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charlie: 'Yes, each of us does have a voice in the matter by how we vote.'

By which time it's too late - since most elections are won on rhetoric, not substantive issues. Nobody voted for invading Iraq/ Afghanistan, or even TARP. Pols get the votes, then go and do exactly what their respective campaign contributors pay them to do. Sure, we can boot them out later - but we can't undo the damage.

'But when cuts to US-based, military bases are proposed, or cuts to huge hardware projects are proposed, who protests the loudest?'
The respective industry lobbies - by speaking softly and wielding the biggest stick of all - $$$ signs.

'The faster the US spends itself into bankruptcy, the sooner the rest of the world will have a chance to achieve genuine peace.'

Very well put, rhetorically speaking, but I can't think of a more painful Rx for the American people.
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