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Sacrificing Diplomacy for War–The Trump BudgetWhile increasing the U.S. military budget by $54 billion, President Trump’s new budget proposes cuts to the international development budget by 37%. These major cuts to the Secretary of State will severely hamper U.S. foreign relation efforts. Trump’s budget proposal demonstrates where his priorities lie, and it is not with diplomacy or international development. Americans should also expect to see cuts to the Public Broadcasting Service, the National Endowment of the Arts and Humanities and the Environmental Protection Agency. Trump’s budget proposal is a boon for the defense industry as Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Boeing, General Dynamics, and Huntington Ingalls have each seen stock increases since the President’s budget proposal (Investor’s Business Daily) was released. The defense contractors further receive benefits in the form of subsidies and tax credits. The Fiscal Times provides a list of defense contractors and the amount in grants and tax credits each of the contractors receive. General Electric alone receives more than $800 million in tax credits. This new administration has made it clear that it prioritizes its war-based capacity over a peace-based economy. Even military leaders are questioning the President’s proposed cuts to the State Department budget. In a joint letter, 100 generals defended the importance of supporting diplomacy. They quoted Defense Secretary James Mattis who said, “If you don’t fully fund the State Department, then I need to buy more ammunition” (CBSNews). In quoting Mattis, these generals are saying that the country is essentially at risk with these cuts to diplomacy. The President’s proposed budget is unacceptable. It puts our country at risk and endangers the lives of military personnel at home and abroad. It is our personal responsibility to contact our congressional representatives every day and let them know that we do not support these cuts to valuable resources like the State Department, PBS, NEA and EPA. Contact your representative today! References Investor’s Business Daily: http://www.investors.com/news/a-fiscal-hawk-is-in-charge-of-the-budget-but-trump-will-raise-defense-spending/ The Fiscal Times: http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/2015/03/20/How-Big-Contractors-Mooch-Federal-Subsidies CBSNews: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/more-than-100-generals-sign-letter-warning-against-budget-cuts/ United States House of Representatives: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/
Friday, March 24, 2017: Charlie King In ConcertTegeler Hall, St Louis University Campus, 3550 Lindell Blvd (Between Grand and Compton) Annual Concert And Silent Auction Doors Open at 6:30 p.m. Concert Begins at 7:30 p.m. Opening: Astha A Cappella--St. Louis University Indian Fusion A Cappella This year’s Charlie King concert is just the start to celebrating PEP’s 40th anniversary! PEP was founded in 1977, and the event is the beginning to honoring 40 years of great work and 40 more years of tackling the military-industrial complex! Charlie King is a musical storyteller, political satirist, and a dear friend of the Peace Economy Project. He has been at the heart of American folk music for half a century. He sings and writes passionately about the extraordinary lives of ordinary people. His songs have been sung by Pete Seeger, Holly Near, Ronnie Gilbert, John McCutcheon, Arlo Guthrie, Peggy Seeger, Chad Mitchell and Judy Small, to name a few. “With encouraging regularity, Charlie King emerges from his self-reflection to remind us of the happy resilience of the human spirit. His message songs vary between the funny and the frightening, but he pulls them off with unvarying taste, musical skill, and charm.”
Job Opening: PEP Is Recruiting A New Executive DirectorThe Peace Economy Project, founded in 1977, researches military spending, educates about the hazards of an unchecked military-industrial-congressional complex, and advocates for conversion from a military to a more stable peace-based economy. Qualified individuals are encouraged to apply to be the next Director of this unique non-profit organization. The Director manages all day-to-day operations of the Peace Economy Project. This includes writing op-eds and letters to the editor to be published in local newspapers, speaking at rallies and events, and coordinating regular fundraising campaigns. The director is also responsible for maintaining relationships with the board of the organization, with fellow leaders in the peace and social justice community, and with members of the organization. The ideal candidate is a self-starter who possesses strong analytical skills and the ability to make complex military and federal issues relevant at the local level. While being able to work independently is vital for success in this position, experience as a community organizer and/or working within coalitions and the ability to build strong relationships are essential as well. Position available is 40 hours per week Duties include, but are not limited to: • Publish monthly EZine and annual print newsletter • Write emails, blog posts, web pages and newsletter articles • Seek and coordinate public speaking opportunities • Guide fundraising events and campaigns • Attend coalition meetings on PEP's behalf • Recruit, hire and supervise interns • Maintain web presence including social networking sites and www.PeaceEconomyProject.org • Work with other peace and justice organizations nationally • Ongoing outreach to local membership • Maintain membership data base • Bookkeeping and filing quarterly taxes • Event and meeting planning, especially board meetings • Write and research grants and grant opportunities • Participate and coordinate lobbying efforts Qualifications: • Two+ years’ experience in an executive role and/or with a non profit • Commitment to the goals and mission of the Peace Economy Project • Strong writing and research skills • Public speaking experience • Experience with Mailchimp, Wordpress and/or Salesforce a plus • Knowledge of the arms trade, nuclear weapons, and defense budget costs preferred Interested? Please submit your CV and a sample of your writing to email@example.com
End Pentagon Waste: Donate to the Peace Economy Project TodayThank you for your continued support in 2016. Because of you, the Peace Economy Project remained a strong voice for peace and justice. Over the last 40 years, PEP has emphasized the importance of converting swords into plowshares and we hope to continue to do so in 2017 and onward. To assist us in this work, we are asking you for your help in reaching our end of year goal. This holiday season, we hope to raise $5,000 from generous supporters such as you. (more…)
An Escalating Arms Race: Is A New Cold War Inevitable?
Over the last year or so, it has seemed increasingly so. Consider the evidence:
- NATO has agreed to have combat brigades rotate through eastern European countries that formerly were under the domain of the Soviet Union. This follows the announcement of a Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF) that would enable the U.S. and its NATO allies to respond rapidly to a security crisis with Russia. The administration has asked for $3.4 billion in the FY-2017 budget (versus the current $789 million) to be used for “prepositioning war fighting gear,” training and exercises.
- Russia and the U.S. each charge the other with violating the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. Signed by President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Leader Michael Gorbachev, the treaty stated that neither country would “possess, produce or flight test ground launched cruise missiles with a range of 3000 – 3400 miles."
U.S. Military Aid and Human Rights Violations Around the WorldLast year, the Peace Economy Project presented at Amnesty International's Midwest Regional Conference in Detroit, Mich. The session,"Blank Check: U.S. Military Aid and Human Rights Violations Around the World," featured facts and figures about human rights, the federal budget, foreign aid and the countries impacted by the U.S.' budgeting priorities. More than 30 people attended the fun-filled trivia session. (more…)
Drone Free STL Shifts Focus Toward City-Wide Surveillance and PrivacyBy Allison Reilly PEP Executive Director This article was originally published in the 2016 edition of the Peace Economy News. Drone Free STL was a coalition the Peace Economy Project formed in 2014 to stop police drones in the St. Louis region. St. Louis Chief of Police Sam Dotson is still awaiting approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to purchase a drone for the city. Early on, Drone Free broadened its focus toward other surveillance issues, such as body cameras and the Real Time Intelligence Center (RTIC), as the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department looks for ways to put citizens under surveillance besides unmanned drones. (more…)
Sacrificing Diplomacy for War–The Trump Budget
March 6, 2017
ANOTHER FAMILY MOURNS
February 26, 2017