In the corporate/banking world the term “stakeholder” is used to describe investors who are given special preferred treatment. How does this exclusionary perspective compare with a government that is charged with the responsibility to look at and after all Americans as “stakeholders”? In the 1950s American President Dwight David Eisenhower warned the American people about the “Military-Industrial-Complex;” a structure that through corporate lobbying efforts has leveraged Congress to suit its agenda for monetary gain.
The “Military-Industrial-Complex” took firm root in Vietnam as America’s first corporatized war.
A reflection of this misplaced power is a lack of transparency of what Washington really spends for defense; the claim 500 billion dollars falls far short of indicators that show a figure closer to one trillion dollars. To understand the magnitude and accuracy of the trillion dollar budget one needs to look at the more than one thousand U.S. military bases around the world that cost tens of billions of dollars a month to maintain.
The absurd misplaced military priorities of North Korea that bleed the life lines of its people, exacerbating the problem hunger and malnutrition, is a prime example of how governments stray from looking after their people as “stakeholders” in society. The fact that one out five children in America go to bed hungry every night is highlighted by concerted efforts from Republicans to cut already desperately stretched social programs.
The cuts proposed to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and Veteran’s benefits are directly tied to continuing a defense budget that far exceeds the boundaries of what is essential, what is needed to defend the country, and its primary “stakeholder,” three hundred million plus Americans.
— Joseph Borrajo