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Debate: Converting to a global peace economy

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====Pro==== ====Pro====
-'''[[Argument:Yields from organic farming can be as high as from industrial-chemical agriculture.|Yields from organic farming can be as high as from industrial-chemical agriculture.]]''' Christos Vasilikiotis wrote an overview of research supporting that conclusion in an article titled, "Can Organic Farming 'Feed the World'?"[http://www.cnr.berkeley.edu/~christos/articles/cv_organic_farming.html] +'''[[Argument:Yields from organic farming can be as high as from industrial-chemical agriculture.|Yields from organic farming can be as high as from industrial-chemical agriculture.]]''' Yields are important even though a major problem frequently facing farmers has been overproduction. The problem of hunger has mainly been the result of a maldistribution of wealth and power.
'''Organic farming protects crops from drought.''' Compost, or humus, has exceptional water holding capacity, and organic farming practices increase the humus content in soil.[http://www.organicgardeninfo.com/compost-benefits.html] '''Organic farming protects crops from drought.''' Compost, or humus, has exceptional water holding capacity, and organic farming practices increase the humus content in soil.[http://www.organicgardeninfo.com/compost-benefits.html]

Revision as of 02:09, 1 March 2011

Would we be more secure if military expenditures were replaced with better management of our planet's resources?


Background and Context of Debate:

Global military expenditures in 2009 exceeded $1.5 trillion.[1] Better management could include and not be limited to: supporting farmers in converting from industrial-chemical agriculture to organic farming; developing clean, renewable forms of energy; extending Internet access to all citizens of planet Earth. This debate takes place in the context of the human population growing to about 7 billion people by April of 2012, which is also when close to 3.5 billion people will have access to the Internet.[2] Half of a population is frequently considered to be a quorum. It is unlikely that the United States, which accounted for $661 billion in military expenditures in 2009 by itself,[3] would approve a plan for demilitarization unilaterally. A global referendum could take place in April of 2012 that would demonstrate that it is the will of the people worldwide to convert to a peace economy. Some of the questions to be considered in this debate include: Are there better measures of national security than military might? Would transitioning from industrial-chemical agriculture to organic farming improve our security? Would developing clean, renewable energy supplies improve our security? Such questions and the pro and con arguments are presented below.

Are there better measures of national security than military might?

Pro

  • Food insecurty is a main reason for popular uprisings taking place in a number of countries in early 2011. The global food price index rose to a record high in January of 2011.[4] Lester Brown, of the Earth Policy Institute, pointed out in February of 2011 that the world is one poor harvest away from chaos. [5]
  • Military forces, as in Libya in early 2011, are sometimes used to suppress popular uprisings. The International Criminal Court prosecutor stated that the use of military forces in Libya could be a crime against humanity.[6] The bloodiest war fought in the history of the United States was its own Civil War.[7] Who is the enemy if we are all citizens of planet Earth?
  • Military forces are poor protection against terrorists. The September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon was carried out by 19 terrorists who were armed with knives and box cutters.[8]
  • The United States military offers poor protection if China, for example, would get better value by buying key assets of the United States than by invading it. Chinese holdings of US bonds by the end of 2010 were $1.16 trillion.[9] The value of all crops grown in the United States in 2009 was $157.5 billion.[10]




Con

  • United States military might allows the US to protect its national interests worldwide. As of 2007, the United States had military bases in 63 countries, with military personnel stationed in 156 countries.[11]





Would transitioning from industrial-chemical agriculture to organic farming improve our security?

Pro

Yields from organic farming can be as high as from industrial-chemical agriculture. Yields are important even though a major problem frequently facing farmers has been overproduction. The problem of hunger has mainly been the result of a maldistribution of wealth and power.

Organic farming protects crops from drought. Compost, or humus, has exceptional water holding capacity, and organic farming practices increase the humus content in soil.[12]

Organic farming takes CO2 out of the atmosphere, and sequesters it in the soil. Converting all of the world's croplands to organic farming could sequester billions of tons of CO2 per year, at the same time that it would avoid billions of tons of annual CO2 emissions from the much more fossil-fuel intensive industrial-chemical agriculture.[13]




Con

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Would developing clean, renewable energy supplies improve our security?

Pro

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Con

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Would extending Internet access to the entire human population improve our security?

Pro

Con

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