As an appreciative reader of Chalmers Johnson's encompassing book on America's global militarism, The Sorrows of Empire, it is always instructive to find Mr. Johnson writing on similar subjects out of what I believe to be a true patriotism - a patriotism of dissent born from a deep wish for America the Experiment to succeed along the lines of the principles our nation was founded upon, and the glowing and honorable mythologies we once proudly espoused but now have trouble hiding behind.
Obama's Empire: An Unprecedented Network of Military Bases That is Still Expanding
By Catherine Lutz
Asked why the US has a vast network of military bases around the world, Pentagon officials give both utilitarian and humanitarian arguments. Utilitarian arguments include the claim that bases provide security for the US by deterring attack from hostile countries and preventing or remedying unrest or military challenges; that bases serve the national economic interests of the US, ensuring access to markets and commodities needed to maintain US standards of living.
(It isn't working. Cash-strapped Americans pay for war while doing without timely dental care. Is this a fair trade when your jaw swells?)
Good Reasons To Liquidate Our Empire And Ten Steps to Take to Do So
By Chalmers Johnson
According to the 2008 official Pentagon inventory of our military bases around the world, our empire consists of 865 facilities in more than 40 countries and overseas US territories. We deploy over 190,000 troops in 46 countries and territories.
Undermining America has been a goal of the select few all along.
And as an astrologer (however reluctant with a tyrant 10th-house Uranus in Gemini), it was quite predictable in 1999, 2000, and beyond that I and yo mama would be called everything under the sun when I posted in Slate's The Fray concerning the neocon tendencies to rob our Treasury by fraudulent nation-building and other public-till raids, stiff US taxpayers with private costs made public, and undermine our nation's sovereignty until the ship slowly sinks into an ocean of oblivion.
Now swearing in type is not my specialty, but the Fraysters in Slate's forum at that time were great at it, so brashly puffed up almost as big as Bush the Eagle-Faced and Cheney the Balded-Pate ever were as they strutted about the coup'd White House - the pretzel-lovin' prez sharing cigars with Prince Bandar on the White House balcony as the Pentagon's embers sizzled and smoke arose in the distance, circa 9/11/01.
"To bankrupt America" was my answer for the oft-heard, 'Whys'? and the 'Why Do they Hate Us'? mantras, and for the rest of the soul-searching zeitgeist of the times.
But What Did We Do to Harm Anyone? We're fabulous! they'd assure themselves...'twas the arrogant America Can Do No Wrong attitude.
Meanwhile, back on the balcony, it was as if Bush and Bandar were celebrating something worth savoring, remember? And you know there had to be a heady wisp of compassionate conservatism wafting through the air along with the smell of what Cheney was cooking in the cellar.
Well, now it's 2009 so I ask you: what is wrong with Americans that we can't direct our attention, much less our energies, into the focused endeavor for which this nation now wimpers?
Guess I'll just mosey and read more of today's newsworthy Beer Summit reports that have captured many of my fellow citizens' imaginations when they're not busy playing with their phone apps or texting their honeypies.
Because you see: a president, a cop, and a professor walk into a bar...