This Memorial Day Weekend is not just a reminder to buy new lawn furniture at some weekend only sale. It is supposed to be a time each year to remember all the folks who decided to sign up for one of our military forces and get killed, dismembered, psychologically changed forever or who is 91 years old and still proudly remembers in detail his or her heroic deed many years ago.
Most of our recent wars were needed to protect our country in foreign lands. Thankfully we are not currently at war with any nation in the world. Our newest threats are here on our soil from crazy people with guns and angry Muslim activates who have forgotten the peaceful roots of their religion. We need to read books like Foreign Policy Begins At Home by Richard N. Haass. He calls it the case for putting America’s house in order. Richard is the President of the Council of Foreign Relations. Yes, we should know more about guys like him rather than the relationships guys like Weiner and Sanford have. Those two guys have their personal relations known to all Americans. Most Americans don’t even know we have a Council of Foreign Relations.
In his book the theme seems to be for us to pull back in meddling in other nation’s affairs and to concentrate on the problems here on American soil. He says that the political dysfunctionality here in Washington DC is more dangerous to our citizens than anything going on anywhere else in the world. If we can get our leaders, our parties to work together problems with the economy would be over.
Our domestic problems come from various sources here and is structural. They come from the way we fund politics and how we allow big corporations to give loads of money to single candidates bribing them with money for votes . The way we draw the lines for districts winning more state by state electoral votes. The fact that the Republicans tried to repeal Obama Care for the 37th time. They won’t give up and simply realize that it will be the law of this land in 2014.
We need to go to war with our own dysfunction. The deficit has built up under both administrations. We went from a budgetary surplus at the end of the Clinton administration to squandering all the money and putting us in deep debt now. Our citizens are victims to tornadoes and hurricanes and all kinds of mudslides and natural disasters but no one seems to come to aid our growing homeless population in America.
When are we going to make the connection to the fact that we don’t have any money but yet we give a blank check to our military spending? Yes, the greatest way to remember our fallen soldiers would be to stop the killing machine our military has become. The budget at the Pentagon if we add the 13 countries behind us all together in the amount of money they spend on their military, we still spend more than all those countries spending combined.
Since 911 our military spending has doubled. We are the military might of the world right now; not China, not Europe not Japan. No other region has the might to effectively lead the world. We effectively killed Arab leaders but we did not effectively lead those countries to a good place. Now they are being run by Muslim radicals that we don’t get along with. The mess in the Middle East is a prime example of that our interest in them far exceeded our influence on them.
We should learn from the Middle East mess that we should not try to remake societies in our image where we can’t. We have been doing too much in the Middle East and we should be trying to scale back in that part of the world. We are building this M1Abrams Tank as part of the Federally funded jobs program that is building more tanks than the world needs. The Pentagon itself says that we don’t need any more. There are thousands of them parked everywhere protecting no one.
This memorial day we should all do something to tell our leaders to take care of us here at home. Give every soldier who has unselfishly given up parts of their lives to this country in our defense a free home and a pay check for the rest of their lives. Remember them and don’t just spend all your money on lawn furniture, beer and hot dogs. Burp.