Soldiers Stressed by More Than Bullets
|June 14, 2012||Posted by Jeffery J. Smith under The Geonomist Blog|
Some of my friends (not a scientific sample) joined the military because they could not find work, never mind start a business. Some of them reenlisted because when their time was up, the economy was still bad. So they chose to risk killing and being killed, rather than become unemployed or financially ignored by lenders and investors and become unable to support themselves and/or their family. Hence now they have that financial stress on top of the stress of being a cog in a killing machine. Which is what makes this an issue of economic justice.
In a just economy, people don’t have to turn to the military for work or customers (as do military contractors). More fundamentally, is war what governments should be spending so much public revenue on? Today’s wars are not making anyone any safer. They’re just making insiders in governments at home and abroad a lot, lot richer. Soldier suicide is another reason why belligerent policy comes at too high a price.
One reason people go to war, obviously, is for land. Other main reasons are economic: control resources, control trade routes, support a regime that oppresses its people so they’ll keep working for peanuts — not very noble reasons. Yet all those economic goals can be attained without waging war but by adopting geonomics.
Following geonomic policy, people would pay land dues, which would take the profit out of speculation in land and resources, so their prices would tumble, and everyone could afford a parcel of their own. People would not pay taxes on their earnings or sales or buildings, so investors could profit sufficiently in their domestic market, fostering plenty of opportunity to find work or start a business. We’d have a vibrant peacetime economy.
And there are the psychological reasons. First, feeling materially secure, people could not be spooked so easily, so fewer would vote for war mongerers. Their politicians would have a harder time waging war and wasting public revenue.
Second, the icing on the cake: if a healthy portion of the land dues paid in came back to citizens as a dividend (a la Alaska’s oil dividend), then more people could feel a stronger tie to the land that supports them, feel more like an Earthling, and be able to see others as members of the same species and less like threatening foreigners.
As they say, if you want peace, work for justice. And if you want justice, work for geonomics. It has paved the way for peace wherever it has been tried.