Media lapdogs are marked by stenographic tendencies, sympathetic frames and a reliance on industry jargon. Politico’s latest report about Congressional Republicans working to undo looming defense cuts meets all three criteria.
The piece is accurately headlined “GOP eager to scuttle defense cuts,” and nowhere in the article is any reference to data disputing the Republicans’ assumptions. The cuts on the table only take us back to the huge 2007 levels.
By the second paragraph, the story has begun parroting partisan talking points. The so-called Republican plan will “undo hundreds of billions of dollars in defense cuts by replacing it with budget savings elsewhere,” the article by Seung Min Kim says. However that’s the last we hear of the plan’s specifics until much later when the savings are pegged at $100 billion.Read more
It’s was like a meaningless coda, as the war contractors at Blackwater USA changed its name again, two weeks after delivering Katy Helvenston-Wettengel with another insult.
For the last eight years, Helvenston-Wettengel has been fighting for justice and accountability for the preventable death of her son, a Blackwater employee named Scott Helvenston, in Iraq.
“Child prostitution, gun-running, rendition– Blackwater has this history, but to this day, there’s been zero accountability,” Helvenston-Wettengel said. “I feel like I not only lost my son, but I lost my country.”
She spoke directly to company President and Founder Erik Prince in 2004, having got his number from a reporter. She requested Prince send her son’s contract and an incident report, which documented the mission that sent her son to his death.
“He said he’d send it Fed-Ex in a few weeks,” she said. “Blackwater said I was going to have to sue them to get it.”Read more
As more Americans sour on our 10-year-old national nation-building experiment in Afghanistan, there’s a growing community of policy mandarins, activists and elites uniting to expose the myriad of ways war spending and military contracting have plunged our nation into a jobs crisis.
The existing counter insurgency operation in Afghanistan is hurting the American economy, and there is data to prove it.Read more
Congress departs for the Thanksgiving holiday having left us a gift. With the deficit committee failing to produce a plan to cut the deficit and with across-the-board cuts now the default, there remains a real chance for us to untie the Congressional straightjacket and refocus the national conversation on sustainable and constructive job creation.
The war industry knows this, and its allies in Congress are already moving to stop cuts to their piece of the federal budget, a total of $500 billion over 10 years. We’re certain the war industry’s Congressional allies are one among many things contractor CEOs are thankful for.
But as Americans take stock this Thanksgiving holiday, we thought it appropriate we expose some other turkeys that the war industry is celebrating this holiday season.Read more
The war industry stood back with glee when it released a shoddy study that produced the sought-after deceptive headlines about defense spending, the magic sauce of job creation. There was no balance to these reports, and the War Industry should know, because they funded it!
A cursory or peer review of its content would’ve demonstrated the leaps in logic and faith taken by the Second To None lobbying front.
Your and your neighbors’ jobs, or lack thereof, are of no concern to Second To None, an association funded by the Aerospace Industries Association. Their bogus “analysis” links job creation to military spending, but it is, like so much of the Pentagon’s hawkishness, detached and devoid of context and reality (.pdf).Read more
There’s the top 1% of wealthy Americans (bankers, oil tycoons, hedge fund managers) and there’s the top 0.01% of wealthy Americans: the military contractor CEOs.
If you’ve been following the War Costs campaign, you already know that these corporations are bad bosses, bad job creators and bad stewards of taxpayer dollars. What you may not know is that the huge amount of money these companies’ CEOs make off of war and your tax dollars places them squarely at the top of the gang of corrupt superrich choking our democracy. These CEOs want you to believe the massive war budget is about security — it’s not. The lobbying they’re doing to keep the war budget intact at the expense of the social safety net is purely about their greed.Read more
While millions of Americans are out of work or struggling to pay their bills, our government is spending billions of dollars a week on a war we don’t support in Afghanistan. At no time is this more apparent than on Tax Day, which is coming up on April 18.Read more