Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR#1217 Fun with Rick, Steven and Donna

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­­­FTR#1217 This pro­gram was record­ed in one, 60-minute seg­ment.

Intro­duc­tion: Proof that big things can, indeed, come in small pack­ages is Nick Turse’s impact­ful vol­ume The Com­plex: How The Mil­i­tary Invades Our Every­day Lives

Clear­ly writ­ten, brief and to the point, yet alto­geth­er rev­e­la­to­ry, the book details the many ways in which what Pres­i­dent Eisen­how­er termed “the mil­i­tary-com­plex” has come to dom­i­nate every­day life in the U.S. to an extent unre­al­ized by even rel­a­tive­ly aware cit­i­zens.

In the intro­duc­tion to the book, the author presents a fic­tion­al, three-mem­ber sub­ur­ban fam­i­ly of lib­er­al polit­i­cal per­sua­sion. Opposed to the Iraq War (the book was pub­lished in 2008), Rick, his wife Don­na and their teen-age son Steven are immersed in an envi­ron­ment every ele­ment of which is pro­duced by a con­trac­tor with the Depart­ment of Defense.

From their toi­let arti­cles to their work­out appar­el, from their elec­tron­ic media devices to their sun­glass­es, from their footwear to the auto­mo­biles they dri­ve, from the videogames Steven plays to the gaso­line that pow­ers their cars, from their impend­ing selec­tions of mass tran­sit for com­mut­ing pur­pos­es to the books they read, the inven­to­ry of their lives is pro­duced by com­pa­nies that con­tract with the Pen­ta­gon.

Writer Dorothy Thomp­son observed in 1940 (writ­ing about the Ger­man indus­tri­al­ists and financiers behind the Third Reich) that, in the eyes of the Third Reich oli­garchs, “eco­nom­ic con­trol leads auto­mat­i­cal­ly to polit­i­cal con­trol.”

We are of the opin­ion that Ms. Thompson–and the Ger­man eco­nom­ic titans she quotes–are cor­rect.

It is very dif­fi­cult to imag­ine how an enti­ty as large and per­va­sive as the Pen­ta­gon and its allied inter­ests could fail to man­i­fest polit­i­cal con­trol, fol­low­ing auto­mat­i­cal­ly on their mas­sive eco­nom­ic preva­lence.

The Com­plex: How The Mil­i­tary Invades Our Every­day Lives by Nick Turse; Pic­a­dor [SC] Met­ro­pol­i­tan Books [Hen­ry Holt & Com­pa­ny]; Copy­right 2008 by Nick Turse; ISBN 978–0‑8050–8919‑6; pp. 1–14. 


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