First Responders, properly lionized this week in 9/11 commemorations across the country, deserve better than our applause and the platitudes offered by media pundits. At a minimum, they, and the unions that represent them, deserve to be treated with respect and not made scapegoats for the economic mess created by the Bush tax cuts and the so-called war on terror.
When it comes to ‘keeping us safe’, they serve on the front lines, but along with teachers and other public service workers, they are being told to do more with less and accept cuts in their numbers and compensation to make up for skewed spending priorities that put war spending above all else.
Our communities have had the rug pulled out from under them by the priorities set by Congress and the Obama administration. When it comes to public safety, I’ll take First Responders over endless wars and gold-plated weapons systems each and every time.
Will you help me straighten out these twisted priorities?
Last week, the bipartisan Commission on Wartime Contracting in Afghanistan and Iraq reported to Congress that at least $60 billion was lost to waste, fraud, lax accountability and downright incompetence.
For decades, the Pentagon budget has been immune to scrutiny. The recession has changed that and this report will hopefully further disabuse Members of Congress – and most especially the so-called Super-Committee of congressional budget cutters – of the notion that every dime the Pentagon spends is a matter of national security.
In the past, the military-industrial-political-corporate-media complex has used this myth to great effect. We’re now hearing familiar refrains about a “hollow” military, should Congress go beyond the meager and as yet unspecified cuts agreed in the deal to prevent the US from achieving deadbeat status for the first time in its history.
I need your help to break down the wall of mythology that surrounds military spending.
Poll after poll indicates that we Americans oppose the tax cuts that have benefited the wealthiest 1% of the population since 2001, that we favor more spending on social programs and less on the military, and that we are thoroughly fed up with the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Ignoring us rather than representing us, a Super Committee has been empowered to make decisions that could affect generations to come, without a way for the people to be heard.
You and I stand together as part of a majority. There are many among us who will say we can’t win, that the game is rigged and organized money wins every time.
I think we’re a better country than that. Let’s send a powerful message of support for our first responders, teachers, nurses and others who really help make our country strong – we stand with you, and we stand for prioritizing rebuilding our economy over continuing to fund an endless war machine.
Humbly for Peace,
P.S. Peace Action’s Move the Money campaign has helped ensure military spending is part of the mix as the Super Committee negotiations begin. We’ve helped build a strong coalition at the national and local level. We have reached far beyond the peace movement to amplify our central message of ending the wars and cutting the Pentagon budget, not Medicare and Social Security. Your generous financial support, be it $5 or $500, can make a difference at a critical moment in our struggle for peace and economic justice.