Oct 11, 2011 Rally at 9:00 a.m. today: When lawmakers admit they are in the palm of the hands of huge corporations
We already know that too many government officials and legislators are in the palm of the hands of huge corporations. It just sounds all the more pathetic when they admit as much, as with this month’s withdrawal of a mildly-worded Montgomery County, Maryland, County Council resolution to reduce war spending and to redirect the funds to social programs.
The measure had a five-vote majority, but then recently vanished from the county council’s agenda and website after county corporate resident Lockheed-Martin weighed in, along with Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, County Executive Isaiah Leggett, and U.S. House member Chris Van Hollen, among others.
The theme of withdrawing the measure was the risk of Lockheed’s relocating to Virginia and losing jobs for Marylanders on a non-binding measure. However, the damage to democracy seems all the greater.
Kudos to entrepreneur Andy Shallal — who has found a way to profit off his expanding bar and restaurant chain in these recessionary times while hosting countless politically "progressive" events — for responding to this refusal to even bring this measure to a vote, by withdrawing his efforts to expand his Busboys and Poets chain to Montgomery County, which is the county where I live and work.
I say all this without being a fan of huge social programs nor of plenty of "progressive" groups, but by being opposed to bowing to corporate pressure by going as far as removing this war-funding measure from even seeing the light of day for a vote. It is not too late for the Montgomery County Council to reverse course, but I am not holding my breath.
Wars kill, maim, and drain scarce governmental dollars. Tax dollars are funding plenty of the jobs provided by Lockheed-Martin. When lawmakers kowtow to government defense contractors, that just further entrenches the military-government-industrial complex.
Today at 9:00 a.m. will be a rally against the withdrawal of this war funding measure.