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War, what is it good for?

By Richard O’Brien

With all due deference to Edwin Starr . . . 2, 3, 4

War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Uh-huh
War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again, y’all
War, huh, good God
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

War, armed homicides, extra-judicial executions and excessive use of force by state security forces amount to over 500,000 per year or 1,500 per day . . .

I said, war, huh
Good God, y’all
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again
War, whoa, Lord
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

. . . and while it’s difficult to estimate exactly how many people are injured in armed conflict, past statistics indicate that as many as 28 people are seriously injured for every person killed.

Aaaaah, war-huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it, say it, say it
War, huh
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

An estimated 12-14 billion bullets are produced every year. That’s almost enough to shoot every person on the planet, twice. There are an estimated 900 million guns in the world right now, and about 8 million ‘light weapons’ (such as heavy machine guns) are produced each year.

War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Uh-huh
War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again y’all
War, huh, good God
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

War is responsible for almost all of the 60 million forcibly displaced people worldwide, the highest level since WW2. It’s also responsible for the overwhelming majority of the world’s poverty, deaths from disease (due to the destruction of infrastructure) and the rape and sexual abuse of women and girls. According to UNICEF starvation alone kills over 20,000 people each day, most of them (90%) children under the age of 5.

Ooooh, war, huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again
War, whoa, Lord
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

There are more international laws regulating the trade of bananas than weapons.

Ooooooh, war, huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
You tell me

Total global military expenditure was $US1.711 trillion in 2014, that’s a 50% increase since 9/11. In the Middle East military expenditure has increased in that time by 75%. More than three-quarters of world’s weapons come from 6 countries: the USA (31%), Russia (27%), China (5%), Germany (5%), France (5%) and the UK (4%). Apart from Germany, all of those countries make up the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council. Do you want to know what we could buy if we took just one fifth of that $1.711 trillion away?

Say it, say it, say it, say it

Scientists estimate that conserving 20-30% of our oceans would cost between $5 billion and $19 billion a year. That would create about a million new jobs, a sustainable fish catch worth $70-80 billion a year and further ecosystem services worth a gross value of $4.5-6.7 trillion a year.

The global economy is losing between $2 trillion and $5 trillion each year due to deforestation. The cost of halving deforestation is estimated at $15 billion a year.
Ending our dependence on fossil fuels and nuclear power would require additional annual investments of around $280 billion. In addition to the environmental benefits, that investment would more than pay off in the form of saved fuel costs, additional jobs created and removing our dependence on fossil fuels, which is the primary cause of . . .

War, huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
Stand up and shout it
Nothing!

 

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4 comments

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  1. donwreford

    The article is monumental? parallel to this shows how stupid the politicians that rule us and how stupid we all are in allowing the finance industry to rule over us, what is wrong with the human race? from my experience if you are not part of the rat race in so far as being egotistical, bombastic and competitive and so on you will attract the depraved the corrupt or the stupid you cannot have a intelligent conversation with any one you have to speak in cliches? you must not talk real or you will be known for a social leper? put this on a mega scale is ti surprising that we are lost led by the lost?

  2. kathysutherland2013

    Love this! Not subtle, but subtlety would be wasted on those would drag us into war.

  3. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    Where is “Frankie Goes to Hollywood” and a huge budget for a film clip when the world needs one ?
    ….I listened to the Edwin Starr version the other day too. I was actually looking for a different song that goes…
    “We don’t want no war
    We don’t want no war
    We don’t want all that fighting
    We don’t want all that figthing
    …etc”
    It was by black musicians with chorused vocals although a female lead was most dominant. I used to have it on a compilation tape I made some time which meant it was probably on a record or other tape I had. I can’t find it now (or on the internet). It had a kind of Parliament or Funkadelic sound if anyone could help….(?)

    Here’s Edwin…the best of course.

  4. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    I remembered some more helpful lyrics than those ones (which is possibly the chorus).

    “Hey Mr Bush,
    give yourself a push.
    Push for peace.
    The….(something blah rhymes with peace etc)”

    There are so many anti-war songs…..this one may have been called something to do with a letter to the President….but there are quite a few with that subject. It’s not the first song I haven’t been able to find on the internet.

    There is a fairly massive list of links to anti-war songs here. http://www.neilyoung.com/lwwtoday/lwwsongspage.html
    I guess that shows the power of art…. : P

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