Friday, December 21, 2007

Freedom! Lakota Sioux Indians Declare Sovereign Nation Status

Mitaku Oyasin: We Are All Related
19 Dec 2007

Media Contacts:
Naomi Archer, Communications Liaison (828) 230-1404 lakotafree [at]

Freedom! Lakota Sioux Indians Declare Sovereign Nation Status

Threaten Land Liens, Contested Real Estate Over Five State Area in U.S. West

Lakota Satisfies Treaty Council Mandate of 33 Years, Drafted by 97 Indigenous Nations

Dakota Territory Reverts back to Lakota Control According to U.S., International Law

Washington D.C. – Lakota Sioux Indian representatives declared sovereign nation status today in Washington D.C. following Monday’s withdrawal from all previously signed treaties with the United States Government. The withdrawal, hand delivered to Daniel Turner, Deputy Director of Public Liaison at the State Department, immediately and irrevocably ends all agreements between the Lakota Sioux Nation of Indians and the United States Government outlined in the 1851 and 1868 Treaties at Fort Laramie Wyoming.

“This is an historic day for our Lakota people,” declared Russell Means, Itacan of Lakota. “United States colonial rule is at its end!”

“Today is a historic day and our forefathers speak through us. Our Forefathers made the treaties in good faith with the sacred Canupa and with the knowledge of the Great Spirit,” shared Garry Rowland from Wounded Knee. “They never honored the treaties, that’s the reason we are here today.”

The four member Lakota delegation traveled to Washington D.C. culminating years of internal discussion among treaty representatives of the various Lakota communities. Delegation members included well known activist and actor Russell Means, Women of All Red Nations (WARN) founder Phyllis Young, Oglala Lakota Strong Heart Society leader Duane Martin Sr., and Garry Rowland, Leader Chief Big Foot Riders. Means, Rowland, Martin Sr. were all members of the 1973 Wounded Knee takeover.

“In order to stop the continuous taking of our resources – people, land, water and children- we have no choice but to claim our own destiny,” said Phyllis Young, a former Indigenous representative to the United Nations and representative from Standing Rock.

Property ownership in the five state area of Lakota now takes center stage. Parts of North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming and Montana have been illegally homesteaded for years despite knowledge of Lakota as predecessor sovereign [historic owner]. Lakota representatives say if the United States does not enter into immediate diplomatic negotiations, liens will be filed on real estate transactions in the five state region, clouding title over literally thousands of square miles of land and property.

Young added, “The actions of Lakota are not intended to embarrass the United States but to simply save the lives of our people”.

Following Monday’s withdrawal at the State Department, the four Lakota Itacan representatives have been meeting with foreign embassy officials in order to hasten their official return to the Family of Nations.

Lakota’s efforts are gaining traction as Bolivia, home to Indigenous President Evo Morales, shared they are “very, very interested in the Lakota case” while Venezuela received the Lakota delegation with “respect and solidarity.”

“Our meetings have been fruitful and we hope to work with these countries for better relations,” explained Garry Rowland. “As a nation, we have equal status within the national community.”

Education, energy and justice now take top priority in emerging Lakota. “Cultural immersion education is crucial as a next step to protect our language, culture and sovereignty,” said Means. “Energy independence using solar, wind, geothermal, and sugar beets enables Lakota to protect our freedom and provide electricity and heating to our people.”

The Lakota reservations are among the most impoverished areas in North America, a shameful legacy of broken treaties and apartheid policies. Lakota has the highest death rate in the United States and Lakota men have the lowest life expectancy of any nation on earth, excluding AIDS, at approximately 44 years. Lakota infant mortality rate is five times the United States average and teen suicide rates 150% more than national average . 97% of Lakota people live below the poverty line and unemployment hovers near 85%.

“After 150 years of colonial enforcement, when you back people into a corner there is only one alternative,” emphasized Duane Martin Sr. “The only alternative is to bring freedom into its existence by taking it back to the love of freedom, to our lifeway.”

We are the freedom loving Lakota from the Sioux Indian reservations of Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Montana who have suffered from cultural and physical genocide in the colonial apartheid system we have been forced to live under. We are in Washington DC to withdraw from the constitutionally mandated treaties to become a free and independent country. We are alerting the Family of Nations we have now reassumed our freedom and independence with the backing of Natural, International, and United States law. For more information, please visit our new website at


  • Media Release 12/19/07: Sovereignty Declared, 33 Year Treaty Council Agreement Satisfied, Liens Threatened

  • Pre-Press Conference Media Advisory: Lakota Delegation Confront State Department with Withdrawal

  • Advance Media Advisory: Lakota Declaration to Make History in Withdrawal from United States Treaties

    Descendants of Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse break away from US

    WASHINGTON (AFP) — The Lakota Indians, who gave the world legendary warriors Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse, have withdrawn from treaties with the United States, leaders said Wednesday.

    "We are no longer citizens of the United States of America and all those who live in the five-state area that encompasses our country are free to join us," long-time Indian rights activist Russell Means told a handful of reporters and a delegation from the Bolivian embassy, gathered in a church in a run-down neighborhood of Washington for a news conference.

    A delegation of Lakota leaders delivered a message to the State Department on Monday, announcing they were unilaterally withdrawing from treaties they signed with the federal government of the United States, some of them more than 150 years old.

    They also visited the Bolivian, Chilean, South African and Venezuelan embassies, and will continue on their diplomatic mission and take it overseas in the coming weeks and months, they told the news conference.

    Lakota country includes parts of the states of Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming.

    The new country would issue its own passports and driving licences, and living there would be tax-free -- provided residents renounce their US citizenship, Means said.

    The treaties signed with the United States are merely "worthless words on worthless paper," the Lakota freedom activists say on their website.

    The treaties have been "repeatedly violated in order to steal our culture, our land and our ability to maintain our way of life," the reborn freedom movement says.

    Withdrawing from the treaties was entirely legal, Means said.

    "This is according to the laws of the United States, specifically article six of the constitution," which states that treaties are the supreme law of the land, he said.

    "It is also within the laws on treaties passed at the Vienna Convention and put into effect by the US and the rest of the international community in 1980. We are legally within our rights to be free and independent," said Means.

    The Lakota relaunched their journey to freedom in 1974, when they drafted a declaration of continuing independence -- an overt play on the title of the United States' Declaration of Independence from England.

    Thirty-three years have elapsed since then because "it takes critical mass to combat colonialism and we wanted to make sure that all our ducks were in a row," Means said.

    One duck moved into place in September, when the United Nations adopted a non-binding declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples -- despite opposition from the United States, which said it clashed with its own laws.

    "We have 33 treaties with the United States that they have not lived by. They continue to take our land, our water, our children," Phyllis Young, who helped organize the first international conference on indigenous rights in Geneva in 1977, told the news conference.

    The US "annexation" of native American land has resulted in once proud tribes such as the Lakota becoming mere "facsimiles of white people," said Means.

    Oppression at the hands of the US government has taken its toll on the Lakota, whose men have one of the shortest life expectancies -- less than 44 years -- in the world.

    Lakota teen suicides are 150 percent above the norm for the United States; infant mortality is five times higher than the US average; and unemployment is rife, according to the Lakota freedom movement's website.

    "Our people want to live, not just survive or crawl and be mascots," said Young.

    "We are not trying to embarrass the United States. We are here to continue the struggle for our children and grandchildren," she said, predicting that the battle would not be won in her lifetime.

    ~ Link ~

    NSA Gets Real Time Access to Your Email

    Kurt Nimmo
    19 Dec 2007

    " ... It was inevitable: the Advanced Research Projects Agency, later to become DARPA, right out of the Pentagon, created the internet. The RAND Corporation invented modern packet switching. DARPA and ARPANET recruited Vint Cerf of Stanford University to work on TCP/IP. Cerf is regarded as “the father of the Internet,” or maybe that should be the military-NSA snoop network. Now we learn NSA increasingly controls SSL, now called Transport Layer Security, the cryptographic protocol that provides secure communications on the internet for web browsing, e-mail, instant messaging, and other data transfers.

    In other words, increasingly, the NSA is reading your email and everything you type in your IM client — and in real time, that is to say there is no delay in the timeliness of the information, the underwear drawer snoopers have the ability to read your IMs as you type them.

    “Certain privacy/full session SSL email hosting services have been purchased/changed operational control by NSA and affiliates within the past few months, through private intermediary entities,” notes Cryptome.

    Hushmail: now fully owned by private entity NSA affiliate; has had informal relationship with NSA for a number of years that effectively provided NSA with real time access to Hushmail’s hosting servers. Israeli-based, ironically privately lauded by NSA and US military several years ago for its sound implementation of SendMail with SSL webmail GUI frontend. Now provides mail server info to NSA in real time. (SSH/SSL proxy): NSA contractors have “bought” full access rights to Guardster servers a few days ago. Separate but related: facilitated port sniffing of hosting servers at Everyones Internet, on NSA affiliates’ behalf, has been ongoing for a number of months now.

    Geekspeak aside, what this means is that the NSA is buying up key technology in an effort to snoop you even more closely. If this trend continues, we may as well call the internet the NSAnet.

    Moreover, according to Cryptome’s research, if you own “security” software produced by Zone Alarm, Symantec, and MacAfee, you are in essence throwing out a welcome mat for the NSA and its bevy of underwear drawer sniffing goons. “All facilitate Microsoft’s NSA-controlled remote admin access via IP/TCP ports 1024 through 1030,” and without a “security flag,” that it to say you will be none the wiser. ... "

    11th annual "Wacky Warning Label Contest"

    By Ron Vample
    The Associated Press
    12 Dec 2007

    " ... Here are some words to live by, from a warning label on a small
    tractor: "Danger: Avoid Death."

    That warning is the winner of the 11th annual "Wacky Warning Label Contest,"
    sponsored by Michigan Lawsuit Abuse Watch. The contest is part of an effort
    to show the effects of lawsuits on warning labels.

    Kevin Soave of Farmington Hills, a Detroit suburb, won the $500 grand prize
    for submitting the tractor's "Danger: Avoid Death" label.

    The $250 second place prize went to Carrianne, Jacob and Robby Turin of
    Greensburg, Pennsylvania, for a label they found on an iron-on T-shirt
    transfer that warns: "Do not iron while wearing shirt."

    Richard Goodnow of Lancaster, Massachusetts, earned the $100 third-place
    prize for a label on a baby stroller featuring a small storage pouch that
    warns: "Do not put child in bag." ... "

    Marshall's Law

    " ... Though he couldn't afford it, Marshall still made time for the fight
    against segregation. Representing the local NAACP, he negotiated with white
    store owners who sold to blacks but would not hire them. He joined John L.
    Lewis's effort to unionize black and white steelworkers. And he convinced a
    college graduate who wanted to go to law school to apply to the University
    of Maryland, which did not accept blacks into its law school program.
    Marshall had considered applying to Maryland himself after he graduated from
    college but decided it would be hopeless. Now he was taking the law school
    to court.

    Houston came to Baltimore and helped argue the case. During the proceedings,
    Marshall told the court: "What is at stake here is more than the rights of
    my client; it is the moral commitment stated in our country's creed." No one
    expected Marshall and Houston to win; they were simply trying to set up a
    case that could be appealed. "We were hoping to get to the Supreme Court any
    way we could," Marshall says. "But Judge Eugene O'Dunne said no. He said we
    won right there."

    "The colored people in Baltimore were on fire when Thurgood did that"
    recalls Juanita Jackson Mitchell, an NAACP activist in Baltimore. "They were
    euphoric with victory . . . We didn't know about the Constitution. He
    brought us the Constitution as a document like Moses brought his people the
    Ten Commandments." ... "

    The Army's Other Crisis

    Why the best and brightest young officers are leaving
    " ... These problems are of vital concern, and are reasonably well understood in newsrooms and on Capitol Hill. But the top uniformed and civilian leaders at the Pentagon who think hardest about the future of the military have a more fundamental fear: young officers—people like Matt Kapinos—are leaving the Army at nearly their highest rates in decades. This is not a short-term problem, nor is it one that can simply be fixed with money. A private-sector company or another government agency can address a shortage of middle managers by hiring more middle managers. In the Army's rigid hierarchy, all officers start out at the bottom, as second lieutenants. A decline in officer retention, in other words, threatens both the Army's current missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, and its long-term institutional future. And though many senior Pentagon leaders are quite aware of the problem, there's only so much they can do to reverse the decline while the United States maintains large numbers of troops in Iraq.
    In the last four years, the exodus of junior officers from the Army has accelerated. In 2003, around 8 percent of junior officers with between four and nine years of experience left for other careers. Last year, the attrition rate leapt to 13 percent. "A five percent change could potentially be a serious problem," said James Hosek, an expert in military retention at the RAND Corporation. Over the long term, this rate of attrition would halve the number of officers who reach their tenth year in uniform and intend to take senior leadership roles. ... "

    Synthetic DNA on the Brink of Yielding New Life Forms

    " ... Now researchers are poised to cross a dramatic barrier: the creation of
    life forms driven by completely artificial DNA.

    Scientists in Maryland have already built the world's first entirely
    handcrafted chromosome -- a large looping strand of DNA made from scratch
    in a laboratory, containing all the instructions a microbe needs to live
    and reproduce.

    In the coming year, they hope to transplant it into a cell, where it is
    expected to "boot itself up," like software downloaded from the Internet,
    and cajole the waiting cell to do its bidding. And while the first
    synthetic chromosome is a plagiarized version of a natural one, others
    that code for life forms that have never existed before are already under

    The cobbling together of life from synthetic DNA, scientists and
    philosophers agree, will be a watershed event, blurring the line between
    biological and artificial -- and forcing a rethinking of what it means for
    a thing to be alive. ... "

    People & Power - Death of the dollar 2 - 19 Dec 07 - Part 2

    People & Power - Death of the dollar 2 - 19 Dec 07 - Part 1

    Goldsmith: "Extreme secrecy...led to a lot of mistakes"

    In October, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a riveting hearing with
    Jack Goldsmith, the former head of the Justice Department Office of
    Legal Counsel.  The record of that hearing has just been published.

    As was widely reported at the time, Mr. Goldsmith challenged the
    legality of certain aspects of the President's warrantless surveillance
    program and raised questions about other policies and procedures in the
    "war on terrorism."

    "There's no doubt that the extreme secrecy [surrounding the Terrorist
    Surveillance Program] -- not getting feedback from experts, and not
    showing it to experts, and not getting a variety of views, even inside
    the executive branch -- led to a lot of mistakes," he said.

    The PDF version of the hearing record includes Mr. Goldsmith's answers
    to questions for the record from the Senate Committee members (pp.
    38-49).  In most cases, he deflected the Senators' pointed questions.
    But several of the exchanges are interesting nevertheless.

    Asked about the Administration's refusal to disclose to Congress the
    legal memoranda justifying its interrogation program, Mr. Goldsmith

    "I believe it is the President's prerogative not to disclose these
    opinions.  And I believe it is the Congress's prerogative to use
    political pressure to try to force the Executive to disclose the

    See "Preserving the Rule of Law in the Fight Against Terrorism,"
    hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, October 2, 2007:

    from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
    Volume 2007, Issue No. 125
    December 20, 2007

    Secrecy News Blog:

    Coal Ash Is More Radioactive than Nuclear Waste

    According to Scientific American:
    Strange but True -  December 13, 2007

    By burning away all the pesky carbon and other impurities, coal power
    plants produce heaps of radiation.


    the 'Denialists' Deck of Cards'

    " ... With "Duh!," the denialist deliberately misunderstands, misinterprets, or plays dumb when presented with others' questions or proposals. One is sometimes amazed at how smart an industry lobbyist can be until they're asked a question they don't want to answer!

    In the Hewlett-Packard pretexting scandal, this exchange between Rep. Eshoo and Fred Adler, a company investigator, is an excellent "duh" moment:

    ESHOO: ...If you say no, then I'll accept your answer.

    ADLER: OK.

    ESHOO: You said no?

    ADLER: No in regard to what?

    ESHOO: Well, you know what, you have to be smart to play dumb. So I think I've been pretty direct about my questions. I asked you if rusing has been used. And you asked me to define it. I give it to you, and then..." House Hearing on the Hewlett-Packard Pretexting Scandal, CQ Transcriptions, Sept. 28, 2006. ... "

    quote from

    54% of americans believe that drugs will never be legalized because
    the cops would have to buy their own.
                       - Poll taken for Michael Moore's "The Awful Truth"

    Mark Morford: Priests now coming with warning labels

    " ... Take the Archdiocese of New York. It has apparently just released a
    coloring book for kids all about how to be safe in an age of fear and
    predation. It is full of nice pictures of kids being sweet and
    virginal and right, engaging in happy activities that praise Almighty
    God while protecting themselves from, say, online predators and vegans
    and atheists. It is about awareness, about listening to your parents
    and saying your prayers and never, ever being alone with a priest and
    being nice to animals and never hitting your sister and ...

    Wait, what? What was that, about the priests? ... "

    'There are different ways of doing it. It's like swimming, freestyle, backstroke'

    Lawmakers Investigate CIA Interrogation Tape Disposal

    11 Dec 2007

    " ... GWEN IFILL: Let me ask Senator Bond a little bit about this issue of waterboarding. And let me describe for our viewers first to remind them what it is. It's when there's a piece of cloth that's placed over the mouth of a person who's been strapped down, and water is poured on their face so they feel like they're inhaling water, and it gives a sensation of drowning. Do you think that's torture?

    SEN. KIT BOND: First, let me go back and take issue with some of the things that have just been said. Number one, what the CIA is doing is not torture. It conforms to the Detainee Treatment Act, the Geneva Convention, the Convention against Torture. None of these things that are being used, by any stretch of the imagination, could be described as torture.

    Now, I think it was a terribly bad idea that in the intelligence authorization bill there was a ban imposed on the CIA using any techniques other than those in the Army Field Manual. The Army Field Manual is meant to advise junior officers in the field who are questioning the people picked up in the field who perhaps have tactical knowledge.

    The information in those field manuals are included in all of the al-Qaida training, and they know how to resist those. If we are to get any information from high-value detainees, such as the ones on whose these enhanced techniques were used, then there have to be different techniques.

    And I think, as a side note, I think it was absolutely outrageous that a former CIA agent would discuss these kinds of things, because once you describe what techniques are being used, and they are far less serious and threatening than techniques we use on Marines and pilots who go through our training, then the high-value detainees will never speak to us. That's why they used....

    GWEN IFILL: I just would like to -- but do you think that waterboarding, as I described it, constitutes torture?

    SEN. KIT BOND: There are different ways of doing it. It's like swimming, freestyle, backstroke. The waterboarding could be used almost to define some of the techniques that our trainees are put through, but that's beside the point. It's not being used.

    There are some who say that, in extreme circumstances, if there is threat of an imminent major attack on the United States, it might be used, but I certainly would not favor it in any circumstance... "

    ~ Full transcript ~

    'Contrary to belief, fluoridation is damaging teeth with little cavity reduction'

    Fluoridation Doing More Harm Than Good, Studies Show - New York State Coalition Opposed To Fluoridation, Inc

    12 May 2007
    Contrary to belief, fluoridation is damaging teeth with little cavity reduction, according to a review of recent studies reported in Clinical Oral Investigations.(1)

    Pizzo and colleagues reviewed English-language fluoridation studies published from January 2001 to June 2006 and write, "Several epidemiological studies conducted in fluoridated and non-fluoridated communities suggest that [fluoridation] may be unnecessary for caries prevention…"

    They also report that fluoride-damaged teeth spiked upwards to 51% from the 10-12% found over 60 years ago in "optimally" fluoridated communities. Dental fluorosis is white-spotted, yellow, brown-stained and/or pitted teeth.

    Fluoridation began in 1945 when dentists thought that ingested fluoride incorporated into children's developing tooth enamel to prevent cavities. However, Pizzo's group reports that fluoride ingestion confers little, if any, benefit and fails to reduce oral health disparities in low-income Americans.

    Also, any difference in fluoride tooth enamel surface concentration between fluoridated and low-fluoridated areas is minimal. And the relationship between higher enamel fluoride levels to less tooth decay was not found.

    "Some risk of increasing fluorosis may be attributed to the ingestion of powdered infant formula reconstituted with fluoridated water… [and] foods and beverages processed in fluoridated areas… Furthermore, the use of dietary fluoride supplements during the first 6 years of life is associated with a significant increase in the risk of developing fluorosis," they write.

    Lawyer Paul Beeber, President, New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation says, "Recent news reports claiming fluoride-free bottled water caused the cavity increase trends in toddlers are implausible because rising fluorosis rates clearly indicate that children are over-fluoridated, not under-fluoridated."

    "There's no dispute that too much fluoride damages teeth, actually making them more decay-prone. Research is indicated to see if fluoride is causing the cavity escalation," says Beeber.

    Some studies Pizzo reviewed focused on communities that stopped water fluoridation. "…after the cessation, caries prevalence did not rise, remained almost the same or even decreased further," writes Pizzo's group.

    "In most European countries, where [water fluoridation] has never been adopted, a substantial decline [75%] in caries prevalence has been reported in the last decades," they report.

    To avoid dental fluorosis, the American Dental Association and the Centers for Disease Control advise against mixing concentrated infant formulas with fluoridated water.

    "Fluoride is bone- and health-damaging as well," says Beeber.


    New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, Inc
    PO Box 263
    Old Bethpage, NY 11804 www.FluorideAction.Net
    Article URL:

    Ancient flood brought Gulf Stream to a halt

    6 Dec 2007 news service
    Fred Pearce

    " ... It was the biggest climate event of the last 10,000 years and caused the most dramatic change in the weather since humans began farming. And it may yet hold important lessons about climate change in the 21st century.

    Just over 8000 years ago, a huge glacial lake in Canada burst, and an estimated 100,000 cubic kilometres of fresh water rushed into the North Atlantic. Researchers now say they know for sure that this catastrophic event shut down the Gulf Stream and cooled parts of the northern hemisphere by several degrees for more than a hundred years.

    They say the findings show modelling studies are right to suggest that something similar could happen with equal abruptness as the planet warms under human influence. The film The Day After Tomorrow, which portrays such a scenario, may have exaggerated – but not by much. ... "

    ~ Read on... ~

    How the Nazis Stole Christmas

    A seasonal tale of politics, propaganda and paganism in Hitler's Third Reich
    By David Sutton
    December 2007
    If the Nazis were sworn enemies of Christianity, why were they so obsessed with Christmas? And how did they square celebrating the season of goodwill with their racialist policies?

    The Grateful Dead - The History of a Folk Story

    New addition at Sacred Texts:
    The Grateful Dead
    The History of a Folk Story
    by Gordon Hall Gerould
    "Every rock band has its own mythological creation story. The Grateful Dead claim that Jerry Garcia was looking through a 'large book' one day (no doubt in some altered state of mind), and the phrase just popped out at him. The specific book is unknown, but scholars of the band have suggested it was a large dictionary of folklore, with an article on the topic originally proposed in this book.

    The term The Grateful Dead originally referred to a set of folklore motifs relating to stories where the hero does a good turn for a dead person and gets rewarded thereby. This motif appears in a wide set of cultures, not all of which have an obvious connection. In the late 19th and early 20th century the field of folklore had matured to the point to where there was enough data to analyze these motifs cross-culturally. This book was one of the first to do a comprehensive study of one such motif on a world-wide basis, and as such occupies an important position in the study of folklore. Gerould analyzed over a hundred variants of the story, mostly from European, Near East and Asian sources. He used techniques originally used by comparative linguistics to compare the stories and untangle the development of the motif.

    Of course, there is also extensive folklore about the band of the same name, much of which I was exposed to in college. A popular motif in deadhead lore is the Magic Ticket. However, I've never encountered any variant where the Ticket appeared because someone did an actual dead person a favor. . . "

    Complete book at:

    'It's How You Slice the Pie (or stack the coins, or count the beans)...'

    FCNL Budget Analysis: It's How You Slice the Pie
    Why does FCNL's budget analysis differ from analyses by some other national
    groups - and why do they differ from each other?

    Among the handful of groups that monitor either the whole budget, or the
    parts of the budget devoted to military spending, the figures and
    percentages vary. The differences have to do with which specific programs
    each group includes in a "slice" and how finely they cut each slice.

    First - what pie? FCNL's analysis looks at the federal funds budget. This is
    the overall budget, including discretionary, entitlement, and mandatory
    spending, supported by general revenues, including income taxes and estate
    and gift taxes. Because the FCNL analysis aims to illustrate how our income
    dollars are spent, it does not include trust funds, such as Social Security
    and Medicare, which have their own dedicated revenues.

    Here's how that makes a difference: When president's proposal says that only
    21% of the budget goes to the military, it includes Social Security and
    Medicare in his definition of the budget. Because this analysis starts with
    a bigger pie (called the "unified budget"), the military appears as a
    relatively smaller slice, and social spending looks larger.

    Conversely, some national organizations look only at "discretionary
    spending" - the part of federal spending that Congress handles through
    appropriations bills. In this case, they're starting with a smaller budget
    pie than FCNL, so military spending appears to be a bigger slice.

    But Congress has control over entitlement or "mandatory" spending as well as
    discretionary spending. Changes can be (and often are) made in the budgets
    for entitlement programs - they're just made through a different
    congressional process. Whether discretionary or entitlement spending, the
    money still comes out of your income tax dollars.

    Second - what's included in the slice? When FCNL talks about military
    spending, we talk about two slices - current military spending and spending
    due to past wars and military activity. The first slice, current military
    spending, is what most other analyses report on and what is most
    understandable on Capitol Hill. On the Hill, decisions before Congress
    generally focus on current military spending rather than the
    already-accumulated responsibilities for past military spending. At the same
    time, we recognize that the obligations of past wars are indeed a component
    of military spending and should be taken into account when Congress
    considers new or additional military commitments.

    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) looks only at current military
    spending; some organizations add current and past military spending together
    and present just one figure.

    What's in the current military slice? FCNL's analysis of current military
    spending includes the following:
    . all spending for the Department of Defense (DOD).
    . the "050 function," a categorizing number that OMB uses to identify
    defense-related spending, regardless of the agency that spends the funds.
    This category includes funding in many "independent agencies" as well some
    parts of the Department of Homeland Security, parts of the Coast Guard, and
    other bits and pieces sprinkled through the budget.
    . responsibility for the Defense Department retirees as a military expense,
    although it is not listed as such by OMB.
    . portions of the foreign aid budget that are, in fact, military programs.
    These include the foreign military assistance accounts and international
    military training.

    In the past, we included portions of the National Aeronautics and Space
    Administration (NASA) budget. We no longer include that money because NASA
    changed its arrangements with the Defense Department so that any work done
    for the DOD by NASA is paid for out of the DOD's budget.

    Most analyses of current military spending are similar. Differences arise in
    how much is included from agencies that include some defense-related
    functions. See "how finely do you slice it?" below.

    What's in the "past military" slice? This slice includes primarily the
    Veterans' Administration and a portion of the interest paid on the federal

    This slice is where some of the big differences between FCNL's analysis and
    those of other groups arise. FCNL calculates the portion of the debt due to
    military spending by accumulating, year to year, the portion of each year's
    budget that went to military spending. We don't assume that the deficit
    would not have existed if military spending had been lower - we simply add
    up how much was added to the debt each year and allocate the percentage that
    was spent on the military that year. FCNL's current calculations show about
    47% of the debt is due to past military spending.

    How finely do you slice it? Some pies include some guesswork or assumptions
    about future congressional behavior. Some of these guesses may be fairly
    well rooted in recent experience and may be quite valid. FCNL has chosen to
    report only what the president proposes for the upcoming fiscal year and
    what was actually spent (outlays) in the past fiscal year.

    We also examine closely agencies with a "mixed" mission and include only
    specific military-related activities in our military numbers. For example,
    eighty-five percent of the budget of the Department of Homeland Security is
    allocated to immigration and border activities, the Federal Emergency
    Management Agency (FEMA), and the non-military activities of the Coast Guard
    (boat safety, rescues, etc.). While some of these activities are
    police-related, we do not categorize them as military activities.


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