First a review - Who Rules Us? - The basic problem in America, therefore, isn’t Democratic versus Republican; it is instead democracy versus dictatorship. And this problem exists within each Party: each Party is controlled by its billionaires, not by its voting-public.
Next question - Who Wants War? - Did anyone ask you? Have you ever asked the fundamental question?
Butler - War Is A Racket - “I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during
that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big
Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a
gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for
American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for
the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of
half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I
helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers
in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar
interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit
companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went
on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few
hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I
operated on three continents.”
― Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
But what about the War on Terror? The War on Terror? No – It’s actually a war on world trade – by America!
……and it is going on right NOW: Stranger things have happened in modern history. Now appears to be the time for the Arab world to be finally ready to join the Quad that really matters: Russia, India, China, and Iran.
So how did we get here? History:
The war in Ukraine is not really about Ukraine - There are two major reasons that war has come to eastern Europe, and they have very little to do with Ukraine or the horrible sufferings of the Ukrainian population.
But they have everything to do with Russia, its president, and Russia’s current position in the context of global politics and the heretofore inexorable advance of American globalist hegemony.
Western Civilization was usurped by parasites - In creating what became the Roman Empire, an oligarchy took control of the land and, in due course, the political system. It abolished royal or civic authority, shifted the fiscal burden onto the lower classes, and ran the population and industry into debt. – M. Hudson - But running the population, industry and even governments into debt to an oligarchic elite is precisely what has occurred in the West, which is now trying to impose the modern variant of this debt-based economic regime – U.S.-centered neoliberal finance capitalism – on the entire world. That is what today’s New Cold War is all about.
So why do you not know or understand this?
At any rate, it is incredible that most people haven’t a clue as to why the current world-and-time is so extraordinary, amazing, and awesome. Part of the reason is, as stated earlier, most people fail to see the big picture because they are fixated on personal things. They care mostly about their jobs, family, and friends. Or, they are distracted by leisure and entertainment, especially as there’s plenty of those for people who don’t want to face reality. But, it’s also because people fail to see the significance of the period they are a part of unless it is over and can be reappraised with greater perspective.
So how did/do our rulers declare war on us? A summary by Michael Hudson: Well, the world economy is now fracturing between two parts, the United States and Europe is the dollarized part. And this Western neoliberal unit is driving Eurasia and most of the Global South into a separate group. The conflict really is between finance capitalism in the United States and Europe against other countries – China, Russia, Iran, India – that are following the more traditional ethic and strategy of industrial capitalism.
The question is: how are countries going to be economically planned? Because every economy is planned by somebody. In the United States, the central planning has been taken out of the hands of government and put in Wall Street. In the City of London. A very rightwing philosophy. In other countries, there is a mixed economy – China and the rest of Eurasia – and their objective of planning and money creation and credit is to create industrial capital to create the means of production.
Obviously, also environmental cleanup now, not merely the means of production but an overall economic system, not simply to make fictitious capital, finance capital, without any reference to the industrial capital base, the earning of labor and industry together.
So there are two economic philosophies and I began the book by contrasting the dynamics of industrial capitalism with finance capitalism. And industrial capitalism in the United States, Germany, England, and every country where it took off, was to promote a public investment in basic infrastructure monopolies in transportation, communication, education, healthcare.
The idea is that if the government would provide these basic services and basic human rights at subsidized rates – or freely, as in the case of education and healthcare – then employers would not have to pay labor a high enough basic wage to make labor pay for healthcare – as in the United States where 18% of GDP is for healthcare – or to pay for education, the 1.7 trillion that goes for student debt in the United States, not mentioning the education that is not debt-financed.
Finance capitalism basically sought to break away all of the public infrastructure. Most financial fortunes and financial fortunes in history were made just in the way that Zola had described, by prying thefts from the public domain.
But the financial capitalism doesn’t say… You don’t have to steal it; you actually make it your policy, giving away the financial domain in the way that President Yeltsin gave away all of Russia’s natural resources, public utilities, electric companies, anything that yields an economic rent that can be just easy income without any investment. And you financialize it.
You’ve had, for the last – really since the 1980s, but even since World War 1 – this movement to prevent industrial economies from being low cost. But the objective of finance capitalism, contrary to what’s taught in the textbooks, is to make economies high cost, to raise the cost every year.
That actually is the explicit policy of the Federal Reserve in the United States. Turn over the central planning to the banking system to essentially inflate the price of housing, with government guaranteed mortgages, up to the point where buying a home is federally guaranteed up to absorbing 43% of the borrower’s income.
Well, you take that 43%, you take the wage withholding for social security and healthcare, you take the taxes; the domestic market shrinks and shrinks. And the finance capital strategy is exactly what it is in the United States today, in Europe. Shift all of the money away from the profits of industrial capital that are reinvested in making new means of production. To expand capital into a shrinking economy where the financial sector intrudes more and more into the economy of production and consumption and shrinks the economy.
The rest of the book all spells out how this transformation from industrial capitalism to finance capitalism occurred and how the fight between the United States and Russia, China, Iraq, Iran, and India – it’s really a conflict of economic systems. There’s no rivalry because they’re not trying to do the same thing. The objectives of the U.S. and Europe are completely different from the economic objectives of Eurasia. It’s a war of economic systems. And that’s why the United States is trying to prevent other countries from following the same path to industrial prosperity that made the United States, Germany and other countries originally rich.
So you have on the one hand a high productivity, high standard of living economy that used to be in the West and is now in Eurasia, as opposed to an economy of austerity planned by the IMF and central banks, as you’re finding in Europe.
The Destiny of Civilization: Finance Capitalism, Industrial Capitalism, or Socialism. – by Michael Hudson
And if this is too complicated for us rubes to understand - our war is in the grocery aisle. GOT IT!