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Est. April 5, 2002
Mar 19, 2020 - Issue 810
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Warfare and Healthcare

"Wall Street, the banking industry, the military complex
receive a form of socialism that is unfair and unequal.
In other words, undemocratic because it leaves the lives
of the 99% to the whims of a capitalist market. On the
other hand, it’s not likely that proponents of democratic
socialism would pander to war profiteers or politicians
and their corporate enablers calling for regime change
or the manufacturing of weapons to sell to law
enforcement and other nations whether friend or foe."

Overnight they found $1.5 trillion for Wall Street,

but they can’t find money to provide healthcare & living

wages for 140 million poor & low wealth people in America.

Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

Throughout the continent of Africa, men, women, and children worked hard to locate water, to develop the most effective skills for hunting large animals, thus providing nourishment, clothing, and shelter. In time, cultivating the land for food production as well as establishing communal structures required the participation of families and groupings for survival in a less than human-friendly environment.

An eye-witness account isn’t necessary—just common sense: For centuries, African people labored to wrestle from the Earth something that ultimately formed the bases of their civilizations. Indigenous people around the world, particularly those inhabiting North and South America, also had established work as the bases of their civilizations.

It would have been difficult to find the masses of people in Africa or in the Americas leisurely enjoying a “garden of Eden.”

In fact, when the Europeans, tired of trading with Africans for gold and silver, decided, in their leisurely time, to bargain with heads of governance—and just outright capture—men, women, and children to sell on the market, the light bulb that went off in their heads featured the word, labor.

The Democratic presidential candidates such as Biden, Warren, and Klobucher continue to familiarize Americans, particularly newer generations of young Americans, taught less and less about their overall history, with the narrative of hard working grandparents, parents. White Europeans! Remember how we worked hard on this land and built everything in sight.

Less audible but questions that must take place at the dining room table in rural America as well as in suburbia America: Then how did the blacks get here? Why are the Indigenous, for the most part, still on “reservations”? Why are Mexicans picking grapes in California?

Just as silent is the challenge to these white-washed narratives. It’s not that white great-grandparents, grandparents, parents didn’t work hard—but what’s left out of these narratives? The greats and the grands and the parents came out of nowhere and built their empire on what? What peoples’ suffering labor made it possible to announce anything to the world, a majority of whom are people of color?

It’s warfare, and warfare always begins in stories, seemingly innocent stories told over and over again, drowning out what made it possible for the heroes and heroines within the stories and, by virtue of blood kinship, to continue a practice of conquest, extermination, segregation, marginalization, incarceration… These stories can’t be a little innocent.

The two most inconvenient truths point to black, Indigenous, and Latinx populations in the US, for already underway, at the so-called “founding” of this nation, is the extermination and marginalization of Indigenous people. Disease, starvation, and the outright massacre of anywhere between 80-120 million men, women, and children among the Indigenous should matter to any storyteller, even if an immigrant to the US in the 19th or 20th centuries.

The “founding fathers,” most slaveholders, refuse to recognize the humanity of Africans and their descendants, except, ironically, as laborers, happy laborers, in their “gardens”; yet, 12 million Africans were purchased as property during the slave trade and, it’s estimated that two million died in the Middle Passage.

A foundation beginning in the practice of terrorism and greed builds a capitalists class of merchants, slaveholders, clergy, and politicians—and a narrative justifying the superiority of it’s enablers. There’s no sharing in the wealth-building from an Indigenous population, regularly massacred and survivors systemically marginalized. Present-day acknowledgment of the indebtedness due to descendants of enslaved blacks in establishing the US as a “superior” nation—don’t hold your breath!

As Gregory Shupak at FAIR writes, the “most murderous regimes in the history of our planet” have been right here in the US. And didn’t Dr. Martin L. King speak of “the greatest purveyor of violence,” i.e. the United States of America?

From 1899-1902, 20,000 Filipino troops are killed, and 200,000 civilians also die along with 4,300 American soldiers. Conflicts in Mexico, Haiti, Panama, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic receive funding, if not weaponry to defeat democracy in these countries.

Regime change is always bloody. There and here. Politicians, needless to day, past and still living presidents have blood on their hands.

The US’s use of the atomic bomb wiped out 129,000 in Hiroshima and 226,000 in Nagasaki. Most were civilians in both cities.

Democratically-elected heads of state in Africa and in South America are bad news to the beneficiaries (as opposed to the enslaved populations and low-wage laborers) of US capitalism. There’s a long list of US-backed regime changes that often resulted in initiating death and destruction in other countries.

In Guatemala, Jacobo Arbenz, democratically-elected is removed from leadership under the Eisenhower administration. Arbenz dared to announce land reforms to benefit his people, rather than US and European interests.

The first democratically-elected Congolese prime minister, Patrice Lumumba, is assassinated and replaced by a dictator more favorable to the US interests.

Salvador Allende, democratically-elected, is removed from office on September 11, 1973—ordered so by Nixon. The ouster brought in the murderous military reign of Pinochet.

Under Reagan’s leadership, the US backs the Contras in Nicaragua. According to America Watch (Human Rights Watch), among the atrocities committed by the Reagan Administration-sponsored Contras, include the raping of women, the torturing of civilians, the burning of civilian homes, and the “targeting of health care clinics and health care workers for assassination” (Wikipedia).

In the Korean War (a war my late uncle fought in), 58,220 Americans were killed and Korea lost 800,000 of its soldiers and 200,000 civilians.

In Vietnam, over nine million are killed as a result of the US going to war to defend freedom and democracy—somewhere. I don’t know where!

All the money designated to fight the latter war was siphoned from the War on Poverty that might have helped African Americans move forward, particularly after the struggles of civil rights’ activists (those who survived and those assassinated) to point to an America whose narrative is filled with huge lapses in memory. In the 1960s, at the start of the Vietnam War, lynching parties were still a happening and segregation kept African Americans relegated to the back of line. White privilege meant just that—white privilege. Membership is open to white immigrants from Europe.

Even if you were a Nazi, like Wernher von Braun, responsible for the deaths of Jewish laborers, forced to work and die, many of the, in the mine were von Braun’s team of engineers where building the V-2 rocket. You can enter and be escorted to the head of the line, directing the building, for NASA, the Saturn 5 rocket, the rocket that sent white men into space.

At home, once again, African Americans are forced to confront the American narrative—the one about hard working great-grandparents, grandparents, parents. African Americans are asked to lift themselves up: White America did it all—all by themselves! Find a way to do it! Figure it out! Hard-working people don’t have to lift a finger to help lazy—lazy—black people!

Here’s a piece of narrative not included in Biden’s story about hard-working relatives, since 2010, there have been 328 people executed in the US (Shupak). Each of these people had a narrative. What were those narratives? The US, Shupak writes, “has more people in jail per capita than any other country.” And we know that most are black and brown people.

People of color have been the target, for the most part, of US aggression, in and out of country. It always surprises me when white Americans don’t seem to take note of that. Most of those suffering in the world today are women and their children living the brunt of US violence, in and out of country. But this never comes up in Warren’s stories about her struggles to help these less—privileged.

In the Fiscal Year of 2019, the Department of Defense was allocated $649 billion. That’s billion with a “B.” According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, July 18, 2019, the US spends more on the maintenance of the military complex than 144 other countries.

China $250.000

Saudi Arabia $67.6

India $66.5

U.K. $54.8

France $52.3

Japan $45.6

Friends” and “foe” don’t like to spend so much on violence-producing—or rather, profit-producing—behavior. And attitudes! Mindset that keep the US from ever breaking free.

David Lazarus, journalist at the Los Angeles Times, notes that most Americans believe that those who don’t have good healthcare didn’t “work hard” and are, therefore, not deserving.


The US now spends, he writes, $3.6 trillion (with a “T”), per year on healthcare and “that translates to $36 trillion over the next decade.” Medicare-for-All, proposed by Bernie Sanders would cost $32 trillion in “new federal revenue over 10 years.”


But Wall Street, the banking industry, the military complex receive a form of socialism that is unfair and unequal. In other words, undemocratic because it leaves the lives of the 99% to the whims of a capitalist market. On the other hand, it’s not likely that proponents of democratic socialism would pander to war profiteers or politicians and their corporate enablers calling for regime change or the manufacturing of weapons to sell to law enforcement and other nations whether friend or foe.

According a Sept 2019 Census report, 8.5% of Americans are without health insurance—that is, 27. 5 million people. The Guardian reports that seven million fewer Americans have healthcare insurance now than did four years ago. The “only large, highly developed country,” the US, lacks universal health coverage!

The National Health Alliance for Hispanics reports that the Latinx community experiences the lowest number of people insured in the US. Under any healthcare crisis, personal or pandemic, this is unconscionable!

Oh, you see—free stuff for rapists and natural-born criminals! (That would be black Americans). Taking from us—hard-working Americans!

At The Intercept, a glaring headlines, dated March 13, 2020, “Big Pharma Prepares to Profit from the Coronavirus.” Quoting Gerald Posner, author of Pharma: Greed, Lies, and the Poisoning of America, the Coronavirus is a “once-in-a-lifetime” business opportunity.” Dozens of companies want in on the action! Providing tests kits and vaccines has become a competition.

But if you are still innocent and think it’s all for the good of the people, think again. What does US history teach us about the motivation of US corporations? Their goals aren’t to relief the suffering of fellow Americans. Their goals aren’t to save lives. It’s all about competition for profits!

They’re in the race for profits, Posner told The Intercept. “The global crisis ‘will potentially be a blockbuster for the industry in terms of sales and profits.’” Will this race worsen the crisis? Yes! “‘The worse the pandemic gets, the higher their eventual profit.’”

The world may have noticed how the stock market has responded to the pandemic as well as to the “leader” of the “highly developed” nation, going down almost daily. But for pharmaceutical those downward lines aren’t a problem! In fact, it’s great news for biotech companies, according to The Intercept report, such as Moderna. Great news, too, for Eli Lilly’s stocks, particularly after the company announced it would gladly join the race to develop testing and vaccines for the Coronavirus.

Good news for Joe Biden, too. “Joe Biden has led the pack among recipients of contributors from health care and pharmaceutical industries.”

And Biden supported the Iraqi war, too!

So what a future for America: Much like it’s past! And present! Editorial Board member and Columnist, Lenore Jean Daniels, PhD, has a Doctorate in Modern American Literature/Cultural Theory. Contact Dr. Daniels.
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