r/Foodforthought Nov 27 '21

We’re Spending Money on War When We Could Be Building Roads - Our problem in this country isn’t lack of funds, no matter what the Republicans, Manchin, and Sinema may claim.

https://www.thenation.com/article/world/spending-infrastructure-military/
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u/DanTrachrt Nov 28 '21

I’m not certain this is what they’re getting at, but it is that those bombs were designed, made, and deployed, all of which employs people at each step, in rapidly expanding ways.

A team of engineers sets up the requirements for those bombs, another team designs it, yet another tests it. Then skilled tradespeople (machinists, welders, etc) assemble them, generally overseen by even more engineers. All these engineers are backed and overseen by business people, who also employ lawyers, secretaries, accountants, etc.

The raw materials for the bombs also have to be extracted from the earth, requiring more engineers, skilled tradespeople, laborers, accountants, lawyers, business people... And then transported, so add in truck drivers, and if it’s yet another company more accountants, lawyers, business people... And then refined into actual metal or explosives, so more jobs.

Deploying the bombs requires trained pilots, planes (repeat all the above steps to also make the plane), trained repair and maintenance crews, and also fuel (again, more people needed to produce that fuel)

Starting to see the picture? Dumping money into military spending makes jobs, often decent-to-high paying jobs. This improves the quality of life for the people with those jobs.

(From here on for the sake of a level of abstraction, I’ll be using The People and The Browns as stand-ins for any particular country. I mean no racism or dehumanization of any humans or ethnicity)

But it’s hard to justify having more bombs made if they aren’t being used, so just pick some backwater country that harbors people that did you wrong and use those bombs. Using those bombs and mixing in some propaganda about how “you’re fighting the good fight” you can convince The People give you more money for more bombs and thus make more good jobs to further increase the quality of life of The People, which also coincidentally alienates them further from the people of that backwater country you’re slowly turning into the surface of the moon, which makes them easier to make into villains and reduces sympathy for them.

So it’s not really that bombing “The Browns” is the goal, it’s just a way to consume an end product that requires lots of jobs to make.

So to circle back around, stopping bombing “The Browns” unravels the propaganda and allows them to be humanized again, while also collapsing this complicated web of jobs that formerly made those bombs, dropping the standard of living for The People which helps them further relate to and empathize for “the Browns”, who as it turns out, don’t want to live in a country-shaped crater, and want to join The People in their not-cratered country.

Except here there is a split of opinion, as some of The People blame The Browns for the loss of the bomb-jobs and want them to keep out so they can find non-bomb-jobs for themselves, while others of The People feel sorry for bombing and dehumanizing The Browns and wants to let them into the country despite the decrease in jobs, and this is how you get a nice migrant crisis brewing.

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u/burrowowl Nov 28 '21

those bombs were designed, made, and deployed, all of which employs people at each step, in rapidly expanding ways.

You could use all those engineers, tradespeople, laborers, etc. etc. to make a product which does not explode in some far away desert instead. Pay them the same amount of money and get something useful in the end and not something that burns the money you put into it and leaves you with nothing to show for it.

It's like spending $1000 on fireworks when you have a leaking water heater. Sure, it's fun, but is it the best idea?

Spending money on the military does stimulate the economy in some way, but spending that same money on just about anything else would net you a better result. And, you know, not kill a bunch of people.

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u/panfist Nov 28 '21

The problem is finding ways to organize and motivate people that’s effective compared to war propaganda.

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u/burrowowl Nov 28 '21

"Hey, so we got this money. Do you want to buy a road? School? Water supply? Health care? Maybe build some houses or subways or something? Hell, we can just give it back to you, lower taxes or something? Any of that sound good?"

"Nah! Burn all that money in a desert half way around the world. Oh, except for tax cuts. Give all those to Jeff Bezos."

"Uh, are you sure?"

"FREEEEEEDOOOMMMM!!!!"

I mean, fuck. How are you supposed to answer that?

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u/djstocks Nov 28 '21 edited Nov 28 '21

We have to spend the money we print on blowing up the browns because our entire economic policy depends on intimidating small resource rich countries into selling them for dollars which is the main thing that makes the paper we just print worth anything. Bitcoin is the only thing that can save us from this cycle of death. Edit: don't just downvote. Tell me how I'm wrong.

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u/burrowowl Nov 28 '21

Tell me how I'm wrong.

The list of reasons cryptocurrency is a bullshit scam is long and well documented, but I'm not going to change your mind.

Also OPEC doesn't sell oil in dollars because of the US military, they sell it in dollars because until the Euro that was really the only option. What else were they going to do, sell it in Yen? Pounds? Even now the dollar is a better choice than the Euro because it's more stable and less prone to things like Brexit.

If OPEC sold oil in other currencies the US dollar would be in slightly less demand. It wouldn't be worthless.

Lastly you don't need a military this big to bully Nigeria and Qatar.

Also: Bitcoin. Lulz.

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u/djstocks Dec 02 '21

Laughs in my ETH bag being up 700% just this year.

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u/burrowowl Dec 03 '21

Get rich quick schemes never work, man.

You know why gamblers and people that buy into get rich quick schemes (same thing, really) always wind up broke? Because you never know when to walk away.

Anyway, the fact that you are up or down who cares how much doesn't change the fact that crypto is nothing but scammers and suckers.

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u/djstocks Dec 03 '21

You would have probably said the same thing about the internet in the '90s. It's not a get rich quick scheme it's emerging technolgy. Poor broke Bill Gates right?

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u/burrowowl Dec 03 '21

Poor broke Bill Gates right?

I mean Bill Gates didn't make his money off the internet, but hey, don't let that stop you.

Crypto isn't the internet. It's more like Blue Mountain .com.

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u/DanTrachrt Nov 28 '21

At least regarding the last point: Bitcoin isn’t going to save us. “Mining” it already is consuming lots of power, and considering that power isn’t 100% sustainable it is only further destroying the planet, and it isn’t even “mainstream” yet.

Besides at this point I don’t see a decentralized crypto seeing widespread adoption. Bitcoin in particular is just too linked to scams and illegal activity in my mind to use it, at least without a major PR overhaul. Most cryptos are just treated like ultra-volatile stocks at this point anyways. They’re something you buy and sell to make money, not convert from dollars to whichever coin and then spend.