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The Pentagong Show

The Pentagong Show
United State of Terror: Is Drone War Fair?

Monday, August 10, 2009

Market Forces are Armed Forces.

"We will pay for this one way or another. We will pay to reduce greenhouse gas emissions today, and we’ll have to take an economic hit of some kind. Or we will pay the price later in military terms. And that will involve human lives."
GEN. ANTHONY C. ZINNI, former head of the Central Command, on climate change.

That's a quote printed in the NYT, making it a trifecta of points on which the military and I agree, and making it a co-conspirator on the issue in the Climate change hoax the Republican Party insists scientists the world over are putting over on the world, presumably simply for kicks.

The other two points are Peak Oil Production, and the relative safety of employment in the Armed Forces as opposed to in an American Company as a civilian. Using as much oil as the country of Sweden makes the military very sensitive to the former, and the need to recruit from a more reluctant civilian base during what has been blithely accepted as the new paradigm of Perpetual War, lead them to post the stats of the relative safely of employment by the military on their recruitment website. And those stats only included urban mayhem such as stabbings, fires, muggings, etc, and completely discounted the carnage on the freeways, which claims more loves every 2 weeks than the WTC outrage; but for that cartrocity, there's only acceptance. Why quibble with a transportation system that demands the blood sacrifice of more than 50,000 dead/yr? Who needs those million souls
lost every generation merely trying to get from point A to point B? No wonder living in a state of perpetual War barely registers in such a polity's consciousness.

Which is why General Zinni's remark is so, ...well...remarkable. Because the link between climate change and the economy, specifically the global economy, where any idea of any economic system that differs from The United States of America's virulent form of predatory, free-for-all Capitalism is brutally suppressed and any green shoots of a healthier economic system jackbooted out of existence. This has left us with no Plan B, no sustainable economic mode of existence that sustained life for centuries, whether because they were too remote or too subsistence level to bother with, that has survived the onslaught of globalization, will remain intact. From tribes in the Amazon whose home, the rainforest itself, or the Inuit and other Eskimo tribes in the far North, who were too small to have captured Mordor's all-consuming eye, will simply be steam-rolled out of existence.

But with the failure of our fossil-fuel-based, we-win-you -lose, might-makes-right, winner-take-all, system staring us in the face, which is what Gen'l Zinni's statement, albeit obliquely, suggests, there is no viable alternative, because anything that was viable has been trampled underfoot. And any hope for a resurgence of other modes of existence taking root are all frustrated by the OECD's response to the crisis, which is to further fuel their dependence on oil-burning carbon-spewing infrastructure by cash-for-perfectly-good-assets-to-destroy-them, and heralding the fact that now the country of China has become the number one market for new cars, all of which sucks away any resources for investment in a less carbon-intensive future.

So if you wonder about the human lives to which General Zinni's statement refers, ask the American Indians. You can't voluntarily "reduce your carbon footprint" and think that's going to help your grandchildren (or, as has been becoming increasingly clear, even to the most obtuse among us, your children). Or closer to home, look to transit riders, whose fares have gone up dramatically, and armed guards greet riders as they disembark (Especially in San Francisco...higher fares for better service? nope. To pay the goon squad), the same riders who don't smog up the air, but whose taxes pay for $4500/vehicle boondoggles that INCREASE the amount of climate-changing CO2 discharged into the air (

In not signing the Kyotot protocol, President Bush said that it would be bad for the economy. The policies of his 8-year reign assured that we would be even more addicted to oil at the end of it and that any attempt to change that dynamic would be even worse for the economy once he was through, but that those who put him into office and supported him would continue to profit, first from its last splurge, then from its collapse. That is exactly what's happening. Those lives lost Gen Zinni refers to may very well be our own, but more likely they'll be those on other continents, of people less responsible for the conditions that precipitated their demise than us.

But let freedom ring its death knell for others so we can continue our pursuit of loneliness...oops, I mean happiness.

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