Standing armies consist of professional soldiers who owe their livelihood and income to the government. Unlike civilians who render periodic service in local militia, professional soldiers do not own property and therefore do not have any source of income other than the government’s military paymaster. Thus, they are more likely to serve the government’s interests, regardless of whether its leaders are dishonest and corrupt or not. In fact, standing armies may even promote rapacious foreign or domestic policies if such policies enrich the army. In contrast, arms bearing, property owning citizen militiamen have a stake in the health of the republic as a whole and can be trusted to act in the republic’s best interests, whether those interests call for action in support of or against the political leadership of the nation.more Anthony J. Dennis quotes
[W]e have to realize that the real problem is that the American people have been too submissive. We have been too submissive. It has been going on for a long time. ... [T]he bill that I have introduced ... is very simple. It is one paragraph long. It removes the immunity from anybody in the Federal government that does anything that you or I can't do.
If you can't grope another person and if you can't X-ray people and endanger them with possible X-rays, [and] you can't take nude photographs of individuals, why do we allow the government to do it? We would go to jail. He would be immediately arrested, if an individual citizen went up and did these things, and yet we just sit there and calmly say, 'oh, they are making us safe.' And besides, the argument from the executive branch is that when you buy a ticket, you have sacrificed your rights and it is the duty of the government to make us safe.
That isn't the case. You never have to sacrifice your rights. The duty of the government is to protect our rights, not to use them and do what they have been doing to us.more Dr. Ron Paul quotes
We have a lot of goodness in this country. And we should promote it, but never through the barrel of a gun. We should do it by setting good standards, motivating people and have them want to emulate us. But you can't enforce our goodness, like the neocons preach, with an armed force. It doesn't work.more Dr. Ron Paul quotes
Let us be frank: provoking military-political instability and other regional conflicts is also a convenient way of deflecting people’s attention from mounting social and economic problems. Regrettably, further attempts of this kind cannot be ruled out.more Vladimir Putin quotes
The more power a government has, the more it can act arbitrarily
according to the whims and desires of the elite and murder its foreign and domestic subjects. The more constrained the power of governments, the more power is diffused, checked and balanced, the less it will aggress on others and commit democide. ... In total, during the first eighty-eight years of this century, almost 170 million men, women, and children have been shot, beaten, tortured, knifed, burned, starved, frozen, crushed, or worked to death; buried alive, drowned, hung, bombed, or killed in any other of the myriad ways governments have inflicted death on unarmed, helpless citizens and foreigners. The dead could conceivably be nearly 360 million people. It is as though our species has been devastated by a modern Black Plague. And indeed it has, but a plague of Power, not of germs.more Rudolf J. Rummel quotes
GDP is an important metric for determining how much the United States could afford to spend on defense, but it provides no insight into how much the United States should spend. Defense planning is a matter of matching limited resources to achieve carefully scrutinized and prioritized objectives. When there are more threats, a nation spends more. When there are fewer threats, it spends less. As threats evolve, funding should evolve along with them. ... Unfortunately, setting defense spending at four percent of GDP would shield the Pentagon from careful scrutiny and curtail a much-needed transparent national debate.more Travis Sharp quotes
The great foe of democracy now and in the near future is plutocracy. Every year that passes brings out this antagonism more distinctly. It is to be the social war of the twentieth century. In that war militarism, expansion and imperialism will all favor plutocracy. In the first place, war and expansion will favor jobbery, both in the dependencies and at home. In the second place, they will take away the attention of the people from what the plutocrats are doing. In the third place, they will cause large expenditures of the people’s money, the return for which will not go into the treasury, but into the hands of a few schemers. In the fourth place, they will call for a large public debt and taxes, and these things especially tend to make men unequal, because any social burdens bear more heavily on the weak than on the strong, and so make the weak weaker and the strong stronger. Therefore expansion and imperialism are a grand onslaught on democracy.more William Graham Sumner quotes
Everywhere you go on the continent of Europe at this hour you see the conflict between militarism and industrialism. You see the expansion of industrial power pushed forward by the energy, hope, and thrift of men, and you see the development arrested, diverted, crippled, and defeated by measures which are dictated by military considerations.more William Graham Sumner quotes
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