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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 6/1/11

Seven Defects of American Governance -- Part 1

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Message Harold Hellickson

Beyond the Magnificent Seven, there are a bunch of other sevens; the seven climes, the seven continents, the feast of the seven fishes, the seven dwarfs, the seven deadly sins, the seven sacraments, the seven seas, the seven seals with their seven secrets, the seven virtues and the Seven Wonders of the World to name at least most of them.  


To these I have another seven; our federal government's policies of war and empire, the need for restoration of sanity to our monetary, fiscal, and trade policies, reversing the income inequality trend, and improving social justice. These I consider the seven major defects of modern day American governance which I summarized in an earlier OpEdNews article. Now and over the next few days, each of these defective policies are discussed in more detail.


War on Terror:   Stupidly enacted, stupidly conducted.   There is a high probability that withdrawal of our military from all of the Middle East would result in a very low probability of future terrorist attacks on American soil.   Acts of terror are acts of criminality, not war unless conducted by a sovereign power.


The policy of Mutually Assured Destruction served us well during the cold war.   A clearly stated policy initiating Assured Destruction through a congressionally approved Declaration of War against any sovereign nation imposing an act of terror on our nation, or that of an ally, would do as well and should suffice to prevent such an act.


Obama's National Security Plan continues the Bush prerogatives for unilateral and preemptive war without the constitutionally required approval by Congress.   A new National Security Plan should specifically forbid both.      


Reported costs since the 9/11 attacks: Congress has approved more than $1.1 trillion for Operation Enduring Freedom Afghanistan and other counter terror operations; Operation Noble Eagle, providing enhanced security at military bases; and Operation Iraqi Freedom.   Add to that another $83 billion annually for Homeland Security.


Civilian deaths recruit civilian terrorists.   Civilian deaths in Iraqi are well over 100,000.   Afghanis measure their civilian dead in the tens of thousands, Pakistanis in the thousands.


Those in our Military-Industrial Complex are the only winners.   We cannot afford war, neither financially nor morally. Last May, The Center for Arms and Non-Proliferation reported the inflation adjusted 2008 $696.3 billion defense budget authority was 67 percent higher than in 2001.   That number was 44.3 percent of the world's total; more than twice that of the rest of NATO combined, more than four times that of China and Russia combined -- eight times each individually, and seventy-three times that of Iran.   And that is only part of our total spending for national defense.


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A retired MBA, I am a former corporate ideologue, former 3rd party advocate and current curmudgeon. While a continued supporter of a 3rd party, I have concluded their efficacy cannot be demonstrated until our form of Government is changed to (more...)
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