[extropy-chat] War Is Easy To Explain - Peace is Not

Thomas Thomas at thomasoliver.net
Fri Mar 16 07:41:37 UTC 2007

Brent Neal wrote:

>There is a case to be made that we've  
>found that the most cost-effective way to engage in warfare now is  
>economic, not militarily. Case in point is the Cold War, which was  
>not won by guns, but rather by forcing/tricking the Soviets into  
>breaking their economy. I've seen reasonable arguments that the trade/ 
>currency imbalance between the US and China is such a conflict.  From  
>the aforementioned game-theory standpoint, economic war makes sense  
>for the modern world, because it maximizes the return on investment.
Brent, I think Neal Stephenson might agree with you.  In "Diamond Age" 
the administration of justice gets carried out on solely economic 
considerations.  Politics appears reduced to tribal style preferences 
and the magnitude of a crime gets judged on economy-wide consequences.   
Unproductive behavior coupled with habitual counterproductive actions 
gets judged worthy of a death sentence.

 From this view (economic stats trumping political concerns) I think one 
could say that waging political war might be considered a kind of 
declaration of bankruptcy.

So now do we see peace and wealth as positive correlates -- and, 
conversely, war and political power? -- Thomas

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