Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Is It Just Me?
Is it just me, or could there be something better that we could be doing with our time? Take a look at missile submarine. On the one hand, here is a technological marvel. It can stay submerged for essentially as long as it wants to – the limiting factor is the crew – speed along a pretty fast clip, launch missiles from half way around the world, etc. This vehicle represents decades of development on the parts of thousands of people. On the other hand, a sub like this is insanity incarnate: this is a weapon that if used will kill millions of people and cause the target country to descend into a state of anarchy. These vehicles are hideously expensive. The costs for crew, fuel, support systems, etc. should easily be over a billion dollars a year. Now consider that there are entire fleets of subs like this that a country like the USA maintains. We live in a world where the time, effort and resources could be better spent. Instead of creating weapons to destroy somebody, we could eliminate poverty in this country or at least take a damn good chunk out of it. Research into energy technologies could result in cleaner fuels, or perhaps waste free production. Work in medical technologies could produce cures for diseases that continue to plague the world. There are many, many things that could be done with the time and effort put into supporting a bunch of weapons. The state of the world being what it is, things like missile subs are necessary. There are some pretty crazy people who've been running countries in the past 100 years. People like Kim Jong-ill, Pol Pot and Joseph Stalin. These are people so crazy that it takes a threat of total annihilation to restrain them. But that's just the point: why is it that we have nut-cases like that running countries in the first place? People always have a choice – the generals, soldiers and people do not have to follow orders. People have free will; they can decide not do crazy stuff. So why do we do it? Tags: submarines, insanity, resources, rants. Sources: I got the image of the sub from http://www.navsource.org but, for some reason, it wont let me create a link.