There are a lot of people out there that like to rant about free market economy – and of course it does have its downsides when getting out of control, e.g., in the chain of events that lead to the global financial crisis of 2007/08. But then again, there obviously are also many upsides – and some of them are not that straight-forward. E.g., in what came to be known as the Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention‘, in a book from 1999 economist Thomas L. Friedman posits that:
No two countries that both had McDonald’s had fought a war against each other since each got its McDonald’s.
There are a few exceptions to that rule – but not many. Of course, Friedman alludes to a more general phenomenon: countries that have made strong economic ties with one another have too much to lose to go to war with one another. Fair enough!
Anybody hungry now?