Pentagon Bucks and Masculinity’s Omega

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Whereas the planet grows hotter and its local weather extra lethal, we’re including to Earth’s refugee disaster by constructing and transporting extra bloodshed.

It’s time to speak about girls’s economics with perspective. It’s time to giggle at what is usually absurd and name out what’s harmful. By specializing in voices not usually a part of mainstream man-to-man financial discourse, Women Unscrewing Screwnomics will convey you information of hopeful and sensible modifications and have fun an financial system waged as life—not as conflict. 


The final letter of the Greek alphabet, Omega, which means the tip, can be extensively often called the image for conflict. Although the Greeks destroyed Troy greater than 3,000 years in the past, in the present day you’ll discover the image as a part of the title, emblem or trademark of scores of robust, masculinist innovations. Search for it in video video games like God of War, novels like Heroes of Olympus, the DC comedian sequence Darkseid, Las Vegas’s Meow Wolf’s Omega Mart artwork expertise, or the Omega Cost Administration System for electrical fleet automobiles.

The image seems on the mission patch for the STS-135 mission of the House Shuttle, and names quite a few theories and objects in physics, arithmetic, and pc science. Its spirit is embodied in that unforgettable skilled wrestler, Kenny Omega.

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An omega image dominates the duvet of DC’s Darkseid comedian guide (DC Comics); wrestler Kenny Omega embodies the image’s masculine spirit throughout a match.

In case you’ve missed the connections between actual males and conflict, now we have now a tune, written by male musicians celebrating Ukraine President Zelensky’s balls of iron. In the meantime, President Biden and excessive American officers are visibly becoming a member of forces with the invaded Ukrainians—not with boots on the bottom crammed by males with or with out balls of iron, however with billions in lethal armaments meant to kill Russians.

Julie Coleman at Business Insider stories the Pentagon has already pledged greater than $4 billion simply in heavy artillery, whereas Biden proposed a brand new late-April help package deal that features $20.4 billion for navy help for Ukraine and NATO allies. That’s on high of the $800 million in weapons and provides we despatched in early April. He guarantees extra, saying the U.S. has the capability to take action “for a very long time.” Take that, bare-chested bare-back-riding Putin.

Promised and delivered armaments have names straight out of a online game: Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, Javelin anti-tank weapons, Switchblade and Kamikazi drones, and different anti-armor techniques stored secret—together with Humvees, howitzers, helicopters and 50 million rounds of ammunition, $165 million price in response to Reuters.

That the Pentagon has a revolving golden door linking U.S. Protection Division officers with the arms business is an previous story a Republican president as soon as warned us about. Simply as acquainted is our two political events being fully at odds over voter rights, healthcare/reproductive rights and renewable power—whereas remaining remarkably bipartisan on the problem of Pentagon spending, a profitable export enterprise for firms like Raytheon and Lockheed Martin.

Final time period, even earlier than Ukraine was invaded, Congress outdid itself, upping the ante on Biden’s proposed $753 billion for protection and nationwide safety. Pondering that too dinky, Congress elevated that to $782 billion. In the meantime, pupil mortgage forgiveness and inexpensive healthcare remained out of attain for our nationwide funds.

As Sarah Lazar put it in a current In These Times article, when the 2022 Nationwide Protection Authorization Act set the navy funds, the Nationwide Protection Industrial Affiliation (NDIA) actually “gushed”—Lazar’s phrase—reassurances to company share-holders in patriotic-sounding war-speak: “The bipartisan votes show that nationwide protection and help for our service members stay unifying values.” (Unifying values is our cue to salute.) But when NDIA has values, they’re within the goldmine of publicly funded weapons’ provide, factors out Lazar.

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) would agree. In a current assembly of scores of organizations, lots of them peace organizations headed by girls like CodePink, WAND (Girls’s Motion for New Instructions), MADRE and Girls’s Worldwide League for Peace and Freedom, Warren warned activists to be ready for the protection business’s arguments about inflation—or in her phrases, “the time-honored custom of price-gouging.”  

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) speaks as U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen testifies at a Senate Banking, Housing and City Affairs Committee listening to on Could 10, 2022. Warren calls inventory buybacks market manipulation made to inflate govt pay. (Elizabeth Frantz-Pool / Getty Pictures)

She identified that final 12 months the U.S. spent seven and a half instances extra on Pentagon nukes than we have now on international vaccines to curb COVID. The most recent protection package deal requires $50.9 billion in nuclear weapons, whereas massive protection contractors who revenue from their gross sales have spent $15.5 billion on inventory buybacks, in response to Warren. As soon as outlawed, inventory buybacks make firms look extra helpful for traders than they’re—and your financial institution, your insurance coverage firm, your pension, might be placing your cash there, rising what you’re already risking together with your taxes.

Investing in weapons is like trusting in a home of playing cards, overdue for a common collapse and destruction that seldom makes headlines, particularly the price of a weapons business ducking duty for damages it creates together with massive cash. We see the images of Ukraine each day now, its fertile food-producing fields and its forests blown up and poisoned—too just like the images of Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Afghanistan, the place burn pits and poisonous mud and deadly water have led to veterans’ sickness and civilian cancers and delivery defects.

Whereas the planet grows hotter and its local weather extra lethal, we’re including to Earth’s refugee disaster by constructing and transporting extra bloodshed. The U.S. Protection Division is the world’s single largest institutional shopper of oil, in response to Brown University’s Costs of War project, which makes DoD the world’s high greenhouse fuel emitter. DoD’s personal Local weather Threat Evaluation predicts dire environmental results, analyzed for issues it creates for war-waging.

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(Costs of War Project)

Frontline’s current sequence on massive oil makes abysmally clear that performative B.S. is a honed manly talent extra extensively displayed than in wrestling rings and the Pentagon. One other path of analysis and growth at ExxonMobil underway forty years in the past would have made the U.S. a world chief in different power however was commonly dismissed by senior VP for Analysis and Engineering, Lee Raymond. Why? As a result of making a living with oil was slicker and simpler. (Watch the PBS series and listen to him for your self.)

In the mean time none of this will matter to the folks of Ukraine who’re combating for his or her lives. President Zelensky does present us what an actual chief could be, standing along with his folks to satisfy a duty to maintain them protected. In contrast, you might say the salesmen of the Pentagon, NDIA and massive oil, making offers at nation golf equipment like the previous president, have golf balls beneath their fats bellies. You possibly can even say love of cash trumps love of nation every time a bro-mance fantasy of greatness via conflict feeds an financial system waged as conflict—a mindset by no means extra seen than now.

Whereas the navy industrial advanced has been round since Eisenhower, till now its apex was reached by the previous administration, which additionally emptied out girly diplomats on the secretary of state’s workplace. Cash spent there may need prevented this fiasco, together with substantive negotiations and peace incentives with Russia, Ukraine, and NATO. Teaching non-violent resistance may need helped and will nonetheless be helpful right here within the U.S.

However diplomats are out of fashion in Washington nowadays, and actual males, together with Marjorie Taylor Inexperienced, are busy at work bluffing their approach with a masculinist phantasm that robust discuss and iron balls on the mind will win—however to what Omega finish precisely?

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