Local economy stretches forth upraised palm: ‘Please, no war’

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Once again, the Americans are planning a foreign military adventure in the name of national security.

Once again, the Americans are planning a foreign military adventure in the name of national security.

The localist and freedom-minded person in a given locale favors sustainable local economy where people in the marketplace are free to serve other people — the consumer — and earn a profit. A primary resource for survival of our hometown is local economy. Implied in that plain-wrapper statement about longevity of a city is that profit is earned by owners who live in the city. Local economy quietly desires for itself, and people far away, liberty of movement and nonintereference by the state.

The nationalist operates on the use of destabilizing and interventionist force. He does it domestically, and internationally. War, for example, is the federal government’s business and primary purpose. War is in international jurisdiction in which Washington operates and has authority to bomb enemies outside the 50 states

Free markets vs. warfare state

The famous 1918 essay “The State,” by Randolph Bourne tells about the idea of the nation state and how it is connected with warmaking. Local economy and free markets represent everything that the state is not. They represent the freedom to earn, explore, the power of cooperation, service, innovation, liberty and capital reserves. The modern state “represents all the autocratic, arbitrary, coercive, belligerent forces within a social group, it is a sort of complexus of everything most distasteful to the modern free creative spirit, the feeling for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. War is the health of the State. Only when the State is at war does the modern society function with that unity of sentiment, simple uncritical patriotic devotion, cooperation of services, which have always been the ideal of the State lover.”

War shocks people into acceptance of the state which otherwise they might look upon with hostility and resentment. War “is the reason given for high taxes, internal revenue bureaucracies,” says Tom DiLorenzo, the free market economist and historian, “pervasive spying, censorship, military conscription, the abolition of civil liberties, heavy debt, an explosive growth of government spending and borrowing, extensive excise taxation, nationalization of industries, socialist central planning, massive public indoctrination campaigns, the punishment and imprisonment of dissenters to the state’s rule, the shooting of deserters from its armies, the conquest of other countries, inflation of the currency, demonization of private enterprise and the civil society for being insufficiently ‘patriotic,’ the growth of a military/industrial complex, a vast expansion of governmental pork barrel spending, the demonization of the ideas of freedom and individualism and those who espouse them, and a never-ending celebration, if not deification, of statism and militarism.”

Dr. DiLorenzo’s essay recounts how the federal government has lied its way into numerous wars — the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, the “American ‘civil war,’” the Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II and the Vietnam war. I suggest you click the link at bottom and read his piece.

Right now the government is figuring out how to attack Syria over the gas attack that killed hundreds of civilians, one blamed on the Assad government. In a brief essay that proposes eight goals of a war in Syria, former finance professor Michael S. Rozeff says the U.S. role evinces “the ideology of ‘liberalism,’ which arose as classical liberalism faded out and was replaced by its opposite[,] nationalism, expansionism and progressivism.” I cite Dr. Rozeff because classical liberalism is a fruit of the Reformation as recounted by Max Weber and The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (1920).

We cannot change anything by worrying

The difference between you and the national economy and its two political parties is that by dint of geography, space and physical reality you are removed from the machinations for war in Washington, and its actual delivery across the ocean in Syria. Washington is remote from Chattanooga, and from your hometown.

Local economy and free market are twin concepts of wealth that let you forget about Washington — almost. We can’t totally because the interventions in Syria are of the same cloth as interventions against local economy. For both, you have to pay, and you are supposed to applaud. Washington destabilizes local business, local families. Think briefly of Obamacare, an old-world solution centralizing a diverse marketplace of health insurance and forcing the American people into a narrow government-controlled sector.

A “left-leaning social activist” speaker Wednesday at a small-business group in Chattanooga tells how he had been an Obamacare supporter. But Link Christensen became horrified at its results, its rising costs and the threat it brings to free markets by way of granting potential litigants “whistleblower” status. The headline of the story suggests what commonly happens when people frame their ideas in terms of familiar categories such as Democrat and Republican. “Obamacare turns a liberal to the right.” The right refers to conservatism and Republican politics. Rather than seeing Republicans gain muscle from the Obamacare disaster, I would like to read, “Obamacare turns a liberal to local economy.” The solutions to politic and interventionism is not more politics, but a demilitarized and decentralized social order

Sources: Dave Flessner and Ellis Smith, “Obamacare turns a liberal to the right,” Aug. 29, 2013, Chattanooga Times Free Press

Tom DeLorenzo, “The Liefare-Warfare State,” Aug. 29, 2013, Lewrockwell.com

Randolph Bourne, “War is the health of the state.” Cited by Tom DiLorenzo. Bourne was a leftist. The Randolph Bourne Institute promotes his perspective at antiwar.com

Michael Rozeff, “Why Is the U.S. Destabilizing One Country After Another?,” Aug. 29, 2013, Lewrockwell.com

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (New York: Oxford University Press, trans. Stephen Kalberg, 2011, 1920), 442 pp

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