OP-ED: War is (still) a racket!
OP-ED: War is (still) a racket!
By Jolian Kangas, Candidate for US Representative
The Cold War supposedly ended somewhere between the years 1989-1991. I barely remember watching Peter Jennings’ coverage of the Berlin Wall getting obliterated, and the last-gasp Soviet coup attempt against Gorby. As a millennial with a (maybe more than) passing interest in politics, I read Francis Fukuyama’s essay The End of History as being the definitive conclusion to all world events of consequence. The US won; let’s give it up for the “Last Superpower.”
Yet here we are, in 2023, and we’re still living under the shadow of a menacing Kremlin. We’re still rooting for the “West” in Geopolitics: The Game Show, the latest tragic installment of which is playing out in Israel today. We’re still spending money on military aid and overseas installations and interventions like we haven’t been writing IOUs to the Chinese for the better part of the last quarter-century. The President just asked for over $100 Billion to subsidize these forever wars, and our Congressman is in lockstep support, like the reliable party back-bencher he is.
The problem is, no matter how far in debt we go to fund these internationalist projects, nothing ever gets resolved. Conflicts in those regions have continued on-and-off for centuries. Terrorism continues unabated, grudges passed down from one generation to the next. Lives are lost, ecosystems destroyed, natural resources squandered for eternity in the violent throes of ideological clashes. No hearts are won, no minds are changed, and at the end of it all, you and I are footing the bill.
Democrats want to hand over our money to foreign nations with no conditions. Republicans insist upon militarizing the southern border and further dehumanizing migrants before they, too, will sign on to this scheme. Meanwhile, ordinary people like you and I worry about our access to healthcare. A hospital in our district just abruptly severed coverage through the region’s largest insurance plan. A chronic lack of trauma centers continues to cause otherwise preventable deaths due to accident and injury.
Missing from the impassioned debates over the Middle East and Russia are the plights of everyday Americans. Aren’t there far more pressing priorities we could be funding instead? People are sprawled out on the streets, living in filth, starving and dying from untreated ailments in communities all along the North Coast. How can we justify spending our tax dollars (and our debt-dollars) on more bombs to blow up civilians overseas?
Answer: we can’t. That’s why I’m running to represent the North Coast in Congress. The Cold War should remain a distant and fading memory, not a manufactured specter continually lingering over foreign policy. Our Congressman and his colleagues are stuck in the past. I’m looking towards a future that’s sustainable for people and the planet.
Let’s get back to sensible and affordable public policy. On March 5, you have a chance to send a message to the partisan establishment. I’m Jolian Kangas, and I’m your Independent candidate for US Representative. Join me at kangas4congress.org.