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News Link • Military Industrial Complex

Feeding At The Pentagon Trough

• Lawrence Davidson
When Americans think about the state of their economy, what they are doing is reflecting on their personal economic conditions. For most citizens, the economy is their pocketbooks and not the state of the nation’s purse. This is part of what can be called "natural localism," the fact that almost everyone concentrates their attention first and foremost on their local environment. Americans are particularly prone to such myopia due to the emphasis given to "me first" individualism by their culture. Unfortunately, this orientation has proven increasingly harmful for America’s national economy. The federal politicians are as "me first" as their constituents and so no one seems to be able to manage the nation’s money according to national needs. A good examination of this was put forth by former Labor Secretary Robert Reich on August 11, 2010.
With the ghost of Dwight Eisenhower hovering in the background, Reich noted that the U.S. now appears hopelessly devoted to maintaining the economic activities of the military-industrial complex regardless of need, efficiency, or cost. Why so? Because, he tells us, almost four million Americans are directly employed by either the military or military related companies and corporations. This makes the military-industrial complex, "America’s biggest–and only major–job’s program." It also makes the entire set up politically inviolable. The distortions that result are labeled "nuts" by Reich. Here are some examples of them:

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