Writing of economic imperialism, Velvel reminds that in 1898 Americans realized the nation's capacity to produce had outrun the domestic market's capacity to consume and that a vibrant economy required overseas markets and coaling stations for the Navy warships that would protect overseas trade. "Nothing has really changed, except that today we call it globalization and defend it as bringing wealth to all when in fact it has worsened the dire poverty of many."
Gulf War I, he writes, "was fought for oil, not to stop tyranny despite President Bush-41's lying efforts to portray it as a fight for freedom in Kuwait---which is at best an autocracy."
Velvel judges that many, if not most, Americans "are loathe to admit that we are an imperialist power, but it inarguably has been true since 1898 (the year of the Spanish-American War)."
He goes on to warn that, "It is only we, not any enemy, who are going to end up crippling our own country through constant warfare if we do not get off the warmongering kick we have been on for at least 100 years." Velvel quotes President Lincoln's words on the subject: "If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide."
Author Velvel says the idea that the U.S. favors war too much and engages in military action too much does not mean that he is a pacifist. "It (this article) is based not on a view that we must never kill anyone, but rather on the view that we too often choose to kill people---far too many people---and that we do so for insufficient reasons, with far too few good results and, too often, very bad results."
The Massachusetts School of Law at Andover is a non-profit law school dedicated to the education of students from minority, immigrant, and low-income households who would otherwise not have the opportunity to obtain a legal education.
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