Conservatives are supposed to be all about being responsible, and all about not having Big Government tell us what to do. And yet, we invest ridiculous amounts of money to fight their many War-on’s. And really, to what end? Do we have less drug use? Do we have less terrorism? No. What we have less of is money, civil liberties, privacy, and faith in our system. Call me crazy, but that doesn’t seem like responsible spending.
What got me thinking about this was an article on The Zingularity this morning (Terrorism by the numbers) and the actual odds that we are facing in the War On Terror. We are spending a ridiculous quantity of money to ensure that a highly unlikely event (like less than winning the lottery odds) doesn’t happen. From the brutal and ugly truth of macroeconomics, this is utterly unproductive and worthless, yet it is the fiscally responsible right wing who want to keep shelling out for it.
To me, the much greater cost has been to Western civil liberties. Canada is, I believe, a little less insane than our neighbors to the south, but we’re not where we were, nor where we ought to be. The fact is, a lot of people support this invasion of our lives, freedoms, and happiness to make sure we aren’t the targets of terrorists, but the threat just isn’t there. If someone told you that, for a trillion dollars and a series of reductions to our freedoms, they could guarantee that the odds of winning the lottery went up by .0000001%, would they agree? I strongly doubt it.
And then there is the War On Drugs. If ever there was a war that we have lost before we even started, it’s this one. Arresting poor people for selling drugs gets drugs off the streets about as well as telling your kids not to sneak cookies does. What it does do is build and fill prisons, spend an inordinate amount on law enforcement, ruin lives, ruin families, and shackle poor people, all brought to you by the smart spending, family values oriented right wing. Our kids are still doing drugs. People are still overdosing. The threat of incarcertaion does not dissuade people.
The only War-on that’s working is the War On Christmas, and that’s a baby-eating Liberal war.
So why are we wasting the money? Why are we consistently voting for people who think it’s a good idea to bankrupt our governments and drive up the cost of living while subsequently undermining us at every step? That’s not Conservativism, it’s just plain bad leadership.