In the article http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8110093.stm, the BBC reported that ‘Life for most of North Korean’s 23 million people is harsh. North Korea’s economy went into steep decline during the 1990s after the collapse of communism elsewhere. Though the economy has recovered to an extent, thanks to greater co-operation with South Korea and some small-scale market reforms, living standards and output remain far below the levels of the 1990s. Another factor that holds back the economy is the significant share of GDP that is spent on the military.‘
Conversely, the United states government accounts for 47% of the entire world’s spending on the military, even though it only shares in about 21% of the world’s GDP.
While millions of Americans can’t even afford to buy food (so much so, that in excess of 40 million Americans actually go hungry on a weekly basis, struggling to feed their large appetites on meagre rations handed out to those lucky enough to have any government assistance) and can’t even afford education, health care or a plane ticket out to explore the other countries in the world they own, finding articles and stories often mentioning that the world’s number 1 superpower – which enjoys giant media control, while standing on its own self-manufactured pedestal of democracy (probably constructed with cheap outsourced labour, human life and blood and no inherited pollution or waste costs of their own) – is ‘spending too much of its GDP on the military’ is always going to be much more of a challenge than finding an article that highlights the apparently inconsiderate, irresponsible behaviour of an entity threatening the world’s status-quo – like the communist North Korea… After all, America is the status quo.
It is also interesting to note how the report mentions ‘the (North Korean) economy has recovered to an extent, thanks to greater co-operation with South Korea and some small-scale market reforms’ – no doubt referring to a ‘market reform’ away from the North Korean state-controlled communist model, and closer alignment with the capitalist consumer model that helped the elite construct an even larger divide between them and the rest, (starting just up the road from glorious Windsor castle in the UK, where a humble sign marks the founding of ‘the birthplace of modern democracy’ ) leaving the poor squabbling over the scraps left in every country where this dated economic paradigm has enjoyed its reign.
This is the system that got Americans, Australians and the English morbidly obese – that is surely fattening up Indians, Chinese, Brazilians, Mexicans, Russians, Thais, Singaporeans, Filipinos, Saudis and millions of others as we speak – as they too blindly aim to emulate the capitalist model that has proved so ‘successful’ (wherever its poisoned tendrils can control what you know). It is the same system that causes a lust for economy driving growth through the purchase of weapons and the engagement in conflict (spreading a disease-like lust for weapons, protection and fear). The same system that insists economies expand, at the peril of our mother nature and the only home our race currently knows (ensuring a bleak future for generations to come). The same system that further and further disengages us from reality, love and each other, opting instead for money-garnering technological advances, convenience and the proliferation of laziness.
It is the same system that caused our appetites for anything consumable to reach its insatiable size, and we continue to wonder why we’re all so painfully hungry.
The United States world police
The current situation just off the South Korean coast, and too near the North Korean demarcation line is a perilous one (even without mentioning the nuclear weapons which the US, North Korea and its ally China, posses). We can only hope that the US doesn’t deem it necessary to weild its power once more, though we can only expect them to do whatever they want.