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Tuesday, January 02, 2007


I’ve been away for a few weeks, and getting back into the work groove has been a bit slow for me, so I’ve spent some time catching up on some blogs. Michael Silence, who I respect and read often, posts something today that catches my eye. He authors a post about “perspective on the costs of war.” Now Michael, like many others, is against the Iraq war. I can respect that. There are myriad objections to war, from the absurd to the sensible. However, I fail to grasp the comparison Michael makes between dollars allocated to a war (whether it is endorsed or not) to dollars potentially allocated to global social ills.

As far as I can tell, Michael’s proposal is to allocate American taxpayer dollars to negate maladies which have their root cause either in poor choices, poor regulation, or poor circumstance. There is no amount of money that will ever eradicate a malady of choice. “Four million smokers die annually.” This is an example of a poor choice by four million individuals. Will the US war expenditures cure smokers’ deaths? Highly unlikely. Reading over Michael’s list, I believe that the issues that are preventable could be prevented without spending very much. Power plant pollution killing Americans? Try using nuclear power instead of electric power. Thirteen million people dying from preventable environmental causes? Try eliminating the ban on DDT. And if children are being born into less fortunate societies, is there anything realistically that tax money can do to prevent it? Are we going to hand out condoms instead of fighting the war in Iraq? I don’t believe even Michael is advocating that.

What I think is that all of Michael’s listed global ailments are tragic in their own rite. But I, unlike Michael, believe that a war in Iraq, where we are fighting terrorists where they live instead of on American soil, is an enterprise worth undertaking. I believe no amount of money that is thrown at the things Michael lists will ever prevent them. I believe a diligent, well-financed, and purposed war in the Middle East against an evil perversion of Islam and its adherents, adherents that want nothing less than the destruction of Western civilization, is a far more necessary and worthy endeavor. After all, without the Western world, there will be no one to tackle those unfortunate situations anyway.

.: posted by Dave 5:02 PM

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