I want to clarify just what I know to be true in the United States today and a little about my background. I recently posted an article on a large website that is read by many Democrats. In fact someone told me that I can't back up what I say with facts, and that my articles are "drivel". Let me tell you a little about myself.
First of all, even though I was against the Vietnam War I managed to stay in the Army for almost 21 years. I was heavily involved in the peace movement and let me tell you, the Army was aware of almost everything I did. Still, I retired but not at the rank I would have wanted to. I was a Democrat that was in love with the Kennedy brothers and Eugene McCarthy. I was a "liberal" Democrat, a term that has fallen out of favor in the last decade.
Throughout the Clinton years I was pretty happy with the government. I didn't know, or wasn't aware of what was taking place behind the scenes. I didn't know for example, that he raided the social security trust fund to balance the budget. When Bush was elected and 9/11 came, I was appalled at the lead up to the War in Iraq. I awoke from my lethargy and became very anti-Bush and Cheney. I was convinced they were monsters. I still do.
When I looked into the propaganda that was going on, I noticed that there were also many Democrats jumping in line with Bush and Cheney. I saw very few people that showed any sense of rationality. I started writing about 2004 about how I felt on my blog. Eventually I got picked up by different websites. At the time I was politically naive to say the least, seeing things in black and white, right or wrong, good or bad. I became so frustrated with the do-nothing Democrats that I tried to start another political party, The Liberal Party of America. In less than a year, with no money, we had a beautiful eight page website, a platform, and we had members working in eight states. I was elated at the fervor of our members.
Then it came time to try and get ballot access. I quickly learned how things political work. There are but two games in town, the Democrats and the Republicans and I quickly learned that they work hand in hand with each other, regardless of what you read in the papers or watch on TV. They have both fixed the races in every state and make it almost impossible to get ballot access unless you have bottomless pockets. Some States call for over 600,000 signatures on petitions to get on the ballot and the way most parties get these signatures is by paying corporations that do this kind of work a dollar a pop. Do the math.
I wondered how the two parties came up with the money so I investigated. I stumbled on to The Center for Responsive Politics (opensecrets.org) and was educated in campaign finance. I saw that the corporations and financial sectors dominated the political landscape. For those people that believe Barack Obama financed his campaign with small donations from the "little people" think again. His major campaign donor was Goldman Sachs. So much for the "grassroots".
I went to a dinner in honor of Wesley Clark, someone I admired very much. He basically told us in a wine and cheese setting that he was the one responsible for American and NATO involvement in Bosnia and Serbia. He said by the time Clinton found out, he had already committed NATO forces to the war. That doesn't say much about much for the idea that the "Commander in Chief" is sitting in the Whitehouse. Someone asked him about the Nazi Republicans. He said the first one that uses the N word loses. One lady asked what we "worker bees" should do. He said something like get involved, "Worker bees", what a demeaning phrase that was to me. I told him that I was Chairman of The Liberal Party of America and I asked him why nobody took Bush to task. He told me that we could change things with the next election.
The next election we did change things, in 2006 we threw the GOP out of the majority and for the first time in a while, we had a Democratic Congress. What did they do? Absolutely nothing, every defense budget went through, every signing statement unopposed, extraordinary rendition continued, torture continued and the Democrats sat on their ass, just like they've done for the last two years. Nothing about Imperial America has changed. The combat role in Iraq is over, but tell that to the 50,000 combat soldiers in Iraq.
I got off on a tangent. What I would like to do is offer some facts about the United States that you might not be aware of. These are things most Americans should be aware of because it affects us all. This is especially for the lady that called my articles "drivel".
1. We spend 46.5% of the entire World's military expenditures. Russia spends 3.3% and the Chinese. Spend 6.6%Iran spends a measly 2%. http://www.globalissues.org/article/75/world-military-spending
2. The two largest air forces in the world are the U.S. Air force and the U.S. Navy. http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?
3. The U.S Military accounts for 44% of the taxpayers funds to the government. http://www.globalissues.org/article/75/world-military-spending
4. The Death toll of Iraqi civilians during our invasion and occupation? From different sources from 100,000 to 1,000,000. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/mar/19/iraq