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Beyond war and crisis
September 11, 2009 6:02 AM   Subscribe

Sustainable Security is a website launched this month by the Oxford Research Group "to be an important platform for promoting a better understanding of the real threats to global security in the 21st century and the policies that should be implemented to address those threats at their root cause." It highlights "four interconnected drivers of global insecurity: climate change; competition over natural resources; global militarism; and poverty and marginalisation. Prof. Paul Rogers makes the case for a rethink of the security paradigm.
posted by Abiezer (10 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
Another view on 'security' John Robb's global guerrillas.
posted by rough ashlar at 6:08 AM on September 11, 2009


Sustainable Security needs to hire a sustainable web designer so their site displays in Firefox correctly. blah.
posted by willc at 6:13 AM on September 11, 2009


I think that the rethinking the paradigm people need to rethink their rethinking of the paradigm paradigm because I am pretty sure rethinking the paradigm is the current paradigm.
posted by srboisvert at 6:43 AM on September 11, 2009 [4 favorites]


I think that the rethinking the paradigm people need to rethink their rethinking of the paradigm paradigm because I am pretty sure rethinking the paradigm is the current paradigm.

Yo, dawg!

I enjoyed Rogers' piece; it's interesting to see the difference between eastern and western Europe's defense spending, but I'm wondering if there's an element of keeping-up-with-the-Joneses that he's not taking into account. The positioning of reduced military spending as a consequence of a higher priority on health and education is an interesting one, too... I'm wondering if such a shift in thinking could ever happen in America, where cutting military spending is a suicidal public move akin to suggesting the police be disarmed.

"Pitching" hawks on how to reduce military spending for better funding for education and health has always been a challenge. I suppose there's always an argument that a healthier, more intelligent public will be generally more prepared for emergencies and better-equipped to support their nation in the broadest sense, but I can't see that ever working as a line of thought for people that really, really want to buy a helicopter that blows shit up real good.
posted by Shepherd at 7:33 AM on September 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


I love how adding 'sustainable' to something makes it more palatable. Like 'green' or 2.0' before it... along with it?

Sustainable Green Security 2.0- 2000!
Too Much?
posted by LD Feral at 7:42 AM on September 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


"Pitching" hawks on how to reduce military spending for better funding for education and health has always been a challenge.

For education you'd have to be able to show a better link between educational spending and outcomes. For health you're vulnerable to the observation that healthcare is generally needed most but can't be afforded by people who aren't vital to the national interest - old people and poor people. You might find a hawk an ally if you wanted to cut spending on Medicare and Medicaid, and replace it with an employment-insurance-funded model that would largely benefit working-age men and to a lesser extent their families, but I don't think that's what you wanted!
posted by alasdair at 7:44 AM on September 11, 2009


The positioning of reduced military spending as a consequence of a higher priority on health and education is an interesting one, too
I read that as merely saying it accounts for a smaller percentage of public spending because there's other major budgetary items, rather than suggesting a causal link.
posted by Abiezer at 7:47 AM on September 11, 2009


Of course, very-very-long-term, the only sustainable solution is finding ways round our Sun becoming a red giant and ultimately the heat death of the universe. Going 'back' to green living-with-nature-in-harmony scenario only works until the next big asteroid strike.

Of course, this begs the question: is our current unsustainable civilisation unsustainable because we are freely spending the Earth's natural resources in the rational pursuit of these long-term technological goals? To which the answer is no, of course not, we're spending it on cars and heating and bigger houses, because our ape brains work that way. But the technology might come as a side effect of the rampant destruction of the planet. Let's hope, anyway.

Must find an alternative to the phrase "Of course"
posted by alasdair at 7:49 AM on September 11, 2009


The fate of the universe is above my pay grade, as they say. But considering Gaia's lifespan in its entirety, the damage wrought by Homo sapiens before it flickers out will be as brief and transitory an episode as a day or two of stomach flu.

I find that an encouraging thought.
posted by Joe Beese at 10:27 AM on September 11, 2009


How are we supposed to take any threats to security seriously when the list doesn't include scary Muslims or filthy Mexicans?

Also, isn't the fact that there is no single "global" paradigm sort of the whole worm?
posted by rokusan at 7:18 PM on September 11, 2009


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