Monday :: Dec 1, 2008

Great, the Security Team

by paradox

The Big Man will be on the TV today to announce the media yap of his national security team, an event that thrills me as much going to work on a holiday-after Monday. It’s not that appointments to major executive slots like SecState aren’t important or don’t deserve attention, it’s that all this talk and counter-talk--Clinton on the side, please--sucks in an enormous amount of resources while accomplishing piteously little.

The fuzzy hissing vortex in today’s media swirl will be the nebulous concept of Security, wherein the new hotshots have a dazzling array of tanks, pistols, ships, knives, artillery, missiles, submarines, grenades, planes, rifles, drones, mortars, helicopters, satellites, and hovercraft so other countries don’t produce terrorists and free trade takes our jobs away. Would we then be Secure?

It’s hard to decide if such a question is more irritating or baffling, security is a complex, multi-layered experience lived every hour as a people that the Department of Defense has incredibly Jack little to do with. We all face this glorious Monday with a long list of security checks: immediately physical, financial, personal information and emotional, for all the trillions of dollars of investment SecDef will have at his disposal, how much do keeping the Canadians and Mexicans from invading have to do with it? Well?

We have treaties and allies in an interdependent global economy in a dangerous world, yeah yeah. That still doesn’t remotely justify the expense and construction of such a vast military complex for only one small slice of the human security spectrum, and even if it somehow did, hell take a look around, what has the employ of death from the American DOD given us a society?

Another indicator of total failure for militarism is that of all industrialized democracies the United States is the only one to employ it, no one else on the planet devotes such an insane proportion of their precious money on instruments of human death. One could argue US militarism is a unique characteristic of virtue from our grand good intentions only to be found in the American human spirit, but it seems plain to me it’s just another marker that something has gone very, very wrong.

Deficit hawks certainly are tiresome, not only do they have to be beaten over the head with the plain good Keynesian sense to spend on the little people they just whistle blithely on by for an annual $750 billion Defense expenditure as if taxpayer money arrived like falling rain every year. If I want a totally lost Monday just think about what $50 billion annually could do for American schools, Jesus save us, it is a trial to see such a fiver of money flow away with such quiet acceptance.

Not only accepted, but eagerly embraced as an Obama transition goal to get in good with the generals and the DOD, Michelle has the families on her agenda (that means results, in other words) and Obama even likely kept Bush’s SecDef (the Machiavellian partisan parts of me are really pissed off about that, Mr. President-elect). Whatever eventually comes forth as main policy security goals from the Obama Administration, well, actually spending less on rifles obviously won’t be one of them.

One sees from a lot of advance Obama transition talk that although DOD spending won’t do down the actual human emphasis will be anything but death and destruction, what a concept. Very nice, but I will always work for a day when America isn’t the vast military complex it is now.

It’s easy and I’ve argued enough in the past how such a gross American distortion on military spending actually decreases financial/career security, but immediate physical security I’ve always had the luxury of having, I’ll ignore it today like I do every day, and too much of my American experience and vision has been blinded to much of American insecurity simply because I am male.

We have little people Americans terrified to leave their homes this morning because perverts snap phone pictures up their skirts and post them on the internet, and this is just a tiny element of American sexual norms that have left a tragic legacy of terror, fear and broken lives on a scope that makes modern terrorism puny. I don’t have the faintest clue as to what to do about this, but just as an American male I can say we need to spend a lot more time and attention to how we treat our women and a much greater awareness of what is not acceptable.

As we march forward doing the best we can with what’s given us. Do me, Monday.

paradox :: 5:53 AM :: Comments (3) :: Digg It!