Saturday, December 11, 2010

Why Are Our Officials Silent about the Wars?



I write to you as a resident of Ward 3 to express my curiosity regarding the way our mayor and other city officials handled their recent ward meetings. Their presentations were excellent, clear and factual—very professional. Importantly, they confronted the shortage of funds to carry out all of the needs of our community.

But they did not explain it, and that made me curious. Why were they silent about the major cause of our budget shortfalls—the cost of the two wars in Afghanistan and Iraq of $4 to 6 billion (est. by Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Bilmes in their The Three Trillion Dollars War). We borrow $2 billion a day from China to pay for those wars.

Here’s a small example of those costs: one type of drone aircraft, the Global Hawk unmanned reconnaissance plane, costs the taxpayers $11.1 billion for 77 planes, the per-aircraft procurement cost having increased 11 percent to $100.8 million since the project began in 2000. (ADG 9-16-10).

A democracy depends upon informed citizens. How can we make budgetary decisions, when our own officials keep causes of financial shortages secret? Or are they uninformed? Or is there some other explanation?

Please ask our officials why they are silent about these immense expenditures for wars, wars that are illegal, based upon lies, and have killed so many innocent women and children and our own soldiers, when that money could do so much good for Arkansas and for Fayetteville. Think of it: Arkansas taxpayers have so far paid $4.9 billion for the Iraq war alone, and Fayetteville $147,367,209, and for the war in Afghanistan $73,190,500. How can our officials remain silent? And you our Council members?

Thank you,
Dick Bennett
STOP Wars and Warming:
My blog:
(479) 442-4600
2582 Jimmie Ave.
Fayetteville, AR 72703

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Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)