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    Former Guinness World Record Holder for largest book signing ever, Orrin Woodward is a NY Times bestselling author of And Justice For All along with RESOLVED & coauthor of LeaderShift and Launching a Leadership Revolution. His books have sold over one million copies in the financial, leadership and liberty fields. RESOLVED: 13 Resolutions For LIFE made the Top 100 All-Time Best Leadership Books and the 13 Resolutions are the framework for the top selling Mental Fitness Challenge personal development program.

    Orrin made the Top 20 Inc. Magazine Leadership list & has co-founded two multi-million dollar leadership companies. Currently, he serves as the Chairman of the Board of the LIFE. He has a B.S. degree from GMI-EMI (now Kettering University) in manufacturing systems engineering. He holds four U.S. patents, and won an exclusive National Technical Benchmarking Award.

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The Effects of War on Society and State

Posted by Orrin Woodward on October 2, 2013

Here is another segment of the new book I am working on detailing how war affects society and the state. I am not sure what is more fun, doing the research to prepare the book, writing the book, or sharing these segments with the readers. 🙂 Ok, they are all equally important to me as I love learning, writing, and sharing. Fortunately, all of my friends in LIFE Leadership have the same mindset of learning, writing/speaking, and sharing which makes associating with them so enjoyable. We must get government narrowed to the specific task it was assigned to do and liberate the rest of society to produce, serve, and love. In any event, here is the next segment. Sincerely, Orrin Woodward

Military Cemetery

Military Cemetery

Unfortunately, however, when government exceeds its delegated role of defender of internal and external justice, it damages the duplication duty of society in a much worse way than discussed above. For the Five Laws of Decline (FLD) predict that, when a state has the power to exploit a weaker nation’s wealth, history reveals that it does so by launching a war against its weaker rival. The states political conflicts digress into war when one, if not both, sides believe that the risk of war are outweighed by the potential rewards. In general, if one state has the power to plunder without penalty and the other has products to pillage without protection, then war, with few exceptions, is the natural result. War is an unjust aggressive act by one nation against another to increase its power, plunder, and prestige through pillaging its weaker foe. Indeed, war is the great bane of civilization. The state, without exaggeration, through its use of war, has damaged the duplication duty of society severely through killing more of society’s members than any other activity. Remarkably, the government, delegated the “monopoly of force” to protect society from internal and external aggression, instead uses the “monopoly of force” to intervene into areas of the Six Duties of Society (SDS) where it is not needed nor allowed. Eventually, when the state power has grown sufficiently through repeated interventions within the SDS, the state uses its increased power to exploit its weaker neighbors. Not shockingly, the weaker nation will attempt to defend its members life, liberty and property and war, violence, and injustice results. For the limited-government, originally assigned to ensure justice, has now become a powerful state used by ruling exploiters as a tool of unjust gain. Ironically, the former limited-government created to protect life, liberty, and property of society’s members has been transformed into a powerful state that attacks the life, liberty, and property of another society’s members. 

However, it isn’t just the weaker society’s members that suffer injustice here. For the injustice committed against the weaker nation is paid for by the loss of life, liberty, and property of the aggressor state’s society members. This point cannot be repeated enough! Simply stated, none of society’s members win in a war. In fact, the only “winners” are the successful ruler/exploiters who have gained through increasing the power, plunder, and prestige of the victorious state. In contrast, the members of both societies have lost their inalienable rights, delegated by the members to the governments for it to defend. Of course, the members of the defeated society lose life, liberty, and property, but what cannot be overlooked is the victorious society has also lost its inalienable rights. For when the state goes to war, it does so by sacrificing the lives of society’s members to achieve its military objectives, making the rulers “reasons of state” more important than society’s members inalienable rights. Moreover, during the conflict, liberty is sacrificed on the altar of regimentation to align society’s members towards the important task of destroying the “enemy.” Above all, the military campaigns cost copious amounts of money that is paid for by the property of society’s members. The plunder, in other words, won by the sacrifice of the society’s members life, liberty, and property, is not shared with society, but rather reserved for the state rulers.

Can anyone truly argue from an inalienable rights perspective that the victorious state’s increased power is worth society’s subsequent loss of life, liberty, and property through war casualties, increased regimentation and increased taxation? War evidently, appears to be the best method for the state to aggrandize its power through rapid intervention within the SDS beyond its delegated sphere of activity. In order to check the FLD, the ability to make offensive war must be checked or the nation will quickly digress from a limited-government to a practically unlimited-state. In fact, it has been the repeated failures of society to check the FLD in this crucial area that has caused the transformation of every limited-government into a powerful state. The unjust offensive wars are lose-lose proposition for both society’s members because they lose inalienable rights while state rulers gain power of society. Accordingly, the only just war is in defense against another countries unjust aggression of the society’s members inalienable rights. In historical hindsight, it is this increased accumulation of state power that destroys the SDS by using force where persuasion is needed, leading to the decline of the SDS as the FLD rise.

20 Responses to “The Effects of War on Society and State”

  1. Reminds me of a song: “War! Huh! What is it good for?! The government!”

  2. I just love reading your work Orrin! I am continually impressed with how you think and are able to simplify any subject, connect all the dots and lay it out for the layman without all the difficult language used by so many others. I am encouraged constantly to know that I can continue on my own leadership journey toward being able to think more like you, Oliver,the Life PC, and other great thinkers!

    Thanks again and may God continue to bless you and all that you do!


  3. David Fidler said

    I have served for over 3 decades in the military. This is so true. War should be a last resort in defense and not in aggression. However any government that consolidates their power into a strong central government will eventually foray into the realm of unjust wars of aggression. In recent decades we have increasingly pushed into the realm of unjust wars.

    I have brainstormed some concepts of amendments to the Constitution I think might allay this issue some although more importantly is an educated and virtuous (and I say involved) populace to keep the government honest.

    1-Except in times of Declared War the Standing military of the United States shall not exceed the following limits: Army: 50,000; Marine Corps: 25,000; Navy: 75,000; Air Force: 35,000
    2-Except in times of Declared War no officer of the standing military shall be appointed above the rank of Major General/Vice Admiral.
    3-All Reserve Components shall be members of the various state Militias (National Guard). Federal “Reserve Components” shall be forbidden.
    4-Except in case of invasion or Declared War no Militia unit shall be called up without the express permission of the respective governor.
    5-All new equipment shall be first fielded with the Militias prior to being supplied to the standing military.
    6-The term “Militia” shall be used for all reserve components of the US military. The various Militias shall compromise of the “Naval Militia” (to include the Marine Militia), “Air Militia,” and “Army Militia.”
    7-The “Joint Chief of Staff” shall be appointed from out of the Militia.

    • Orrin Woodward said

      David, First, thank you for your service in our country’s defense! Second, I LOVE the fact that you are thinking about how to check the Five Laws of Decline in our government’s overseas aggression. I will study these ideas further and keep posting articles until I complete the book. GREAT job! 🙂 thanks, Orrin

    • Eric Norman said


      Interesting suggestions. What suggestion would you give regarding the authority to declare war? (This is the flip side of having military power.) Technically and currently, only the Congress has the power to declare war, but in reality, the president has been able to sometimes get around that by declaring a “police action” or something like that. As I recall, there was never any declaration of was against Vietnam, and yet we ended up putting 1/2 million troops there as well as significant portions of naval and air power, and still South Vietnam fell. It seems to me that reforming the military should also come with reforming the way that military is engaged. Off hand, I personally don’t have any suggestions, but it seems to me that the military and the means to put that military into action are tied together.

      Thank you for your thoughts, David.

      Thanks, Eric

      • David Fidler said

        The authority to declare war is already specified in the Constitution and has no need to be changed. Perhaps what we need is something to clarify that any active military operations over… say 30 days must be declared as a war or ceased. However, I do believe that limiting the size of the standing military and forcing the president to ask permission of the state governors before mobilizing any militias would take care of the issue. A force of a few thousand is wholly inadequate to carry on any military operation of any size or duration. Historically the US has not had the ability to engage in any military operations of significance without mobilizing the militias, that is until after World War 2 when we for some reason felt the need to keep a large standing military. Prior to WW2 it was a major debate for congress to authorize an army in excess of 100,000 troops and it was only able to do that by mobilizing several divisions out of the National Guard.

        I wish I could remember the title of the book, but several years ago I read a book either written by or about the Chief of Staff of the Army in the early 1970’s. He recognized the problems caused by the Vietnam conflict and President Johnson’s conscious decision not to mobilize National Guard or Reserve forces. He thus came up with what was known as “Total Army” concept and pushed many of the support functions to the Army Reserves and National Guard. While the Active Army at the time thought it to be a great idea to give all of the non-glorious positions to the reserve components they failed to recognize as he did that this would then prevent the Army from carrying on any sizable operation without mobilizing significant reserve forces. See Desert Storm, Iraq and Afghanistan for examples.

        However ultimately the reality is as Orrin and Oliver DeMille teach, the only real means of preventing these types of abuses is an educated and involved public who will keep their government within the bounds established by the framers of the Constitution. Without this no amount of detailed amendments and laws will change the downward trend toward tyranny.

  4. Olivier Jean-Baptiste said

    Hi Orrin
    A couple of years ago when I acquired the understanding that imperialism IS NOT AT ALL a natural outgrowth of the free market process (voluntary interaction between individuals and group of individual) but rather the effect of the state plunder beyond its national border, I felt a tremendous sense of freedom because for years in my life I hated capitalism because I was looking at it wearing the glasses of communist/socialist propaganda.

    This quote from Richard Cobden synthetized well the point that you are making. Please allow me to share it.

    “Affaire of trade like matters of conscience change their very nature if touched by the hands of violence. For as faith forced would no longer be religion but hypocrisy, so commerce becomes robbery if coerced by warlike armament”


    • Orrin Woodward said

      Well said Olivier! What is amazing to me is how a solid LIFE Leadership education can take a communist/socialist and turn him into a leader and servant of people in a free market environment! Well done! 🙂 thanks, Orrin

  5. Rory Sayers said

    In addition to the humanitarian element of the atrocities of war. You have a given a perfect explanation of war as a wealth destroying means.
    One society takes their productive means to build things to blow up another societies natural and created resources. Thereby destroying both groups prosperity.
    It reminds me of the broken window theory by Frederic Bastiat.

  6. Steve Meixner said

    Orrin, Just wondering if you ever read the book (War is a Racket) by Brigadier General Smedley D. Butler? I just read it. Thanks to being involved with LIFE I now read quite often. Thanks to you a lot about History. Butler was a well decorated Marine. He was not against War but believed as I do and exactly what you have written, That our Military should be for Defense only. In fact he said the U.S. “Should build an ironclad defense a rat couldn’t crawl through” The book talks about who makes all the profit of War and who pays for it, the Soldier with his life and his family with their suffering whether he dies on the field or inside when he comes home. I am not against a strong Military, I served in the Navy. I just believe in defending our Country and not sending our young men all over the World to die. Thanks,

    • Orrin Woodward said

      Steve, I have read about General Butler, but have not read his book. I think I should though. 🙂 thanks for the recommendation. Orrin

  7. matt mielke said

    Thanks for your insight Orrin. My eyes have been opened to the horrific effects that that the 5 Laws of decline have on a society.

  8. Jason Dames said

    That is a very interesting look or view on war.. Thx Orrin I had never thought of it that way..;-)

  9. RIck said

    “Mahatma Gandhi once challenged politicians with an impassioned plea for them to understand that we are confronted by seven deadly sins:

    Wealth without work
    Pleasure without conscience
    Science without humanity
    Knowledge without character
    Politics without principle
    Commerce without morality
    Worship without sacrifice.”

  10. Elaine Mallios said

    Certainly we cannot just stand by and let our freedoms and liberty be taken away. Just like it happened in Austria and Germany…..people were silent. We cannot be silent!

  11. Heidi Szymanski said

    Orrin, I love the way you express these ideas without any party bias. Too many people get caught up in the party fight and don’t see the principles that are violated by all government in general. We become divided amongst ourselves instead of concentrating on solving the problems at their roots.
    Thanks again for all you do.

  12. robert wilcox said

    um boom! Fantastic Orrin … even though my head hurts from absorbing what i just read. We are only told of the superficial reasons of war…. oftentimes we understand a little bit of the depth of war and what it can do and the reasons for it … and here you really nailed it and you did it without any finger-pointing! I love this too and thank you for sharing!! “We must get government narrowed to the specific task it was assigned to do and liberate the rest of society to produce, serve, and love.”
    Robert wilcox

  13. Elizabeth Sieracki said

    Orrin- I am thankful that you defined “just” war. You do such an amazing job of breaking down concepts and making them more easily understood. Thank you!

  14. Rob Robson said

    Wow Orrin! I love fighting for the cause of Peace and Prosperity! Until around 2008, I considered anyone who protested the US engaging in military action a “stupid Hippie”. I loved all of the patriotic country songs that talked about how “We’ll put a boot in your A@#, we’re the U.S of A! Then, you introduced me to economists like Peter Schiff and Frederick Bastiat’s classic “The Law” and my whole world began to shift. I am so grateful that you are writing such a philosophically pure book that can stand up against those partisan talking points that constantly divide our country. I truly believe that the world is waking up to the corruption around them and there is a philosophical void being created. LIFE is arriving just in time with simple truths to fill that void! Fired Up for FREEDOM!

  15. Ben Kramlich said

    Thanks for helping to illuminate these truths about war Orrin. I find this especially helpful and power to learn how war relates to the FLD. Can you imagine if all of the 10% understood this today? How bright our future as a free nation would be! Another incentive to get to 1 million and beyond that much faster right?!

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