Let's Face It
The Warfare State is part of us
The USA’s military spending is now close to $2 billion a day. This fall, the country will begin its seventh year of continuous war, with no end in sight. On the horizon is the very real threat of a massive air assault on Iran. And few in Congress seem willing or able to articulate a rejection of the warfare state.
The warfare state didn’t suddenly arrive in 2001, and it won’t disappear when the current lunatic in the Oval Office moves on.
The warfare state doesn’t come and go. It can’t be defeated on Election Day. Like it or not, it’s at the core of the United States -- and it has infiltrated our very being.
What we’ve tolerated has become part of us. What we accept, however reluctantly, seeps inward. In the long run, passivity can easily ratify even what we may condemn. And meanwhile, in the words of Thomas Merton, “It is the sane ones, the well-adapted ones, who can without qualms and without nausea aim the missiles and press the buttons that will initiate the great festival of destruction that they, the sane ones, have prepared.”
The triumph of the warfare state degrades and suppresses us all. Even before the weapons perform as guaranteed.
It's not just the US; they are the (current) leaders, but many have followed. For example, Australia (indeed, the overwhelming majority of the so-called Free World) have bought into this basic philosophy, following the US into one misadventure after another. I suppose it's Good for the Economy -- military spending has helped support our pyramid scheme of an economic system since WW2 -- which is an all-purpose excuse to justify all manner of behaviour nowadays, from exploitation of the weak and poor to environmental degradation to outright warfare to gain control over natural resources, all in the name of Profit.
One way or another, the current system is coming to an end soon. Let's hope that enough of humanity can survive reaping the mess we've sown to build something new and (hopefully) better.