The Importance of Being an Egoist
The cost of violence is the measure of how far the humanity has walked on the road to civilization. The best metrics for that are designed, among other important things, in the Sydney based Institute for Economics and Peace, headed by its Founder and Executive Chairman Steve Killelea.
In The Economic Cost of Violence Containment report for 2015 you can see that the cost of violence in the last year amounted to US$14.3 trillion, equal to 13.4 percent of Gross World Product. Comparing the figures with the previous year – US$9.46 trillion wasted because of violence, which represented 11% of Gross World Product, you cannot avoid the conclusion that we are moving backwards. Which clearly shows one of the absurdities of our political systems in the 21st century.
Studying and measuring complex processes like peace and violence requires the input of quantifiable components, and objectivity criteria limit the research scope to figures, associated with Military expenditure, Internal security, Private security, Internal conflict, GDP losses from conflict, Terrorism, UN Peacekeeping, etc. In reality, however, the direct and indirect negative impact of violence on human civilization is much graver. For at least three reasons:
FIRST, currently a huge number of operational edge technologies are classified and applied exclusively for military purposes. It is extremely difficult to imagine how our world would look like today, if all the science and technology achievements of human thinking were unrestrictedly used by any company and all the products were accessible on the free market. It could be the equivalent of a time slip of at least twenty years into the future. With the bonus of all the economic and social consequences included.
SECOND, all military, security and special services structures, and of course, in the shadow part of our world, – the terrorist and mafia organisations, tend to recruit the best experts in many important areas. These people, gifted with extraordinary capabilities are in reality sadly deprived of their natural opportunity to work for the advance of humanity. The product of what they are doing every day would not immediately make our life better. And very often, it might be exactly the opposite.
AND THIRD, do you recognize the kids on the pictures below?
You might have guessed: Mozart, Marie Curie, and Picasso. On the forth photo is one of the two million children killed in war conflicts within a decade. We shall never know who would this girl evolve into.
Like most people, I like music and art, and I enjoy the everyday life with my car, computer and TV. All those things materialize in themselves the masterpieces, inventions and discoveries of thousands of bright minds who created them at different points of time in human history. And I am not comfortable with the knowledge about Archimedes being killed by a soldier, Giordano Bruno burned at the stake, or Evariste Galois shot in a duel.
Violence, in whatever form, is not a natural phenomenon. It is initiated and executed by people, people who have names. And if these people directly or indirectly destroy values that are important to you and me, why should we tolerate them? Or why should we elect some of them into positions that enable their sick egos to realize through committing violence?
It is the things we love that make us a real humans.
Fight for the things you love!