Peace Is Profitable

leerip

 

In honor of my fallen brother’s birthday, I share one of his most memorable published articles… 

Most discussions about the costs of war focus on two numbers: the cost in dollars and cents and the more profound and heartbreaking cost in lives. Yet even as depressing as these numbers are, the figures discussed rarely encompass the whole truth. Over many generations those in power have learned there are benefits to keeping the populace as ignorant as possible when it comes to the true costs of war.

American politicians never talk about all the people killed in war, just American service members. Everyone else who is killed, even Americans arbitrarily classified as “enemy combatants,” are marginalized as mere collateral damage. Dollar costs consider only the “official” Defense Department budget, not the funds scattered and hidden throughout the federal budget. And the tally sheet deliberately excludes the cost of caring for the soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines physically and emotionally scarred by war.

The Eisenhower Study Group at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies has compiled a comprehensive study of the human, economic, social, and political costs of war. It’s available online. As you might imagine, the real numbers of wars we are involved in are staggering and stunning: more than 224,000 dead, more than 365,000 wounded, and more than 7 million refugees.

The total estimated cost to the American taxpayer for our current wars is $3 trillion to $4 trillion through 2020 — plus an additional $1 trillion just to pay the interest on the money borrowed to fund war. Funding war by borrowing money is one of the devices politicians have devised to pay for war, particularly for unpopular wars. This means our children must pay tomorrow for the wars we are involved in today.

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Liberty Will Never Perish

charlie-chaplin

One of the most moving and awe inspiring speeches of all time. Regardless of political identity and ideology, the vast majority of people in our country and beyond want to live in a society described in this epic speech. We simply have different ideas about how to build and nourish such a truly civilized civilization.

I happen to be a Libertarian. However, I acknowledge the fact that libertarians don’t have a monopoly on good ideas; folks from across the political (and non-political, of course) spectrum care about individual liberty and love for one’s neighbors.

Here at Healing Our World, everyone is welcome to sing their own song of Liberty, Love and Peace…

To those who can hear me, I say – do not despair. The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed – the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish. …..

In the 17th Chapter of St Luke it is written: “the Kingdom of God is within man” – not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people have the power – the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure.