1. TOOLS, NOT WEAPONS.
Weapons always waste. They waste if they are used. They waste if they are not used.
Each year worldwide more than a trillion dollars, $1,000,000,000,000, is spent on weapons, which by design can only destroy property and kill men, women and children.
Meanwhile, every day 40,000 children die for lack of pennies worth of clean water and beans. The United States spends the most, a third of the world weapons total.
Action: We need to convert from making weapons to making tools - "From swords to plowshares." The longer we wait, the poorer and more insecure we become.
2. COOPERATION, NOT COMPETITION.
Cooperation produces wealth; competition reduces it. Cooperation makes everything easier; competition makes everything more difficult. Cooperation is win-win; competition is win-lose.
Imagine how much richer the world would be if the 20th Century had been a Century of Cooperation instead of a Century of Competition including war.
Action: Help, never harm. We need to resolve conflicts to mutual benefit.
Roger Fisher and William Ury tell us how in Getting to YES: Negotiating agreement without giving In. Penguin Books, 1991.
1) Focus on interests, not positions;
2) Be hard on the problem and soft on the people;
3) Invent options for mutual gain;
4) Insist on objective criteria.
Follow these rules and you will help make the 21st Century the Century of Cooperation.
3. EQUALITY, NOT INEQUALITY.
Countries with more income equality have higher life expectancy than countries with less, for example, Austria and Albania compared to Bolivia and Botswana.
Equal employment improves everyone's skills and, therefore, product quality.
Equal pay increases effective community purchasing power and empowers more people to meet their needs for food, clothing, and shelter.
Unemployed people produce nothing and have no purchasing power.
Action: Employ everyone by reducing the work week by the rate of unemployment. 0n incomes, the Provisional World Parliament set the rule that top wages be no more than four times the lowest wages, much more reasonable than the 500 to 1 ratios we see today.
4. ECONOMY, NOT WASTE.
In the name of scarcity, the competitive capitalist paradigm that dominates thinking today has led us to waste huge amounts of material, effort, and people in uneducation, unemployment, and over-consumption.
Action: Reject the one-sided hoarding culture of capitalism and pay people to educate themselves to the limit of their ability to do jobs that produce the most wealth with the least work, smart work.
We need not waste our lives working harder than necessary only to waste the products.
The goal is to promote a healthy economy, which means people living well and wisely.
It boils down to helping each other in a spirit of mutual respect and equality so we prosper together.
Originally written in April, 1984. Back to Bob's Home Page