I must thank Donald A. Moskowitz and his letter, “US military might keeps world powers in check,” in last Wednesday’s Daily Lobo for the nostalgic return to the family dinner table of my youth.
Soon after grace, one of the paternal uncles, an avid and adamant churchgoer, could be counted on to hold forth on the latest threat to the working folk of America by quoting from the latest newsletter, then delivered to the house by the U.S. mail, of the John Birch Society. Of course, we were obedient children of the Midwest, seen and not heard, so we nodded in pious acquiescence while biting our tongues and hoping the “Wonderful World of Color” via Tinker Bell’s magic wand would brilliantly splash across the television set, thus rescuing us kids from crazy scripture-quoting Uncle’s latest state of the state rant.
In hindsight, it seems ironic that our rescuer, racist Uncle Walt, was only using our TV to pimp his new California theme park and third-rate movies. Where is Jiminy Cricket when you need him?
It would be easy to give factual evidence disputing each of Moskowitz’s fantasies, but for the many who live in his rarified world of evil empires and U.S. exceptionalism, facts — even after nearly 60 years away from the Sunday dinner table — matter very little.
The chain of paper tigers — from dropping atomic bombs on civilians to end wars, the Joint Chiefs of Staff creating the Cold War, the Iran/Contra scandal, weapons of mass destruction, the War on Terror, ‘Mission Accomplished’, protecting American citizens by spilling the precious blood of our children who sign up out of economic desperation in Iraq and Afghanistan, and executing non-combatant civilians with aerial drones — speaks unequivocally for itself.
So does the retirement mill from the Pentagon and Senate which leads to lucrative consultant contracts in the labs of New Mexico.
It’s nearly 70 years later, and we remain a safe haven for war criminals. And all of this while over 50 percent of our children live below the poverty level, and our state, whose economy is bolstered by the labs and bases, spends less per child on education than 95 percent of the rest of the country.
It seems that trickle-down economics in practice works as well as compassionate conservatism.
Kudos to the Daily Lobo’s “Uncle” Donald for reminding We the People the importance, in a democratic republic, of recognizing where our “ammunition” can best be spent and where the real ‘enemies’ exist.
Ernest W. Sturdevant
Daily Lobo reader