online great books

#75- General Smedley D. Butler’s War is a Racket

This week, Scott and Karl read War is a Racket, the antiwar classic, written by one of America’s most decorated soldiers— General Smedley D. Butler.  When he published this essay in 1935, General Bulter was already a retired United States Marine Corps Major General and two-time Medal of Honor recipient.

In his essay, you’ll find that he argues against war because war is a racket. But what is a ‘racket’?

According to the General, “A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small ‘inside’ group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.”

His frank essay showcases how American war efforts were animated by big-business interests such as war profiteering. Tune in to hear Scott and Karl’s take, and learn just how General Bulter recommends disrupting the war racket.

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