Linked with Dave Lindorff – USA.
Published on Counterpunch, by Dave Lindorff, 31 January, 2009.
President Barack Obama and his economic team are being careful to couch all their talk about economic stimulus programs and bank bailout programs in warnings that the economic downturn is serious and that it will take considerable time to bounce back …
… It would be better if the new administration would be honest about this, because with honesty, we could have a recovery program that would actually address the real critical issues facing the country—the decline of our educational system, the irrationality of official promotion of home ownership that has led to the proliferation not just of suburbs but of exurbs, the over-reliance on the automobile for transportation, the unprecedented waste of resources, the pillaging of the environment, not to mention the decimation of the retirement system and the creation of a vast medical-industrial complex that is sucking the life-blood out of families and businesses alike.
With honesty, we could also confront the other big obstacle to national recovery—the nation’s obsession with militarism and foreign wars. The honest truth is that the US is technically bankrupt and in a state of chronic decline, and yet the nation persists in spending a trillion dollars a year on war and preparations for war, as though America were in mortal danger from foreign enemies.
The truth is that we are not threatened by Communism, by drug lords, or by Muslim Jihadists in any serious way. Rather, we have become our own worst enemy.
The administration could start by telling us all this straight up, but the problem is, most of us probably don’t want to hear it, which explains why we’re not hearing it. It also explains why we’re about to blow another trillion or so dollars on propping up failing banks, funding pointless highway and bridge construction, and blowing up illiterate peasants in remote places like Afghanistan and Pakistan.
(DAVE LINDORFF is a Philadelphia-based journalist. His latest book is “The Case for Impeachment” (St. Martin’s Press, 2006 and now available in paperback edition). Lindorff spent five years reporting on China and Hong Kong for Business Week magazine. His current work is available at this can be happening.net).