Is it Time to Separate American Interests from Business Interests?

In a Fox News op-ed Lloyd Green Campaign Secretary for George H.W. Bush, asked whether in view of White House Chief and Retired Marine General Kelly’s impassioned speech about respect for the military, it might be time for those critical of the military to once again have a “little skin in the game” through mandatory national military service, or a draft.

There was a time when I floated that idea.  I no longer feel so, but not, possibly, for the reasons you might think.

I am a combat veteran.  My father was a combat veteran.  My brother is a veteran of two different conflicts; Vietnam and Desert Storm.  It is not that I am opposed to American’s serving their country.  In fact I think that young Americans should have a time of National Service serving in agencies like Americorps, or in military service if they choose. It would give young people a sense of belonging, time to grow up away from home, and the opportunity to attend to the needs of others..

 However, over the past decades the nature of our conflicts, the nature of our society, and the nature of business have changed making it hard for me to support a draft or mandatory military service.

In a time when the military was composed of “us”; all of us, we thought in terms of defense of our homeland and its people.  When politicians talked of protecting America’s interests it was clear that they meant business interests, but we thought then that business success ultimately helped all Americans.  And, into the 1960s and 1970s that was true to a large extent. The Vietnam war ended that belief for many.  It was not clear how the average American could profit from supporting one side in a civil war being waged on the other side of the world.  Our leaders raised the bogeyman of communism in order to convince us that we needed to fight half way around the world.  Communists were portrayed as anti-capitalist atheists.

Additionally, it became clear that those with money and influence did not go to war.  The war was being fought by the poor and minorities.  So, due to widespread opposition, the military went to an all-volunteer military.

Increasingly over the past four decades, business has ceased to serves all Americans.  Service jobs have gone abroad, manufacturing has gone abroad, and, more importantly, domestic manufacturing and service jobs have been automated.  The success of a U.S. business does not necessarily mean that Americans do better. We can no longer say, "What's good for business is good for America."

Additionally, we have to ask ourselves how an American business is defined.  Like cruise ships that may employ Indians and Eastern Europeans, be headquartered in Florida, and fly a Bahamian flag, American businesses may have a headquarters in the U.S., employ individuals on the Pacific rim, and have an actual corporate address that is a post office box in a small town in Switzerland.  They pay corporate taxes elsewhere, employ workers elsewhere and yet call themselves an American business.

Corporations hide behind their stockholders claiming, rightly, that they have to attend to their shareholders profits.  Well and good, but Americans should not have to go to war, or pay taxes to pay for military expenditures in their stock-holders behalf.

What to do?  What about having a “home guard” military that requires national service for everyone; a military that cannot be deployed elsewhere, that is paid for out of taxes, and requires service without deferral. .  Conversely, businesses would have a mercenary army serving the interests of businesses around the world, with no national affiliation. Businesses might get U.S. monetary support in proportion to the number of U.S. full time employees with benefits utilized and U.S. corporate taxes paid.  Otherwise, they could fund their wars themselves.

The details would have to be worked out.  You might have Exxon/Mobil’s army fighting BP’s, but more likely Exxon/Mobil/BP’s army would be fighting the Russian Oligarchs’ army or something more outlandish.

Whatever the case, the increased cost of an oil company’s  gasoline secondary to the cost of fighting their own wars might make renewable energy more attractive, and that would just be one of the benefits of separating the interests of America from the interests of business.

On the negative side, I can see an Exxon/Mobile/BP/Russian Oligarchs' army attempting to invade the U.S. to destroy windmills and the "home guard" having to hold them off.

All I know is the system is not really working for Americans as it is.

Views: 375

Comment by koshersalaami on October 23, 2017 at 8:14am

This is a really interesting idea. I've liked the idea of mandatory national service for years because everyone needs to get used to the idea of serving our country as a country. We're already using a lot of mercenaries as it is, and privatizing the costs is a novel approach. 

A corporate army that invaded America should result in that company being nationalized.

Comment by Rodney Roe on October 23, 2017 at 8:29am

Just the thought of being nationalized would set a business’s hair on fire. Great idea.

Comment by Arthur James on October 23, 2017 at 9:00am

`
HUGA TO SNOOPY?
GIVE YA'S BROTHER
A BARE? BEER? no.
BIG HUG. TWO TOURS!
`!

I'LL SEE YOU ` a `GIN
WHEN SPRING BREAKS INTO
COOL BREEZES.
DUKE ELLINGTON
SAID ` IT DON"T MEAN A
THINK IF IT AIN'T GOT THAT SWING'
`
BUMBLE BEE PEES @ BP.NO LEACE FLEAS
ON LATRINE TOILET SEAT. LEAVE LICE.
FLUSH COMMODE AT OUR SALON. OKAY.
`
BEST TO YOUR BRO. HE"D BE FUN
TO VISIT VAMC WITH & BURY 7-UP
AFTER A SIX PACK OF ` SWEET
BABY JESUS ` BEER BREWED
BY THE DC CLAW BREWERY.
`

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on October 23, 2017 at 9:31am

RR, I won't thank you and your family for your military service... but I will apologize for it.

As for requiring everyone to have a “little skin in the game”?  I think that should be based upon income/net worth.  The Trump boys and girls need to be front line troops, the CEOs of Raytheon, Lockheed & General Dynamics should be given the very first suicide missions and every Congress person who ever voted for more "War for oil" or has accepted a nickel from the MIC should be forced to endure endless drone strikes guided by crippled children from Syria, Gaza and Afghanistan.

Comment by Arthur James on October 23, 2017 at 9:43am

`

Amy I agree...

I always say` I opposed

the bloody killing other'

Humans in war. I was

drafted. FBI handcuffed

war vets who went AWOL

from basic training back

then... I act calm, not

argumentative but

tell folk War is Evil.

`

Gads...

We still allow WAR

Mongers to walk

`round Y be on

LOCO MEDIA TV.

`

I bet Trump Kissinger Chaney

etc never fixed a flat tire or

learned how to kiss in the days

of the Beetles...

`

Oil &

Poppies

for sale

Bloody

Murders.

`

Um Go to Hell.

I choose to

Believe that.

`

Comment by Arthur James on October 23, 2017 at 9:54am

`

Hope I not annoying...

`

Daily Kos - Rachel

Madddox has article titled:

`

Brilliant Analysis ref Niger

( takedown ) turns FOX

News Heads to Mush.

`

I downloaded for

slow Home read.

`

Comment by Rodney Roe on October 23, 2017 at 10:17am

Amy, no apology required.

The Lying, cowardly men in power have been using and killing for their own profit since the beginning of time. It’s how European colonies got formed. Our involvement in Vietnam is the indirect result of French merchants requesting military support on “Indchine”. I don’t need to give more examples. 

I maintain that only combat veterans should be allowed to send troops to war. If Trump declares war Jared Kushner should be the first to go. 

Comment by Arthur James on October 23, 2017 at 10:23am

`

Good comment to share...

Combat troops would not

send fellow humans to

die in a blood bath.

`

Wise stuff Here...

`

The Wizard of Oz

`'

Somewhere over the rainbow

Bluebirds fly.

Birds fly over the rainbow -

Why can't I? '

`

Steceb Vincent Benet

`Sherman's buzzin'

along to the sea,

Like Moses ridin'

on a bumblebee '

`

Comment by Arthur James on October 23, 2017 at 10:27am

`

I betn  & was right

ABG 2 Deleted `gin.

Cowards hide & soon

have Panic Attacks

because ` um nasty

& cowardly... ? Yep 

`

Comment by koshersalaami on October 23, 2017 at 10:33am

Why should Jared go before Donald Jr., Eric, or Ivanka? 

Comment

You need to be a member of Our Salon to add comments!

Join Our Salon

NEW BLOG POSTS

Trump embarrasses Baron

Posted by Dicky Neely on November 22, 2017 at 8:06pm 0 Comments

Lump of Coal For Christmas

Posted by Robert Young on November 22, 2017 at 11:00am 4 Comments

Minority Report, part the third

Posted by Robert Young on November 22, 2017 at 10:55am 2 Comments

Two Rifles, One Window

Posted by alsoknownas on November 22, 2017 at 7:21am 9 Comments

The Song- a poem

Posted by Phyllis on November 21, 2017 at 5:51pm 8 Comments

Would It Matter?

Posted by alsoknownas on November 21, 2017 at 8:00am 20 Comments

© 2017   Created by lorianne.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Privacy Policy  |  Terms of Service