bb-mic-91 - An Historical Perspective on the Future of the

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
An Historical Perspective on the Future of the Military-Industrial Complex BRUCE BRUNTON* James Madison University Recent geopohtlcal changes have raised expectations of substantial future cuts m U S defense spending Such speculation implies a significant weakemng of the Amencan mlhtary-mdustnal complex Thus article offers an interpretation of the mlhtary-mdustnal complex that differs both conceptually and hlstoncally from the consensus m the literature Rather than conceptuahzmg the mlhtary-mdustnal complex as a network of groups, an objectifiable entity shaded, often lmphcitly, m consplratorlal tones, It 1s argued that the mlhtary-mdustnal complex should be conceived of as a system of five mstltutlons These mstltutlons reflect evolving patterns of behavior and their ongms can be traced back to the late 19th and early 20th centunes An hlstoncal analysis of this system of mstltutlons 1s developed to support the conclusion that the underlying dynamics that spawned and sustained the mlhtary-mdustnal complex m the past are likely to continue m the near future even with a dlmmlshed Soviet threat In recent months there have been a number of speculations as to whether the Cold War 1s over and, if it is, what would be the character of a post Cold War era. In these speculations the fate of the mlhtary-mdusmal complex has not been mentioned Perhaps it 1s assumed that the mlhtary-mdustnal complex (MIC), usually concep- tualized as a creature of the Cold War arms race, ~111 wither as tensions between the U S and the U S S R dlsslpate The assumption would be that such tensions have been necessary to Justify wartlme levels of military spendmg durmg “peacetime” and it 1s this spending pattern which is often Identified as a mamfestatlon of the MIC The premise of this article 1s that m order to mtelhgently speculate on the future of the MIC, it 1s necessary to have an understandmg of its ongms and the dynamics that have shaped its hlstoncal development The first sectlon presents a definition of the MIC and sketches its orlgms m the United States In the second sectlon a thesis 1s developed to explain the emergence of the MIC m the late 19th century The thesis is used m the thu-d section to support an interpretation of changes m foreign and defense pohcles m the mterwar period and the adjustment of the MIC to new condltlons *Dxect all correspondence to Bruce Brunton, Department of Economxs, James Ma&son Umverslty, Hamson- burg, VA 22807 Telephone 703-568-645 1 The Social Science Journal, Volume 28, Number 1, pages 45-62. Copynght 0 1991 by JAI Press Inc. All rights of reproduction in any form reserved. ISSN: 0362-3319.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
46 THE SOCIAL SCIENCE JOURNAL Vol 2WNo. l/1991 IS discussed In the final sectton the htstortcal analysis is drawn upon to evaluate the current and future prospects of the MIC It will be argued that the underlymg dynamics that gave nse to and sustamed the MIC m the past are still evident and likely to contmue m the near future.
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 05/24/2011 for the course ECON 488 taught by Professor Brunton during the Spring '11 term at James Madison University.

Page1 / 18

bb-mic-91 - An Historical Perspective on the Future of the

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online