resources squandered – about today’s wars.
And we will continue to ask… And speak out… And struggle for a better, saner, more humane world.
Welcome aboard, Diane. And for Pete’s sake don’t hold back. :-) We here at CN can take a punch or two when needed.
Again, I must refer to the Occupy movement. Why? Because it was the last protest movement that literally scared the crap out of the establishment, and by the way changed the national conversation on wealth inequality. Their original focus resonated across the political spectrum (all except the top 1% anyway), and Occupy camps were springing up like mushrooms all across the nation. Soon they allowed their message to become diluted, and this created openings for division and infiltration. That said, if a protest wished to have any effectiveness, I believe they must pick ‘one’ topic (or blatant injustice) and hammer away at it. If it resonates with the public it will grow into a powerful movement.
Diane, Please do not blur the Women’s March On The Pentagon with the pink pussy hat Get Out The Vote anti-Trump marches choreographed and funded by the DNC and their toadies. That is NOT us and never will be.
Previous women’s marches to ours had NOTHING to say about war and that is what caused us to organize against it. We were told:
“Cindy [Sheehan], we know that war is your issue. But until all women are free, we cannot address war.”
What she meant was bourgeois, privileged Democrat white women want to be free of Trump.
Ours has been from the start a movement organized by women that welcomes EVERYONE fatigued by war and its costs. Many men rallied with us, spoke and in fact sit on our Advisory Committee. We are INclusive, not EXclusive as you erroneously suggest.
We are entirely NON PARTISAN having recognized the total corruption of both parties- working pretty much as one entity. Obama inherited 2 wars from Bush 2 and bequeathed 7 on Trump. Who knows how many Trump will pass on?
Thanks for letting me clear up some of those pesky details.
I prefer to distinguish feminine from gender, as in women only. As such this march and Jill Stein’s words resonate with me, a male who embraces his feminine chromosome.
If it’s all about gender we could all mindlessly support the policies of Thatcher, and the warmongering of HRC.
I also see this as an answer to the DNC orchestrated marches post Trump inauguration. That’s a good beginning. Btw where was Code Pink?
Code Pink was there.
Thanks for this valuable clarification. Cindy Sheehan is a genuine hero of our time and was used and abused by the Democrats and the pink hat crowd. For this and many other reasons, men and women alike must build a movement independent of these phonies.
God bless you all!
Tom Laney, 501st Parachute Infantry, 82nd Airborne Division Association
Thank you Tom Laney. Check out our website: marchonpentagon.com
Thank you. Keep up the good work. This sort of protest never gets into our public media.
I don’t care if it may have been an exercise in futility , my hat’s off to every one of those rare specimens of truly decent humanity who participated in that march.
We gotta face facts folks:
The biggest anti-war movement in U.S. history was during the 60’s.
But it didn’t stop the war against Viet-Nam. The war was stopped because of draftees resisting the military in Viet-Nam. Troops refused to go on combat patrol, and fragged NCOs and officers who tried to force them into combat. So the military knew the game was over, pulled out, and rebuilt the military using volunteer mercenaries and high tech killing machines.
The largest, world-wide, anti-war protest was pre-Iraq, but we got Iraq anyway.
Cindy initiated an anti-war movement at Camp Casey, at the Bush ranch near Crawford Texas. It felt like the start of another sixties movement, but alas, Obama et al. put the kabash on Cindy, as well as the Occupy Movement, Standing Rock, etc.
There have been a gazillion ”peace” organizations over the years, but the war-makers and their supporters have all the power, money and influence to own the two major political parties and the propaganda machine to manufacture consent from voters.
There’s a 99% chance we’re going to lose most of the human species to nuclear war or climate change – but we will fight on to the bitter end, not because we will save our species, but because it’s the right way to go out with our boots on.
Just like with any heroic ”last stand” – damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.
The marches and protests against the war in Vietnam did not stop the war in Vietnam but it certainly contributed it, starting with Johnson fearful of attending the 1968 Democratic convention and deciding not to run for re-election. They certainly worried Richard Nixon who was considering dropping a nuclear bomb on Vietnam.
There were many protests that one doesn’t read about that had an impact such as the one in the SF Bay area when all the high schools and middle schools in the SF, Oakland area and down the peninsula organized a walk out on their own and it required every kind of cop from all over the area who were not allowed to call in sick to occupy the campuses. I have never seen a word about that event in any book but as a photographer I went down to San Mateo highschool where an SF meter cop who I knew (and would ticket every car he could that had a Reagn sticker) and had told me he would never take part in putting down a protest standing tall with a club across his chest. When he saw pointing my camera at him, he said he had tried to call in sick but they needed every man on the force.
When Nixon ended the draft in 71, it took all the air out of the movement and despite one large protest before the Iraq war with some of the same folk, older and slower, it was over and Obama provided its last rites.
National marches on Washington need weeks of planning, outreach and publicity and the right timing to be successful.
Hi Jeff. You’re right…that is why Cindy and I began organizing back in January. This was a 100% completely bottom up grassroots action that was done on the cheap. Ours is a principled movement, not just a one off like the pink hatted Get Out The Vote for Dems so-called ‘women’s marches’ that say NOTHING about war and the preparations for war.
We are not new to this business of organizing protests and demonstrations. The October 20-21 weekend workshops, march and rally are only the beginning.
We are the NON PARTISAN movement against the BI PARTISAN war machine. Our common enemy.
National Co-Director and Boston Organizer
Women’s March On The Pentagon 2018
Certainly you’re right. The anti-war movement from the left has no chance since the country has moved way to the right since the 70s with no end in sight. There is hope, however, from the anti-war right which seems more numerous and important. That’s not happened since the 1940s. Still, the bottom line in all this is that we Americans are a deeply violent society that believes in coercion instinctively it seems. On a personal level I ass many people moving slightly away from that notion but we’ll see if it sticks. Certainly the propaganda organs always support war and coercion both foreign and domestic and that’s not going to change.
Labled like left and right are meaningless today. Virtually all of the left’s pundits praised Trump after he ordered the air strikes on Syria for finally being presidential after constantly condeming his every move prior. Then calling him a traitor for meeting with Putin. Thank God their are a few brave women to still carry the torch for peace. Sad part is the Democratic leadership won’t give them the time of day
A pitifully small turnout due to the ridiculous dogmatic politics of the Women’s March on the Pentagon. Three weeks before the American people can strike a powerful blow against Trump in the midterm elections, the organizers called for people not to vote for Democrats, thus playing into Trump’s game plan. How foolish!
Your arrogance and lack of knowledge about our movement makes your comments sad and petty. Hide and watch! Ours was NEVER about Trump. Trump is a bit player in the longest running ‘show’ in history- the US Military Machine. Were you at the rally? Have you been following us? If so- you know what you say is untrue. Ours is a movement against the BI PARTISAN WAR MACHINE. Get with the program. We actually couldn’t care less who wins…as long as this dishonest bipartisan onslaught continues, it doesn’t matter because neither CON gress nor the president is ‘in charge’. It’s the MIC full on.
“We don’t count collateral damage” according to US military. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi, Afghan, Libya, Yemen,and Syrian women, babes, and in between, as well as sacred pooches blown into buzzard bait, small potatoes to the stolen trillion dollars from enslaved future Americans to line the filthy pockets of the military industrial vermin, who have spent a trillion a year, added to the national debt since Bush jr decided to massacre small, oil rich nations. Wars are fought between equals. Goliaths slaughtering the defenseless are blood thirsty massacres. Blowing people into shreds is evil enough, but than to target their water, electric, sewage plants as well as hospitals is surely demonic. People who cannot tell the difference between the forces of gravity and controlled demolition are easy duped to believe anything the ruling class spews out, no matter how ridiculous or unnatural or perverted.
“Bush jr decided to massacre small, oil rich nations.” What about Reagan in Granada and Bush Sr. in Panama? Or Alabama under Jackson? Or Hawaii. Or many others we could mention.
Thanks to all who take time to read these many messages, and to act to carry on with our struggle for a peace-filled Planet befor the climate is forced to do its work of change into harmony instead of destruction of our Sacred Home.
Better coverage of this windy , blustering day in 2018, 51 years later. The security state ( 9-11’s real objective) was clearly in place and in readiness, despite to totally peaceful nature of the activists gathered to expose and oppose war-making in this monstrosity built in the time of FDR when the WMD were being invented as of 1943 onward – and still in production as fuel for useless highly enriched uranium at Oak Ridge and Los Alamos still to today!
I think a March on the Pentagon was long overdue…
Our government has “overspent” 16 trillion dollars of taxpayer money…. in just a mere 18 years….
Quadrupling our ENTIRE national debt from 5.6 trillion in 2000…to a whopping 21.7 trillion is 2018.
Where is the accountability ?
Where did all the money go ?
There has not been one SINGLE audit of the pentagon during the entire time.
Why not ?.
There should be another “march”, very soon..a “real” one..It should include “everybody”, not just women…and the organizers should get the word out months in advance..on social media..websites ..everywhere…..So ALL Americans knows about it, and have time to PLAN for it.
I would not be surprised if you found (at least)150 million strong in attendance (maybe more) …all taking time off from work, and school, …….to raise their patriots yell…”NO taxation WITHOUT representation!”
The American people keep voting in leaders who promise “peace”… but just end up walking the same old “perpetual war” tune, completely bankrupting the nation in the process.
Just provide the People the forum, give them PLENTY of heads up…and they will be there…. in “droves”!
I know I will be.
There was 3 ongoing audits, one in one of the 9/11 towes, one in building 7, and one in the Pentagon which was taken out by a cruise missile. But which of the 500 federal reps dares to querion? Thousands of bone slivers, wafted into roof tops have been and still being found. What force can do such a thing in ten seconds? No one dares to ask. We live in a conquered nation. Not likely to change when 80% of screen time is spent on porn. Not likely that anyone will demand to know just who is flooding all media “perverting the nations” with vile porn, the new “opiate of the masses”.
Gee, someone noticed how Bush jr almost doubled the Nat. debt from 5.7 trillion to 11 trillion, Obama did the same, from 11 to 20 trillion, and now Trump will ape his predecessors and go for 40 trillion in two terms? Does his increase of the military budget offer a clue?
This rally and march did not JUST include women. It was called Women’s March because women organized it. We have many men on our Advisory Committee. Many men spoke at the event and marched with us, conducted workshops and supported us. Why always these assumptions instead of actually learning the facts?
We couldn’t ‘give people a head’s up’ because CORPORATE media totally ignored us. We have been promoting and organizing since January 2018! We held planning meetings around the country. We all did numerous interviews with alternate media such as RT, Mint Press, KPFA, etc., etc.
Please join our newsletter list so you can be alert to our next action(s). See website below.
You have my full approval and support. Keep talking it up!
Nice to see hand made signs and No Celebrities..for a change. There’s just something about the “spontaneous” multi-cities Protest marches with websites and logos ..seems phony to me
Thanks to Joe Lauria for showing up and documenting the WMOP. I was there and am surprised to be in one of his photos. We all know that 1,500 people is not a massive march, but it’s a start. As many here have expressed, in this oppressive political environment with the corporate media on lock down regarding covering any event that dares challenge empire, it is going to be difficult to convince people to turn out for something they may feel doesn’t really accomplish much.
Unless you’ve been directly involved with this march which I have, you probably don’t know that this was meant as a kick off to restart the antiwar movement. This was not a one off. The planning for the next action will begin as soon as Cindy has had a well deserved short break.
John Wright, it did not go unnoticed that there were infiltrators. In fact, there were some others I’m not at liberty to discuss at this point, but please know that that issue will be dealt with.
Please don’t write this march and movement off yet. We have only just begun to fight. We can use all the help we can get.
Again, thank you to Joe Lauria and Consortium News for the coverage. Wish I had had the chance to meet you Joe. I did get to meet Ray though. It was an honor.
If “Blessed are the peacemakers”, then surely damned are the war monger.
Lois Gagnon –
I hope that you and yours are well.
As a dedicated pacifist for over 40 years I really wish I could’ve been there. I also really enjoy working with both Cindy Sheehan and Jill Stein, two of my favorite modern American patriots. Hopefully, I can come out for the next one and bring a few thousand folks from the west coast with me…smile.
I am all for real movements and marches do help boost morale. That any thinking person would not want to be part of a peace movement beggars belief, so we do have a lot of educating to do, along with careful listening so we can craft our message and draw people back to their basic humanity.
Seriously rethinking our economic relationships is a big part of any peace movement as the US has been nearly totally converted to a permanent war economy with crushing debt service. We need to move to a cooperative form of sustainable capitalism which has been an interest of mine for over 30 years.
Thanks for the supportive comments John. I too hope you can come east for the next one and bring a few thousand with you. We need to build this movement as quickly as we can.
And your right that it all comes down to economic relationships. The old colonialist ways must be defeated if we are to survive as a species. As long as war is a business model, we have no chance.
Peace and good health to you and yours as well.
Infiltrators at a march are as unavoidable as ants at a picnic. I’ve seen it myself in every march I was ever in, starting in 1967.If anything, it should reassure the participants that their cause is important.
THANKS FOR THE GREAT PIECE & PHOTOS, JOE!
Sorry I missed it…since I can’t be in DC until next week.
thanks. nice photos
Very good. Not a coincidence you didn’t see any of that on corporate Zionist CIA/Pentagon controlled ABC, CBS, FOX, CNN and MSNBC.
As a Veteran For Peace, it was my obligation and duty to participate with women against war and for peace and social justice throughout the world!
Thanks for your participation John!
i’m fully in support of this “WOmen March on the Pentagon” against all the imperialist wars. The taxpayers money should go to education, health, jobs, housing. Amandla to the women who organised this march!
Thanks for the coverage of this march, Mr. Lauria. I wish I could have been there.
Some random comments:
The genesis of this march was because Cindy Sheehan went to the leaders of several other women’s groups and asked them to join her in a march for peace. Their response to her was “No, Cindy, peace is YOUR issue.” This goes a long way in describing the mind field that now pervades much of the American populace, including allegedly “progressive” women leaders. Isn’t peace everyone’s issue? Shouldn’t everyone want peace and look for ways to create a more peaceful world? Doesn’t the perpetual war machine drain precious resources away from addressing all the issues these leaders care about?
I’m very curious to know how much involvement the ANSWER “coalition” had with this march. Having tried to work with them on the west coast and gone to their organizational meetings, I have a good understanding of their modus operandi. The Becker brothers, who run ANSWER on both coasts, are very effective gatekeepers and have carefully and cleverly insinuated themselves into the peace/justice movement and disabled it for the most part. That there were only 1500 people in this march is no surprise to me.
Regarding Iraq, September 11th and Chris Hedges….The heinous crime of September 11, 2001 was an obvious false flag. Iraq had nothing to do with it. Bin Laden and his band of CIA/Mossad/GID/MI6 manufactured terrorists were patsies. Chris Hedges is a very intelligent man and I’m sure he knows it was a false flag. He also knows that the September 11th false flag is a permanent BIG LIE and the third rail in American public life and thus stays within the bounds of acceptable discourse on that particular subject to not lose his book deals and what little audience he still has. Plus, uncle Noam says there’s nothing there. My understanding is that a fellow journalist asked him to interview an allegedly credible source in the middle east who told him what turned out to be a bunch of nonsense, including the fictitious connections between Iraq, al Qaeda and the September 11th false flag. The “credible source” turned out to be a total fraud steered his way by Ahmed Chalabi, an opportunist and tool for the Deep State.
As for the coming election, and US elections in general…Someone once said that if elections changed anything, they would be illegal.
The US electoral process is totally corrupt and can be easily manipulated in both direct and indirect ways. The only way to change this is for the American people to collectively shut the country down and demand real change…yes, a general strike… coupled with demands for actual transparency, real accountability, verifiable paper ballots and ranked choice voting. Ranked choice voting is how we evolve our politics from the present false duopoly to a true multiparty system and eventually perhaps, to some kind of direct parliamentary system where our elected representatives frame the issues, provide a number of solutions and the masses vote on said solutions.
The US also needs to start producing what it consumes and rapidly begin consuming much less. Needs, not wants, must drive our choices going forward.
Time to go work on the farm ….be well, brothers and sisters…and buy gold if you are able..the USD is crashing soon…
The truth shall set us free.
LOVE is the only way forward.
“The Becker brothers, who run ANSWER on both coasts, are very effective gatekeepers and have carefully and cleverly insinuated themselves into the peace/justice movement and disabled it for the most part.” True and they have been taking the air out of the room for years.
Re 9/11, it has become not only virtually but literally impossible for any public figure to openly challenge the “offfical narrarive” of 9/11 because to do so is then to “own it,” by that I mean, it is a subject about which a public figure just can’t say, “I think it was inside job” or the “official story was a lie,” or “Bldg 7 proves it wasn’t planes that brought down the WTC” without being required to stop everything else and do the research in order to defend your position.
This was made even more difficult by the decision of the government, following the outlines of a paper written by Cass Sunstein, to infiltrate the truth movement and introduce a number of ridiculous theories designed to discredit the movement which it succeeded in doing. Of course, employing the nation’s Chief Gatekeeper, Noam Chomsky to weigh in against finding the truth was essential.
I think if a group of three or more credible public figures held a press conference and calmly stated that the crime of September 11th was a false flag and then methodically laid out the readily available information that clearly proves it to be a false flag it would break through the unstated taboo of talking about it. Polls have shown that 30% of Americans KNOW it was a false flag and another 30% strongly suspect it was. Much of the corporate media knows it was a false flag, their bosses just prohibit any position other than the slowly evolving scenario that the Saudis helped facilitate it (and there were a few key Saudis involved, so that makes it easy to push that limited hangout).
As long as that BIG LIE continues, many will suspect the corporate media and those who inhabit it of being untrustworthy and pushing “Fake News”…the cover up of the September 11th false flag is the mother of all Fake News stories, after all.
As for Cass Sunstein…he’s the one who is epistemologically crippled, as well as morally and ethically bankrupt.
Obama was asked point blank on video about WTC 7 and said ” I know all about it and there’s nothing there”.
Sounds like you have had experience with the Becker brothers….
Jeff–shouldn’t the research be prior to the “position” anyway. It’s not that difficult. There are many quality books and a few good websites and documentaries devoted to the subject. If I was a public figure who had done my homework and reached conclusive positions on motives (several birds killed with a single stone actually), means, and the falsity of the “official” explanation–and was of a mind to publicly challenge that explanation–well then, I would get my ducks in a row before doing so. Nothing impossible about that.
Yeah, that Sunstein guy is a trip–married to Samantha Power by the way. Philip Zelikow, the myth maker, even more so.
One thing I wish people would stop doing is referring to Building 7 as “the smoking gun” or “proof” planes didn’t bring down 1 & 2. The official explanation for the “collapse” of 1 & 2 is no less fantastical because of the so-called collapse of 7. The utter pulverisation of those massive structures (not to mention the speed and symmetry of their destruction) is far beyond what a structural failure due to heat and gravity would look like and requires far more energy than a “collapse” would produce.
I take issue with John Chuckman again when he suggests that “heard of” is not the same as join etc. The fact remains is that Jill Steins name was on the ballot paper (or whatever system of voting you have) so anyone and everyone could vote for her. A simple X on the ballot form beside her name COSTS NOTHING! The truth is people really are like sheep and they heard together by supporting their usual party and don’t have the initiative or the courage to try something new. It would be remarkable indeed if there were many Americans who did not know that Jill Stein was a presidential candidate. Chuckman is of course, quite right when he says money buys influence, but perhaps that’s the trouble, the people are just too easily influenced by glitz and razzmatazz.
Ooo-rah, ladies. Go for it!
Sadly, it will make no difference.
I remember it as sometime in 1969 that I realized nothing anybody did was going to have any real impact because the US was being run by the US military and/or their lackeys. The lackeys are the congresscritters (but not necessarily all of them) that we send to Washington. Thanx to the legal structure, we don’t really get a democratic choice. We get a choice of the same thing. Voting today is mostly a choice between Pinot Noir and Burgundy or between Chablis and Chardonnay. In recent decades we had Obama who allegedly was going to be different. But he turned out to be just another DINO or Republican lite who, as a community organizer, couldn’t lead his way out of a grocery store. The Current Occupant promised to get us out of all these wars and global occupations but he’s proven to be naught but a grifter and carnival barker who can only get done what he can do on his own. Basically, your average small business owner.
This last election was interesting because we actually had 4 candidates although you’d be forgiven if you didn’t realize that since two of them didn’t get into the national debate which is, of course, controlled by the Mainstream Media. You could hear Ms. Stein and Mr. Johnson debate but you had to catch that on that notorious propaganda outlet RT. Speaking of Russia, I find it interesting that in the 2018 Russian election, they had 8 people running for the office of the President. All 8 could participate in the televised debate they had although Mr. Putin, the run away best seller, declined to participate. The US would have a shot at being something other than a “flawed” democracy if we had a field of candidates that size. The other educational spot came when Mr. Putin gave an interview to Megyn Kelley. He almost certainly did this for political advantage in Russia but what came next is instructive for American democracy. The entire interview was broadcast on Russian TV and you can see it on that notorious propaganda outlet RT but you can’t on American media. The US broadcast a James O’Keefe style edited version of the interview which was deliberately done to leave a distorted impression of both Mr. Putin and Ms. Kelley.
Way to go for national and world peace! Time to stop empire building! Time to stop selling war to the world! Time to become truly
a democratic country of peace builders!
Cindy Sheehan, that’s a blast from the past. What a woman.
And how about: “America, collectively, simply does not care that its government is now in the full-time killing business.”
That’s like the bloggers who call the good American people “sheeple” when caring wouldn’t count if it did exist. So don’t blame the citizens.
As for the march, been there, done that. It’s a complete waste of time when the basic problem is that the USA is not any kind of democracy. The people never have a say regarding any government policy strategy or decision either domestic of foreign. None, Nada. Zip. Forget it.
So why should they care?
As for voting, forget that. There are more non-voters than there are in either of the two parties, tweedle-dum and tweedle-dee (a Naderism). Voting has zero effect on anything to do with “the continuing slaughter.”
I agree that voting is useless when the only options are war loving murderers. I also agree that blaming the citizens of the most propagandized nation on Earth is not the answer either. However I disagree when you say that marches are useless. Marches offer the opportunity to demonstrate solidarity among people in the movement struggling for change, allow radical groups to reach out to people and initiate deeper political education. It is obviously not the only aspect of the work that needs to be done but it is a site of struggle that shouldn’t be written off.
All the best,
Have you marched? And if so do you believe you accomplished anything?
I have, and I do. Er… General.
Can anyone name a country on planet Earth where the poor (or even the middle classes) are in charge of the government?
Governments cannot save us now – they have been devoured by superwealth.
Only a grassroots growth in awareness, maturity, realism, sobriety, practicality, simple good sense in the peoples can drive events to peace and safety. Education of the people alone can do what must be done. The pseudoscience taught in university econ departments has filled heads with garbage thinking about money, work, and wealth. If you think it is a lot of work to spread the truth that will set humanity free, just compare to the amount of work coming down the pike if we DON’T launch the campaign for outlawing overfortunes injustice.
Like John Chuckman, I would never wish to demean or diminish those who oppose the psychopathological militarism of taxing and cannonfoddering one populace to take the lives and fortunes of another in the banksters’ wars. That said, I propose a deep reconsideration of what is needed to get a desired result in Reality.
When you are not coming from a position of power, you cannot make demands you can only make requests. Hold a gun to my head and you can demand I turn over my money. Hold a sign saying ‘give me your money please’ and you are *really* only begging.
It sounds counterintuitive at first I know, but consider: If you want the right to be free from war, protesting may send exactly the wrong message to everyone.
Protesting sends the message that it is right to beg wealthpower giants for our rights, it is good to beg wealthpower giants for our rights, it is necessary to beg wealthpower giants for our rights – and that it will always be right and good and necessary to beg wealthpower giants for our rights.
The true reality is that it is NOT necessary, good, or right to erect wealthpower giants to have to beg our rights from.
The true reality is that there is no reason to allow overfortunes on this planet
and there is every reason NOT to.
There is no reason to allow the pursuit of unlimited fortunes on this planet and there is every reason NOT to.
There is no one on this planet who does not know that money is power. Stop standing by inert and letting the money concentrate and you stop the power concentrating. Stop the power concentrating and you get Democracy (means people-rule), you stop begging wealthpower giants for your rights…your futures…your safety, happiness, prosperity; your and your grandchildrens’ every good thing.
Economic justice = getting out of the pool of wealth the amount you put in by your own work, your own sacrifice of time and energies to working – no more and no less. Economic justice is the peaceful, lasting revolution you have been looking for. Economic justice is the non-negotiable price of human survival (ever since E=mc2 changed everything).
Our rights to be free from being made to trade the fruits of our labors for ever more lethal and costly weaponry, our rights to be free from being made to trade our children’s bright futures for participation in ruinous military adventurism, our rights to be free from being bankrupted by the utterly unsurvivable fraud of the power to issue our country’s credit having been given for no REASON to private banksters – – ALL of our rights – depend on a majority of humans receiving the education that allows them to see for themselves the big picture of our true reality…
Everybody is an expert. But first, they are critics.
Please be fair! I did not criticize any protesting person(s), I made a solid attempt to bring light not heat. My ‘criticism’ was carefully aimed at failure to strike the root. Striking the root is wisdom, is crucial to success. The root cause of wars: central banksters lending money to indebt countries and peoples for the sake of gaining wealth for themselves. The hand of the wealthpowerful ones who issue the nation’s credit/debt calls the shots on policy. Once again I tell you it is the pursuit of unlimited fortunes that causes wars. Wars are one of millions of very negative CONSEQUENCES of allowing overfortunes on planet Earth. Protesting consequences just leads people into hope fatigue when precious time and energies spent do not stop the consequence precisely because the root problem is left intact.
I will also dare mention that war isn’t even close to being the number one cause of death in the world.
22,000 children die each and every day due to poverty. 22,000. Each day. Every day.
My purpose is stop people being killed from EVERY consequence of allowing overwealth/underwealth overpower/underpower on this planet.
Humans must stop being myopic, must learn to see the big picture. It’s less work to strike the root and a much better chance of success…
Producing a documentary, Charles Lindbergh : Democracy and Dissent that highlights the three events that took place at the beginning of the first half of the 20th Century that has led America into becoming the welfare warfare state it is today.
It’s odd that there is no “Reply” button to Michael’s reply to John Chuckman – at least not on my screen. Michael’s comment caught me by surprise because that is a part of our long nightmare that I wasn’t aware of; I didn’t even know who Chris Hedges was at that time. So I searched and found David Corn’s article in Mother Jones that adequately explained the scam.
I knew from the beginning that the march to the illegal invasion of Iraq was a monstrous lie. What informed me? The “first” Gulf War, led by Pappa Bush bombed much of Iraq back into the stone age, and then almost 12yrs of sanctions and no-fly zone enforcement under Clinton, and of course the UN inspectors dismantling chem/bio facilities in Iraq. Not to mention that al Qaeda’s philosophy (disparate from the fact that they were a US proxy and creation) vilified all secular governance in the Mid East. All of Sadam’s despicable reign aside, Iraq was more secular and upwardly mobile than much of the rest of that region. In short, Sadam and his Iraqi government were not friends of Bin Laden and al Qaeda. It was Iraq’s secularism that drove the ire of KSA and all the other decrepit monarchies of the current alliance, and KSA influence also spurred junior’s war crime against Iraq.
I was in DC on that cold winter morning when 600,000 peace marchers were ignored by our corrupt government, as were the millions in total that were ignored outright by a bloodthirsty murderous cabal. That was a transformational moment for me. My first participation in a political rally, and my next to last. Most of the other marchers were Christian Socialists from NYC, an I shared a seat on the ride from Pa to DC with a Quaker (also from Ohio.)
Fast forward to today. Despite the very small percentage of US citizens that actually have recent military experience, there are an inordinate number of military veterans running for office. A few of them have been informed by their experience to reject the permanent war economy and hegemony/fear narrative of our official national discourse. Most of them though proudly support the illegal US war mongering. But, veteran or not, the vast majority of ALL US political candidates mouth the phrase “I support a strong military” by rote. None of those will even entertain the idea that our strong military has led to a society rife with civilizational cancer. There are only literally a handful of peace candidates, or elected representatives, and their sensibilities are purposely ignored.
The US populace and/or electorate is not completely asleep or blind. The 2006 midterm election was a nationwide electoral repudiation of Bush and the Iraq War. But the “opposition” party did nothing (“Impeachment is off the table”,) the war machine chugged on and was given more money and liberties, and another poser was elected by a desperate populace who proceeded to do… nothing, except continue and expand the carnage. We, the ordinary citizens of a thoroughly corrupted nation have no say in the direction of our national government and the blindly obedient vast military at their disposal. Advocating peace is a political death sentence. Trump finally and forever exposed the moral depravity of this nation: he won’t jeopardize an arms deal in the name of morality, ethics, or justice. History may not repeat, but it sure as hell rhymes.
Hedges was taken in by an info scam soon after 9/11, but was critic of the Iraq war and resigned from the Times.
Chris Hedges, on his most recent “On Cobtact” program (on RT)
” … investigative journalist Helen Buyniski exposes Jimmy Wales’ egalitarian Wikipedia as yet another tool of the ruling class.”
Yes, I stopped using Wikipedia after I discovered, while doing research one winter, that they were already compromised. Even subjects that were completely unrelated to politics were filled with misinformation. It really hits home when you check on subjects that you have real knowledge on and find that Wiki has it all wrong. I no longer trust their content for anything.
The fact remains the Hedges resigned from the Times over disagreement with their line on Iraq.
Didn’t you notice that Chris Hedges is actually the _host_ of On Contact on RT?
First of all just as the Democratic Party continually tries to milk what’s left of their image in the days of FDR despite being a major force in chiseling away at everything good that came from it ‘Mother Jones’ in reality, resembles very little of what it once was as well.
Plus if you want to read the lips of the Democratic Party apparatus then pay attention to that can of Corn (huge Russia-gate promoter) doing his job of poisoning the well of contrary opinions by attacks on people like Chris Hedges.
That wikipedia entry lists accusations against Chris Hedges that are very usable for mouthpieces like Corn, that is as long as you leave out the parts like THIS….
” Hedges noted that Ketcham based his allegations (plagiarism) on an unpublished manuscript which the latter man admitted he had never seen and passages that were actually footnoted or sourced. Hedges accused Ketcham and The New Republic (TNR) of malicious intent and character assassination. On the following day (June 17), The New Republic republished Hedges’ response along with Ketcham’s (and TNR’s) response to the counter-allegations made by Hedges.
The Washington Free Beacon reported The New York Times spokesman saying that it “did not have reason to believe Hedges plagiarized in his work for the paper” and had no plans to investigate Hedges for plagiarism. The American Prospect and Salon declined to publish Ketcham’s article, and The Nation Institute and Truthdig issued statements dismissing Ketcham’s allegations. ”
While you check out that wikipedia Chris Hedges notice the subjects of his books, his activism (with arrests), his lawsuit against the Obama administration.
In 2012, after the Obama Administration signed the National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, Hedges sued members of the U.S. government, claiming that section 1021 of the law unconstitutionally allowed presidential authority for indefinite detention without habeas corpus. He was later joined in the suit, Hedges v. Obama, by activists including Noam Chomsky and Daniel Ellsberg. In May 2012 Judge Katherine B. Forrest of the Southern District of New York ruled that the counter-terrorism provision of the NDAA is unconstitutional. The Obama administration appealed the decision and it was overturned. Hedges petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case, but the Supreme Court denied certiorari in April 2014.
But I admire his social work the most, and that is a long list but the following also stands out among them all, teaching in prison compared to the elite schools where he also taught.
Pulitzer Prize winner and Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges shares his experience teaching at a maximum security prison at a talk he gave for Truthdig in Los Angeles.
Chris Hedges on inequality in the United States –
Chris Hedges: The Global Culture of Violence: What Is The Path to Peace and Justice?
Ronnie, thanks for your defense of Chris Hedges. He is a thorn in the ass of the establishment, and has therefore been pushed to the margins of journalism to suffer in “outer darkness” with all the other truth-tellers. With his talent I’m sure it is not easy to be shunned by his profession, earning a living the best he can with books and speaking tours. But when in history have truth-tellers ever been rewarded by TPTB? Anyone who has followed his work can see that he is as solid as they come, passionate and uncompromising, like Isaiah crying in the wilderness.
Yes, Hedges was scammed; I didn’t mean to imply that he orchestrated the scam. I read his editorials regularly now and feel I understand him and his positions: there are damn few like him that are willing or courageous enough to continually expose the falseness of the American façade. I only occasionally read David Corn, and not often enough to judge whether he is merely a partisan hack. Regardless of Corn’s motives and sensibilities, the article in Mother Jones was an adequate run-down of HOW Hedges was scammed. I referred to it here merely to provide a reference to those like me, that may have missed that detail of this sorry history. The MJ article was near the top of the list resulting from my search, and that is the one I read.
It’s perfectly in keeping with the cynical skullduggery of our spooks and spies to gaslight a high-profile “lefty” to be an “unimpeachable” source of dis-information on the march to an illegal war. But that was even a lucky accident (for the war-mongers) as Hedges was sitting in as a favor to the PBS reporter who couldn’t attend that charade. Though I didn’t recognize Hedges name at the time I was absolutely aware that a vigorous campaign of mis and dis information was under way. Everything I’d observed from Desert Storm on, coupled with my possession and reading of the PNAC document informed me that a massive lie was underway and a deliberate crime against humanity was about to unfold. Chris Hedges for me is affirmation, not revelation. I don’t mean to denigrate or diminish Hedges voice; I need affirmation also.
Going back to the 2006 mid-term repudiation of Bush and the Iraq war. Review the timelines and the facts concerning the two AUMF’s passed jointly by the US Congress after 9/11. The first, on Sept 14, 2001 was a broad general authorization for what has been called “The War on Terror.” Barbara Lee was the only elected US pol (out of both chambers) that voted against it. The second, authorizing the illegal invasion (“How do you get a permit for a damned illegal act?” – Bones/Spock) of Iraq was passed thus: HoR – D’s, 82 yes, 129 no; Senate – D’s 29 yes, 21 no. Only 6 R’s in HoR voted no, and only a few R’s in the Senate. By 2006 no amount of propaganda could disguise, even to the hapless American public, that the whole thing was a massive fraud and a horrid human disaster. But both parties had become complicit in the crime. The D’s could not, would not impeach, because they would have to impeach themselves as well. And of course 2006 was the outbreak of the blue-dog epidemic. We’d also have to assume that there was still some scintilla of morality, ethics, or humanity left in the entrenched leadership of the D’s (review the list of D Senators voting yes,) instead of understanding that they are merely the D wing of the political arm of the MIC.
Vinnieoh, no worries. I think I reacted more to the Wiki references, which I’ve come to mistrust. For years I would use Wiki pages as a jumping off point, but now I rarely use them for any topic of investigation.
As for being scammed, well who among us can claim that we are immune to this? One of main reasons I visit CN now on a regular basis is because I’m sick to death of being scammed. I think Obama was the final nail in that coffin. Enjoyed both your comments, BTW.
Thank you for replying. Michael’s reply to John Chuckman took me by surprise because I really was unaware of that twist is this sorry debacle. Of course I sensed his (Michael’s) sarcasm or irony and not for a moment did I believe that Hedges helped promote this human catastrophe. Glad that we avoided animosity where none was intended or deserved. Vince in Ohio.
Thanks, Joe Lauria, for this report. MSM simply ignored the march, if reporting it at all, while a rally in Texas where Trump stumped for Cruz drew 18,000+ people, many driving miles and camping out ahead of that event. Go figure! Those were long-ago days when people came by thousands to protest Vietnam. Now many people working multiple part-time jobs are too dispirited to protest, many don’t know the extent of militarization of the US economy, where their tax dollars go. The Pentagon doesn’t even get audited. The warlords are in control, Trump is the mafia head.
Like Chuckman said, I am all in favor of anyone and everyone who takes the time and effort to protest against war.
It’s one thing if the Vikings show up in longboats on your beaches and there’s no alternative to the sword.Give me one and I’ll swing it to keep out the barbarians.
However, America’s wars are not like this. No one invades America. The country doesn’t need defending. Not on the epic $700 billion a year scale it doesn’t.
America’s wars are wars of choice. Of opportunity. The government sees an opportunity to take stuff from some brown or yellow people, and chooses to do it. Because they can. It’s murder, rape, and looting.
America does not have a Department of Defense. What we have is a Department of Offense.
Call it what it is. Empire. Conquest. Greed. Taking. Killing. There is nothing noble about it.
Michael, might you provide the article where you claim that Chris Hedges (and the NYT) “prove”and that Irag was involved in 911?
I do not recall ever reading such a thing, neither have I read (or heard) Chris Hedges write or say any such thing.in any article, book, or speech.
I would be most interested to have a link to something that appears totally contrary to what I have seen.
I await your response and the evidence which confirms what you claim to be so.
You will be waiting a long time DW because its absolutely untrue. Even George Bush accepted that Iraq wasn’t responsible for 9-11. The American public were brain washed into thinking it was Iraq by the media. That same media has brain washed much of the American public into thinking Russia got Trump elected. The average American (and we British) see our view of the world through the TV screen and not much else. If there was a serious, well balanced newspaper (and there isn’t) most people would never read it. lets face it, those of us who read Consortium news and other similar sites are as rare as hen’s teeth.
Well John, I should like to imagine that we represent at least one percent of the population, that we seek to engage others in thoughtful discussion while insisting that actual facts matter and that life and the planet, as well as a sane, sustainable, and humane society is possible, if we have the courage and imagine of developing compelling visions of such a society that might or may allow the many to shake off the learned (deliberately inculcated) helplessness and fearfulness that dominates most “Western” societies today.
Since the nineteen-sixties, the blatant trajectory toward vicious dominance, articulated by your Maggot Thatcher and our Ronald Reagan, some years later, to the tune of “Greed is Good”, and “Bring It On!”, all legitimized with the classic language of the Fallasious Argument, “You are either with us or against us!”, known as Argumentum ad baculum to the Romans, or Argument with a big stick, to those claiming to share the common language of English.
The purpose of that argument, which is a threat, is to end debate and discussion.
Too often, political discourse, has as its purpose, just that intent, for reason, tolerance, understanding, and any effort of intellectual rigor is out of fashion, as is nuance, or any willingness to actually listen, to actually hear or respect the concerns and insights of others.
I do not know how it is in your country, John, but here the “dumbing down” has been rather effective and, when coupled to the propensity for USians to see violence as solution, first, interim, and final, has created a most volitile mix of authoritarianism and “Full Spectrum Dominance” as official policy, here and abroad.
Indeed, many are gleefully anticipating, apparently, a Civil War, here.
Here, in a nation that has no real concept of war, of what our wars have done and do to others and to the planet.
Gore Vidal suggested that this is the United States of Amnesia, I suspect we may actually be well into Depravity and that only calamity or catastrophe of immense proportion might, just might, sway us from the madness of either nuclear confrontation or total environmental collapse.
I do think the people, generally, are not quite so bloodthirsty as the political, corporate, and military classes.
But the many are increasingly desperate and encouraged to take that desperation out on each other.
I could not possibly be more in sympathy with the cause these marchers represent.
I wouldn’t want to demean or diminish them for any reason.
But I think the main thing a march like this one tells us about is an extremely unhappy fact.
1,500 people? My God that wouldn’t fill the auditorium of a big movie theater.
America, collectively, simply does not care that its government is now in the full-time killing business.
Which of course precludes so very many activities governments are supposed to be concerned with, from health care to building needed bridges.
The sad facts just reinforce my view of contemporary America as an extremely dangerous force in the world.
America’s government literally burns resources on wars, needless wars, and does next to nothing for and about the people it is supposed to govern, supposed to represent, and from whom it collects taxes to pay for the dark work that it is involved in.
There is a huge disconnect there between the American people and “their” government.
So, not only are American national elections close to a charade as to real choice – Trump versus Clinton? What a choice the plutocrats offer people – but the national government seems to enjoy virtually complete freedom to kill on a massive scale with unwarranted geopolitical wars, support tyrants also engaged in killing, men like the Saudi Crown Prince and Israel’s Netanyahu, and it even freely and openly conducts a program of extrajudicial killing on an industrial scale.
My God, there’s just no pretence anymore. America is about killing and bullying the planet, and America’s own citizens remain pretty well completely indifferent.
The basic structure and dynamics of a situation like this are extremely threatening for the entire world. America today much resembles the 1930s jack-booted states of Europe marching around to threaten everyone. The only difference now is that jack-boots have gone out of style.
I don’t agree that the American people didn’t have any other choice except Clinton and Trump. There were other candidates. As far as Americans not caring about what’s going on in their country goes, I suggest most of them have no real idea about the true nature of the wars the government is perpetuating because American media only gives them a sanitized version and the government version at that. Even citizens who are aware that all is not well would not go on demonstrations when they frequently see people on TV being brutalized by police thugs and being charged with some trumped-up charge for just being there. Understandably, the people are becoming afraid and cowed and even posting their views on the internet is now a risky business with meta data collection going on. The only time Americans see or hear about the horrors of American war action is when they hear it from the likes of whistle blowers like Snowden and look how that turned out!!
Sorry, but you haven’t thought about things enough.
Sure, there are always “other candidates,” so what?
Without money, they can reach no one.
They are like the sound of one hand clapping.
If you want to understand how American politics actually do work:
I live in the UK and even I have heard of Jill Stien of the green party! I suggest the only reason Trump won was because he had media coverage that other candidates could only dream of, although of course, it was all negative. Yes he had lots of money, but had the media not gone into a frenzy about his views etc he would not have won. The term “its the economy stupid” is no doubt apt, but term “its the media stupid” is also apt when it comes to exposure at election times. Its worth bearing in mind that over 50% of Americans still think Iraq and Saddam Hussein did 9-11
“Its worth bearing in mind that over 50% of Americans still think Iraq and Saddam Hussein did 9-11”.
Chris Hedges and the New York Times PROVED Iraq was involved in 9-11 (think they received Pulitzer prizes for their brilliant investigative journalism. Does the CIA decide those prizes too?)
And we are still in Iraq 17 years later, still looking for Weapons of Mass Destruction. Our neolib/ neocon think tanks, which shape and decide US foreign policy, tell us the WMD have been moved to Iran, so we’ll have to start looking there soon.
Yesterday, O Society includednseveral links in the Russia Did It! thread.
The first article described the difficulties that third parties have in the political arena of the US.
Effective control if the party system is in the hands of the legacy political parties, the Democrats and the Republicans, with the full force of law behind that control which places hoops, hurtles, and extreme hindrance in the path of third parties.
So it is not merely media coverage that obscures and denigrates other political parties, it is the process itself.
The system in place in your country is exemplary and most democratic in comparison.
I hope you might seek out O Society’s comment, which I comment on in that thread, as I find it impossible, at this time to provide you that link.
Compared to most other nations, access to the ballot, in the US, is extremely difficult and makes mock of even the pretense of democracy.
The history is little known but it is critical to understanding why voting in the US is less a right than a rite, an essentially meaningless ritual designed to confer legitimacy on a system quite devoid of honestly deserving any serious credibility whatever.
Again, rather naive.
“Heard of” is not the same thing as influencing, as reaching, as convincing to join.
In America’s political environment, those activities take money and lots of it. It has been deliberately constructed to be so, a de facto plutocracy.
Do you really think the market duopoly of Democrats and Republicans are spending billions – yes,that’s with a “b” – for nothing? That huge lobbies and influential billionaires are giving away money for nothing?
Does any corporation on top of a market even consider stopping its vast spending on marketing and advertising?
No, of course, not, and just so America’s duopoly imperial party, the Democrats-Republicans.
And as long as Coke and Pepsi spend at the rates they do, there is almost zero chance of an alternative product ever becoming a threat.
American politics is not conducted a bit differently than such corporate operations.
The reason Trump won was Obama. Disillusioned Democrats who saw no benefit from their ‘hero’ stayed home. The rest picked a candidate they thought was not beholden to political power. Someone who was independantly wealthy and promised to drain the swamp.
Just read your article on how American politics work, John. Very clear and well stated, and I agree with your analysis 100%!
Yes, the US Military Empire is a vast (it uses more petroleum products than any other entity on Earth) Killing Machine.
Many USians appear not only indifferent to this fact, they really do not want to know the actual truth of things.
When it was revealed that four US soldiers had been killed in Niger that, in fact, the US. Military were actively “involved” in ALL of Africa’s nations but one, the majority of those I spoke with, many of them “liberals” and “progresses”, self-proclaimed, said that they did not want to know what the US Militaru was doing, “Because, then our enemies would know, too …”
I pointed out that the people of Niger “certainly knew as, likely, did many other Africans, as do the people in other countries where the US is engaged in “Secret” wars or “exercises”.
When I asked about the moral implication of broad and permanent warfare, the response was either that “out” wars are “humanitarian” or simply “right” because the US is a moral nation and only does good things.
Mind you, these are adults, most more than fifty years of age, college educated, and they consider themselves well-informed. Some even proudly said they listened to “both sides”, CNN and Fox, weighed both and arrived at the truth of things.
I would say, John, that the Propaganda Machines of Hollywood, the media, and Academia are running full blast and most successfully.
As well, the myths of exceptionalism, indispensable-ism, and the belief, never fully articulated, but always implied within the vast tapestry of US “specialness” and religious self-adulation, that, if Jesus were a country, then He would us, are in full-throated “play”.
As you know, I am certain, the US Miltsry is the most respected and trusted “arm” of the Federsl government, asnpoll after poll has shown, once the Vietnam Syndrome was effectively banished.
Years ago, at a parent-teacher ment and greet, I was talking with my youngest daughter’s English teacher and I mentioned my concern that there was so little discussion of those killed in the War on Terror, considering the role which “body counts” had once played in Vietnam. She broke into tears and said she could simply not understand the unwillingness of the majority of people to even acknowledge what was happening,
We agreed that there was not even an official concern with knowing how many, in fact, were being killed even as we had to realize that millions were being displaced, wounded, made widows and orphans in Afghanistan and Iraq.
She said I was the only parent who had broached this subject and how much she appreciated the opportunity of talking about it.
We are a nation, hardly a society, in the sense of how we treat each other, isolated in our own hubris and unwillingness to recognize that our exalted lifestyle comes at the long-term expense of other people and other nations and societies from whom we steal and extract their resources.
For decades, as six percent of the Earth’s human population we insisted on having fifty percent of the Earth’s resources, at whatever vicious cost.
It is true that our corporate-military “racket” steals less, these days, but our collective sense of entitlement remains, intact, un-examined, and un-apologetic.
This comment was in response to John Chuckman’s first comment above.
DW, as you and many here have pointed out: the Hollywood-media-academia propaganda machine has a tight grip on American consciousness. But you are one of the few who has broached the subject of “willful blindness”, which I often detect in others from my senior age cohort. Most are sitting on wealth acquired over a lifetime, and have been watching it multiply as fast as the Fed can print. These people are eager voters, and typically vote their pocketbook.
I’m constantly reminded of the Upton Sinclair quote: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.” When discussing American policy I often detect this attitude: “whatever is good for ME is good policy.” In my opinion, this mode of thinking implies: “And the hell with everybody else.” I wonder, would this attitude of self-interest change if for once they truly faced the suffering we inflict on other nations so they can enjoy this excess wealth and ease?
What you are clearly unaware of is that there were 21 sister marches in Japan on the same day along with solidarity actions in Canada and across the US. Without corporate money and media- what do you really expect? We were delighted with the outcome. Ours is not a one-time event. Hide, watch, criticize all you you want.
We will be acting again soon.
National Co-Director and Boston Organizer
Women’s March On The Pentagon 2018