04 July 2011

A Cure for Patriotism

Patriotism makes me uneasy. It makes me feel like someone is about to sell me an aircraft carrier.

I suppose that people would be less supportive of wars if they had to pay for them. The occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan will cost about $3.7 trillion. That works out to about $12,000 for every American, or nearly $50,000 for a family of four. If getting a war meant having to come up with the $50,000 up front,I think that lots of families would simply opt to tour Europe rather than invade the Middle East.

If we set up such a budget arrangement, we might have a world where people supported war and soldiers in the same way that they supported living on the French Rivera: they might love the idea of it but simply know that they can't afford it.

Oh, Happy 4th of July!

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