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With the predictable failure of the “Super Committee,” Washington is now coasting toward mandatory cuts to the holiest of holies within the Beltway: the defense budget. Against this backdrop, David Trilling’s excellent investigative piece in Foreign Policy, entitled “Propagandastan,” uncovers one of the most ridiculous wastes of taxpayer funds ever: the payment of tens of millions of dollars to a subsidiary of the massive defense contractor General Dynamics for the purpose of whitewashing the human rights records of dictators in Central Asia. How does this advance America’s national security? Presumably the Pentagon will get around to explaining that, someday.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
From the June 2014 issue
Number of countries thought to possess chemical weapons:
Placebos are more effective if the drugs for which they stand in are said to be more expensive.
In Torrance, California, an African grey parrot named Nigel, who once spoke English with a British accent and had returned home after a four-year absence, began asking for someone named “Larry” and speaking Spanish.
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“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”