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The Culture of Contentment$
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John Kenneth Galbraith

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691171654

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691171654.001.0001

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The Military Nexus, I

The Military Nexus, I

(p.95) Chapter 10 The Military Nexus, I
The Culture of Contentment

John Kenneth Galbraith

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the role of the military in the community of contentment. During the past half century, Communism was considered the most obtrusive threat to contentment. The perception that the military was a bulwark against Communism was the most significant support to the deeply embedded position of the military establishment in the culture of contentment. Fear of Communism was deep and fundamental in the psyche of the contented. Imperiled freedom, loss of liberty, was much cited; especially acute was the threat to private property. The chapter considers how the fear of Communism gave rise to a major development in the military power as that existed in the political economy of contentment: a further enormous increase in military and defense spending as the constituency of contentment gained full power in the 1980s—the arms buildup under Ronald Reagan.

Keywords:   military, Communism, contentment, military power, military spending, defense spending, arms buildup, Ronald Reagan

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