Just stumbled upon an article on the Guardian, a British newspaper, reporting on a call for boycott on the annual census in Great Brittain. I was intrigued and read further… it turns out, one of the biggest war profiters of Earth, Lockheed Martin with it’s headquarter in the USA was chosen to conduct part of the census, by that earning around 150.000.000 pounds.
Now, why would anyone bother about that? Two reasons at least:
1. By doing contracts with arms producers, the war machine is supported and furthered.
2. Privacy security concerns, since US companies were used in the past to gather informations on foreign countries and companies. And what better information source than a nation wide census, right? This was already discussed in 2008 actually, when the contract went under way – as BBC is reporting.
Regarding the first reason, be aware that the military-industrial complex is something, US-presidents are afraid of. Actually the term was coined by former US-president Eisenhower:
“we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex (…) the potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
(…) Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.” (source: Wikipedia)
Now, I was aware of the millions, spent by military supply companies for lobbying – the sheer amount of money put into them by defense ministries world-wide is frightening. But that civil governments would chose to spend even more money and by that giving even more power to these companies really sounds like a very bad idea.
The second argument is even more important, since the data asked for (and anyone refusing to answer is to pay 1000 pounds or end up in in prison) include people staying overnight!
“people will be asked to provide details of the number of bedrooms they have as well as the names, sex and birth dates of any overnight guests in their homes.” (source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/8324746.stm)
Hope, none of you has stayed at someones place in Britain lately, at least not at someones place, who is willing to fill in all these data…
I hope I do not have to stress, that concentrating money, knowledge, power of any kind within one central structure runs contrary to any democratic principle of checks and balances since unlike politicians, industries are not as much obliged to be transparent and cannot be voted of – we had that discussion last week in Italy, and I agree with the people from SCI Italy and the no-more-war team now more than ever (even though I argued for the opposit last week… never too old to learn ).
Of course, this is not the only danger of the military-industrial complex, but it is one that should be talked about – especially since there are many non-democratic countries where the military is the main political power, of course supplied mostly by democratic countries nowadays, the first three ‘supporters’ being USA, Russia and Germany (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_industry#World.27s_largest_arms_exporters).
no more war!