Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Fwd: [v911t] Major General Smedley D. Butler ----"WAR IS A RACKET" / Our PAID-PUBLIC-SERVANTS in the MILITARY-INDUSTRIAL-COMPLEX have been serving the WTO RACKETEERS instead of the PUBLIC

USA POLITICAL PARTIES (in the USA FAKE "DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC")
WTO PARTIES: (100% REPRESENTATION IN USA GOVERNMENT):

REPUBLICAN PARTY = NAZI-FASCIST OIL-EMPIRE PARTY

DEMOCRATIC PARTY = NAZI-FASCIST-OIL-EMPIRE-COLLABORATOR PARTY


ALL OTHER PARTIES: (0% REPRESENTATION IN USA GOVERNMENT):

SOCIALIST PARTY = FEEBLY STRUGGLING FOR FREEDOM

LIBERTARIAN PARTY = FEEBLY STRUGGLING FOR FREEDOM

LIBERAL PARTY = FEEBLY STRUGGLING FOR FREEDOM

CONSERVATIVE PARTY = FEEBLY STRUGGLING FOR FREEDOM

Etc….Etc…Etc…

GREEN PARTY = FEEBLY STRUGGLING FOR FREEDOM and for SURVIVAL OF LIFE
ON
EARTH (ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION from WTO PARTIES)

(I am voting for CYNTHIA MCKINNEY ---our GREEN PARTY 911TRUTH HERO ---
--even
though I know that my VOTE WON'T COUNT).

Subject: [v911t] Major General Smedley D. Butler


http://lexrex.com/enlightened/articles/warisaracket.htm


WAR IS A RACKET

by Two-Time Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient

Major General Smedley D. Butler - USMC Retired

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smedley_Butler About the Author

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smedley_Butler

CHAPTER ONE

WAR IS A RACKET

WAR is a racket. It always has been.

It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most
vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only
one in
which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what
it
seems to the majority of the people. Only a small "inside" group
knows what
it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the
expense
of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

In the World War [I] a mere handful garnered the profits of the
conflict. At
least 21,000 new millionaires and billionaires were made in the United
States during the World War. That many admitted their huge blood
gains in
their income tax returns. How many other war millionaires falsified
their
tax returns no one knows.

How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle? How many of
them dug
a trench? How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-
infested
dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking
shells
and shrapnel and machine gun bullets? How many of them parried a
bayonet
thrust of an enemy? How many of them were wounded or killed in battle?

Out of war nations acquire additional territory, if they are
victorious.
They just take it. This newly acquired territory promptly is
exploited by
the few – the selfsame few who wrung dollars out of blood in the war.
The
general public shoulders the bill.

And what is this bill?

This bill renders a horrible accounting. Newly placed gravestones.
Mangled
bodies. Shattered minds. Broken hearts and homes. Economic
instability.
Depression and all its attendant miseries. Back-breaking taxation for
generations and generations.

For a great many years, as a soldier, I had a suspicion that war was a
racket; not until I retired to civil life did I fully realize it. Now
that I
see the international war clouds gathering, as they are today, I must
face
it and speak out.

Again they are choosing sides. France and Russia met and agreed to
stand
side by side. Italy and Austria hurried to make a similar agreement.
Poland
and Germany cast sheep's eyes at each other, forgetting for the nonce
[one
unique occasion], their dispute over the Polish Corridor.

The assassination of King Alexander of Jugoslavia [Yugoslavia]
complicated
matters. Jugoslavia and Hungary, long bitter enemies, were almost at
each
other's throats. Italy was ready to jump in. But France was waiting.
So was
Czechoslovakia. All of them are looking ahead to war. Not the people –
not
those who fight and pay and die – only those who foment wars and
remain
safely at home to profit.

There are 40,000,000 men under arms in the world today, and our
statesmen
and diplomats have the temerity to say that war is not in the making.

Hell's bells! Are these 40,000,000 men being trained to be dancers?

Not in Italy, to be sure. Premier Mussolini knows what they are being
trained for. He, at least, is frank enough to speak out. Only the
other day,
Il Duce in "International Conciliation," the publication of the
Carnegie
Endowment for International Peace, said:

"And above all, Fascism, the more it considers and observes the
future and
the development of humanity quite apart from political considerations
of the
moment, believes neither in the possibility nor the utility of
perpetual
peace... War alone brings up to its highest tension all human energy
and
puts the stamp of nobility upon the people who have the courage to
meet it."

Undoubtedly Mussolini means exactly what he says. His well-trained
army, his
great fleet of planes, and even his navy are ready for war – anxious
for it,
apparently. His recent stand at the side of Hungary in the latter's
dispute
with Jugoslavia showed that. And the hurried mobilization of his
troops on
the Austrian border after the assassination of Dollfuss showed it
too. There
are others in Europe too whose sabre rattling presages war, sooner or
later.

Herr Hitler, with his rearming Germany and his constant demands for
more and
more arms, is an equal if not greater menace to peace. France only
recently
increased the term of military service for its youth from a year to
eighteen
months.

Yes, all over, nations are camping in their arms. The mad dogs of
Europe are
on the loose. In the Orient the maneuvering is more adroit. Back in
1904,
when Russia and Japan fought, we kicked out our old friends the
Russians and
backed Japan. Then our very generous international bankers were
financing
Japan. Now the trend is to poison us against the Japanese. What does
the
"open door" policy to China mean to us? Our trade with China is about
$90,000,000 a year. Or the Philippine Islands? We have spent about
$600,000,000 in the Philippines in thirty-five years and we (our
bankers and
industrialists and speculators) have private investments there of
less than
$200,000,000.

Then, to save that China trade of about $90,000,000, or to protect
these
private investments of less than $200,000,000 in the Philippines, we
would
be all stirred up to hate Japan and go to war – a war that might well
cost
us tens of billions of dollars, hundreds of thousands of lives of
Americans,
and many more hundreds of thousands of physically maimed and mentally
unbalanced men.

Of course, for this loss, there would be a compensating profit –
fortunes
would be made. Millions and billions of dollars would be piled up. By
a few.
Munitions makers. Bankers. Ship builders. Manufacturers. Meat packers.
Speculators. They would fare well.

Yes, they are getting ready for another war. Why shouldn't they? It
pays
high dividends.

But what does it profit the men who are killed? What does it profit
their
mothers and sisters, their wives and their sweethearts? What does it
profit
their children?

What does it profit anyone except the very few to whom war means huge
profits?

Yes, and what does it profit the nation?

Take our own case. Until 1898 we didn't own a bit of territory
outside the
mainland of North America. At that time our national debt was a
little more
than $1,000,000,000. Then we became "internationally minded." We
forgot, or
shunted aside, the advice of the Father of our country. We forgot
George
Washington's warning about "entangling alliances." We went to war. We
acquired outside territory. At the end of the World War period, as a
direct
result of our fiddling in international affairs, our national debt had
jumped to over $25,000,000,000. Our total favorable trade balance
during the
twenty-five-year period was about $24,000,000,000. Therefore, on a
purely
bookkeeping basis, we ran a little behind year for year, and that
foreign
trade might well have been ours without the wars.

It would have been far cheaper (not to say safer) for the average
American
who pays the bills to stay out of foreign entanglements. For a very
few this
racket, like bootlegging and other underworld rackets, brings fancy
profits,
but the cost of operations is always transferred to the people – who
do not
profit.

CHAPTER TWO

WHO MAKES THE PROFITS?

The World War, rather our brief participation in it, has cost the
United
States some $52,000,000,000. Figure it out. That means $400 to every
American man, woman, and child. And we haven't paid the debt yet. We
are
paying it, our children will pay it, and our children's children
probably
still will be paying the cost of that war.

The normal profits of a business concern in the United States are six,
eight, ten, and sometimes twelve percent. But war-time profits – ah!
that is
another matter – twenty, sixty, one hundred, three hundred, and even
eighteen hundred per cent – the sky is the limit. All that traffic
will
bear. Uncle Sam has the money. Let's get it.

Of course, it isn't put that crudely in war time. It is dressed into
speeches about patriotism, love of country, and "we must all put our
shoulders to the wheel," but the profits jump and leap and skyrocket –
and
are safely pocketed. Let's just take a few examples:

Take our friends the du Ponts, the powder people – didn't one of them
testify before a Senate committee recently that their powder won the
war? Or
saved the world for democracy? Or something? How did they do in the
war?
They were a patriotic corporation. Well, the average earnings of the
du
Ponts for the period 1910 to 1914 were $6,000,000 a year. It wasn't
much,
but the du Ponts managed to get along on it. Now let's look at their
average
yearly profit during the war years, 1914 to 1918. Fifty-eight million
dollars a year profit we find! Nearly ten times that of normal times,
and
the profits of normal times were pretty good. An increase in profits
of more
than 950 per cent.

Take one of our little steel companies that patriotically shunted
aside the
making of rails and girders and bridges to manufacture war materials.
Well,
their 1910-1914 yearly earnings averaged $6,000,000. Then came the
war. And,
like loyal citizens, Bethlehem Steel promptly turned to munitions
making.
Did their profits jump – or did they let Uncle Sam in for a bargain?
Well,
their 1914-1918 average was $49,000,000 a year!

Or, let's take United States Steel. The normal earnings during the
five-year
period prior to the war were $105,000,000 a year. Not bad. Then along
came
the war and up went the profits. The average yearly profit for the
period
1914-1918 was $240,000,000. Not bad.

There you have some of the steel and powder earnings. Let's look at
something else. A little copper, perhaps. That always does well in war
times.

Anaconda, for instance. Average yearly earnings during the pre-war
years
1910-1914 of $10,000,000. During the war years 1914-1918 profits
leaped to
$34,000,000 per year.

Or Utah Copper. Average of $5,000,000 per year during the 1910-1914
period.
Jumped to an average of $21,000,000 yearly profits for the war period.

Let's group these five, with three smaller companies. The total yearly
average profits of the pre-war period 1910-1914 were $137,480,000.
Then
along came the war. The average yearly profits for this group
skyrocketed to
$408,300,000.

A little increase in profits of approximately 200 per cent.

Does war pay? It paid them. But they aren't the only ones. There are
still
others. Let's take leather.

For the three-year period before the war the total profits of Central
Leather Company were $3,500,000. That was approximately $1,167,000 a
year.
Well, in 1916 Central Leather returned a profit of $15,000,000, a
small
increase of 1,100 per cent. That's all. The General Chemical Company
averaged a profit for the three years before the war of a little over
$800,000 a year. Came the war, and the profits jumped to $12,000,000.
a leap
of 1,400 per cent.

International Nickel Company – and you can't have a war without
nickel –
showed an increase in profits from a mere average of $4,000,000 a
year to
$73,000,000 yearly. Not bad? An increase of more than 1,700 per cent.

American Sugar Refining Company averaged $2,000,000 a year for the
three
years before the war. In 1916 a profit of $6,000,000 was recorded.

Listen to Senate Document No. 259. The Sixty-Fifth Congress,
reporting on
corporate earnings and government revenues. Considering the profits
of 122
meat packers, 153 cotton manufacturers, 299 garment makers, 49 steel
plants,
and 340 coal producers during the war. Profits under 25 per cent were
exceptional. For instance the coal companies made between 100 per
cent and
7,856 per cent on their capital stock during the war. The Chicago
packers
doubled and tripled their earnings.

And let us not forget the bankers who financed the great war. If
anyone had
the cream of the profits it was the bankers. Being partnerships
rather than
incorporated organizations, they do not have to report to
stockholders. And
their profits were as secret as they were immense. How the bankers
made
their millions and their billions I do not know, because those little
secrets never become public – even before a Senate investigatory body.

But here's how some of the other patriotic industrialists and
speculators
chiseled their way into war profits.

Take the shoe people. They like war. It brings business with abnormal
profits. They made huge profits on sales abroad to our allies.
Perhaps, like
the munitions manufacturers and armament makers, they also sold to the
enemy. For a dollar is a dollar whether it comes from Germany or from
France. But they did well by Uncle Sam too. For instance, they sold
Uncle
Sam 35,000,000 pairs of hobnailed service shoes. There were 4,000,000
soldiers. Eight pairs, and more, to a soldier. My regiment during the
war
had only one pair to a soldier. Some of these shoes probably are
still in
existence. They were good shoes. But when the war was over Uncle Sam
has a
matter of 25,000,000 pairs left over. Bought – and paid for. Profits
recorded and pocketed.

There was still lots of leather left. So the leather people sold your
Uncle
Sam hundreds of thousands of McClellan saddles for the cavalry. But
there
wasn't any American cavalry overseas! Somebody had to get rid of this
leather, however. Somebody had to make a profit in it – so we had a
lot of
McClellan saddles. And we probably have those yet.

Also somebody had a lot of mosquito netting. They sold your Uncle Sam
20,000,000 mosquito nets for the use of the soldiers overseas. I
suppose the
boys were expected to put it over them as they tried to sleep in muddy
trenches – one hand scratching cooties on their backs and the other
making
passes at scurrying rats. Well, not one of these mosquito nets ever
got to
France!

Anyhow, these thoughtful manufacturers wanted to make sure that no
soldier
would be without his mosquito net, so 40,000,000 additional yards of
mosquito netting were sold to Uncle Sam.

There were pretty good profits in mosquito netting in those days,
even if
there were no mosquitoes in France. I suppose, if the war had lasted
just a
little longer, the enterprising mosquito netting manufacturers would
have
sold your Uncle Sam a couple of consignments of mosquitoes to plant in
France so that more mosquito netting would be in order.

Airplane and engine manufacturers felt they, too, should get their
just
profits out of this war. Why not? Everybody else was getting theirs.
So
$1,000,000,000 – count them if you live long enough – was spent by
Uncle Sam
in building airplane engines that never left the ground! Not one
plane, or
motor, out of the billion dollars worth ordered, ever got into a
battle in
France. Just the same the manufacturers made their little profit of
30, 100,
or perhaps 300 per cent.

Undershirts for soldiers cost 14¢ [cents] to make and uncle Sam paid
30¢ to
40¢ each for them – a nice little profit for the undershirt
manufacturer.
And the stocking manufacturer and the uniform manufacturers and the
cap
manufacturers and the steel helmet manufacturers – all got theirs.

Why, when the war was over some 4,000,000 sets of equipment –
knapsacks and
the things that go to fill them – crammed warehouses on this side.
Now they
are being scrapped because the regulations have changed the contents.
But
the manufacturers collected their wartime profits on them – and they
will do
it all over again the next time.

There were lots of brilliant ideas for profit making during the war.

One very versatile patriot sold Uncle Sam twelve dozen 48-inch
wrenches. Oh,
they were very nice wrenches. The only trouble was that there was
only one
nut ever made that was large enough for these wrenches. That is the
one that
holds the turbines at Niagara Falls. Well, after Uncle Sam had bought
them
and the manufacturer had pocketed the profit, the wrenches were put on
freight cars and shunted all around the United States in an effort to
find a
use for them. When the Armistice was signed it was indeed a sad blow
to the
wrench manufacturer. He was just about to make some nuts to fit the
wrenches. Then he planned to sell these, too, to your Uncle Sam.

Still another had the brilliant idea that colonels shouldn't ride in
automobiles, nor should they even ride on horseback. One has probably
seen a
picture of Andy Jackson riding in a buckboard. Well, some 6,000
buckboards
were sold to Uncle Sam for the use of colonels! Not one of them was
used.
But the buckboard manufacturer got his war profit.

The shipbuilders felt they should come in on some of it, too. They
built a
lot of ships that made a lot of profit. More than $3,000,000,000
worth. Some
of the ships were all right. But $635,000,000 worth of them were made
of
wood and wouldn't float! The seams opened up – and they sank. We paid
for
them, though. And somebody pocketed the profits.

It has been estimated by statisticians and economists and researchers
that
the war cost your Uncle Sam $52,000,000,000. Of this sum,
$39,000,000,000
was expended in the actual war itself. This expenditure yielded
$16,000,000,000 in profits. That is how the 21,000 billionaires and
millionaires got that way. This $16,000,000,000 profits is not to be
sneezed
at. It is quite a tidy sum. And it went to a very few.

The Senate (Nye) committee probe of the munitions industry and its
wartime
profits, despite its sensational disclosures, hardly has scratched the
surface.

Even so, it has had some effect. The State Department has been
studying "for
some time" methods of keeping out of war. The War Department suddenly
decides it has a wonderful plan to spring. The Administration names a
committee – with the War and Navy Departments ably represented under
the
chairmanship of a Wall Street speculator – to limit profits in war
time. To
what extent isn't suggested. Hmmm. Possibly the profits of 300 and
600 and
1,600 per cent of those who turned blood into gold in the World War
would be
limited to some smaller figure.

Apparently, however, the plan does not call for any limitation of
losses –
that is, the losses of those who fight the war. As far as I have been
able
to ascertain there is nothing in the scheme to limit a soldier to the
loss
of but one eye, or one arm, or to limit his wounds to one or two or
three.
Or to limit the loss of life.

There is nothing in this scheme, apparently, that says not more than
12 per
cent of a regiment shall be wounded in battle, or that not more than
7 per
cent in a division shall be killed.

Of course, the committee cannot be bothered with such trifling
matters.

CHAPTER THREE

WHO PAYS THE BILLS?

Who provides the profits – these nice little profits of 20, 100, 300,
1,500
and 1,800 per cent? We all pay them – in taxation. We paid the
bankers their
profits when we bought Liberty Bonds at $100.00 and sold them back at
$84 or
$86 to the bankers. These bankers collected $100 plus. It was a simple
manipulation. The bankers control the security marts. It was easy for
them
to depress the price of these bonds. Then all of us – the people – got
frightened and sold the bonds at $84 or $86. The bankers bought them.
Then
these same bankers stimulated a boom and government bonds went to
par – and
above. Then the bankers collected their profits.

But the soldier pays the biggest part of the bill.

If you don't believe this, visit the American cemeteries on the
battlefields
abroad. Or visit any of the veteran's hospitals in the United States.
On a
tour of the country, in the midst of which I am at the time of this
writing,
I have visited eighteen government hospitals for veterans. In them
are a
total of about 50,000 destroyed men – men who were the pick of the
nation
eighteen years ago. The very able chief surgeon at the government
hospital;
at Milwaukee, where there are 3,800 of the living dead, told me that
mortality among veterans is three times as great as among those who
stayed
at home.

Boys with a normal viewpoint were taken out of the fields and offices
and
factories and classrooms and put into the ranks. There they were
remolded;
they were made over; they were made to "about face"; to regard murder
as the
order of the day. They were put shoulder to shoulder and, through mass
psychology, they were entirely changed. We used them for a couple of
years
and trained them to think nothing at all of killing or of being
killed.

Then, suddenly, we discharged them and told them to make
another "about
face" ! This time they had to do their own readjustment, sans
[without] mass
psychology, sans officers' aid and advice and sans nation-wide
propaganda.
We didn't need them any more. So we scattered them about without any
"three-minute" or "Liberty Loan" speeches or parades. Many, too many,
of
these fine young boys are eventually destroyed, mentally, because
they could
not make that final "about face" alone.

In the government hospital in Marion, Indiana, 1,800 of these boys
are in
pens! Five hundred of them in a barracks with steel bars and wires all
around outside the buildings and on the porches. These already have
been
mentally destroyed. These boys don't even look like human beings. Oh,
the
looks on their faces! Physically, they are in good shape; mentally,
they are
gone.

There are thousands and thousands of these cases, and more and more
are
coming in all the time. The tremendous excitement of the war, the
sudden
cutting off of that excitement – the young boys couldn't stand it.

That's a part of the bill. So much for the dead – they have paid
their part
of the war profits. So much for the mentally and physically wounded –
they
are paying now their share of the war profits. But the others paid,
too –
they paid with heartbreaks when they tore themselves away from their
firesides and their families to don the uniform of Uncle Sam – on
which a
profit had been made. They paid another part in the training camps
where
they were regimented and drilled while others took their jobs and
their
places in the lives of their communities. The paid for it in the
trenches
where they shot and were shot; where they were hungry for days at a
time;
where they slept in the mud and the cold and in the rain – with the
moans
and shrieks of the dying for a horrible lullaby.

But don't forget – the soldier paid part of the dollars and cents
bill too.

Up to and including the Spanish-American War, we had a prize system,
and
soldiers and sailors fought for money. During the Civil War they were
paid
bonuses, in many instances, before they went into service. The
government,
or states, paid as high as $1,200 for an enlistment. In the Spanish-
American
War they gave prize money. When we captured any vessels, the soldiers
all
got their share – at least, they were supposed to. Then it was found
that we
could reduce the cost of wars by taking all the prize money and
keeping it,
but conscripting [drafting] the soldier anyway. Then soldiers couldn't
bargain for their labor, Everyone else could bargain, but the soldier
couldn't.

Napoleon once said,

"All men are enamored of decorations...they positively hunger for
them."

So by developing the Napoleonic system – the medal business – the
government
learned it could get soldiers for less money, because the boys liked
to be
decorated. Until the Civil War there were no medals. Then the
Congressional
Medal of Honor was handed out. It made enlistments easier. After the
Civil
War no new medals were issued until the Spanish-American War.

In the World War, we used propaganda to make the boys accept
conscription.
They were made to feel ashamed if they didn't join the army.

So vicious was this war propaganda that even God was brought into it.
With
few exceptions our clergymen joined in the clamor to kill, kill,
kill. To
kill the Germans. God is on our side...it is His will that the
Germans be
killed.

And in Germany, the good pastors called upon the Germans to kill the
allies...to please the same God. That was a part of the general
propaganda,
built up to make people war conscious and murder conscious.

Beautiful ideals were painted for our boys who were sent out to die.
This
was the "war to end all wars." This was the "war to make the world
safe for
democracy." No one mentioned to them, as they marched away, that
their going
and their dying would mean huge war profits. No one told these
American
soldiers that they might be shot down by bullets made by their own
brothers
here. No one told them that the ships on which they were going to
cross
might be torpedoed by submarines built with United States patents.
They were
just told it was to be a "glorious adventure."

Thus, having stuffed patriotism down their throats, it was decided to
make
them help pay for the war, too. So, we gave them the large salary of
$30 a
month.

All they had to do for this munificent sum was to leave their dear
ones
behind, give up their jobs, lie in swampy trenches, eat canned willy
(when
they could get it) and kill and kill and kill...and be killed.

But wait!

Half of that wage (just a little more than a riveter in a shipyard or
a
laborer in a munitions factory safe at home made in a day) was
promptly
taken from him to support his dependents, so that they would not
become a
charge upon his community. Then we made him pay what amounted to
accident
insurance – something the employer pays for in an enlightened state –
and
that cost him $6 a month. He had less than $9 a month left.

Then, the most crowning insolence of all – he was virtually
blackjacked into
paying for his own ammunition, clothing, and food by being made to buy
Liberty Bonds. Most soldiers got no money at all on pay days.

We made them buy Liberty Bonds at $100 and then we bought them back –
when
they came back from the war and couldn't find work – at $84 and $86.
And the
soldiers bought about $2,000,000,000 worth of these bonds!

Yes, the soldier pays the greater part of the bill. His family pays
too.
They pay it in the same heart-break that he does. As he suffers, they
suffer. At nights, as he lay in the trenches and watched shrapnel
burst
about him, they lay home in their beds and tossed sleeplessly – his
father,
his mother, his wife, his sisters, his brothers, his sons, and his
daughters.

When he returned home minus an eye, or minus a leg or with his mind
broken,
they suffered too – as much as and even sometimes more than he. Yes,
and
they, too, contributed their dollars to the profits of the munitions
makers
and bankers and shipbuilders and the manufacturers and the
speculators made.
They, too, bought Liberty Bonds and contributed to the profit of the
bankers
after the Armistice in the hocus-pocus of manipulated Liberty Bond
prices.

And even now the families of the wounded men and of the mentally
broken and
those who never were able to readjust themselves are still suffering
and
still paying.

CHAPTER FOUR

HOW TO SMASH THIS RACKET!

WELL, it's a racket, all right.

A few profit – and the many pay. But there is a way to stop it. You
can't
end it by disarmament conferences. You can't eliminate it by peace
parleys
at Geneva. Well-meaning but impractical groups can't wipe it out by
resolutions. It can be smashed effectively only by taking the profit
out of
war.

The only way to smash this racket is to conscript capital and
industry and
labor before the nations manhood can be conscripted. One month before
the
Government can conscript the young men of the nation – it must
conscript
capital and industry and labor. Let the officers and the directors
and the
high-powered executives of our armament factories and our munitions
makers
and our shipbuilders and our airplane builders and the manufacturers
of all
the other things that provide profit in war time as well as the
bankers and
the speculators, be conscripted – to get $30 a month, the same wage
as the
lads in the trenches get.

Let the workers in these plants get the same wages – all the workers,
all
presidents, all executives, all directors, all managers, all bankers –

yes, and all generals and all admirals and all officers and all
politicians
and all government office holders – everyone in the nation be
restricted to
a total monthly income not to exceed that paid to the soldier in the
trenches!

Let all these kings and tycoons and masters of business and all those
workers in industry and all our senators and governors and majors pay
half
of their monthly $30 wage to their families and pay war risk
insurance and
buy Liberty Bonds.

Why shouldn't they?

They aren't running any risk of being killed or of having their bodies
mangled or their minds shattered. They aren't sleeping in muddy
trenches.
They aren't hungry. The soldiers are!

Give capital and industry and labor thirty days to think it over and
you
will find, by that time, there will be no war. That will smash the war
racket – that and nothing else.

Maybe I am a little too optimistic. Capital still has some say. So
capital
won't permit the taking of the profit out of war until the people –
those
who do the suffering and still pay the price – make up their minds
that
those they elect to office shall do their bidding, and not that of the
profiteers.

Another step necessary in this fight to smash the war racket is the
limited
plebiscite to determine whether a war should be declared. A
plebiscite not
of all the voters but merely of those who would be called upon to do
the
fighting and dying. There wouldn't be very much sense in having a
76-year-old president of a munitions factory or the flat-footed head
of an
international banking firm or the cross-eyed manager of a uniform
manufacturing plant – all of whom see visions of tremendous profits
in the
event of war – voting on whether the nation should go to war or not.
They
never would be called upon to shoulder arms – to sleep in a trench
and to be
shot. Only those who would be called upon to risk their lives for
their
country should have the privilege of voting to determine whether the
nation
should go to war.

There is ample precedent for restricting the voting to those
affected. Many
of our states have restrictions on those permitted to vote. In most,
it is
necessary to be able to read and write before you may vote. In some,
you
must own property. It would be a simple matter each year for the men
coming
of military age to register in their communities as they did in the
draft
during the World War and be examined physically. Those who could pass
and
who would therefore be called upon to bear arms in the event of war
would be
eligible to vote in a limited plebiscite. They should be the ones to
have
the power to decide – and not a Congress few of whose members are
within the
age limit and fewer still of whom are in physical condition to bear
arms.
Only those who must suffer should have the right to vote.

A third step in this business of smashing the war racket is to make
certain
that our military forces are truly forces for defense only.

At each session of Congress the question of further naval
appropriations
comes up. The swivel-chair admirals of Washington (and there are
always a
lot of them) are very adroit lobbyists. And they are smart. They
don't shout
that "We need a lot of battleships to war on this nation or that
nation." Oh
no. First of all, they let it be known that America is menaced by a
great
naval power. Almost any day, these admirals will tell you, the great
fleet
of this supposed enemy will strike suddenly and annihilate 125,000,000
people. Just like that. Then they begin to cry for a larger navy. For
what?
To fight the enemy? Oh my, no. Oh, no. For defense purposes only.

Then, incidentally, they announce maneuvers in the Pacific. For
defense. Uh,
huh.

The Pacific is a great big ocean. We have a tremendous coastline on
the
Pacific. Will the maneuvers be off the coast, two or three hundred
miles?
Oh, no. The maneuvers will be two thousand, yes, perhaps even thirty-
five
hundred miles, off the coast.

The Japanese, a proud people, of course will be pleased beyond
expression to
see the united States fleet so close to Nippon's shores. Even as
pleased as
would be the residents of California were they to dimly discern
through the
morning mist, the Japanese fleet playing at war games off Los Angeles.

The ships of our navy, it can be seen, should be specifically
limited, by
law, to within 200 miles of our coastline. Had that been the law in
1898 the
Maine would never have gone to Havana Harbor. She never would have
been
blown up. There would have been no war with Spain with its attendant
loss of
life. Two hundred miles is ample, in the opinion of experts, for
defense
purposes. Our nation cannot start an offensive war if its ships can't
go
further than 200 miles from the coastline. Planes might be permitted
to go
as far as 500 miles from the coast for purposes of reconnaissance.
And the
army should never leave the territorial limits of our nation.

To summarize: Three steps must be taken to smash the war racket.

We must take the profit out of war.

We must permit the youth of the land who would bear arms to decide
whether
or not there should be war.

We must limit our military forces to home defense purposes.

CHAPTER FIVE

TO HELL WITH WAR!

I am not a fool as to believe that war is a thing of the past. I know
the
people do not want war, but there is no use in saying we cannot be
pushed
into another war.

Looking back, Woodrow Wilson was re-elected president in 1916 on a
platform
that he had "kept us out of war" and on the implied promise that he
would
"keep us out of war." Yet, five months later he asked Congress to
declare
war on Germany.

In that five-month interval the people had not been asked whether
they had
changed their minds. The 4,000,000 young men who put on uniforms and
marched
or sailed away were not asked whether they wanted to go forth to
suffer and
die.

Then what caused our government to change its mind so suddenly?

Money.

An allied commission, it may be recalled, came over shortly before
the war
declaration and called on the President. The President summoned a
group of
advisers. The head of the commission spoke. Stripped of its diplomatic
language, this is what he told the President and his group:

"There is no use kidding ourselves any longer. The cause of the
allies is
lost. We now owe you (American bankers, American munitions makers,
American
manufacturers, American speculators, American exporters) five or six
billion
dollars.

If we lose (and without the help of the United States we must lose)
we,
England, France and Italy, cannot pay back this money...and Germany
won't.

So..."

Had secrecy been outlawed as far as war negotiations were concerned,
and had
the press been invited to be present at that conference, or had radio
been
available to broadcast the proceedings, America never would have
entered the
World War. But this conference, like all war discussions, was
shrouded in
utmost secrecy. When our boys were sent off to war they were told it
was a
"war to make the world safe for democracy" and a "war to end all
wars."

Well, eighteen years after, the world has less of democracy than it
had
then. Besides, what business is it of ours whether Russia or Germany
or
England or France or Italy or Austria live under democracies or
monarchies?
Whether they are Fascists or Communists? Our problem is to preserve
our own
democracy.

And very little, if anything, has been accomplished to assure us that
the
World War was really the war to end all wars.

Yes, we have had disarmament conferences and limitations of arms
conferences. They don't mean a thing. One has just failed; the
results of
another have been nullified. We send our professional soldiers and our
sailors and our politicians and our diplomats to these conferences.
And what
happens?

The professional soldiers and sailors don't want to disarm. No
admiral wants
to be without a ship. No general wants to be without a command. Both
mean
men without jobs. They are not for disarmament. They cannot be for
limitations of arms. And at all these conferences, lurking in the
background
but all-powerful, just the same, are the sinister agents of those who
profit
by war. They see to it that these conferences do not disarm or
seriously
limit armaments.

The chief aim of any power at any of these conferences has not been to
achieve disarmament to prevent war but rather to get more armament for
itself and less for any potential foe.

There is only one way to disarm with any semblance of practicability.
That
is for all nations to get together and scrap every ship, every gun,
every
rifle, every tank, every war plane. Even this, if it were possible,
would
not be enough.

The next war, according to experts, will be fought not with
battleships, not
by artillery, not with rifles and not with machine guns. It will be
fought
with deadly chemicals and gases.

Secretly each nation is studying and perfecting newer and ghastlier
means of
annihilating its foes wholesale. Yes, ships will continue to be
built, for
the shipbuilders must make their profits. And guns still will be
manufactured and powder and rifles will be made, for the munitions
makers
must make their huge profits. And the soldiers, of course, must wear
uniforms, for the manufacturer must make their war profits too.

But victory or defeat will be determined by the skill and ingenuity
of our
scientists.

If we put them to work making poison gas and more and more fiendish
mechanical and explosive instruments of destruction, they will have
no time
for the constructive job of building greater prosperity for all
peoples. By
putting them to this useful job, we can all make more money out of
peace
than we can out of war – even the munitions makers.

So...I say,

TO HELL WITH WAR!

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