The world's developed countries must challenge many old assumptions and think in new ways. We must ask ourselves: What constitutes an effective defense? Preparation for war is unfortunately necessary, but eliminating the root causes of tension must be addressed aggressively on a scale never before seen in the human history.
The hopelessness and despair often found in people that live in extreme poverty is a contributing factor in much of the societal instability we see in the world today. It does not have to be this way. We can become the generation that will be remembered for setting in motion forces that redefine who we are and where we stand. Our shared goal is peace.
A Peace Superfund can be assembled by redirecting fractions of the defense budgets of developed nations to concentrate on providing hope to the profoundly poor of our world. The United States alone currently spends more than $1,500,000,000,000. (one and a half trillion dollars) on defense every two years. Most national defense budgets contain redundancy and waste. By aggressively identifying inefficiencies and directing a portion of the savings to a new Peace Superfund, we could begin to move forward with our goals.
Similar to Marshall Plan in focus, The Peace Superfund would provide a wider path to basic self-sufficiency by providing resources for the many proven programs that lay the foundation for people to find their way out of poverty.
As we begin to meet the needs of the world's poor, new and innovative education initiatives would be implemented with the goal of eliminating illiteracy worldwide.
In addition, a web based information exchange promoting idea sharing and providing news about the International Peace Star Project would be developed. All of these elements would be supported by our best minds, working together, promoting stability through self-sufficiency.
We can create a world where everyone has a chance, unlocking immense human potential while advancing the cause of peace throughout the world.
Standing Up and Telling Our Story
As our plans unfold, an unparalleled global effort would be initiated to encourage democratic ideals, free market principles and environmental awareness by utilizing a wide range of media resources and innovative educational programs.
This effort would include programs that enable people to participate in the free market system. Micro-loan banking, for example, provides low interest seed capital allowing individuals to start small business enterprises.
Extremely successful models exist today and can be expanded to reach many more people. Other off the shelf programs encourage people to work hard to improve their lives.
These proven ideas properly capitalized and managed can provide a path from grinding poverty to opportunity and hope.
This brief outline is only one vision. Naturally, this vision will evolve and broaden with the involvement of all people working together for a shared dream.
Refugees in Bosnian refugee camp pause for a feast sponsored by
Bright Light, photo by and Copr. © Bob Hiner.
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