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Total Warfare Politics

Introduction      

After World War II America had emerged as the hegemonic power in the world.  Hegemonic is the polite term, the academic term, for empire.  Empire defines the need for large armed forces and high military spending.  High military spending is the principal internal condition for the long-term self-destruction of empire.  Empire Economics or Peace Economics are my trademark names for explaining the scientific political and mechanical processes that collectively unfold over time when high levels of military spending have caused the manufacturing decline, the rise of crime rates, and the political corruption of a declining empire society.  I have called this paper “Total Warfare Politics” to begin to explain how the current dysfunctional political system in the United States is a direct function of increasing pressures from the forces of empire and militarism over time.

Political Corruption

Thanks to the weakened economy that results from high levels of military spending, conservative arguments are made stronger.  Restraint in spending seems the logical answer to more limited resources.  Military spending correlates well with crime murder and corruption rates.  High military parts of the country are more corrupt than low military parts of the country.  High military nations are more crime ridden than low military nations among the advanced economies.  A prolonged state of high military spending empire tends to increase the political rigidity of the system.  Constrained systems are prone to corruption and control.

Total Warfare Politics

Total warfare politics grows out of several traditions of militarism and has been taken to the extreme by the party closest to the military budget in its loyalties.  Because of the concept of unconditional surrender, coming out of the Second World War, extremism began to be seen as patriotic.  The nature of militarism, treating others as enemies, creates an atmosphere of depersonalization and lack of concern for others.  All this makes it easier for those leaning towards criminality to take the next step.  When you have less concern for others, it is easier to commit crimes against them.  Wartime tactics of demonizing your enemy can then start to creep into more and more of the culture.  With the rise of hate radio in the culture, especially so-called conservative radio, political opponents are ever more easily vilified, including demonizing the very concept of liberalism.  When women, immigrants, blacks, Muslims, gays, and abortionists are all demonized routinely, by the far right, political disagreement has gone over the edge to the dark side.  Starting with Barry Goldwater’s states rights, and subsequent campaigns of the political right, dog whistles were the way to divide and conquer, but along came Trump who did away with the dog whistles and other political correctness to tell it like it is, as the right has come to see the world.

Balkanization of the Culture

Ever since Ronald Reagan abolished the equal time standard in 1987 for media that used the airwaves, we have moved into a more and more divided society.  We can now choose the news we want to follow, reinforcing our beliefs.  The internet has reinforced these tendencies.  The production of fake news stories has made open lying more acceptable.  Polls show that 74% believe the fake news compared to 83% who believe the mainstream news.   Politifact, a nonpartisan group that evaluates political claims, found that 72% of Donald Trump claims were false, compared to 28% of Bernie Sanders claims, and 27% of Hillary Clinton claims.  The other Republicans were all in between these extremes.

Current War on the Democrats

Although Goldwater and Nixon started things out with states rights and the Southern Strategy respectively, Reagan began the modern right wing movement.  Reagan fired the striking PATCO aircraft controllers in 1981 that had supported him in his 1980 election.  Reagan also stacked the labor regulatory institutions with people determined to destroy unions.  Since unions were an important part of the Democratic Party election machinery, this was a direct attempt to disarm the Democrats politically.  Likewise, the school choice movement was designed to diminish teachers unions and increase Republican contributors.  Indeed, prison privatization and all privatization attempts are trying to eliminate funding for Democratic support groups and replace it with funding for Republican support groups.  Voter ID laws and restrictions are direct attempts to stop more Democrats than Republicans from voting.  Court cases have described some of these efforts as having surgical precision.  These efforts all contributed to the rightward swing in the key Republican controlled swing states of Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Ohio and Florida.  Only Virginia, controlled by Democrats, resisted this tide.

Supreme Court Control

Since 1969, for 47 years, the Supreme Court has become more conservative.  This all out assault against the left wing began with in the Bush v Gore decision to install George Bush as president in 2000.  The Citizens United decision of 2010 allowed unlimited campaign spending the year Republicans took control of most states just in time to redistrict and lock in their majorities for ten years.  And the voting rights partial repeal in 2013 had lead to changes in voting laws that allowed Trump to carry the Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Ohio and Florida swing states.  Redistricting was so extreme that Republican majorities are locked-in in congress and about 30 state legislatures until at least 2020.  Fair play has gone out the window whenever the pendulum tries to swing back.  Abuses under Clinton have gotten much worse under Obama.  The concept of a presidential honeymoon has all but disappeared.  The filibuster requiring a 60% vote in the Senate has gone from rare to routine to block Obama in congress.  This extended to an unprecedented delay in filling the Supreme Court vacancy last February.

Conservatives Aren’t Conservative Anymore

Conservatives are not the party of resistance to progress, they are determined to roll things back and destroy the Democratic Party at all costs.  They have routinely added to the size of government and the deficit, by increasing the military far more than any domestic cuts and cutting taxes despite record deficits.  Carter slowed the deficit, and then Clinton and Obama have lowered the deficit.  Reagan tripled the deficit, quadrupled if you include the Bush term after Reagan.  Bush doubled the deficit, tripled if you include the recession started by Bush that carried over into Obama’s first year.  Conservatives take the free ride of tax cuts without spending decreases, while Democrats try to be responsible and end up paying a price for their responsibility, getting little or not credit from the media for sacrificing.

Dynamics of the military presidency:

https://www.academia.edu/20604100/POLITICAL_Military_Presidency_1999_7p

Power Point of the Stages of Empire:

https://www.academia.edu/5415354/STAGES_of_EMPIRE_Twelve._15_ppt._3_p._2007

Dr. Robert Reuschlein, Dr. Peace, Real Economy Institute,

Nominated and vetted for the Nobel Peace Prize 2016,

Contact  bobreuschlein@gmail.com

Info www.realeconomy.com

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