My university’s sporadically published bathroom stall periodical,cleverly called either Toilet Talk or Toilet Paper (memory escapes), presented a particularly infuriating fiction in it’s last issue. It repeated the popular sentiment that no two countries boasting McDonald’s restaurants had fought each other. Though the bathroom posting didn’t mention the source of this gem, it’s presumably Thomas Freidman’s The Lexus and the Olive Tree, in which the economist states that “”no two countries that both had McDonald’s had fought a war against each other since each got its McDonald’s.” I say states and not “argues” or “contends” because it’s an objective, falsiable claim, not an argument. The paper’s failure to attribute the quotation was probably did Freidman a favor, because the quotation is also dead wrong. For example:

  1. Russian Invasion of Georgia (2008)
  2. Israel-Lebanon (2006)
  3. NATO Bombing of Yugoslavia (1999)
  4. US Invasion of Panama (1989)

The first two postdate Friedman’s book, so he gets a pass. The toilet rag should have known better, six months after the most blatant counterexample. Now, some one really dedicated to defending this nonsense might try to say that the above examples aren’t actual wars because they weren’t formally declared or other such nonselse. But that would prove fruitless because a) I’ve already charitably excluded CIA black wars in Latin America and several civil wars from the list to preemt this semantic farce of an argument and b) this is the same tack high school sophomores in LD debate employ to defend democratic peace theory, and it doesn’t work for them either.

Some might point out that the point of the statement is to illustrate that capitalism and globalization work to reduce conflicts between nation-states. That capitalism reduces war is arguable. Arguing the point with blatantly false soundbytes glorifying a multinational corporation serving up billions of tons of mechanically seperated chicken is deplorable. Check your facts.