Pentagon

By: Judy Elliott on April 30, 2015

Today Americans for Peace Prosperity and Security (APPS), a military-industrial complex advocacy organization, launched a National Security Forum for Presidential candidates. Pentagon contractors sit on APPS Advisory Board.

Is this another case of Governing Under the Influence?

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By: Arnie Alpert on April 25, 2015

Pentagon reliance on private contractors creates an incentive for war, Lawrence Wilkerson told several New Hampshire audiences on a recent speaking tour.  Wilkerson, a retired US Army Colonel who served as Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, said the military-industrial-complex has become "the principal influence on national security and ultimately on foreign policy decision-making." 

“If it’s going to change, it’s going to require you,” Wilkerson said.  “It’s going to require the American people getting sick and tired of their republic getting stolen by the few, by the wealthy few, by the plutocracy.“

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By: Matt Nosco on April 23, 2015
Carly Fiorina 2014 - Photo by Gage Skidmore
Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina will be throwing her name in the Presidential hopeful ring in the coming weeks. When I asked her about the excessive corporate influence from Pentagon contractors like Northrop Grumman in the political system during her rally in Ames, she responded, "Here's my formula: Either everyone gets to play or no one gets to play."
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By: Arnie Alpert on April 20, 2015
William Hartung at Mancheste talk

In 1961, President Dwight Eisenhower warned Americans that the rise of “a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions" posed a grave threat to American democracy.  Fifty-four years later, the warning still rings true.  As William Hartung explained on a recent New Hampshire speaking tour, corporations that earn billions from contracts to sell weapons to the Pentagon keep the profits flowing with campaign donations, lobbyists, a lucrative revolving door for military officers and civilian government officials, and even major gifts to the charities favored by the spouses of key members of Congress.  Eisenhower's call for an "alert and knowledgable citizenry" has as much urgency as ever.  

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By: Kevin Rutledge on April 10, 2015
Senator Rand Paul Iowa City Ignore Question
After presidential candidate Senator Rand Paul spoke at University of Iowa and said "Every war is not a good war to be involved in," I tried to ask a question on his amendment for a $190 billion increase to the Pentagon budget in 2016, but he turned away. Given the influence of the military industrial complex on public policy, I hope others will have the chance to raise this question at future events.
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By: Eric Zulaski on March 19, 2015

Why do we need you to get involved in the frenzy of presidential politics? Here are three reasons to get out and ask a question the next time you hear a candidate is coming to town.

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By: Arnie Alpert on March 9, 2015
Lindsey Graham had an extended back-and-forth with voters in his first "testing the waters" trip to New Hampshire. The South Carolina Senator spoke at length about immigration, elaborated on his hawkish views on the Middle East, and expressed support for campaign finance reform.
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By: Kevin Rutledge on February 19, 2015
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders calls out wasteful spending on military, fraud and government settlements from defense contractors, wants to make judicious cuts, and if president he would audit the Department of Defense - who can't keep track of where money is going.
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By: Raed Jarrar on February 3, 2015

This week we’ll hear proposals to massively increase military spending in the face of last year’s outcries about “draconian” cuts to our defense budget and criticism of “out of control” spending on public services. But don’t be fooled by the hyperbole. In fact, our military budget, still at historically unprecedented highs, was cut by less than one percent last year. The president’s proposed FY16 budget again preserves our outsized military spending while continuing a long, dangerous trend of underfunding human needs.

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By: Arnie Alpert on February 3, 2015
Bernie Sanders speaks at a house party in Concord
In the crowded dining room of an old Victorian house in Concord, NH, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders told listeners the country's problems include but go well beyond the military-industrial-complex. "You are taking on a ruling class in every area," he said. Cutting military spending is one component of an agenda to restore the middle class and turn away from oligarchy.
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