Ok, I'm going to set up my argument with a few statistics I found through google searches. If you can give better or disputing evidence please do.
In the United States in 2003 there were 2.3 million people directly employed as members of the military by the Department of Defense. In the same year more than 600,000 civilians were employed directly by the DOD. Add to this all the employees of the 41 private domestic munitions companies with DOD contracts, and you just start to scratch the surface of all the people who make their living from violent death and dismemberment.If world peace were to actually happen I would venture to argue that nearly half of all workers in the US would be unemployed.
But wait, we're just getting started!
There are nearly 700,000 people employed by the tabacco industry. Tabacco accounts for approximately 20% of all cancer-related deaths. The average yearly income of an MD specializing in radio-oncology is above $600k.
And don't even get me started on health insurance and their employees.
Let's not forget there are more than 2 million people in prisons in the US. The prison industry has become largly privatized in the last 20 years, employing alot of people (can't find a stat yet). Crime related expensess account for an estimated 7 percent of the total US ecomomy. One third of all prisoners are there for drug related offenses.
These are just a few examples of a bigger idea.
So now when you take these facts (look up your own if you don't trust mine) into consideration, it becomes clear that death is our livelihood. More so in the US than anywhere else, our own self destruction is the only thing keeping us afloat. We are a nation of canibals, and the least squeamish among us are the most succesfull.
So when you yearn for the end of the Iraq occupation, remember that a withdrawl would likely mean the bankruptcy of thousands of American families. When you lobby for smoking bans you cost doctors thier McMansions with every set of lungs saved. When you work for fair drug policy that does not single out minorities you are destroying the economic base of hundreds of small towns once employed by manufacturing but now tied directly to private mega prisons.
The question is not how did we get here. The question is how do we change it?