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Masters of Disasters -- Stranded on the Sidelines

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On an increasingly resource strapped planet where almost 7 billion of us are distantly related brothers and sisters, these kinds of painful narratives are more and more common:

Over 3,000 Americans died on September 11, 2001, because enough devilishly smart people had grown to be terrorists.
911 explosion tower

Over 10,000 died and 80,000 were affected by a 2004 tsunami in Sri Lanka, with thousands more dying in Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia."

Over 75,000 died after an earthquake in Pakistan in 2004.

Over 1,800 lost their lives and $80 billion of property was damaged thanks to 2005's Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana.

Over 654,965 Iraqi civilians died due to the effects of warfare by 2006.

Over 4,400 American soldiers died while 30-100,000 were wounded in Iraq.

Over 700,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans are expected to suffer from PTSD, according to a recent Stanford University Study.

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Over 1,100 Americans soldiers have died in Afghanistan thus far, while civilian war related deaths range from 13-33,000.

Over 300,000 Haitians died and over a million were left homeless after their earthquake in 2010.

Over ?____? barrels of blown oil (enter some horrendously large number, which maybe BP knows) is destroying a once thriving fishing and tourist industry, let alone a chunk of several eco-systems.

Over 15% of Americans are unemployed or underemployed, while the poorest of our richest 400 financial gimmickers and tax law influencers was paid $86.6 million, while he and the 399 above him averaged paying a perfectly legal effective tax rate of 15.3% in 2000.

If a disease or ignorance were causing this death and destruction, wouldn't it be practical to invest money in staving off or ending such?

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If we anticipate more death and destruction ahead, wouldn't it be proactive to enlarge the response teams that can deal with such?

If we had cost effective teams that reduced the need and desire to war, wouldn't it be smart to expand them?

If we had programs that cost-effectively put Americans to work for a year or two while doing good and growing smarter in the process, shouldn't we invest immediately in them?

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Dwayne served in the Peace Corps in the slums of Mumbai, India, worked several Habitat Projects, and was on the start-up team of the California Conservation Corps. He has a Ph.D. from Claremont Graduate University, has been a builder, teacher, (more...)

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When you make lots of friends early doing simple g... by Dwayne Hunn on Monday, May 31, 2010 at 10:20:28 PM
Practicality is a relative value, with 10s of thou... by Donald on Tuesday, Jun 1, 2010 at 10:48:05 AM