David McWilliams: We're the losers in silent takeover of democracy
On January 7 1961, Dwight Eisenhower, then the outgoing US President and former General of the US Army -- a military man to his toes -- made an extraordinary reference to the threat that the US military posed to American society and its economy.
In his final speech as President -- one made at the height of the Cold War -- Eisenhower referred to the potential threat of the "military industrial complex". He described an iron triangle of interests involving the defence industry, the military itself and the State Department.
"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes.