Monday, April 8, 2013

The Common Good - 3

Nuclear Aftermath - Hiroshima
In this series we are wondering about what happened to our national understanding of "the common good."

Several years ago on this date a Dredd Blog post argued that military war machinations around the world have caused and are causing impoverishment in the public sector.

Therefore, it follows that militarism run amok is not in accord with the very American concept we call the common good.

The title of that post was Economy of Destruction Reaps Poverty, and here is the text from that post:

How much would you pay a hurricane to come through your town or city and wreak havoc, destruction, and death?

Or an earthquake?

Or a flood?

Or a tornado?

Or a fire?

Did you know that modern armies can wreak more havoc, destruction, and death than all of those combined?

In the USA's arsenal alone is enough WMD to destroy all human life on earth several times over:
However, what's different about this weapon? In our past, we've discovered gunpowder, rocketry and TNT - but they've never threatened all life on Earth as we know it. This is because all weapons in the past have never had the capacity to act on such a global scale, where as weapons based on Element 92 - nuclear weapons - can quite easily cause a 'nuclear winter' by throwing up enough dust into the atmosphere to prevent light from the sun reaching us. There are still close to 50,000 nuclear weapons in the world. More than enough to finish off the entire human race.
(Think Quest, emphasis added). That considers only the nuclear destructive capacity.

There are biological, chemical, and other WMD that can do total annihilation too.

Yet each year the United States still pays more money for armies than all the rest of the world combined.

So what does an investment in havoc, destruction, and death produce?

Does it produce homes, stores, clothing, food, roads, infrastructure, or compassion for the weak among us?

No, instead the purpose of havoc, destruction, and death is to destroy those things.

So why does the US spend $623,000,000,000 EVERY YEAR on destruction, then wonder why it is having financial problems?

The answer is because of deceit and propaganda. See posts here, here, here, and here.

A substantial portion of that money is used to sell people on the need for the capacity to wreak havoc, destruction, and death.

If we don't have the capacity to destroy, they say, we will suffer havoc, destruction, and death. They teach that MAD, mutually assured destruction, is the only way to stop destruction. Which is a tad disingenuous isn't it?

They scare us with propaganda against "the axis of evil" and dangerous enemies.

For example, remember that dangerous enemy Russia? Russia spends $50 billion a year, and China spends $65 billion a year on the military.

Those two big military powers, which the propagandists have used to scare the willies out of us, together only spend $115 billion a year to our $653 billion a year.

We spend 5.7 times more than the both of them combined, so their people must be really, really scared of us?

All the world together, besides the USA, spends $500 billion annually on their military.

The USA spends $653 billion annually on the military.

The whole world can't keep up with our insatiable spending spree on WMD. Six billion people can't outspend 300 million people. Twenty people can't outspend 1 person?

During the Bush II years we spent $5,000,000,000,000 on destructive things. That is enough to build about 33,400,000 homes at $150,000 each. Or enough to do a lot of good instead of a lot of destruction.

The share of each American each year is roughly $2,000.00; yes, an amount in effect paid by each man woman and child; but it is much more per person if only working people are considered for the source of those taxes.

There is little wonder that a people who spend so much on destructive machines, which have no other economic worth, would have financial problems is there?

Back to today's post.

Two statesmen, who were also U.S. Presidents, who were aware of the relevant factors, and whose life experiences cover a long span of time in our nations history, put it like this:
"Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied: and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people. The same malignant aspect in republicanism may be traced in the inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and in the degeneracy of manners and of morals, engendered by both. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. Those truths are well established." - James Madison


"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children." - Dwight Eisenhower
The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

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