Saturday, October 11, 2014

The ISIS threat: Who benefits?


SOTT | Oct 10, 2014 | Ted Baumann
"We often speak of how the events of 9/11 changed the U.S. It's true: Ever since then our liberties have been trashed, our society has become militarized, and our politicians have become spineless fear-mongers, using the threat of terrorism to justify their every violation of the Constitution, democratic norms, and basic decency."
Last week, my colleague Jeff Opdyke reminded us that like all power-hungry states, the U.S. requires enemies like ISIS to keep the population distracted and mobilized against the wrong threats. As he rightly put it: "War ... gives government the cover it needs to curtail liberties and freedoms here at home. It gives government reason to rally the citizenry as the long-term health of the nation deteriorates."

Of course, war does more than just that. War generates massive flows of taxpayer money to the defense industrial sector, which passes some of it on to money-hungry politicians, who vote for more war and thus more money for defense. And so on.

After decades of nonstop warfare in the Middle East, against enemies largely imagined, many Americans react to such matters with a cynical shrug and sigh. "Whaddya gonna do? That's the way things always are," they say.

No, things are not always that way. Things are that way because we have made choices ... choices we can change.  

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