Charles Keefer's Blog

A Peaceful New Year

with one comment

To all my friends, all the best in the new year. I mean that sincerely.

That’s what I said on Facebook.

I was prompted by Maria Garcia who said “Wishing all my friends a beautiful and peaceful new year.”

I won’t argue with her sentiments, but what I wanted to say was “Maria, are you aware that we have two foreign wars going on?”

Of course, that depends on how you count them. Here’s how I count them.

– Half a war in Iraq. We still have troops there.
– Half a war in Pakistan. We have troops (Shhhh! It is a secret.) and we have drones there.
– And a full war in Afghanastan.

Only the CIA knows how many small percentage wars we have where special forces and drones are killing people.

You could say we still have some kind of war on in both Germany and Japan since we still have troops there from a war that was over in 1945. I wasn’t even born in 1945.

We still have troops in South Korea where the shooting stopped in 1953. I was four-years-old when that war came to a stalemate.

So exactly how is it that we are supposed to have a peaceful New Year? By wishing for it?

If only that were true.

One thing is undoubtedly true. Whether it is a quiet war, like ours in Germany, or a shooting war, like ours in Afghanastan, the people who supply it are getting rich.

So Maria, with a bow to your to your thoughts for a peaceful new year, it probably would be easier if you wished for a prosperous new year. Just buy Haliburton.

WASHINGTON, Sept. 15 ( — War and skyrocketing oil prices have been good to Halliburton’s CEO David Lesar, whose stock in the company increased by an estimated $78 million since the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, a HalliburtonWatch analysis reveals.

In March 2003, the first month of the Iraq invasion, corporate disclosure records show Lesar owned 1.476 million common shares and share options in Halliburton worth $30 million. At the end of stock trading yesterday, those shares were worth $93 million, for a $63 million gain. Subsequent to the Iraq invasion, Lesar boosted his total holdings in the company from $93 million to $108 million by acquiring a net 243,000 additional shares, thereby increasing his stock holdings by $78 million since March 2003.


Written by Charles Keefer

December 31, 2010 at 8:06 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. Interesting observation about the war in Germany and Japan. I just finished reading an excellent book called Roots of Steel, a history of the 99-year rise and fall of Bethlehem Steel.

    A management and the unions share the blame for its demise. The biggest nail in the coffin was World War II, which let the company make huge profits, which they DIDN’T spend on R&D and modernization.

    Japan and German’s steel industry had been bombed flat during the way, which meant they had the luxury of starting almost from scratch with the most efficient equipment of the day. Before long, they ate out lunch.

    When Bethlehem went on the auction block, pensions and health benefits for retirees took a major, if not complete, hit. The book points out that most post-war developing countries looked at health care as a responsibility of society as a whole.

    The U.S. tied health care to employment, and we’ve seen how well THAT works out if you lose your job.

    Ken Steinhoff

    December 31, 2010 at 8:31 pm

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