Spend money on technology, not war | TheUnion.com

Spend money on technology, not war

Conventional thinking has us building a massive bureaucracy and an international police state to combat terrorism. Conquering Iraq will likely lead to a series of intensive, long guerrilla wars and occupations. We may benefit from the continued supply of inexpensive oil, but not before we sacrifice trillions of dollars, countless lives, and personal freedom in the “war on terrorism.”

Wouldn’t it be a better investment if our “war on terrorism” money was spent on development of promising technologies such as fuel cells, space-based research and the next generation of high-speed internet? Within a few years we would see tangible results and an economic boom as we race pass competitors like China, Japan and the EU. Freed from our dependence on oil, we could eliminate financial backing of terrorism and allow citizens of the oil states to decide their own fates, without our presence to inflame terrorist acts.

Alternative energy and accelerated research and development efforts are not hippy-dippy, pie in the sky ideas. We won World War II by developing the atom bomb with just such a crash program. The Defense Department’s development of computer technology led to the largest economic boom (and human advancement) in history. Our current “war on terrorism” could use a similar type of R&D effort as its most important strategic weapon.

Secure our borders and implement defensive security measures. But spend the bulk of our money here, on projects that will make our country more prosperous, strong and secure for generations to come. And relish the thought of Saddam Hussein and the Saudi sheiks trading their Mercedes for camels.

Warren Pfahl

Nevada City

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