The Pentagon is currently charging U.S. taxpayers approximately $1.9 million per minute. The American people are beginning to understand that this is a lot of money and that some of it might be better spent on other things. Y’think?
The escalating per capita levels of U.S. citizens’ mandatory commitment to paying for nuclear weapons are fairly overwhelming. We each, on average, pony up more than $4,000 each year to buy a range of services, largely devoted to forcing others to do what we want.
Since the average U.S. citizen pays approximately $8,500 in federal income taxes each year (again, this is deceptively low, since there are far fewer actual income taxpayers than there are citizens), this means that half your income taxes, roughly, go to some aspect of the military. We can’t put everyone to work, but we can afford to pay for bases in most of the nations on the planet. We can’t have Medicare for all, but we can clutter space with military satellites. We are cutting public education and leaving our children in the lurch while we deploy thousands of troops to Australia. This is where to start. There is no greater single problem than U.S. military spending.
The more we spend on the military, the more we pollute
The more we spend on the military, the fewer jobs we create or maintain
The more we spend on the military, the less we can spend on the goods and services of life
It is time to resolve that 2012 should be the year we get a grip on this.
Tom H. Hastings (firstname.lastname@example.org) lives in Portland, Oregon and directs Peace Voice.