Have we become dis-united?

February 4, 2014

In his thought-provoking letter to the editor in the Jan. 23 edition of the Marlboro Herald-Advocate of Bennettsville, S.C., Jack Swann wrote: “While we live in the United States of America, we have become the Dis-United States of America. It seems that top-level politicians (who are supposed to represent the people), can’t seem to be united in anything, except their own interests.”

How true! And what are “their own interests?” Wouldn’t that be the interests of those who provide enormous campaign contributions? After all, hasn’t our federal election process digressed into a quid-pro-quo “I’ll finance your election if you will introduce legislation advantageous to my business interests?” Can “the people” make exorbitant campaign contributions in exchange for special legislative consideration?

How many thousands, if not millions, of “the people” have been displaced by globalization legislation, which allows American corporations to exploit the cheap labor of third-world countries and U.S. markets simultaneously? How many store buildings in our regional towns now sit empty because the factories and mills that once employed their customers now sit empty?

Didn’t political leaders obligated by tremendous campaign contributions from the military industrial complex follow private industry dictation, resulting in our troops “cutting and running” to Iraq, rather than “staying the course” in Afghanistan? Have America’s political leaders seriously investigated the 95 percent of the $9.1 billion in Iraqi reconstruction funds that are unaccounted for?

I continually see and hear TV and radio advertisements asking us to contribute $19 per month to the Wounded Warrior’s Project, because military benefits are not sufficient to aid our wounded veterans. If we were not so dis-united, if our politicians were not so obedient to campaign contributors, might we collectively demand reimbursement for the billions of our tax dollars special interests received in advance for never completed, if ever started, no-bid contracts, and use those funds to pay for the medical needs of our veterans wounded in Iraq?

After all, did members of the military industrial complex, or their relatives, join our military and share in the human cost, or remain safely stateside and collect enormous profits?

Mr. Swann quoted a warning that greed is a greater threat to our nation than bombs. Do you remember the saying, “United we stand, divided we fall?” Has the “Dis-United States of America” fallen into the greedy hands of political manipulators, who play us against each other and reap tremendous economic rewards from our division as a result?

Think about it, please.

Robert C. Currie Jr.