Tag Archives: government

War is the Health of the State: The Impact of Military Defense on the History of the United States by Jeffrey Hummel :: SSRN

8 Oct

There you have it: the primary function of the state is to wage war.

Abstract: Of all the functions of government, or the State, national defense is generally considered to be the most essential. Ideally, national defense should be a service provided by government to the people. The service entails protection from aggressors outside the State’s jurisdiction, usually foreign States although sometimes foreign terrorists. Yet a government’s ability to provide such protection ultimately rests on its power to wage war. Governments therefore have tended to devote more resources to war than to anything else. Indeed, prior to the advent of the modern welfare State, they usually spent more on war than on all other things combined. Governments were essentially war making institutions that did a few other things on the side. As a result, the history of nearly all governments is dominated by the conduct of wars, the preparation for wars, and the consequences of wars; and this is no less true for the United States government than for any other.

This manuscript therefore surveys the domestic repercussions of past U.S. wars, from the American Revolution through World War II. Not only did the State swell in authority, reach, and intrusiveness while waging war, but also a postwar ratchet effect almost always left government in America more powerful after the fighting was over. Post-war retrenchment was rarely sufficient to bring government back to its prewar levels. The State had assumed new functions, taken on new responsibilities, and exercised new prerogatives. The impacts of modernization, urbanization, economics, demography, complexity, or other domestic developments pale in comparison. Of all the myriad factors that historians have studied and identified as contributing to the evolution, contours, and scope of government at all levels within this country, none is more crucial, pervasive, and ubiquitous than warfare.

via War is the Health of the State: The Impact of Military Defense on the History of the United States by Jeffrey Hummel :: SSRN.

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Open Letter to Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich: Come Together, Right Now

20 Mar

Dear Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich,

I urge you to put your respective strengths together on a firm foundation built by back-to-basics Austrian and Buddhist economics. A casual reading of G. Bateson, E. F. Schumacher, John Ruskin, anyone who has thought long and hard about the profound evil embodied in “central banking,” war preparations and “Fed manipulations” everywhere, will give you the tools and bricks you need to build a Reform Party and/or an Americans Elect TEAM based on emergent truths and the oldest traditions.

At the Truth & Traditions party website (cranks and planks without a platform or an actual political party) you will find arguments, positions, reports, a Declaration of Interdependence, some of what you will need to create a balanced platform and a beyond-bi-partisan Sunshine Cabinet whose members and many surrogates can campaign with you this summer and fall.

The key to this Sunshine Cabinet is the creation of a Peace Department (Kucinich in charge?) and an Ecology Department (Bill McKibben or Andrew Kimbrell in charge?), each department NEVER to exceed a size sustainable by a quarter of one percent of the current Defense Department budget. In truth, each department needs only a few dozen people to gather up the long-term thinking and best practices of diverse Great Transition communities, colleges, universities, institutes, limited and democratic governments around the world that work for the best interests of their peoples. These two very small and extremely cost-effective departments can shape and pass on as many proposals to Congress, Executive and Judicial branches as are needed. Continue reading

Moscow Protests Continue Week Before Russians Vote on Putin – NYTimes.com

26 Feb

Are these Russinas setting  an example for Americans? Do they care about their government’s future more than we care about ours?

The Kremlin has been shaken by the recent emergence of the protest movement among middle-class Muscovites, who only a few months ago were considered to be largely politically indifferent. But tens of thousands have braved subzero temperatures, occasional arrests and the loss of weekend shopping time to attend boisterous protests against Mr. Putin’s rule.

On Sunday, amid slush-clogged streets and a steady snow, a carnival atmosphere prevailed, with vendors handing out free hot tea and pancakes to mark the last day before the beginning of Orthodox Lent.

via Moscow Protests Continue Week Before Russians Vote on Putin – NYTimes.com.