Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A True Memorial Day

Anyone who knows me will attest that I am mostly a positive guy with a positive outlook on life. However, I am also the voice of reason in a society that appears more unreasonable on an almost daily basis.
As we approach the halfway point of 2012, I want to take this time to voice my opinion on several trends that I've encountered that range from minor annoyances to events that make we want to prepare an apocalypse bunker. They all fall under one category.
The Worship of the Military Industrial Complex.
I am really getting sick and tired of the ever present glorification of the military industrial complex in this country. From the Chicago White Sox parading a returning soldier out in the middle of every home game to the made-for-tv spectacle that is suprising a military family with the surprise return of their loved ones from active duty, these tear jerking moments obscure the fact that our troops are fighting tyrannical wars that were justified by no less than boldfaced lies by appealing to sentimental emotions.
What's more, in the face of crisis level unemployment by our nation's recent college graduates and minority populations (just to name a few), state governments such as the one here in Illinois are literally cutting funding for vulnerable populations such as the mentally ill, elderly, and single mothers (to name but a few) for the avowed purpose of rectifying budget deficits. They say that we can ill afford to expand social safety net programs yet institute initiatives to help returning troops find employment, not because politicians really care about high unemployment rates amongst vulnerable populations, but in the hope that their approval ratings amongst conservative groups and military families will increase 2-3 points in an election year. On a more sinister level, the legislation that institutes seemingly noble programs such as this are usually tied to crippling austerity measures.
When you support our troops, you are hurting the neighborhoods that most of them emerged from to serve ”their” country.
Now, you must think that I am the most insensitive bastard on the planet right now and that I don't care about our troops. The fact of the matter is that I care about our troops so much that I refuse to support a PR campaign that uses their immense sacrifices for political gain.
I refuse to forget that when Bill Clinton left office in 2000, there was a budget surplus and rapid economic growth that permeated every fabric of American society and now, 12 years later, we are on the brink of global financial calamity due to unjustied war after unjustified war and Socialism for the rich while the poorest of the poor are subjected to free-market Capitalistic principles that have never existed in a pure form in any society that has ever existed on this planet.
I refuse to forget that Barack Obama promised us change and what we got instead was the same old ice-cream but in chocolate this time around. Don't challenge my patriotism because I refuse to parrot the status quo as propagandized by the tyrants in Washington. In a society whose very liberties are predicated on the existence of a free and impartial press, the words that I've just written are the greatest exercise in patriotism that one could ever engage in.
I remember going to a baseball game with an ex-girlfriend (she wasn't at that time but you get the point) when the team paraded a returning infantryman out to receive acknowledgment. Like robots, everyone stood up and applauded but I refused to do so because of my vehement opposition to the War on Terror (and every other war that the U.S. engages in for that matter).
I remember her asking me why I wouldn't just standup for a minute to support our troops? I told her that I was supporting them by refusing to demote their tremendous sacrifice to the level of a standing ovation, acknowledgement reserved for trivial feats such as a tremendous opera sonata or a walk-off homer.
I was being true to my convictions that non-violence and non-introventionism are the twin pillars that support the temple of Republicanism in its true manifestation.
The government would like you to think that they, along with their military wing, afford you the freedoms that you daily enjoy but, tell me, how free have you felt since September 11th, 2001? Not due to the specter that Islamist terrorist with bombs strapped to their chest present but because of the policies that our own government has inacted in the name of homeland security? Don't worry, I'll wait.
No executive, legislative, judicial or military branch can append or protect freedoms that the average citizen is not ready, willing, and able to die in defense of, even at the hands of one's own brothers and sisters.
As the Mystery Schools have taught its initiates for many millennia, the person that is afraid to die is dead already. Likewise, the person who is afraid to dissent from its goverment will never have an institution circumscribed by the consent of the governed.
Do you really want to support our troops? Do you really want to celebrate a true Memorial Day? The greatest memorial that we could ever give our troops and their families is our vehement opposition to unjust warfare and our unflinching demand that our government not send citizens to war on the taxpayer's dime. Demand that if the richest amongst us insist on engaging in conflicts that primarily if not totally benefit their business interest, they along with their children and grandchildren should be the first to enlist in our ”volunteer” military, the first to fight on the frontline, and the,last to return as it was in the chivalric days of yore.
That would solve the problem of veterans experiencing high levels of unemployment for good because that would make the powers that be think twice when it is their ass on the line.