For Department of Defense, taxpayers in Essex County, New Jersey are paying $2.07 billion, taxpayers in the entire state of New York are paying $46.28 billion, these totals do not include the cost of war.
Cycle tracks (protected state of the art bike lanes) across the entire state of New York would cost $810 million, in Essex County, New Jersey it would cost $65 million. This would be a one-time cost, unlike what we pay for the Department of the Defense, which we pay annually and doesn’t include the cost of war.
If we had bike lanes people would be healthier. The environment would be cleaner and fewer people would die in the United States and overseas, because our priorities would be different.
Maybe we would brag about our children being happy instead of bragging about being the best and most bad assed country in the world. Maybe we would stop bragging and just do things like provide people with universal child care and universal health care and free college tuition and free rent.
Maybe we wouldn’t have decide between killing this guy or killing that guy, because we would not have the money to kill this guy or that guy, so it would make it unappealing for people who like getting paid when they murder people.
Syria can not be controlled with force. No one can be controlled by force. What our “helping” in the past has done in places like Iraq and Libya was simply replace a secular authoritarian government with a theocratic authoritarian government, authoritarian, is authoritarian regardless of the flavor (though secular governments historically seem to have a greater chance to evolve into republics than a theocratic e.g. Eastern Europe.)
How we get around is the reason that authoritarian governments can thrive in the Middle East. It doesn’t take many people to poke a hole in the ground and get oil, so you don’t have to share the money, you can keep it all to yourself. If you don’t have to share the money then a few people can be rich and awful.
If we want to stop oppression in the Middle East then we need to work on building infrastructures that support transportation that does not depend on oil.
Assad is not a good person, but us bombing Syria is not going to do anything, but make it worse, so let us move all that money away from murdering people and change how we do things.
Change how we spend our money.
Change how we we deal with conflict.
Change not only the way we get to where we are going, but change the path of how we get there.
Bicycles, not bombs.
by Teka-Lark Lo