American Empire: How the Military-Industrial Complex Is Warping America’s Values

Part 3

It seems that most Americans will continue to support whatever war du jour is served up by their government. As long as most Americans remain silent as to what American media chooses to cover, we will continue to see coverage of media celebrities and coverage of weather events as “news”. We can see that the coverage of Haiti’s situation has already faded into the background as we watch the snowstorms that hit the Mid-Atlantic States take center stage.

Meanwhile, the assaults on the Taliban in Helmand Province in Afghanistan can be seen on the BBC and most international news outlets if American audiences should be so inclined. World news can be seen on world class news outlets until such time as the powers that be decide that it is no longer in our best interests to see these reports. If it is decided that world news will no longer be seen on American TV, most Americans won’t even notice.

Now that corporate control of our elections is out in the open thanks to our Supreme Court, we might as well realize that what we see on our televisions and read in our newspapers is also corporate-controlled. We can still tune into the internet to see world news and different opinions, but I can see that soon even the internet will swallowed up by corporate money.

Let’s summarize before I stop. Our elections are dominated by two corporate dominated political parties. We are, by the way, one of a minority of countries that are ruled by only two political parties. With over 350 million Americans, it is amazing that two political parties can represent workers, poor people, rich people, the dwindling Middle Class, those on the West Coast, East Coast, Central U.S., Southern States, Alaska and Hawaii so effectively.

We get our news from corporate outlets that basically all report on the same things with very little variation on what they report on. This is all being done as most networks cut their overseas bureaus. Meanwhile this seems to be fine with most Americans.

Our defense budget has never decreased since the Second World War. Even though the threat of Communism disappeared, it was replaced by Islamic fundamentalism that has allowed our defense industry to continue to operate as it did during the cold war. Between the Cold War, The War on Drugs, and the War on Terrorism, this country has been at war during all of our lives.

After six years of beating my head against a brick wall, I have decided that most people in this country are just not that interested. As long as they can be entertained, it makes no difference to them what our country does in the guise of “fighting the war on terrorism” or “the war on drugs” as long as American Idol still airs and isn’t interrupted by something as boring as The State of the Union speech.

End of Part 3.

Timothy V. Gatto

Tim Gatto’s new book Complicity to Contempt is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Abe’s and other fine bookstores now. Kimchee Days, A novel about an anti-aircraft Battery (reminiscent of M*A*S*H and CATCH-22) in Korea during the years 19690-1971 will be out soon.


  1. Lauren says

    This tale is NOT a “tired cliche”, as “lou” above so uneloquently put it.
    In fact, I have to say THANK YOU to the author for writing this, and especially for even mentioning the doubts about 9/11. It is impossible to talk about so many of the things that trouble this poor nation without thinking about 9/11, and just a preliminary glance over the crossfire about that day is enough to raise questions far more egregious than anything otherwise mentioned in this article. And, if one views the world through the eyes of a 9/11 Skeptic, the mournful death march of America suddenly starts sounding more dark, ominous and overpowering than one citizen can handle – so, most people disregard such possibility as ludicrous, and NO ONE talks about 9/11 (unless they are praising firefighters or trying to justify the Iraq Invasion).

    So thank you, Timothy Gatto, for being brave enough to voice your doubts about this country amidst an atmosphere of absolutism and intolerance.

  2. lou says

    why don’t you tell us something we DON’T know, genius.
    we have been told this same tale since MAD magazine, lenny bruce, mort sahl, i.f. stone, ramparts , free press, ms.etcetcetc
    tried to awaken the sleeping giant.
    we got what we deserved. donuts cheeseburgers mocha double decaf lattes big screen tv sports and T& A flicksVS. the plight of the 3rd world, the health of our kids, the continuing wars mand the endless stealing nby the pigs at the trough in our beloved capitol at sodom on the potomac…
    c’mon. if it bleeds it leads, bread and circuses, let ’em eat cake…opium of the masses, etc etc.
    your tale is a tired cliche, we see it every single day and talk talk talk.

    what do you want to do about it????what can we do???

    this ain’t rhetorical. offer something better than waving your arms and yelling that the sky is falling.
    hey-remember the 60’s…if you ain’ part of the solution, you mus’ be part of the problem.
    thank you for being a gadfly on the horses ass…stay outta the line of fire.

  3. Sharon Tipton says

    Tim, I agree – America has been dumbed down rather successfully. I blame first and foremost the corporate media. Remember, the Free Press is supposed to inform the electorate of issues which affect us. And we get none of that. Glossed over propaganda is all. That’s why I’d like to renew a call for media reform. We Want the Airwaves, baby; they belong to the people. People are sick of bs news – a majority of people don’t trust what corporate media says. I think we should boycott corporate TV once and for all. (it’s really not that entertaining, anyway.)

  4. says

    With all of the jabbering going on out there about ways to cut spending, only Bernie Sanders of Vermont (God bless him!) has had the common sense to state what should be blatantly obvious: We need to make drastic slashes in military spending.

    “In the councils of government we must guard against the acquisition of power, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties and democratic processes.”

    Dwight D. Eisenhower
    January 17, 1961

    We could cut our military budget in half and still have enough really cool bombs in our arsenal to destroy the world three times over – and then some. The Cold War is over, folks. Why on earth are we still pissing away our national treasure on these military contractors? Could it possibly be that our very economic survival depends on our stockpiling the entire planet with weapons of mass destruction? That is the question we all should be asking.

    “Blessed are the peacemakers;
    for they shall be called sons of God.”

    Jesus of Nazareth

    Now there’s something for the so-called “Christian Right” to ponder. Just a thought.

    Tom Degan
    Goshen, NY

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