by Josh Neil

Money for People, Not for WarThe fight over the fiscal bluff continues to heat up. Members of PJALS, Veterans for Peace, the Progressive Democrats, the EWU chapter of MEChA, and leaders in the faith community came together to lift our collective voice in order to tell Senators Murray and Cantwell, “Money for People, Not for War!”

Our country has a choice to make: we can either work towards prosperity for our working families and the middle class (who make up the majority of our population); or we can continue to pour money down the drain, into the mouths of the millionaires and CEOs. I think the choice is crystal clear. Forty-seven percent of income taxes for 2013 will go towards Pentagon spending–spending that creates fewer jobs than spending on education, healthcare and other social services.

Smedley Butler, former Major General in the United States Marine Corps, was an outspoken opponent to war. Bart Haggin performed his famous “War is a Racket” speech at the our rally. General Butler described a racket: “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.” I think this country has turned into a racket. It has turned from a passionate group of people, fighting towards the “American Dream,” to a country of selfish, wasteful billionaires and CEOs, set on filling their own pockets until they burst.

We delivered signatures from 1,123 community members and 18 organizations from the Spokane area who are urging Senators Murray and Cantwell to lead the way in creating jobs for real people, to fight to ensure critical social service don’t lose funding, and to fight to reduce wasteful Pentagon spending. “Bring our billions home! Money for people, not for war!”