In the United States 2/3 of our budget is spent on the military. This is an incredible waste of money. It is a waste and furthermore it is criminal because it is not spent on defense, rather it is spent on offense.
It would be bad enough if that was the whole picture but it isn’t. Because of the United States’ track record and the fact that there is no indication that our behavior is going to change, we have forced many other countries to spend lots of money on defense; in this case, really for defense.
Take Iran, for example. Bush the 2nd named Iran as part of the “axis of evil.” By the second year of his administration the United States had overthrown the government of Afghanistan, on Iran’s eastern border, and then in short order also Iraq, one of the other two countries in the “axis”, on Iran’s western border. And when John McCain was running for president in 2008 and was asked what his policy regarding Iran would be, he smiled and said, “the old Beach Boys song, Bomb Iran.” Then sang, “bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran.” It’s not surprising Iran would feel the need to build up their military capabilities. We are told to fear Iranian aggression but truth is Iran hasn’t attacked another country in over 200 years.
Take North Korea, as another example. As the third country named as part of the “axis of evil” it is not surprising that North Korea would feel the need to build up its military. Add to that the fact that the United States talked Libya into giving up its WMDs, then overthrew their government, wasting the country in the process. Then officials in the Trump administration openly suggested using the “Libya model” on North Korea. Is it any wonder they would also feel the need to build up their military and defense; again, actually defense. In fact is should be obvious to anybody paying attention that North Korea’s nuclear build-up is also for defense, as a deterrent to US aggression.
Certainly Iran and North Korea didn’t suddenly start building up their militaries when Bush declared them to be the “axis of evil.” Those countries have long before Bush been targets of the American empire. I cite the “axis” declaration only to highlight how blatant the threat is to other countries. The United States has a nightmarish track record of overthrowing governments all over the world.
So, back to the point. For every dollar that the United States wastes on military adventurism, there is some money thrown away somewhere else in the world by a country needing legitimate defense against the United States or a neighboring country that we arm. This money all represents time and labor; effort towards an end. That is energy that could be better spent.
In a sane world, while people and countries would still have differences, the issues between nations would be the struggling with the issue of how we can manage time, labor, and resources in such a way that we can all sustainably have a decent standard of living. The quest for a comfortable life would go on but unimpeded by so much counterproductive energy. Inspiration and creativity would be towards constructive ends, rather than destructive ends. The “swords into plowshares” saying would also be about turning soldiers into men and women using their talents to create life, not take it.
Instead, money and resources are squandered increasing our standard of killing instead of standard of living. At this point in history the United States is the world’s biggest and baddest belligerent. When such a country spends so much money on war and aggression, that waste is amplified throughout the world.
The snowballing effect of the waste of labor, ideas, energy, and resources leads to impoverishing the world. Not just the moral degradation of putting so much effort into weaponry, but literally sucking money out of the hands of the people of the world.