Contempt of Conscience

Ratings: 9.00/10 from 3 users.

Contempt of ConscienceContempt of Conscience is a project started by Joe Jenkins before he joined the Peace Tax Seven and the ongoing campaign for a judicial review has become a major part of it.

In early 2003, at a US air force base in England as B-52's bombers prepare to bomb Iraq, a Welsh Weapons Inspector is stopped and searched under the Prevention of Terrorism Act.

In recalling the words of a Secretary of State at another massive anti war demonstration: Let them march all they want as long as they continue to pay their taxes, the Inspector hangs up his de-contamination outfit and dons a suit to take on the Inland Revenue.

He refuses to pay his income tax arguing that compelling taxpayers to pay for acts of deliberate killing they profoundly disagree with, is a violation of the law.

As a campaign grows to change the law there is vehement opposition as the State insists that a peace tax would set a dangerous precedent.

Too often war is associated with deaths and statistics and audiences miss out on some of the more subtle but complex issues associated with it. This film opens up these issues and creates new insights! - Head of Philosophy and Ethics, Sir William Perkins School.

Contempt of Conscience is a documentary about the formation, and goals of, a group of conscientious objectors called The Peace Tax Seven.

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62 Comments / User Reviews

  1. ranii02

    whats the update on the bill! anyone know?

  2. Gregor Duncan

    If we find, year after year, decade after decade that we elect people that we think will follow our wishes as citizens and our government still does just the opposite, then you have to conclude that our elected officials are either not in control or they don't care about our wishes. Then what is needed is a district by district accounting, by the people, as to how the people vote, what their wishes are and how the elected officials vote. With Liberty comes responsibility and if we do nothing, we will lose the ability to do anything. Be involved in district polls. keep an account of how your elected politicians vote. It doesn't matter what they say on the nightly news, but, it does matter how they vote. They act in our stead. we need to make them accountable.

  3. Singularity

    @Henry. A

    I have also considered all the ideas you have noted above. Other than the part about the psychic. There has been not a single bit of evidence that psychics are real. The only thing close was a recent study showing that there is a real possibility that our brain some how has the ability to see a few seconds into the future. (thats not exactly the best description of the study though).

    Anyway aside from psychics...

    There is alot of information on the internet on how to provide most and if not all of your own energy using solar panels, solar steam and wind energy. You do need some land but not as much as you would expect. You do need some money but also not as much as you would expect.

    I don't know if it is beneficial to stop working as it will only segregate you out of the current system and make it more difficult to show other people how you are living. I think it is more important to put certain measures in place like Energy, food and shelter and rather let the system destroy itself.

    I think this is a good place to start but i'm still learning.

  4. migrantworker

    We forget too easily that we have entrusted our leadership with the responsibility of knowing when and where it is important to show force... I'm not saying we should trust blindly, but I wonder at what point these Chamberlain-esq blokes would choose to defend themselves... probably right around the time when it comes down to the U.S., Canada, and Aussies to save their skin... again.

    1. Hodd

      Modern war has nothing to do with defending anything but profits in exploiting foreign oil.

  5. Cool E Beans

    @Anthony and Philosopher87. I have seen all of the Zeitgeist movies and the entire Century of the Self many times and they are about two different things.

    Think of it this way. You are in a casino playing blackjack. Century of the Self is an examination of the interaction between you and the dealer where you are the individual and the dealer is the manipulator using psychology in its many forms to influence you and your actions.

    Zeitgeist is trying to explain to you that even as you are playing blackjack with the dealer, it is the house who sets the rules that you are playing by and even though you are interacting with the dealer, even the dealer must play using the house rules. He who sets the rules wins the game and in our society, he who controls the money makes the rules and is trying to finish winning the game.

    War is a racket, and even those who wage war never fight in it. Governments go to war but it is its soldier-citizenry who does the fighting and the dieing. I would rather see the Presidents of each waring nation duke it out in a sanctioned sparing match instead of anyone killing or being killed over any percieved dispute. And as the banking system finances both sides anyway, as all banking must be connected world wide, they come out ahead financially no matter who wins or who dies.

  6. grey area

    humans for the most part go to war for fear. fear of resources running low, fear of money running low, fear of losing an ally if you dont go to war with them, fear of them warring with if you dont war with them first. empires the same and once you start war and 'conquering' then you cannot stop theyll kill you... really , just think about it, all war is out of fear when you get right down to it , whatever the 'reason' for any given war without a doubt like 95% of human wars were fear-based. now the strongest human emotions are love and fear and thers a thin red line seperating them. today fear is #1 , just turn on your t.v every 2nd show you see will try to scare the crap out of you , lets not forget the SAW franchise which is frekin ridiculous but has 7 or 8 sequels????? oh yah and how bout the threat level ? is it red yet? oh my god therr coming! wow this is what our society has come to ... blowing money on sick $hit like that...but hey humans are pretty f@#*ed up to begin with

  7. Epicurean_Logic

    Really enjoyed this!

    It is good to see these guys follow their beliefs in the certain knowledge that crushing defeat was coming their way. Even in the face of legal defeat they have won. The raising of awareness that war and murder of innocents is never ok is an amazing achievement.

    I have to also say kudos to the Quaker's. Hundreds of years of conscientious objection to war is really admirable. Hats off.

  8. Anthony


    I have watched them. And I chose my language carefully, the value that I did find in them was that the guy obviously sees that we have institutional systems that are failing us and I agree with that analysis. However I found his opinions somewhat idealistic and politically naive. Anyway each to his own as they say, I'd be interested to see what you have to say about Curtis's material.Perhaps you might find it to be equally unpalatable!

    That would be funny ;)

  9. Philosopher87


    I thought i would get someone dismissing it by simply calling it a name with negative connotations. I always find it amazing that people can't judge information without having to put it into specific group first.

    I would hope that you have watched all of the Zeitgeist movement documentaries before coming to your opinion that it is "cultist nonsense" and "misinformed jibberish". These opinions, too me, seem a little over simplied when applied to three very informative documentaries covering a large variety of subjects.

    I will watch the documentaries you have suggested though as i hope to learn more about on the subject of economics and politics.

  10. Anthony


    Zeitgeist is cultist nonsense.

    if you want to be "enlightened" and I use that term with regards to its real origin. Then I suggest that you watch Adam Curtis's documentary series; Starting with the century of the self. Then watch Padora's box then watch all of the rest...

    Curtis is in my opinion one of the very few "enlightened" documentary makers who has tried to give the public an impartial and informative history of the evolution of modern politics/economics and science. Most importantly he conveys to the viewer the various ideology's of our time from the perspective of those who upheld those ideology's and from both ends of the political spectrum.

    Do your self a big favour and disregard everything that you hear in the Zeitgeist. And see it for what it is: misinformed gibberish.

  11. Philosopher87

    Hi everyone,
    I dont really want to comment too much on the content of the docu because basically peoples opinions boil down to "war is justified" or "war is not justified". Personally i think killing for any reason is not justfied but seemingly inevitable in our current society.

    All i would like to say is to watch the docu Zeitgeist Moving Forward. Infact watch all three of the Zeitgeist Movie documentaries. They are probably the most enlightening documentary you can watch.

  12. Anthony

    The way I see life is very simple. As a man you can pick up a hammer or pick up a gun. Build something or destroy it(intellectually or physically, rocket science, brain surgery or craftsmanship its all the same, Productive constructive WORK!)That is the way it is for men and the way it always has been.

    The problem our generation may face is that by exporting misery to the rest of the globe so we can live in a illusionary state of self importance we are tying the knots in the rope of war, as Khrushchev said to Kennedy. And eventually there will come a point when we cannot undo them.

    For all you right wingers and naive teenagers who think war is a great idea because you get to drive a tank(I thought it once to.) then consider what Einstein had to say about war,

    "I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones."

    So make your choice because I assure you one day you must make a choice, unless you live on a desert island in the middle of an ocean (cudos to you if that's the case)

    So what's it to be? a hammer? a gun? or sticks and stones?

    Even Rod Stewart new this!

    So what becomes of you my love
    When they have finally stripped you of
    The handbags and the gladrags
    That your poor old Grandad had to sweat so you could buy....

    It aint complicated.

  13. Adam

    Actions speak louder than words my friends. It's really easy to write some angry post on forum, but it's much harder to put yourself at risk by taking action. We need to wake up and start taking moral responsibility for our action and words both direct and indirect. It's been proven over and over again through the history of democracy that real change requires enough people willing to die to make it happen. Don't kid yourself our time is no different.

  14. john

    i enjoy all this support the troops bull@hit...they can refuse to go...if they go and fight then they deserve their little wooden boxes.

  15. Spaghetti and Meatballs

    If you think fighting over the last remaining oil drops is bad, wait until the fighting is over fresh water and food, now that will be viscious.

  16. Toby

    I have not read all the comments, and dont want to right now becouse my shoulder is hurting.

    just one thought that no one seem to care about on the subject war or peace. the only real ''bad guy'' (except for religion)
    is nationality. everyone thinks(or at least in western country's) that becouse they are born on their side of the border (wich is man made and completely fictive) they are somehow better than the entire world and that their own beliefs are somehow the right ones.'

    break down the borders and war would be obsolete. sure there will still be plenty of fighting and violence. but large scale war would not be possible. or am i wrong?

  17. Intbel

    If we lived in democracy (we don't, never have) we, the people, would have a say as to what use our taxes are put.

    I don't mind my taxes going towards necessary defence.
    Unfortunately they are not going towards necesary defence but towards invasion in support of corporate interests and power-addicted psychopaths.

    It is noteable that during WWs 1&2 80% of casuluaties were combatants while today 80% are civilians.

    It is also noteable that WWs 1&2 were fought using conscripted combatants while today's combatants are all volunteers. (Except that many see military service as their only alternative to unemployment and how voluntary is that, really?)

    I will continue to support these folks who are (unlike our governments' alleged 'leaders') leading by example.

  18. Brian

    All I can say is that if you people read some philosophy you can have solved this problem hundreds of years ago lol. Humans are greedy, complacent consumers, but only because society is constructed so. In our culture being "more, better, faster" is best, Peace is when people can discuss solutions before killing each other as if it was a solution. Hume on subjectivism, Hobbes on State of Nature, Aristotle on the mediate means, these 3 all have answers, and none involve killing innocent people. The world is a stage and we're all actors, but some of us feel like the audience, remember, we're all actors and we all have a role to play...but who decides? There is no path to peace, PEACE IS THE PATH.

  19. Abrahams Son

    The question should be is war avoidable. Whether its necessary is a secondary question. I just dont see how you change the nature of man to give up individual desires for the good of all. John Lennon wrote a great song about this subject but in the end it was "Just Imagine" because we "as a group" never get beyond imagining it. Of course self interest has kept us from nuking the world so far so it has some benefits derived from fear not love. In the end I only can be responsible for my own actions, good, bad or indifferent.

  20. Cool E Beans

    I know that the American government collects taxes from individuals for two reasons. Site the 16th Ammendment.

    1) To provide for the common defense

    2) To pay the interest on the national debt

    As the war we are in is not in defense of our country (see all documentaries on 9/11), then all of the money is being spent to pay an interest payment. As Animadversion stated in comment 27, the government uses deficite spending for the war and the peoples taxes to pay the interest on that spending, but to whom?

    Watch all of the documentaries on money to know that it all goes to the reserve banking systems of each respective country and England has the first and biggest system of them all. War makes money for the bankers, the arms manufactures and the reconstruction companies.

    Read the tax code for your respective country. For England, only Lords and Ladies are the taxable individuals as the rest of you are serfs. This is why big earners such as Sir Paul McCartny and Sir Elton John were knighted as they had the clout to find out about it and refuse to pay but now they can't.

    For America, only those who are paid by the American government are required to pay taxes as a condition of their EMPLOYMENT as EMPLOYEES being paid WAGES. These capitalized words are specifically defined in the code...find them...learn what the code says. Everybody else uses the tax codes' 'voluntary compliance' feature even if they don't know that they are using it.

    Another cool feature is that even if you work for a company that contracts with the government and you earn less than half of your income from the government in a 31 day period, all of your income is called 'non-wages' for that period and is not taxable unless you volunteer it. There are eleven 31 day periods in a year excluding holidays and two weeks vacation. 31 x 11 = 341 + 14(vacation) = 355 + 10(holidays) = 365

    2011 Federal Holidays
    Federal law (5 U.S.C. 6103) establishes the following public holidays for Federal employees. Please note that most Federal employees work on a Monday through Friday schedule. For these employees, when a holiday falls on a nonworkday -- Saturday or Sunday -- the holiday usually is observed on Monday (if the holiday falls on Sunday) or Friday (if the holiday falls on Saturday).

    Friday, December 31, 2010* New Year’s Day
    Monday, January 17 Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
    Monday, February 21** Washington’s Birthday
    Monday, May 30 Memorial Day
    Monday, July 4 Independence Day
    Monday, September 5 Labor Day
    Monday, October 10 Columbus Day
    Friday, November 11 Veterans Day
    Thursday, November 24 Thanksgiving Day
    Monday, December 26*** Christmas Day

    My personal protest was to not work a day in 2008 and apply for a full and complete refund of taxes withheld in 2009 (including SS and Medicare as these apply only to taxable income and mine isn't). Still waiting for that refund.

  21. Anthony


    Actually this is a film about mature grown men with families.That wanted to redirect their tax money which is used to finance wars that they don't agree with to other activities that they believe are more constructive to society.

    Also remember this was made on the eve of the Iraq war when there was still a generally held belief in Britain that we lived in a modern forward thinking Democracy, before we where dragged into a war by an idiot Prime minister who was more interested in PR than politics.

    And who's lack of concern for the latter has left Britain totally exposed to the economic experimentation of the IMF, for which (as a public) we have yet to fully appreciate the consequence.

  22. Imightberiding

    A film about idealists well on their way to becoming cynics.

  23. Rip Current

    @someone I don't agree with

    Here's where I put in a catchy rebuttal to try to throw you off. Then I'll type in a few things in response that I believe are facts and may or may not be true, but I'll put them here anyway. This is where I backlash about the comment you said about something silly that I said prior, thinking that it would matter in the comments section, when I should know that it doesn't. Now I'm going to wrap up by quoting a well-known individual and top it off with a catchy outro-line and a historical or religious saying.

    Doesn't matter stop arguing.

    1. dustyfootobserver

      Heartfelt reply.

      Citation of section i enjoyed.

  24. migrantworker

    No ill will meant. Point in fact really appreciate the exchange, so please take nothing personal. I hope we can agree to disagree if necessary. Afterall its not the west who have a problem with that concept.. agreeing to disagree without having to go to arms. Ask yourself if the ideology of the enemy will allow for the betterment of humanity when compared to ours. Which is more tolerant, more equal, more just, etc. I do not claim perfection, but we, and I mean ALL the free peoples of the world, do far better at peaceful coexistence than Islam.

  25. Zatarra

    All this talk about tax's makes me think about april 15th thanks alot :P . War or no war no one knows how to spend my money better than i do. Has anyone tried this in america? If so u could put that documentry under comedy since the us goverment gets a large percentage of its revenue from quantitative easing and not tax's. The song at the end was great it is all about the price of oil. At least when it comes to war that is.

  26. migrantworker

    oops had another redundant thought at the end there... please disregard (More Bluntly, When)

  27. migrantworker

    I find it short sighted indeed to assume that there is not a long term strategy being employed by Islam. It may lack the specific stucture of what we consider a strategy, but it is dangerous to disregard the teachings of so many Quronic scholars. Its not as if these men deny this strategy.. Many of them boast it.
    Furthermore, how can you say that they are not killing on the magnitude that exceeds our own? For example: Since the 30s there has been a violent Muslim coup in the south of the Phillippines, they have consistenly exploited any power void they could in order to expand their influence in Africa, South America, Asia, and Europe, and done this for longer than the U.S. has existed. It was Militant Muslims who were starving the people of Somalia in the early 90s... the list is huge.

    Look just because we are a young Nation, we very quickly disregard the generational commitment of people. Our teaching of history tends to be Eurocentric and slanted to boot giving us even less to inform our view of the world. As a result we may lose our resolve in a decade, but they will be willing to kill and die to see their vision of the world expressed long after you and I are gone.
    Yes, I am willing to "go back that far" because that is the only way we may draw closer to understanding what is really going on. Believe me, the enemy's social conscience definetly goes back that far, and it like their holy book influences if not dictates their every action.

    More Bluntly, When

    1. dustyfootobserver

      Islam is not going to take over the world. The world bank and the IMF already have. Real terrorists don't declare themselves so openly. You need fear the hidden banker that bears no creed faith or moral constitution. He who oppresses without discrimination.

      Religious militant groups are giving the wrong answer to the right question. Yes the institutions of the world are failing us. No blowing stuff up isn't going to save the human species.

      The real menace in the middle east is not Islam. There are 1. something billion Muslims. We cant fight them all. We need not fight them all.

      The real menace in my homeland is tribalism, a culture of vendetta,
      and a lack of economic opportunity.

      When the West becomes the ally of the popular relevant generation of the middle east, and not of the puppet masters they have placed therein as well as in Latin America, than there is no longer the appeal of radicalization for the masses.

      This can be observed from Singapore to Sicily, for the most part a man with food on his table and a safe roof over his head is not as likely to become a radical militant.

      Maybe if we stopped calling them the enemy they would be less likely to think of themselves as our enemies?

  28. Animadversion

    Governments don't need your taxes to wage war, they have deficit spending. Luckily it has no limits, a good thing, given that war is eternal.

  29. princeton

    well.. if you wanna go back that far, Christians had their killing sprees as well as many other extremist groups. Thing is I don't fear some extremists.. they are not the ones killing thousands of people and destroying the lives of millions.. right now, our governments are doing this, and we are just fueling the fire of hatred.

    I doubt that any current attack on the west will have much to do with the fifteenth century. that is just reaching for an easy "they hate us cos we're free" type answer as opposed to facing the facts that we are killing them, and they want revenge.

  30. migrantworker

    Food for thought and more on point as to the Documentary: It should worry us that we are swaying strategic decisions by popular opinion. Fair enough that you may not agree with the leadership, buy why force them to do what they deem necessary for their people with less resources? That would seem to only prolong and increase the cost of such commitments.

  31. migrantworker

    I do not believe any barriers to peacful coexistence, with all peoples, are insurmountable. We must always back our pragmatism with optimism. We can get there as a humanity, but it will not happen if we deny that there are those willing to kill to enforce their agenda. To our shame, we must be willing to meet force with force... for now. Perhaps one day we will be able to lay down arms and agree to disagree, but until then we do not help the cause of peace by standing by while intolerant ideologies proliferate.

  32. Melinda

    I believe we can all agree that war is horrible and should be avoided. The question on my mind is how?

    If we could drop all international boarders tomorrow, and could shift all available resources to needed areas, how would you ensure that those same resources get to the hands of the needy?

    How does one go about establishing a cohesive structure to govern distribution? Would not out differing views both religious, and cultural present an almost insurmountable barrier?

    Would we also have to do away with private property ownership to ensure access to all available resources?

    I do not have the answer but I would love to hear the views of those around me.

  33. son of zaphod

    "War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives."

    by retired U.S. Marine Major General Smedley D. Butler

    Unite the planet and there's no need for War. However, around 6 billion humans on this makes achieving a United World all that bit more improbable, but not impossible.

  34. Anthony


    Go search for "the truth about killing" on youtube.

  35. sdt

    ´my brain reacts positivly to explosions´

    I´m sure your brain reacts very positively when you have a bomb go off in your home. This isn´t a computer game it´s people´s lives.

  36. abannedroach

    of course my comment was satire. i dont like war but somehow my brain reacts positivly to explosions. sure wars are prolly started by a few do*ches at the top but a lot of people sure go along with em. and some openly relish the battle field. here in my little town in kansas, i serve vets all the time at my job and i can't help but ask them how it was over in iraq or afganistan. i always expect them to have some kind of negitive experience, but most tell me it's fu*king awesome over there. and for the most part these are prety cool, nice dudes. i'm just a little disgusted with mankind in genral these days. i know some of us are trying not to be the klingons but i'm not sure that it would be natural not to be one.

  37. Anthony


    who knows its a wilderness of mirrors.

  38. migrantworker

    Like your insight... and have thought at length about the necessity or lack thereof of War. I'm confused however. Were you attempting to imply that small wars are necessary to avoid having the big one? For that is one of the most important ideas to imply if we are truly to understand America's foreign policy since the end of the second world war.

  39. amalgamated durables

    we need to split the planet in half so the killers can live on one half and the pacifists can live on the other

  40. migrantworker

    Much to the contrary. I do not propose that armed conflict alone be the solution for the current quagmire we are in. The solution will certainly take every ounce of good will and diplomacy we have alongside with our willingness to fight. My humble belief is that a solution will involve some kind of reformation of the Isalmic faith and that will be largley out of our hands.
    I cannot prescribe to your notion that America is at the root of the blambe. Islam has been engaged in this war of conquest for 1400 years, far longer than our nation has graced the globe.

    1. dustyfootobserver

      and the Romans, we should blame the Romans too. They did it far longer.

  41. migrantworker

    Sensible comments for both docs so I used it for both... We should all deeply contemplate what we are saying. More so I think when considering such serious issues.

  42. princeton

    some comments on here seem to mix up quarrels, arguments, fist fights with war. people will always have things and belief systems they will fight over, but this is not the same as war.

    this documentary clearly demonstrates the problem with governments... they will steal your stuff and use it to pay for all sorts of cr@zy things, like killing people and "education".

    our society is so backwards that we say, "you are allowed to disagree" but then add "of course you will be shot if you act on your disagreement"

    we are allowed to have different opinions about the war, but hey, if you actually act on your beliefs and keep your money, people with guns will come get you.

    the thing is that I know without taxation, all current wars would be cut short, because those soldiers are not going over there fighting for ideas, they're fighting for paychecks and bonuses.

    we know the majority of people would not pay for war or the government if they were sent the bill directly. we know if people were not threatened with jail time for keeping THEY'RE OWN MONEY, they would keep it and spend it on better thingsthat actually improve society.

    war is never necessary.. those people who profess a desire to kill us... well, you can thank your government and military for making them that way! its a result of wars and invasions, but you propose more of the same is the solution..?..

  43. Anthony

    People who say war is necessary obviously haven't ever thought about the subject at any length.

    Q) So what is war?

    A) war changes with technology with location with the enemy & obv. with time.

    Q) So if war is a good idea then What type of war might I fight in?

    A) A resource war or possibly (leading to) a world war

    Q) Who might i fight?

    A)If your in a resource war it will be developing nations previously known as 3rd world country's. So expect to face of against uneducated poorly trained militia with soviet era equipment.

    B) What if we have a good old world war.... well O-dear that will be developed nations, with large modern industrial capacity and intellectuality resources. Lets just say it will be short, lots of people will die, in-fact quite possibly everyone will die, since the use nuclear weapons may become unavoidable.

    So in reality don't ask yourself the question is war necessary? ask your self the following...

    do I like the idea of killing peasants?

    do I like the idea of everyone being wiped out?

    its unfortunate that bad television, fast food, Nike trainers and different shaped cars cost so much.

  44. Irishkev

    @ Migrantworker
    Is this comment the fruit of many hours of deep contemplation?
    It must be, You've used it for two different docu's!

  45. migrantworker

    The root question remains: Is war necessary?

    To those that contest that war is a creation of primarily economic pressures and ambitions I would ask: What economic gain have you seen in the western world from our engagement in Afganistan? If we are making so much money from conflict, how come war does not fund itself? Do you really expect me to believe that large swaths of Western leadership back the war simply to make a select few walthy? That Leaders like Tony Blair, who committed political suicide to stand by his decision, did it for some kind of sadistic personal power trip? Please. There is always an economic element to war. You dismiss much if you believe it to be the only reason.

    Most people, even those in the Millitary industrial complex, know that war is the most ugly and evil construct of man. I do not believe we have entered into these conflicts lightly.

    When another people profess a desire to see your way of life ended... Is war necessary? When these people arm political parties and respect only force as a means of governace... is war necessary? When these people, in the name of god, kill innocents on every continent save Antarctica... is war necessary?

    War is never good. But this is the "Good Fight." I only wish that we were not the ones to have to do it.

    "Expect the blambe of those you better and the hate of those you guard" -Kipling

    1. dustyfootobserver

      You know, in some parts of continental Africa, It is customary During a Man's initiation ceremony to utter a vow of vengeance to the white man for his subjugation and oppression of the African Man. Should we carpet bomb the Serengeti because some tribesman vows our destruction?

      I sure hope you never make it to power.

      We actively destroy their livelihoods, and are surprised they are resentful of our lifestyle?

  46. Waldo

    One more thing. The idea that we are morally responsible for what happens in a war because we pay our taxes is something I simply cannot accept. I do not choose to pay my taxes, nor do I have any control over how they are used once I pay them. Holding me morally responsible for the war because I paid taxes is like holding me morally responsible for the bail outs. You can't force someone to commit an act, and then interpret that act as a symbol or token of their beliefe or support. The act is something they were forced to do.

    It reminds me of that Bill Hicks bit were he talks about the guy throwing the gun at some unarmed persons feet and saying, "Pick up the gun." The guy says, "No I don't want to pick it up you'll shoot me. I don't want no trouble mister." But the first guy just replies, "Pick up the gun." So eventually the guy picks it up, and sure enough the first guy shoots him dead, and then says, "You all saw it, he had a gun."

  47. Waldo

    War happens for one of two reasons, we either fight over access to resources or we fight because someone has challenged our beliefe system. War will be a thing of the past when mankind learns to let go of beliefe systems and finds a way to make all resources available to all people. Believe it or not the former will be harder than the latter, in my opinion.

    It is almost impossible not to have a beliefe system of some type. I am not religiouse at all, but I still have beliefe systems. For instance I believe all men are born equal and with certain rights. Sounds like a good thing to believe, but it very well could be a path to war.

    Do we really want to live in a world were no one believes in anything enough to fight for it? I don't think so. Therefore I think war is a permanent part of our world, unfortunately. Some cling to the beliefe that eventually mankind will evolve enough to realize that this simple beliefe in equality and natural rights provides for the most secure and productive society. I hope that will be the case, but I doubt it.

  48. Anthony

    "Give me control over a nations currency, and I care not who makes its laws"

    funny old world.

  49. rydrin

    For one God gave mankind squat cause the dude doesn't exist. As for free will, that would be nice, sure we make our own mistakes but the major problems come from the suppresion of mankinds free will by a minority of knob heads.

  50. Nina

    to those that take offense to abannedroach's comment, count to ten, refrain from reaching for a slipper and take however many deep breaths you need to regain a peaceful state of mind. It may seem to you that abannedroach is ignorant or in serious need of good shrink, sadly I assure you that he/she is quite right. Although most live in a civilized manner and I used this term loosely, we forget that we are not that different from animals. However where an animal is driven to kill out of necessity, we kill for sport. In short, yes it is encoded in our DNA, and no war is not a natural thing and in the end the choice to be violent or peaceful is ours, that is why God gave mankind free will to make the right choices.

  51. migrantworker

    The Pinciple question that lies at the root of all war discussion should always be: Is war necessary?

    "You know Dude, I myself dabbled in passivism at one point. Not in Nam of coarse."

    -Walter, from "The Big Lebowski"

  52. Nathan Hunter

    war is not natural. to say that war is natural is to be in blind ignorance. war is a by product of self hate. if we were to learn to love ourselves, we could learn to love others. we tend to blame others of wrongdoing and judge them when the only one we should be judging is ourselves. its not our place to fix the world. its our place to fix ourselves and in return we will indirectly fix the world.

  53. Onur Yildirim

    @ abannedroach
    Go see a doctor, better yet a psychiatrist, please...

  54. abannedroach

    why be so dead set against war? so many people seem to be into it. of course this should be no suprise when you consider our reactions to violence. anybody see that movie district 9? wasn't it cool when he got the robot suit and started mowing down africans? full contact sports that simulate combat. millions of people like to watch fake people yell at eachother on telivision. maybe we are just the bad guys after all. thats right folks, we are the klingons. or at least we will be if we make it to space for real. you know... the ones with the greasy dirty ships and the grunting and the bad leather. sometimes it feels to me that evolution has a plan. in the natural world things click and make systems. we break systems all day long. maybe war is the cure, the final solution of the ALL LIFE to fix a mistake. maybe its in our natue to help udue the damege the aliens did to our genetic code. you know, when we where neanderthals. oops.