"If the major opportunities for future growth of government lie in the area of conventional taxation, are there any defenses available to the citizenry? ... Perhaps the most fruitful advice comes in two parts. The first piece of advice is to avoid war and the rumor of war: this is history's greatest boon to the tax man. ... The second piece of advice is to seek ways of inhibiting government's ability conveniently to increase its collections. Possibly the very increase in that ability that is in prospect can be turned to account by a constitutional provision which forbade the income tax, and perhaps even the storage of information regarding individual incomes by third parties, including government." ~ Benjamin Ward
A War Is Coming? Nah!
Column by Paul Bonneau.
Exclusive to STR
I remember the day my Dad came home driving one of the earliest Toyota Coronas sold over here, rather than his usual Ford. It was amusing to see this big man in a little car. It was also strange to see him driving a Japanese product since he had fought in Iwo Jima and Okinawa during the war. One might naturally think those awful conflicts would have soured him on anything Japanese forever, rather than seeing him being an early adopter. He loved that little car, and it was far from the last Toyota we had in our family.
But then, he was always pretty open-minded; I remember one war story he told. He was in charge of the engine room in an LCT (Landing Craft Tank). At one point a Japanese pilot (wisely) decided not to give his life for the Emperor as a Kamikaze, and downed his plane in the sea. The skipper told the men to just shoot the pilot, but Dad was having none of that. He got them to go over and pick the pilot up, and as far as we know, the pilot did survive the war.
It’s funny how commerce can soothe the savage mind. Can we even imagine going to war with Japanese or Germans any more? It’s inconceivable. This is not 1940s America any more, with no exposure to foreign products or foreign media, and with our domestic media completely controlled by the information gatekeepers. In fact, the word “foreign” even seems a bit quaint. With the Internet, foreigners are no longer foreign to us.
I don’t know how often I’ve read or heard the fatalistic prediction over on lewrockwell.com about how our fading empire must end up in a major war, just because that is what fading empires always do. I’m not buying it.
The only reason we have all the little brushfire wars we do have, is because they cause no dislocations domestically. The age of massive mobilization appears to be over. The last time that was tried--Vietnam--almost generated a revolution. How can you have a major war without a draft? The wars we have these days are only possible because the military has transitioned toward “no-risk” soldiering. We’ve been warring for many years now with tiny numbers of casualties; drone pilots sit in air-conditioned comfort with a can of pop on the counter as they do their killing.
I understand that it’s no comfort to the victims of these wars that the troops are not as destructive as the typical WWII army, but the American people hardly know these brush fires are going on. There is no draft, no rationing, and no inconvenience whatever, just the occasional news story about a soldier who volunteered to mess around in somebody else’s country. Those few troops who do manage to get themselves killed, well, they signed up for that risk, didn’t they? Just as I did when I was young. Teenage boys stuffed to the gills with government school propaganda are usually not the most rational people around . . . .
Yes, the ruling class is always trying to whip up war fever, but how well is that working out? The Japanese went to war with the US because the US government cut off their oil supplies, causing major disruption to their economy. Seriously, are we going to war with China because they won’t lend us enough money to piss away on idiotic government programs? No, we aren’t. Yeah, a bit of Islamophobia has taken root here, but still, how serious is it? I spent some time in the Middle East some years ago, and the notion that such a thinly-settled and backward population could be a threat is absurd. Whenever our government wants to grab their oil, it just goes ahead and does it. Will our entire country be mobilized to fight the deadly Muslim menace? Don’t make me laugh.
No, major war is not in our future. If Iran is invaded, it will be about like it was when Iraq was invaded, except they won’t even have that much “success.” It will just be another idiocy, demonstrating how evil and stupid the ruling bastards are. What is much more likely is more of the same thing we have already--the crony class grabbing oil here and there from weak African and Middle Eastern countries, expending a very few volunteer U.S. troops to do it.
The only real major war threat that is on the horizon is revolution here at home--if they are stupid enough to continue on their current repressive course once they accomplish the destruction of the dollar. That will be a bad one, but in the end, we may well be rid of the rulers. Every cloud has its silver lining.