More and more these days we see political events, rallies, and protests turning into violent affairs– The St.Louis Protests, numerous clashes at UC Berkeley, and the “Unite-the-Right” rally in Charlottesville are prime examples of the utilization of violence to defend or attack an ideology. Most recently (as of 10/18) there was the brawl in Manhattan in which Antifa members attacked members of the Proud Boys, who retaliated as expected.
A great many people are troubled by this jackboot-style political engagement, in which discourse and objectivity have been deemed entirely too ineffective (perhaps too inefficient). But scoff– scoff I say to you who have such worries. You’re the horse traders, left behind in the debilitating smog of Henry Ford’s innovative masterwork that forever changed the face of humanity. “Buh-buhh-but what about my horses??” we all hear you blubber pathetically, bewildered by my enthusiasm. My bright demeanor in the face of this chaos is not unfounded– there is a mighty need in our country that requires a fix, and the organizers of these militias may hold the key to one of the United State’s major problems right now– the Student Loan Crisis.
“There are more than 44 million borrowers who collectively owe $1.5 trillion in student loan debt in the U.S. alone. The average student in the Class of 2016 has $37,172 in student loan debt.” cites Zack Friedman. That is a significant amount of money, considering that the average millennial have 20% lower salaries than the average baby boomer when they were the same age. Knowing that the millennial (18-35) demographic has a penchant for engaging in political activities, it seems like a match made in heaven. Let’s consider the cost of this, item by item, to see how beneficial this could be for all involved.
We begin by immediately enticing every single debt-holding graduate in the United States by offering to pay off their student loans as a sign-on bonus (this will all be contractual, of course) at an average cost of 37,172 dollars of student loan debt per individual. There will be no need for advertisement, as word would spread organically. Not to mention the organizations and their members nearly all have active social media accounts and an online presence, which means no additional cost.
Now for the monthly expenses. First on the list is rent, the national average being 1,050 dollars per month. Take into consideration that this cost for the entire group may be lower, as members could live together to save cost and simultaneously strengthen the group through the power of friendship. This bring us to food, which could 187 dollars a month for a “thrifty plan”, according to the USDA. The average cost of Utilities (electricity, natural gas, water, refuse, cable, internet) comes to 200 dollars a month. Then you must train them for the inevitable skirmishes they will face– doing basic military-style boot-camp drills would be virtually free, given enough space. Then weapon training in the form of firearms training at a local firing range. Robert F. Staeger of rangereport.org gathered information from all over the US, stating
“One blanket service that most ranges offer is a membership. (The most recent National Range Survey, conducted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation in 2011-2012, found that 81.5 of the respondent ranges had a membership of some sort.) Four of the ranges contacted for this story were public ranges that offered no memberships. Others offered memberships costing as little as $25 (The Gun Guys in Ottawa, Kansas) to $5,000 (a lifetime membership at Shoot Smart in Ft. Worth, Texas).
The investor(s) don’t need to worry about the fiscal cost of acquiring firearms or weaponry, as many members will come armed. If you choose a state that doesn’t require medical or vehicle insurance this comes to a rough expense estimate of 5,494 dollars per month, per person (travel covered by the individual). This would cost 65,928 dollars annually for the employer, creating an army for 7.8% of the roughly 850,000 dollars it costs the United States military to keep a single soldier overseas for a year.
A hidden benefit to this violent political unrest is the stimulation the economy in brand new ways as items get banned systematically by the government and new, exciting weaponry and defense equipment are developed. Much like those weapons, if organizations want to stay politically relevant in today’s rough and tumble political world of bucklers and Molotov cocktails, you must improvise, adapt, overcome. In a world where everyone wins, there are no losers.
Brendan C. Bush, co-creator and contributor at Heck Media