President Eisenhower said, upon his parting of the White House:
- In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.
-Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961
Well, we failed. We weren't vigilant, and in general, we aren't informed. So the military-industrial complex took over and dictates much of foreign policy and economic policy. Well, perhaps dictate is too strong a word...how about "exerts undue and exaggerated influence?" So then, if we concede the triumph of the MIC, then why are we so up in arms about a little legislation being written for a specific defense contractor?
The president pro-tem, Bill Frist, aka Senate Majority Leader, is the heir to a hospital fortune and the chief architect of Medicare reform. Where's the outrage regarding this particular abuse of power? How about the freebie for the developers of childhood vaccinations, absolving them of any wrongdoing should their products harm an individual? (Homeland security bill provision, still passed, because Dems are hamstrung.) And the latest ruse, the absolution of the makers of MTBE, groundwater-polluting fuel oxygenate, in the energy bill.
I don't get why Boeing is being singled out for getting legislation written to ensure no-bid contracts. Are we in the midst of a burgeoning witch hunt revolution? Halliburton has no-bid contracts too. Probably all these guys do. Are we just now waking up to the coffee?