Saturday, January 10, 2009

Why I'm Pissed Off...

My friends, the US supplies approximately 53% of the world's weapons.

In 2003, 80% of the top buyers of US weapons (20 of the top 25 top clients) were countries that our own State Department labeled undemocratic or countries known for their failure to uphold human rights, such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

Here's a REALLY fun fact: In 1999, the US weapons industry supplied arms to 92% (!) of the conflicts in process ANYWHERE ON THE PLANET, often supplying both sides of the conflict. We also usually recieved more money in arms sales from those countries than we gave them in aid.

There have only been 29 years in all of documented human history when peace has reigned, and as long as the US exists, I don't see that number growing. We're whores of destruction. My country is not the least bit interested in solving world conflicts, only profiting from them. I'd rather my country's economy descend to the depths of hell than we all have beach houses and Mercedes' because the way things stand right now, all of the things we are so privileged to have are covered in blood.

I'm even more pissed off because the religious right, the Moral Majority, is in favor of it all. Let's look at some quotes from religious figures in the media:

"We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity. We weren't punctilious about locating and punishing only Hitler and his top officers. We carpet-bombed German cities; we killed civilians. That's war. And this is war." - Ann Coulter

"There will never be world peace until God's house and God's people are given their rightful place of leadership at the top of the world. How can there be peace when drunkards, drug dealers, communists, atheists, New Age worshipers of Satan, secular humanists, oppressive dictators, greedy money changers, revolutionary assassins, adulterers, and homosexuals are on top?" - Pat Robertson

"I believe that God has planted in every human heart the desire to live in freedom. And even when that desire is crushed by tyranny for decades, it will rise again." - George Bush

Just a few examples. What bothers me is the rhetoric (which you can see moves from very explicit and abrasive with Coulter to very implicit and subtle with Bush) is such that it utilizes Christianity and a belief in God to both cover up the US's sinister role in world conflicts but also push for further involvement in conflicts. These conflicts have nothing to do with "freedom" or "God's will," I assure you. It's about money.

I can't even find words to convey how angry I am with all of this right now! I want to move out of the country, to march on the steps of the White House, to strip naked and stop being a consumer on any level. I just don't know how to react.

What makes me even more angry is that I know I'm going to be lulled back to sleep by the decadence I'm surrounded by, courtesy of the US's bloody reign. I may be mad for a while, my friends may be angry, I may even create a movement of irate people who are willing to commit themselves to protest for months on end, but eventually we'll all go home, put on our Tommy Hilfiger shirts, and fill up our SUVs at the closest Texaco. I feel miniscule and helpless against the horrific injustice of the world we live in.


Anonymous said...

I think you are stupid, thats all I can say

Mark said...

How very brave of you to post that anonymously! Your evidence is very compelling.

Lady A said...

Oh the joys of blogging...

Seriously, upon reading "Fast Food Nation" I find myself overwhelmed by the atrocities that are committed on the every day American people- by other Americans.

Its this corporate attitude where greed is more than abundant. Its crippling and destructive.

But we support these companies every day by eating and shopping at their locations.

You almost have to turn a blind eye just to operate or move through the world. Lets say I do stop eating at fast food chains, cook at home, speak to my friends to share that McDonalds is just as bad as Wal Mart.

I dont personally change the world over night. In fact Im not sure I change the world at all... I just do my part- and hopefully the collective thats in favor of justice, clarity, and compassion- works its way through to some balance.


Anonymous said...

I've always been astounded at our self-satisfied belief that we believe God is on our side when we go to war.

As for the anonymous commenter, I find that people who won't identify themselves rarely have anything of value to add to the discussion.

Anonymous said...

hey mark, i couldn't help myself so i had to reply. i see you have now become a liberal. first you won't eat meat. now you want to dance naked at the white house. my goodness.

now i am not to here to stand up for the weapons market or say how it's all right. i understand that it's shady business and there's obviously a darker underbelly. but still, there are some things at least to think about.

if we are selling 50% of the weapons in the world, who the heck else is selling the other half? we are pretty much the only country left in the west with a military industry so this means it must be some other country with a military industry like china, north korea (sort of i guess) and russia. i don't see this is an exceedingly good thing and i would think you need to counter balance this somehow. i also know that every time i see some crazy in some crazy country doing something crazy, it seems like they are doing it with an ak-47. perhaps this is a gross generalization but i know that all of africa fights with ak's and so do pirates (freaking pirates).

about the 80% to bad countries, it's called real politik (i think kissinger came up with that, i read on wikipedia at least). this is another shady subject and hard to really pin down but i think it's important to take into account. we give bin laden guns and he leads to the demise of the ussr. good! he then sells those weapons, creates a worldwide muslim extremist terrorist organization and they crash planes into our buildings. bad! in the middle east, you have crazies and then saudi arabia and egypt. i understand they put women in jail for getting raped or taking off their burkas or whatever but what if we didn't have a large, somewhat stabilizing for in the middle east? what if we had no influence? is that a good thing? we are weighing pros and cons which is a difficult thing to do but it's something to think about.

about the 92% thing, i really don't have anything to say except that i am sure there is more to the story behind that. i know that we are expected to be a part of every conflict on the planet and police it in some way so i could see us getting dragged into like that somehow. about the both sides thing, that doesn't sound like a good thing right? prolly not.

now blaming the US for a conflicting world is definitely not fair. the simple fact is that military machinery that equalizes battles is more prolific than ever. it used to be the british versus the natives, which was guns versus rocks/arrows. it's easy to keep those people in check. what about people with rockets? what about people with trucks and tanks? it was nice when all the power was in one person's hands back in the day but that's not true now. so just because everyone has the ability to start a war now and make it a bloody, lengthy thing doesn't mean that the US is to blame. interestingly, usually when there is a hyper power there is actually a great amount of peace. there was the pax romana and pax britannica which involved the whole world doing good so the hyperpower wouldn't put them in their place. we have been the hyperpower for almost 20 years and we have done very little of that and have had very little peace. i am not here to say we needed to be more heavy handed but i still find it interesting.

and quit beating on the religious right! that gets so played out and religious right is on its way out if you ask me anyway. if you are getting pissed at something anne coulter or pat robertson said then you are just running into a brick wall or picking easy targets to be irate about. they will say what they will but i don't think that is real indicative of anything.

about bush though i think we just have a different viewpoint. i am of the ilk that no american president (and most americans) would not knowingly kill someone to make money or get oil or get a contract for haliburton. i believe that these people are real human beings and for the most part real human beings don't do that (perhaps this is all another argument for another time). so if you think he is trying to make it religious or morally correct so he can get what he wants, i think you are projecting that on to him. i read a thing by an evolutionary ethicist (not exactly my deal) and he said that he thinks it is unethical for some people to have food and others to starve (locally and worldwide). could this be extended to things like human rights and freedom? now i am definitely beginning to sound like a right winger. maybe we are on a crusade! dangit!

i read that fast food nation book when i was a freshman in college. it was kind of nice b/c i had no idea about "politics" or "ideologies" or "agendas" so i read it with no preconceived notions. there are some bad things in there but at least they use all beef patties!

also, i think you are a stupid too.

-anonymously nathan textor

hey, when're we gonna meet up in CoMO again and hang out with pete? we need to. in fact, i talked to him on the phone tonight! weird! i also hope this anonymous guy at least added something. and don't be so hard on us anonymous people!

Anonymous said...

I think Nathan makes some GOOD points but I dont understand why he has to be such a royal dick about it.

In particular, calling you a pansy and then requesting that you guys hang out. Real cute.

To further the irony, theres this quote about going to college and being so aware of "political agendas" upon reading "books". But its too much to assume that any presidental or political figure would use agenda to further selfish gains... or *gasp* even kill people for it.

Hey, Im gonna be anonymous! So dont be hard on me ok? ;)

Just try to show some understanding for the tactless and cowardly!