In the more important centers of western civilization the chief item of public expenditure is preparation for a war of air, water and land machines that may extend technologically into a nuclear war. While we have no precedent that would enable us to gauge the consequences of an extensive nuclear war it seems reasonable to assume that it would further fragment an already fragmented European continent.
The heavy burdens of militarism which western civilization is presently carrying, have unbalanced budgets, which lead to inflation and to onerous burdens of debt and taxes. It seems unlikely that a group of warfare states like the top western European powers can escape the economic contraction which presently threatens them and regain solvency and stability through fiscal reforms or readjustments in tariffs and trade.
Our analysis of the politics of civilization may be summarized in four general statements:
1. Each civilization has consisted
of a cluster of empires,
nations and peoples which at some previous period have
enjoyed independence and sovereignty.
2. Relations between these erstwhile sovereign units have been determined by a shifting mixture of diplomacy and armed force, with war playing a determining role in the process.
3. In the course of survival struggle, political leadership within the civilization has shifted back and forth as one group has succeeded in establishing and maintaining its authority over the entire civilization.
4. A general axiom of the politics of civilization might read:
At the conclusion of each war among civilized peoples the victors are entitled to make the following declaration: We operate under the Law of the Jungle: “Let him take who has the power and let him keep who can.” We have the power. We have grabbed the real and personal property of our neighbors and we propose to keep it. Our friends are welcome to attend our Feast of Victory. Let our enemies beware.
THE ECONOMICS OF CIVILIZATION
Politics involves the exercise of authority—the policy making, planning, control, direction and administration of a community. Economic forces provide the wealth, income and livelihood—the wherewithal upon which a community depends for its physical existence, its survival, its geographical extension, the continuance of its life cycle.
There is no sharp line separating economics from politics. While the two fields are different in character and scope, they are so interrelated and interwoven that any successful attempt to separate them would leave the inquirer with two segments of a lifeless social cadaver. In the course of this exposition it will become increasingly evident, as the political and economic lines cross and re-cross, that the two fields are inseparable parts of a total body social.