Break out the wine glasses... Some US military are finally leaving Japan!
People have been so indoctrinated by bad information and state-run education that they take completely false premises as gospel truth. A very common example is the ridiculous notion that "War is good for the economy" or "disasters are good for the economy" because they cause us to rebuild and that creates jobs. Folks, building stuff and blowing it up or repairing destroyed property is not good for the economy.
If disasters, like say, Katrina or the March 11 earthquake and tsunami (and subsequent nuclear disaster) were good for the economy then why don't we just bulldoze the entire country (including your house) underground and rebuild it... We'll be rich!
It's pretty obvious, if you think about it that way, why this notion is completely false. Read more about that in the "Broken Window Fallacy" here.
Some other dumb ideas are idea is that the government creates jobs. No, it doesn't. The government destroys wealth. It takes money from the productive part of society and gives it to the non-productive part of society. For example; the military. Sure, people in the military get paid and can call it a "job" but they don't give or create wealth in any way shape or form. Yours and my taxes pay their salaries. They don't contribute to the economy at all.
And while we're on the subject of the military, (and the US military is not unique in this case), wherever the military goes, bad things follow... A military base is a scourge for the local population. I am not one against prostitution, but, it is a fact of life that one of the main businesses around military bases is nightlife and adult entertainment.
It's been that way since the days of the Roman empire.
Lew Rockwell wrote about military bases in Slouching Towards Statism:
Young people are put in distant places where they face no supervision from family or an organic community. They have little work to do and an abundance of discretionary income. Their housing, food, medical care, and clothing are provided at no charge by the government. Nobody need plan, for example, to come up with next month's rent.
The grayness and regimentation of the military base masks a deep debasement. Illegal drug use is rampant, on and off the base, and has long involved more than half of the enlisted men (recent declines in reported drug use measure only a rise in dishonesty). Alcoholism is more than double civilian levels. Tattooing is normal, gambling is rampant, and in its discount stores, the U.S. military is the biggest purveyor of pornography in the world.
Go to any military base in the country and look at the kinds of outlying enterprises taxpayers unwittingly support. Once-nice communities have been turned into magnets for nude dancing, prostitution, and every manner of sexual profiteering.
Look at Georgia's Fort Benning. Apart from the military, the area is populated by traditional people with traditional morals. Yet along the main drag you pass dozens of brightly lit sex parlors, an alarming sight in the Deep South. The military here is a cultural cancer that lives off the taxpayer. It's no surprise that the military is riddled with sexual abuse: in their off-hours, these guys are feeding our tax dollars to naked performers. It reflects the absence of chivalry inherent in all government operations.
Other businesses popular around military bases are pawn shops and the sort of car dealers that cater to people who don't pay their debts. That reflects another dirty secret of the military: live-for-the-moment attitudes and bad credit are typical, as in any welfare culture.
Like I said, it's not just the US military that is this way. It is the way of all imperial powers and their militaries. To think that a foreign military occupation is a boon to the local society or economy is to selectively view a small slice of the issue.
While I go off on a tangent about the military, let me talk about the US military in Japan. Another really ridiculous idea is that if the USA closes military bases in Japan, then the Chinese will invade Japan and occupy it. Ha! That's funny!
Hold that thought and let me get back to it in a moment.... But first some news; Folks, Japan is an occupied country right now and at this very moment! The USA occupies it.
Anyone who thinks the USA is a benevolent country that fights wars to protect the rights of poor people and the disadvantaged and isn't interested in building an empire just hasn't been paying attention over these last, oh, 150 years. If the USA weren't interested in building empires (wars for resources, etc.) then the USA wouldn't have troops in over 130 countries, including Japan and they'd be long gone from Iraq (remember, "In and out in four weeks"?)
In spite of what the US government says, and is taught in school, to repeat; Japan is an occupied country.
Still don't believe me? Did you know that the US military enforces a "No Fly Zone" over some areas of the main island of Japan? Yep... Just like the USA did in Iraq and Libya.
"The United States has basically agreed to return part of the airspace over Yokota Air Base in Tokyo as part of the realignment of U.S. military forces in Japan, informed sources said Saturday.
"The basic agreement is expected to alleviate the overcrowding caused by the 470 commercial flights that must take detours around the so-called ‘Yokota RAPCON (Radar Approach Control)' area each day.
"The Yokota RAPCON covers the airspace above Tokyo and eight prefectures — Tochigi, Gunma, Saitama, Kanagawa, Yamanashi, Niigata, Nagano and Shizuoka. The military airspace is 7,000 meters high at its northern part and 3,700 to 5,500 meters in its southern part near Tokyo.
"Flights bound for western regions, such as Chugoku and Kyushu, have to ascend to avoid entering the banned airspace, while flights originating from those regions must make a detour south of Yokota, according to the transport ministry.
"The agreement, however, will effectively shelve Japan's request for the complete return of the airspace, which it has been seeking since the 1980s."
The United States is to shift 9,000 Marines out of Japan in a move Washington hopes will ease sometimes fractious relations with its ally over a huge American military presence.
The redeployment, which will see troops moved to Guam, Hawaii and Australia, will go ahead regardless of any progress on the moving of a busy airbase on Okinawa that had originally been a key plank of a deal with the U.S.
In a joint statement issued in Washington and Tokyo, the two sides said they remained committed to the relocation of the Futenma base from its present urban location to a coastal spot—a move that is heavily resisted in Okinawa.
The two governments “reconfirmed their view that (this) remains the only viable solution that has been identified to date,” the statement said.