Deficit Debate Ignores War, Labor Leaders Speak Out

Rep. Barbara Lee

Rep. Barbara Lee

As longtime labor leader Bob Muehlenkamp points out, three columns in the Washington Post, totalling 2,853 words, completely ignore the trillions spent on the Long War in discussing the deficits.

It’s ridiculous to claim to be a deficit hawk and a war hawk at the same time. Here’s some good news, from Peace Action West: Oregon’s labor leadership has sent a letter to their Congressional delegation condemning spending for Afghanistan while budgets are cut and jobs lost at home.

tom haydenOn strategy, in order to end the Afghanistan War, which is funded and supported by Democrats, the peace movement has to build anti-war support from the base institutions of the Democratic Party, notably labor, but also civil rights, womens, and environmental groups. If Democrats begin to see their base constituencies in their districts are taking a stand against Afghanistan, then it becomes much easier for elected officials to vote and speak against the war, including the President.

This is slow and frustrating work. But it’s beginning to happen. The Democratic National Committee has adopted a resolution by Rep. Barbara Lee calling for a substantial and significant beginning of withdrawals starting this July, with the tax dollars transferred to job creation.

For further information, contact U.S. Labor Against the War.

Tom Hayden
Peace Exchange Bulletin

Published by the LA Progressive on April 19, 2011
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About Tom Hayden

Tom Hayden is a former state senator and leader of Sixties peace, justice and environmental movements. He currently teaches at Pitzer College in Los Angeles. His books include The Port Huron Statement [new edition], Street Wars and The Zapatista Reader.