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Updated: March 27, 2014 6:13AM
Cut military, invest in people to create jobs
I have lived through WWII, Korea, and the Cold War with the Soviet Union, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan; war and enemies have always been everywhere.
As an adult, I saw the folly of this during college in the 60’s when I was denied admission into graduate school due to my anti-war activities. My Constitutional right to free speech got me in trouble with those who advocated war. I have not been the same since.
Fast forward. We are now engaged in America’s longest war-in Afghanistan. Yet we will stay there until 2014. Why? More Afghans and Americans will die, billions more will be spent, money that will go directly to the 1 percent. How does this make us freer?
Americans need to understand how public money is allocated. 31 percent of the national budget is discretionary; that means we can use that money on energy, the environment, science, education and the military. But of that 31 percent, a whopping 57 percent goes to the military; science receives 1 cent, education 2.5 cents, and so forth. Not much left for people, yet the people pay the lion’s share of taxes.
Shockingly, $1 billion spent on education yields 26,700 jobs; that same amount spent on the military gets us only 11,200 jobs.
As to the national debt, we could reduce it by $1 trillion through lowering the number of our nuclear weapons, canceling Cold War research and reducing active duty troops in Europe and Asia.
The way out of the abyss of war is clear. Decades back, Marvin Gaye told us that “War is not the answer.” It never was and never will be. Today we cry “Jobs, not war!” I believe this has to resonate with each of us.