The Specter of Fountains PastSo… today’s entry in the “WTF?” category: the ever-vigilant folks over at the Department of Homeland Security recently issued what they call “an open purchase order” for 1.6 BILLION rounds of ammunition. To put that in perspective: during the height of the Iraq War our armed forces there expended around 6 million rounds a month. So 1.6 billion rounds is enough ammunition to sustain a full blown shooting war, day in and day out, for over 20 years.

Tax-dollar payment for all that expensive ammunition will fund the college hopes of the next generation of Military Industrial Complex workers’ kids… which is ironic, since idiotic mandatory Sequestration spending cuts recently shut down most military school tuition aid for active servicemen and veterans. DHS agents are also having fun riding around in thousands of Mine Resistant armored personnel carriers recently back from the Middle East. Combined with 1.6 billion rounds of ammo, that’s a heck of a lot of handy government firepower lying around on American soil. Gosh, I feel safer already.

Meanwhile, our current batch of government watchdogs screams for civilian gun control… while hypocritically stockpiling scads of restricted weaponry and hemming and hawing over the threat of drone missile attacks against American citizens. Everyone takes turns either whining about the sequester or pretending it was a win for their side, but what the hell is the DHS doing spending ridiculous amounts of tax revenue to procure a mind-bogglingly stupid shit-ton of ammo it will probably never use (apart from paying off the arms industry lobby, that is)?

Well, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center has explained that the Homeland Security Department uses “as many as 15 million rounds every year, mostly on shooting ranges and in training exercises.” Nice. So they’re all set for the next hundred years. Though I guess as long as no one puts that ammo into 100 round capacity magazine clips (demonized by current gun-control pundits), the government doesn’t have any problem with it.

Big business now controls most of our government. That eventually turns into plutocracy (government by the richest), which in turn devolves into aristocracy (government by members of a perpetually wealthy social class comprised of the richest families). That’s exactly what government REGULATIONS— such as anti-trust laws, anti-monopoly laws, anti-conspiracy laws, and employee rights lawsare designed to prevent.

Just because no one bothers to actually call a multibillionaire “King So-and-So” doesn’t mean he functionally isn’t one. If a family sits atop a perpetual fountain of unlimited revenue enabling them to manipulate congress and the courts to keep them forever in power, they are a ruling dynasty, whether they hold hereditary “titles” or not. The titles themselves mean nothing— it’s all about the actual power they wield.

Pretending that fiscal wealth, and feudal nobility, are different things is essentially a handy illusion fostered by the monied elite to convince the less-wealthy that everyone shares an equal playing field of achievement. That’s a shallow deception fostering the callous rationalization of personal profit at the expense of the quality of human life among the general public, and the health of hapless consumers with no means of redress against those who benefit at their expense. This is corporate excess at its most disturbing level.

Left to its own devices, government oversight is a crock. Only truth, and rational objectivity, can police a den of thieves.

NOTICE: This article was rewritten on 3/14/2013, because the original version referenced some made-up internet crap since-debunked by snarky researchers at We therefore celebrate “pie” day as “pie in the face” day, since our unwitting repetition of such digital bullshit makes us grimace with self-loathing and disgust. Let this sad episode never be mentioned again. – Editor