2013 Cold War
Victory Day Speech
By Vince Milum,
(Delivered April 25, 2013 at 9:40 in
the morning before the Board of County Commissioners of Johnson
County, Kansas; view
video of this speech
beginning at the eleven minute mark; we apologize for the audio
Chairman Eilert, County Commissioners, Honored Guests, and members
of the Cold War Veterans Association who will view this speech
I stand before you today as a proud Cold
War Veteran who believes in many of the conservative principles that
helped guide us to victory in the Cold War.
Perhaps the defining element of our
victory was an emphasis on strategic thinking during the Reagan
Administration, the period in which I served.
Today I call for a renewed emphasis on
strategic thinking and ask that you join me in looking at new
realities with unfiltered lenses.
Among these realities is that the United
States can no longer afford to account for 40% of all military
spending in the world.
Spending so much of our GDP on the military has what economists
refer to as a “crowding-out effect” meaning that both public and
private investments are denied funds though the needs may be very
Another reality is that it is both
morally and strategically wrong to make incarceration a for-profit
industry. Because of this
short-sighted approach, we have one of the highest incarceration
rates in the world and yet we provide no real incentives for
Related to the preceding is our
under-treatment of the mentally ill and the underfunding of the
resources to treat the mentally ill.
Despite our collective cognitive dissonance to the contrary,
the fact is effective treatment of the mentally ill will result in a
significant reduction in the crime rate and the number of incidents
of mass violence in our nation.
In summary, as we
celebrate our victory in the Cold War, I ask that you join with me
in becoming twenty-first
century citizens who recognize the need to now redirect our public
finances toward helping those most in need.
In so doing, we will all reap the benefits when non-producing
citizens are able to make a contribution to the society that has
eliminated the stigma of mental illness and forgiven others of their
Once again, I thank each and every one
of you for your time and I invite you to personally contact me if
you would like to discuss these proposals in greater detail.