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Star Wars Again?

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Selections from The Jefferson Report

Since November 1993 Robert Jefferson has been providing radio stations and talk-shows with a unique and addictive 90-second progressive commentary. Treating today's news with humorous wit and thought-provoking insight, The Jefferson Report has been described by listeners as "stimulating and refreshing", "incredibly on target", and "an excellent source of commentary and information." rjefferson.gif - 17.81 K Robert Jefferson

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The Sky Ain't Falling
May 29, 1998

nuke.jpg - 13.11 KThe news about Pakistan's nuclear tests had barely gotten out yesterday morning when the advocates for a national missile defense system were out hawking their crazy idea yet again. Some military expert was on one network morning news program insisting that Pakistan's underground tests plus reports that the country is equipping its primitive missiles with nuclear warheads meant that Americans should be afraid of an attack.

Get real. The only way a U.S. citizen has any chance of being hit by a nuclear weapon from India or Pakistan is if they are walking down the streets of New Delhi or Islamabad. Why do these Ronald Reagan Star Wars fanatics continuously try to convince the American public that any third world country, that can't even provide clean water to its people, has the ability to build a technologically sophisticated intercontinental ballistic missile to threaten the U.S.?

These rabid conservatives are the same folk who also say that we shouldn't have let China launch our satellites. Why? Because developing an effective nuclear missile program capable of accurately hitting U.S. cities requires great expertise and experience that apparently only we have.

So America, climb out of your bomb shelters and tell the military industrial complex you don't need or want their national missile defense system.

Early Halloween
July 17, 1998

You have to hand it to the defense contractors. They know how to keep scaring the American people to get more and more taxpayer dollars.

This week, an independent commission made up of defense contractor friends released a controversial report aiming to push the U.S. into spending more money and faster trying to develop a national defense shield against intercontinental ballistic missiles -- an old Ronald Reagan "Star Wars" idea. The third world countries of North Korea, Iran and Iraq are pointed out as the likely countries to quickly and secretively develop a missile system requiring so much technological sophistication plus years of testing to make it reliable that only five industrialized countries now possess it.

Now, everybody knows that the real national threat from rogue nations comes from nuclear weapons delivered by a pickup truck or the even easier biological and chemical terrorist attack. But there's no big bucks for defense contractors in these areas. reagan.jpg - 14.34 K Ronald Reagan: The father of SDI

That's why they and their minions in Congress have to keep us scared about bombs from above. We've already given defense contractors $50 billion over the years trying to develop a "Star Wars" system and we have zilch to show for it.

Newt Gingrich called this commission's conclusions "very sobering." But what he and defense contractors really want is a public, drunk with fear.

We're Insane, Too
August 11, 1998

sdi.jpg - 3.20 KDo you know how much money we have spent trying to develop a national missile defense system to protect our citizens from intercontinental ballistic missiles? $50 billion dollars. Next year we will spend another $3.6 billion for this "Star Wars" research. And many in Congress, mostly Republicans, want us to spend tens of billions more in the next few years to try to build this crazy idea which the defense contractors have not and will not ever perfect. And why? Because of the threat from rogue, terrorist nations say the proponents.

Well, last week we saw the real threat from terrorist nations or groups. We've seen it over and over again. It comes in a truck, not from space. Yet, we now hear that Congress has never allocated enough money to target harden all our embassies. Our border patrol operations right here at home are underfunded as are the courts to deal with those, including would be terrorists, who are caught trying to sneak into our country.

Yet, we've spent $50 billion and are spending billions more on a terrorist threat that doesn't exist. We may call terrorists insane, but so are we. How else can you characterize a people who allow their government to spend vast fortunes on a national defense which can't take out the prime weapon delivery system of its enemy -- a truck.

They Won't Give Up
September 1, 1998

missle.gif - 2.30 KWe now have the goofiest reason ever offered for why the U.S. should build a national missile defense system. The Republican holding this dubious honor is Representative Michael Pappas of New Jersey. Pappas delivered the GOP's weekly radio address on Saturday calling for a "Star Wars" national missile defense system citing the bombings of the U.S. embassies in Africa as examples of how vulnerable we are to our enemies.

What a defense contractor suck-up! I'm sure the big donations from would-be missile defense contractors are rolling in to Pappas' re-election campaign. Give us a break, Congressman. The embassies were the victims of truck or car bombs, not missile attacks.

Pappas went on to say that "the truth is we do not have a system fielded that could destroy an enemy's missile before it reached us." No, after wasting $50 billion trying to develop one, we don't have a such a system. And the odds are we can spend another $50 billion and still not have one.

But there is something we should be afraid of. The truth is we don't have a system fielded that can stop somebody like Congressman Pappas from fear mongering in an effort to convince us to waste more tax dollars so that he and his mostly GOP cronies can collect special interest campaign contributions. Now, that would be a system worth building.

© 1997-98 BEI