"But whereas Drum and Klein addressed only how the outsize political influence of the rich affects economic and fiscal policy, Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz noted that it also distorts how we go to war. In a recent piece for Vanity Fair, he wrote:
Inequality massively distorts our foreign policy. The top 1 percent rarely serve in the military -- the reality is that the "all-volunteer" army does not pay enough to attract their sons and daughters, and patriotism goes only so far. Plus, the wealthiest class feels no pinch from higher taxes when the nation goes to war: borrowed money will pay for all that. Foreign policy, by definition, is about the balancing of national interests and national resources. With the top 1 percent in charge, and paying no price, the notion of balance and restraint goes out the window. There is no limit to the adventures we can undertake; corporations and contractors stand only to gain.
In other words: The more powerful the rich have become, the more they've shifted the cost of war downward. And because the interests of the rich are effectively the only interests now being represented in government, politicians have no incentive to avoid policies that exert pressure on the middle and lower classes. For the people in charge, war has gotten cheaper than ever."