The Late Great United States

The Decline and Fall of the United States of America

 

Joseph George Caldwell

 

23 March 2008

Revised 17 December 2008

 

Part One of Two Parts: Main Text and References

(Part Two is Appendices.)

 

 

© 2008 Joseph George Caldwell.  All rights reserved.  Posted at Internet web sites http://www.foundationwebsite.org and http://www.foundation.bw.  May be copied or reposted for non-commercial use, with attribution.

 


Contents

 

The United States Is Already Dead, and Just Doesn’t Know It 1

Reasons Why the US Will Collapse Soon. 2

Destruction of the Biosphere. 5

The Passage of Peak Oil 6

Overpopulation. 8

Fractionated Culture. 11

Decline in US Culture. 23

Loss of Spirituality and Manifest Destiny. 24

Globalization. 31

Low Security. 36

The Politics of Envy. 39

Oppression; Slavery through Debt; Compound Interest 40

Decline in Freedom.. 51

Alienation of the US People from the Government 54

The US Government No Longer Obeys Its Own Laws. 54

Civil Rights and Affirmative Action; Malcolm X. 56

The US Government Punishes Native US Citizens and Lets Illegal Aliens Flaunt the Law.. 59

The US Government Has Destroyed Security, to Generate More Wealth for the Wealthy Elite; Free Trade / Open Borders / Mass Immigration. 61

Illegal Aliens Are Killing, Maiming and Murdering US Citizens on a Massive Scale. 65

Never-ending War 66

The US Is Now a Fascist Dictatorship. 67

The Benefit of Productivity Increases Goes to the Wealthy Elite. 75

The US Government Promotes the Dollar Drain and Dollar Weakening. 76

Mexican Truckers Get a Free Ride on US Highways; Who Pays?  You Do! 76

The US Government Is Selling US Infrastructure to Foreign Entities. 77

Many US Jobs Are Being Exported, and Many US-Based Jobs Are Being Given to Foreigners. 78

Discrimination against the Capable. 83

The US Government Sues the Salvation Army over Its Use of English. 84

The “Dream Act” Is an Affront to the US Middle Class. 84

There Is Resentment that the US Government, through Its Policies of Mass Immigration, Massive International Free Trade, Open Borders, and Serving of the Wealthy Has Caused a Profound Decline in the Quality of Life for the US Middle Class. 85

There Is No Way Out for the Middle Class. 86

Quality of Life Is Declining for the US Middle Class. 87

Increasing Income Gap. 104

Political Incompetence; Political Deception. 105

Miscellaneous Technical Reasons. 113

Why the US Will Collapse Quickly. 132

The US Has Faced Troubles Before and Survived.  What Is Different Now?. 134

Can Anything Be Done?. 136

A Possible Reprieve: A Plan for America. 150

Projections, Predictions and Prophecy. 191

References and Suggested Reading. 223

Population and Demography. 223

Environment and Carrying Capacity. 223

Oil and Energy. 225

Miscellaneous Technical Topics. 225

War 227

History. 228

Government 228

Global Discontent 229

American Discontent 230

Immigration. 232

Food and Diet and Medicine. 234

Culture. 234

Religion, Race, Slavery and Revolution. 235

Religion. 235

Race. 236

Slavery. 236

Anthropology and Sociobiology. 236

Technological Forecasts. 237

Science Fiction, Predictions, Prophecy and New Age. 237

Science Fiction. 237

Predictions. 238

Prophecy. 238

New Age. 238

Examples of Technical Data Sources. 240

Examples of Technical Reference Books on Demography. 241

Examples of Technical Reference Books on Mathematical Forecasting. 241

Examples of Technical Reference Books on Simulation. 242

Examples of Technical Reference Books on Derivatives (including Stochastic Processes, Partial Differential Equations and related topics) 242

 


The Late Great United States

The Decline and Fall of the United States of America

 

© 2008 Joseph George Caldwell.  All rights reserved.  Posted at Internet web sites http://www.foundationwebsite.org and http://www.foundation.bw.  May be copied or reposted for non-commercial use, with attribution. 23 March 2008, revised 17 December 2008

 

Max: You know, one thing I can’t figure out is whether these girls are real smart or just real, real lucky.

Hal: You know, Max, brains will only get you so far, and luck always runs out.

                                    -- Thelma and Louise (A Ridley Scott film, 1991, MGM United Artists)

The United States Is Already Dead, and Just Doesn’t Know It

 

In the 1990s, I wrote the book, Can America Survive?, in which I analyzed the current situation of the United States and the world.  I started writing the book in 1994, revised it a couple of times, completed it in late 1998 and posted it on the Foundation website in 1999.  My brief answer to the question posed in the title was, “No, – not in its current form for very long, and perhaps not in any form at all for very long.”

 

In the years since I wrote this book, nothing has changed to modify my prognosis.  The problems that I described and analyzed have not been resolved, and not even addressed.  They have, in fact, gotten much worse.

 

It is my opinion that the United States, as a society, is in the final stages of disintegration.  The country has allowed the invasion of 12-20 million illegal aliens.  The financial system is bankrupt, and the government is now in the process of “selling the furniture” (i.e., selling its infrastructure, corporations and land to foreign interests).  The country’s culture is fragmented.  The government has alienated the citizens – it now serves the wealthy, not the middle class.  The nation has lost its sovereignty to “globalization.”  All that lies between its current status and total collapse is the “tipping point” – the proverbial “last straw” that breaks the camel’s back.

 

When I was a boy, we were taught that dinosaurs were so stupid that even though they were mortally wounded, they would thrash around for minutes before their small brains finally realized that they were dead, and they collapsed.  I believe that this perception of dinosaurs is no longer held, but the analogy is an apt one to describe the present state of the United States.  Its economic “engine” is so large and powerful that it has a large amount of “inertia” or “momentum,” that carries it along even though its vital essence, its spirit, has died.  It is like an airplane that is about to crash into a mountain.  Everything seems fine at the moment, but disaster is imminent and there is absolutely nothing that can be done to avert it.

 

Am I predicting a date for the collapse of the United States?  No.  In my view, the real collapse has already occurred – there is nothing of significance to predict.  As Ariel Durant once remarked, “A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within.”  The United States has destroyed what made it great.  It has abandoned the concepts and principles on which the Founders established the Republic.  It has lost its vitality, its life force, its direction, its purpose.  The government has turned against the middle class, and, without the support of the people, the country is in the final stages of dissolution.  It may continue operation for a while, but it is no longer a vibrant entity in control of its destiny.  The car is running out of gas, and the joy ride is almost over.

 

Reasons Why the US Will Collapse Soon

 

There is not just a single symptom or sign of the United States’ moribund condition.  (By the way, in medical parlance a “symptom” is a subjective indicator, and difficult to measure quantitatively, such as a feeling of nausea or anxiety, or a headache; a “sign” is a measurable indicator, such as a temperature or blood pressure or red blood cell count.)  There are many.  In Appendix A are listed a large number of specific indicators that suggest why the US is in trouble and will soon collapse.  The major sections of this book were determined simply by arranging that long list into groups, or categories, containing related indicators.  The following is a list of these categories.  In the remainder of the book, I will present a brief chapter discussing each category.  The categories are listed in order of my assessment of their importance.

 

  1. Destruction of the Biosphere.  Global industrialization is destroying the planet’s biosphere (global warming, deforestation, mass species extinction).  All countries will soon perish.  (Note on “global warming”: I am not going to get into the argument concerning whether global warming is happening, or what causes it.  With the imminent breakup of ice at the North Pole for the first time in human history, it seems pretty clear that something is happening (although some people point to volcanoes as the cause).  It doesn’t really matter very much whether global warming is happening or not, when large human numbers and global industrialization are causing the extinction of an estimated 30,000 species per year – that is a real threat to our existence, quite independent of global warming.)
  2. The passage of Peak Oil.  Global production of oil is peaking, and will start to decline.  Our society is oil-based, we are running out of oil, and there is not a comparable substitute.  All countries will fail as the petroleum age comes to an end and the era of global industrialization with it.
  3. Overpopulation.  The world and US populations are far higher than the current-solar-energy carrying capacity.  When global oil production starts to decline, a global die-off will begin, concurrent with massive political upheavals.
  4. Fractionated Culture.  Because of mass immigration and little assimilation, the country’s culture has become highly fractionated.  It is held together only by extreme wealth, rather than by race, religion, language, culture and ethnicity.  As soon as global oil production starts to decline, the wealth (glue) holding US society together will dissolve, and the society will disintegrate.
  5. Decline in US Culture.  To an increasing degree, US culture has become soft, undisciplined, greedy, selfish, egocentric, hedonistic and materialistic.  Through mass immigration from third-world countries, many of which are corrupt and inimical to traditional US culture, US culture is being overwhelmed by those cultures and reflecting them more and more.
  6. Loss of Spirituality and “Manifest Destiny.”  Many of the US middle class see no future, no hope.
  7. Globalization.  Globalization is destroying the hegemony of the US relative to other major world powers and the nation’s sovereignty.
  8. Low Security: With open borders and massive international free trade, the US is very vulnerable, both on the national and individual levels.
  9. The Politics of Envy.  Both within the US and outside of it.  (The “politics of greed” is the motivation for people to use political power to accumulate wealth for themselves; the “politics of envy” is the motivation for poor people to destroy those who have wealth.)
  10. Oppression.  The US government has adopted systems, programs and policies that have made economic slaves of the US middle class.  Debt is a major tool of the government in this system.
  11. Decline in Freedom.  Each year, Americans have reduced freedom.  Increased crowding from mass immigration and the “War on Terror” are the two principal causal factors.
  12. Alienation of the US People from the US Government.  The US government is no longer for the people.  The government is waging war on the middle class.  Its policies to vastly increase the riches of the wealthy elite have the direct effect of reducing the quality of life and discretionary income of the middle class, and subjugating it.  The US government has become the enemy of the people.  It is doing to the middle class exactly the same thing that the developed nations, through the international lending agencies, are doing to the third-world countries – miring them so deep in debt (through compound interest and debt-based money) so that they can never escape, are under total control, and are paying all of their discretionary income as interest.
  13. Quality of Life Is Declining for the US Middle Class.  It is now necessary for both parents to work in the competitive (paid, formal) labor market to support a family, whereas one person could support a family 50 years ago.  Children are in “industrial” day care.  Most young people today cannot hope to own their own home.  Long commutes; high housing costs; high energy costs; diminished access to natural land; high medical costs; epidemics of disease and obesity caused by the system, stress, and poisoned food.  Lower expectations for children.  The current system is designed to enrich the wealthy, not protect the middle class.  The goal and function of the present US political and economic system of US government is to “privatize the costs and socialize the benefits,” transferring much wealth from the middle class to the wealthy (e.g., via use of “eminent domain” and tax credits for the wealthy for major economic development projects; payment of interest on the national debt using income taxes, most of which come from the middle class; and “bailouts” of the wealthy when their financial schemes fail, also using income taxes).
  14. Increasing Income Gap.  Tremendously increasing income gap between top management and average workers, conspicuous consumption and flaunting of wealth.  Increasing media attention to conspicuous consumption and flaunting of income.  Instant billionaires.  The ratio of the pay of top management has skyrocketed from about 40 to 1 a half-century ago to over 500 to 1 today.  Heightened sense of economic class (wealthy versus poor).  Increased dissatisfaction, politics of envy.  Government policies and systems (income tax, the health care system and massive debt based on compound interest) transfer much wealth from the middle class to the wealthy.
  15. Technical Reasons.  (Factors involved in the collapse of complex societies, carrying capacity, economics.)
  16. Political Incompetence.  Just as King George III, US political leaders have failed to follow the dictums of Machiavelli, Sun Tsu, Liddell-Hart and others, and have lost the country.

 

This book is a summary.  It is simply an annotated taxonomy of the items listed in Appendix A.  It states my views and highlights my reasons for holding them, and presents a brief discussion of each reason why I believe that the US is finished.  Most of the points that I make have been made many times before by others, in much greater detail than I present here.  In a number of sections, when discussing very important concepts, I will include quotations from works of others, simply to show that I am not the only one making these points.

 

As part of the discussion, I cite references that provide additional detail.  For convenience, the references are also categorized, but the categories used for the references are not at all the categories used to summarize the categories of reasons for my view, since people write books on general topics and those topics are not the categories of reasons for my view.   The reference categories are not mutually exclusive.  For example, a book on the history of warfare might be placed in “war” or “history.”  A book on religion and ecology could be placed in either “religion” or “environment.”

 

Within each category of reference, I have sorted the items (mainly books) in approximate order of my assessment of their importance relative to the category.  Just because a reference is included does not necessarily mean that I recommend it or endorse it.  A number of references are included to illustrate views that I consider wrong, or to illustrate examples of bad predictions or poor methodologies.  (The references on predictions and prophecies are included simply for interest.  None of the information contained in any of those works has any bearing on the views presented in this work – in fact, a review of almost any of the older ones will quickly reveal how wrong and useless most of them are.  In general, I am loath to make predictions, and certainly any involving dates – this book is a discourse on the current state of the US, not a prediction of a specific year in which it falters or collapses.  Everything in the physical universe eventually dies – in the long run, there is nothing to predict.)

 

All of the references cited are books or other documents in my personal library.  For this reason, they should not be considered to be a bibliography – they are just a list of selected references and sources.  I have acquired these books over the years, in a casual way.  My views on the fall of the United States are my own, but they have certainly been tempered by what I have read.

 

One of the principal tools of intelligence analysis is “content analysis,” which is the scanning of documents, such as newspapers or periodicals, in the attempt to identify and understand significant situations or trends.  In a sense, this book may be viewed as a “content analysis” of the books in my library, with respect to the status and direction of the US.  If the list of references were a bibliography, it would include many “seminal” works, such as Malthus’ essay on population.

 

Except for a few examples of technical works, all of the references are non-technical, and many of them are “trade” publications (low-cost, popular editions of mass-produced works, such as paperbacks and soft-cover editions).  Most of the sources are from the past two decades, since most of the works dealing with topics relevant to the subject of this book were written during this time period.

 

Almost all of the references cited are “hardcopy” documents (books and pamphlets).  With the explosion of the Internet, there are many websites containing information relevant to the thesis of this book.  There are two reasons why I refer mainly to hardcopy sources: (1) most of the world does not have access to the Internet; and (2) relatively few books relevant to this work are available from the Internet in their entirety.

 

The major sections of this book refer to major readily identifiable indicators – symptoms and signs – of the US’ moribund condition.  These symptoms and signs are not root causes.  In addition to discussing these indicators and the current problems facing America (and the world) attention is focused on the reasons underlying these problems (such as growth-based economics, debt-based money, interest, and globalization) and their causes and nature.

 

To a degree, each section has been written essentially independently of others.  Since there is some overlap of the content of the sections, this means that there is occasional redundancy among the sections.

Destruction of the Biosphere

 

The main reason why the United States will collapse soon is that the entire system of large human numbers and global industrialization will soon collapse.  In the wake of the global collapse, all of the world’s individual nations will collapse.  The current system of human society is completely unsustainable, the principal reason being that it is destroying the biosphere on which we depend for our existence.  Global industrialization is generating massive amounts of waste that are not readily decomposed by geological or biological processes.  It is causing the extinction of an estimated 30,000 species per year.  It is causing severe pollution of the land, seas and atmosphere.  The pollution of the atmosphere is believed by many to be causing global warming to occur, which is likely to accelerate the mass human-caused species extinction now underway.

 

Throughout the planet’s existence there have been a number of mass extinctions.  This is the first one that is human-caused.  The first major book on this extinction is The Sixth Extinction, by Richard Leakey and Roger Lewin (1995).  Mankind’s destruction of the biosphere has been going on for quite some time (since the dawn of the industrial revolution), but began to increase exponentially with the advent of the industrial revolution and the tapping of fossil fuels.  The “wake-up” book on mankind’s destruction of the biosphere was Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring (1962).  The publication of her book opened the floodgates to publication of books on mankind’s destruction of the planet, such as Gordon Rattray Taylor’s The Doomsday Book (1970), Barry Commoner’s Making Peace with the Planet (1975) and J. E. Lovelock’s Gaia (1979).  Other well-received books on this topic include Bill McKibben’s The End of Nature (1989), Paul and Anne Ehrlich’s Healing the Planet (1991), Gerard Piel’s Only One World (1992), Garrett Hardin’s Living within Limits (1993) and Al Gore’s Earth in the Balance (1992).  Recent books on the subject include and Lester Brown’s Plan B 2.0 (2006) and Plan B 3.0 (2008).  A good compilation of articles on carrying capacity is The Carrying Capacity Briefing Book (volumes I and II, 1996) by the Carrying Capacity Network.  The Social Contract journal is a powerful voice on this subject.

 

The really interesting thing about the current destruction of the planet’s biosphere is that absolutely nothing of any significance is being done to stop it.  Countless books have been written on the subject for half a century, and the process is well recognized and understood.  Mankind, however, appears powerless to do anything about it – and this is a lack of will, not of know-how.

 

The only noticeable actions in response to the planetary crisis are anguish, wringing of hands, and the writing of more books on the subject.  Politicians routinely suggest measures that will reduce pollution or energy consumption by ten percent, while the human population increases by ten percent every few years, so that the net result is zero.  They continually reiterate that if only economic growth continues, then all countries will experience a “demographic transition,” the global population will level off and decline, and the planet’s environmental problem will be solved.  But this has never happened.  It has not happened in fifty years of trying.  Each year, global human population increases by about 70-80 million people.  Each year, planetary deforestation continues and another estimated 30,000 species is made extinct.  Continuing with their program will cause no decline in human numbers in the foreseeable future, and will result in the extinction of millions of species.  During the past half-century under this program, human population has doubled and the levels of pollution have more than doubled.  It is very clear that mankind will do nothing proactive to stop the problem, and that the process of global industrialization will continue to run its course until it collapses by itself.

 

The planet’s leaders tell endless lies about their actions in response to the crisis.  Recently, demonstrators climbed onto the roof of the Houses of Parliament in London to protest the construction of a third runway at Heathrow Airport.  Jet airplanes are known to be a major contributor to global pollution and global warming from greenhouse gasses.  Politicians claim to be doing something about this problem, but this is not true.  They speak out of both sides of their mouths.  They lie.  If they were planning to reduce atmospheric pollution, they would be speaking of closing down a runway at Heathrow, not of building another one.  Sheer hypocrisy!  This one incident is typical of society’s response to the current planetary crisis.  The planet’s political leaders have no intention of slowing global industrialization.  They are all calling for increased economic activity and industrialization, not less.  They are all calling for improved standards of living, which uses more energy and generates more pollution, not less.  With the announced intention of Communist China and India to industrialize and raise the standards of living of their peoples, the destructive process of global industrialization will accelerate.

 

The major reason why the US will collapse soon is that the system of large human numbers and global industrialization is destroying the biosphere and cannot continue, this process has been on-going for decades, and nothing is being done about it.  The situation is a classic example of Catton’s “overshoot and collapse.”

 

The Passage of Peak Oil

 

In 1956 the petrogeologist Dr. Marion King Hubbert published a paper in which he predicted that US oil production would peak in about 1969.  His prediction was rejected by almost everyone until 1970, when his prediction was seen to be correct.  Dr. Hubbert used his technical knowledge of geology and the statistical characteristics of the rate and size of oil deposit discoveries to make his prediction.  If you plot a curve showing national oil production by year (a “time series”), the plot (smoothed to remove minor fluctuations) resembles a “bell-shaped” curve that is low in the early 20th century, rises to a maximum about 1969, and declines thereafter.  This curve has come to be known as “Hubbert’s Curve,” and the point at which the oil production is a maximum is called “Hubbert’s Peak.”

 

Upon seeing the impressive success of Hubbert’s methodology in predicting the decline of US oil production, others applied his methods to predict the peaking of global oil production.  Their analysis indicates that global oil production will likely peak this decade.  From approximately now on, if global industrialization continues, global oil production will start to decline, and most of the planet’s commercially recoverable oil will be gone by 2050.  The peaking of global oil production is referred to as “Peak Oil.”  (The average production life of an oil field is about thirty years.  For a large area (many oil fields), the production curve is similar in shape to the discovery curve, lagging by about thirty years.  Global discoveries peaked in about 1974, and global production is expected to peak about now.)

 

Many books have been written on the subject of Peak Oil.  One of the best is Hubbert’s Peak: The Impending World Oil Shortage, by Kenneth S. Deffeyes (2001).  Others on the same topic include Paul Roberts’ The End of Oil (2004) and Matthew R. Simmons’ Twilight in the Desert (2005).  A comprehensive history of oil is Daniel Yergin’s The Prize (1991) (also a PBS television documentary).  An excellent documentary about the passing of oil is A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash (2006) produced and directed by Basil Gelpke and Ray McCormack (available on DVD; excerpts may be viewed on YouTube).

 

Some people have a difficult time understanding or accepting the concept of Hubbert’s Curve.  They point to the fact that new oil deposits are continually being found as evidence that this will continue forever.  An example might make the concept easier to understand.  Suppose that someone has a container filled with coins – quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies – and that he throws handfuls of the coins across a cornfield (maize field) and plows the field.  The field represents the surface of the Earth, and the coins represent oil deposits – the coins of different values represent oil deposits of different sizes.  Wherever a handful of coins was thrown there is a large “oil field.”  Elsewhere there is no oil at all.  Now, each year that the field is plowed for a new crop, look for coins and pick them up.  The first year, you will find quite a few.  The next year, you will find less.  Each year you will find fewer and fewer coins, because there are just a finite number of them and you are removing them – they are not being replaced (unless you subscribe to the Russian’s abiogenic theory of oil creation).  After a number of years, you would be able to estimate the relative proportions of quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies.  You could draw a curve showing how many coins were found each year, and extrapolate it to estimate how many coins (of each size) will be found each year in the future.  From this you could estimate the total number of coins in the field (of each size) and the total value remaining.  To do this you do not need to know anything about the number or mix of coins that were distributed in the field.  This is exactly how Hubbert’s Curve is constructed.

 

Since the major source of energy for the industrial world is oil, and since the high levels of food production have been enabled by oil, the decline in global oil production will usher in an era of massive economic and social disintegration.  Good books on this topic include Thom Hartmann’s The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight (1998) and Richard Heinberg’s The Party’s Over (2003) and Power Down (2004).  An excellent website for source material on this topic is Jay Hanson’s Die Off website at http://www.dieoff.com .

 

The reason why Peak Oil is expected to result in massive economic and social upheaval is that the major source of energy for the industrial world is oil, and it is not easily replaced.  Oil can be used for many things, such as plastics, fertilizers and other chemicals, not just as a source of energy.  Also, it is easily transported, i.e., can be stored on cars, trucks, ships and airplanes.  The production of synthetic oil (e.g., from coal) requires much energy (e.g., from the coal).  Moreover, this is but a stop-gap measure – all coal will be gone within a few hundred years (or much sooner, if much of the coal is converted to oil, since much energy is required to synthesize oil from coal).  Electricity can be used for land transport, but only for a stable population (e.g., trolley cars, electric trains, subways).  Solar energy (e.g., hydroelectric, biomass, wind, solar thermal, solar cell) can replace only a small fraction of the energy now obtained from oil, and it is not as high grade or as transportable.  Believing that solar energy will be a replacement for oil is laughable.  If it were, we would see plenty of solar-energy-powered factories producing more solar factories, and there would be no “energy crisis.”  (People are finally beginning to write about the folly of turning to biomass as a replacement for oil.  See, for example, Walter Williams’ column, “Ethanol’s a scam, not a solution” (Creators Syndicate, 16 March 2008) and the cover feature of the 7 April 2008 issue of Time magazine, “The Clean Energy Scam,” by Michael Grunwald, which discusses, among other things, the effect of using biomass on the destruction of forests in Brazil.)  Uranium can provide energy for a long time, but only if used in fast-breeder reactors, which produce plutonium.  The idea of having thousands of plutonium-producing “factories” around the globe in this era of terrorism is rather absurd.  Nuclear energy produces radioactive waste that lasts for tens of thousands of years.

 

The world population has soared from one billion to 6.7 billion because of oil, and it will decline back to low levels as global oil production falls.

 

It is worth noting that not everyone subscribes to the inevitability of Hubbert’s Peak.  An implicit assumption in the application of Hubbert’s methodology is that the oil deposits were created many eons ago (by biological processes), and are hence of essentially fixed size.  An alternative theory is that oil is also geological in origin (“abiogenic petroleum origin”).  The Russians subscribe to this theory, and they are finding much oil.  It is also worth noting that the methodology for constructing Hubbert’s Curve does not depend on an assumption about the origin of oil – it is based only on empirical statistics (on oil deposit sizes and discoveries), but it does assume that the amounts are essentially fixed.

 

Many people view the passing of Peak Oil as a disaster.  It is in fact a chance for salvation – a chance to save what remains of the biosphere’s species, before further damage occurs.  It is oil that has fueled large human numbers and global industrialization, with the resultant environmental destruction and mass species extinction.  The sooner the fossil-fuel-energy age is over, the sooner the mass species extinction may come to an end.  Switching to other fossil fuels or carbon-based fuels (e.g., coal, gas, oil shale) as global oil production declines simply continues the biospheric destruction.  Continuing to use fossil fuel in any form simply allows global industrialization to continue, causing the mass species extinction to continue for a longer time.  There are two points here: (1) fossil fuels will exhaust soon, and there is no comparable energy replacement for them; and (2) because large human numbers and industrial activity are causing mass species extinction, finding an alternative energy source, even if it were possible, would simply continue the biospheric destruction and species extinction.  Like a drug addict or alcoholic, we may want more energy, but we don’t need it – and it would destroy us if we were to find it.

 

Economists have been saying for decades that if the price of oil gets high enough, then substitutes for oil will be found.  The price has risen from $10 a barrel to over $100 a barrel in recent years, and no comparable replacement has been found.  And no matter how high the price goes, it will never buy back the species that have been made extinct.  Striving to keep human energy use at high levels is tantamount to striving to continue global warming and species loss.

 

Overpopulation

 

It is an historic certitude that human populations (and most others) expand to the limit of the food supply.  It is also a fact that if the food supply collapses, the population also collapses.  The major book on this subject is William R. Catton, Jr.’s Overshoot: The Ecological Basis of Revolutionary Change (1980).  A more recent work on the subject is Jared Diamond’s Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (2005).  See also Jay Hansen’s Die Off website (http://www.dieoff.org ).  Population collapse may occur for a number of reasons, such as climate change, deforestation, soil fertility changes, overfishing, overhunting and pests.  The large size of today’s human population has been enabled by oil.  As oil production declines, global food production will decline, and a massive human die-off will occur (from starvation or war).

 

As the petroleum age draws to a close, human society will return to a solar-energy-based civilization.  To be sure, there are some other significant energy sources on the planet in addition to oil.  One is nuclear energy.  It is not a viable long-term solution because it generates large and intractable amounts of waste.  For uranium supplies to last for a long time, they must be used in fast-breeder reactors, which produce plutonium.  In this age of terrorism, the presence of a large number of plutonium-producing plants scattered around the planet is not a stable situation.  Another source of energy is coal.  The planet is estimated to contain sufficient coal to fuel industrial society for several hundred years, but the problem of burning the coal without releasing the carbon into the atmosphere (and causing a lethal greenhouse gas effect) has not been solved.  Also, the conversion of coal to oil (e.g., via Fischer-Tropsch liquefaction) requires much energy – if this is done, the coal supply will not last nearly as long as it would if used directly.  (A couple of years ago there was much talk about using America’s vast coal reserves to produce oil and more electricity, but those plans have collapsed – the “energy” cost of making oil from coal or pollution-free electricity from coal is very high.)  The feasibility of using nuclear fusion to generate electricity has been demonstrated in the laboratory, but despite a half-century of trying, the practicality of this energy source remains elusive.  The evidence seems overwhelming that as oil depletes, human society will return to existing on recurrent solar energy.

 

(The concept of “carbon sequestration” to place the carbon dioxide formed from the burning of fossil fuel is laughable.  The carbon is already sequestered – why not simply leave it where it is?  Some day, all coal will be gone, and so burning of coal is not a long-term solution to society’s energy requirements.  Absent a good use for the energy (e.g., using it to transit to a different system of planetary management, one that is long-term sustainable for the biosphere and the human species), there is no point to using the coal at all – by prolonging the industrial age it simply causes the extinction of countless more species.)

 

The “awkwardness” of the present situation is that solar energy can support only a small fraction of the world’s current population.  At a low level of living, solar energy can support about 500 million people.  At a high level of living, it can support on the order of about 5-10 million people.  As global energy supplies exhaust, human population will fall back to these numbers (i.e., will die off).  The only significant issue is, as Joel Cohen and others have put it, “how many people, at what level of living.”  The recurrent-solar-energy budget is fixed.  All that may be decided is whether to use it to support a high level of living for a few people or a low level of living for a larger number.  In any event, the size of a long-term-sustainable solar-energy-based human population is far smaller than the current human population.  (For discussion of human carrying capacity, see, for example, David and Marcia Pimentel’s Food, Energy, and Society (1979, 1996), and Joel Cohen’s How Many People Can the Earth Support? (1995).)

 

The US has made no efforts to prepare for life in a recurrent-solar-energy-based world.  At a low level of living, recurrent solar energy can support (long term) about 63 million people in the US; at a high level of living, recurrent solar energy can support about one-tenth this number, or 630 thousand.  The current (2008) population of the United States is 304 million, and it is increasing by about three million per year (from immigration).  That is about five to fifty times as many as can be supported by recurrent solar energy, and the situation is getting worse every year.  It is interesting to compare the situation for the US to that for Russia.  Although Russia has a larger total land area than the US, it has less arable land.  At a low level of living, solar energy can support about 44 million people in Russia, and at a high level of living it can support about 440 thousand people.  The current population of Russia is 142 million people, and it is declining by about one-half million per year.  This is about three to thirty times what solar energy can support, but at least Russia is headed in the right direction (i.e., its population is declining to a recurrent-solar-energy-based level).   (The statistics on populations supportable by solar energy are taken from Can America Survive? and related documents at http://www.foundationwebsite.org/canam4x.htm , http://www.foundationwebsite.org/PopAnalysisAllCountries.txt and http://www.foundationwebsite.org/PopProfileAllCountries.txt .)

 

When populations change size for the usual demographic reasons (changes in birth rates, death rates, and migration rates under peaceful conditions), they change rather slowly.  Even if the US started today to bring its population into line with solar energy limits by stopping all immigration and adopting a one-child-per family policy (as in Communist China), its population would not start to decline for some time (due to “momentum” of the “population pyramid,” as the current children reach child-bearing age), and would then decline slowly.  Unfortunately for those who would like to continue US and world populations at a high level, the decline in global oil production is upon us, and they will soon be declining rapidly.  The amount of energy available to support the human population is about to begin to fall rapidly, and there is little that can be done about it (oil can be pumped out of the ground just so fast).  When the global oil production decline is in full fall, global population will fall by about one hundred and fifty million per year.  Considering that the global population is currently increasing by about 70-80 million per year, this means that an average of about 220-230 million deaths a year will occur from starvation or war over the next four decades.

 

The US imports more than half of its oil (about sixty percent, according to The Oil Drum (http://www.theoildrum.com/node/3233)).  For some time, it will be able to continue oil imports by paying a lot for them, and let people in other countries starve to death (or reduce demand by wholesale extermination of the population of other countries).  Eventually, however, there will simply not be oil for anyone at any price, and, despite what cornucopians such as Julian Simon may claim, there is no comparable substitute that heightened demand will create.  At that point, all nations still in existence will revert to solar-based agriculture.

 

(There is a famous wager that was made once offered by Julian Simon to Paul Ehrlich (author of The Population Bomb (1968)), in which Simon bet that the price of commodities, including grain and fossil fuels, would not rise in price in future years.  Here is a quote from Simon’s book, The Ultimate Resource 2 (1996): “The first edition of this book contained this statement: This is a public offer to stake $10,000, in separate transactions of $1,000 or $100 each, on my belief that mineral resources (or food or other commodities) will not rise in price in future years, adjusted for inflation.  You choose any mineral or other raw material (including grain and fossil fuels) that is not government controlled, and the date of the settlement.  Offering to wager is the last resource of the frustrated.  When you are convinced that you have hold of an important idea, and you can’t get the other side to listen, offering to bet is all that is left.  If the other side refuses to bet, they implicitly acknowledge that they are less sure than they claim to be.”  For many years, Simon bragged that he would have won the bet, had it been made.  All it took, however, for the price of commodities to start to rise was for the world to reach Hubbert’s Peak.  Now, the price of oil is about $100 per barrel, and the price of grains is also rising (adjusted for inflation).  And, of course, no amount of demand increase can bring back the species that have been lost from large human numbers and industrial activity.  In the long run, Ehrlich was right.  In the long run, Malthus will be proven right.)

 

Some people do not like to use the word “overpopulated,” asserting that there is no such thing, that there can never be a “surplus” of people.  This is a foolish denial of the way things are.  The large current US population has been made possible and is sustained by the availability of large amounts of oil.  When the oil is gone, the population will fall.  That condition is overpopulation.

 

Fractionated Culture

 

Massive Immigration without Assimilation Has Fractionated the United States’ Culture and Society

 

After the invasion of North America by the Europeans and the die-off of the Indians (from disease, starvation, dispossession of their lands and extermination of the buffalo (bison)), North America was a patchwork of different cultures – the Spanish in (what is now) Florida and the US Southwest, the French in eastern Canada and the Louisiana Territory (the middle third of the US) and the British in the eastern US.  After the US was founded, it received waves of immigrants from Europe, such as from Germany, Ireland and Scandinavia.  Gradually, as English became the country’s principal language and immigration continued mainly from Europe, the US coalesced into a strong nation.  It had a single language and was largely white and Protestant.  The native American Indians had been decimated.  The largest single minority was African slaves (Indians do not make good slaves).  As the Industrial Revolution progressed, the country freed the slaves and eventually accommodated the Africans and integrated them into the mainstream American culture.

 

This process is now being reversed, by mass immigration over a short period of time by alien cultures from around the world.  The largest single block of immigrants is from Mexico, and there has been little attempt to require them or even encourage them to speak English.  Mass immigration is the result of the Immigration Act of 1965 (The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 or the Hart-Celler Act, which amended the Immigration Act of 1924).  Prior to passage of this Act, immigration was restricted to small numbers of people from the same European countries and cultures that had settled the country and made it strong and great.  After passage of the Act, immigration swelled to massive numbers, and most were from alien (nonEuropean) cultures.  As legal immigration from alien cultures increased, with little assimilation there were now present in the population many people who were obviously foreign, and it became very easy for illegal immigrants to “blend in.”  Strong legislation was passed to prevent discrimination against legal immigrants, and it soon became impossible (in today’s politically correct society) to discriminate against illegal ones.  Illegal immigration increased to extremely high levels – presently about two million per year – far eclipsing legal immigration.  Over time, the US became very fractionated, with respect to all components of culture (“peoplehood”) – race, language, religion, ethnicity and politics.

 

This process of fractionation has been evident for a long time.  The first major book on the subject was Joel Garreau’s The Nine Nations of North America (1981).  As the process of fractionation became more extensive and obvious, many more books were written on this subject, including Arthur Schlesinger’s The Disuniting of America (1991), Lawrence Auster’s The Path to National Suicide (1990), Rosalie Pedalino Porter’s Forked Tongue (1990), Brent Nelson’s America Balkanized (1994), Georgie Anne Geyer’s Americans No More (1996), Patrick Buchanan’s The Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Civilization (2002) and State of Emergency (2006).  There are many books on immigration, including Peter Brimelow’s Alien Nation (1995) and Jean Raspail’s prophetic novel, The Camp of the Saints (1973).  A very comprehensive source on immigration is The Immigration Briefing Book, by the Carrying Capacity Network (1994).

 

In his book, Day of Reckoning (2007), Patrick Buchanan observes, “Is diversity a strength?  In the ideology of modernity, yes.  But history teaches otherwise.  For how can racial diversity be strength when racial diversity was behind the bloodiest war in U.S. history and has been the most polarizing issue among us ever since?”  Buchanan quotes findings of Robert Putnam, author of Bowling Alone on the subject of diversity in America:  “His research shows that the more diverse a community is the less likely its inhabitants are to trust anyone – from the next-door neighbor to the mayor….  Prof. Putnam found trust was lowest in Los Angeles, ‘the most diverse human habitation in human history….’

 

“…By 1960, 88.6 percent of our nation was of European stock and 95 percent Christian. America had never been a more united nation. African Americans had been assimilated into the Christian faith and national culture if not fully into society. While Jews, perhaps 4 percent of the population, were non-Christians, their parents or grandparents had come from European Christian nations.

 

“Since the cultural revolution of the 1960s and the Immigration Act of 1965, however, the ethnocultural core has begun to dissolve. Secularism has displaced Christianity as the faith of the elites. The nation has entered a post-Christian era. There is no longer a unifying culture. Rather, we are fighting a culture war. And the European ethnic core is shrinking. From near 90 percent in 1960, it is down to 67 percent today, and will be less than 50 percent by 2040.

 

“Here we come to the heart of the matter.

 

Quo Vadis, America? Where are you going?

 

“If we have no common faith and are divided by morality and culture, and are separated by ethnicity and race, what holds us together?  Especially in light of Putnam’s report that ‘diversity’ dilutes ‘social capital,’ erodes communities, and engenders mutual mistrust.”

 

Buchanan makes a number of other comments on diversity and related topics.  Excerpts are presented in the Appendices.

 

Near the end of his book, Buchanan quotes Euripides: “There is no greater sorrow on earth, than the loss of one’s native land.”  The truth of this statement is profound.  It has been said that we do not own the land, that it owns us.  We are rooted in our land, as much as in our culture.  When we lose our native land, we have lost the physical link to our culture and our heritage.  We have lost something as significant as our parents and our family.  Economic development is destroying the lands that I knew as a boy in Canada and the United States.  The wooded areas in which I used to hike are now all destroyed, consumed by highways, housing developments, schools and shopping centers.  When I was a boy in Spartanburg, the city water supply was a pleasant little lake called Rainbow Lake.  We used to go swimming there on weekends.  Family reunions were held in the Rainbow Lake Pavilion.  The population of Spartanburg back then was about 50,000 people.  Most people could walk to school – certainly to elementary school, and in many cases to high school.  Now, with a population of several hundred thousand, Rainbow Lake has been destroyed, replaced by a much larger Lake Bowen (Bill Bowen, who planned the lake, was an uncle of mine by marriage).  The amazing thing about this is that we now have water shortages!  All that matters to the controllers of the US is wealth, and creation of scarcity is one of the best ways of increasing the value of things.  Unfortunately, economic growth destroys nature.  It is destroying our native land.

 

Some Background on the Passage of the Immigration Act of 1965

 

The drive for the Immigration Act of 1965 came from interests that strove to weaken the traditional, mainstream, dominant US culture, which was white Anglo-Saxon Protestant (WASP, European, Northern European, Nordic, Teutonic).  The two principal actors in passage of the Act were Senator Edward Kennedy and the Jewish Anti-Defamation League (ADL) (the Act was sponsored by Senators Emmanuel Celler and Philip Hart).  Both parties sought to weaken the dominance of Teutonic culture in the United States.  The ADL was founded in 1913 after the lynching of Leo Frank in Atlanta.  A description of the ADL’s work in promoting mass immigration to the US from alien cultures is presented in Kevin MacDonald’s The Culture of Critique (1998).  A discussion of Senator Kennedy’s role in passage of the Act is presented in Lawrence Auster’s The Path to National Suicide (1990).

 

(In this section and a later one, there is a fair amount of discussion of Jewish groups and Jewish culture.  I have no particular interest in Jews or Judaism, and my discussion of them in this work arises simply from my observations of the significance of their role in affecting US culture and security, in observing the remarkable success of their efforts in statecraft and nation-building, and in comparing the success of their efforts to those of the United States.)

 

In working together for passage of the Act, Senator Kennedy and the ADL had different motives.  Although Senator Kennedy was (and is) a Catholic, his sponsorship of the Act had little to do with his Catholic religion.  The passage of time has shown that the Catholics as a group have little interest in “taking over” the US government, culture, or country.  (During the era of the Papal States, the Roman Catholic Church was very interested and involved in acquisition and use of political power.  While the Roman Catholic Church is still quite concerned with material wealth and still operates a small country (the Holy See, Vatican City), it is not at present involved in major political operations.)  Although far fewer in numbers than Protestants, they view themselves (as Christians) very much as an integral part of the traditional US culture, not as an alien people attempting to take it over or assume control of it.

 

The motives of the ADL were quite different.  The ADL is a socio-political instrument of the Jewish political movement, and its motivation and role in passage of the Act were to further their political ambitions in support of the movement to establish the Jewish state of Israel (Zionism).  As a Jewish organization, the ADL was in no position to sponsor the Act, and they sought a gentile to “front” for it.  Senator Kennedy was mindful of Jewish political power.  As a young senator early in his career, he sought to enhance his power by aligning with the wealthy ADL and the “Jewish lobby.”  He was quite willing to accommodate this group by serving as a Christian “front man” for the Act.  It was Kennedy’s religion as a Christian (not as a Catholic) that served the ADL’s interests.  The Act could have been sponsored by either a Protestant or a Catholic, and achieved passage.  The fact that Kennedy was Catholic and not Protestant was in fact a weakness, but the popularity of the Kennedy family name compensated for this.  Although Kennedy, as a named sponsor of the Act, bears some responsibility for its passage and for the resultant destruction of US culture that it caused, this was not his primary objective.  Kennedy’s role in passage of the Act was that of a pawn serving as a gentile front-man for the ADL.  With his connection to the Kennedy family, he served the ADL very well in achieving their objective of passage of the Act.  His primary motive, however, was advancement of his own personal political power, not of the political power of the Catholic Church (or of the Zionist movement).  The fact that mainstream US culture would be destroyed was not a concern to him – in fact, he adamantly insisted that this would not happen.

 

In serving as a sponsor for the Act, Kennedy was in fact a shill for the ADL.  More than any other single event, the Immigration Act of 1965 signaled the demise of traditional American culture.  The ADL’s role in passage of the Act was long-standing and with purpose (i.e., the nurturing of the modern state of Israel); Kennedy’s was not – it was opportunistic.  He was simply the Judas who betrayed his country for a few pieces of silver.  While Senator Kennedy, as a named sponsor of the Act, may claim responsibility for it, and while his name will forever be linked to this signal event in America’s demise, he was in fact not the prime mover, but simply a Quisling, a Benedict Arnold, who betrayed his country and culture for his own personal gain.  (The only essential difference between Benedict Arnold and Edward Kennedy is that, whereas Arnold’s cause failed and his treachery was therefore in vain, the goal of Kennedy’s treachery was achieved – he has lived to see the dissolution of the culture of the United States, primarily because of his Immigration Act of 1965.)  Senator Kennedy was recently (May 2008) diagnosed with brain cancer.  Had he died before sponsoring the Act would have made little difference, for two reasons: (1) the ADL would have found some other gentile to front for it; and (2) as Ariel Durant observed, “A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within.”  By even considering the Act, it is evident that US culture was well down its path to destruction, and positioning for its demise.  From this perspective, even the participation of the ADL per se is of little consequence: had the ADL not been the agent primarily responsible for passage of the Act, some other group or event would have served as pivotal agents in the US’ demise.  (This is admittedly a rather philosophical perspective – few of us can control our lives to a great degree, but achieve our life’s purpose or significance simply by responding to the larger environments and situations into which we are born or find ourselves.)

 

One might reasonably ask why and how Americans could have allowed mass immigration to overwhelm and displace / destroy their culture.  The story is a little long, but it is very interesting and illustrates well the importance of culture in determining the destiny of a nation, and so I will digress a little by discussing it in some detail.  It also points out some features of Israeli society that contrast significantly with present US culture, with respect to national survival.  Prior to the 1965 Act, US immigration had been limited to a few tens of thousands of people, mainly from Europe, for many decades.  The ADL and Senator Edward Kennedy convinced Americans that restricting immigration to Northern European cultures was morally wrong.  President John Kennedy had recently been assassinated, and many Americans mourned his loss.  He had written a book, Nation of Immigrants (1958), in which he praised immigration, and he had attempted to pass an immigration bill of his own, but failed.  Robert F. Kennedy, who had been Attorney General under President Kennedy, also pressed for passage of the new bill.  President Kennedy’s book was revised and enlarged in a 1964 edition – it is significant to note that the 1964 edition was copyrighted by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith.  Some people, such as North Carolina Senator Sam Irvin, asserted that the new bill would flood the country with immigrants from alien cultures and change the ethnic composition of the country.  Senator Kennedy countered that this would not happen, and implied that the opponents of the bill were racist bigots.  The bill passed, and the country began its passage to oblivion.

 

One of the key features of the new Act was the fact that it promoted “family reunification.”  This meant that foreigners having close relatives in the US were likely to be granted immigration visas.  Since Asians and Latinos have high birth rates, this feature resulted in a phenomenon called “chain migration,” in which large extended families were granted entry.  Birthright citizenship was granted to any child born in the US.  Relatives of such children, such as a mother or father, were also granted immigrant visas – such babies were called “anchor babies.”  (The January 3, 1999, issue of the St. Petersburg Times Parade Sunday Supplement contains a feature (cover) article entitled, “An American Experience: A Report for the Millennium,” by Ted Szulc.  It documents the story of how one Mexican crossed the border thirty-two years previously, concealed in the trunk of a car.  He evaded police for several years until his wife had two children, who were automatically granted birthright citizenship.  With US-citizen children, he and his wife then qualified for a Green Card (a work-permit visa), followed by US citizenship.  They went on to have ten children – all US citizens.  All stemming from one criminal invader of our country.  To further its program of selling of America to generate more wealth for the wealthy elite, the US government has rewarded this criminal alien invader with citizenship for himself and ten of his relatives.  The US Constitution requires the government to protect the country from invasion.  The government imprisons one percent of its adult male population, while rewarding alien invaders with citizenship.  The US government is guilty of high treason, and should be held accountable.  It rewards illegal aliens with birthright citizenship for their children, while it imprisons its own citizens at the highest rate in the world.  It no longer deserves the support of the governed.)

 

The Effects of Mass Immigration on US Society

 

Over the years, many Americans became alarmed at the flood of illegal aliens, and complained.  They complained mainly on the basis that the illegal aliens were depressing their wages and taking their jobs.  Few people complained that the masses of illegal immigrants were changing US culture, since this argument was immediately labeled as “racist” and “bigoted.”  Instead, the argument asserted by the government in favor of mass immigration was invariably that it was good for the economy, and it did not depress wages or employment for citizens.  The fact was and is that immigration was good for the economy.  It did depress wages and employment to some extent (mainly for lower-wage earners), but the overall effect of immigration is to increase gross domestic product – the country with 300 million people living in it produces much more goods and services than the country with only 200 million people, and the country’s wealthy elite are much better off.  Mass immigration was very good for business, and so the government, which now served the wealthy elite, was not about to put the brakes on it.  The fact that mass immigration was destroying the culture, the environment, and the quality of life for many US citizens was downplayed, suppressed, ignored, and contradicted by the US government and its economists.

 

As an example of “Hume’s Paradox” (that the masses have the power to overthrow their governments, but rarely do), US citizens were too timid to stand up for their culture.  They let the US government convince them, quite falsely it is now patently obvious, that it was in their economic interest to allow mass immigration.  They were dissuaded from standing up for their culture because (1) they were accused of bigotry in doing so and (2) they were promised an increased standard of living.  In the end, seduced by the false promise of continued material well-being, they lost both their culture and their standard of living.

 

Once there were massive numbers of legal aliens from different cultures in the US, it became very difficult to distinguish them from illegal aliens, and illegal immigration mushroomed.  It got so bad that in 1986 the US government passed the Immigration Reform Act granting amnesty to millions of illegal aliens.  The government claimed that this would not be done again.  It lied – granting of a path to citizenship to the 12-20 illegal aliens currently in the country has been promoted by the Bush administration and is being promoted by all three presidential contenders (John McCain, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama).

 

Machiavelli asserted that there are three main ways to administer a conquered people: (1) annihilate them (as the Romans did to the Carthaginians); (2) overwhelm them with large numbers of your own people (as the Communist Chinese are now doing in Tibet, the Israelis have been doing in Palestine, and the Europeans did to the native American Indians in North America); or (3) back local oligarchs (powerful families) and control the country through these surrogates.  None of these approaches was feasible for minorities to overcome the United States, since it had not been conquered and its mainstream culture was too strong.  The way that was adopted to conquer it, and, after four decades has proved to be highly successful, was to flood the country with immigrants from alien cultures.  This could not have been done, of course, had the country’s mainstream culture not already started to decline and was ripe for takeover.  As Ariel Durant once observed, “A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within.”

 

In his book, Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon (2006), Daniel Dennett relates the interesting story of an ant that laboriously climbs to the top of a blade of grass, falls off, and climbs back over and over again.  It turns out that this strange behavior is caused by a parasite, the lancet fluke (Dicrocelium dendriticum), that is striving, as Dennett relates, “to get itself into the stomach of a sheep or cow in order to complete its reproductive cycle.  This little brain worm is driving the ant into position to benefit its progeny, not the ant’s.  This is not an isolated phenomenon.  Similarly manipulative parasites infect fish, and mice, among other species.  These hitchhikers cause their hosts to behave in unlikely – even suicidal – ways, all for the benefit of the guest, not the host.”  Another parasite that causes similar behavior is the parasitic protozoan Toxoplasma gondii, which can cause rats and mice to be drawn to the scent of cats, rather than to be fearful of it.  The recent flooding of the US with immigrants is analogous to the phenomenon of these behavior-controlling parasites.  In similar fashion, Jewish culture has taken control of US culture, and America is now a client state of Israel.  Jewish interest groups (ADL, Zionists, the “Jewish Lobby,” the “Israeli Lobby”) have played the role of the lancet fluke to induce America to do its bidding.  Their primary tool was the Immigration Act of 1965 – which was passed by American lawmakers!  With a little help from a cultural parasite, America destroyed itself.

 

The founders and early leaders of the United States knew what was required to establish and maintain a country.  They restricted the vote to landowners and representation in favor of the white race.  When revolution was initiated by the secession of South Carolina in 1861, Abraham Lincoln crushed the effort with a bloody civil war – the bloodiest war in the history of the US (close to one million deaths).  In the latter part of the nineteenth century, the US government embarked on a genocidal war of extermination of the native American Indians.  It exterminated the buffalo, which was essential to the food and culture of the plains Indians.  It relocated Indians from their homelands to small, inhospitable reservations, some of which resembled moonscapes.  It sent smallpox-infested blankets to the cold, starving survivors.  When World War II broke out, they immediately placed all Japanese living in the US in concentration camps.

 

Jewish Capabilities in Statecraft

 

While America’s founders and early leaders knew what to do to create and maintain a nation, our current leaders have abandoned their principles, and the nation is disintegrating.  It is not that they do not know what is required, but that they are implementing the will of the planet’s controllers (wealthy elite).  The same is true for South Africa.  The founders and present-day leaders of the modern state of Israel, however, know exactly what to do to found a nation and maintain it, and they have the will, intelligence, and skills to do it.  This section describes some of the history and characteristics of Israeli statecraft, which is similar to that of America’s founders but stands in stark contrast to the policies and actions of US leaders of the past half-century and today.

 

The historical background of the eventual takeover of America by the ADL is fascinating.  The Ashkenazi (Eastern European) Jews who founded the modern state of Israel knew what was required and were prepared to do it, to establish their own country.  Prior to the founding of the modern state of Israel in 1948, the country was Palestine.  The founders of modern-day Israel had no racial or ancestral links to the Biblical Jews.  They were Khazars, or Ashkenazim, from Eastern Europe (Germany).  Following the breakup of the Ottoman Empire in the First World War, they saw an opportunity to obtain a country of their own, by taking over Palestine.  The Arabs were in total disarray, and allowed this to happen.  Although the Ashkenazim / Khazars had no historical or racial or ancestral links to Palestine (the Holy Land), they asserted that they had religious ties to the Biblical Jews, and on this basis deserved a homeland in the area then occupied by Palestine.  They were in fact not “returning” to the Holy Land, since their ancestors were never from it.  The Biblical Jews are not the ancestors of the Ashkenazi Jews.  The Ashkenazim had no moral or ancestral claim to the land of the Biblical Jews.  They had no more legitimate, moral or hereditary claim to Palestine than Sammy Davis, Jr.

 

The Ashkenazim sought and obtained the backing of British Foreign Secretary Balfour for their cause.  In 1917 Lord Balfour sent a letter to Lord Lionel Walter Rothschild in support of this idea – this letter is now referred to as the “Balfour Declaration.”  The letter did not suggest the taking over of Palestinian territory, but simply the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people within Palestine.  Once the Ashkenazim got a foothold in Palestine, however, they quickly took over.

 

The movement of the Ashkenazim to take over Palestine is called Zionism.  It is a political movement, disguised as a religious one.  Religion is the handmaiden of government, and history has shown how it can be a very effective tool in accomplishing political goals.  The Ashkenazi Jews had no ancestral link to the Biblical Jews, but they made very effective use of religion to imply that they had a rightful political claim to the Holy Land.  In fact, there was no basis to their claim – moral, ancestral, historical, legitimate or other.  Neither they nor their ancestors were from that land, which had been occupied by Palestine for two millennia.  They had and have no moral right to Palestine, and the country, Israel, that they founded has no moral right to exist – the modern state of Israel was founded on sham and deception – but they backed up their unfounded claim with force.  They now have a legal right to it – and a legal right to exist – since they, with the support of the United States, can enforce it. 

 

After the Second World War, the Ashkenazim had the support of Britain to migrate to Palestine and set up homelands.  Alarmed at what was happening, the Arab nations in the area attacked the Jewish settlements.  To the Arabs’ surprise and great misfortune, the Jews repelled the attack, defeated the Arabs, and promptly laid claim to Palestine as their own country.  As they say, “the rest is history.”  Ever since then, the Palestinians and other Arabs have been whining (whinging or whingeing, to my British readers) about this takeover.  This is a waste of time.  Every country in the world was established by conquest, and, under international law, the “rightful” owners are those who are strong enough and clever enough to defend their claim.  This is what Britain did in North America, it is what the United States later did, and it is what all nations do.  The Ashkenazim had and have no moral right whatsoever to move in and take over Palestine.  They did it, and they are able to defend it, and that is that – they have thereby established a legal right to it.

 

In their conquest and subsequent administration of Palestine, the Ashkenazim followed Machiavelli’s dictums to the letter.  Machiavelli identified three means of administering a conquered land: (1) kill everyone; (2) set up puppet local administrators (such as powerful families or warlords), and tell them that you will support them as long as they cooperate with your goals (e.g., in Iraq, give us access to oil); or (3) overwhelm the land with your own people, to outnumber the original inhabitants.  The Israelis have applied the third means of assuring their control over Palestine.  They flooded the new state of Israel with a massive influx of Eastern European Jews.  Here follows a quote from Col. Thomas Hammes’ The Sling and the Stone (2006):

 

“As early as 1991, even before the Oslo accords were signed, the Likud Party (led by Netanyahu and Sharon) worked to defeat any possible compromise with the Palestinians in the occupied territories.  One of their key tools was encouraging the immigration of a million Soviet Jews.  With the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Soviet Jews were eager to emigrate to the West.  The Israeli government did its best to encourage these people to come to Israel.  In doing so, they achieved two goals.  First, they reversed the population trend that saw Palestinian [Mizrahi] and Sephardic (non-European [Iberian]) Jews growing rapidly in proportion to the Ashkenazim – Jews of European [Germanic] descent.  Second, they provided the people needed to populate the West Bank settlements the Likud Party was rapidly building.”

 

As a final indignity to the Palestinians, the Israelis (Golda Meir) asserted that they don’t even exist as a people.  If they ever did, they have now simply been erased, extinguished, eradicated, exterminated from history – from this viewpoint, the “Palestinian people” is nothing more than a figment of the past, a bad dream, and no longer part of reality.  (Actually, Mrs. Meir was essentially correct in her characterization.  The people who occupied what is now Israel were not a unified ethnic group, but a loose collection of Semites (Jews, Arabs, Druze), most of whom would have preferred to remain part of Syria or Lebanon.  Referring to them as “a people” at that time is rather a stretch of the imagination.  While Palestine was certainly a recognized place, it was hardly a well defined “people.”  On the other hand, whether they were or were not or are or are not a people is irrelevant.  No group of people, whether considered “a people” or not, has any right of self-determination, or any right to anything, except as they establish it and maintain it by force.)

 

A key ingredient in the Ashkenazim takeover of Palestine was support from the US, the new world power after the Second World War.  Jewish interests (such as the ADL) now control the US.  The US has become a client state of Israel.  The small state of Israel, through the Jewish diaspora in the United States, now asserts essentially complete control of the US.  The major event in establishing this control was passage of the Immigration Act of 1965 and the subsequent flooding of the US with alien cultures.  Another significant event was the takeover of the US media by Jewish interests.  Through this control, much further progress was made in destroying Teutonic culture in the US (through films that promote multiculturalism, inclusiveness, diversity, pluralism, equality, tolerance, openness, permissiveness, political correctness and intermixing of all cultures and ethnic groups except Jews – see the cover of the March 22, 2008, issue of Vogue magazine for a current example (Lebron James and Gisele Bundchen in a pose suggestive of King Kong and Fay Wray)).

 

How this happened is clear.  Why it happened is also clear.  America could not have been taken over by Jewish culture had its own culture not weakened so that it no longer strove to defend itself and survive.  Jewish culture defends and protects itself.  It has survived for thousands of years, and it will continue to survive.  America was not destroyed by the Jews or the Catholics, or by any other group.  Recall Ariel Durant’s observation, “A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within.”  American culture chose not to defend itself.  Through neglect, it lost its will for self-preservation.  It forgot that the fundamental responsibility of any country is to defend itself.  Culture is the spirit of a country.  The culture that founded and maintained the US is no more.  The US no longer has a spirit that strives to survive.  America’s spirit is gone, and the country will not last.

 

In their quest to destroy US mainstream culture, the ADL allied with other minority groups, such as Catholics and blacks.  The ADL and Senator Kennedy were very successful in initiating the process that culminated in the fractionation of the United States.  Recently, they have been joined in the quest to destroy traditional American culture by Hispanics and Asians, represented by immigration proponents such as LULAC, MALDEF, ACLU, various lawyer advocacy groups and the Ford Foundation – see William Hawkins’ book Importing Revolution: Open Borders and the Radical Agenda (1994) for more on this.  America is now being flooded with immigrants from every corner of the world.  This process of destruction of US Northern European culture is about complete.  It appears that when a culture reaches the point at which 25 percent is not of the mainstream culture, it is ripe for disintegration.  The US has reached that point – the tipping point – and is now living on borrowed time.

 

For more discussion of the destruction of US mainstream culture by Jewish culture, see Kevin MacDonalds’ The Culture of Critique (1998, 2002), Separation and Its Discontents (2004) and A People That Shall Dwell Alone (2002).  For more on the takeover of Palestine by Israel, see David Icke’s Tales from the Time Loop (2003) or The David Icke Guide to the Global Conspiracy (2007); David Fromkin’s A Peace to End All Peace (1989); John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt’s The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy (2007); James Petras’ The Power of Israel in the United States (2006) and Rulers and Ruled in the US Empire (2007); Ilan Pappe’s The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine (2006); Michael Neumann’s The Case Against Israel (2005); Alan Dershowitz’ The Case for Israel (2003); and Jimmy Carter’s Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid (2006).  Carter and Dershowitz accept, imply, or promote the notion that Israel has some sort of “moral right” to exist, and to remain the occupier of Palestine.  They assert that since the Ashkenazim call themselves Jews and a band of Jews once occupied land in the Holy Land 2500 years ago, they have a greater moral right to the land than the Palestinians who occupied it prior to 1948.  The “starting point” for their arguments is essentially 1948.  No country has any moral right to exist, or to take over another country.  Countries are not people – they are simply social contracts – figments of imagination, ideas, set to paper.  Countries exist only so long as the social contract establishing them remains in force, they retain a will to survive, and they have the strength and cunning to accomplish and maintain the embodiment of that desire.  A “right” is nothing more than a legal privilege granted by those in authority.  As long as Israel retains its power, or is protected by the US or the UN, it has a “right” to exist.  Palestine does not have a “right” to exist, since no one is willing and able to actualize their desire to exist.  The American Indians no longer had a right to North America, once the United States had the will and the capacity to take it from them.  The US of today may possess some vague sense of desire to continue, but it in fact has lost its will to survive, and it will disappear quickly.  Barring nuclear annihilation by its Moslem neighbors, Israel will continue to exist, because it has the will and the means to survive.

 

On 14 May 2008 US President George Bush delivered a speech in Israel, in celebration and praise of the sixtieth anniversary of “Israeli Independence.”  In this encomium, he made no mention of the fact that the founders of the modern state of Israel stole their land from the previous residents (“Palestinians”), and accomplished their independence as much from deception, assassination and terrorism as by formal military combat on the field of battle.  Bush, like Jimmy Carter, appears to take justification for the existence of Israel for granted, never mentioning that all Israeli land was taken, just a few years ago, from the Palestinians.  Bush asserts that he wants to provide land for the Palestinians.  If he really believed this, why not simply revert to the borders of 1947?  (After giving this speech, which was surely an affront to the Arabs, Bush proceeded to Saudi Arabia to ask for an increase in oil production (to help moderate the price).  As an accommodation, despite the affront, the Saudis graciously agreed to an increase of 300,000 barrels per day.  Bush complains that the price of oil is going through the roof because global production is “flat.”  Of course it’s flat – Hubbert’s Peak is passing!  Just wait till we start sliding down the back side of Hubbert’s Curve – “you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!”)

 

In the current presidential race, the candidates fall all over themselves in declaring their support for the Jewish state of Israel.  Why do they support this, and not the Palestine that preceded it?  They declare that Iran shall not be permitted to develop or obtain nuclear weapons, when the State of Israel has one or more nuclear warheads targeted on every Arab capital.

 

The “Jewish Lobby”; The Israeli Lobby; Zionism; Machiavelli

 

In the preceding paragraphs (and in some to follow), I occasionally use the general term “Jews,” and it may not be clear exactly what group of people I am referring to in every case.  “The Jews” are frequently a collective scapegoat, but they are a diverse group, and I wish to make sure that it is clear to whom I am referring.  The term “Jew” refers to religious or ethnic groups, not to a racial group – Jews may come from any racial group.  As a large group of people, Jews have many interests – some are in favor of Zionism, some against it; some support the ADL’s program, and others do not.  In general, perhaps it would be preferable to use the term “Jews” instead of “the Jews,” since the policies and actions of specific groups of Jews certainly does not reflect the policies and actions of all Jews.

 

In the discussion of the takeover of Palestine and US culture by “the Jews” or “Jewish interests,” I am referring generally to the Ashkenazim (the Eastern European Jews who founded modern Israel), but more specifically, I am referring to what is now called the “Israel Lobby” or the “Jewish Lobby” in the United States, or “Zionists.”  The Ashkenazim are from the Caucasus region (the Khazar Empire, or Khazaria – located in what is now southern Russia; the term “Ashkenaz” is the medieval Hebrew name for the region which is now Germany and bordering German-speaking areas.) and later from Eastern Europe.  As a people, they converted to Judaism about a thousand years ago; they are not descended from the Biblical Jews.  They are Caucasian / Hungarian / Magyar / Russian / Hun / Teutonic / Finnish / Ugrian / Turkic in origin, not Semitic (North African / Middle Eastern).  The very interesting thing that many people do not realize is that when these people, the Ashkenazim, expropriated the Holy Land from the previous residents, they expropriated it from all of the previous residents, including the descendents of the Biblical Jews who inhabited the area.  These latter people (Palestinian Jews, the descendents of the Biblical Jews) are Semites (just as are the Arabs); the Ashkenazim are not.  When the Ashkenazim took over Palestine in 1948, they also assumed control of the Semitic Jews who inhabited the area – in essence, the Ashkenazim “hijacked” Judaism from the Biblical Jews.  It is the Ashkenazim who founded modern Israel and remain in firm control of it – not “Jews” in general.  The Ashkenazim consider themselves distinct from the Palestinian and Sephardic Jews.  As noted above, they flooded Israel with a million of their fellow Ashkenazim (from all over, but mainly from Eastern Europe / Russia), to strengthen their control and dilute the control of all other native Palestinian groups, including Palestinian and Sephardic Jews, Palestinian Arabs, Muslims, Druze and Christians.

 

To make my position perfectly clear, I do not see that any group of people has any moral right to possess anything.  It does not matter whether their descendents “got there first,” or whether their ancestors fought and killed and died to obtain a homeland, or whether they are “making better use of” the land, or whether they “deserve” it more because they have “better” governance, or whether their version of God gave it to them.  I do not believe that Israelis have any greater claim to the Holy Land than the Palestinians – neither has any more right to it than I do.  All that matters from a practical viewpoint is the current legal (political) right to the land – who lays claim to it and has the power to enforce their claim.  From this viewpoint, it may be asked why I spend time discussing the history of the Jews in dispossessing the former residents of Palestine, taking over American culture, promoting passage of the Immigration Act of 1965, and founding the modern state of Israel.  The reason is that the Jews (more specifically, certain groups of Jews, such as the Ashkenazim, the Zionists, and the “Jewish Lobby” (or “Israeli Lobby”)) exemplify very well certain aspects of statecraft that have much to do with the future course of America and the planet.  Briefly, they follow the principles of Machiavelli, and they are accomplishing their political objectives.  The US people once did, but no longer do, and they have lost their country.

 

The Ashkenazim are not Semites, and so it is amusing to hear them refer to negative remarks about their actions or programs (and the people who make them) as “anti-Semitic.”   They identify with the Holy-Land (Palestinian, Semitic, Biblical-descendent) Jews when it is in their interest (i.e., when making claim to the Holy Land), but they are not ancestrally related to them and they consider themselves quite distinct from them and superior to them (e.g., when it comes to allocating housing in Israel).

 

It is also interesting that, as part of their program to arrogate Palestine and establish full control of it, per Machiavelli they overwhelmed the country with their fellow Ashkenazim, including the immigration of a million Jews from Russia.  For decades, Biblical scholars have discussed the fact that Biblical prophecy predicts that in the “last days” Israel would be conquered by people from the “uttermost north,” which is interpreted by many to refer to Russia.  From this perspective, when the Ashkenazim flooded Israel with one million Russian Jews, they were fulfilling Biblical prophecy (see Hal Lindsay’s (with C. C. Carlson) The Late Great Planet Earth (1970) for more on this).

 

In view of this history, while it may be technically correct to assert that the US and Palestine were taken over by “the Jews,” it is misleading.  It would be more informative (precise) to say that they were taken over by the Ashkenazim – by Eastern Europeans / Russians / Caucasians / Germans, not by Semites or descendents of Biblical Jews, as the ambiguous term “the Jews” might imply.  The Ashkenazim used the religion of Judaism as a tool for founding the modern state of Israel.  (This ploy – using religion to further political purposes, is certainly not unique to the Ashkenazim.  Religion has served as the handmaiden of politics since the dawn of civilization.)

 

Because the Jewish Lobby is having a profound effect on US culture and political life, the literature on this topic is increasing.  Several recent books on the subject are Michael Neumann’s The Case Against Israel (2005); John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt’s The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy (2007); James Petras’ The Power of Israel in the United States (2006) and Rulers and Ruled in the US Empire (2007); Alan Dershowitz’ The Case for Israel (2003); and Ilan Pappe’s The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine (2006).

 

Some excerpts from some of the references listed above are presented in the Appendices.  They discuss the issue of the right of Israel to Palestine, and Israel’s ability to conquer and retain that land.  These excerpts reveal how well the Ashkenazim have applied Machiavelli’s principles of conquest and administration to achieve their objective of founding and maintaining the modern state of Israel.  (In view of their deftness in politics, the Jews are one of the few groups capable of establishing and maintaining a planetary government, although it appears that they have little interest in this larger aim – their focus appears to be simply the founding and maintenance of a small state (Israel).)

 

I am in accord with Neumann’s assertion that no “people” has any “right” of self-determination, or right to a homeland, or any other “natural” right – rights are simply privileges extended by those in power.  The people of the southern United States claimed to have such a right, and seceded from the Union – President Lincoln put a stop to that.  The people of Kosovo recently claimed such a right, and it was supported by those in power, so they in fact had it.  The Israelis and the Palestinians both claim this right, and the Israelis are able to establish it and the Palestinians are not.  Even defining what constitute a “people” is problematic.  You often hear reference to the “Iraqi people.”  There is no “Iraqi people” – just major ethnic groups such as the Kurds, the Sunnis and the Shiites.  Golda Meir asserted that the Palestinians were not a people.  While traveling in 1867 in the area that is now occupied by Israel, Mark Twain found the area essentially void of people.

 

The point to the above is that the Ashkenazim control modern Israel not because they have any moral right to it, or possess any right of self-determination.  They do not, and “the Palestinians” do not.  The Ashkenazim / Israelis control it and have a right to it because they claim that right and are able to enforce it.  That is the only reason.

 

The preceding books document how well the Ashkenazim have followed Machiavelli’s dictums in establishing and maintaining control of Palestine.  Like the Europeans who conquered America and decimated its former inhabitants, they did what they had to do, and they succeeded.  At the present time, it would appear that the Ashkenazim are the only group that is willing and able to do what is necessary to set up and maintain a viable system of planetary management.  In view of their ancestry (European / Khazarian / Ashkenazi / Caucasian / Russian / German), they would come by this leadership role naturally.

 

Alan Dershowitz’ book, The Case for Israel, is essentially an apologia.  As did Jimmy Carter in his book, Peace Not Apartheid (2006), he adopts the starting point of his arguments in support of the right of Israel to occupy Palestine as the founding of the modern state of Israel in 1948, and he assumes that Israel has some sort of moral “right” to exist and to occupy this land.  He promotes the argument that since a band of Biblical Jews occupied Palestine a couple of thousand years ago and the Ashkenazim are of the same religion, they therefore have a “right” to the area.  He also asserts that since the modern Israelis have adopted democracy and rule of law and are running an efficient state, they deserve the area more than the Arabs.  He asserts the right of self-determination: “Israel is a state comprising primarily refugees and their descendents exercising their right of self-determination.  Beginning in the 1880s, the Jews who moved to what is now Israel were refugees escaping the oppressive anti-Semitism of colonial Europe and the Muslim states of the Middle East and North Africa. Unlike colonial settlers serving the expansionist commercial and military goals of imperial nations such as Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, and Spain, the Jewish refugees were escaping from the countries that had oppressed them for centuries. These Jewish refugees were far more comparable to the American colonists who had left England because of religious oppression (or the Europeans who later immigrated to America) than they were to eighteenth- and nineteenth-century English imperialists who colonized India, the French settlers who colonized North Africa, and the Dutch expansionists who colonized Indonesia.”  As I have remarked before, a “right” is simply a privilege granted by those in power – it exists only as long as it is enforced by the granting power.  Israel has a right to Palestine because it took it from the Palestinians and has the power to keep it, just as the Europeans took America from the Indians.  Henry Ford once said, “Never complain, never explain.”  Lee Iacocca added, “Never apologize.”  The Ashkenazim who conquered the land that is now Israel and are holding it do not apologize.  They do what is required to conquer a land and keep it.  They will endure.

 

Background on the history of the Ashkenazim is presented in a number of sources, such as David Icke’s Tales from the Time Loop (2003) and The David Icke Guide to the Global Conspiracy (2007), and David Livingstone’s Terrorism and the Illuminati (2007).  Livingstone’s book includes some discussion of the geographic source of the Ashkenazim.  An excerpt on this topic is presented in the Appendices.

 

Decline in US Culture

 

The preceding paragraphs describe the fractionation of US culture.  Fractionation alone is sufficient to destroy a nation (e.g., the breakup of Yugoslavia, the USSR, Ireland and the near-breakup of Canada).  What is just as significant, however, is a weakening of the core culture to the point where it no longer has the will to preserve itself, to survive.  For a number of reasons (including mass immigration from alien cultures over a short period of time (so that little assimilation took place), a long period of peace, much wealth) traditional US culture has lost the will to survive.  It is no longer willing to make the hard choices necessary to preserve a country and culture.

 

Apart from having lost the will to survive, US traditional culture has lost many of the attributes necessary for a culture to survive.  Many of the recent immigrants are here simply “for the money.”  They have no allegiance to the principles of America’s founders, or to Teutonic culture.  Many of them, in fact, are inimical to America’s culture.

 

Just because a group of people has a desire to exist as a defined group (nation, people, ethnic group) does not mean that it will.  It needs many things to survive.  The main ingredients, of course, are desire, will and ability.  These are necessary, but not sufficient.  Jared Diamond’s books Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (1997) and Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (2005) explore the many reasons for the rise and fall of civilizations and nations.  Diamond focuses mainly on physical reasons, such as the environment.  But other, intangible, reasons are just as important.  These include discipline, loyalty, duty, intelligence, creativity, cunning and hard work (action).  In recent years, American culture has become soft, undisciplined.  Many new immigrants have no loyalty to US mainstream culture, and many native citizens wonder why they should by sympathetic to new immigrants who do not share their core values, are destroying their environment, are crowding them out of their own country, and are diminishing their quality of life.

 

For a number of reasons, America has lost its core culture.  The main reason for this is mass immigration over a short time from alien cultures.  But many years of peace and luxury have also taken their toll.  An acquaintance of mine who owns a landscaping firm tells me that the reason that illegal aliens get work is that today’s young Americans are simply not willing to work.

 

A number of books have been written on the subject of the decline of American culture.  Two of the best are Georgie Anne Geyer’s Americans No More (1996) and Robert Bork’s Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline (1996).  Other books on this topic include Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.’s The Disuniting of America: Reflections on a Multicultural Society (1991) and John Strausbaugh’s Sissy Nation: How America Became a Culture of Wimps & Stoopits (2008).

 

The issue of people becoming soft from the good life is long standing.  In this regard, it is of interest to recall the advice of Artembares to Cyrus, the king of Persia.  (The following excerpt is from A Study of History by Arnold J. Toynbee, Abridgement of Volumes I-VI by D. C. Sommervell, Oxford University Press, 1946 / 1974, pp. 85-86.  See also Herodotus: The Histories, Penguin Classics, Penguin Books, 1954, 1972, p. 543.)  The Advice of Artembares.  Herodotus has a story which is very much to the point in this context. A certain Artembares and his friends came to Cyrus with the following suggestion: ' "Now that Zeus has put down Astyages from his seat and has given the dominion to the Persians as a nation and to you, Sire, as an individual, why should we not emigrate from the confined and rocky territory which we at present possess, and occupy a better? There are many near at hand and many more at a distance, of which we have only to take our choice in order to make a greater impression on the world than we make as it is. This is a natural policy for an imperial people, and we shall never have a finer opportunity of realizing it than now, when our empire is established over vast populations and over the entire continent of Asia."  'Cyrus, who had listened and had not been impressed, told his petitioners to do as they wished, but he qualified his advice by telling them in the same breath to prepare their minds for exchanging positions with their present subjects. Soft countries, he informed them, invariably breed soft men.’  Herodotus, Book IX, chapter 121-122."

 

Loss of Spirituality and Manifest Destiny

 

The Founders’ Principles and Goals

 

The founders of the United States were highly spiritual men.  By and large, they were Deists.  It is misleading, even incorrect, to characterize the founding fathers as Christians (although they were), and the new nation as a Christian nation.  The founders were Masons.  Their religion was Christianity, but their spiritual beliefs were not characterized by mainstream Christianity.  They had little use for the “magic” and “miracles” of Christian myth.  Thomas Jefferson wrote a version of the New Testament (in four languages), The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth (1819), in which he stripped out all of the mythology, such as the immaculate conception, virgin birth, vicarious atonement and resurrection, and concentrated on the moral principles that Jesus taught and demonstrated in his life.  This book is called the Jefferson Bible, and a copy of it is presented to every new member of the US Congress.

 

The leaders of the early US had strong feelings and convictions about their undertaking.  They did not grant citizenship or representation to just anyone.  As the basis for representation in Congress, non-whites were given three-fifths the representation of whites.  The US president had to be native-born.  The country was founded as a republic (voters elect representatives who make decisions), not a democracy (voters make decisions directly).

 

Gradually, a concept of “Manifest Destiny” evolved, in which the country’s leaders and citizens believed that the new nation had been granted a divine right to control the US land area “from sea to shining sea.”  The country’s Great Seal includes the slogans, Annuit Coeptis (He Favors Our Undertakings) and Novus Ordo Seclorum (A New Order of the Ages).  When the Southern states attempted to secede from the Union, they were brutally crushed by President Abraham Lincoln in a bloody civil war (The War Between the States).  The Monroe Doctrine asserted that the US had dominion over the entire Western Hemisphere.  The US purchased the Louisiana Territory from France (after France saw that it would be impossible to defend), and annexed vast regions of Mexico (the Mexican-American War of 1846-48).  The American Indians were decimated and their lands confiscated.

 

The dominant culture of the United States was Northern European.  In his book, Peaceful Invasions (1992), Leon Bouvier summarizes its view at the beginning of the twentieth century.  “At the beginning of the twentieth century, the Anglo-American majority favored the total assimilation of the new European groups into an Anglo-dominated society.  (It was taken for granted – indeed, it was ordered – that Mexicans, Asians, and Blacks would remain culturally separate.)  Cultural pluralism and even the melting pot were adamantly opposed.  Theodore Roosevelt felt nothing but disdain for the hyphenated American and Woodrow Wilson declared that: ‘Any man who thinks of himself as belonging to a particular national group in America has not yet become an American’.”

 

Cultural and Political Change in America; Comparison to Israel and South Africa

 

After decades of being taught that any one culture is just as good as another, Americans have come to believe this.  They have been taught that one person, family, tribe or race is no better than any other.  Why, then, should one stand up for this culture or country?  Americans have lost their self-esteem, sense of purpose and sense of destiny.  They have lost pride in the principles, values and accomplishments of their ancestors; the only pride that remains is false, hollow, jingoistic pride.  They have lost faith in their leaders, who have abandoned them in favor of the wealthy elite.  They see that the US government is no longer “of, by, and for the people,” but now functions mainly for the wealthy elite.  Through their policies of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders, the country’s leaders have severely diminished the quality of life for the US middle class.  The government has emasculated its middle class – it has diminishing freedom, and is a slave to the economy and to debt.  The US middle class is filled with fear and doubt about the future.  It has lost its confidence and spirit.

 

It is instructive to compare the situation of present-day America with respect to sense of purpose and destiny to the experiences of two other recent countries – Israel and South Africa.  Our children are taught that the annihilation of the Indians was a moral disgrace, and that Andrew Jackson was a brutal promoter of genocide.  Israeli children are taught of the endless genocides committed by their ancestors in the Old Testament (Torah) as being religious duties demanded by God.  Do you think that Israeli children of today are taught that the takeover and ethnic cleansing of Palestine by their grandparents, the Ashkenazim, was a shameful, moral sin?  Or, quite the contrary, that it is their God-given moral right and destiny to possess the Holy Land?  Our children are taught that the enslavement of Africans by our ancestors was a moral sin.  Our forebears, who brought slavery to the New World, were in fact far more moral than we of today.  Slavery is promoted and sustained by economics, not by morality – many of the country’s founders were aware of the moral toll that slavery takes on the owners, and freed their slaves (but only after they were wealthy and old).  Quite independently of these acts of individual morality, however, slavery died as a large-scale system because the industrial revolution made it economically unattractive.  The moral crusades of people like William Wilberforce could only achieve fruition when the economic conditions were “right.” Slavery still thrives in poor places in Africa, and it will return to the planet when fossil fuels disappear.  And, to the dismay of some, it will largely be race-based – the Romans found that it is not practical to have slaves of the same race as the masters.

 

The following excerpt from Milton Meltzer’s Slavery: A World History (1993) describes the economic basis for slavery in further detail.

 

“C.L.R. James, in his history of the San Domingo Revolution, asserts that the truth about British abolition was long obscured by scholars pandering to national vanity. Britain was moved less by idealism than by national self-interest, he says. Like James, historian Eric Williams, of Trinidad, holds that Prime Minister William Pitt wanted to abolish the slave trade as a means of ruining the prosperity of San Domingo, the French sugar colony so dependent for labor upon British slave traders. Britain could then recapture the European market with the help of sugar from India. Despite the fact that English idealists such as William Wilberforce and Thomas Clarkson attacked the slave trade on the basis of inhumanity, behind them were merchants and manufacturers who no longer cared what happened to the planters of the West Indies and North America. They had poured the profits of the slave trade into new industries: their economic needs had changed. They were not concerned about finding African slaves because they wanted labor for their factories at home and had to find it inside Great Britain.

 

“So although colonial planters feared that abolition would ruin them, the new industrial leaders of England didn't care. They and their politicians were ready to listen when the abolitionists massed the popular voice in condemnation of the slave trade. If the political and industrial leaders could suppress the trade, it would allow a broader and more legitimate commerce to develop between Europe and Africa, providing markets for England's young industries. An international movement against the trade had already begun with Danish action in 1804. The Americans made it illegal in 1808, the Dutch in 1814, and the French in 1815. Almost all the maritime powers moved into line eventually, so that by 1842 the Atlantic slave trade was legally dead.

 

Legally dead. Good had triumphed over evil with a major assist from business and government, but it was a paper victory….”

 

The Ashkenazim know how to conquer a country and keep it.  They have read their Machiavelli well.  In 1948 they launched an intensive program of ethnic cleansing to remove Palestinians from what had been their country.  After winning the war against the Arabs in 1948, they adopted a policy of flooding their newly conquered land (now Israel, no longer Palestine) with Jews from around the world – one of Machiavelli’s three ways of keeping and administering a conquered territory.  (More specifically, they flooded the country with one million European Jews from Russia, to overwhelm not just the Palestinian Arabs, but the Palestinian Jews as well.)  They set up concentration camps into which the former owners of the land – the Palestinians – were herded, just as the United States set up “reservations” for the Indians whom they had dispossessed of their land.  The Americans set up reservations for the Indians in the 1800s, and the Askhenazim set up reservations for the dispossessed Palestinians in the mid-1900s.

 

The successes of the US and the Israelis in conquering a land and assuming control of it is in stark contrast to the experience of the South Africans.  White settlers (mainly Dutch and British) conquered what is now South Africa several hundred years ago.  With the explosive growth of the black population in the 1900s, the South Africans attempted to set up “homelands” for the blacks in their conquered territory, but they failed.  The principal reason for this failure was timing – they tried to do this in the late 1900s, when the world had become too squeamish about this sort of thing.  The last country to set up and maintain concentration camps and a system of apartheid was and is Israel, and it is able to do so only because it has the full support of the United States (in the US view, only whites can be racist – it had a problem with South African whites over blacks, but not with European Ashkenazim or Jewish Semites over Arab Semites).  The blacks of South Africa garnered world opinion against this, and it became impossible to implement.  Unlike the Israelis, who obtained the full support of the US for their program of apartheid, the South Africans failed to garner support from any prominent world power for their program of apartheid, and it collapsed.  Their failure is really rather remarkable, inasmuch as the Dutch conquered South Africa several hundred years ago, whereas the Israelis were successful in implementing such a system at about the same time (the mid-1900s) in a land that they had just conquered (in 1948).  The South Africans simply made their move too late and, unlike the Israelis, they did not develop and execute an effective plan for doing so (e.g., assumption of control of US culture).  The Ashkenazim conquered Palestine in 1948 and promptly set about moving the Palestinians to the occupied territories of West Bank and Gaza.  They elicited US support, gained via a takeover of US culture (accomplished through the Immigration Act of 1965).  The South Africans were as disorganized as the Arabs, and so they lost the country that they had conquered and lived in for four hundred years.  If you want to hold onto your country, you had better read Machiavelli and see how to do it.  The importance of having a powerful ally, such as the US, cannot be underestimated.  Many nations in Africa maintain racist societies today (e.g., Malawi, Zimbabwe, Liberia) with the blessing of the US (South Africa notably not included, since in US eyes only whites can be racist – it is not terribly concerned when blacks enslave blacks or Semites enslave Semites).

 

American schoolchildren are taught that we should apologize for slaughtering the Indians and taking their land and putting them on reservations.  They are taught that we should apologize to current-day blacks for our ancestors’ enslaving their African ancestors.  Do you think that Israeli schoolchildren are told that they should apologize for stealing the Palestinians’ land and herding them into reservations (Gaza and the West Bank), and return the Holy Land to them?  No way!  They are taught that the Holy Land is their rightful homeland.  They are taught that it is their manifest destiny to own Israel, just as American schoolchildren were taught in the nineteenth century that it was their manifest destiny to own America.  The Ashkenazim taught that their religion gives them a right to the land.  Although they had no ancestral or historical links to the Biblical Jews of the Holy Land, they have created a myth that they are the rightful descendents.  They have commingled the political movement of Zionism (to create Israel out of Palestine) with the religion of Judaism.  They have created and nurtured the legend of the Jewish Holocaust.  They have committed acts of terrorism to draw attention to their cause (I once lived on Hassan Sabry Street in Zamalek, the site of one such action).  They have assassinated their enemies around the world.  They have managed the press and other media so that criticism of Israel is equated to anti-Semitism, to racism, to bigotry.  They have corrupted US culture, through decades of films, books and magazines that depict a dissolute US white culture.  Through a century of diligent planning and action, they have taken over the United States and made it a client state of Israel.  They have worked hard to conquer Palestine and keep it.  They will succeed, because they have the will and because they are doing what has to be done.  They are taking steps to preserve their culture, and to retain possession of Palestine.  They will endure.  The white South Africans and the white Americans will not.

 

The Israelis, Ashkenazim and Jews of today promote and practice blatant racism – but only for themselves.  They discourage Jews from intermarrying with nonJews (when I use “they” here, obviously I am not referring to any or every single individual of the groups, but to typical group characteristics).  They restrict citizenship in Israel to Jews.  They took over Palestine and adamantly refuse to give it up.  They flooded the conquered Palestinian territory with Jews from around the world.  They herded Palestinians into concentration camps and set up a rigid system of apartheid.  The world calls on them to desist, but they thumb their nose at the rest of the world.  They waged a century-long campaign to take over American culture (principal tool: assert that restrictive immigration practices are racist – for the US, not for Israel!) and make America their client state, to funnel massive wealth to their new country and to protect them from their much larger and wealthier adversaries.  They have commingled and coalesced the political movement of Zionism with the religion of Judaism, to make it difficult for critics to protest their political ambitions and actions without seeming to attack the Judaic religion.  They charge critics of Israel with being racist (anti-Semitic).  They endlessly promote their losses in World War II as a major world genocide (the Jewish “Holocaust”).  How do they get by with this?  Through belief in their cause – that it is ordained (or, at least, blessed) by God.  Through diligence and hard work.  Through following the dictums of Machiavelli.  They set their objectives, they planned their program, they worked hard and long, and they achieved their objectives.  They have done all of the things listed in the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion forgery, and no one can stop them.

 

The Afrikaners did and tried to do some of these same things.  They conquered (along with the British) southern Africa several hundred years ago, immigrated in large numbers, and for a time took control of the territory.  For a while, the Afrikaners followed Machiavelli’s principles (and scriptures of the Bible, which are very big on genocidal wars of conquest), but then they abandoned them.  They set up a system of apartheid and tried to maintain it.  They moved to restrict the native Africans to homelands.  When today’s multicultural world criticized them as being racist and embargoed them, however, they lost their will, abandoned their effort, and promptly lost their country.  What did the Israelis have that the South Africans lacked?  How can the Israelis get by with blatant racism and the South Africans could not?  Why was the United States successful in destroying Indian culture, annihilating the Indian race, rounding up the few survivors into concentration camps (“reservations”) and enslaving millions of blacks, when the South Africans were unsuccessful in accomplishing similar (or even less extreme) things, even on a smaller scale?  The difference is really very simple.  The US and the Israelis had a belief in a “manifest destiny.”  They had faith in their cause.  They believed that God was on their side.  They believed their Bible, and made very effective use of religion as a political tool.  The South Africans were and are religious, but somewhere along the way they lost the belief that they were chosen by God to rule.  They came to believe that the blacks, not they, were entitled to control South Africa.  Like Peter on the Sea of Galilee, they lost faith and they lost their cause.

 

In Plato’s time, there was no distinction between the state and religion.  Since that time, religion has served mainly as the handmaiden of the state – to justify the state (e.g., divine right of kings), to justify its actions, and to keep the people under control.  World empires, such as the British, the French, and the Spanish used religion to justify their global conquests.  In Biblical times, the Jews used religion to justify their takeover of the Holy Land and genocide of the previous residents.  Although very religious, white South Africans did not make effective use of their religion in furthering their cause of retaining the Republic of South Africa under their control.

 

In his Apocalypse (1931), D. H. Lawrence wrote, “Pure Christianity anyhow cannot fit a nation, or society at large.  The Great War made it obvious.  It can only fit individuals.  The collective whole must have some other inspiration.”  It is because the tenets of Christianity and some other religions apply only to individuals and not to states that most states insist on separation of church and state.  The white South Africans of the twentieth century forgot this, and promptly lost the country that their forebears bequeathed to them.  The Israelis do not have a problem with this, because they have carefully intertwined their religion and the state.  Their Torah (the first five books of Christianity’s Old Testament) teaches that God demands that they slaughter their enemies and possess the Holy Land.  Today’s white South Africans are praying for their oppressors and for a multicultural Rainbow Nation, when, if they want their country back, they should be praying for their own victory.

 

In taking over American culture, a key goal of Jewish interests was assuming control of the press.  The US media are now largely controlled by Jewish interests.  This is one reason why Jewish “excesses” are underreported, and those of others are emphasized.  The prime example of this is reporting on the Israel / Palestine conflict.  Another egregious example is the case of South Africa.  While South Africa was ruled by whites, there was endless reporting of incidents to show whites in a bad light.  Under black rule, horrific murders are committed on a continuing basis by South African blacks against South African white farmers, and there is rarely a murmur about this in the US press.  Far more South African whites have been killed by blacks since the onset of black rule in South Africa than blacks were killed by whites under white rule.  This fact is of no significance or interest to the Jewish-controlled US media.  US media reporting emphasizes reporting and entertainment that disparages, denigrates and weakens traditional US culture and the white race (it may be reasoned that the Ashkenazim are European, and therefore “white,” so this may seem a little strange).  Only whites can be racist.  (For more on the influence of Jewish interests on the US media, see John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt’s The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy (2007).)

 

The Appeal of Democracy to the Masses and to Their Controllers

 

The political system of democracy (or representative democracy) has great appeal for the masses.  Even though the wealthy elite control the system, the masses believe that they are in charge.  Ultimately (as David Hume observed (Hume’s Paradox)), they are in charge, but most of the time they submit to control by their leaders – government by the consent of the governed.  Democracy is a workable system only if the population is homogeneous with respect to important attributes, such as race, religion, language, culture and politics.  The founders and early leaders of the US recognized this, and annihilated, conquered or suppressed all non-white-Anglo-Saxon-Protestants (e.g., Indians, Mexicans, French, Spanish).  The Israelis recognize that they have a problem under “democracy” in harboring a fast-growing minority population – the Palestinians.  They will take action to address it, so that their culture will not “lose control” of their country under democracy, by means such as restricting citizenship and immigration to Jews and denying the former-resident Palestinians a political voice (e.g., by herding them into “homelands” such as the West Bank and Gaza – making them prisoners in the very land that was once theirs).

 

We live today in a world of “virtual” democracy.  The apparent system of government is representative democracy, but it is totally ineffective (as a tool of the people).  The people think that they are in control and that their elected representative act for them, but their representatives in fact act on behalf of the wealthy.  Since democracy works best for the people when the people are homogeneous, the wealthy have no interest in allowing that to continue.  With a fragmented, heterogeneous country, such as the US is now, democracy comes to a standstill, becomes paralyzed.  That is exactly what the wealthy elite want.  That is why they passed the Immigration Act of 1965 – to flood the country with alien cultures, fractionate it, and remove all power from the people.  When the people do not speak with a unified voice, they are less of a threat to the controllers.  This is a straightforward application of the age-old principle of “divide and conquer.”  That is why the corporatist rulers of today’s world are so in favor of uncontrolled immigration, especially for large (potentially threatening) countries or unions (e.g., the US or the European Union).  Plato knew that democracy would not work as an effective means of government for the people.  The corporatists also know this, and that is why they are so adamant about spreading democracy around the world.  Along with debt-based money and compound interest, it is the third major tool of corporatism and global control.  (I will have more to say later about corporatism, which is simply rule by corporations.)  If the US citizenry were a still a people, it would fight back to defend itself.  As a fractionated agglomeration of cultures – a mongrel nation – it now has no cohesion or collective sense of destiny.

 

The corporatists have no problem with democracy.  They embrace it.  It is the perfect form of government for total control -- the people think that they are in charge, and so they are easy to manage.  Plato knew of the fundamental flaw of democracy as a form of government for the people – that the masses would elect poor leaders who would pander to them.  (Indiana’s Governor Rob Blagojevitch is the latest example.)  We see this clearly in America today.  The world’s most powerful democracy elects some of its poorest statesmen.  They are putty in the hands of the corporatists.  Didn’t you ever wonder about this?  As Franklin D. Roosevelt once observed, “Nothing in politics ever happens by accident.  If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way.”  Corporatism has three main tools at its disposal – debt-based money, interest, and democracy (I might also add to the list the legal concept of granting corporations the same rights as natural persons).  Democracy is a very important tool, and that is why you hear people like George Bush – a pawn of the corporatists – touting it so much.  It enables you to rape the people with impunity.  They think that they are in charge, and if things don’t work out well, then no one else is to blame but themselves.  At least they are right on the last item.

 

The Decline of American Culture and Will

 

The descendents of the Northern Europeans who conquered North America, decimated the Indians and placed them on reservations held onto the land until now, but they are no longer doing what is required to hold a country, and they (both the US and Canada) are fast losing it.  The founders of modern Israel knew what to do to conquer Palestine.  Their descendents are continuing to do what is required to hold onto that land.  The Afrikaners and the British conquered South Africa, settled it, and lived there for four centuries.  They died and killed for the land, and it was theirs.  The last two generations, however, did not know what to do to keep their land, or if they knew what to do they did not do it, and they have quickly lost their country.  They have thrown away what their forebears gained for them – a beautiful homeland.  The same is true of Zimbabwe.  The same thing is now happening to the US, to Canada, to Australia, and to every other country where mass immigration is diluting the culture that founded the country and made it great.  In throwing their country away, South Africa’s current generation have shamed themselves and forsaken the legacy bequeathed to them by their forebears, built through centuries of blood, tears and hard work.  The United States and Canada are doing the same thing.  Australia, England, and the rest of the British Commonwealth are doing the same thing.  It must be a British thing.  These people no longer deserve the countries that their forefathers bequeathed to them.

 

Americans are losing confidence in the will and ability of the US government to protect American citizens abroad.  America has adopted a “bunker” mentality; US Embassies abroad look like armed fortresses.  This was not necessary when America was respected in the world.  (It is not necessary today.  Protection of foreign embassies is the responsibility of the host government.  If any host government cannot protect a US embassy, America should step in to do so, or leave.)  Americans who get into trouble overseas cannot take comfort that the US government will come to their aid (e.g., Americans who languish for years as victims of kidnappings in foreign lands, such as the three Americans who were recently (July 2008) rescued by the Colombian armed forces (along with Ingrid Betancourt).  Now that the US government offers its citizenship to millions of people from foreign cultures every year (including 50,000 drawn by lottery!), granted citizenship to millions of illegal invaders in 1986 and is trying to grant it to 12-20 million illegal invaders today, it has declared that it places no value US citizenship, other than an means to economic activity.

 

Many books have been written about the decline of American culture and loss of spirit and sense of destiny.  These include: Georgie Anne Geyer’s Americans No More (1996); Robert Bork’s Slouching Towards Gomorrah (1996); Patrick Buchanan’s The Death of the West (2002), State of Emergency (2006) and Day of Reckoning (2007); and John Strausbaug’s Sissy Nation (2008).  A new report on the loss of traditional American culture is E Pluribus Unum: The Bradley Project on America’s National Identity (2008).  This report observes that the United States was founded as a nation based on ideas, that the current generation is “forgetting” those ideas, and that we are losing our national identity.  Ann Coulter’s Treason (2003) discusses the treacherous attacks on America by “liberals.”

 

Excerpts from Buchanan’s Day of Reckoning are presented in the Appendices.

 

With due respect to Mr. Buchanan, I do not see that his list of suggestions will ever be implemented.  Even if they were, it would make no difference.  The US, as a society, has already failed.  It is too late.  The “point of no return” was passed long ago.  The fact that the conditions that motivated Buchanan’s list were allowed to come about demonstrates that the country has already failed.  The country has already committed cultural suicide.

 

Globalization

 

Free Trade Reduces the Once-High Income of US Workers

 

It is a fundamental truth of economics that trade promotes economic growth.  It generates additional transactions (as people desire material things that are not locally available or are more expensive locally) and it may be more economically efficient (producing more goods at lower cost by taking advantage of comparative advantages).  In promoting free trade, the wealthy elite knew that it would increase their riches.  At the same time, free trade is an equalizer.  The US middle class once had incomes that were far higher than those of workers in the rest of the world.  If tariffs had continued to equalize the labor component of goods, the US middle class could have continued to have high incomes.  The US would have continued to operate as a closed system, and the difference in wages between the US workers and those in other countries would have been irrelevant.  To have done this would have sustained high incomes (and power) for the middle class, but produced much less wealth for the wealthy elite.  While the wealthy crave ever more wealth for themselves, they have no concern for the middle class.

 

(Note that although trade may be more economically efficient, it is often exquisitely wasteful of precious resources, and very inefficient from a non-economic viewpoint.  Early in the petroleum age, the cost of oil was low – as low as ten cents per barrel.  When the cost of oil was still relatively low compared to today’s prices (e.g., one dollar or ten dollars per barrel, compared to over one-hundred dollars today), the country started importing many things that it did not have to, such as food and toys from around the world (the US now imports forty percent of its food, and almost all of its toys).  This practice was extremely wasteful of natural resources (e.g., oil).  To economists, however, all that matters is the money – if it is cheaper right now, and then do it!  The fact that all of the oil will be gone someday, and this practice is incredibly wasteful and unsustainable, is simply an “externality.”  The practice of assigning monetary prices to things (even human life!) or alternatives and making decisions based on economic analysis (e.g., using “cost-benefit” analysis; or condoning the destruction of the Amazon Rain Forest since the logs can be sold for money; or promoting “free trade” because it increases gross national product even though it ruins people’s lives), as economists are wont to do, leads to very wrong decisions and policies.  The radioactive waste from nuclear power plants lasts for 30,000 years.  The fact that this generation’s use of nuclear power destroys the quality of life for the next thousand generations of human beings and causes irreparable harm to the environment is not a concern to an economic model – it is simply an “externality.”  But nuclear power is now “cheaper” than oil, so do it!)

 

Under massive international free trade, there are no tariffs to offset the wage differentials between US workers and workers in third-world countries making pennies or a few dollars per day.  If there were, the high incomes of US workers could continue, but there would be much less trade and less profits for the wealthy.  So the economists – the intellectual servants of the wealthy – kept insisting that everyone would be better off under a system of free trade.  What a lie!  A few voices were heard to say that the income of US workers making far more than workers in poor countries would have to fall, but they were quashed.  The official line of the economists and the government was that “everyone would be better off” (“a rising tide lifts all boats,” as economists such as Jeffrey Sachs are wont to say).  Tariffs and quotas were lowered or eliminated, and free-trade agreements such as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), and the European Union (EU) were established.

 

Free Trade Has Reduced the Quality of Life of the US Middle Class

 

After a half-century of free trade, the quality of life for the US middle class has been substantially diminished.  The US middle class was placed in direct competition with workers making a dollar a day.  As long as we had high technology and most of the third world did not, the productivity advantage of US workers enabled their high wages to continue, even under free trade.  But as the rest of the world acquired the same technology that was available in the US, the productivity advantage of the US worker disappeared, and there was no possible way without tariffs for US wages to remain high.  And they didn’t.  In 1950, a family could be supported on a single income.  Now, it takes two incomes to maintain a family.  On average, each family has to provide twice as many hours to the competitive labor market as it did before, just to make ends meet.  The move to both parents working in the competitive labor market started with the Second World War, and continued for several decades.  By sending more and more wives to work, US families were for a long time able to offset the low wages of foreign countries.  By now, however, that trend is complete, with both parents working in most families.  Over that same period, the rest of the world industrialized.  In many places it became as productive as the US.  This meant, in a world of free trade, that US incomes had to fall: All of the adults were now working in the competitive labor market, and it was no longer possible for families to offset the wage differential by sending our wives to work – they were all working!  It is no longer possible for families to provide more labor, since there is no one left to send to the labor market.  The US middle class are therefore now seeing a real decline in their individual wages and in their quality of life.  The wealthy are far better off than before, but US middle class workers are much worse off – both parents must work in the competitive labor force, and now that all of the wives are working, real family (not just individual) incomes are falling.  The US government declared war on the US middle class, and the war is almost won.  Both parents of almost all families must now enter the competitive labor force, must work longer hours than ever before, and the children are raised in “industrial” day care centers.

 

Free Trade Has Decimated the US Manufacturing Base

 

The US has given its technology to the world, has shipped its manufacturing capacity overseas, and has outsourced many of its jobs.  Because of the massive difference between US wages and wages of workers in poor countries, there was no way under free trade that US firms could continue to pay high wages, once all countries had access to technology.  Without tariffs or quotas to offset the low wage rates of poor countries, US manufacturers could either close up shop or transfer their operations to low-wage-rate countries, which they did on a massive scale.  (The import of millions of low-wage illegal aliens was also a response to this.)  The US lost its manufacturing in shoes, textiles, steel, consumer electronics – virtually everything except exotic weapons.  The US no longer manufactures what it uses, and it is now purchasing massive quantities of products from countries such as China, to whom it has exported its manufacturing capacity.  The problem is that it does not have sufficient production of its own to sell to these countries, and so the trade deficit has exploded.  The US is the world’s largest debtor nation, in thrall to the rest of the world.  Its main exports are arms (military equipment).  It imports most of its consumer goods and about 40 percent of its food, when it was once – and could be today – totally self-sufficient in these areas.  It is no longer self-sufficient, and has left many of its citizens with little meaningful work.  The US government has caused all of these things to happen, at the behest of the wealthy-elite controllers of the country and the world.

 

Globalization Destroys Local Cultures

 

“Globalization” refers to the fact that the entire world has become an integrated industrial / economic system.  This system is an economic powerhouse, a juggernaut.  It consumes everything – labor and natural resources – to produce material goods.  It is a remarkably productive and efficient system (“efficiency” in the economic (money) sense, not in physical (resource) terms).  Under the policies of free trade, inefficient technologies, firms, and societies all “go out of business.”  This fact is now becoming very clear to Moslems.  Under global free trade, they are no longer able to keep their wives at home if they want a high material standard of living, like the West. It is still possible to maintain this cultural practice in some countries, which are flush with oil riches.  But in poorer Moslem countries, both parents will have to work, just as they do in the US.  Moslems must now send their wives off to work, to be seduced by their bosses and given the financial independence to raise the divorce rate to 50 percent, just as in the West.  Essentially, under free trade, Islam – Islamic culture, which places a high value on protecting its women – must go out of business or adopt Christian practices (which is about the same thing).  And that is the essence of the rising conflict between Islam and Christianity.  The two religions are, in essence, mutually exclusive.  In a tightly integrated world, both cannot exist side by side.  Today’s Christianity is the religion of capitalism.  Christian nations have sent their wives to work, and Islamic nations do not wish to do this.  In the absence of protective tariffs (in this case, to offset the comparative advantage of countries in which both parents work), however, it is not possible to continue this practice.  If Islamic nations wish to continue to protect their women, by keeping them out of the industrial labor force, then they will have to abandon free trade – the “great homogenizer.”  But the owners of the world – the wealthy industrialists – will never allow this.  And for this reason, global conflict between Islam and Christianity is inevitable.  It will not cease until free trade ceases, and this is not likely until massive change occurs, such as the end of free trade, the end of the petroleum age, global war, or the annihilation of Islam or Christianity.

 

Much has been written about the destructive effects of globalization.  Globalization has been the direct cause of much environmental and social destruction around the globe.  Some of the books on this subject are: Robert D. Kaplan’s The Ends of the Earth (1996), Joseph Stiglitz’ Globalization and Its Discontents (2002), John Pilger’s The New Rulers of the World (2002), Kevin Danaher’s 10 Reasons to Abolish the IMF& World Bank (2001), Lori Wallach and Michelle Sforza’s The WTO: Five Years of Reasons to Resist Corporate Globalization (1999) and John Perkins’ Confessions of an Economic Hit Man (2004).  Thomas Friedman’s The Lexus and the Olive Tree (1999) is an encomium for globalization.

 

Globalization Is the New Colonialism

 

Kevin Danaher’s 50 Years Is Enough: The Case against the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (1994) is a little dated, but it is an excellent compendium of examples of the massive environmental destruction and human misery caused by international finance and “development” organizations.  Here follows an excerpt from this book.

 

“Despite the steady decline of Third World economies under the tutelage of economists from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), these institutions keep insisting that their wise men and their ‘free market’ policies will eventually foster development. Third World leaders are told that, in order to get more loans to pay off the old loans, they must implement ‘structural adjustment’ reforms. These include:

 

  • selling state enterprises to the private sector in order to make governments more efficient
  • raising producer prices for agricultural goods so farmers will have the incentive to grow and market more food
  • devaluing local currencies (in line with their world market value) to make exports more competitive in foreign markets
  • reducing government budget deficits by cutting consumer subsidies and charging user fees for social services such as health care and education
  • encouraging free trade by dropping protectionist measures and by reducing regulation of the private sector
  • creating incentives to attract foreign capital.

 

“Yet the central question that is consistently avoided by the enforcers of these policies is, do they work?

 

“Look at the case of Africa. Thirty of the 47 governments in sub-Saharan Africa have been pressured into implementing structural adjustment reforms. The effects have been devastating to the poor. As early as 1988, the United Nations concluded: ‘The most vulnerable population groups, in particular women, youth, the disabled and the aged, have been severely and adversely affected.’

 

“Though western economists claimed that these policies would reduce debt burdens, by 1992, Africa's external debt had reached $290 billion, about 2.5 times greater than it was in 1980. The record of the IMF/World Bank gurus is also dismal in Latin America and Asian debtor countries such as the Philippines.

 

“Asian countries such as Japan, China and South Korea that have experienced high growth rates have done so not through a dogmatic ‘free market’ strategy as espoused by the Bank and the Fund, but through highly state-directed economies.

 

“Usually, we are exposed to analyses from people in the top 2 percent of the world's income pyramid. In contrast, the book you are holding includes strong representation of Third World voices explaining the many damaging effects of the neoliberal economic strategy imposed on them by ‘experts’ from Washington. As Martin Khor, Director of the Third World Network in Malaysia, sums it up:

 

‘Structural adjustment is a policy to continue colonial trade and economic patterns developed during the colonial period, but which the Northern powers want to continue in the post-colonial period. Economically speaking, we [countries in the South] are more dependent on the ex-colonial countries than we ever were. The World Bank and IMF are playing the role that our ex-colonial masters used to play.’"

 

For a discussion of the impact of free trade on reducing the quality of life for the US middle class, see John Culbertson’s The Dangers of “Free Trade” (1985).  I have not read Ravi Batra’s The Myth of Free Trade: The Pooring of America (1996), but I see it referenced from time to time.  Lou Dobbs’ books, Exporting America: Why Corporate Greed Is Shipping Jobs Overseas (2004) and War on the Middle Class: How the Government, Big Business, and Special Interest Groups Are Waging War on the American Dream and How to Fight Back (2006) are popular recent books on this subject.

 

The Destructive Effects of Free Trade and Globalization Are Denied and Covered Up

 

The general public is aware that the quality of life is declining for the US middle class, but it is not highly aware of the reasons, and of the role of globalization as a source of the decline in its status.  Similarly, there is awareness that the number of desperately poor people in the world has skyrocketed from one to five billion over the past century, all the while that the world leaders and their economists were proclaiming that economics would improve things.  The fact is that free trade is responsible for the destruction of the quality of life of third-world countries and for a decline in the quality of life for the US middle class: it serves only the wealthy well.  A few books have been written on the subject for the mass reading public, such as Stiglitz’ Globalization and Its Discontents and Friedman’s The Lexus and the Olive Tree, but they do not explain well why the current system of globalization is so destructive socially, environmentally and economically for most people, and yet persists.  John Perkins’ book, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, explains very well why and how the system works in the international arena, but it is not taken seriously because it appears to be some sort of “historical fiction” (since anecdotes about Perkins’ recruitment into the “system” cannot be verified).  Books that describe the world control system rather well, such as Jim Marrs’ Rule by Secrecy are generally dismissed as “conspiracy” theories – people simply don’t believe that the world system can possibly be as sinister as it appears to be – and is!

 

The perception that globalization is destroying the quality of life for many and greatly increasing the number of people living in direst poverty is growing.  The level of dissatisfaction with globalization is increasing, and being voiced with increasing force.  Large public protest demonstrations now accompany international meetings on world trade.  Kevin Danaher and Roger Burbach’s book, Globalize This!: The Battle against the World Trade Organization and Corporate Rule (2000) describes this growing movement.

 

I picked up three small books some time ago that describe well what is going on.  They are items in Seven Stories Press’s Open Media Pamphlet Series: Kevin Danaher’s 10 Reasons to Abolish the IMF and World Bank (2001); Lori Wallach and Michelle Sforza’s The WTO: Five Years of Reasons to Resist Corporate Globalization (with introduction by Ralph Nader) (1999); and Juliet Schor’s A Sustainable Economy for the 21st Century (1995, 1998).  While these books present a good description of the situation (the books are a little dated now, but the message is still valid), their audience is very limited, so that most people have never been exposed to them.  They confirm the thesis set forth by Perkins that the international financial institutions work to control third-world countries to transfer wealth from those countries to the wealthy elite of the economically developed nations.  A few excerpts from them are presented in the Appendices.

 

Globalization Destroys Nations

 

As globalization increases, there is a corresponding decrease in nationalism and the power of nations.  Globalization is at the same time increasing the income gap between rich and poor nations, while making the wealthy ones very homogeneous.  The leading world corporations are now economically more powerful than many nations.  The oil-rich nations of the Middle East are now so wealthy from oil that their “sovereign wealth funds” control a large and increasing portion of the world’s financial firms and markets.  See James McPherson’s Is Blood Thicker than Water? (1998) for discussion of the decline in nationalism in the globalized world.   Other books about nationalism in the era of globalization are Richard Worzel’s Facing the Future (1994), Robert Birrell’s A Nation of Our Own (about Australia, 1995) and Peter Brimelow’s The Patriot Game: Canada and the Canadian Question Revisited (1986).

 

In the environment of free trade and globalization, the relative position of the US was bound to change.  A book that discusses this is Eugene McCarthy’s A Colony of the World: The United States Today (1992).

 

The era of globalization will come to an end as the petroleum age draws to an end.  In fact, globalization will not last until global oil exhausts.  The global industrialized world will start to collapse as soon as the world starts down the back side of Hubbert’s Curve (the decline in global oil production) – just about now.  Until now, the globalized world has been held together by economic power and industrial wealth.  As the petroleum age comes to an end, this power will disappear, and global industrial society with it. As global wealth evaporates, the forces of ancestry, language, religion and customs will move once again to the fore.  The importance of ancestry, language, religion and customs in structuring civilizations is discussed, for example, in Samuel Huntington’s The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order (1996). 

 

With the rise of globalization, there has been a move to a single world government.  There is much fear, resentment and anger over this trend, as well as an abundance of conspiracy theories.  Books on this subject include David Icke’s Tales from the Time Loop (2003), The David Icke Guide to the Global Conspiracy (and how to end it) (2007), Jim Marrs’ Rule by Secrecy (2000), Daniel Estulin’s The True Story of the Bilderberg Group (2007), Gary Kah’s En Route to Global Occupation (1991) and Holly Sklar’s Trilateralism (1980).  The single world government is a popular theme of eschatology and “end times” fiction (e.g., Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins’ Left Behind series (1995 and later)).

 

The argument (frequently seen) that globalization is preventing democracy from protecting the environment and quality of life for people is laughable.  Democracy is simply a tool of corporatism, and even in the absence of globalization and corporatism, democracy alone is historically seen to also be very destructive of nature.  In fact, all three systems work synergistically to maximize the environmental destruction.

 

Low Security

 

There are two basic levels of security – personal security and national (state) security.  Both are crucial to the individual’s quality of life, and both are currently at low levels in the US.  While much has been written on national security, less has been written on the subject of personal security.  (The reason: The level of national security is a direct concern to the wealthy elite (since they don’t want the country to be conquered by another sovereign power), but the average level of personal security is not, since they can afford to purchase security protection, and it matters little to them that most individuals cannot.  In fact, it is to the distinct advantage of the wealthy elite to have a low average level of personal security, since they make much money from production of security systems and provision of security services.  It also justifies the government’s maintaining a large police force to monitor and control the general population.  This situation has been commonplace in the third world for a long time, but is new to the US, as it absorbs third-world culture and attributes as a direct result of mass immigration from third-world cultures.)

 

Personal Security

 

Fifty years ago, the level of personal security was very high for most people in the United States.  Most people lived in relatively small towns.  It was not necessary to lock your house unless you went on vacation.  A 1955 Chevrolet automobile ignition could be turned in a permanent “on” position, and the key never used again – my parents-in-law had just such a car.  They key was never used.  The car was left unlocked at all times.  Theft was not a concern – either for the car or its contents.  You could walk safely in any area of town.  Vagrancy and loitering were not allowed.  Children could walk to and from school without fear.  Blacks and other minorities had to be back in their neighborhoods after dark.  Schools were free from violence and fear.  Teachers and principals were respected.

 

All that has changed.  Everything must now be under lock and key.  Thefts and break-ins are a common occurrence.  There used to be gangs in big cities, such as Los Angeles, New York and Chicago, but now they are everywhere.  A police office told a neighbor of mine recently (in Spartanburg) that the Bloods and the Crips were active in a neighborhood about a mile from our neighborhood.  MS-13 (Mara Salvatrucha) is powerful, violent and widespread.  This past week, a local gang cut off the hands and feet of a local young mother.  You cannot walk safely at night in virtually any US city.  Break-ins and burglaries are commonplace.  Random violence is increasing, as civil society breaks down.  The security of the country has been lost to violent criminals.

 

The security situation has changed in the US mainly because of mass immigration, which has destabilized the social fabric of the country.  Another major factor is criminalization of drugs – in order to support an illegal drug habit, many drug users must steal thousands of dollars of goods every day (and sell them to fences for ten cents on the dollar).  Another factor is that much crime is committed by immigrants from third-world nations and blacks.  Fifty years ago, the country was essentially free of immigrants, except for a relatively small number from Europe.  Now, the country is overrun by immigrants from all cultures and the police are prevented from using “profiling” to apprehend them.  Every year, the number of deaths to US citizens caused by illegal aliens is greater than the number of deaths to soldiers in the war in Iraq (this is of no concern to the US government, because the number of illegal aliens arriving is vastly greater than the number of Americans that they kill).  Because of America’s failed welfare system, the unemployment rate for black males is 50 percent, and 70 percent of black babies are born out of wedlock.  Sixty years ago, black crime against whites was relatively rare, since blacks were required to be back in their neighborhoods by dark.

 

Murders of people by random attackers are now common.  Previously, most murders were for crimes of passion, fights and robberies.  Now, random violence is common (drive-by shootings, casual murders of random victims by violent gang members).

 

The level of violence in public schools is very high.  This violence includes not only assaults on students by other students, but also assaults on teachers and administrative staff as well.  School massacres, such as in Columbine, Colorado, were unheard of until recent times.  The violence against Americans is perpetrated not just by aliens and other Americans, but by the US government itself, as in the case of the Waco Branch Davidian Massacre and the murder of Randy Weaver’s wife and son in Ruby Ridge, Idaho.  Discussion of local crime is presented in Wayne LaPierre’s Guns, Crime and Freedom (1994) and in Jonathan Karl’s The Right to Bear Arms (1995).  Duplicitously, the US government blames the decline in security on “terrorists,” when it is in fact its own policies (of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders) that have caused it.

 

State (National) Security

 

At the national level, the decline in security has been profound.  When I was young, all people, luggage and vehicles entering the country were searched.  Now, most people and goods entering the country are not inspected.  The “9/11” attack on the World Trade Center Twin Towers was carried out by 11 Egyptians who were in the country legally, and who received training in flying large airplanes quite legally from a US firm, here in the US.  Because of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders, the country is very vulnerable to attack.  It is just a matter of time before a nuclear “suitcase” bomb is exploded on a US city.  The technology is available, the desire and will are strong, and the ease with which such an attack could be carried out is high.

 

The US government publicly decries and condemns the 9/11 violence, but in fact it relishes it.  Under the capitalist political / economic system, the total cost associated with 9/11 (reconstruction and new security systems) is a positive contribution to the fundamental measure of the system’s status and the success of the country – gross domestic product (GDP).

 

Through its policies of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders (all in support of globalization), the US government has destroyed the security and stability of the US population.  Fifty years ago, it was not uncommon to leave homes and cars unlocked in most US towns.  That is now out of the question.  Because of these policies, the US is now quite vulnerable to attacks such as those on the World Trade Center, and its own citizens – who can no longer be readily distinguished from foreigners – are now submitted to onerous security measures at airports and other public places – even to enter their own public buildings.  Every year, illegal aliens kill thousands of native US citizens, by murder and road accidents.  Every year, the deaths of US citizens caused by illegal aliens exceed the deaths to US soldiers in the Iraq war.  All of this has been caused by the policies of the US government, aimed at generating massive wealth for the wealthy elite.  Why do the US president and many members of Congress support illegal immigration?  They support it because it is good for business.  US politicians are in thrall to the wealthy elite who control America, and they will promote virtually any policy that increases income and wealth for them.  The US is in fact a fascist state – one in which government interests are aligned with those of big business.  It is a plutocracy, in which the rich rule.  It is an oligarchy, in which a small group of wealthy elite rules.  It is a country managed by a government of the “ruling class,” who do the bidding of the wealthy elite.  It is no longer a government “of the people, by the people, for the people.”  It is a part of the global corporatist complex.

 

Books that discuss the issue of national security include Russell Howard and Reid Sawyer’s Terrorism and Counterterrorism: Understanding the New Security Environment (2004) and Bruce Hoffman’s Inside Terrorism (2006).  Both of these books discuss the major role of religion in causing terrorism and violence.  They do not discuss the fact that the low levels of national and individual security have been brought about by the plutocratic policies of the US government.

 

The Politics of Envy

 

The “politics of greed” refers to the use of political power to acquire material goods or services.  The “politics of envy” refers to the desire of “have-nots” to destroy the wealth of “haves.”  The wealthy elite make good use of the politics of greed to increase their riches.  It is the basis for the current system of business in the US and the global economy.  The politics of envy is the motivation for rebellion and revolt by the poor.  It has been the basis for numerous revolutions and uprisings, such as the French Revolution, the Haitian Revolution, the Russian Revolution and the Luddite uprising in England.  The politics of greed is not a major concern of the poor – it is expected that political leaders seek political power to amass wealth, and are highly motivated by greed (and lust for power and illicit sex).

 

The politics of envy is being nurtured both at the global level and the national level.  At the global level, it is the basis for the hatred by Moslems of Christianity and the materialistic West.  At the national level, the politics of envy has been at a low level for many years, because, although the position of the middle class was deteriorating, the quality of life was in fact still very good – the best that mankind has seen in the history of civilization.  The poor had no reason to rebel, because of the massive and generous US welfare program.  Now that the fortunes of the middle class are about to plummet, the situation will change drastically.  The middle class will become poor, and very anxious and stressed.  The wealthy will continue to be comfortable.  As soon as the US economy collapses (and this will happen soon, as Hubbert’s Peak passes), the middle class will turn on the wealthy.  They will turn on them for two reasons – motivation by the politics of envy, and knowledge that the wealthy willfully created the disaster by promoting population growth to a level far in excess of what solar energy could support.

 

A people depend on intelligent and wise leaders for guidance (in keeping them safe from conquest by foreigners).  They also hope for a measure of honesty, fairness, decency and loyalty.  They are quite willing to tolerate a certain level of greed and lust for power.  America’s founders were committed to providing a framework for promoting “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” for the common man, but America’s current leaders have abandoned that framework and betrayed the American middle class.  They have replaced government “of, by and for the people” by a government and economic system that generates fabulous wealth for the wealthy elite.  They have subverted the founders’ concept and country.  They have turned against the middle class.  They have sacrificed the high quality of life and security of the middle class simply to generate massive wealth for the wealthy elite.  When collapse occurs, the middle class will turn on the government and the wealthy with intense anger and hatred, for having knowingly deceived them and betrayed them and robbed them of the founders’ heritage.  They will exercise their “right of primacy” and turn on recent immigrants (but not with hatred – why should they hate the immigrants? – today’s immigrants did not invade by force – the US government induced them and allowed them to enter and stay – they will attack immigrants as a soldier does his duty to attack the enemy, or as a white-blood cell attacks an alien virus).  They will turn on all minorities (defined by any observable distinguishing characteristic, including race, religion, language, politics, ethnicity), simply because they are different, and there is no longer space or resources sufficient to support the entire population.

 

When the economic situation deteriorates and it is clear that, with the passing of fossil fuel,  industrial society will never recover to its former levels, the American people will rise up in rebellion against the system that caused this to happen.  It will be “mad as hell, and not going to take any more.”  It will totally annihilate the corrupt system that destroyed the planet’s ecology, boosted human population to unsustainable levels, and caused “overshoot and collapse.”  This convulsion will end the old system and make way for the new.

 

Oppression; Slavery through Debt; Compound Interest

 

The United States Is No Longer “For the People”

 

The average American has lost much of his freedom, even though, compared to people throughout the ages (of civilization), he still enjoys an incredibly high level of freedom.  With the closing of the US Land Office in the late nineteenth century, the country declared that all of the free land was gone.  A man could no longer stake a claim to 160 acres of land and support his family off the land.  This was the last time that the country could support itself on current solar energy (about 63 million people at a low level of living).  The population was about 50 million people (24 million in 1850, 44 million in 1875 and 76 million in 1900).  From that time on, increasing population could be supported only through the use of technology and energy from fossil fuel.  Before long, most people of average means could survive only by participating in the competitive labor market in an industrial economy.  With the shift from a rural agricultural society to an industrial one, the American people would never be independent or truly free again.

 

The United States was a remarkable experiment in democracy.  The founding fathers created a government of, by and for the people.  This is an incredible thing for political leaders to do.  It is not surprising, however, that it did not endure.  Most politicians, such as the present leaders of the US, have little interest in using government to serve the people.  The very idea of using political power to serve the common people is surely an absurd notion to most of them.  It no doubt makes much more sense to use political power to serve the wealthy, as had been done through the ages.  Over time, America’s leaders abandoned the lofty ideals of the country’s founders, and “regressed to the mean” of venality and corruption.  With generation after generation of political leaders chipping away at the freedoms of the common man, it was just a matter of time until he returned to serfdom.  The common man is no match for ambitious, crafty leaders – the leaders of any society will always be its most able.  The US citizen was blessed with a high level of freedom because the US founding fathers – Masons – Plato’s Guardians – willed it and established it.  Recent generations of leaders do not relate to this concept.  Masonry has about died in the US, and with it the Masonic ideals and principles on which the country was founded.  (It should be remembered that not all of the founding fathers were in favor of establishing the US as a democracy.  These included James Madison, Alexander Hamilton and John Adams, who strongly opposed democracy.  They sided with Plato.)

 

Today, most people are slaves to the economic system that controls and operates the US.  There is no alternative.  You do as the system requires, or you will be imprisoned or killed.  While this has been the case for most of humankind throughout the ages, what is different now is that the proportion of the production of working people used to provide wealth to the wealthy elite was for a time low but has risen dramatically in recent years.  In a world filled with population and a destroyed environment, there is absolutely no alternative – there is nowhere else to go.  The option of escaping from this environment (industrialization) does not exist – put up with it or change it are the only options.  It is rather ironic that although the quality of life is declining for the US middle class, the level of wealth of today’s Americans is higher than in all of human history – the US middle class has a higher level of material comfort than the kings of the Middle Ages.  The problem is not that the quality of life is low for the US middle class – in relative terms, it is very high.  The problem is that it has been declining, that the direct cause of the decline is US government policy, and hope that future generations will enjoy a good life has been lost.  “What have you done for me lately?”

 

Slavery Through Debt

 

Most Americans – most citizens of the world – are slaves to the industrial economy.  And this economy is a cruel master.  It has destroyed much of nature – certainly at the local level where many people could interact with it on a daily basis.  In an industrial society, most jobs are repetitive, mind-numbing jobs that are not satisfying.  With the exporting of most of America’s manufacturing capacity to third-world countries, many people in the US do not even have the option of a manufacturing job.  Labor is now nothing more than an international commodity. The lack of meaningful work and well paying jobs has manifested itself in serious social stress, discontent, anxiety and misery.  As a result of the lack of meaningful work, many people have become ill or dysfunctional, and turned to drugs and crime.  The US now imprisons one percent of its adult population, and one black man in seven is in jail.  This is both a reflection of the lack of fulfillment associated with life in US society and the fascist nature of today’s America.

 

The major tool that the government uses to enslave the poor and middle classes is debt.  Since 1971, our currency and banking system has been backed by debt (debt-based money).  This system, a fundamental component of “growth-based economics,”  has the perverse incentive that it must always grow (by a rate equal to the discount rate charged by central banks on money that is borrowed from them by private banks), or it will collapse.  While corporations in the developed world have the skills to manage debt, most private individuals and third-world countries do not.  The interest scheme on which the debt is based is compound interest.  Under this scheme, the accumulated interest is added to the principal of the loan, so that interest is now charged not only on the original principal, but also on any previously-calculated interest (and on accrued “fees”) as well.  If the debt continues for very long (i.e., is not repaid promptly), the amount of the loan grows to astronomical levels.  With simple interest, the amount of interest on an unrepaid loan grows linearly in time.  With compound interest, the amount of interest on an unrepaid loan grows exponentially.  Eventually, if the debt is not repaid, under compound interest the debt grows to unmanageable (and before long, astronomical) levels and the borrower becomes a slave to the lender.

 

The Amazing Power of Compound Interest

 

No (closed, finite) system based on exponential growth – such as the world’s currency and banking system – can continue for very long.  (I am not speaking here of price inflation, and the general decrease in the value of money over time.  The value of money is arbitrary, and the monetary unit can be devalued as desired.  What I am speaking of here is the physical growth that the system of debt-based money and compound interest causes (via its inducement of economic growth).)  An economy using a money-and-banking system based on exponential growth keeps growing, faster and faster.  If a borrower does not promptly repay a loan based on compound interest (such as in the case of maintaining an unpaid balance on a credit card, or a third-world country that has taken a “development loan”), eventually (and very soon at high interest rates such as are common now (e.g., 20 percent)) he cannot possibly repay the loan.  At that point, he is under the complete control of the lender.  If the individual can declare bankruptcy, he will.  The lender may forgive the debt or a portion of it.  In practice, just enough debt is forgiven to keep the borrower alive, so that he continues to pay as much as he possibly can to the lender.  This is the mechanism by which the developed nations of the world keep the poorer nations in perpetual debt, and perpetually under their control.

 

Many people do not understand or appreciate the power of compound interest to explode the size of a debt, if it (or even just the interest) remains unpaid for very long.  Many years ago (starting in 1926), US businessman George S. Clason wrote a series of pamphlets about being thrifty and how to achieve financial success. His system was based on compound interest.  His pamphlets narrated parables set in ancient Babylon, and a number of them were compiled into the book The Richest Man in Babylon, which became very famous.  Clason understood the power of compound interest.  So did banks and insurance companies, which distributed his pamphlets to their customers.  Compound interest is contrasted to simple interest, where interest is not added to the principal (i.e., there is no compounding).

 

It is no coincidence that Clason used Babylon for the setting for his writings.  Babylon, the Book of Revelation’s “Great Whore of the Earth,” is considered by many to be Globalism – debt-based money, interest, democracy – the Iron Heel of Jack London.  (It is interesting to note that in Christian eschatology (doctrine about end times), Babylon is destroyed in the last days of the age.  Babylon was located where the current modern state of Iraq is today.  The war in Iraq has destroyed that country.  Is this a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy?  Or is the collapse of globalization the predicted destruction of Babylon?)

 

Because of the explosive effect of compounding, the predominant form of interest in finance and economics is compound interest.  Why?  Because it is exquisitely advantageous to the lenders, who are the rich.  Educated businessmen who use credit generally understand the malicious nature of compound interest.  They can manage debt well, pay it off quickly, and compound interest is not a problem.  These people rarely allow compound interest to enslave them.  Even if their business venture were to fail, they would typically insulate themselves from personal ruin by ensuring that the debt was incurred by a corporation that they could dissolve, rather than by themselves personally.  If they are big enough (e.g., a bank “too big to be allowed to fail”), then the government simply bails them out.  The system is set up so that the rich can always avoid the trap of malicious compound-interest debt – it is set up so that the rich can incur massive debt without danger of personal financial failure.  But for the poor, who tend to be uneducated and lacking in resources, the story is quite different.  Almost none of them understands the exponential-growth nature of compound interest.  Even if they incorporate, few lenders are willing to lend the money to a small-business corporation without the personal guarantee of the owner.  They are often granted loans from a lender who knows that they will likely not be able to repay, in full knowledge that the compound interest will explode, the debt will become massive and unmanageable, and the government will enforce the collection.  The poor often fail to repay their loans on time, the burden of debt under compounding quickly explodes, and they are lost.  These people cannot manage debt well, and they cannot possibly afford to take out loans based on compound interest.

 

Both the US Government and Christianity Promote Usury

 

The US government has abandoned its people, standing by as they become slaves to banks, credit-card companies, and consumer-loan companies.  In 2006, the Bankrupcy Reform Act (“Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005”) made it much harder for individuals to declare bankruptcy.  Most of the credit-card and consumer-finance loans in force today should never have been made, either because the borrower was not creditworthy or because the high interest rate and compounding virtually ensures that the debt will explode in size to unmanageable levels.  If the government would restrict interest rates to low amounts, such as a few percent at simple interest, then lenders would not make most of these loans, and that would be perfectly fine, since continued economic growth cannot continue without destroying the biosphere.  The US government enthusiastically promotes usury.  It supports the use of compound interest.  It endorses the enslaving of its citizens in oppressive debt.  It is beyond contempt.  The country’s leading religion, Christianity, used to stand in opposition to usury, but not any longer.  Today, to its great shame, it stands by as the state enslaves its people.  It is beyond contempt also.  Much to its credit, Islam still prohibits the charging of interest on loans.  (Islamic banking functions with similar “participatory financing” schemes, but it does not allow interest, and hence compound interest.  It is the only major religion to do so, and hence the only one whose fundamental doctrines are compatible with long-range sustainability of the planet’s biosphere.)

 

The United States government allows banks and credit-card companies to induce poor and middle-class people to assume large debts.  Many people cannot pay this debt off.  Under the system of compound interest and high interest rates (e.g., 20 percent), the debt becomes unmanageable.  The intense assault to foist heavy debt on the US population has been ongoing for about half a century.  Young families are provided with credit cards and no-down-payment mortgages.  They are induced to purchase all sorts of goods, such as appliances and automobiles, with incentives and “easy credit” inducements such as no-money-down, no payment for months, and free gifts.  The sales contract is immediately sold to financial organizations, and the process of charging compound interest begins.  Many people cannot afford to repay loans quickly, and eventually, the interest and fees far exceed the amount of the original debt.  The US government becomes an integral part of the process, not only in operating the exponentially-growing-debt system, but also as a debt-collection enforcer. This same process is applied to third-world countries.  From this point on, there is a never-ending transfer of wealth from the borrower to the lender.

 

Credit-Card Debt

 

The amount of interest charged on credit-card debt is truly astounding.  Credit-card debt is based on compound interest.  Additionally, there are many “fees” imposed, such as late-payment fees or “over-limit” fees.  The credit-card industry is impoverishing the US middle class.  On May 2, 2008, Jim Abrams of the Associated Press released an article about the predatory lending practices of credit card companies, and plans to introduce legislation to address them.  Here follow some excerpts from that article: 

 

“The Federal Reserve and other regulators are moving Friday to crack down on ‘unfair and deceptive’ practices in the credit card industry that have added billions in debt to people already struggling to cope with the economic downturn.

 

“In the most far-reaching crackdown on the credit industry in decades, the Fed and two government agencies are proposing rules that would stop credit card companies from unfairly raising interest rates and make sure they give people enough time to pay their bills.

 

“The banking industry is expected to fight the new rules.

 

“Travis Plunkett, legislative director for the Consumer Federation of America, said that while he hadn't yet seen the details, the rules ‘appear to address some of the most significant abuses in the credit card marketplace right now.’”

 

“The agencies said the new regulations could be finalized by the end of the year.”

 

“Plunkett said his group estimates that credit card debt is now about $850 billion, with households that don't pay their credit card bills in full every month owing an average $17,000.

 

“The proposed new rules would prohibit:

 

  • Placing unfair time constraints on payments. A payment could not be deemed late unless the borrower is given a reasonable period of time, such as 21 days, to pay;
  • Unfairly allocating payments among balances with different interest rates;
  • Unfairly raising annual percentage rates on outstanding balances;
  • Placing too-high fees for exceeding the credit limit solely because of a hold placed on the account;
  • Unfairly computing balances;
  • Unfairly adding security deposits and fees for issuing credit or making credit available;
  • Making deceptive offers of credit.”

 

“Ken Clayton, senior vice president of card policy for the American Bankers Association, said the industry will fight the new proposals, describing them as ‘aggressive regulatory intervention in the marketplace that will result in higher prices and less consumer credit.’

 

“He said the change ‘basically says that we can't price for risk’ and that if higher risk borrowers don't bear the costs, those costs will be passed along to other consumers.”  This is blatantly false – the “other consumers” don’t need to make the loan!

 

The very significant thing to observe is that the proposed changes do not address the principal evil associated with credit-card debt – compound interest.  As long as the lenders can retain that tool, they will continue to enslave the US middle class – correcting all of the abuses listed above will not change this at all.  Every month, the US middle class is transferring massive amounts of compound-interest earnings to banks and credit-card companies.  This continual drain on the US middle class is totally unnecessary and severely diminishes its quality of life.  The same situation applies to third-world debt.  Compound interest is the only thing that really matters in the long run.  Without it, debt is manageable; with it debt is not manageable.  By keeping the middle class in debt, under compound interest, the debt will continue to grow exponentially (until the borrower can no longer pay), and the credit-card companies and other lenders will continue to enslave the borrowers and suck them dry.  (Note that in the long run, the fees are irrelevant.  All that matters is the compounding.)

 

Mr. Clayton’s comment that the proposed government regulations will result in higher prices and less consumer credit is a gratuitous joke.  If all credit-card debt were eliminated, the middle class would be much better off.  (Fifty years ago, credit cards were in very limited use, and certainly not available to the masses.  Most consumer-loan debt (for refrigerators, ovens, washing machines, televisions, cars) was held by local merchants, and if someone got into trouble and could not pay, the debt was cancelled.  The only long-term debt most families had was a home mortgage, and this was well regulated by the government (low down payment only for well qualified buyers for government-insured loans, 20 percent down payment for commercial-bank loans).  The loan was structured to be amortized in 15-30 years at a fixed interest rate and fixed monthly payments (including principal, interest, taxes and insurance (PITI)).)

 

Examples of the Power of Compound Interest

 

Compared to the power of compound interest, none of the above measures will cause any change in the ability of moneylenders to enslave borrowers by overwhelming them with debt.  The following table shows how a balance of $17,000 will grow under an interest rate of 20 percent, compounded annually (many lenders compound monthly (or even daily or continuously), in which case the debt grows even faster).

 

 

 

Year (n)

 

Factor

Size of debt after n years, with initial debt amount of $17,000 and an annually compounded interest rate of 20 percent

1

1.2

17,000 x 1.2 = $20,400

2

1.2 x 1.2 = 1.44

17,000 x 1.44 = $24,480

3

1.2 x 1.2 x 1.2 = 1.728

17,000 x 1.728 = $29,376

4

2.0736

$35,251.20

5

2.48832

$42,301.44

10

6.191736422

$105,259.52

20

38.33759992

$651,739.20

30

237.3763138

$4,035,397.34

40

1469.771568

$24,986,116.66

50

9100.43815

$154,707,448.60

 

 

The preceding table dramatically illustrates the power of compound interest.  After five years, the initial debt of $17,000, if not repaid, has exploded to $42,301.44.  At the end of a person’s adult life (say, a span of 50 years as an adult), an initial debt of $17,000, if not repaid, would have grown to over $154 million dollars.  Who cares about additional fees, when compound interest alone is sufficient to completely overwhelm the debtor?  The government’s “red herring” proposed legislation is focusing all of the attention on addressing practices that, even if totally eliminated, will have no effect on the final outcome, which is driven by compound interest.

 

With simple interest, the amount of interest owed each year if the loan is not repaid is always same, equal to the annual interest rate times the principal (original loan).  In this example, that would be .2 times $17,000, or $3,400, each year.  While this is bad enough, after 50 years the total debt would just be $17,000 + 50 x $3,400, or $17,000 + $170,000, or $187,000.  This amount, while substantial, is manageable.  It is within reason that an individual could conceivably pay it, no matter how long he was unable to repay the original loan.  The amount of $154 million, under compound interest at the same nominal interest rate, is not.  The charging of 154 million dollars for a debt of 17 thousand dollars after 50 years serves no socially useful purpose.  Compound interest is a vicious, evil practice.  The charging of any interest at all was originally proscribed by all three Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam), but Judaism and Christianity now allow it.)  Why modern Christianity approves this practice is beyond comprehension.  Christianity asserts that it is against slavery, when in fact it is not.

 

Christianity, if it served the poor rather than the rich, would take a stand against usury and return to its original position.  It is impossible not to include compound interest within any reasonable definition of usury.  Indeed, Christianity of today – the handmaiden of capitalism – never addresses this insidious practice, and works actively in this and other ways to promote globalization (e.g., in its efforts in support of illegal immigration).

 

One of the fascinating features of compound interest is that the time period required to double the amount of interest is a constant, depending only on the interest rate.  For a compound interest rate of 20 percent, the “doubling time” is 3.80 years.  (An approximate formula for determining doubling times is the so-called “rule of 78”: the doubling time for a compound interest rate of r percent is approximately equal to 78/r.  For example, if r = 20, then the doubling time is 78/r = 78/20 = 3.9, which is close to the correct value of 3.80.)  In the physical world, it is not possible to double things very many times.  The following table shows the amount obtained after a specified number of doublings.

 

 

Number of Doublings

Amount

0

1 (the initial amount)

1

2

2

4

3

8

4

16

5

32

6

64

7

128

8

256

16

65536

24

1677216

32

4294967296

40

1.0995 x 10^12

48

2.8147 x 10^14

56

7.2058 x 10^16

64

1.8447 x 10^19

 

 

The notation 10^n used in the table denotes ten raised to the power n.  For example, the last entry, 1.8447 x 10^19 denotes the number 1.8447 times 1 followed by 19 zeros, or 18,447,000,000,000,000,000, or over 18 quintillion.  This is a very large number!  There is an Indian legend about a rajah who was tricked by unwittingly agreeing to give a subject one grain of rice for the first square of a checkerboard and doubling the amount for each successive square (i.e., two grains for the second square, four grains for the third square, etc.).  The rajah quickly learns, to his consternation and dismay, that there is not sufficient rice in all the world to accomplish this.  In one version of the legend, the rajah has agreed to give the hand of his daughter in marriage to the person who tricked him.  In another version (David Barry’s The Rajah’s Rice, W. H. Freeman, 1994), the rajah offers to give the calculated amount of rice back to the people.  The point to this fable is that it the process of doubling leads to astronomical amounts very quickly, and cannot continue for long (very many times).  This is the power of compound interest (or any other exponential-growth process).  At the compound interest rate of 20 percent (a typical rate for credit cards), the doubling time is approximately 3.8 years.  In fifty years, there are approximately 50/3.8 = 13 doublings, to 8192 times the original amount (the exact number is 9100).  Compound interest quickly leads to extremely large amounts.

 

The fact that exponential processes such as compound interest double in a fixed period of time means that they “explode” very quickly.  Explosions do not last very long – once an exponential process starts to approach the limit imposed by a finite world, the “end” is over very quickly.  Many people do not appreciate just how fast exponential processes come to an end.  Lester Brown illustrated this well in the title of a book that he wrote, The Twenty-Ninth Day.  The question he posed is, “If algae starts to grow in a pond exponentially, with a doubling time of one day, and the pond is half-filled with algae after 29 days, how much longer will it be before the pond is filled with algae?”  Without thinking, many people intuitively respond, “Another 29 days.”  But the correct answer is obviously one day.  It seems that the human mind instinctively avoids accepting an exponential-growth process, as being “unnatural.”  While there are many natural processes that grow exponentially for a short time, in a finite world they all terminate quickly.  This is often very desirable, such as in the case of a decomposing animal or the fermentation of wine or beer – we don’t have long to wait until the dead animal is gone, or the wine is ready to drink.  Unfortunately for mankind, however, it has based modern global civilization fundamentally on exponential growth, and so it of necessity will fail very quickly.  As we will discuss later in detail, the world’s economic system (growth-based economics) is based on exponential processes (compound interest, debt-based money).  This system is now starting to show signs of stress: financial markets are becoming very volatile and the biosphere is showing increasing evidence of collapse.  Bailouts of large banks are occurring.  The end of this system is very near.

 

(The above “doubling” table applies to any interest rate and any principal amount.  For example, at the compound interest rate of 20 percent, the doubling time is 3.8 years, so each successive row in the table corresponds to an additional 3.8 years of the loan term.  In the table, the initial amount has arbitrarily been set to 1, so that the successive entries in the Amount column represent factors indicating by how much the original debt / loan increases for each successive doubling.  For example, for a debt / loan amount of $17,000, simply multiply each table entry in the Amount column by $17,000.  To determine the debt amount in this example after three doublings, for example, simply multiply the factor given in the Amount column for three doublings (8) times the original debt amount.  In this example ($17,000 at 20 percent compound interest rate), the debt amount after three doublings (3 x 3.8 years = 11.4 years) is 8 times the original amount, or 8 x $17,000 = $136,000.)

 

Compound Interest Growth Is Like Cancer, and the US Government Endorses It

 

Compound interest is an insidious trap.  Almost no one can imagine the massive debt that can quickly arise from compound interest.  It should absolutely be proscribed under any humanitarian form of government or religion.  To agree to a loan based on compound interest is playing with fire.  It is a principal tool of the corporatists for enslaving unwary individuals and countries.  They induce the poor to take out loans that they cannot afford.  They offer them incredible inducements to accept compound-interest loans, such as no money down, no interest payments for several years, adjustable-rate mortgages (“ARMs”) with seductive initial terms and free gifts (such as, in my neighborhood, large-screen digital televisions and home appliances) just to get the “hook” in.  As soon as the debt is contracted, the spider has trapped the unwitting fly, and compound interest starts to work, like an insidious cancer.  Don’t do it!  Just say no!

 

If the US government cared about the welfare of its citizens, it would outlaw the charging of compound interest and require the refunding of all compound interest paid to date (or, which would be more practical, simply cancel all outstanding credit-card debt).  It would move to prohibit interest rates or loan terms that can result in interest amounts that exceed the principal amount during the expected lifetime of the borrower.  Sadly, the government no longer serves the people, and it will never consider such actions.  Compound interest is the most powerful tool for transferring wealth from the poor (individuals and countries) to the rich, and the US government will never move to eliminate it.  The debt that the US middle class and third-world countries have was foisted upon them by greedy bankers and other moneylenders making endless exhortations and inducements to accept credit.  Many of these individuals and countries are poor or struggling financially, and cannot possibly manage compound-interest debt – it was just a matter of time until they were overwhelmed by it.  Compound interest is the linchpin, the keystone of the wealthy in their scheme for enslaving the poor and sucking them dry.  It is a pernicious and deceptive practice that eventually enslaves most borrowers who, in difficult times, succumb to the relentless solicitations to accept credit-card and other consumer-credit loans.

 

The Wealthy Elite Can Escape the Trap of Compound Interest

 

The wealthy elite, who can manage debt and can avoid personal responsibility for the debt of their business enterprises (through incorporation or government “bailouts”), are not concerned with compound interest as a danger to their well being.  As long as the interest is paid promptly (at the same frequency as the rate of compounding), the debt does not grow exponentially – the amount of compound interest is the same as the amount of simple interest (at the same nominal rate), if the interest is paid off as it accrues.  The wealthy are the lenders, not the borrowers.  Even the small businessman who borrows tends to be a recipient of the benefits of compound interest through his consumer loans to customers (unless he sells the debt to someone else).  For the skilled businessman who borrows for business purposes, compound interest and simple interest work about the same, since the loan is promptly repaid.  Furthermore, the wealthy normally conduct business through limited-liability corporations, which can be dissolved if they go bankrupt, with no losses to the owners.  (Non-wealthy owners of small corporations must back the corporation’s loans with personal guarantees.)  The insidious effects of compound interest become manifest only when someone cannot repay (i.e., owes an “unpaid balance,” and pays the “minimum amount due”), at which time the debt begins to explode.  It is a ticking time bomb, ready to destroy and enslave the unwary, such as the poor or middle class who are induced to assume compound-interest debt by the unscrupulous moneylenders who use this tool (and in today’s nonIslamic society, that is all of them).

 

Why would the government allow (much less endorse and promote) a system that leads to enslavement of the poor through insurmountable debt?  For people who can manage debt, simple interest and compound interest are not much different.  For people who cannot, compound interest is a terrible trap – a catastrophe waiting to happen and is likely to happen.  It is a treacherous trap intended to destroy anyone who gets in debt over his head – individuals or third-world countries.  President Bush has declared that he does not want to help or “bail out” people who made imprudent or unwise financial decisions, such as the millions who purchased homes (under compound interest, with incredible inducements such as adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs), with two- or three-year “teaser” rates)) that they could not afford on the assumption that home prices would continue to rise.  But why would he support a system that destroys anyone who gets in over his head?  One slip (an illness, an accident, a lost job, a family crisis) and the interest explodes, and you are wiped out.  If compound-interest debt gets out of control (which is quite easy at a 20 percent nominal compound interest rate, especially for lower-income people who have been seduced into debt), at 20 percent nominal compound interest rate it quickly becomes impossible to pay it off.

 

The only people who agreed to ARMs with interest-only payments at the beginning were “subprime” borrowers who could not qualify for conventional (fixed-interest rate) loans.  If they could not afford the terms of a conventional loan, they surely cannot afford an ARM loan as soon as the interest payments begin (since the interest will exceed those of a conventional loan).  The only way the ARM loan can be handled is in a housing market of ever-increasing prices.  And in our world of “free-market capitalism,” this never happens – economic expansions and contractions always occur.  In our economic system, ARMs are virtually certain to end in default.

 

Returning to the table presented earlier, what possible rationale can there be for an interest charge of 154 million dollars on a loan of $17,000 for 50 years?  Certainly none that promotes social harmony.  The only reason for allowing the use of compound interest is to ensure the financial destruction of anyone who becomes unable to pay the loan off.  The only reason why the US government endorses compound interest is that it wants banks and other moneylenders to enslave poorer individuals and countries.  Compound interest is a system designed to destroy and enslave anyone who gets in debt over his head.  It is predatory and punitive – how else can you describe an interest system that balloons the size of a $17,000 debt to $154 million dollars in 50 years?  Compound interest is like cancer.  It grows exponentially and destroys.  Poor people who are induced to take on compound-interest loans are like moths drawn to a flame – they cannot resist offers of credit (since they are always living from paycheck to paycheck, and financial emergencies will always occur), and they perish quickly.  The US government is a vile promoter of this pernicious practice.  If it cared for the American people, it would abolish compound interest, which serves no purpose other than to enslave the poor in hopeless debt.

 

(The government’s policy of promoting of compound interest is very similar to its policy of promoting of miracle drugs at prices that people cannot possibly afford.  People will do anything that they can to extend their lives or reduce pain and suffering, but they cannot possible afford many of the new drugs.  As a result, the government pays for most of them, by transferring tax revenues from the middle class to the medical establishment.  The ubiquitous inducements to accept compound-interest loans and television commercials touting wonder drugs are very similar – they are both programs designed to enslave the middle class in debt, and transfer much of their income to the wealthy elite.)

 

(The debt-based money system puts tremendous pressure on banks to extend loans.  Without loans, there is no money, and no income for bankers.  A deposit made to a bank is in fact represented as a liability on its books, and a loan is represented as an asset.  Banks cannot bear to have unloaned deposits.  That is the reason why so many bad loans were made by international banks to noncreditworthy countries following the OPEC oil price increase of 1974.  The Arabs deposited their massive amounts of newly acquired wealth in international banks, which were then under great pressure to lend the money out.)

 

The Dynamic Duo: Debt-Based Money and Compound Interest

 

Debt-based money is destroying the biosphere, and compound interest is enslaving poor individuals and countries.  With these two schemes, bankers are destroying the world – both the natural world and civil society.  These schemes operate under government aegis – the government authorizes the banks’ creation of the money that represents debt, passes laws that allow compound interest, and enforces payment.  In earlier times, governments allowed the keeping of human slaves and colonies.  Today, individuals and third-world countries are enslaved by compound-interest loans that they are induced to take and cannot handle.  Slavery is alive and well today.  Today’s economic slavery is every bit as oppressive as the slavery of yesteryear.

 

The US government bends over backwards to keep the system running.  If problems arise, the government “fix” is always in favor of the rich, to keep the system running and the wealth flowing from the poor (individuals or countries) to the rich.  Examples of this are the savings-and-loan crisis, the bailout of Long Term Capital Management, and the current mortgage crisis.  All of the bailouts in these failures are for big business, and they are all paid for using taxes, most of which are collected from the middle class.  The government caused the current mortgage crisis, by promoting the extension of no-money-down mortgages to people who could not possibly afford them (under the system of “debt-based money,” more debt means more money, and a growing economy).  When the system started to collapse, e.g., with the collapse of Bear Stearns, the government rushed to bail out the lender, Bear Stearns (with a guarantee of up to 200 billion dollars to J P Morgan to purchase Bear Stearns and prevent its failure), but not a penny for the borrowers, the home mortgage holders.  In the quintessence of cynicism, the government declared that “market forces” should be allowed to “take care of” the individual home owners (who lose their homes, and may still be stuck with the mortgage), but not the moneylenders.   The government takes care of them.  The US government is now for the rich, not for the people.  President Bush reaffirmed this in his comments that the government was not going to rescue homeowners who made bad decisions.  Of course not! – he wants to spend all of the bailout money for the bankers who made bad decisions.  Of course, the bankers really didn’t make bad decisions at all – they deliberately made bad loans in full knowledge that the government would bail them out using taxpayer money, just as it did previously in the S&L scandal.

 

While difficult conditions have been the lot of the average person since the dawn of civilization, what is different now is that that the masses have great freedom (opportunity) and means (knowledge, technology, communications, weapons of mass destruction) to attack and destroy their masters.  The government has provided weapons to the rabble.  At the founding of the country, the masses had no motive to turn against their masters – their masters were founding a government “of, by and for the people.”  Today’s government now serves the wealthy elite, and has turned against the middle class.  In the past, the US middle class possessed the means and opportunity to overthrow the rulers, but they did not have a motive, since the government served them.  This situation has changed radically in recent times, to the point where the US middle class now has strong motives to turn against the governing class: the government no longer serves the middle class; the government has introduced policies (mass immigration, massive international free trade, and open borders) to destroy the quality of life of the middle class; and, with the passing of Peak Oil, there is no hope for a better or even a good future for themselves or their children.  Means, motive and opportunity – the stage is set for a revolution.

 

Hume’s Paradox

 

In his The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many (1993), Noam Chomsky describes “Hume’s Paradox.”  “…the general population has lots of cards. That’s something that David Hume pointed out a couple of centuries ago.  In his work on political theory, he describes the paradox that, in any society, the population submits to the rulers, even though force is always in the hands of the governed.  Ultimately the governors, the rulers, can only rule if they control opinion – no matter how many guns they have.  This is true of the most despotic societies and the most free, he wrote.  If the general population won’t accept things, the rulers are finished.”  In earlier times, religion was a primary tool for enforcing control of the leader over the population (“divine right of kings”).  Today, the major tool of government is debt (with religion playing a supportive role, in view of its abandonment of a stand against usury).  As the burden of debt on Americans increases to intolerable levels, the level of freedom and the quality of life is plummeting.  The current system that is America is a rotten, corrupt system that is not at all what the founders established.  It is just a matter of time until the American people realize that the system is designed to put them deep into debt, to keep them in debt, and to perpetually transfer as much wealth as possible from them to the rich.  At that point they will rebel.  If you are in debt, you are not free.  If you are hopelessly in debt, and the system created this problem, and the system will not let you escape, then there is only one alternative – destroy the system.

 

(This same logic applies to third-world countries.  Through the global currency and banking system (debt-based money, compound interest), the developed nations have burdened the third world with massive debt, from which they can never recover.  The leaders make the debt, and the people pay the price.  From time to time, a country reneges on its loans, at which time the international banks forgive just enough debt to keep the country in business, and its poor paying the rich banks forever.  How long will the world’s poor put up with this corrupt, evil system, this devil’s bargain between their leaders and the international banks?  Probably until the oil starts to run out – just about now.)

 

Decline in Freedom

 

Loss of Free Space

 

Many things that were once free are no longer available except at a high price.  Economics commoditizes everything.  The average man has lost much of his freedom.  The only way that most people can enjoy the natural satisfactions and pleasures of life now is to earn large amounts of money from the industrial society and purchase them.  Open, natural, free space is no longer available for most Americans on a regular basis, if at all.  Most of a person’s life will hence be invested in performing meaningless work in a crowded industrial environment to enjoy a few moments of simulated freedom (“vacation”).  There is no escape, since the planet is now totally populated by human society and overcrowded.  The only way out is complete destruction of the political, economic, religious and industrial system that has made a living hell out of human existence for most of the world’s population and threatens to bring about the extinction of most species, including mankind.

 

On the topic of freedom, it is relevant to recall a quote from Edward Abbey (cited in Christopher Manes’ Green Rage): “If we can draw the line against the industrial machine in America, and make it hold, then perhaps in the decades to come we can gradually force industrialism underground, where it belongs….Why settle for less?  And why give up our wilderness?  What good is a Bill of Rights that does not include our right to play, to wander, to explore, the right to stillness and solitude, to discovery and physical freedom?”

 

It should be recognized that although the average American is losing his historic freedoms, he still has a higher level of freedom than human beings have had for almost all of human history.  His loss of freedom is relative – his freedom is declining relative to that of his parents and grandparents, but it is in fact still very high.  Everything is relative, however, and today’s middle class see their level of freedom declining relative to that of their immediate ancestors.

 

Loss of Freedom from Crime

 

One simple freedom that the average American has lost is the ability to walk around his own town at any hour, without fear of being assaulted.  Canadians have lost the right to free speech – anyone convicted of “Holocaust denial” will be imprisoned (or killed, if you resist).  Loss of personal security is not a concern for the government, since crime increases gross domestic product (via the increased production required to replace stolen or destroyed property, the cost of security service, and the cost of medical treatment).

 

Because our society is becoming so crowded, the dysfunctional ills that are associated with overcrowding are increasing.  As a result, violence is rising.  Consequently, the government continues to place restrictions on the ownership of guns.  It is just a matter of time until US citizens lose the right to own guns entirely.  The irony of this is that the government is ostensibly taking this action to protect the citizens from violence.  The citizen will, at that point, be defenseless to protect himself in a violent society that has been spawned by the population policies of the government.

 

Because the government has promoted mass immigration and open borders, the Islamic extremists who pose the current major threat to US security are allowed to roam free within the US and on airplanes.  Sixty years ago, it was relatively easy to spot a foreigner, since there were very few of them in the US.  Now, it is still easy to spot someone from an alien culture, but the government has passed laws making it illegal to act on this information (“profiling”), for fear that citizens’ rights might be infringed on.  As a result, everyone is now a suspect – strangers in their own land – and subjected to the same security checks.  The application of Bayes’ rule to profile terrorists is prohibited. All of the traditional-culture Americans are now subjected to security checks at airports and other public places.  The average American has lost his freedom to board a plane without the major hassle of intrusive security checks, simply because his government has flooded the country with people from foreign cultures.  This suits the government fine, since the construction, operation and maintenance of onerous security systems generates much wealth for the wealthy elite.

 

Loss of Free Time

 

Because of mass immigration and overcrowding, many US workers face very long and expensive commutes to work.  This was not true sixty years ago, when the country had two-thirds the population that it now has.  Because of massive population growth and overcrowding, the price of housing has been pushed to astronomical levels – the median price of a modest home near Los Angeles or San Francisco is now about a half-million dollars.  This is out of reach for most people.  The massive increase in the price of housing and commute times are almost solely due to mass immigration and overcrowding.  Middle class workers have lost many freedoms and opportunities because of the government’s policy of mass immigration, such as free time (now that both parents must work outside the home and make long commutes); qualification for many jobs (now that Spanish is required for many); enjoyment of nature close to home; owning a nearby country cottage; eating fish from many lakes; access to reasonable-cost medical care; freedom to breathe unpolluted air; the freedom to serve, to sell to whomever one wants; and the comfort of living among and associating with one’s own culture.

 

Loss of Freedom from Hassle

 

The loss of freedom in our everyday lives is really apparent to a person of my age (66).  I was in the Chicago O’Hare Airport recently, and I stopped in an airport restaurant (the O’Hare Bar and Grill) for lunch.  I ordered a beer, at which point the waiter asked to see some form of identification, such as a driver’s license or a passport.  I refused, saying that this was ridiculous.  I am 66, have gray hair, and there is no waiter in the world who could possible think that I am under 18 or 21 (whatever the drinking age is in Illinois).  I asked him how old I thought I was.  He guessed 50.  I was not sure whether I should be flattered because he thought I really looked 50, or whether he was simply a poor judge of age.  He told me that he was just following the rules, and that he could not serve alcohol to anyone without demanding and seeing documented proof of age.  I told him that I was unwilling to play this silly game, and I had no beer with lunch that day.

 

De Tocqueville’s Astute Observation on Freedom

 

In his book, Liberal Fascism (2007), Jonah Goldberg makes the point that while freedom may be restricted by the state in “large” areas, it is very important to allow much freedom in “little” things.  (He quotes from Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America, “It must not be forgotten that it is especially dangerous to enslave men in the minor details of life.  For my own part, I should be inclined to think that freedom is less necessary in great things than in little ones.”)  I don’t mind being told that I must have a passport to re-enter the US without a hassle, but I really resent being told, at age 66, that I cannot order a beer with lunch until I provide documentary evidence of my age.  It is galling that paper documents are more important than my word.  This is just one more piece of evidence that our society is unstable, disintegrating, oppressive and no longer civil.  As Joseph Tainter observed, societies tend to become more and more complex, until they collapse because of the complexity.  I must now show a government-issued ID to purchase a beer with my meal in Chicago.  How sad, and how revealing.

 

It is nice that the world is not totally under fascist control to the point where personal freedoms are tightly restricted.  When I arrived in Monrovia, Liberia (via Brussels, after leaving Chicago), I handed the hotel desk clerk a security wallet (containing a credit card and over a thousand dollars – over two thousand on my earlier trip) for him to place in the hotel safe.  I asked, “Do I need a receipt?”  He responded, “No, of course not, we know you.”  How refreshing that a man’s word is his bond, and that there was trust that when I claimed my wallet, my spoken word was all that was needed.  Because of mass immigration and the resulting social instability, this level of personal trust has disappeared in the US.  Everything must be documented, even down to the level of ordering a beer with lunch.  When I was in Haiti some years ago, I checked into a small hotel in the town of Jacmel.  There was no lock on my room door – no lock, no key, no deadbolt, no chain – just a simple doorknob.  I asked the lady who was showing me to my room about this.  She laughed, and told me that there was no need for a lock on my door.  There wasn’t.  Life in a stable society is comforting.

 

Loss of Freedom from Confiscation of Property without Due Process

 

Since the establishment of the personal income tax in 1913, the government has made good use of the “Tax Court,” which can strip US citizens of their property without due process.  A friend of mine recently had his property confiscated without due process over a tax dispute.  The government sent him a notice that he owed $5,000 in taxes.  He did not, and so he refused to pay.  The government then proceeded to freeze his bank account and take the $5,000.  His bank account was not accessible until the government had confiscated the demanded amount.  With respect to tax disputes, the burden of proof is on the individual – you are assumed guilty until you prove your innocence.  Do you keep your money in a bank?  If you do, you had better plan for a contingency plan for the day on which the government freezes your bank account and you have no access to your funds until you do as it says.  See former Congressman George Hansen’s book, To Harass Our People: The IRS and Government Abuse of Power (1985), for a lot more on government abuse of power.

 

Alienation of the US People from the Government

 

Over the past century, a major shift has occurred in the relationship between the US government and the US middle class.  This section discusses this change in some detail.  The section is divided into a number of subsections presented in approximate order of importance.  The discussion is not intended to be comprehensive, but simply to highlight a number of major areas.

 

This section identifies a number of ways in which the quality of life has been impaired for the US middle class by US government policies.  Since government policies have had a dramatic effect on diminishing the quality of life in many different areas, many of the topics mentioned in this section are also addressed in other sections, in a more general sense (relating to the decline of the US, but independent of their effect on alienation from the US government).

 

A considerable portion of this section deals with the subject of mass immigration.  The reason for this is that mass immigration (legal or illegal) has been the principal cause of many of the ills facing the US, and is a primary reason for its imminent collapse.  Many works have been written on this topic, and the references cited at the end of the book represent but a small fraction of the total literature on this topic.  The subject is a fascinating one because most Americans do not want mass immigration and recognize it as the major factor contributing to the decline in their quality of life, yet the US government has persisted for decades in cramming it down their throats.  (Mass immigration may be viewed simply as an aspect of globalization, or it may be considered separately as a part of the larger problem of destruction of US environment, culture and quality of life of the US middle class.)

 

The US Government No Longer Obeys Its Own Laws

 

The US Government Refuses to Obey the Constitution’s Mandate to Defend the Country from Invasion

 

The US government no longer obeys its own laws.  It picks and chooses which ones it wants to enforce.  This is not just a minor infringement, such as ignoring fraternity-house drinking, or failing to collect sales taxes from a neighborhood garage sale, or failing to enforce “no-loitering” signs.  It is a flagrant, blatant violation of fundamental laws and responsibilities.  The major example of this is massive illegal immigration, which is destroying the quality of life of the middle class and the country’s security.  Illegal immigration is illegal – against the law – but the US government chooses not to enforce this law.  In fact, many of its policies encourage and promote continued and increased illegal immigration.  The US president takes an oath to uphold the US Constitution and defend the country from invasion.  He is bound by oath to prevent the invasion of illegal aliens, but he does nothing.  The current US president, George W. Bush, is guilty of treason in his inactions and actions with respect to illegal immigration.  He could immediately stop virtually all illegal immigration in a week or so by taking any number of measures, such as by placing machine guns along our southern border with Mexico.  Instead, he does nothing.  He refuses to enforce laws against illegal immigration, he condones giving social and economic benefits to illegal aliens, he supports the jailing of border patrol agents who are effective in doing their jobs, he supports birthright citizenship for babies born to criminal alien invaders of our country, and he supports giving illegal aliens amnesty and a “path to citizenship.”

 

It is not just George W. Bush who, as US president, has condoned, supported and encouraged mass illegal immigration, but every president since Dwight D. Eisenhower.  It is not just the US presidents who support illegal immigration, but also most members of Congress.  Our recent presidents and congressional leaders have condoned the invasion of the United States by millions of illegal aliens.  An estimated 12 to 20 million illegal aliens now reside in the US, plus millions more of their birthright-citizenship children.  This is a massive invasion.  It is destroying the culture and the country.  And the US president and most political leaders condone it or actively support it.

 

The US Government Aids and Abets Illegal Aliens

 

Recently, former-Governor Eliot Spitzer of New York attempted to give New York driver’s licenses to illegal aliens.  This is completely illegal, since it aids and abets the staying of illegal aliens in the US.  The federal government took no steps to stop him or even oppose him.  Once again, the motive for this move was money.  At the present time, businesses cannot use illegal-alien drivers for their vehicles, since standard automobile insurance does not cover them.  But if the illegal aliens are issued driver’s licenses by the state, then insurance claims cannot be denied by the insurance companies for accidents caused by illegal-alien drivers.  As is the case in many other sectors of the economy, the government is placing US middle class citizens in direct competition with foreigners earning a fraction of their wages.  Spitzer’s attempt to grant driver’s licenses to illegal aliens was not only blatantly illegal, but it would also have caused serious economic harm to US citizens who are professional drivers.  It could have led to massive voter fraud, since a driver’s license is now accepted in many instances as proof of residency (following passage of “motor-voter” laws by many states).  Apart from being of direct benefit to illegal aliens, including terrorists, it benefits only the wealthy elite.

 

The economic harm that would have been caused to US citizens was bad enough, but that would have been a minor cost compared to the fact that the governor of New York was flaunting the law in aiding and abetting illegal aliens, and the federal government was quite complicit in his actions.  Our leaders (political, religious and other) are in thrall to the wealthy elite and want illegal aliens to stay in the US.  They want to continue to provide them social and economic benefits (paid for mainly by the US middle class), birthright citizenship for their children born in the US, amnesty for their crime, and a path to US citizenship.  Illegal aliens cause much economic harm to US citizens, who must compete with their low wages.  They cause much harm to the quality of life of US citizens, through overcrowding and the destruction of natural land caused to create space and provide infrastructure for them.  Each year, illegal aliens kill more US citizens (by murder and accidents) than US soldiers die in the war in Iraq.

 

Spitzer pressed hard for driver’s licenses for illegal aliens, and the US government did nothing to deter him.  Public anger grew over this outrage, however, to the point where the governor eventually had to back down.  An important voice in bringing attention to this issue and continuing to focus on it was Lou Dobbs, on his television program CNN’s Lou Dobbs Tonight.

 

In its campaign in support of more illegal immigration, the government tells many lies, promotes many deceptions, and engages in many subterfuges.  One of Spitzer’s deceptions was that the roads would be safer if illegal aliens were licensed.  This is so misleading!  In his assertion, he is implicitly assuming the premise that the illegal aliens should be here.  The roads would be far safer if the illegal aliens were simply deported, as, under the law, they should be!  If the illegal aliens were not present, the issue of granting lenses to them would be irrelevant.  Considering the issuance of driver’s licenses to illegal aliens is absurd.  Can you imagine how many other countries in the world are considering this issue?  None!  In the eyes of the world’s nations, the US a bizarre laughing stock for allowing this to happen – the US people, that is, whose culture, environment and quality of life are being destroyed – not the US government, which is willingly throwing all of this away in its quest to serve the wealthy elite.  (See Peter Brimelow’s Alien Nation (1995) for more on this.)

 

It was recently reported (CNN’s Lou Dobbs Tonight, 7 April 2008) that law enforcement personnel in Arizona have a policy of releasing illegal-alien drug smugglers caught with less than 500 pounds of illegal drugs in their possession.  It was reported that, under this policy, 99.6 percent of all drug smugglers are released – a prosecution rate of .4 percent!  Once again, the government is simply refusing to enforce the country’s laws.  Can you imagine – all this in the face of the imprisonment of two Border Patrol agents on the testimony of an illegal-alien drug smuggler, and President Bush’s stubborn refusal to pardon the imprisoned agents.  The criminalization of drugs and the resultant “war on drugs” generates massive amounts of economic activity, and the government works hard to keep it alive and well.

 

If the world situation had instantly changed dramatically, you might expect that, in an emergency or knee-jerk reaction the government might temporarily fail to enforce some laws.  But the blatant refusal of the government to enforce immigration laws has been going on for decades on a massive scale.  The most serious aspect of it is that it is being done solely for the benefit of the wealthy elite who run the country, at the expense of the middle class.  The quality of life for the rich continues to rise, as they become ever more wealthy, and the quality of life for the American middle class is being destroyed as a direct result.  The most important wealth that the US middle class possessed was a low population density in a land abundant in natural beauty.  The joy from that wealth – the land and nature – could have lasted for eons.  But it is now largely gone, and frequent enjoyment of it is out of reach of the average citizen.  The US government and the wealthy who control it have destroyed this for the US middle class.

 

Civil Rights and Affirmative Action; Malcolm X

 

Some History of Affirmative Action (Racial Preferences)

 

In 1964 the US government passed comprehensive civil rights legislation.  In the years that followed, it passed an elaborate and oppressive system of “affirmative action,” or “positive,” or “reverse” discrimination.  The objective of this legislation was to give blacks an advantage to “make up for” the oppression and discrimination that they or their ancestors had experienced in the US over the past centuries.  At first, the concept was to provide equal opportunity for the blacks (and other minorities, as the law was extended to include about every group except able white heterosexual males).  As time passed, it became clear that equality of opportunity did not translate into equality of outcome, which is in fact what the government wanted.   When it turned out that blacks made limited progress under the “equal opportunity” concept, the system was changed to a de facto quota system – if a firm did not have proportional representation of minorities, this situation was taken as prima facie evidence of discrimination – the firm is guilty until proved innocent.  At that point, whites saw a noticeable number of jobs, contracts and college admissions being awarded to minorities, including some who were less able, and resentment mounted.

 

When affirmative action began, the largest minority in the country was blacks, and they represented about ten percent of the population.  Affirmative action had the immediate effect of alienating 90 percent of the population, to provide special privileges to ten percent.  Because of the small numbers of blacks, however, this situation was “manageable.”  Under mass immigration, however, the proportion of minorities began to swell.  Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans and other groups were included in the definition of protected minorities.  When females were defined to be “minorities” for the purpose of affirmative action, white males became a small minority themselves, forced to “stand in line” behind all others.  The system of affirmative action caused massive resentment, and among the country’s most able – and aggressive – class.

 

Today, while the economic picture has improved dramatically for blacks, they still lag behind whites in income and wealth. (As Noam Chomsky has pointed out (in The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many (1993)), much of the “racial” difference is in fact attributable to class differences, but it is not politically correct to acknowledge class differences in the United States.)  Despite almost half a century of affirmative action, blacks have still not achieved parity, and the government’s program of reverse discrimination continues.  They stand out among all other racially or ethnically defined minority groups, such as Jews and Asians, in this respect.  An unfortunate aspect of this is that they assert that their continued inability to achieve parity, even after two generations of affirmative action, is due to racism and racial discrimination.  Senator Barack Obama’s recent speech (March 18, 2008) on racism in America added fuel to the fire.  After a half century of standing aside to provide special privileges to blacks, white America is fed up.  It does not want to hear continued whining about racism, when the US government has discriminated against the once-dominant majority (white males) for half a century.  Enough is enough.

 

The United States was not founded for blacks, Asians, Hispanics, French, Catholics, Jews, Moslems, Asians or any other minority.  It was founded by and for white Anglo-Saxon Protestants.  As Chomsky observed (op. cit.), “Thomas Jefferson’s goal, at the very left-liberal end of the spectrum, was to create a country ‘free of blot or mixture’ – meaning no red Indians, no black people, just good white Anglo-Saxons.  That’s what the liberals wanted.  They didn’t succeed.  They did pretty much get rid of the native population – they almost succeeded in ‘exterminating’ them (as they put it in those days) – but they couldn’t get rid of the black population, and over time they’ve had to incorporate them in some fashion into society.”  The white citizens of the United States have done much to accommodate other minorities.  They abolished slavery.  They have given them equal representation in Congress.  They have gone to great lengths to include them in the economy.  They have granted minorities special privileges and grants-in-aid that are not available to themselves.  As the controlling majority in a country founded by their ancestors, they did not have to do any of these things.  No one held a gun to their heads.  They were gracious to do so.  It is high time for the whining to stop.

 

US blacks have not fought for their freedom.  They did not force whites to set them free, and the  “fight” for black civil rights was in fact a peaceful supplication (nonviolent protest / demonstration).  Haiti’s blacks rebelled in the early 1800’s and slaughtered their former masters, the white plantation owners.  Their former masters had no choice in granting the slaves’ freedom – the slaves took it.  Their freedom was gained on the field of battle, and was unequivocally earned.  The message from this history that anyone who tries to take their freedom away will be killed.  The Mau Maus in Kenya acted similarly – they slaughtered their white masters until they got fed up and relinquished control or left.  US blacks, in contrast, did not gain their freedom from slavery by their own efforts or will, but were granted freedom by the whites.  The US blacks gained their freedom not from their own combat, but from whites fighting whites in the US’ bloodiest war – the War Between the States – in which a million citizens died.  Because they did not establish their freedom by forcing their former masters to set them free, they will never feel free.  They can take pride in many things, including their suffering and endurance, and they can take pride in the fact that their race has survived for a million years, but they cannot take pride in having been granted freedom instead of taking it.  (At some point, they may take pride in inheriting the Earth – along with the Jews?  the Russians?  the Synarchists?)   If you take your freedom by force, your former master will respect you.  If he grants you your freedom, he will always remember that you are free by his choice, not by your will, power, or action.  You will never have significant respect, either from your former master or from anyone else.

 

When I worked in Zambia a few years ago, the local people took pride in the fact that their ancestors successfully resisted Shaka’s Zulus, in the latter’s war of conquest in the nineteenth century.  This is a defining characteristic of their culture.  They make sure that you know it.  The descendents of Shaka’s Zulus make sure that you know that they defeated the British in the first major engagement.  In today’s pacifist world people may speak disapprovingly of war, but all peoples take pride in the courage and battles of their ancestors.

 

The key to respect is being willing to kill and to die to acquire and defend your freedom.  It does not necessarily have to be on the battlefield, but this is an unequivocal way of establishing your will and ability.  The Jews conquered America by cunning without the use of arms (which would have been ineffective), but they are demonstrably willing to kill and to die for their cause (Zionism).  Their approach was very effective, and they can take pride in their accomplishment.  They wanted Palestine and they took it.  They needed the US to further their cause and defend it, and so they conquered it, too.  They do not beg for their homeland – they kill for it.  (While I have admiration for their Machiavellian ways, I have contempt for their hypocrisy.  They have no problem in visiting genocide on others – a practice which is enshrined in their holy books – but they whine when genocide is visited upon them, as in Hitler’s Germany.  What is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.  They founded the modern state of Israel using the tools of assassination, terrorism and ethnic cleansing but they complain bitterly of the use of terrorism by others against them.  They make use of assassination and apartheid as tools to further their state, yet they cry “foul” at the use of these tools by others against them.  They pressed for mass immigration from all cultures into the US (the Immigration Act of 1965), but adamantly refuse to allow mass migration of non-Jews to Israel (or allow any level of migration of non-Jews to Israel).)   (See references in the section on Fractionated Culture.)

 

Malcolm X’s Views on Affirmative Action

 

In the twentieth century, US blacks gained additional civil rights by passive means, under the leadership of Martin Luther King, Jr.  Malcolm X had a lot to say about this approach.  The following quotations are from Malcolm X’s speeches from the recording (tape cassette and compact disk) Malcolm X: An NPRâ Presentation (P) 1992 by Dove Audio, 301 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210).

 

“No Negro leaders have fought for civil rights.  They have begged for civil rights.  They have begged the white man for civil rights.  They have begged the white man for freedom.  And any time you beg another man to set you free, you will never be free.  Freedom is something that you have to do for yourselves.  And until the American Negro lets the white man know that we are really really ready and willing to pay the price that is necessary for freedom, our people will always be walking around here second-class citizens, or what you call twentieth-century slaves.”

 

“It’s not so good to refer to what you are going to do as a sit-in.  That right there castrates you.  Right there it brings you down.  What goes with it?  Think of the image of someone sitting.  An old woman can sit.  An old man can sit.  A chump can sit.  A coward can sit.  Anything can sit.  Well, you and I have been sitting long enough, and it’s time today for us to start doing some standing, and some fighting to back that up.”

 

“This is part of what’s wrong with you.  You do too much singing.  Today it’s time to stop singing and start swinging.  There’ll be a hot time in the old town, with regret, with great regret….  It looks like it might be the year of the ballot or the bullet.”

 

Malcolm X realized that a culture can never be truly free, be unequivocally proud of its heritage, and command general respect unless its ancestors earned their freedom on the field of battle.  If someone “gives” you your freedom, it is assumed that he can just as well take it away, and you are not free at all.  You are free by the grace of your former master, and at best, you are “conditionally” free – apparently free, but not unequivocally free.  But other US Negroes did not want to hear this, and so they killed Malcolm X.  He was the most charismatic, powerful, on-the-mark Negro leader ever to emerge in the US, and he was gunned down by his own people (or would it be more correct to say by black Islamists?).

 

Americans are chagrined at hearing charges of discrimination and racism from American blacks, who have been the beneficiaries of reverse discrimination – economic and political largesse – for over four decades.  Two full generations of US blacks have been given tremendous opportunity and assists, and yet some of their leaders continue to complain of their shoddy treatment of yesterday and poor station of today.  One cannot help but notice that some other nonwhite minorities, such as Jews and Asians, have done just fine, with or without affirmative action, and despite earlier oppression (e.g., the use of Chinese coolies to construct the US railroad system).  Perhaps it is time for black leaders to start pointing a finger at current black culture, or at continued participation in an emasculating and family-destroying affirmative action program, as possible reasons why US blacks as a whole continue to fare poorly after decades of affirmative action.  Over the years, I have worked with many blacks in Africa who were quite capable – and proud.  I know that they are to some extent puzzled and chagrined and embarrassed that, after forty years of affirmative action, their brothers and sisters in the US still complain of their poor treatment and station in the US.  (They cannot be too vocal in this criticism, however, in view of the fact that most “black” countries are heavily dependent on international economic and humanitarian assistance (most of it caused, of course, from the massive debt resulting from compound-interest loans from the developed world).)  Today’s US blacks would do well to look to the example set by Malcolm X.  He didn’t complain – he blasted!  He heaped scorn on sit-ins and other passive-resistance actions.  He commanded respect.  In any event, the US government’s handling of civil rights, and its implementation of affirmative action, has generated much hostility among the once-dominant culture of white Protestants.

 

(Malcolm X had interesting views on the divine nature of the races.  He attributed the problem between blacks and whites to the fact that the white race is inherently evil.  This would appear to align with the views of Zulu sangoma (sanusi, shaman) Credo Mutwa and others that the whites are Nordic or Nordic-Reptilian aliens (mzungus), and the blacks (mudugavus) are true natives of Earth.)

 

The US Government Punishes Native US Citizens and Lets Illegal Aliens Flaunt the Law

 

Illegal aliens are criminals.  They are criminal invaders.  They have willfully violated US law and invaded our country.  Not only does the US government refuse to deport them, but it welcomes them, provides them benefits, and encourages them to come and to stay.  Police are routinely forbidden to ask people their legal status.  Border patrol agents such as Ignacio Ramos and José Compean, who are effective in doing their jobs, are jailed – in this outrageous case on the testimony of a criminal alien-invader drug smuggler who was given immunity from prosecution to testify against them.  Illegal aliens are given medical care at our emergency rooms, and nothing is done when they do not pay for these services.  They have babies by the hundreds of thousands in our hospitals.  Not only do they routinely not pay for the medical bills, but our government grants their children – the children of criminal invaders of our country – birthright citizenship.  For years, illegal aliens have entered time and time again, and they are simply released.  They were deported only for crimes other than illegal immigration!  If they were deported and they returned, they were simply deported again.  No effective action has been taken by our government to stem the flow of illegal aliens.

 

But what if a US citizen breaks the law?  This is quite a different story.  He is punished to the full extent of the law.  An illegal alien invades our country and is ultimately responsible for the destruction of an acre of natural land, through its conversion to infrastructure to accommodate his presence.  The US government rewards him by granting birthright citizenship to his children born in this country.  An illegal alien is a heavy-duty criminal, but the US government rewards him with free economic, social and medical services – as well as living space and use of infrastructure and citizenship for his progeny.  But a US citizen who breaks the law and is caught is invariably punished – he is expected to obey all the laws.  The US government treats illegal aliens better than its own citizens.  Why would it do this?  Because this benefits the wealthy ruling elite.  The US has adopted a policy of growth-based economics.  It wants the population to grow by about one percent every year, because this generates more income and wealth for the wealthy elite.  It wants untrammeled immigration because this supports globalization.  It does not matter to the government or the wealthy elite that the land is being destroyed, that American culture is being destroyed, and that the US middle class is being destroyed.  All the government and its wealthy masters care about is the money, and more illegal aliens mean more money.  Every quarter, the US President crows about increased employment and other measures of growth, such as new-home starts.  Growth, growth, growth.  That is all that matters to the government and its masters.  Growth that is destroying the biosphere.  Growth that is placing billions of people in abject poverty.  Growth that is leading the country and the world to total destruction.  How long will this insanity continue?

 

The US government maintains a double standard.  It refuses to deter, apprehend and deport illegal alien invaders, while hunting down, prosecuting and punishing US citizens to the fullest extent of the law.  Figure that one out!  It would appear that the general policy of the US government is that only citizens can be lawbreakers.  (This would appear to complement its policy that only whites can be racist.)

 

The government wants mass immigration period, whether legal or illegal.  It actually prefers to have a certain level of illegal immigration, because this serves US business interests (illegal aliens are criminals-on-the-run and as such are much easier to control and may be paid less).  In any event, the government has adopted a population policy of a population growth rate of about one percent per year, or about three million per year, of which two thirds is currently illegal immigration.  If the electorate is in fact able to shame the government into cracking down on illegal immigration (e.g., because it is such a blatant, hypocritical and contemptuous display of total disregard for the law on the part of the government), the government simply boosts the amount of legal immigration or implements amnesty (the current euphemism being “a path to citizenship”).  It has been following this policy for decades.  Our immigration system is an open doorway – actually, a revolving doorway for those few who are deported, since they easily return.  The US government processes immigrants, who destroy our country, environment and culture, as fast as it possible can.  It is hard to imagine that the US government could process legal immigrants any faster than is currently being done – about a million a year!

 

US citizens are being imprisoned for terms of many years – up to life imprisonment – for crimes such as having sex with minors, operating poker machines, and using psychotropic drugs such as marijuana.  It even imprisons Border Patrol agents who are effective in doing their jobs.  But illegal aliens commit their criminal act of invasion of our country with impunity.  They are given free medical care, their children are given citizenship and free education and medical care, and recently, former-Governor Eliot Spitzer of New York tried to reward them with New York State driver’s licenses.

 

In my home town of Spartanburg, a local restaurant owner was recently arrested for operating poker machines.  But 20 million illegal aliens – serious criminals every one – not only go free, but are given free social, educational and medical services – and birthright citizenship for their children!  The US government has indeed declared war on its own citizens.  The US government is a cancer, nurtured by the wealthy elite, that is destroying the culture on which the country was founded (government of, by and for the people), the environment (by the conversion of natural land to infrastructure and the burning of fossil fuel to accommodate increased population), and the quality of life for the middle class (by the many effects of overcrowding caused by mass immigration, massive international free trade, open borders, and growth-based economics (e.g., diminished security, long commutes, loss of natural beauty, massive increase in the cost of land and access to nature, and increased work hours (both parents now in the competitive labor force))).

 

The US government promotes offering in-state college tuition to illegal aliens.  That is a privilege that is denied every US citizen who is not a legal resident of a state.  If a US citizen tries to obtain in-state tuition from a state of which he is not a resident, he will be charged with fraud and go to jail.  Illegal aliens get free medical care at emergency rooms of US hospitals, yet US citizens have to pay exorbitant amounts for medical care (increased to some extent by the provision of free care to the illegal aliens and increased massively by US government policies aimed at enriching the medical establishment).  The US middle class is forced to pay, through taxes, for free social, educational and medical services to illegal aliens.

 

It was recently reported by the Heritage Foundation that a US Government Accountability Office (GAO) study reported that three percent of voters in the US are illegal aliens.  Because of the massive numbers of illegal aliens in Arizona, Texas and Florida, those states may be entitled to two, two and three more representatives than if the illegal aliens were not present (and other states would lose this number of representatives.  The US Census does not ask citizenship status.

 

The US Government Has Destroyed Security, to Generate More Wealth for the Wealthy Elite; Free Trade / Open Borders / Mass Immigration

 

In order to generate more wealth for the wealthy elite, the US government long ago adopted policies of massive international free trade, mass immigration, and open borders.  Our country is no longer secure.  Our borders are not secure.  Our ports are not secure.  A half-century ago, most goods and people entering the country were inspected.  Now, most goods are not inspected at all.  Most of the toys purchased in the US are manufactured in Communist China, many using lead paint.  About 40 percent of our food is now produced overseas, often in countries such as Communist China, under terrible environmental conditions (unsanitary conditions, sick workers, flagrant misuse of pesticides and herbicides or banned products such as DDT).  This does not bother the US government at all.  It generates more money for the wealthy elite.  The fact that the US middle class become ill, lose their jobs, or see their quality of life diminish is not a concern to the government.  The wealthy can order wild salmon from Scotland, but the middle class must consume tilapia raised in sewage in Communist China.  In flagrant violation of the law, the government does not require country-of-origin labeling of food, so that US consumers are prevented from seeing where their food comes from.  The policies of the WTO promote these vile practices, to further international trade and increased wealth for the wealthy elite.

 

Last year (2007), the government approved the sale of our ports to the Dubai Ports World, an entity of the United Arab Emirates.  The public outrage over this was so strong that the government felt compelled to eventually cancel the deal (the limit of Hume’s Paradox was reached).  The US public was not blind, however, to the cause of this debacle.  It is now patently clear to even the least discerning citizen that the security of the US middle class is not a concern of the US government.  The government claims to be waging an exquisitely costly war in Iraq in order to keep the war on terrorism “over there” instead of on our own territory.  With our open borders and lack of security of our ports, however, it is just a matter of time until a terrorist group imports a nuclear suitcase bomb and annihilates an American city.  The US government allows the immigration of one to two million illegal aliens each year, and another million legal immigrants from alien cultures all over the world.  It is just a matter of time until another “9/11” occurs, or much worse – the loss of traditional American culture.  The government does not care about this.  It sees only the wealth that an active “war on terror” generates for the wealthy elite who own weapons-manufacturing firms and security-equipment and security-service firms.  The US middle class must pay for this war caused directly by the policies of greed of its leaders.  This is straight out of George Orwell’s 1984.  The US government loves the “War on Terror,” keeping the country in a continual state of anxiety and alert against an ever-present enemy.  To pay for this, however, in most families both parents must now work in the competitive labor market, just to make ends meet, and their children must be in industrial day care from birth on.  This was not true 50 years ago.  It has been brought about by the policies of greed of the wealthy elite who control the US government.

 

The attitude of the US government toward a terrorist attack is the same as its attitude toward the Katrina Hurricane disaster in New Orleans, or the attack on the Twin Towers.  It knew full well about the high likelihood of these events in advance.  Terrorists had already attacked the Twin Towers several years earlier, and a US government report stated that massive devastation (flooding) would definitely occur in New Orleans as soon as a category 5 hurricane struck – just a matter of time.  Yet the government chose to do nothing about either event.  In fact, under its policies, the Moslems / Arabs / Egyptians who flew the airplanes into the Twin Towers were granted visas and were provided, quite legally and in the US, training in flying of large airplanes.  Why would the US government do such a thing – not prepare for anticipated disasters – when it knew that they were likely?  The reason is always the same – the money.  The cost of repairing the damage is far greater than the cost of preventing it.  Since, under its policy of growth-based economics, the government is in the business of increasing gross domestic product (GDP), it actually prefers that the disaster be very costly, to generate more business opportunities for the wealthy elite, in reconstruction.  It can’t admit to this, of course, any more than it can admit that it is in favor of illegal immigration; or that its policies of massive international free trade, mass immigration and open borders are destroying the culture, the environment, and the quality of life for the middle class; or that democracy is a complete sham, a “virtual” system controlled by the wealthy to dupe the people into thinking that they are in charge.  Lies, lies, lies.  When will the American people wake up to these crude deceptions?

 

It is likely that “terrorist”-delivered nuclear weapons will eventually explode on one or more US cities.  When that happens, the US government will doubtless claim that it could not have been foreseen or prevented, and that it did everything that it could to prevent it.  This is totally false.  Our current state of vulnerability has been caused by decades of US government policies of massive international free trade, mass immigration and open borders.  The US government will not do anything that will stop the generation of vast wealth from massive free trade, mass immigration and open borders.  It could stop illegal immigration totally, within a week or so, simply by arming the border with Mexico.  It could deport all illegal aliens and their progeny in a few weeks, simply by rounding them up and placing them in concentration camps, or by making illegal immigration a capital crime.  But it will not do any of these things, because it wants the flow of millions of Mexicans, Central Americans and South Americans (or people from somewhere else) across the border each year.

 

US government leaders claim that it is not “humanitarian” or “practical” or “morally right” to take any of these security measures, but this is a complete lie – nations go to war and kill soldiers and civilians at the drop of a hat, to protect their economic interests.  The US bombed German cities near the end of World War II, and dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the war with Japan was clearly won.  Some leaders assert that mass deportation is not “realistic” – why is it that allowing mass illegal invasion is?  The Constitution does not say that the president and other leaders should defend the country from invasion only if it is considered “humanitarian” to do so; or that invaders should be allowed to remain if it is not considered “practical” to deport them or to do anything else to eliminate them; or that they should be allowed to stay because we are a “nation of immigrants.”  It explicitly, unequivocally, and unambiguously states it is a fundamental duty to do so.  The US is the only country in the world that allows millions of people to invade it, and then does nothing (except to support them).  Through this action, the US is committing cultural suicide – and the death of the country will soon follow.  In refusing to defend the country from invasion, and in aiding and abetting the invasion of the US by 12-20 million illegal alien invaders, our leaders are guilty of high treason.  This invasion was not beyond their control: it has been enabled by them.  They are guilty of high treason, and should be on the gallows.

 

The US government will build ineffective fences in parts of the border, so that the flow of illegal aliens is not stanched.  It will say much and will take many actions that appear to be against illegal immigration, but they will all be ineffective.  These actions are in fact doubly effective in achieving the government’s goals: (1) they make it appear that the government is doing something about the problem; and (2) they transfer massive amounts of money from the US taxpayer to the wealthy elite, to pay for them.  But they do nothing to stop the flow of illegal aliens.  The US government will spend billions on programs that will not work, when it could spend virtually nothing (using existing military machine guns and soldiers) to accomplish the job.  Why?  Because mass immigration generates massive wealth for the wealthy elite, and because making massive expenditures on ineffective programs is even better for the wealthy elite than doing nothing at all.  But who pays for this?  The US middle class.  Two ways – in taxes to pay for these expensive and ineffective programs, and in the loss of their country, environment and culture to the alien invaders.

 

It was announced recently (23 April 2008) that a $20 million section of fence along the US/Mexico border in Arizona was being scrapped, just two months after it had been accepted (on February 22).  It was a “virtual” fence, consisting of nine electronic surveillance towers along a 28-mile section of border southwest of Tucson.  The government has announced that it will now build a better “virtual” fence.  Why?  Why bother with a virtual fence, when far less costly means, such as machine-gun nests would be far more effective and far less costly.  Because the government does not want it to work.  It simply wants to spend money on ineffective “virtual” fences so that it appears to be doing something to combat illegal immigration but in reality so that the immigrant flow continues unimpeded and much money is transferred from the middle-class taxpayer to the wealthy elite (both from immigration and from building virtual fences that do not work).  It also prefers “high-tech” fences – virtual or physical – to low-cost (and more effective) machine guns, as they are very much more expensive, and therefore contribute significantly to increasing the gross national product (and keep the US middle class working longer and harder to pay for them).  Why does no one ever ask why the government spends billions on fences that don’t work, when a few low-cost machine guns would protect the border very well?  To the government, its ineffective and costly solution makes perfect sense – they don’t stop illegal immigration and their construction and operation and maintenance generate lots of economic activity and wealth for the wealthy elite.  But how is it that the US citizens who see their country, environment and culture being destroyed by these sham efforts do not take the government to task?  When will America awaken?

 

The US government allows – induces – millions of illegal aliens to invade our country, and then tells companies that it will fine them if they employ them.  Huh?  Recently (August, 2008), the US government initiated a “self-deportation” program, under which illegal aliens would be provided free transportation back home if they turned themselves in.  After 10 days of the program, six people had applied.  Does the arrogance of our government in proposing such measures not make your blood boil?

 

How stupid does the US government think that the US people are?  Why is it that none of the crucial problems facing society today are solved, when many of them could be solved very easily (e.g., illegal immigration)?  It is because the US government does not want to solve them.  In furthering its mission to enrich the wealthy and enslave the poor, it makes effective use of democracy.  It uses the “paralysis” of democracy to make it appear that it is trying to do something, yet nothing appears to be possible (this is an example of the so-called “tyranny of the minority” that is achieved by fractionating the population through mass immigration).  The amazing thing is, however, that traditional-culture Americans stand idly by doing nothing, while the US government destroys their culture, quality of life, and freedom.

 

The middle class loses still another way.  In his book, Civil Liberties and American Democracy (1984), John Brigham lists the three most likely threats to constitutional democracy in America: from Elites, from the People, and from the Experts.  Through its massive “make work” projects, such as the war in Iraq and ineffective but costly measures against illegal immigration, the US government is transferring vast wealth to the wealthy elite from the middle class (which has to pay the taxes to pay for these projects).  This not only reduces the standard of living and quality of life for the middle class, but it greatly increases the income and wealth gap between the rich and the middle class, thereby transferring political power from the people to the wealthy elite.

 

The main reason why there is so much illegal immigration is that the US government has failed to process legal immigrants as fast as it would have liked – it is already processing them at the rate of a million a year, and would be embarrassed to process three million a year.  As part of its commitment to growth-based economics, the US government has adopted a policy of one percent population growth per year – three million immigrants a year, legal or illegal – and it is not going to permit anything to stand in its way – even the US middle class.

 

A law was passed several years ago requiring country-of-origin labeling on all food products.  But the wealthy elite do not want this.  They want to mix a little US hamburger meat in with 99 percent foreign hamburger meat, and represent that it as a US product.  They want US consumers to continue to consume tilapia raised in Communist Chinese sewage ponds, and not be able to avoid this by reading a country-of-origin label.  Almost all apple juice sold in the US is imported from Communist China (except for Marzelli’s, which is difficult to find in Spartanburg).  The US government does not want the consumer to know this.  Many US consumers would like to know which food products were produced in the US, so that they can be assured that it has been grown under strict US regulations.  Contaminated catfish is imported from Communist China.  The US consumer would like to see country-of-origin labels on food and other products, so that it can assess its safety.  But no, the US government is more concerned with the health of US trade with Communist China than with the health of the US citizen.   It will not take any actions that will lessen trade with Communist China.  It will not take effective action to ban contaminated food, because the treatment of illness caused by contaminated products means “big bucks” for the US medical establishment (and big payments to investigate the sources of food-poisoning outbreaks).  The US government does not want US consumers to know, because that might reduce consumption of foreign food and thereby reduce international trade, which benefits the rich.  So who gets screwed?  The US consumer.  The US middle class.  The US government sold out to the rich decades ago, and is not about to change.

 

With twelve to twenty million illegal aliens in the country, identity theft is rampant.  The US government does not care about this.  Massive levels of identity theft generate massive fees for lawyers and credit-protection firms.  (When the US government passed the Social Security Act of 1933, it promised that it would never allow use of the Social Security Number as a general personal identifier.  It reneged on this promise.)  The high cost, anxiety and substantial loss of time required to address problems caused by identity theft (they rarely can be addressed easily or quickly, or cleared up totally) are not a concern for the US government.  If they were, it would not promote the mass immigration that has destabilized our society and destroyed our culture and environment.  Instead, it gloats over the increase in gross domestic product required to address the problems that its policies have caused.  Who pays?  The US middle class.  Who benefits?  The wealthy elite who own the country.

 

Illegal Aliens Are Killing, Maiming and Murdering US Citizens on a Massive Scale

 

If you assume that the murder rates, assault rates, and accident rates for illegal aliens are the same as for US citizens – and this is a very “conservative” assumption, in view of the fact that all illegal aliens are criminals, many of them are poor drivers, and many of them have no qualms about drinking and driving – then a quick calculation shows that illegal aliens are killing and maiming US citizens in numbers substantially greater than the death toll for US soldiers in Iraq.  Why does our government permit this?  To make money for the wealthy elite, who benefit from mass immigration – illegal or otherwise.  Deaths and injuries to US citizens are of no concern to the US government, as long as it generates more money for the wealthy elite (which it does! – vehicle repairs / replacements, litigation, and medical costs).

 

The problem of illegal aliens killing and maiming US citizens is now so severe that an organization has been set up to focus attention on the problem: Mothers Against Illegal Aliens.  Its website is located at Internet address http://www.mothersagainstillegalaliens.org .

 

The invasion of illegal aliens is destroying our natural land, our wildlife, our environment, our culture, and the quality of life for the US middle class, who are being crowding out of their own living space.  Illegal aliens are slaughtering and maiming US citizens at the rate of thousands every year.  The US president took an oath to defend the US Constitution and protect the country from alien invasion.  Instead, he actively promotes it.  The US president is guilty of high treason, dereliction of duty and gross malfeasance in office.  Every president who has promoted or allowed mass illegal immigration – Bush, Clinton, Bush Sr., Reagan, Carter, Ford, Nixon, Johnson, and Kennedy – is guilty of high treason against the American people.  Why are they not brought to justice?  Because they are doing the bidding of the wealthy elite who own the country (just recently, Bill Gates testified before Congress, pressing for large increases in visas for foreigners).  They will never be brought to justice.  They will continue to flaunt the Constitution and violate their oaths of office until the country collapses.

 

Illegal aliens are criminal invaders of our country.  Illegal aliens destroy US land (about one acre per immigrant, legal or illegal).  Illegal aliens cause death and injury for many US citizens.  Illegal aliens add to the country’s pollution and energy consumption.  Illegal aliens destroy US traditional culture.  Illegal aliens (and immigrants in general) drive up the price of commodities, such as mountain and beach property.  The fact that the US government and state and local governments condone and promote their presence, benefiting only the wealthy elite, is perhaps the strongest indicator that the US, as a society based on the founders’ principles, is dead.  Its leaders have sold out to the wealthy elite, and have turned against the middle class.

 

Never-ending War

 

As will be discussed in detail later, the US government seeks to maintain a perpetual state of war.  This makes it easy to control the population (kept in a perpetual state of anxiety about their security), and it generates massive business for the military-industrial complex.  Sometimes, wars are initiated by others (e.g., the First and Second World Wars), but many wars involving the US are initiated by the US.  The current war in Iraq is but one example.

 

Although the primary reason for the US invasion of Iraq was to obtain unrestricted access to Iraqi oil, the government did not want to appear so pecuniary in its motives, and so that it asserted that other factors were the reason for the war, such as the presence of weapons of mass destruction, freeing the Iraqi people from a cruel dictator, spreading democracy in the Middle East, and keeping the “War on Terror” “over there” (i.e., waging it mainly outside of the US).  In addition to oil, a secondary motive for the war was to provide business for the US military-industrial complex (paid for mainly by taxes from the middle class).  In this regard, this war has been very successful.

 

In addition to the cost of armaments and troop deployments, the war has been very successful in generating much business for the US medical establishment.  The government can truly say that it regrets the deaths of 5,000 US soldiers in Iraq (since it has lost this many production / consumption units), but it is shedding crocodile tears over the 30,000 horribly maimed US casualties – these soldiers will generate massive amounts of business for the US medical establishment – paid for mainly by the US middle class (which pays the bulk of the federal taxes).  Why does the US government refuse to agree to bans on antipersonnel mines and cluster bombs? – because the horrible injuries caused by these weapons generate much income for the global medical establishment (and lots of income for the wealthy-elite security firms who clear mine and cluster-bomb fields).

 

The US Is Now a Fascist Dictatorship

 

This topic – the fascism of the United States – deserves some discussion.  In conversations, I have variously referred to the United States as a plutocracy (government by the wealthy) or an oligarchy (government by a few), and this characterization never generates a response.  On the few occasions in which I have referred to the US as a fascist state, however, I invariably get a surprise response, and denial.  Quite some time ago (2003), I wrote an article, “Is America Fascist? Does It Matter?” in which I discussed this issue.  In my view, the US is a fascist state, and it is even reasonable to characterize it as a fascist dictatorship.  Here follow, with some elaboration, some excerpts from this article.

 

What is a fascist state?  What is fascism?  When I was a boy, I heard these terms a lot.  The phrase “fascist dictatorship” was often used to refer to Hitler’s Germany and Mussolini’s Italy.  But I never was told what the term really meant.  The term has also been applied to Franco’s Spain, Salazar’s Portugal, Pinochet’s Chile and many other countries.  But these are examples, not definitions.

 

At some point, I am sure that I looked up the definition, and my high-school history books no doubt included one, but I can still recall that the definition was not very satisfying, and I never really felt very certain about exactly what constituted a fascist state and what did not.  Maybe fascism is like pornography – you know it when you see it.  Maybe it is a pejorative with no fixed meaning at all.

 

With the fall of “fascist” states in the last century, the term was mainly used in an historical context.  Until recently.  All of a sudden, there seems to be a proliferation of articles decrying America as a “fascist state.”  But America has not really changed very much in recent years in its fundamental philosophy – it is a liberal democracy that embodies a capitalist, mildly regulated free-market economy.  That has not changed.  About the only major event that occurred recently was the attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.  Subsequent to that, there has been a little tightening of security restrictions, but overall, very little has been done – the US still follows a policy of mass immigration and open borders.  The economy has soured somewhat, but life for most Americans is still at a high material standard.   A few months ago [now five years ago – I wrote this text in 2003], the US invaded Iraq, but it did this subsequent to a UN resolution approving the action.  So what has changed?  How has America crossed over the fine or fuzzy line that separates a fascist state from a nonfascist state?  Was it a single action, or the sum total of a lot of little actions?  Was it the fall of the Soviet Union, so that the actions of the world’s sole remaining superpower, with little to oppose or moderate them, are automatically classified as fascist?  Or is America really changing in its fundamental character?

 

Some Background

 

Before going any further, let me present some material from some recent Internet discussions about the US and fascism.  First, some material from Thom Hartmann’s article, “Dismantling Democracy”, posted at website http://www.commondreams.org/views02/0922-06.htm  .  Hartmann writes: “Back in 1983, before its publisher was acquired by a multinational corporation, the American Heritage Dictionary left us this definition of the form of government the democracies of Spain, Italy, and Germany had morphed into during the 1930s: “fascism (fâsh'iz'em) n. A system of government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism. [Ital. fascio, group.]”

“The key is the merging of state and business leadership.

“When the United States was first declared independent in 1776, its founders knew humans had previously faced tyranny in the form of despotic kings and inquisitional churches. The Bill of Rights firmly declared that no church could ever again control a democratic government. And the Declaration of Independence made it clear right from the beginning that when citizens are burdened by ‘a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism,’ that ‘it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government….’

“Thus, the Founders and the Framers disposed of despotism by church or state, guaranteeing the absolute and inviolable rights of a nation’s citizens to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

“But there was a third entity that Thomas Jefferson and others worried may also one day rise to seize control of the government and enslave the people. James Madison wrote, ‘There is an evil which ought to be guarded against in the indefinite accumulation of property from the capacity of holding it in perpetuity by … corporations. The power of all corporations ought to be limited in this respect. The growing wealth acquired by them never fails to be a source of abuses.’ Jefferson proposed an additional amendment to the Bill of Rights to restrain corporations, calling for a Constitutional Amendment to ‘ban monopolies in commerce,’ although it failed under the Federalist opposition of the Hamilton/Adams faction.

“A few decades later, President Martin Van Buren said, ‘I am more than ever convinced of the dangers to which the free and unbiased exercise of political opinion – the only sure foundation and safeguard of republican government – would be exposed by any further increase of the already overgrown influence of corporate authorities.’ In the years since, other presidents – from Jackson to Eisenhower – have warned about the dangers to the nation if corporations were ever to take over the government.

“But, claiming that the Supreme Court ruled in 1886 that corporations are the same as natural persons and thus have rights under the 14th Amendment and the Bill of Rights (the Court ruled no such thing, but the myth persists, even in law schools), corporations have exercised human rights of free speech, privacy, and freedom from discrimination. They’ve used these human rights to seize control of the airwaves, threaten and bully politicians into promoting their agendas, hide corporate crimes, and prevent local communities from ‘discriminating’ against transnational corporations over local companies while wiping out their competitors.

“The takeover is nearly complete, and a world war will not only vastly enrich the transnationals who have perpetrated this coup, but could also mean the end of the first experiment with republican democracy in almost three thousand years.

“It’s like the magic trick in The Wizard of Oz, but this in a version written by Franz Kafka. The war hides the failures and crimes of the leaders and their friends. But behind the leaders and their friends are the real ‘men behind the screen.’ And they’re not men at all – they’re non-living, non-breathing legal fictions which have claimed the rights of humans to seize control of democracies from one side of the Atlantic to the other.

“It’s time that we, the people, recognize the damage this new corporate plutocracy has already inflicted on our lives, our biosphere, and our government. And, like the ten communities in Pennsylvania who have now passed ordinances denying corporate personhood, begin to take back our democracy before it’s lost forever in an international conflagration.”

 

[End of Hartmann extracts.]

 

In his book, What Would Jefferson Do? (2004), Hartmann writes, “Fascism was named by Italian Dictator Benito Mussolini.  This is relevant to our discussion because Mussolini noted in the entry he wrote for the Encyclopedia Italiana, ‘Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power.’”  Also, “For most of the twentieth century, Americans feared the greatest danger to our way of life was communism.  We were wrong: fascism was a more potent external menace, and now may be our greatest internal threat.”  Under the heading, “The feudal corporate lords take over the world?” Hartmann writes

 

“But what if a new governmental form has emerged and not yet been recognized or identified by the pundits? A state led not by a dictator or theocrat, nor by its citizen voters, but by corporations? A state in which corporations write laws, passed by legislators beholden to corporations, and always incrementally benefiting corporations?

 

“This wouldn't be the ‘strong state’ that Mussolini envisioned with his ‘fascism,’ where the corporations serve the state, but would represent a new type of state of, by, and for the corporations.

 

“The state would merely supply a facade of governance. The real decisions would be made by corporate chiefs on issues ranging from how much mercury is in the air, to what candidates would run for elective office, to how the nation conducts its energy and foreign policies.

Corporate CEOs holding wealth and power that would have made Henry VIII jealous, living in private-jet and penthouse luxury beyond the imagining of most citizens, would decide what news people would see, what music they would hear, and what kind of medical care they could get.

 

“There is not, to the best of my knowledge, a word to describe this sort of nation-state, although corporatist and corporatism seem to work. It's not a purely fascistic state because it doesn't include the ‘belligerent nationalism’ part of the definition (if anything, nationalism is often celebrated in slogan but suppressed in policy), nor is it democratic because it's not run by or for its entire populace. It's not a dictatorship, yet neither is it a republic. It's not a theocracy – although it has its own belief system in the almost-supernatural powers of the ‘free market’ – but it is no longer a constitutionally limited government.

 

“Its parallel can be found in the thirteenth-century era of feudalism, when the lords had enough power to force the king to grant them rights under the Magna Carta. This time, the government isn't hereditary, but its individual members come from (and nearly all aspire to go to) the elite world of corporate wealth and power. The closest I can come to describing it is as a corporate-controlled semifeudal pseudodemocracy.

 

“And the trend to transform democracies (and even dictatorships, like Russia) into corporate-controlled semifeudal pseudodemocracies is already well underway.

 

“The United States has succumbed and has laid plans to take Iraq with it. Canada is on the brink, as is Germany, and Putin's Russia is just beginning to fight back against corporate powers, albeit using the weapons of dictatorship. Perhaps a third of the smaller democracies of the world particularly those rich in natural resources or cheap labor with strongman leaders or elite ruling families or corporations (like Botswana, Colombia, and Singapore) – are already democracies in name only.

 

“The World Trade Organization (WTO) has replaced the United Nations as the most powerful intergovernmental organization in the world, and in the WTO, corporations are equal partners with nations. Soon corporations will be the masters of nations; some suggest they already are.

 

“This is the dark side of corporate globalization promoted in works like Thomas L. Friedman's The Lexus and the Olive Tree (1999). It could displace democracy entirely from Greece and America, the ancestral lands of its birth.

 

“And so we are left with the question: will people who have tasted freedom once again rise up and throw this century's version of tea into the harbor? Or will the people of previously democratic nations find themselves powerless against the new corporate feudal lords?”

 

In Secrets, Lies and Democracy (1994) Noam Chomsky writes, “I mean fascism pretty much in the traditional sense.  So when a rather mainstream person like Robert Skidelsky, the biographer of Keynes, describes the early postwar systems as modeled on fascism, he simply means a system in which the state integrates labor and capital under the control of the corporate structure.

 

“That’s what a fascist system traditionally was.  It can vary in the way it works, but the ideal state that it aims at is absolutist – top-down control with the public essentially following orders.

 

“Fascism is a term from the political domain, so it doesn't apply strictly to corporations, but if you look at them, power goes strictly top-down, from the board of directors to managers to lower managers and ultimately to the people on the shop floor, typists, etc. There's no flow of power or planning from the bottom up. Ultimate power resides in the hands of investors, owners, banks, etc.

 

“People can disrupt, make suggestions, but the same is true of a slave society. People who aren't owners and investors have nothing much to say about it. They can choose to rent their labor to the corporation, or to purchase the commodities or services that it produces, or to find a place in the chain of command, but that's it. That's the totality of their control over the corporation.

 

“That's something of an exaggeration, because corporations are subject to some legal requirements and there is some limited degree of public control. There are taxes and so on. But corporations are more totalitarian than most institutions we call totalitarian in the political arena.”

 

“[Thomas] Jefferson specifically warned against ‘banking institutions and monied incorporations’ (what we would now call ‘corporation’) and said that if they grow, the aristocrats will have won and the American Revolution will have been lost.  Jefferson’s worst fears were realized (although not entirely in the ways he predicted).”

 

“Those ideas, which run straight through to [John] Dewey, are deeply anticapitalist in character.  Adam Smith didn’t call himself an anticapitalist because, back in the eighteenth century, he was basically precapitalist, but he had a good deal of skepticism about capitalist ideology and practice – even about what he called ‘joint stock companies’ (what we call corporations today, which existed in quite a different form in his day). He worried about the separation of managerial control from direct participation, and he also feared that these joint stock companies might turn into ‘immortal persons.’

 

“This indeed happened in the nineteenth century, after Smith's death [under current law, corporations have even more rights than individuals, and can live forever – David Barsamian (interviewer)].  It didn’t happen through parliamentary decisions – nobody voted on it in Congress.  In the US, as elsewhere in the world, it happened through judicial decisions.  Judges and corporate lawyers simply crafted a new society in which corporations have immense power.

 

“Today, the top two hundred corporations in the world control over a quarter of the world's total assets, and their control is increasing. Fortune magazine's annual listing of the top American corporations found increasing profits, increasing concentration, and reduction of jobs – tendencies that have been going on for some years.”

 

[End of Chomsky extracts.]

 

Another article I recently read was Laurence W. Britt’s 2002 article “Fascism Anyone?” posted at http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/britt_23_2.htm .  Britt writes:  “…fascism’s principles are wafting in the air today, surreptitiously masquerading as something else, challenging everything we stand for. The cliché that people and nations learn from history is not only overused, but also overestimated; often we fail to learn from history, or draw the wrong conclusions. Sadly, historical amnesia is the norm.

“We are two-and-a-half generations removed from the horrors of Nazi Germany, although constant reminders jog the consciousness. German and Italian fascism form the historical models that define this twisted political worldview. Although they no longer exist, this worldview and the characteristics of these models have been imitated by protofascist regimes at various times in the twentieth century. Both the original German and Italian models and the later protofascist regimes show remarkably similar characteristics. Although many scholars question any direct connection among these regimes, few can dispute their visual similarities.

“Beyond the visual, even a cursory study of these fascist and protofascist regimes reveals the absolutely striking convergence of their modus operandi. This, of course, is not a revelation to the informed political observer, but it is sometimes useful in the interests of perspective to restate obvious facts and in so doing shed needed light on current circumstances.

“For the purpose of this perspective, I will consider the following regimes: Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Franco's Spain, Salazar's Portugal, Papadopoulos's Greece, Pinochet's Chile, and Suharto's Indonesia. To be sure, they constitute a mixed bag of national identities, cultures, developmental levels, and history. But they all followed the fascist or protofascist model in obtaining, expanding, and maintaining power. Further, all these regimes have been overthrown, so a more or less complete picture of their basic characteristics and abuses is possible.

“Analysis of these seven regimes reveals fourteen common threads that link them in recognizable patterns of national behavior and abuse of power. These basic characteristics are more prevalent and intense in some regimes than in others, but they all share at least some level of similarity.”  [I will just list the fourteen items here – see Britt’s full article for explanations, plus references.]

1.      Powerful and continuing expressions of nationalism

2.      Disdain for the importance of human rights

3.      Identification of enemies / scapegoats as a unifying cause

4.      The supremacy of the military / avid militarism

5.      Rampant sexism

6.      A controlled mass media

7.      Obsession with national security

8.      Religion and ruling élite tied together

9.      Power of corporations protected

10.  Power of labor suppressed or eliminated

11.  Disdain and suppression of intellectuals and the arts

12.  Obsession with crime and punishment

13.  Rampant cronyism and corruption

14.  Fraudulent elections.

Britt closes (in an earlier version of his piece) with a quote from Huey Long: “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the American flag."  [End of Britt’s material.]

In reviewing Britt’s list of attributes of a fascist state, it is interesting to see that the US scores “high” in a number of them.  On item 3 (Identification of enemies / scapegoats as a unifying cause) the shift of focus from communism to the never-ending “war on terror” stands out.  On item 4 (The supremacy of the military / avid militarism), the tremendous investment of energy and resources in the military is without parallel in the world.  Item 5 (Obsession with national security) is prominent on a continuing basis, with daily announcements of the number of US soldiers killed in Iraq and the continuous maintenance of “yellow” (elevated) status for the nation and “orange” (high) status for all domestic and international flights, under the Department of Homeland Security’s Security Advisory System.  With respect to item 8 (Religion and ruling elite tied together), the strenuous efforts of organized religions to support the US government in its program to encourage and support illegal immigration are notable.  Item 9 (Power of corporations protected) stands out as a hallmark of the country’s government, across the legislative, executive and judicial departments.  On item 10 (Power of labor suppressed or eliminated), the government’s waging of a war against the middle class continues unabated, with several decades of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders.  All of the benefits of increased productivity have gone to the wealthy, and the middle class now work twice as hard as in the past (with two family workers now in the competitive labor force, compared to one fifty years ago).  Item 12 (Obsession with crime and punishment) stands out egregiously, now that the US imprisons one percent of its adult population and one in seven black males.  (The US has more prisoners than any other country in the world, and has the highest rate of incarceration in the world.)  The “war on drugs” has gone far to make criminals out of many people (recreational drug users) and to spawn much crime (to purchase drugs at the grossly inflated prices resulting from their criminalization).  Item 13 (Rampant cronyism and corruption) is exemplified by the symbiosis of the US government with the powerful corporate lobby system.  The fact that the Clintons could amass 109 million dollars in the period 2000-2006, after leaving the White House with negative assets, stands in tribute to this system.  Corporate executives and boards of directors conspire and collude to pay themselves obscenely large salaries and fees, grossly exceeding any reasonable measure of intrinsic worth of the services they provide to the stockholders.  The classic example of item 14 (Fraudulent elections) is the “stealing” of the 2000 presidential election from Al Gore by voting-machine “problems” in Florida, and the continued efforts of the government to promote the use of electronic voting machines, which are easily and invisibly manipulated.

 

In his book, The Party’s Over (2003), Richard Heinberg writes: “Giant corporations are engines of growth and have become primary power wielders in modern industrial societies.  One way to rein them in would be to challenge important legal privileges they have acquired through dubious means.  The Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution was adopted soon after the Civil War to grant freed slaves the rights of persons; but by the last decades of the 19th century, judges and corporate lawyers had twisted the Amendment’s interpretation to regard corporations as persons, thus granting them the same rights as flesh-and-blood human beings.  Since then, the Fourteenth Amendment has been invoked to protect corporations’ rights roughly 100 times more frequently than African-Americans’ rights.

 

“The legal fiction of corporate personhood gives corporations the right of free speech, under the First Amendment to the US Constitution.  In recent years, when communities or states have sought to restrict corporations’ campaign donations to politicians, the courts have overruled such restrictions as a violation of corporate free-speech rights as persons.  Corporations also are allowed constitutional protection against illegal search and seizure so that decisions made in corporate boardrooms are protected from public scrutiny.  However, corporate ‘persons’ do not have the same limitations and liabilities as flesh-and-blood persons.  A human person in California who commits three felonies will be jailed for 25 years to life under the state’s ‘three-strikes’ law; but a California-chartered corporate ‘person’ that racks up dozens of felony convictions for breaking environmental or other laws receives only a fine, which it can write off as a cost of doing business.  Personhood almost always serves the interests of the largest and wealthiest corporations while small, local businesses that also have corporate legal status are systematically disadvantaged.”

 

Heinberg continues, “Our current monetary system, which is based on debt and interest and thereby entails endless economic growth and snowballing indebtedness, requires replacement While some monetary theorists advocate a gold-based currency as a solution, others argue that a well-regulated, non-debt-based paper or computer-credit currency would have greater flexibility. There is at least one precedent in this regard: the Isle of Guernsey, a British protectorate, has had an interest-free paper currency since 1816, has no public debt, no unemployment, and a high standard of living."  (I will return to the issues of compound interest and debt-based money later.)

 

The preceding are but a few of the growing number of references to the US as a fascist state.  Additional sources include Kevin Danaher’s Corporations Are Gonna Get Your Mama: Globalization and the Downsizing of the American Dream (1996) and Insurrection: Citizen Challenges to Corporate Power (2003).

 

While passing through the Chicago airport last week, I picked up an interesting book on fascism in America.  It is Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism (2007).  Goldberg makes the point very convincingly that fascism is primarily a phenomenon of the left (the party of change) rather than of the right (the party of the status quo).  (To distinguish Communism from Fascism, the Communist movement, also of the left, falsely asserted that fascism was of the right, and this false representation stuck.)  Goldberg discusses at length the fact that there is no fixed definition of fascism, and he presents his own: “Fascism is a religion of the state.  It assumes the organic unity of the body politic and longs for a national leader attuned to the will of the people.  It is totalitarian in that it views everything as political and holds that any action by the state is justified to achieve the common good.  It takes responsibility for all aspects of life, including our health and well-being, and seeks to impose uniformity of thought and action, whether by force or through regulation and social pressure.  Everything, including the economy and religion, must be aligned with its objectives.  Any rival identity is part of the ‘problem’ and therefore defined as the enemy.  I will argue that contemporary American liberalism embodies all of these aspects of fascism.”

 

Further, Goldberg writes, “Robert F. Kennedy Jr. recycles this theme [that big business is the power behind fascism] when he writes, ‘The rise of fascism across Europe in the 1930s offers many lessons on how corporate power can undermine a democracy.  Mussolini complained that ‘fascism should really be called corporatism.’”

 

Goldberg makes convincing arguments that the US was a fascist state under the administration of President Woodrow Wilson, and that the liberals of today promote fascism.  He does not come right out and declare that the US is a fascist state today.  For all intents and purposes, it is.  The only real argument against this point of view is that the US of today is no longer a sovereign state.  It is one of many states under the control of global Corporatism.  It is simply a department or branch of that global business.  The US government has no power other than what it derives from the wealthy elite, and the US people have no power at all within the corporatist system.  The real power is in the hands of big business.  Ordinarily, the term “fascism” applies to sovereign states, not to corporations or branches of corporation, such as the US is today.  The term corporatism appears to best describe the political state of the world today.

 

So Is America a Fascist State?

 

So what’s going on?  Has America all of a sudden, or even gradually, become a fascist state?  If you consider the definition and discussion given above, it is clear that fascism, like democracy, socialism, communism, and many other forms of government, can vary considerably in its implementation.  Whether a state is fascist or not depends, to a considerable extent, on one’s opinion about the degree or extent to which the state displays or embodies the various characteristics cited in the definition.  It would appear to be quite consistent with the definition to refer to America as a fascist democracy – it is nationalistic and patriotic; it does embrace business (economic development, industrial activity) as the lynchpin of its society; and it supports a very powerful military-industrial complex, which it is not reluctant to use from time to time, especially to secure unfettered access to the oil on which its industrial system so crucially depends.  One could argue that it is not at all in the class of the dictatorships of Mussolini and Hitler, and that this term is too strong.  One could argue that no state extant today is a fascist state in the same league as Hitler’s Germany or Mussolini’s Italy.  One could argue either way that America is a fascist state, or that it is not.  Of course, one might keep in mind the old saying, “If it walks like a duck, and it talks like a duck, it’s probably a duck!”

 

Perhaps the strongest argument against the use of of the word fascism to describe present-day America, and in favor of another word, such as corporatism, is the fact that as globalization transforms the world to a one-world government (“New World Order”), nationalization is fading into the past.  The business interests now control states and use them as tools to further their purposes, and nationalism as a force in world affairs is almost a thing of the past – it is transforming into an ethnic attribute, and fading away as a political force.  It is almost an ill-posed question to ask whether America is fascist, since corporations now control the world and individual nations are largely irrelevant to this new system.  They are little more than ethnic or political groupings, through which corporatist interests operate.  The fact is that the US government now serves the wealthy elite, as do almost all other national governments (Russia is perhaps an exception).  The United States is now simply a corporate enterprise whose sole function is to generate massive wealth for the planet’s rich.  Indeed, a new world government system – corporatism – has evolved, and is now in near-total control of the planet.  The US is simply a part – an operating entity – of this larger whole.  It is almost moot to debate whether America is a fascist state, since under the new global framework of corporatism the power and importance of state sovereignty have diminished to almost zero.  The word “sovereignty” in referring to nation-states is now a misnomer – they are no longer sovereign (independent, autonomous) entities.

 

The Benefit of Productivity Increases Goes to the Wealthy Elite

 

On The History Channel a few weeks ago was an interesting program about candy manufacture.  At one point in the program, it was pointed out that a single machine can now manufacture the same amount of candy (8,000 pounds) in one-half hour as a small candy factory employing traditional methods and several employees could produce in a year.  US productivity has skyrocketed over the past half century.  But virtually none of this productivity increase has benefited the US middle class.  In fact, the quality of life for the middle class has been in decline for quite some time.  The US middle class has to work longer and harder than ever before, with both parents working in most families now, just to make ends meet.  Where has all of the benefit of the productivity increase gone?  To the wealthy elite, the plutocrats who own the country.

 

Here follows an excerpt from Juliet Schor’s A Sustainable Economy for the 21st Century (1995, 1998).

 

“CONSUMERISM, THE ENVIRONMENT AND THE PRODUCTIVITY DIVIDEND. Looking back over the past fifty years, the U.S. experience raises troubling questions. We have more than doubled our productive potential, as a result of rising productivity. Had we channeled this ‘productivity dividend’ into leisure time, Americans would have already reached the twenty hour week. But instead we used all of our economic progress to produce more goods and services, and to consume more. So Americans of all income classes got a higher material standard of living about twice as ‘high’ – but not many got more leisure time. On the contrary, those of us with jobs have lengthened our hours.

 

“We have gotten more things, but there is growing evidence that consumerism is not giving us satisfaction and peace of mind. Americans are neither happier nor more satisfied. Measures of social health show decline, not progress. Millions feel trapped in a cycle of working and spending, running faster and staying in place. Might it not be time to hop off that treadmill? As a society, we have achieved affluence as measured by average income; nonetheless, an increasing number of Americans are impoverished. But if we choose, which we should, to distribute our wealth more equitably, everyone in this country could live well, indeed handsomely, by historical comparison. Even for those who have achieved a middle class standard of living, quality of life is problematic. Now it's time to figure out how the consumerist lifestyle relates to true well-being.

 

“One thing we do know is that consumerism is disastrous for the environment. The last half-century of growth has been the most ecologically destructive in human history, and the United States, with its big malls, fast food, and lots of private (versus public) consumption has developed the most ecologically damaging pattern of consumption in the world. How can we reconcile our needs for material comfort, adequate time, and a healthy planet?”

 

Juliet Schor’s concern that the problem is essentially one of distribution of wealth is a red herring.  It is true that the distribution of wealth has become tremendously skewed in the past half-century (e.g., the ratio of income for corporate executives to workers has increased from about 40 to 1 to about 500 to 1).  While this causes tremendous social stress, the fundamental problem relative to the environment is the generation of material wealth at the expense of nature.  Large human numbers and industrial activity are generating massive wealth – and massive destruction of nature.  That is the fundamental problem.  Relative to the environment, the fundamental problem is not one of distribution of wealth.

 

The US Government Promotes the Dollar Drain and Dollar Weakening

 

A few months ago, the US Treasury Department was promoting the facilitation of means by which illegal aliens could transfer funds from the US back to their home countries.  The US government views the opportunity of remitting a portion of one’s wages is a strong incentive for illegal aliens to come to the US, and it is therefore doing whatever it can to promote and facilitate this practice.  Every year, billions of dollars are sent to Mexico and other countries as remittances from illegal aliens living and working in the US.  Because of this and other similar fiscal policies, such as the massive expenditures for the war in Iraq, the value of the US dollar relative to other currencies has plummeted.  The Canadian dollar is now worth USD1.01 – when I worked in Canada in 1997, it was worth USD0.67.  The euro is now worth USD1.56.  A few years ago it was worth USD0.80.  The massive devaluation of the US dollar is good for businesses that export.  It makes it much harder for US consumers to purchase foreign goods and travel abroad.  Since 40 percent of our food and about 60 percent of our oil is now imported, it hits hardest at those Americans least able to pay, and have little alternative.  It is good news, however, for the wealthy elite who wish to sell their products abroad.  Once again: who benefits – the wealthy elite; who pays – the US middle class.

 

Mexican Truckers Get a Free Ride on US Highways; Who Pays?  You Do!

 

At midnight on September 7, 2007, the US government started allowing Mexican truckers to use US highways.  These highways were bought and paid for by US citizens’ taxes.  But Mexican truckers may now use them for free!  How can a US firm compete against a Mexican firm, when it is taxed to pay for the roads that the Mexican firm can now use for free?  It cannot.  In this program, the average US citizen loses two ways – his taxes go to provide free highways for Mexican trucking firms, and his income must now decrease because he is put in direct competition with Mexican firms and drivers who do not have to pay for these roads.  Who benefits?  The wealthy elite – and Mexico.  Who pays?  The US middle class.  This action is a complete outrage.  It is an affront to the US middle class.

 

Government and political leaders all say that they are for “free and fair” trade.  This is a lie.  The US government passes laws giving tremendous advantages to foreigners, and then stands idly by as the quality of life of the US middle class is destroyed.

 

A book describing this developing situation in detail, as part of a larger effort to integrate North America into a single economic union, is Jerome Corsi’s The Late Great U.S.A.: The Coming Merger with Mexico and Canada (2007).  Corsi points out the plan for accomplishing this is exactly the one that was used to implement the European Union (EU) – an “incremental” approach.  It was recognized that the people would never accept a European government as a single, massive change, and so this process was implemented gradually.  A key figure in this process was Jean Monnet.  The process started out with small steps, such as European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) in 1951 and the European Economic Community (EEC, or “European Common Market”), created by the Treaty of Rome in 1957.  The European Atomic Energy Commission was also set up the same day.  In 1960 the seven-nation European Free Trade Association was set up, and in 1968 the European Customs Union was created.  In 1992, the Treaty of the European Union was signed, forming the European Union.  In 2002, the euro was introduced to replace traditional national currencies.

 

This incremental approach to creating a North American Union (NAU) is well underway.  Robert Pastor is a leading proponent of this movement.  The passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994 was a major step in this direction.  In 2005, the US, Canada and Mexico signed the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP, or “Waco Declaration”) to further integrate the three countries, with major emphasis on trade.  The effort to create a NAFTA superhighway which would allow passage of Mexican trucks into the US without inspection is a major current project.

 

The US Government Is Selling US Infrastructure to Foreign Entities

 

There has been a growing movement to sell US infrastructure, such as highways, to foreign entities.  These infrastructures are sold for a fraction of their replacement cost.  This practice is an affront to the US taxpayers whose hard-earned earnings paid for them.  This means nothing to the US government.  Through its fiscal policies, it has run up such a massive debt to foreign governments that it is now selling US assets in a feckless attempt to reduce the foreign debt.  The only problem is, these assets should not be theirs to sell – they were paid for by the US taxpayer, and their ownership should remain in US hands.  The US taxpayer will now be paying foreign entities for use of assets that he built with his own tax dollars.  The US government does not care about the US taxpayer a whit, however, except as a source of revenue.  Instead of serving the people, it now serves mainly the rich (both within the US and outside it), using the people to generate wealth for them.  It taxed the citizen to build this infrastructure, and now it is selling it to foreigners at a fraction of its value.  How long will the US citizenry endure this abuse and contempt from its government?

 

The US government has a long-standing policy of selling US goods to foreigners at a fraction of their true value.  After the Second World War, it sold our “Liberty Ships” to Aristotle Onassis for a small fraction of their value, and helped make him one of the richest men in the world.  The US government could have restricted this sale of US-taxpayer-built ships to US citizens (a “Sell American” policy), but it chose not to do so.  It sold these goods, made by Americans and paid for by Americans to the highest bidder, regardless of nationality.  It cares more for money than it does for the US middle class.  From its actions, it is clear that the US government – the governing class – and the ruling class (the oligarchy, the plutocracy) that it serves despise the US middle class.  The US wealthy elite and their US government thrall have nothing but contempt and scorn for the US middle class.  Why shouldn’t they?  The middle class is allowing the wealthy elite and the US government to destroy its quality of life, without uttering a peep.  The government is waging a vicious war against the US middle class, turning them into impoverished masses as in other oligarchic / plutocratic societies.  As the US government imports more and more people from third-world countries, US culture and government are resembling those of third-world countries more and more.

 

The US people have stood idly by while the government that the Founders established to serve them (“of, by and for the people”) has morphed into one that serves the wealthy and enslaves the people.  They had a precious thing, but they failed to preserve and protect it, and they lost it.  The errors and sins of the US people that led to this loss are many.  They granted natural-person rights to corporations; they allowed mass immigration, abandoned assimilation of immigrants and allowed fractionation of the country; they allowed massive international free trade; they allowed open borders; they allowed overpopulation; they allowed government to become much stronger than they were; they did not maintain vigilance; they allowed debt-based money; they allowed compound interest.  They did these things partly out of greed for material wealth, and partly out of stupidity (the once-sovereign government and people now serve the wealthy elite – a harsh master).  The Founders warned that democracy could survive only with an educated citizenry.  It also requires an intelligent and homogeneous citizenry.  The United States of the Founders exists no more.  That government is dead.  The United States is dead.  Long live the United States.

 

Many US Jobs Are Being Exported, and Many US-Based Jobs Are Being Given to Foreigners

 

Giving Jobs to Foreigners

 

By now, everyone is well aware that the free-trade programs such as NAFTA and CAFTA and the WTO have caused substantial harm to US wages and employment, particularly in low-skill jobs.  The primary motivation for these programs, of course, is that they benefit the wealthy elite.  In addition to being devoted to that beneficiary class, it would appear that the US government cares more about raising the incomes of Latinos and Asians in foreign countries than it does for maintaining the standard of living of the US middle class.

 

Everyone knows that many jobs – both manufacturing and service – have been exported overseas.  In addition, the US government invites thousands of foreign workers to the US to take jobs that US workers are able and willing to do – but not at “slave” wages.  The H-1B visa program provides jobs to thousands of foreign workers here in the US.  These are all jobs that either (1) US workers would have done, had foreign workers not been available; or (2) would not have needed to be done at all, thereby saving the country from the natural-land destruction and energy consumption that accompanies each additional person added to the population.  Many people say that immigrants take jobs that no American is willing to do, such as restaurant work, construction work, landscaping work, farm work, meatpacking work, and the like.  This is a total lie.  If immigrants were not present, all jobs in the US would be done by Americans – and willingly (in exchange for wages, in a free society) – just as they were doing prior to passage of the Immigration Act of 1965.

 

The H-1B program is a complete scam.  It was touted as a means of hiring highly skilled foreign workers to fill essential jobs for which no US workers could be found.  It has been reported recently, however, that up to 70 percent of the H-1B visa holders are filling low-skill jobs.  It is a massive guest-worker program that does nothing but deny US citizens thousands of jobs, consume commercial energy, and destroy natural land (space and infrastructure for immigrants) and quality of life for US citizens.  The firms using the most H-1B visas are all US branches of Indian firms (e.g., Infosys, Wipro, Tata Consultancy Services and Satyam, each of which uses several thousand).  The fourth-largest-using firm is Microsoft, which uses about 1,000 visas.  Seven of the top ten H-1B-visa-using firms are foreign firms.

 

Many good jobs that American workers would gladly fill are now being given to foreigners.  I recently scanned down the list of physicians and surgeons in the current “Yellow Pages” of the Spartanburg telephone directory.  Here is a list of some of the foreign names that represent very high paying jobs now held by foreigners / recent immigrants:  Ahmad, Ansari, Attab, del Savio, de Ocampo, Desai, Gaikwad, Giep, Gundi, Gupta, Habib, Haddad, Hiremath, Idris, Joshi, Kao, Khan, Kim, Mirza, Morales, Nath, Nguyen, Nguyenduy, Prabu, Rashid, Saeed, Sarmiento, Shah, Srinivasan, Suarez, Tanboulong, Tarazi, Tsai, Yazdy, Yee.  On the road leading to my house, there is a large sign advertising a new physician by the name of Patel.  If the US did not have a policy of mass immigration, and allowed immigrants only if required by national defense, then none of these high-paying medical-doctor jobs would be held by foreigners / recent immigrants.  They would be held by native-culture Americans, or they would not exist (thereby saving much natural land and living space and consumption of commercial energy).  Most of the bloated salaries of these foreign-born doctors are paid for from earnings or taxes from the US middle class.

 

On the Today Show on July 23, 2008, Keith Morrison presented a piece about a former illegal alien who was now a successful US-citizen brain surgeon.  He studied medicine because it required a low level of ability in English.  This man is now sucking millions of dollars a year out of the US economy.  Keith Morrison presented his case in an admiring fashion, as if the man’s accomplishment was something that he and the US could be proud of.  The man was an illegal-alien criminal invader of our country, who is still leeching off our system, and he deserves to be greeted with a machine gun, not with open arms and adulation.

 

The US government is promoting giving big salaries to Indians, Chinese, and Middle-Easterners, paid for by the US middle class, while it forces the US middle class to compete in the global economy with people making a dollar a day.  It promotes this as a means of destroying the culture and power of the traditional US middle class, through fractionation of the country (paralysis of democracy by tyranny of the minority).  It is your government that is destroying your quality of life, and giving your country away to foreigners, all to generate more income and wealth for the wealthy elite.  What is even more amazing is that the government has not only sold out the middle class to the wealthy, but it has ceded its own authority to the wealthy.  The citizens are slaves of the government, and the government is the thrall of the wealthy.

 

The US government may assert that it is beneficently transforming the US economy from a manufacturing economy to a service economy.  But Communist China and India can do much of the service work as well (e.g., off-shore call centers; the development of the Flexcube integrated banking system by the Indian firm Infosys, a Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute (SEI) Capability Maturity Model (CMM) Level 5 software development firm) – and import their citizens to the US to do much of the rest (such as the physicians listed above).  The US middle class will soon be taking in each other’s wash, since we now manufacture so little of what we use.

 

What is really bad is that many of these people earn salaries of hundreds of thousands – even millions – of dollars per year, and most of that is paid by the US middle class, either through massive medical insurance premiums or via taxes (Medicare, Medicaid, etc.).  Because of the US policy of subsidizing medical care, the medical sector now represents over one-seventh of the US economy.  Medical costs in the US are the highest in the world.  They have been pushed to extremely high levels by government policies aimed at enriching the medical establishment.  Almost half of the US population cannot afford medical insurance (or do not have it provided by their employer), and therefore do not have access to basic medical care.  But illegal aliens certainly do, at any emergency room of a public hospital – paid for by the US middle class through higher medical prices and taxes.

 

Funneling of Wealth to the Medical Establishment

 

The US middle class is being totally ripped off.  As a direct result of government policies aimed at benefiting rich doctors, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies and medical-equipment manufacturers, it is being forced to pay bloated prices for medical care – and for free medical care for illegal aliens and their birthright-citizen children.  The people filling these jobs come from failed countries and cultures that deny their citizens the privilege of high-paying jobs.  With US government help, they are importing their cultures here.  They will be the wealthy, and the US middle class will be the impoverished masses that they care nothing for – the same system that they had in their home countries, but now with them at the top.

 

All three candidates in the current US presidential campaign (Clinton, Obama and McCain) talk about the health-care disaster in the US, but none of them will propose any “fix” that will reduce the flow of money from the middle class to the medical establishment.  In fact, their proposals would increase the flow of money from the middle class to the medical establishment.  Through their calls for “universal health care” they would force everyone to purchase medical insurance, or they would pay for this insurance for those who could not afford it (including illegal aliens) by using tax money, which is taken mainly from the middle class.  The net result is that the proportion GDP that will go to medical services will increase, and even more money will be transferred from the middle class to the wealthy establishment (either through premiums that are paid directly by the middle class or by their taxes).

 

The candidates’ call for “universal health care” under the guise of universal health insurance is a complete con job for the benefit of the medical establishment.  Hillary Clinton has claimed, for example, that she wants to make health care “affordable.”  That is a complete lie.  She does not want to make health care affordable at all.  She wants instead to keep the costs at their absurdly high levels, so that almost no one can afford them, so that the only possible way for most people to pay for them is through medical insurance.  Furthermore, she wants to keep the costs so high that people cannot even afford the insurance!  Now that American businesses are balking at paying for this insurance to cover bloated medical costs (it costs about a thousand dollars a month just for basic coverage for a family with no medical problems), her “plan” is to force everyone to have insurance, and to use tax dollars (most of which are from the middle class) to pay the premiums for anyone who cannot afford them.  In other words, keep the system exactly the way it is (the highest-cost medical system in the world), and burden the US middle class to pay for it.

 

The US government has promoted policies to transfer money to the medical establishment for a long time.  When I was a boy (in the 1940s), US physicians did not make any more money than other comparably educated people – on the order of five to ten thousand dollars per year.  In the 1950s, the US government conspired with the American Medical Association to restrict admission to US medical schools.  This would have the effect of reducing supply and driving physicians’ salaries up.  This plan worked stunningly.  By the 1960s physicians were making tens of thousands of dollars per year.  Soon, it was hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.  Now, many physicians make millions of dollars per year.  Other similarly educated technical people, such as scientists and engineers, have not had the benefit of this monopoly / constraint of trade system, and their salaries are a small fraction of this amount.  Before long, the supply of physicians was so “tight” that Filipino doctors were being brought to the US, where they received these high salaries.  These are well-paying jobs that could have been and gladly would have been filled by native-born US citizens, but the US government, through its policies against the US middle class, “funneled” to foreigners.

 

When I was young, a typical physician’s or dentist’s office was in an old home.  Now, physicians and dentists operate from luxurious office buildings, which they often own – courtesy of their patients.  What a change!

 

There are many government policies directed at transfer of wealth from the middle class to the medical establishment.  One example is patent protection.  The government grants patent protection for many years for exotic drugs, for which pharmaceutical companies, shielded from competition, may charge extremely high prices.  The pharmaceutical industry and its government thrall argue that this patent protection is necessary to pay for the costly research to develop new drugs.  The industry goes to extreme lengths to addict the public to these drugs through intensive television ad campaigns (which were against the law just a few years ago).  The fact is that many of these drugs are of limited effectiveness compared to far less costly alternatives and have serious side effects, but physicians are given incentives to prescribe them.  The patent protection, which (as a government-granted franchise) should be used to promote the public welfare, is used almost exclusively to the benefit of the wealthy elite.  Much of the massive revenue from these patent-protected products goes to increasing demand – the creation of “legal” drug addicts via high-powered television ads.  The government approves this legal drug addiction, because it generates much income for the medical establishment.  Most of these expensive drugs are not needed at all, and are not justified – their cost far outweighs the benefits that they provide.  At best, they do little to improve the average quality of life of Americans, and at worst they substantially decrease the average quality of life (from side effects; decrease in quality of life from income loss resulting from extremely expensive medical treatment; and prolonging of ill-health life).  The government makes no attempt to regulate the industry so that it produces drugs that improve the average quality of life.  Instead, the pharmaceutical industry is given free reign to milk the public for all that it can, through its government-approved legal-drug addiction program.  The government approves the prolonging of life by artificial means even when the patient is in a terminal vegetative state, simply to generate much income for the medical establishment.  Much – most – of this unnecessary and inhumane care is paid for by taxes from the middle class.

 

The US government promotes use of the medical franchise to enrich the medical establishment at the expense of the general public.  My wife is diabetic, and takes insulin shots twice a day.  In Zambia, where we previously lived, a vial of insulin, which lasts about a month, costs about two dollars.  Insulin is an “old” drug, and costs very little to manufacture.  Here in the US, we are charged about thirty dollars a vial for insulin.  The government supports this rip-off by the pharmaceutical monopoly, and prohibits the importation of low-cost insulin.  Our government is very effective in preventing the importation of inexpensive drugs in order to funnel billions of dollars into the pockets of the medical establishment.  It is a shame that it doesn’t care as much about stopping imports of cheap shoes, textiles, pottery, electronic appliances and cars, to save jobs for our people.  In most of Africa, mefloquine (antimalarial) tablets cost about a dollar apiece (in some places, up to three dollars apiece).  Here in the US, the cost is $15 per tablet.  In Africa (where I lived before moving back to Spartanburg), cough medicine containing codeine costs about $5 per bottle, but I recently was required to pay $35 for a bottle of cough medicine with codeine.  Instead of codeine, the US product contains dangerous chemicals that cause severe prostate problems – generating much additional business for the medical establishment!  The US consumer has no choice – the prices are set by the government-licensed medical franchise.  The US government approves, promotes, enables and enforces this total “rip off” by the US medical establishment.  This practice is simply a means of transferring wealth from the middle class to the wealthy elite medical establishment.

 

I recently suffered a “transient ischemic attack,” or “ministroke.”  The doctor prescribed daily doses of Plavix (clopidogrel), costing about five dollars a pill.  I immediately suffered bad side-effects from the Plavix, which included a swollen tongue.  I did a quick search of the Internet to find out about Plavix.  I could not find any information that it was more effective than aspirin, which costs a few pennies a pill.  I asked my doctor about this, and he told me that aspirin was about 90 percent as effective as Plavix.  Why would a physician, without discussion, prescribe a medication that is only marginally better than aspirin, but costing hundreds of times more and having serious side-effects?  Go figure.

 

This section has dealt with employment for wages or salary.  In addition to giving good jobs to foreigners, the US government has set up massive programs (e.g., the Small Business Administration 8(a) program) to assist foreigners in setting up and operating businesses in the US.  These businesses transfer billions of dollars of income and wealth to foreigners.  All of this wealth did not have to go to foreigners.  It could have gone to native US citizens, or not have been produced at all, at a great saving of energy and damage to the environment.  Amazingly, billions of dollars in trade is given both to Asian firms in Asia and Asian counterpart firms in the US, with no benefit and much cost to the US middle class.

 

Early in my career as a professional statistician, I was surprised to discover that the US government had a program for providing statistician services free of charge to third-world countries who requested them (a US government statistician was posted to the foreign country under an arrangement called a “PASA”).  This policy discriminates heavily against private-sector statisticians, eliminating employment opportunities and depressing their wages – and paid for by income taxes from the US middle class.  My tax dollars, being used to reduce my employment and income opportunities.  My, my, my.  Such policies do not endear one to his government.

 

When I was a small boy, I had a recurrent dream about an older man who went each day to the park to feed peanuts to pigeons.  Each day, there were more and more pigeons.  One day, there were a massive number of pigeons, and the man ran out of peanuts.  The pigeons turned on the man, swarming over him, pecking at his flesh and eyes, killing him.  I asked my father what this dream meant. He told me that the old man represented the United States and its extreme assistance programs (domestic and international).  In its zeal to help others, the US has neglected its own people and its own survival.

 

Discrimination against the Capable

 

Since I do a fair amount of international travel, I make sure that I have recommended immunizations for international travel.  About the only place that you can get vaccinations any more is from local public health clinics.  When I lived in Clearwater, Florida, I would visit the public health clinic for Pinellas County.  Now that I live in Spartanburg, South Carolina, I visit the Spartanburg County Health Department.

 

Except for people getting immunizations for foreign travel, most of the people visiting public health clinics are poor.  They are black, Hispanic, or a variety of foreign-immigrant stock.  In my recent visit to the Spartanburg County Health Department clinic, there were a number of Vietnamese and Hmong.  (Many Hmong have been settled by the US government in the Camp Croft area of Spartanburg.  There is now a Buddhist temple in that area, and all of the local dogs have disappeared.)  These people pay nothing for their medical care, or for their immunizations.  I am required to pay substantial sums, often in the hundred-dollar range.

 

Since I can afford the fees, and since I believe that capable people should pay for services rendered to them, I have no problem with that.  The thing that is really galling about these visits, however, is that I am forced to stand in line behind the people who are paying nothing, and are getting free service at my expense – paid for by my tax dollars!

 

Discrimination is one thing.  I don’t mind very much being discriminated against on the basis of wealth or income, but, as the payer I resent very strongly having my nose rubbed in it.  I pay twice for these services – once through my taxes to provide them to the poor, and again to pay for them whenever I use them.  If I am paying a use fee and others are not, then I expect to be served first.  In fact, since most of the clients at public health clinics are receiving the services at low cost or free at the expense of the taxpayers, and only a few taxpayers (such as I) are paying again for these services at the clinic, it makes sense (would increase the clinic’s expense little and eliminate taxpayer dissatisfaction over the issue of double payment) that I should receive the services at no higher cost.  Radical egalitarianism is alive and well in county health departments, except when it comes to fees, when the rule is “stick it to the taxpayer.”  One more example of where illegal aliens are being given a free ride, paid for by the US middle class.  In this case, you are not only forced to pay for their free care, but to wait in line behind them while they are served first – and then pay for the services a second time!  Doesn’t this just make your blood boil?  The bleeding-heart liberals of the government may claim that it does not want to make the poor people feel inferior.  But in this situation, they are inferior.  The government cares more about the feelings of illegal aliens and the poor than it does the people who are paying the taxes and fees for the services.  This sort of nonsense cannot continue for long.

 

A recent issue of Time magazine (August 27, 2007, “Failing Our Geniuses”) described the situation where our schools discriminate strongly against capable students.  Here follows an excerpt from this article.

 

“In a no-child-left-behind conception of public education, lifting everyone up to a minimum level is more important than allowing students to excel to their limit.  It has become more important for schools to identify deficiencies than to cultivate gifts.  Odd though it seems for a law written and enacted during a Republican Administration, the social impulse behind No Child Left Behind is radically egalitarian. …since at least the mid-1980s, schools have often forced gifted students to stay in age-assigned grades – even though a 160-IQ kid trying to learn at the pace of average 100-IQ kids is akin to an average girl trying to learn at the pace of a retarded girl with an IQ of 40.  Advocates for gifted kids consider one of the most pernicious results to be ‘cooperative learning’ arrangements in which high-ability students are paired with struggling kids on projects.  Education professor Miraca Gross of the University of New South Wales in Sydney has called the current system a ‘lockstep curriculum … in what is euphemistically termed the ‘inclusion’ classroom.’  The gifted students, she notes, don’t feel included.”

 

The US Government Sues the Salvation Army over Its Use of English

 

As crazy as this may seem, the US government has sued the Salvation Army over its policy of requiring that its employees speak English on the job.  The US government is determined to cram foreign culture down the throats of its citizens, as part of its programs of culture fractionation and destruction.  Every place that mass immigration of Mexicans has occurred, English-speaking citizens can no longer get jobs dealing with the public, such as teachers, bank tellers, and the like.  Like a cancer, the US government wages war on its own citizens.

 

As Lou Dobbs has pointed out, the US government has declared war on the middle class.  It is simply a matter of time until they react to this assault.  The US government has committed treacherous violence against the US middle class for several decades, and the day of reckoning for this treachery is fast approaching.  The 9/11 attacks were the direct result of our loss of security from the government’s policies of open borders and mass immigration.  The deaths of thousands of US citizens killed every year by immigrants are directly sponsored by the US government, and continue, year in and year out.  Through its policies, the US government is directly responsible for the killing and maiming of thousands of US citizens every year.  The US government is a treacherous instrument of the wealthy elite that has turned against the middle class.

 

In May, 2008, it was reported that St. Anne’s Catholic School in Wichita, Kansas, was being sued over its policy of requiring students to speak English at all times while at school.  In August, the court found in favor of the school, stating that it was fully within its rights to require that English be spoken.  US District Judge J. Thomas Marten stated further that “It is regrettable that members of the legal profession who see the law merely as a tool for conflict or to use to advance their personal political agendas, are using linguistic diversity as a weapon….  This case should never have been in court.”

 

The “Dream Act” Is an Affront to the US Middle Class

 

Recently, President Bush and Congress tried to cram an illegal-alien amnesty bill down the US public’s throat.  This bill would have offered more than just amnesty (euphemistically called a “fine” by the government) to millions of illegal aliens (for their crime of illegal invasion) – it would reward them with a “path to citizenship.”  It would have granted many benefits to illegal aliens, such as in-state tuition.  It would have granted each illegal the right to legal representation while his “case” was being considered.  It was a massive boondoggle to reward illegal aliens for their criminal act of invading the United States, and to generate billions of dollars in business for immigration lawyers – all paid for by taxes from the US middle class.  It would have made citizens out of millions of criminal invaders.  It would have added a massive financial burden to the US middle class.  It was called the “Dream Act.”  The “dream,” of course was for the wealthy elite and their thrall governing class – and immigration lawyers.  Fortunately, the public outrage over the bill was so strong that it was defeated.

 

That doesn’t matter.  Congress is now working on other ways to accomplish exactly the same thing, as a continuation of its policy of growth-based economics.  The wealthy elite and the US government want about three million immigrants per year, and it is going to have them, no matter what.  It already processes about a million legal immigrants a year.  One might say that it really messed up – it should have been processing three million per year (to achieve its objective of an economy growing by an additional one percent per year).  If it had, then the entire illegal-alien problem would never have occurred.

 

All three of the US presidential contenders – Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John McCain – are in favor of allowing illegal aliens to remain in the US, granting them amnesty for their crime of illegal invasion (euphemistically represented as “paying a fine”) and providing them with a “path to citizenship.”  (The “fine” that would be imposed would be as small as a few thousand dollars – announcing to the world that US citizenship is now for sale for a few thousand dollars.)

 

The US government is bent on a population policy of mass immigration, because that is good for the “growth-based” economics on which the country is based.  The illegal-alien problem is a minor thorn in its side.  It will soon find a way to increase legal immigration to massive levels, so that the illegal-alien problem disappears.

 

There Is Resentment that the US Government, through Its Policies of Mass Immigration, Massive International Free Trade, Open Borders, and Serving of the Wealthy Has Caused a Profound Decline in the Quality of Life for the US Middle Class

 

Through its policies of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders, the US government has caused a profound decline in the quality of life of the US middle class.  The fact that the government now serves mainly the wealthy elite (e.g., by policies aimed at inflating the cost of medical care) has caused a further decline.  The general issue of the decline in quality of life will be addressed in a later section.  There are really two issues here.  The first is the effect of the decline in quality of life, irrespective of the cause.  If quality of life declines, the citizens of a country are not happy and tend to blame the government, even if the government is not directly at fault.  In the case of the United States, however, the decline in the quality of life that the middle class has experienced over the past several decades is directly a result of the US government policies of mass immigration, massive international free trade, open borders, and policies designed to transfer wealth from the middle class to the wealthy.  Very little of the decline that has occurred so far is from external forces beyond the control of the US government.  Eventually, external forces such as the decline in global oil production, species loss and global warming will cause a decline in the quality of life for everyone, but the effect of this on the US middle class citizen to date has been small.  There is dissatisfaction that the quality of life has declined.  There is anger and rage, however, that this decline has been caused almost solely by the US government.

 

Virtually every area in which the quality of life of the US middle class has declined is a direct result of US government policies designed to benefit the wealthy elite.  The resentment over this is growing.  With the passing of Peak Oil, there will be a dramatic and rapid decline in the quality of life for the US middle class.  The degree and extent of this decline will be profoundly exacerbated by the US government policies designed to benefit the wealthy, such as mass immigration.  The passing of Peak Oil is not caused by the US government, but its effects will be profound, and measurably worsened by the US government’s aforementioned policies.  When the effects of Peak Oil become manifest in the US – and this is just a matter of time – the US middle class will vent its anger against the government for exacerbating the problem.  This reaction will mean the end of the US government, and for the wealthy elite who control it.

 

There Is No Way Out for the Middle Class

 

Prior to the mid-term elections in 2006, there was much talk that the Republicans were not doing right, and that they would pay for this in the mid-term elections.  I commented to a number of people that these elections would make no difference at all, that the Democrats were made of the same cloth as the Republicans, and nothing would change.

 

Well, the Democrats were elected in large numbers.  And what has happened?  Nothing.  Things did not change at all!  Things are exactly the same as before!  The approval ratings of Congress and the President are still very low – in the 20 percent range.

 

This past June (2008), local elections were held in Spartanburg.  All of the incumbents were defeated.  It is not that they were unusually inept in doing their jobs – the problem is that the electorate is dissatisfied with the system, and cannot do anything through voting except replace everyone.  I recently heard a prominent person on television state that, since there is no real choice in the US presidential election, he will not vote for president (he will still vote, just not for president).  The system no longer serves the people, and the candidates no longer serve the people.  It does not matter who is running – for major elections (which are of concern to the wealthy elite) the only candidates who have any chance of winning represent “the system” – the wealthy elite.  Changing the incumbents – the faces – does not change the system.  US citizens are seeing more and more that simply replacing the incumbents with others from the same system accomplishes nothing.  They are becoming very frustrated.  This cannot continue for long.

 

Under the US system of government, the US voter has no choice whatsoever.  It costs a lot of money to run for national elective office, and almost all of this money comes from the wealthy elite.  The system is tightly controlled by the wealthy elite.  Under our current system, nothing is going to change.  The governing class will continue to kow-tow to the rich, and the war against the middle class will continue.  Short of revolution, there is no way out.  The country will eventually collapse from its rotten corruption, or from revolution.  The system that got us into this mess and perpetuates it will not get us out of it.  (With the passage of Peak Oil, the current system will end anyway, so the demise of the US system is assured either way.  As I have mentioned elsewhere, the system of large human numbers and global industrialization will soon collapse in any event—all that matters in the long term is what the state of the biosphere is when the current system collapses, and whether a long-term-sustainable system (for mankind and the biosphere) will replace it.)

 

There is an increasing awareness that the current system cannot be changed by itself.  Concomitantly, there is a growing movement afoot to promote the secession of states from the Union, such as the League of the South, Christian Exodus and the Second Vermont Republic.  (See Wikipedia entry for secession for more on this at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secession .)  These movements are feckless.  Recall the US government’s response to South Carolina’s secession in 1861 – a bloody four-year War Between the States (“civil war”) and a million deaths.

 

As mentioned, John Brigham identified three major threats to constitutional democracy in the US: the Elites, the People, and the Experts.  The country is now totally under the control of the wealthy elites and the experts (technology, industry).  Two nails have been driven into the coffin.  The third nail, representing the threat from the people, is about to complete the seal.

 

Quality of Life Is Declining for the US Middle Class

 

Over the past half-century, the quality of life has dropped substantially for the US middle class.  As discussed earlier, this decline has been the direct result of US government policies of mass international free trade, mass immigration, open borders, and programs to benefit the wealthy at the expense of the middle class.  When the passage of Peak Oil occurs, there will be a very substantial further decline in the quality of life for the US middle class, and this decline will be exacerbated by the just-mentioned government policies. 

 

The topic of the decline in the quality of life for the US middle class has been the subject of many books, including those listed below.  Because many of them are “best sellers” and locally available at bookstores or public libraries, I will not discuss most of them in any detail here.  If you are over sixty years of age, or have a relative over sixty, you know how much the quality of life in the US has declined for the US middle class since 1950.  The fundamental reasons for the decline in the quality of life for the US middle class are: (1) the placing of the US worker in direct competition with low-wage foreign workers by massive international free trade, requiring the wife to go to work (so that each home had two full-time workers outside the home instead of one); (2) the further impoverishment of the middle class workers by means of government programs, policies and institutions that transfer wealth from the middle class to the wealthy; (3) the destruction of natural land and the environment because of mass immigration (causing the conversion of millions of acres of natural land to infrastructure) and a variety of ills from overcrowding (long commutes, crowding, massive increase in prices for land and homes, social instability); and (4) dramatic decline in security from open borders (as well as massive international free trade and mass immigration).

 

Recent Books:

 

  • The Long Emergency, by James Howard Kunstler (2005, 2006)
  • The Web of Debt, by Ellen Hodgson Brown (2007, 2008)
  • Free Lunch, by David Cay Johnston (2007)
  • Dangerous Business, by Pat Choate (2008)
  • Chain of Blame, by Paul Muolo and Mathew Padilla (2008)
  • The Uprising, by David Sirota (2008)
  • The Late Great USA, by Jerome R. Corsi (2007)
  • War on the Middle Class, by Lou Dobbs (2006)
  • Exporting America, by Lou Dobbs (2004)
  • Independents Day, by Lou Dobbs (2007)
  • The Real America, by Glenn Beck (2003)
  • An Inconvenient Book, by Glenn Beck (2007)
  • It’s Getting Ugly Out There, by Jack Cafferty (2007)
  • I Am America (And So Can You!), by Stephen Colbert (2007)
  • Dude, Where’s My Country, by Michael Moore (2003)
  • The Official Fahrenheit 9/11 Reader, by Michael Moore (2004)

 

Older Books:

 

  • The City in Mind, by James Howard Kunstler (2001)
  • The Geography of Nowhere, by James Howard Kunstler (1993)
  • Home from Nowhere, by James Howard Kunstler (1996)
  • Corporations Are Gonna Get Your Mama: Globalization and the Downsizing of the American Dream, by Kevin Danaher (1996)
  • The Dangers of “Free Trade,” by John Culbertson (1985)
  • America: What Went Wrong? by Donald Bartlett and James Steele (1992)
  • The Great Betrayal, by Louis March and Brent Nelson (1995)
  • To Harass Our People: The IRS and Government Abuse of Power (1985)
  • What Uncle Sam Really Wants, by Noam Chomsky (1992)
  • The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many, by Noam Chomsky (1993)
  • Secrets, Lies and Democracy, by Noam Chomsky (1994)
  • The Government Racket: Washington from A to Z, by Martin Gross (1992)
  • A Call for Revolution, by Martin Gross (1993)
  • The Tax Racket: Government Extortion from A to Z (1995)
  • The Autobiography of Malcolm X, as told to Alex Haley (1964)
  • By Any Means Necessary, by Malcolm X (1970)
  • The End of White World Supremacy: Four Speeches by Malcolm X (1971)
  • Malcolm X Speeches at Harvard (1991)
  • By Any Means Necessary, by Spike Lee (1992)
  • Malcolm X As They Knew Him, by David Gallen (1992)
  • Quotations from Malcolm X’s speeches from the recording (tape cassette and compact disk) Malcolm X: An NPRâ Presentation (P) 1992 by Dove Audio.

 

The Effects of Mass Immigration

 

On average, every immigrant to the US destroys one acre of natural land, through its conversion to roads, parking lots, houses, schools, hospitals, office buildings and other infrastructure.  By 1973, the US birth rate had stabilized to “replacement” level – an average of two children born to each woman in her lifetime.  That year, the US population was about 212 million people.  The US had achieved the so-called “demographic transition” from high population growth to stable population.  With the passage of the Immigration Act of 1965, however, this very significant achievement was thrown away.  Since then, we have added close to one hundred million people to the US population, a majority of them immigrants and their progeny.  (Furthermore, recent immigrants have high birth rates.  The US fertility rate is now quite high for large subpopulations (e.g., Latinos) and the overall fertility rate is now increasing to levels significantly above replacement level – 2.06 in 2000 and 2.09 in 2007.)  As a direct result of the passage of the Immigration Act of 1965, America has deliberately destroyed about one hundred million acres of natural land.

 

Mass immigration, along with massive international free trade, has gone a long way to destroying the quality of life for the US middle class.  This has been accomplished in several ways.  First, by placing the US worker in direct competition with foreign workers making just a few dollars a day, the once-high income levels of the US middle class have been eroded.  Second, fifty years ago the average American family could be supported by a single person working in the competitive labor force.  Today, both parents must work.  Because the population has increased by fifty percent, cities have expanded and urban sprawl has increased to the point where the commute times to work are very long and the price of housing near cities has skyrocketed.  Economists love this – because of the immigration-fueled population explosion, demand for everything has skyrocketed, sending prices through the roof and generating much wealth for those who control the economy.  Because of the US population explosion, most US citizens can no longer enjoy owning a farm or a cottage on a lake, in the mountains, or at the seashore, because the massive population increase has pushed demand through the roof and put those amenities out of reach.  In fact, much of the US middle class cannot now afford to take easy or affordable advantage of the country’s natural wonders, such as camping in a national park or white-water rafting down a wild river. The damage to the environment that is caused by mass immigration is not limited to the US territory.  On average, each immigrant to the US from a poor country consumes up to ten times as much commercial energy as he did in his home country.  This energy consumption is associated with corresponding increases in the burning of fossil fuels, with the resultant atmospheric pollution and, it seems, global warming.

 

Since passage of the Immigration Act of 1965, the US has been flooded with people from other cultures, many of them quite inimical to the culture that founded this country and made it great.  The massive waves of immigrants since 1965 have not been assimilated into the prevailing (traditional, WASP) US culture, and the government has passed laws giving special treatment to immigrants, including provision of free social, economic and health benefits – including birthright citizenship for illegal aliens’ babies, who then become “anchor babies” through which their criminal parents may acquire US citizenship for themselves and other relatives!   Because of the massive population explosion that has been promoted by the US government, the original population now endures the loss of quality of life associated with overcrowding.  As noted, many of the immigrants are from cultures that are inimical to US traditional culture, cultures of corruption and disdain for the common citizen.  The US government is transporting these cultures wholesale into the US, and transforming the US into a third-world country in terms of economics, environment, and culture.

 

The United States did not need to add 100 million more people to its population – the birth rate had stabilized when it reached 200 million in 1973.  In 1973, the US had its first major energy crisis, following the “Arab oil embargo.”  It did not have oil resources for any more people – US oil production peaked in 1970.  The country’s leaders added 100 million more people to the US population solely out of greed – the country generated more wealth for the wealthy elite with 300 million people than with 200 million people.  The fact that the environment is destroyed, the living space becomes cramped, and the quality of life becomes diminished for the middle class, is of no concern for the country’s leaders or the wealthy elite who control them.

 

Destruction of the Middle Class; Transfer of Wealth from the Middle Class to the Wealthy Elite

 

The simple fact that the quality of life is declining, even to low levels, is not necessarily a cause for resentment against the government.  The quality of life has been low for most of humanity for most of history.  What is different now is that the US middle class once had a very high quality of life, and the US government, through its policies of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders, has destroyed it.  The current decline in the quality of life for the US middle class is a direct result of action by the US government, in its program to serve and enrich the wealthy elite.  That the government that was established to serve the people has now turned on it, serves the wealthy, and has destroyed the quality of life for the middle class renders the situation intolerable.  Just as Americans rebelled when England’s King George III ignored their grievances, the US middle class will soon rebel against its government, which has not only abandoned them, but committed treason against them and turned against them.

 

The Founders of America established a system that led to something that the world had never seen before – a large country with a large, well-off middle class.  This was really something special.  They founded a government that served the people.  Today’s citizens and leaders have thrown that away – or, more correctly, collaborated in its destruction.

 

In his books, The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many (1993) and Secrets, Lies and Democracy (1994), Noam Chomsky discusses (via interview by David Barsamian) the transfer of wealth from the middle class to the wealthy, the declining wages of US workers, and the transformation of the US into a third-world country.  Here follow some excerpts from those works.

 

From Secrets, Lies and Democracy

 

Chomsky makes the point that much wealth is transferred from individuals to corporations by means of the tax system.  This is done by a number of means, including funding of basic research, subsidies to corporations and tax breaks given to corporations as inducements to locate in particular communities.  Since most of the federal tax revenue is collected from individuals rather than corporations, these actions are in the main transfers of income from individuals to corporations.  (In 2007, 80 percent of federal tax revenues were collected from individuals, and only 20 percent from corporations and other sources (such as excise taxes) (source: The Tax Policy Briefing Book: A Citizen’s Guide for the 2008 Election, and Beyond (2008), Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute and Brookings Institution).)

 

“We have a dual system – protection for the rich and market discipline for everyone else.  [Barsamian: I was struck by an article in the New York Times whose headline was, “Nation considers means to dispose of its plutonium.”  So the nation has to figure out how to dispose of what was essentially created by private capital.]  That’s the familiar idea that profits are privatized but costs are socialized.  The costs are the nation’s the people’s but the profits weren’t for the people, nor did they make the decision to produce plutonium in the first place, nor are they making the decisions about how to dispose of it, nor do they get to decide what ought to be a reasonable energy policy.

 

“…the idea that corporations don’t ask government for help is a joke.  They demand an extraordinary amount of government intervention.  That’s largely what the whole Pentagon system is about….  …war scares that were manipulated in 1947 and 1948 to try to ram spending bills through Congress to save the aeronautical industry….  Huge industries were spawned, and are maintained, by massive government intervention.  Many corporations couldn’t survive without it.  The public provides the basic technology – metallurgy, avionics or whatever – via the public subsidy system….  The same is true just across the board.  You can hardly find a functioning sector of the US manufacturing or service economy which hasn’t gotten that way and isn’t sustained by government intervention.”

 

Chomsky has much to say on the fact that US government policies are suppressing wages for US workers, and transforming the US into a third-world country.  The principal means by which this is accomplished is globalization, which is promoted by using debt as the basis for money (on which I will say more later).

 

Additional excerpts from Chomsky’s books are presented in the Appendices.

 

In addition to considering the general transformation of the US to a third-world country, Chomsky also specifically discusses the effect of free trade on depressing wages of US workers.

 

While many of Chomsky’s observations and comments are on the mark, his implication that democracy would address some of the fundamental problems is misplaced.  Democracy is now a tool of the wealthy in achieving their goals.  Although the US Founders set up a government for the people, the US government has now been “hijacked” by the wealthy elite.  John Brigham identified three major threats to constitutional democracy: the Elites, the People, and the Experts (Brigham was referring here to legal experts).  The Elites, working in conjunction with the Experts, have stolen control of the government from the US people.  The government now works for them, not for the people.

 

Socializing the Costs and Privatizing the Benefits; The Right of Eminent Domain; Tax Breaks and Tax Forgiveness; The S&L Scandal

 

Chomsky makes the point that in many instances government programs and policies socialize the costs and privatize the profits.  This feature of American government is discussed at length in David Cay Johnston’s book, Free Lunch (2007).  Some of the examples of this phenomenon, described at length in Johnston’s book, are the following:

 

1. Under the arrangement by which US rail carriers use the nation’s railways, they are absolved from any liability for damage or death to passengers, even if due to their negligence: taxpayers pay all passenger-related claims.

 

2. With US government support, American scientists and engineers developed very powerful magnets (using the rare earth neodymium), which are now used extensively in military and civilian applications (such as speakers, missile guidance systems, and motors).  The US government allowed the transfer of this technology to China.  China was permitted to purchase all US firms that constructed such magnets, constructed magnet production facilities in China, and then closed down the US firms.  The US now has no production capability in this important area, which it developed.  (The same thing happened with video cameras – they were invented in the US, and the technology was given to Asia.)

 

3. US municipalities routinely seize private property through the right of eminent domain, and allow private firms and individuals to make fabulous profits from the condemned land.  Most of these profits are from the value of the land.  This value, derived from destroying (“developing”) land, should logically have accrued to the public, not to a small number of wealthy developers.  Examples of this include the following.

 

a.       Under Mayor Rudi Giuliani, Mullaly Park and part of Macombs Dam Park were confiscated and demolished.  A sports stadium, Yankee Stadium, was constructed on this site, at a cost exceeding 600 million dollars, paid for by the public.  Most of the value from this action accrued to George Steinbrunner, owner of the New York Yankees baseball team.  This action represents a massive subsidy to Steinbrunner, the cost of which was born by the public (loss of the parks, and transfer of the value from their commercialization to Steinbrunner). The government has granted a monopoly to private individuals to operate major sports teams (baseball, football, basketball, hockey).  Johnston points out, “In effect, the billionaire owners of the 30 Major League Baseball teams receive a transfer of wealth from the taxpayers just by moving a failing team to a city willing to lavish more than a half billion taxpayer dollars on a a new stadium.”  Johnston observes, “Normally these restraints on trade would be a crime under the antitrust laws.  But the Supreme Court in 1922 and again in 1953 exempted Major League Baseball from the laws of competition…. This exemption from the laws of competition is crucial to their power to extract subsidies.  Without the power to control who can own a team and where it plays, the ability of team owners to extract subsidies would weaken and perhaps even evaporate….In a free market anyone with the necessary capital could start a team and compete.  This is just how soccer works in Britain.  It also explains why Britain has so many more teams, 13 in greater London alone at last count.  Their admission prices are much lower than American commercial sports teams.”  The value of the public land gifts in the Steinbrunner Yankee Stadium case were valued at $275.8 million.  When Johnston asked Randy Levine, the Yankees’ president, about the morality of this gift, Levine replied that gifts from taxpayers to those who invest in big projects “are the way government works today.”

 

b.       The US Navy paid $450 million to Steinbrunner for shipbuilding.  Steinbrunner produced nothing for this payment.  The $450 million payment was a massive transfer of tax funds, mainly from the middle class, to the wealthy.

 

c.       In the 1970s, George W. Bush (current US president) put together a partnership to develop a sports stadium for the Texas Rangers baseball team.  This effort accomplished the condemnation of the Mathes family’s Arlington horse ranch, for which they were initially offered $800,000 and later, after protest, $5 million.  The subsidy of the city of Arlington for this project was valued at $202.5 million.  Johnston recounts, “The investors that Bush assembled paid $86 million for the Rangers ball team, and sold it for $250 million.  The $164 million profit was $38.5 million less than the subsidy.”  In this case, all of the wealthy generated by this project was subsidized by the public.  Bush made $17 million on this deal.  All of this value was obtained from land, and the profit from destroying the land (converting it from natural use to concrete and steel) should have logically accrued to the public, not to the private destroyers of the land.

 

d.       Through elaborate and intensive programs of lies, deception, distortion, subterfuge and incentives, retailing giants such as Cabela’s sporting goods store chain and Wal-Mart department store chain induce local communities to grant them incredible tax advantages.  These advantages are paid for by the middle class, through their taxes.  The profits go to the retailers.  Socialize the costs and privatize the benefits.  (The replacement of small local businesses by retailing giants such as Cabela and Wal-Mart is not only a rip-off off middle-class taxes, but it is socially destructive.  A local hardware or sporting goods owner / manager making a good salary on his own may be lucky to make $13.50 an hour as a department manager supervising people making $8.00 an hour.  In many cases, the community never realizes the economic gains promised in unrealistic projections and scenarios.  The megaretailer supports fewer jobs at lower wages – but a lot more money for the wealthy elite.)

 

In his book, Johnston provides detailed description of numerous examples of the rip-off of the middle class to funnel wealth to the wealthy elite.

 

I had lunch a few days ago with friends, one of whom recounted a local example of the government’s transferring massive wealth to the wealthy, using taxpayer money.  There were 2300 acres of natural land, including an impressive waterfall, up for sale near Brevard, North Carolina.  There were three bidders for the land, including the State of North Carolina.  The top bid was nine million dollars, and the State’s bid was eight million dollars (this was a luncheon conversation, so the amounts I am citing may not be exact).  The State could have paid the nine million dollars and taken the land (under the right of eminent domain), but declined to do so.  The winner (a developer friend of my friend) put in some gravel access roads and surveyed lots for a housing development.  The State then changed its mind, and decided that it wanted the land.  The developer had put a price tag of $500,000 on each lot, so that the putative value of the property was now 23 million dollars.  The State paid the developer 23 million dollars for the land.  All of this money came from taxpayers.  It should have been reasoned that the developer should get his nine million dollars, plus the money he spent on putting in the gravel access roads and surveying the lots – a few thousand dollars.  Instead, the State granted the developer a fabulous windfall, all courtesy of the North Carolina taxpayer.

 

Use of the right of eminent domain is an egregious example of how government transfers vast riches from the public to the wealthy.  Johnston recounts many other examples of ways in which governments transfer taxpayer money to the wealthy elite, including the granting of tax subsidies (in which a developer or new industry locating in a community pays no taxes for many years and the foregone revenues are replaced by the middle class taxpayers); direct subsidies to housing developers; granting of city-owned land to developers; refusal to develop land registry systems, so that private title insurance companies collect unnecessary fees forever, and lawyers are paid excessive fees to facilitate property transfers (in stark contrast to Britain, where transfer of land costs a mere $25, in 2005 a single title insurance company (Stewart Information Services of Houston) collected $1.9 billion in title insurance premiums); use of public funds (e.g., the US government’s “Superfund”) to pay for pollution caused by private firms; privatization of public services such as water, sewer, garbage, electricity, communications, transportation, medical services, public safety and defense services, allowing private firms to make billions of dollars in profits, all representing excess charges to consumers; granting of patents and franchises to private firms to make excess profits (e.g., pharmaceutical products, sports franchises); failure to prosecute white-collar criminals, such as those who change dates on stock options.

 

Most of the schemes by which government transfers taxpayer funds to the wealthy are well disguised, such as tax forgiveness and franchises, rather than out-and out grants.  In many cases, the taxpayer cannot see an actual transfer of tax dollars to the recipient – the taxpayer just pays more in taxes and the beneficiary pays less, or the beneficiary realizes his profit in a transaction following the condemnation and transfer of land.  Cay does not discuss the outrageous practice of allowing heads of financial institutions to make (and keep!) incomes of tens of millions of dollars per year, and then covering their losses with taxpayer funds when their firms go bankrupt (such as in the case of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac).

 

Neither does Cay document the Savings and Loan scandal of the 1980s, under which US taxpayers covered losses to the tune of $150 billion (small by the magnitudes of today’s financial scandals, but a massive amount in the 1980s).  The details of this scheme for funneling billions of dollars of taxpayers’ money into the pockets of wealthy bankers are presented in the book, Chain of Blame (2008) by Paul Muolo and Mathew Padilla.  The mechanism by which the government promoted and accomplished this vast transfer of wealth from taxpayers to bankers was much simpler than the mechanism used today (securitizing bundles of mortgages; creating very complicated derivative instruments based on mortgage debt).  All that was done back then was for the government to insure the accounts of S&L depositors (to $40,000 until 1980, and to $100,000 from 1980), and then “deregulate” the S&Ls so that a single investor could own a Savings and Loan and invest in anything, not just home mortgages.  Investors flocked to set up new S&Ls, invested in risky projects, paid themselves massive fees, and allowed the S&L to fail – the US taxpayer then picked up the tab, as the industry crashed.  Here follows an excerpt from Chain of Blame, summarizing the history of the S&L fiasco:

 

“When [President] Reagan signed the Garn-St Germain bill, he said the legislation would create more housing, more jobs, and growth for the economy.  ‘All in all,’ he proclaimed, ‘I think we’ve hit the jackpot.’

 

“The bill, which applied only to S&Ls that were incorporated using a federal charter, allowed these insured depositories to invest 40 percent of their assets in nonresidential real estate. This was a huge change for an industry that had done one thing and one thing only for 150 years – have all of its deposits in home mortgages. It also allowed S&Ls to have just one shareholder {Footnote: Previously, the rule mandated that there be a minimum of 400 shareholders with no one owning more than 25 percent}, and in a move that attracted real estate developers of all stripes, it permitted an entrepreneur to purchase an S&L and capitalize it using noncash assets such as land. The developers noticed. They began buying thrifts or starting them from scratch (de novo). And there was one last ingredient that led to the S&L mess: State legislatures saw their power (and donations from real estate and financial servicebusinesses) begin to decline because the federal S&L charter had been liberalized. (Why give money to state pols when the power rested with the feds?) Some states decided to best the Garn-St Germain Act by offering owners of state-chartered S&Ls even greater investment powers. That's where California assemblyman Pat Nolan came in.

 

“Two things were golden in California: its hills and its housing market, a market that was financed by S&Ls. A Republican from Glendale, Nolan {Footnote: In 1988 Nolan, who had become California Assembly minority leader, resigned his position amid reports that he and other state legislators had been targeted by an FBI sting operation investigating influence peddling and political corruption. Nolan denied all wrongdoing.} was an associate of a number of S&L executives. He sponsored the Nolan Act, which became state law in early 1983, a few months after Reagan signed the bipartisan Garn-St Germain bill. The Nolan Act made Garn-St Germain look conservative by comparison. To motivate entrepreneurs to open new (or buy existing) California-chartered S&Ls, the law allowed virtually anyone to own a thrift, attract as many deposits as they could, and invest 100 percent of those deposits not just in real estate (commercial or residential) but in an asset class called ‘direct investments.’ What was a direct investment? Answer: anything you wanted. Really.

 

“The Nolan Act ignited a rush by real estate developers to open new S&Ls – from south of San Diego up north to small nook-and-cranny towns scattered around Santa Rosa in the Napa Valley. The only thing the state required – besides a valid application – was that the person or persons owning the new thrift have a minimum net worth of $2 million (and land counted). ‘Can you imagine?’ later remarked Edwin Gray, chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board (FHLBB), the nation's federal S&L regulator. ‘Any business, any entrepreneur [in California] could get a charter and could run whatever operation he wanted on the credit of the U.S. government. Imagine that.  You could choose any business you wanted to be in. Just incredible.’

 

“Gray, a former PR man for Reagan when he was governor of California, was stuck with the job of overseeing a whole new breed of S&L operator. {Footnote: Gray inherited the job in May 1983 from Richard Pratt, a college professor from Utah and a crony of Senator Garn's, After leaving the FHLBB, Pratt would become a top executive at Merrill Lynch. His tasks included, among other things, convincing S&Ls to securitize residential mortgages through Merrill.}  He had one major disadvantage – a lack of bank examiners. The philosophy of the Reagan administration was that deregulation meant fewer regulators and examiners, so their numbers were cut. At the same time, many states trimmed their examination staffs as well. This new generation of S&L operator—particularly in California—had nothing in common with George Bailey. Few of them would make home mortgage lending their mission. After Garn-St Germain and the Nolan Act, it wasn't long before a whole new round of S&L failures rippled across the United States like a trail of fallen dominoes. The autopsy of each looked much the same as the others: A developer buys or starts a savings and loan and begins financing commercial projects that he has a stake in, usually paying himself huge development fees and not worrying much about the financial viability of the deal.

 

“In time, the S&L crisis—thanks to federal and then state deregulation – would cost the American taxpayers $150 billion, and that didn't even include the interest costs on the government borrowing that much money. Wall Street had a role in the crisis as well. When deregulation came along, Merrill Lynch saw a business opportunity and jumped on it. S&Ls accepted two types of deposits, retail accounts from their neighborhood customers (the little old ladies with their passbook accounts) and so-called brokered deposits, where a large investment banking house would bundle together accounts of $100,000 {Footnote: In 1980, Congress, in a late-night session, increased the federal insurance on deposits to $100,000 from $40,000.} and shop this money nationwide to fast growing S&Ls that were in search of funds they could use to finance their commercial real estate projects. Merrill was among the largest of all deposit brokers working the phones on Wall Street. When the FHLBB's Gray tried to rein in rogue S&L operators he felt were abusing deregulation, he clashed repeatedly with Reagan's Treasury secretary, Donald Regan. Who was Don Regan? Answer: the former head of Merrill Lynch. One thing he had claimed credit for was creating a market for brokered deposits.”

 

Income Taxes on the Middle Class Cover the Gambling Losses of the Wealthy

 

The thing that is so incredible about the government bailouts of failed banks (both the S&Ls of the 1980s and those of today’s financial crisis) is that the government simply covers the losses of the bankers, and the taxpaying public never demands that the ill-gotten gains of the wealthy bankers and developers be taken away from them.  They are simply allowed to keep their millions in fees, profits and salaries, which were in fact all paid for a few years later by taxpayers.  Why do the American taxpayers stand for this?  Why do they not insist that the people who in fact ripped them off (by means of high-risk investments insured by the taxpayers) be stripped of their wealth?  It is mind-boggling that they can get away with this.  Is the US public just plain stupid, or do they enjoy being screwed?  The government presented the wealthy elite with fabulous opportunities for “moral hazard,” and they took full advantage of it.  At the same time, however, these people were bankers.  They had a responsibility to the public, who insured the accounts.  They abrogated their fiduciary responsibility.  Why are they not held accountable?  In China, perpetrators of such egregious crimes against society are routinely executed.  Why are these robber-barons not stripped of their wealth and executed?  Here in the US, they are allowed to keep all of their ill-gotten gains.  They retire on millions of dollars, while the people that they scammed are mired in debt.  If the American citizenry were in fact a people, it would rise up against these crimes, and do away with the criminals.  And that would start with the government “free-market” regulators who were the root source of the problem, including Reagan, Clinton, and the Bushes (and most members of Congress).  It would include Richard Fuld (former CEO of the now-defunct Lehman Brothers investment bank) and Henry Paulson, current US Secretary of the Treasury), and countless others who head and manage commercial and investment banks and other financial institutions.  It would include the former heads of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and Bear Stearns and AIG.  These people amassed fortunes by conning and scamming the US taxpayer, by gambling in games in which the US government guaranteed to cover their losses.  It is time to take the money back and to punish these con men (the bankers and their government-overseer collaborateurs alike).  They should be sitting in pillories and stocks in Times Square, not enjoying their millions of taxpayer-covered gambling losses.

 

Today’s financial crisis is a repeat of the S&L crisis of the 1980s, just with more complex financial instruments (bundled mortgages, securitized debt, derivatives).  The essence of the scam is the same.  The US government promotes a high level of moral hazard, encourages bankers to engage in extremely risky financial schemes, and then bails them out when their big bets go bad (since their banks are “too big to be allowed to fail”), using taxpayer money (most of which is taken from the middle class).  Once again, nothing is being done to strip the wealthy bankers and politicians of their ill-gotten gains.  The public just stands idly by and gets totally ripped off.  This is a salient feature of taxpayer-funded government subsidies to the wealthy: the wealthy and the government leaders work hard to make it look as if it isn’t their fault.  They protest, as they did for Hurricane Katrina and 9/11 that “it couldn’t have been foreseen, and it isn’t their fault.”  It “just happened.”  But it didn’t “just happen.”  It was orchestrated by the wealthy elite and implemented by their US government thralls.  These people are criminals.  They are traitors.  They are deceivers.  They are thieves in the night.  They should be stripped of their wealth and held accountable for their treachery.  (I have read only the first three chapters of Chain of Blame, covering just the S&L scandal.  The book continues through the current financial crisis – I’ll update this section when I finish the book.)

 

There is a massive conspiracy going on in the United States.  It is a conspiracy between the US government and the wealthy elite.  The financial sector dreams up financial schemes – raw gambling – that generate fabulous amounts of money if the players win, and the government agrees to cover the losses if they lose – and lets them keep all their earlier winnings.  The middle class taxpayer, whose taxes on hard work pay for this, is played as a sap.  He is conned.  He is told that this is “free market” free enterprise, and that private banking and free trade are good for everyone.  He is told that is “Wall Street” fails, then “Main Street” will also fail, and he will lose his pension plan.  He is never given options, such as nationalizing the US central bank (Federal Reserve).  He is threatened with total disaster if his “representatives” do not instantly approve bailouts for the wealthy elite.  He is seduced – or forced – into placing his retirement funds in unstable markets, instead of the bank.  When the markets fail, the government bails out the financiers, but not the pensioner.  The US government and Wall Street have colluded to scam the middle-class taxpayer.  They have destroyed his quality of life.  They are forcing him to pay for the gambling losses of the wealthy elite.  They are laughing all the way to the bank – in many cases, they are the bank.  How long, O Lord, how long?

 

The primary characteristic of a fascist state is one in which government and business work hand in hand.  Another characteristic is disdain of the state for the individual.  The United States is now a fascist state, working solely for the benefit of the wealthy elite.

 

I skimmed through a recent book, The Uprising (2008), by David Sirota.  It describes the discontent of the American people with what is going on.  He documents that the quality of life has been declining for most Americans, but it appears that they have no idea why or what to do about it.  He writes a lot about Lou Dobbs and his nightly CNN television program in which he rails against the status quo.  He writes:

 

“The Lou Dobbs phenomenon is, at its root, backlash politics. He exposes our messy, unfair, chaotic, out-of-control world, from our Swiss cheese borders to our lobbyist-rigged trade policies to a persistent narcotics problem. And viewers respond because it successfully ‘taps into’ their desire to resurrect our collective memory of the ethereal, fuzzy Golden Age of America's past – that sepia-toned simpler time when national security was ensured; citizens were educated, engaged, and drug-free; politicians were "statesmen"; the working stiff made a decent wage; and, above all else, laws were followed.

 

“This last point is probably the most important of all. In an unfathomably complex world where the click of a mouse in a Tokyo skyscraper can eliminate an Ohio city's entire job base, or where a ragtag band of bourgeois Saudis can kill three thousand Americans in a few hours, Dobbs seizes on a frantic public's desperation for more control and order.

 

“That's really what Dobbs's whole immigration schtick is all about. Whether his audience is workers worried about losing their jobs to undocumented laborers, suburbanites who fear a cultural takeover of their neighborhoods, or even legal immigrants who want others to have to go through the same ordeal they went through to become naturalized, the base emotion drawing them to Dobbs is a pining for a mythological past when control and order dominated.

The whole posture comes from Dobbs's innately authoritarian disposition. He is the guy who says that if he reported it, it is fact. He is the strongman who comes right into your living room every night to tell you that he's out there protecting you from the lawbreakers, whoever they may be – and that is comforting to a public fearful of the ever-increasing chaos outside.

 

“‘I don't believe there is too much immigration,’ as he told me. ‘I believe that we're not in control of our immigration policies or what's happening in this country.’

 

“’This country has always had elites,’ he says.  ‘But those elites, for the most part, worked in the national interest and for the common good, were united in understanding of our national ideals and values, and worked diligently and virtuously.’”

 

Sirota’s book has a misleading title.  The “uprising” that Sirota refers to is nothing more than the frustration of Americans in seeing their country out of control.  It is an uprising of the emotions of confusion, discontent, and anger, not an uprising of action based on rage against those who have destroyed the country and a quality middle-class way of life.

 

My wife and I took a holiday in New Orleans a few months ago.  While we were there we took a city tour.  About half the tour was spent viewing the damage caused by Hurricane Katrina and the reconstruction that is underway.  Our tour guide informed us that the government had instituted a program of “rapid return” for people who had had their homes destroyed.  I asked why the government was encouraging people to return, when the land was obviously in a flood plain, and great expense was required to maintain the levees to reduce the chance of flooding.  Our guide told us that “we have freedom in America – everyone is free to live wherever he wants.”  I said that that was fine, but in this case the public was being asked to spend millions to rebuild homes that were in a flood plain, should never have been there in the first place, and certainly should not be rebuilt subsidized by public funds.  He explained that the US Army Corps of Engineers had “screwed up, and not built the levees strong enough, and therefore the taxpayers must pay two-thirds of the cost to replace the damaged infrastructure.  The US Army screws up, and therefore the taxpayers must pay more?  How do you figure that one?  This is just one more example of where the taxpayers’ money is transferred to the wealthy (builders of homes and levees).  Why do the US taxpayers put up with this nonsense?

 

The North American Union

 

The book, The Late Great USA (2007) by Jerome Corsi discusses the efforts underway to combine the US, Canada and Mexico into a single country, the North American Union.  I discussed this briefly in a preceding section.  Corsi also discusses some of the ways in which the US worker is getting ripped off.  One of those ways is promoting free trade, yet not having a tax system that is harmonized with the rest of the world, i.e., a value-added tax (VAT).  Corsi points out that the VAT is charged on US goods entering China and removed from Chinese goods exported to the US.  This is in accordance with WTO regulations.  The problem is that we use an income tax, and most of the rest of the world uses the VAT.  No adjustment is made for income taxes in international trade.  This “mismatch” of the US tax system with that of most of its significant trading partners places US goods at a severe disadvantage, and is a significant factor in the loss of US manufacturing to foreign countries.  The US government doesn’t give a damn.  (I know a lot about tax theory – I once wrote a book on tax reform (mainly on the VAT), posted at http://www.foundationwebsite.org/VAT.htm .)

 

An excerpt about the VAT from Corsi’s book is presented in the Appendices.

 

Corsi and other writers imply that there is something “unfair” about other country’s using the VAT, and our suffering a trade disadvantage because of it.  That is our problem, not theirs.  We choose to use a “direct tax” – the income tax – as the basis for our tax system.  When you imply that everyone else is wrong and you are right, it is important to reexamine your position.  The US deliberately chooses to adopt a tax system that is not in harmony with the rest of the world.  What is worse, the income tax has a large number of other disadvantages that the VAT does not (see my book for more on this).

 

Another point that Corsi makes is the fact that the US has entered into “totalization” agreements with many countries.  Corsi writes:

 

“The United States currently has totalization agreements with twenty-one countries. The agreements allow workers to combine earnings from foreign countries with earnings in the United States to qualify for Social Security benefits. The agreement with Mexico would allow a Mexican worker to qualify for Social Security benefits after only six quarters (eighteen months) of employment in the United States. A U.S. worker typically needs forty calendar quarters (120 months) to receive U.S. Social Security benefits.”

 

When I applied for Social Security Benefits on reaching age 65 (last year), I was informed that I did not qualify for disability benefits (in case I was applying for any, which I was not).  The reason for this was that I had recently worked outside of the US, and had not contributed to the Social Security program for the two years while I worked in Botswana (for the Central Bank, taxed at 25 percent of my total income).  The fact that I had contributed to Social Security at the maximum amount for most years since about 1958 was not a factor.  The fact that Mexican illegal aliens can qualify for benefits after a few months, when I, a US citizen, cannot after a lifetime of contributing at the maximum level, is an outrage.  It would appear that the US government cares more about illegal aliens than it does about US citizens.

 

One of the best discussions of the systematic destruction of America by the US government is presented by Pat Choate in his book, Dangerous Business (2008).  Choate was Ross Perot’s vice presidential running mate in 1996.  The book has a lot of content, and is well worth reading.  I present some excerpts from it in the Appendices.

 

Urban Sprawl; Destruction of the City by the Automobile

 

James Howard Kunstler is one of the few writers who seems to grasp the significance of the role that oil has played in changing US society, and of the massive change that will occur as global oil production declines.  He has written four nonfiction books, three dealing with cities (both in general and with respect to the influence that oil has played in their evolution) and one on the changes that will soon occur as Peak Oil passes.  The three books on cities are The Geography of Nowhere (1993), Home from Nowhere (1996) and The City in Mind (2001).  The book on life after Peak Oil is called The Long Emergency (2005, 2006).

 

The City in Mind describes the evolutionary history and current status of several of the world’s great cities, including Paris, Atlanta, Mexico City, Berlin, Las Vegas, Rome, Boston and London.

 

In The Geography of Nowhere Kunstler describes in detail the tremendous decline in the quality of social life that has resulted from cheap oil and mass automobile transportation.  He also describes some of the major economic events that have paralleled the age of the automobile.

 

Kunstler ends his book with a discussion of “englightened” architectural practices that move in the direction of making our cities more “human-friendly.”  After presenting powerful arguments that cheap and plentiful oil and the private automobile have destroyed our cities and social life, these suggestions seem very weak.  It would appear that a strong, vibrant, meaningful social life will not return to human society until after the passage of cheap oil, or at least, after the passage of the private automobile.  Civil society will not return until people can easily walk to most of the places they visit, and start living together.

 

In the book Home from Nowhere, written three years after The Geography of Nowhere, Kunstler analyzes further the impact of the automobile on human society.  He also discusses architectural practices that would make our cities more livable.  As I mentioned before, it appears that little will change until the era of cheap oil ends, and along with it, the era of mass privately owned automobiles.

 

Kunstler’s book, The Long Emergency, presents an excellent description of the social and economic impact of cheap oil on our society, and a discussion of what to expect as global oil runs out.

 

Extracts from Kunstler’s books are presented in the Appendices.  Although excellent, these books are not widely read, and so I extract from them at some length.

 

The US Government Is Destroying Traditional US Culture

 

Culture does matter.  Everywhere in the world where Hispanic culture spread from the Spanish Empire, the present culture is dominated by corruption and oppression or ignoring of masses of poor.  The same is true of Indian and Chinese culture.  And Middle-Eastern and African cultures.  Those cultures are now being imported into the US on a massive scale (and to Canada, Australia, and many European countries as well).  The US middle class will soon join the ranks of the Indian untouchables, the Chinese peasants, and the Latino peasants, as those cultures infect and eventually destroy US Northern European culture that founded the country and made it great.  Who benefits?  The wealthy elite, who are quite comfortable with the concept of a small, rich oligarchy supported by masses of poor slaves.

 

This is the system that has operated throughout most of human history.  America – a country founded by its leaders “for the people” – is an anomaly.  Actually, I should use the past tense here, since that America no longer exists.  This utopian society was bound to disappear.  As Thomas Jefferson observed, the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.  It has been a long time since the tree of liberty has been watered.  The government no longer serves the people.  America’s current masters are tyrants.  America’s current leaders are not of the founders’ ilk – they are typical of those in power from time immemorial, who use power to serve themselves, not the people.  Unlike the founders, those now in power in the US do not wish to share their power with the middle class, and they are actively trying to destroy it (its wealth and status, not the people).  America’s leaders have “regressed to the mean.”

 

In 1776 America’s Founders – its wealthy elite of the time – established a country for the people.  That was a very noble idea, and very counter to the desires of the wealthy elites throughout history.  Today’s US wealthy elite, like those of most of history, do not align themselves with the views of America’s Founders.  They want only for the masses to serve them, to increase their wealth.  They have transformed the country from the one that the Founders conceived and established into one that serves them, not the people.  This has been the way of the world for most of history, but it was not what that America’s founders conceived.  With a well-off middle class, America for a time was “out of step” with the rest of the world and history, and today’s wealthy elite are moving to rectify this anomaly and return them to their usual station of poverty.  They have set up programs to transfer much of the taxes paid by the middle class to the wealthy elite (e.g., for security and medical costs).  They have established a money-and-banking system based on debt-based money and compound interest.  They encourage the granting of loans to people who don’t need them, simply to entrap them (through compound interest) in unmanageable debt.  They have adopted policies (mass immigration, massive international free trade, and open borders) that have despoiled the environment, crowded the country with people, and reduced the quality of life of the middle class.  They have imposed a massive financial tax burden on the middle class, often to pay for programs and wars that it does not want.  It has imprisoned one percent of its adult population.  It has transferred much of its manufacturing capacity overseas, increasing our dependence on foreign entities and reducing meaningful work opportunities for its own people.  The US government is no longer for the people, but is for the wealthy and against the people.  The US government is now the enemy of the people.  (Unfortunately for the wealthy elite, the process of unconstrained economic growth is destroying the biosphere.  Like a cancer, the system of growth-based economics has sewn the seeds of its own destruction.  It is totally unsustainable, and is now nearing an end.)

 

When I arrived in the Houston airport a few months ago from an overseas trip, I noticed that almost all of the US immigration and customs staff were from foreign cultures – mainly Asians and Latinos.  Through its policies of mass immigration, the US government is giving the country and the culture away to foreigners.  This was your country.  But it is not any longer.  Illegal aliens now protest in mass street rallies that they are being discriminated against, and they are demanding citizenship.  What gall!  What chutzpah!  It shows how low their respect is for the US government and the US citizenry.  These people are criminal alien invaders.  Demanding citizenship!  They are fast replacing the original US population, who are standing by, doing nothing.  If the original citizens do decide to do something, they will be charged with hate crimes and vigilantism, and thrown in jail.

 

In Canada, mass immigration has also made tremendous changes.  Canada has now lost its British flavor.  The flag has changed, the national anthem has changed, and the people have changed.  When I was working in Toronto a few years ago for Canada Trust, one morning (arriving for work) I was in the elevator with about ten other people – every single one of them was Asian – I was the only Caucasian in the elevator.  Vancouver is now referred to as Canada’s Asian capital.  While I was working in Botswana a few years ago, my next-door neighbor was a Canadian.  When he and his wife returned to Canada (Ottawa) for home leave, as he entered the airport he was greeted by a turbaned Sikh, who proclaimed, “Valkohm to my Kaahntry!”  When he left, my friend thought that it was his country.  No longer.  His generation gave it away.

 

Recently (May, 2008), it was reported that native South Africans have turned to slaughtering illegal immigrants.  As is the case with the United States, the present South African government is allowing mass immigration.  The South African people are very unhappy about this, and are now taking matters into their own hands.  That violent response will soon be evident in the United States, as Peak Oil passes and the quality of life in America plummets.

 

A few months ago I attended a friend’s wedding in Virginia.  As we passed through South Hill, Virginia, on our way back home, we stopped at a local restaurant for dinner.  Although South Hill is little more than a dot on a map in rural Virginia, and the restaurant had an innocuous Anglo name (the Down Home Buffet), every one of the waiters (three males and one female), and the cashier, were (Asian) Indian.  Without mass immigration, there would be no Indians in South Hill, or anywhere else in America.  All of those jobs would be filled by native-culture US workers, or the jobs would not exist.  If the jobs did not exist, then we would save much natural land and reduce energy consumption, but that would not generate wealth for the plutocrats, and so they will never allow this to happen.  We do not need to give our country and environment away – particularly to people from cultures that have destroyed theirs!

 

Food, Diet and Medicines

 

One of the very significant areas in which the quality of life has declined for Americans is in the area of food and diet.  As the population soars and more food is required than can be produced by basic, “organic” farming methods (primitive agriculture), the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, preservatives and other chemicals (e.g., coloring agents, stabilizers) increases (along with other high-energy inputs such as irrigation, tractor plowing, and mechanized harvesting, processing and distribution).  If you read the labels on foods, you will see and may be surprised by how many chemicals are added to most foods.   As more and more food is imported (now at 40 percent), we have less and less control over the use of toxic chemicals on our food.  This decline in security was evidenced several times this past year with the importation of poisonous food from Communist China (e.g., fish, pet food).  The US government has done nothing to restrict the importation of food and refuses to enforce food labeling laws so that consumers can see which food is imported (since this might hurt foreign trade and reduce incomes for the wealthy elite).  The importation of massive quantities of food from foreign countries increases the risk of contamination of food from toxins and from disease, such as mad-cow disease and hepatitis.

 

It is believed by many that the substantial increase in many diseases over the past several decades, such as colon/rectal cancer, allergies, diabetes, asthma, autism and attention deficit / hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), are the direct result of the consumption of low-quality food, poor diet, hydrogenated oils, refined carbohydrates, excessive beef, and a variety of synthetic chemicals, including preservatives, stabilizers, coloring agents, and flavorings.  We have poisoned our bodies and pickled our guts, and allergies, obesity, and cancer are the unsurprising result.  There is in America an epidemic of obesity.  Look around you in any public place, such as a shopping mall or restaurant, and you will see many obscenely fat young people.  When I was a boy, the only time you saw people like this was at the “fat lady” exhibit at a county fair.  These bodies should be lithe, strong and vibrant, not grossly overweight.  This is where the country’s leaders have taken it.

 

In addition to being suspected of causing much disease, the choice of foods has a serious impact on the environment.  The consumption of massive amounts of fish has caused fish stocks to collapse catastrophically in many areas, particularly around poor countries that are unable to protect their fishing areas.  The consumption of massive amounts of beef is contributing substantially to global deforestation and greenhouse gas production (methane efflatus from cattle).  If humankind would consume at a lower trophic level (e.g., eat grains instead of feeding them to cattle and then eating the cattle), then the demand for food would be substantially reduced.

 

There are increasing reports of medicines that have caused much disease.  Thalidomide was the first big “wake-up call.”  Recent drug recalls have included a variety of painkillers, such as the nonsteroidal anti-inflamatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Vioxx (rofecoxib) and Celebrex (celecoxib), which are linked to heart attacks and strokes, and phenylpropanolamine (“PPA”), a decongestant that may cause hemorrhagic stroke.  There are on the order of ten thousand deaths annually from NSAIDS, which includes ibuprofen and naproxin.  Just recently it was announced that Ritalin, a drug used to treat ADHD, may cause heart disease or stroke, and that bisphenol-A (BPA), a common ingredient in plastic drink bottles and drink-can linings, is linked to a variety of diseases, including breast and prostate cancer.  (If you will turn a plastic bottle over, you will see several triangles (“recycling codes”) containing numbers such as 1, 2, 5, and 7.  Bottles having (only) codes 1, 2 or 5 are considered nontoxic.  If the number 7 is present, don’t use the product, and don’t use the bottle as a “drinking water” bottle.  (See People Magazine, May 19, 2008, page 146.))  A good friend of mine was recently prescribed some medicine for a sinus infection.  The drug caused his prostate to enlarge, and he is now facing prostate surgery.  The medical establishment is “rubbing its hands” over the large amount of additional business generated by its “wonder” drugs.  When you hear the list of dangerous side effects of many of these drugs on television ads, it seems that the “cure” that they offer is in many instances worse than the original disease.

 

The television ads promoting powerful drugs with terrible side-effects are amazing, from the point of view of their warnings (“contraindications”).    Boniva (ibandronate), used to treat osteoporosis, may cause deep venous thrombosis, pulmonary embolism or retinal vein thrombosis.  Evista (raxoxifene), also used to treat or prevent osteoporosis, has similar side effects and may cause kidney stones.  Orencia (abatacept), used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, is suspected of causing cancer.  Abilify (aripiprazole), suggested for treatment of manic-depression, may lead to coma or death.  Advair (fluticasone propionate and salmeterol inhalation powder), suggested for preventing asthma attacks, may increase the risk of asthma-related death.  Symbicort (budesonide), a steroid used to treat asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), may increase the incidence of asthma-related death.  Another COPD medicine, Spiriva (tiotropium bromide) has the following side-effects: upper respiratory infection, dry mouth, cough, hoarseness, trouble swallowing, drowsiness, white patches in mouth or throat, sinus infection, sore throat, bladder infection, abdominal pain, constipation, indigestion, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, muscle pain, yeast infection, nosebleeds, stuffy or runny nose, worsening breathing problems, severe constipation, difficulty passing urine, fast heart rate, irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia), vision changes, chest pain, signs of allergic reaction (including unexplained rash, hives, itching, unexplained swelling, wheezing, or difficulty breathing or swallowing), leg pain, voice changes, unusual sensations (such as burning or tingling), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), canker sores, high cholesterol, high blood sugar (hyperglycemia), bone pain, depression, shingles, cataracts.  Singulair (montelukast), also used to prevent asthma attacks, has side effects that include upper-respiratory infections and sore throat.  When I was a child, asthma was rare.  With all of the allergens that are produced by intensive industrialization, asthma and other allergies are now common.  It was reported by the government on June 11, 2008, that Americans spent eleven billion dollars in 2005 on doctors’ bills, prescription drugs and other treatments for allergies.  Intense industrialization has led to a large increase in allergies, which generates a lot of income for the medical establishment.  Furthermore, many of these medications have severe side effects that lead to even more medical expense.  What a racket!

 

Recent reports have been presented that some of the nation’s drinking water is now laced with pharmaceuticals.

 

Ibuprofen, a painkiller freely available “over the counter” in the United States, is responsible for perhaps ten thousand deaths a year.  In addition, it causes countless cases of kidney damage, particularly in persons with diabetes.  My wife is one such case – she took ibuprofen over a considerable time, and it destroyed the capillaries in her kidneys.  All of a sudden, she had fourth-stage renal disease – one step away from a dialysis machine.  She now must take Aranest (darbepoetin alfa) injections, costing $2,500 - $3000 every two or three weeks for the rest of her life.  From some points of view, she may be considered fortunate: For many ibuprofen users, the damage caused results in end-stage renal disease – kidney failure – and they must be on kidney dialysis machines for the rest of their lives.  The cost of kidney dialysis is about $20,000 - $40,000 per month.  For younger otherwise-healthy patients who qualify for a kidney transplant, the cost of the immuno-suppressant drugs required to keep recipients alive can cost about $80,000 - $150,000 per month (this is in addition to the cost of the operation).

 

Why would our government allow the unconstrained purchase of a drug that causes such great damage?  The answer is obvious – the money.  For every case of fourth-stage renal disease, the medical establishment makes about $5,000 per month.  For every case of end-stage renal disease, the medical establishment makes about $30,000 per month if dialysis is used or about $115,000 per month per month if a kidney transplant is used.  If you have end-stage renal disease, the government will pay for these costs under the Medicare program.  This money comes from taxes – most of it from middle-class taxpayers (since they pay most of the taxes).  The government promotes the use of ibuprofen knowing full well that it causes an epidemic of renal disease, for treatment of which it transfers massive amounts of taxes from the middle class to the medical establishment.  This program doesn’t cost the government a dime, since its costs are paid by taxes, mostly from the middle class (actually, nothing costs the government anything, since its revenues are derived from taxes).  From the viewpoint of transferring massive amounts of money from the middle class to the wealthy elite (medical establishment), the ibuprofen program is a smashing success.  (The US government is always eager to spend taxpayer money, since requires the middle class to work longer and harder, and increases GDP.  It tries to give US-taxpayer tax money away even when it is not wanted, such as in the case of the Indian earthquake a few years ago.  The US tried to cajole India into accepting relief aid, when it did not want it and ultimately refused to accept it.  In response to the recent Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar (Burma) (5 May 2008), the international assistance community, backed by the US government, pressured a reluctant Myanmar government to accept international aid.  The money or goods or services contributed by the US government to this effort was from US taxpayers.  Did anybody bother to ask them how they feel about this?)

 

(If ibuprofen simply killed people, then the US government would not allow it – heaven forbid the loss of 10,000 production / consumption units (a.k.a. human beings) every year.  But the fact is that, apart from causing 10,000 deaths per year, it generates very many cases of kidney disease and kidney failure (particularly among diabetics), which generates massive amounts of revenue for the medical establishment.)

 

A large number of books have been written on the subject of food, diet and medicine.  These include the following:

 

  • The Food Revolution: How Your Diet Can Help Save Your Life and Our World, by John Robbins (2001)
  • Diet for a New America, by John Robbins (1987)
  • The Weight Loss Cure “They” Don’t Want You to Know About, by Kevin Trudeau (2007)
  • Natural Cures “They” Don’t Want You to Know About, by Kevin Trudeau (2004)
  • More Natural “Cures” Revealed, by Kevin Trudeau (2006)
  • The Alcoholism and Addiction Cure, by Chris Prentiss (2007)
  • Beyond Beef: The Rise and Fall of the Cattle Culture, by Jeremy Rifkin (1992)
  • Attention Deficit Disorder, by Thom Hartmann (1997)
  • Eight Weeks to Optimum Health, by Andrew Weil (1997)
  • The Arthritis Cure, by Jason Theodosakis, Brenda Adderly and Barry Fox (1997)
  • There Is a Cure for Arthritis, by Paavo Airolo (1968)
  •  “Hyper Kids? Check Their Diet” in September 24, 2007, issue of Time magazine (attention deficit / hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) caused by food dyes and the preservative sodium benzoate).

 

The book, The Alcoholism and Addiction Cure, by Chris Prentiss, is particularly interesting.  It documents the complete failure of the US government’s approach to the country’s drug problem – that drug addiction is caused by some underlying problem, and that if this problem is not addressed and resolved, there is little hope for recovery.  Simply switching the drug user from one drug to another (e.g., heroin to methadone) is not a solution.

 

Increasing Income Gap

 

Over the past several decades, the gap between the incomes of the worker and top management has been increasing dramatically.  In his book, 10 Reasons to Abolish the IMF & World Bank (2001), Kevin Danaher presents a graph that shows the ratio of the average pay for top US corporate executives to the average pay for workers.  The ratio was 42 in 1980 and had risen to 475 by 1999.  The increasing income gap is in large measure the result of globalization (e.g., by depressing middle class wages by placing them in direct competition with poor workers around the world making a few dollars a day).  The income gap is also increased by government policies that transfer vast wealth from the middle class (such as income taxes, the health care system, and massive debt based on compound interest).

 

As long as the economy prospers, so that all workers see that their situation is improving and there is no better alternative, this situation (increasing income gap) will cause no reaction, other than criticism (and perhaps some jealousy).  Once the economy starts to decline, with the passage of Peak Oil, the workers will resent this very much.  Even then, nothing will likely be done, as long as there is no better alternative and some hope remains for a better future, at least for some.  As soon as it becomes clear to everyone that the global economy and the US economy will collapse with the passage of Peak Oil, however, the “politics of envy” will come into play, and the middle class will turn on the wealthy elite and its US government thrall, since it has nothing to lose and the satisfaction of destroying the wealthy elite to gain.

 

Political Incompetence; Political Deception

 

It Is the Electorate That Is Incompetent, Not the Government

 

The US was founded by men who were prepared to fight and kill Indians and the British to take their land from them.  The modern state of Israel exists because Ashkenazi Jews were willing to commit acts of terrorism, to invade Palestine, to ethnically cleanse it, to kill anyone who opposed their occupation, and to take control of the US economy and use its wherewithal in support of their cause.  All countries that have a will to exist behave in a similar fashion.  Countries have a legal right to exist only when they assert that right and are able to enforce / defend it.  This requires killing and dying – the blood of tyrants and patriots.

 

The US government, in blind obedience to the greedy wealthy elite who control them, has abandoned the principles of a democratic republic (government elected to represent the people).  The US Congress no longer represents the people who elect it, but the wealthy elite.  Concomitantly, it has also abandoned the principles of national leadership.  Disguised as an obsession with political correctness, it is no longer willing or able to take the strong steps required to maintain a country.   This is consistent with the rise of corporatism – the US, considered as a distinct country, is becoming increasingly irrelevant to the corporatist controllers of the world.  There are many examples to illustrate this, including the eschewing of profiling; uncontrolled borders; allowing of the takeover of US culture, economy and government by Jewish interests; and refusal to win wars, as evidenced by the Vietnam War (perhaps I should be politically correct and say “Police Action”) and the current war in Iraq.

 

Since the US government no longer represents the people, the American people no longer have anyone to represent them.  They are on their own.  They have lost their power, and, amazingly, most of them don’t even realize it.  Their leaders, who no longer represent the people, continue to tell them that the people are in charge, and the people continue to believe it.  A people who wish to control their destiny must act accordingly, consistent with the dictums of warfare and political theory (e.g., Machiavelli, Liddell-Hart).  The American people are not doing that.  They are continuing to play the silly “democracy” game in which the government and its wealthy-elite masters tell them that they are in charge, when it is in fact it is not at all true.  The American people are politically incompetent.

 

The US government is simply a pawn of the wealthy elite.  It executes whatever programs are specified to further the plans of the wealthy elite (globalization, perpetual war on terror, etc.).  In this role, the US government has been relatively effective, but every so often the people begin to suspect that it does not have their interests at heart (e.g., sale of our ports to Dubai Ports World; globalization (massive international free trade); seemingly inept response to Hurricane Katrina; imprisonment of one percent of our adult population; refusal to enforce food-labeling laws; mass immigration).  To the extent that the people are beginning to realize that the government is not working on their behalf, the government is being inept.  By and large, however, the American people are clueless that the government no longer serves the people at all, now represents the wealthy elite, and is in fact their enemy.

 

The US is the only country in the world that willingly allows millions of foreigners to invade it each year.  It is a laughing stock among nations.  It is destroying itself.  Most countries resist having their countries overrun by foreigners, if it is within their power to do so.  If you call up virtually any embassy and ask about immigrating to their country, they will laugh in your face – unless you are bringing money.  In asserting a “right” of Mexicans to illegally invade the US, Mexican President Felipe Calderon remarked not too long ago that “Wherever a Mexican is, there is Mexico.”  This view shows how someone who cares for his people acts.  If the US government cared about its own people and the country, it would apply this same principle.  For example, instead of sentencing three million Americans to prison, it might simply exile them to Mexico under a reciprocity concept that “Wherever an American is, there is America.”  Mexico endorses the stationing of 12-20 million illegal invaders in our country.  All we would be doing in this case would be sending three million Americans to Mexico.  What a deal!

 

To make things perfectly clear (oh, oh – that is Richard Nixon’s line), when I am referring to “political incompetence” in this section, I am referring mainly to the political competence of the American people rather than the US government.  The US government knows exactly what it is doing – its policies and actions serve the wealthy elite of the world (under the current system of corporatism), and it has been relatively effective in executing this role.  It is the American people who lost their government “of, by and for the people.”  They ceased to protect their culture, and it morphed into something quite different from what the country’s founders had in mind and established.  They ceased to water the tree of liberty with the blood of patriots and tyrants, and it died.

 

The American public is incredibly gullible.  Whenever the government (or a politician) “screws up,” it is asserted that it could not have possibly or reasonably foreseen the crisis coming.  This excuse is used frequently, for example, in the case of 9/11 or Hurricane Katrina, or the S&L scandal, the “gasoline” / oil / energy crisis, or the current home mortgage scandal / financial crisis.  It knew that these things were inevitable or likely to happen, and chose to do nothing about them (or, worse, as in the case of the S&L and current financial crisis, approved policies that caused them to occur or made them worse).  For some incredible reason, the electorate accepts these lies and grants the government a “free pass.”

 

The American people are politically incompetent to the point of being fatally flawed.  The US government is a little bungling at times, but executes its role as the henchman of the wealthy elite rather well, and keeps its real role well hidden from the people.  In this respect, the charade of the current US presidential campaign is something to behold.  All of the candidates act as if they are true representatives of the people, and if elected will finally solve the problems that never seem to get solved.  They are experts in “doublespeak,” duplicity and dissimulation.  All of the major candidates are very elusive and vague about specifically what they would do to improve things.  Why do the people not wonder why all of the candidates’ proposals are simply minor changes to the same basic system that is ruining their lives and the biosphere?  Why do they not wonder why nothing ever changes?  It is possible that a few new representatives arriving in Washington actually think for a time that they represent the people, but they quickly become a part of the system if they want to keep their jobs (which they do!).  US democracy is a complete sham, a shell game, a total dissimulation, the exact opposite of what it appears to be and what the Founders set up.

 

The American people have allowed the wealthy elite to hijack their government – the government that once was “for the people,” and now serves the wealthy elite.  They have given away their birthright.  How stupid and foolish.  The American people have allowed the wealthy elite to destroy their quality of life by many programs and policies, all aimed at enriching the wealthy elite: mass immigration, massive international free trade, and open borders.  They have allowed their country to be overrun by an invasion of aliens, imported solely to increase the wealth of the wealthy elite.  They are like the proverbial “frog in the pot”: if you place a frog in a pot of hot water, he will instantly jump out of it, but if you place him in a pot of cool water and slowly heat it, he will sit there until he scalds to death.  In 1972, with a population of about 200 million, few Americans would have allowed an invasion of one hundred million aliens (that happened over the next 35 years).  But the wealthy elite and their thrall government allowed the invasion to happen slowly, at the rate of about three million per year.  Few people noticed the gradual change, but after 35 years, vacation land was no longer affordable, urban sprawl was everywhere, and commute times were intolerable.  Similarly, the people did not see that their incomes were being eroded, by the policies of massive international free trade (as well as by mass immigration and open borders).  Like the frog, the US population was blissfully ignorant of the fundamental changes being made to its environment, and it had been “scalded to death.”

 

The “incremental approach” to create a North American Union over time (e.g., NAFTA in 1994, SPP in 2005, the NAFTA superhighway project currently being pushed) is another example of the effectiveness of the “frog in the pot” phenomenon.  It works amazingly well.

 

Examples of Deceptions and Lies

 

The US electorate is incredibly gullible.  As Plato observed, under a democracy the leaders will pander to the masses, promising them anything.  What is so amazing is that most of the electorate have a basic high-school education, and should be able to see through the politicians’ lies.  The litany of lies goes on and on, and the electorate, seemingly hypnotized, believes.  Examples of these lies include the following:

 

  1. Calls for “change.”  The candidates promise “change,” but they are in fact committed to a continuation of exactly the same system (mass immigration, massive international free trade, open borders, growth-based economics, debt-based money) that has destroyed our environment and the quality of life for the middle class.  Under this system, things will continue to get worse for the American people.  Why can’t they see?  In calling for “change,” the candidates do not identify the root cause of the problem, or explain what “change” will fix things.  Why can’t people see that their vacuous proposals are nothing more than “hot air”?  All the candidates want to change is who’s elected.
  2. Energy independence.  Calls for energy independence are a total deception.  In 1972, when the US population was about 200 million and the birth rate had dropped to replacement level, it was known that US oil production had peaked (in 1969, as predicted by Hubbert’s original analysis).  There was absolutely no question in 1972 that we were running out of oil.  Even if we chose to “stick our heads in the sand” and deny it or ignore it, the Arab oil embargo of 1973, with its long gas lines and skyrocketing oil prices, made this patently obvious to everyone.  The percentage of US oil that is imported has risen from about 30 percent in 1970 to almost 70 percent now.  Every year that passes, our leaders do nothing about this problem.  Who is minding the store?  What are their motives?  If the government and the politicians had been serious about “energy independence,” they would have adopted a population policy, such as zero immigration or zero population growth (ZPG) or negative population growth (NPG), to keep the US population size where it was (or even smaller).  If US population had remained at 200 million since 1972 until now, there would be no “energy crisis.”  The world’s corporatist controllers, and the puppet US government, want an energy crisis.  A scarcity of petroleum makes “big bucks” for the oil companies.  Whenever the price of oil drops, the producers move to reduce production, to promote scarcity and increase the price.  Economists strive for a scarcity of any needed resource (e.g., land), through “growth” (development), to drive the price up and generate vast wealth for their wealthy-elite masters.  The presidential candidates call of offshore drilling and drilling in the Arctic Wildlife National Refuge to increase the oil supply.  At most, these actions would provide the US with one more year’s worth of oil, a few decades from now.  And then what?  If the politicians want the US to be “energy independent,” then why are they pressing to continue an immigration policy that increases US population by three million people every year?  Why are they pressing to make 12-20 million illegal aliens citizens, instead of deporting them?  Reducing demand by deporting 12-20 million illegal aliens would be a significant help in reducing energy consumption.  Why do no citizens ask the candidates these questions?  (This is a rhetorical question – the wealthy want the 20 million illegal aliens to remain, because they are consumers and cheap labor.  They want three million more immigrants per year so that they can purchase the four million surplus houses that absurd and immoral government policies created, so that the “mortgage crisis” will come to an early end.)  US government officials have been liars and are liars.  If they did not want an energy crisis they would have taken simple and obvious steps to avoid one.  Most Americans have no idea of how dependent they are on oil.  Look around you.  Virtually everything that you see is made from oil directly (e.g., plastics); used energy from oil in its manufacture, packaging and distribution (e.g., food); and uses and will continue to use energy from oil for its operation and maintenance.  If you remove everything that depends on oil from your living space, you will see that almost nothing remains.  As oil exhausts, massive change will occur.
  3. Energy waste.  Current-day America is an incredibly wasteful society.  You can see this everywhere, from the massive landfills that receive our daily waste to the traffic jams on our highways.  Primitive farmers could produce about 10 calories of food from the expenditure of about one calorie of labor; in the US system of waste, it takes over ten calories of energy to produce one calorie of food.  Our society of urban sprawl is completely unsustainable.  It exists only because of massive amounts of cheap oil.  Oil is so cheap in the US that we burn most of it (in cars, for heating, and for electricity generation).  Now that global production is tapering off and will soon decline, this energy-wasteful society will come to an end.  The next step, if American lasts that long, will be to return to an era of electric vehicles and electric mass transportation.  Many years ago, the nation had a fine railroad system.  It systematically destroyed this system (e.g., massive population growth; destruction of electric trolley-car systems in cities by General Motors, to promote buses and cars; subsidization of highways for long-distance transportation).  Now that a return to electric rail transport is imminent, the US will seek to acquire once again the railroad rights-of-way that it once had.  But many of these have been sold off – at cheap prices – to developers.  The government will now have to repurchase them at greatly inflated cost.  The US middle class will have to pay for this.  This suits the wealthy elite just fine.  Why would the US government do such a thing?  For the money.
  4. Sustainable development, sustainable growth, sustainable prosperity.  The terms sustainable development and sustainable growth are complete oxymorons.  Economic growth cannot continue indefinitely, but all of this year’s presidential-race candidates call for continued economic growth.  President Bush continually strives to increase the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) every quarter.  He seeks to increase employment every quarter.  All of the candidates and political leaders continue to call for continued growth, but continued growth is impossible, and trying to accomplish it for even a short time is destroying the biosphere.  Growth-based economics is impossible to continue.  It is not a long-term-sustainable basis for planetary management.  Why do the world’s and country’s leaders keep calling for it, instead of a rational program to save the biosphere?  Why does no one ask them why they keep touting economic growth, when economic growth is destroying the biosphere and the quality of life for the people?  It is not that economists are unaware of “steady-state” economics (e.g., Herman Daly (Beyond Growth, For the Common Good), Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen (The Entropy Law and the Economic Process)).  It is clear that none of the presidential candidates has any grasp of economic theory.  McCain admitted once that economics was not his strong suit.  In making this inadvertent confession, he is the only one who has been the least bit honest.  It will not matter if the winner of the election surrounds himself with the nation’s leading economists: these people got us into this mess, and they will not get us out of it.  I recently (December 12, 2008) attended the graduation of my granddaughter from the Thunderbird School of Global Management.  A term that was bandied about there was “sustainable prosperity.”  While this concept is at least conceivable (since it does not require constant growth), it is absurd in the context of a planet of billions of people.  This small planet can support at most about ten million people at a high level of living.  There are going to be a lot of disappointed people just around the corner.  Vice President Dick Cheney’s remark that “the American way of life is not negotiable” sounds absurd at first look, but it is true in one sense – the American way of life is impossible for a large number of people.
  5. Alternative energy sources.  On television every day are advertisements from energy companies promoting the use of “alternative” fuels, such as coal, tar sands, and biofuels (derived from current solar energy).  But if you examine the facts, solar energy can provide only a small fraction of the energy that is currently provided by oil (and even less of that provided by fossil fuels in general).  On television last night there was an ad by an energy company (http://www.energytomorrow.org ) asserting that there was plenty of oil and gas to run 60 million cars and heat 160 million homes for the next 60 years.  Fine, but what happens after 60 years, when all of the oil is gone?  Why promote a policy that is destined to fail in 60 years?  Was the company planning to make big profits in oil for 60 years, and then see us all “fall off a cliff”?  Coal is the same.  If you don’t convert coal to oil, then we may have enough to last several hundred years.  But what do you do then?  Why use something that cannot last?  What is infinitely more important, the continued use of energy to support large human numbers and global industrialization is destroying the biosphere, e.g., causing the extinction of an estimated 30,000 species per year.  Why are these people striving to continue a system that is destroying the biosphere and causing a mass species extinction?  Why does no one take them to task?
  6. Conservation.  You continually hear people exhorting the public to “conserve.”  Recently, Matt Lauer of the Today Show was promoting a “green” effort to reduce paper usage.  But what is the point of reducing consumption of anything by one percent or ten percent or any amount, if the human population increases by one percent every year?  In the long run, conservation (being thrifty, using less) cannot possibly save a society that is premised on never-ending growth.  The only things that will work are population reduction and preservation.
  7. How to lie with statistics.  You are forever hearing economists tout that the poverty rate is declining, when in fact the number of people on the planet who are living in direst poverty is increasing by billions.  All of this poverty is being caused by economic growth – large human numbers and global industrialization.  The use of rates instead of absolute magnitudes is a blatant attempt to divert attention from this cruel fact.  Why do people let them get by with these lies, subterfuges and deceptions?
  8. The “universal health care” scam.  I wrote earlier of the candidates’ (in the US presidential election) call for universal health care under the guise of universal health insurance.  In their speeches, the candidates are very deceptive.  They invariably start out by referring to “universal health care,” and then quickly switch to the term “universal health insurance.”  They know full well that this system will do nothing to reduce the cost of medical care – in fact, it will simply make it higher, and pay what people cannot pay directly by means of taxes on the middle class.  They are engaged in a con game to generate more wealth for the medical establishment, and are doing nothing to reduce the cost of medical care.  Do people not understand that if the government uses taxes to pay for these bloated costs, it comes straight from their taxes (since the middle class is the source of the major portion of federal tax revenue)?
  9. The US government is “for the people.  You hear the candidates stress over and over that the US government is “for the people,” and that it is important to vote.  The US government was once for the people, but it is no longer.  It now serves the wealthy elite.  It has declared war on the middle class, and has adopted policies that are destroying the quality of life for the middle class and enriching the wealthy elite (often at the direct expense of the middle class).  No matter whom you vote for of the two major political parties and no matter who gets elected, they will serve the wealthy elite.  As long as the present system (of growth-based economics) continues, it will continue to destroy the biosphere and the quality of life for Americans and all people.  If meaningful “change” is to occur, this pernicious system must be ended.
  10. Nation of immigrants.  Barack Obama stated on May 23, 2008, that we should not deport the 12-20 million illegal aliens since we are a “nation of immigrants.”  This is perhaps the most idiotic statement I have ever heard.  It is either a meaningless platitude or a non sequitur.  Since all nations are “nations of immigrants,” it says very little.  More importantly, just because something was a part of our past is no reason why it should continue, and certainly not when it is now destroying us as a culture and nation.  Australia was formerly a penal colony of Britain, and settled by criminals.  Should Australia therefore only allow criminals as new immigrants?  At one point, IBM was simply a manufacturer of punched-card machines.  Should it have continued to be that forever?  Obama’s statement makes no sense at all.  The US currently has what is called a “wet-foot / dry-foot” policy toward Cuban and Haitian illegal immigrants.  If they get caught before they reach our shore, they are returned to their homelands, whereas if they set a foot on dry US soil, they get to stay.  What absolute nonsense!
  11. Free trade is beneficial.  Free trade is good for today’s wealthy elite.  It is not good for the US middle class.  It is wasteful of energy resources, and is not good for the planet.  Politicians call for free trade as if any infringement on it is a grievous sin.  Even people like Lou Dobbs, who decry the exporting of American jobs, cannot bring themselves to propose protectionist measures such as tariffs or quotas.  The most they can say is that they are for “fair trade,” whatever that means.  Politicians are a little inconsistent about free trade and oil.  One recently declared that he would not permit any oil extracted from US territory to leave the US.  Yet he would continue to import oil.  What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine.
  12. We are acting in the interest of our children.  You often hear presidential candidates claim that we need to do certain things “for our children.”  These include mainly short-term things like drilling for oil in the Arctic Wildlife National Refuge, which will make no difference to preserving our lifestyle in the long run, and simply make things worse (by extending the term of industrial activity and destroying more of nature).  By our large-scale industrial activity, we are destroying the biosphere and causing the extinction of an estimated 30,000 species per year.  By our actions, it is clear that we do not care about our children or future generations at all.  We are destroying their biosphere.  We are causing a mass species extinction.  We are polluting the planet with radioactive waste that lasts for tens of thousands of years.  We are destroying the open spaces of America with teeming masses of immigrants.  We are consuming all of our oil.  We will soon be dead – all of these things we are leaving to our children and their descendents (if there are any).  We will not suffer the burden of living in a destroyed biosphere – all future generations will.  It is clear that we do not give a whit for any of them – just for our own selfish pleasures and gratifications.  In our profligate destruction of the environment and nonrenewable resources (species, oil), we are stealing from all future generations, for a brief moment of pleasure for the current generation.  We are sentencing our children and all future generations to an impoverished existence.  We are planet destroyers.  We are beyond contempt.  When a politician asserts that we are doing something “for our children” is almost invariably a complete lie.  When you hear one assert this, ask him what his proposed action will do to stop the mass species extinction.  Through its planet-destroying growth-based economics system, the current generation of mankind is in fact sentencing its children to death.  It is setting the stage for and orchestrating the largest genocide in human history. 
  13. Focusing on the irrelevant.  A recent (July 2008) survey reported (CNN’s Wolf Blitzer’s Situation Room) that Americans are most concerned with the economy, high energy (gasoline) prices, the home mortgage crisis, the war in Iraq, and immigration (in that order, as I recall).  In the long term, these issues are irrelevant – none of them matters if we destroy the biosphere.  In the short term, the US government’s policies (mass immigration, massive international free trade, open borders, programs to transfer wealth from the middle class to the wealthy (such as the US health-care system; the War on Terror; compound-interest debt)) will make all of them worse.  The candidates may pretend to address the problems, but these problems are simply effects of the government’s policies, and they will not be “fixed” without changing or ending the system that is causing them.  The free-market economy contains a lot of random variation, and there is little that any president (or economist) can do to get rid of it.  Under a financial system of debt-based money and compound interest, debts always get out of control and periodic collapses (or debt forgiveness) always occur.  The price of gasoline and other energy sources is going to continue to rise, as fossil fuels deplete.  The only way to reduce the price of gasoline is to reduce supply relative to demand; this would mean getting rid of urban sprawl and a mass-transportation system based on individual gasoline-burning automobiles.  The candidates’ talk about increasing oil production (either in the US or globally) is utter nonsense.  The global and US economies will see increasing instability as fossil fuels deplete.  The home mortgage crisis was caused by our corrupt financial system, and will not resolve well for the homeowners.  The war in Iraq is continued by the government to transfer vast wealth from the middle class (taxpayer) to the wealthy elite (military industrial complex).  If the war in Iraq ends, the US government will simply continue the “War on Terror” at other venues.  The US government wants mass immigration, and is not about to reduce it.  The quality of life for the US middle class is going to continue to decline, as the government continues the policies and programs that have caused this and will continue to cause it.
  14. Voting machines.  For years, the government has been promoting the use of automated voting machines.  These machines have proved to be unreliable.  Worse, the waiting times during elections have grown massively longer with them (up to three hours at many polling stations in the recent election.  This is but one more example of a situation in which technology shifts the burden to the public (e.g., in the case of automated telephone systems, which work far less well than human operators and require the caller to expend much more of his personal time).  Today, the price of a voting machine is about $3,000.  Manual voting systems worked very well, and used but a little paper (most staff on election day are volunteers, with either manual or electronic voting machines).  The government has no economic basis for the move to electronic voting machines, other than to generate wealth for computer makers – and enhance its ability to control the outcomes of elections.
  15. Cherchez l’argent.  You hear many lies about the reasons why the government does things.  To justify the war in Iraq, for example, the government asserted a sequence of justifications, all of which were shown to be false: to destroy Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction; to replace Hussein because he was a cruel dictator; to bring democracy to Iraq and the Middle East; to capture Osama bin Laden; to keep the War on Terror “over there.”  The real reason was always to obtain access to Iraqi oil (see, e.g., my article It’s the Oil, Stupid, written shortly after the war began).  In his book, Illicit, Moisés Naím states the following: “In the classic scenario of film noir, detectives applied a formula to help them solve crimes: “Cherchez la femme.”  Look for the woman.  A man’s atypical behavior always had the passion sparked by a woman as his main motivation.  Find the woman and the puzzle would be solved.  A similar instinct tends to drive thinkers and decision makers in world affairs.  For them when something happens in the world, it is a case of “cherchez l’Ētat.”  Look for the state behind it and you will be well on your way to understanding the situation.”  In my view, Naím is incorrect.  The correct phrase should be “cherchez l’argent” – look for the money.  Nation-states are no longer sovereign – they are controlled by the wealthy elite, the corporatists.  If you want to explain something, to understand the real reason for something that happens in today’s world, look for the money – the economic reasons.  Perhaps “cherchez l’économiste” would work just as well.  (Actually, Naím is not too far off the mark.  Governments – nation-states – are a principal tool of the corporatists in implementing their programs and plans.  If you look for the state, you will be close to finding the reason behind an action.  But if you look for the money, you will probably come closer to finding the real reason.)

 

The fact is that the Democratic and Republican candidates for the presidency are committed to continuation of the same system of growth-based economics that is destroying the biosphere.  None is calling for a reduction in economic growth or industrial activity.  The election is irrelevant – it simply does not matter who wins, it will be “business as usual.”  The candidates act like school-age cheerleaders, urging that “change” and “hope” and “optimism” will solve America’s problems.  They do not offer a single action or plan or item that will solve any of the fundamental problems facing America and the world.  Every time I hear a politician promoting a position, I ask myself, “OK, but how will that stop the ongoing mass species extinction?  Or, OK, but how will that stop adding more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere?  Or, OK, but how will that stop the destruction of the Amazon Rain Forest?”  In the context of halting the ongoing biospheric destruction, their proposals, programs, platforms and vacuous promises are irrelevant at best, but mainly contributing to continued devastation.

 

That our current growth-based system cannot continue is obvious, but our political leaders continue to call for more growth, and to devise means to achieve it.  Growth in jobs.  Growth in new-housing starts.  Growth in the gross domestic product.  This policy is doomed to fail.  Why do the people listen to such rubbish?  In view of the absurd programs and policies our politicians preach to the electorate, they evidently consider the electorate to be utter fools.  In view of their record in messing up the world – the environment, the economy, and society in general – it is clear that the politicians running for office are completely unqualified to lead our nation.  Perhaps this is one reason why they rarely say “I am qualified,” but instead run negative ads that say “My opponent is unqualified.”  They can honestly assert the latter, but cannot in good conscience assert the former.

 

Both political parties and their candidates stand for exactly the same thing – perpetuation the same corrupt political / economic system that nurtures the wealthy elite at the expense of the middle class.  My step-daughter asked her mother (my wife) recently to name one fundamental difference between Obama and McCain, and she could not.  They stand for exactly the same basic things: the same growth-based economic system; the same debt-based money / compound interest system; the same private banking system; the same income-tax system; the same privately-owned central bank; the same private health-care system that funnels massive wealth to the medical establishment; the same free-trade system that has destroyed our manufacturing base and destroyed the quality of life for the middle class; the same urban sprawl; the same population growth that has destroyed our environment and living space; the same bailout of the financial sector using taxes from the middle class; the same open borders; the same mass immigration; the same corporatist society (where corporations have the same rights as natural persons).

 

Increased population growth is destroying our environment, living space, and quality of life for the middle class.  On television recently (Today, December 12, 2008) I heard someone say that the fact that the US population is increasing by three million people per year is a “saving grace” that will help bring an end to the current decline in housing prices.  The fact that the world and the country and all future generations are being destroyed by the current generation’s addiction to economic growth was not of the slightest concern to that person (whether he was an idiot or consummate evil incarnate).

 

One may be tempted to believe that America’s destruction of its manufacturing capacity, with the concomitant loss of millions of jobs and the creation of a massive trade deficit, is the result of stupidity of our leaders, who voted for “free trade,” or of the US wealthy elite, who allowed this to happen.  America lost its manufacturing base and high incomes for its middle class not because of the stupidity of its government leaders or its wealthy elite, but because of their own stupidity of the people in allowing this to happen.  The citizens’ leaders and wealthy elite deliberately destroyed America’s manufacturing capacity out of the motive for increased profits and the obscene riches of “finance.”  The Founding Fathers established a government of, by and for the people, but the current generation of citizens has thrown this away.  They have believed the litany of lies told by politicians in their “dog and pony” shows.  At some point, they will come to realize how badly they have been duped, and they will be very angry.

 

Petrogeologist Colin Campbell once remarked (in the documentary A Crude Awakening) that it is very unlikely that politicians will be able to solve any of the current pressing problems (such as Peak Oil).  He observed that it is much easier for a politician to react to a crisis while it is happening than to take steps to plan for it and prepare for it in advance.  This explains (in part) the government’s response to Hurricane Katrina, when it knew in advance that it was likely to occur someday and cause the damage that it did, and the complete lack of action taken in response to the first terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, years before the 9/11 attack.  Hoping that the government will solve today’s significant problems is very wishful thinking.

 

Miscellaneous Technical Reasons

 

The preceding paragraphs have discussed a number of reasons why US society is going to collapse, and soon.  The reasons discussed above were sorted into a number of categories that were defined either because they encompass an area about which much has been written (e.g., America’s discontent) or are very specific and germane (e.g., Peak Oil).  This section includes a final category of reasons which are of a more general nature.  They relate to a number of subjects, including history, ecology, and economics.

 

The Fates of Human Societies

 

Recently, Jared Diamond wrote two fascinating books on the rise and fall of human societies.  The first of these was Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies, published in 1997, and the second was Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, published in 2005.  These books analyze the rise and fall of human societies over the ages, and identify the major factors involved.  In Diamond’s view, the principal factors that are involved in the rise of human societies are environmental, not biological.  He asserts that advanced societies can emerge only in regions capable of enabling the accumulation of food surpluses. He supports his theses with detailed analysis of many examples.  Apart from an abundance of fertile land and rainfall, the major factor has been the local availability of wild plant and animal species that could easily be domesticated.

 

With respect to analyzing reasons why societies fail, Diamond focuses mainly on physical reasons, such as changes in the environment.  Diamond’s five major factors relating to environmental collapse include environmental damage, climate change, hostile neighbors, friendly trade partners and society’s responses to its environmental problems.  The major sources of environmental damage are: (historical reasons) deforestation and habitat destruction, soil problems, water problems, overhunting, overfishing, introduced alien species, human population growth, increased per-capita impact of people; (new reasons) human-caused climate change, buildup of toxic chemicals in the environment, energy shortages, and full human utilization of the Earth’s photosynthetic capacity.   

 

An earlier book in this subject area is Joseph Tainter’s The Collapse of Complex Societies (1988).  Tainter asserts that “civilizations are fragile, impermanent things.”  He asserts that societies evolve to greater and greater complexity, to the point where the marginal return from greater complexity declines.  At that point the rational response is to move to a lower level of complexity, which is often collapse (but not always total collapse, as evidenced in the case of recent empires, such as Britain, France, Spain, the Netherlands, the Soviet Union and others).  Diamond presents an interesting discussion of Tainter’s work in Collapse (pp. 420-421).  Tainter’s thesis is that the collapse stems from a failure “of group decision-making on the part of whole societies or other groups.”  Diamond discusses the reasons why so many societies make bad decisions, and presents four major categories of reasons: (1) failure to anticipate a problem before it arrives; (2) failure to perceive the problem after it arrives; (3) failure to try to solve the problem after they perceive it; and (4) trying to solve the problem but failing to solve it.  While it may seem difficult to comprehend how large organizations could fail in any of these areas, one has only to consider specific examples of the failure or near-failure of large firms, such as the near-collapse of IBM from competition from the microcomputer, a very successful version of which it itself introduced (in 1983); the recent collapse of Bear-Stearns; the collapse of Barings Bank; the collapse of Long-Term Capital Management; the bankruptcies of Orange County (California), Eastern Airlines, TransWorld Airlines, Pan American Airlines; the rise and fall of Germany’s Third Reich.

 

One has to wonder how large organizations, such as countries or large firms, can fail so spectacularly, when the cause of their failure is so obvious in retrospect.  Part of the problem is denial.  People simply don’t want to hear unpleasant things.  When I mention at a cocktail party that the world’s population will plummet as soon as oil depletes and that most people’s grandchildren will not exist, people are horrified and don’t want to discuss the topic any more.  They don’t care about the reasons.  They reject the reasons.  They reject the premise.  When Hillary Clinton remarked that she planned to stay in the presidential race until “the end,” because “things can happen” in a presidential race, such as Bobby Kennedy’s being assassinated on June 5, 1968, people were horrified that she would say such a thing.  But it is a perfectly rational observation to make.  The point is, people will simply ignore or deny or reject things that are unpleasant.  The US is in imminent danger of catastrophic collapse, and there is little than can be done about it.  People do not want to hear this, and they do not want to hear the arguments that support this position.

 

Arnold Toynbee (A Study of History, 1946) observed that civilizations fail when they fail to adequately respond to a new threat.

 

History

 

Jared Diamond’s work is a detailed analysis of history, in an attempt to identify the causal factors leading to rises and falls of human societies.  There are many works on history, but most of them are primarily descriptive, not analytical.  An example of an older work of history that is analytical in nature is Arnold Toynbee’s A Study of History (1946).  All history is relevant to the present work, but to be useful it must be subjected to critical analysis.  As has been repeated many times, those who do not learn from history are destined to repeat it.  Other works on history, most of them descriptive in nature, include the following:

 

  • The Outline of History, by H. G. Wells (1949-1971)
  • An Historian’s Approach to Religion, by Arnold Toynbee (1956)
  • The Decline of the West, by Oswald Spengler (1926)
  • The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, by Edward Gibbon (1788)
  • War and Civilization, selected by Albert Vann Fowler from Toynbee’s Study of History (1950)
  • Warfare in the Western World, by Robert Doughty et al. (1996)
  • A History of Warfare, by John Keegan (1993)
  • The Man Who Invented Hitler, by David Lewis (2003)
  • Arktos: The Polar Myth, by Joscelyn Godwin (1996)
  • The Occult Roots of Nazism, by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke (1985, 1992)
  • The Arabs, by David Lamb (1987)
  • A Peace to End All Peace, by David Fromkin (1989)
  • The Africans, by David Lamb (1983)
  • How the Irish Saved Civilization, by Thomas Cahill 1995)
  • Treason in America from Aaron Burr to Averell Harriman, second edition, by Anton Chaitkin (1984, 1985)
  • A Short History of Nearly Everything, by Bill Bryson (2003).

 

Carrying Capacity

 

In some instances, civilizations collapse when they run out of an essential resource, such as timber or water (e.g., from climate change or human-caused deforestation).  Animal populations and human populations alike usually breed to the limit of the food supply, and if the food supply collapses, then the society collapses as well.  A widely read book on this topic is William R. Catton’s Overshoot: The Ecological Basis of Revolutionary Change (1982).  Many populations go through the sequence of overshoot (growth beyond an area’s carrying capacity) and collapse (die-off).  Many authors have examined the issue of carrying capacity.  Two good books on this topic are Joel Cohen’s How Many People Can the Earth Support? (1995) and David Pimentel and Marcia Pimentel’s (editors) Food, Energy, and Society, revised edition (1996, 1979).

 

Political Ponerology

 

In 1998, Andrew Lobaczewski published the book, Political Ponerology: A Science on the Nature of Evil Adjusted for Political Purposes.  The thesis of this work is that political leaders are often able to accomplish incredible destruction because they are psychopathically ill.  Moreover, they may be assisted in their process of destruction by a mutual pathological illness on the part of their subjects.  The phenomenon the Lobaczewski describes appears to be a large-scale version of the shared psychotic disorder (described in the SDM-IV Psychological Manual), or folie à plusiers.

 

Resource Wars

 

When important resources become scarce, nations go to war over them.  The most recent example of this is America’s invasion of Iraq for oil.  Oil has been the root cause of most wars of the twentieth century, such as Japan’s entry into the Second World War.  Books on this subject include Michael T. Klare’s Resource Wars: The New Landscape of Global Conflict (2001) and Thomas Homer-Dixon’s Environment, Scarcity, and Violence (1999).

 

Catastrophe Theory, Chaos Theory, Dynamical Systems Theory

 

For the past several centuries, scientists have developed mathematical representations, or models, to describe the behavior of physical (real-world) systems.  Examples include Kepler’s laws of planetary motion, Newton’s laws of classical physics, Maxwell’s laws of electromagnetism, and Einstein’s theory of relativity.  For the past two centuries, much work has been done in the use of the theories of probability and statistics to describe and predict natural phenomena, including social and economic systems.  With the advent of the digital computer, computer simulation (“Monte Carlo” methods) has been used to solve problems that could not be solved “analytically” (i.e., with “closed-form” solutions (formulas)).

 

Early work in applying computer simulation to analyze dynamic systems was conducted by MIT Professor Jay Forrester.  Concurrently, much work was done (chaos theory, catastrophe theory) in analysis of deterministic dynamic systems that exhibit erratic behavior, such as abrupt changes in behavior or high sensitivity to initial conditions.

 

Professor Forrester developed simulation methodology for analyzing dynamic systems of various sizes, ranging from industrial systems to planetary-level systems.  What he observed in many simulations of dynamic systems is that they do not decline gracefully but tend to collapse catastrophically.  Examples of application of the system dynamics methodology are presented in The Limits to Growth: A Report for the Club of Rome’s Project on the Predicament of Mankind, second edition (1974) by Donella Meadows, Dennis Meadows, Jørgen Randers and William Behrens and Beyond the Limits: Confronting Global Collapse, Envisioning a Sustainable Future (1992).

 

Workers in the field of chaos theory (e.g., the “butterfly effect”) have also identified examples of natural systems that exhibit chaotic behavior, including weather systems and human societies.  Malcolm Gladwell’s The Tipping Point (2000) posits the hypothesis that many dynamic phenomena progress to a point where a small change in system input or environment causes a massive change in system behavior.  (Note that chaos theory is concerned with deterministic systems, not stochastic ones.  The popular notion of a “butterfly effect” in which a butterfly flapping its wings somewhere may eventually lead to a catastrophe somewhere else is a rather extreme example.  The “classic Lorenz system strange attractor” butterfly is an example of a nonlinear dynamic system that is highly sensitive to initial conditions.  It is a deterministic systems, and the “butterfly” refers to a graph of the function (e.g., Figure 2.6 of Courtney Brown’s Chaos and Catastrophe Theories, Sage University Papers, Series: Quantitative Applications in the Social Sciences, Series/Number 07-107, Sage Publications, 1995).  To date, the academic work in chaos and catastrophe theories has not been of much practical value.  Here follows a quote from the cited work by Brown: “More specifically, chaos and catastrophe theories per se address behavioral phenomena that are consequences of two general types of nonlinear dynamic behavior.  In the most elementary of terms, chaotic phenomena are a class of deterministic processes that seem to mimic random or stochastic dynamics.  Catastrophe phenomena, on the other hand, are a class of dynamic processes that exhibit a sudden and large scale change in at least one variable in correspondence with relatively small changes in other variables or, in some cases, parameters.”  Wikipedia contains good write-ups on chaos theory, catastrophe theory and ergodic theory, including references to early workers in the field, such as René Thom, Erik Christopher Zeeman, Jacques Hadamard, A. N. Kolmogorov, and Benoit Mandelbrot (fractal geometry).  The term “butterfly effect” was popularized from the title of a paper given by Edward Lorenz in 1972, entitled, “Predictability: Does the Flap of a Butterfly’s Wings in Brazil set off a Tornado in Texas?”)

 

While no mathematical models have been developed to help predict the timing of societal collapses, modern science and the scientific method provide a wealth of methodologies and techniques for analyzing system behavior and describing macroscopic and long-term behavior.  The interesting observation to be made is that dynamic systems occasionally tend to experience abrupt changes, such as exponential growth or catastrophic collapse, rather than forever evolving slowly and smoothly into different states.  Natural systems seem to evolve to overall stable equilibria (e.g., the ecology of a continent may be similar for eons, in the absence of catastrophic events such as earthquake, climate change, volcanic eruption, or asteroid collision).  It seems that human societies tend to “crash and burn” by war or other cataclysmic event, rather than morph peacefully into different forms.  History shows that civilizations do not last very long, and as the pace of things accelerates, their expected lifetime appears to be decreasing.  If human society is going to have any chance of long-term survival, it is going to have to become once again a small part of the planet’s natural ecosystem (as it was for millions of years).

 

The really incredible aspect of the current planetary crisis is that it is of utmost importance (mass extinction of species, global warming, ruining of the quality of life for all future generations, possible extinction of mankind), is well understood, and is completely within the physical power of humankind to resolve, but world leaders are doing absolutely nothing to do so.  It is absolutely amazing!  Mankind has the intelligence to comprehend the situation and do something about it, yet it does nothing to address it, and continues the activity (large human numbers and global industrialization) that make the situation even worse.  It is mind-boggling.  It makes you wonder who or what is in control of humanity, since it is hard to imagine an intelligent species deliberately committing mass suicide.

 

Economics

 

Perhaps the most significant book on the subject of economics is Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen’s The Entropy Law and the Economic Process (1971).  The fundamental premise of Professor Georgescu-Roegen’s work is that economics must take energy and entropy into account.  His ideas are summarized in Herman Daly’s Beyond Growth (1996) and (with John Cobb) For the Common Good, revised (1989, 1994).  Discussion of the importance of entropy to mankind’s activities is presented in Jeremy Rifkin’s Entropy: Into the Greenhouse World, revised edition (1980, 1989).

 

Money, Interest and Debt

 

The current planetary crisis, involving mass extinction and planetary warming, is obviously a life-and-death matter for mankind.  It hence seems very strange that, while the reason for the current planetary crisis is so obvious – large human numbers and high levels of industrial activity – nothing of any significance has been done to attempt to stop the system from doing further damage to the biosphere.  There must be some fundamental reason for this.  And there is.  The current system of economics manifest throughout the world (“growth-based economics”) is inextricably bound to economic and physical growth – it cannot be stable (since it is based on macro-level exponential growth), and it cannot shrink without collapsing catastrophically.  The reasons for this are a little complicated, and so I will start out by presenting some very simple examples to illustrate basic economic concepts related to money, interest and debt.  These simple examples are “limiting cases” that exaggerate certain features, but they serve well to indicate tendencies of real-world systems.

 

What is money?  Money is simply a convenient medium of exchange, to simplify the transfer of wealth assets.  In times past, items having some intrinsic value were used as money.  These included gold and silver coins – the gold and silver were of value in and of themselves (specie), for jewelry, utensils, and objets d’art.  The coins could be melted into any form, such as a necklace or an ingot or a cup or a figurine, and the value was the same.  Another example is cattle.  In primitive tribes, valuable items, such as wives, would be traded for a certain number of head of cattle.  Pretty seashells, beads, furs and semiprecious stones have also been used as money.

 

(I have defined money above simply as a medium of exchange.  This is a restricted definition.  A more rigorous and comprehensive definition is found on the Wikepedia entry for “Money.”  “Money is anything that is generally accepted as payment for goods and services and repayment of debts.  The main uses of money are as a medium of exchange, a unit of account, and a store of value.  Some authors explicitly require money to be a standard of deferred payment.”  “Money is generally considered to have the following characteristics, which are summed up in a rhyme found in older economics textbooks: ‘Money is a matter of functions four, a medium, a measure, a standard, a store.’  That is, money functions as a medium of exchange, a unit of account, a standard of deferred payment, and a store of value.”)

 

To simplify transactions even further, at some point paper bills were used in place of items (such as coins or ingots) having intrinsic value – large amounts of physical wealth may be transferred much more easily and safely by transferring a single paper document (such as a receipt for a gold deposit), than by transferring a large number of metal coins or cattle.  Initially, paper bills used for money represented real value – the bills could be exchanged for the gold or silver that they represented.

 

Wealthy individuals who owned much gold were invariably asked for loans.  If a fee is charged for the loan, and the amount of the fee is proportional to the value of the loan and the duration of the loan, then this fee is called “interest.”  In earlier times, the word for interest was “usury.”  Initially, usury was proscribed by Judaism, Christianity and Islam, although Judaism permitted charging of interest by Jews to nonJews.  The practical reason for this prohibition is that if the charging of interest is allowed, then eventually (in a closed society) all wealth becomes the property of those making the loans.  The organized religions did not come right out and say that this was the reason by usury was prohibited – it was couched in arcane theological reasons, such as “interest is placing a value on time, and time is the property of God.”  As trade began to flourish in the late Middle Ages, the demand for credit increased dramatically.  It became impractical to prevent the charging of interest, and so the definition of “usury” was changed by Judaism and Christianity to mean “excessive” interest.  The charging of interest is still proscribed by Islam (and ways to circumvent it are the basis of “Islamic banking”).

 

Organized religion is the handmaiden of government.  It was the government leaders who did not want the lenders (bankers) to become independently wealthy, and a power threat.  The church accommodated by declaring that usury was a sin.  The religious objection of Christianity and Islam to usury was one of the reasons why Jews and Masons were prominent moneylenders in the Middle Ages.  They had no religious scruples against charging of interest, and the state did not feel bound to enforce their contracts.  When capitalism flowered near the end of the Middle Ages, the church once again accommodated by declaring that charging of interest itself was not a sin, just charging of “excessive” interest (whatever that means!).

 

As I mentioned, the problem with allowing lenders to charge interest is that eventually, in a closed society, they will own everything and the borrowers will own nothing.  A couple of simple examples will illustrate this.  Consider the example of a nomadic tribe that owns cattle, which are the medium of exchange.  Suppose, in a very simple example, that the chief owns ten cows and a tribe member owns one cow.  Suppose that the tribe member asks the chief for a loan of ten cows, and agrees to repay eleven cows at the end of a year.  Assuming for the moment that no calves are born during the year, at the end of the year the tribe member repays the loan by returning the chief’s original ten cows and his own cow – the “interest” on the loan.  At this point, the chief – the lender – now owns all eleven cows and the tribe member – the borrower – owns no cows.

 

Obviously, the time required for the practice of charging interest to ultimately transfer all wealth to the lenders depends on how large the loans are, what the interest rate is, and how long their terms are.  If no loans are made, or if no interest is charged, nothing happens.

 

As a second example, simply replace the cattle with gold coins.  The results are exactly the same.

 

A way out of the dilemma of the lenders’ eventually owning everything is for the government (e.g., the tribal chief) to tax the lender, and return the interest to the borrower as wages for a job, or as a gift (“transfer payment”).  Another solution is to declare all debts (such as unpaid interest) to be null and void every few years, as in the practice of having a “Jubilee” year in Judaism (every 50th (or 49th) year, all debts to other Jews are forgiven and all Jewish slaves are freed).  A third solution is to restrict the making of loans and the charging of interest to the state, e.g., by having the state own the bank.  This last approach would not be appealing to private bankers.  Another remedy is bankruptcy (the annulment of debts by the government), or limited debt forgiveness (as has been done for some third-world countries).

 

As long as the money has intrinsic value, it is possible for the borrower to create some money and repay the loan with the created money.  For example, the herdsman may borrow ten cows from the chief, breed them for a year, end up with two additional head of cattle, repay the chief his ten-cow loan plus one-cow interest, and end up owning a cow of his own.  He put the loan to productive use.  Similarly, in the gold-coin example, if the borrower borrows ten gold coins, he may use the loan of ten gold coins to open and operate a gold mine for a year.  If after expenses he shows a profit of twelve gold coins, he repays the lender eleven (ten loan principal and one loan interest) and remains with a profit of one gold coin.  To increase their control over money, governments do not like to allow individuals the privilege of coining their own money, however, and so this option is not of practical value.  Most governments require use of a single, “sovereign” currency for payment of all debts, public and private.  When a government requires payment of taxes in a specific currency, that currency is called “fiat” money (since it is established by government decree, or “fiat”).  (Some refer to money that is not backed by a physical commodity as “fiat” money, and some use the term to refer to money that is not backed by anything of value at all, not even debt.  The key notion, however, is that the use of the currency is required by law as the means of paying taxes.)

 

Note that if new money is created, e.g., by breeding more cattle or mining more gold), then it is not inevitable that the lenders will eventually end up with all of the money.  All that is required to avoid the transfer of all wealth to the lenders is for the rate of creation of money (the “growth” of the economy) to be at least as large as the interest rate.  This by itself is not a long-term solution, however, since it is not possible for growth to continue indefinitely in any closed (finite) system, such as Earth.

 

Fractional-Reserve Banking

 

At the end of the Middle Ages, with the expansion of trade to the ends of the earth, much gold was obtained by Western society (e.g., the empires of Britain, France, Holland and Spain).  The money supply grew hand in hand with both the gold supply and the expansion of economic activity.  Over time, as the amount of gold and silver in storage grew, it became clear that very little of the gold and silver that was deposited with bankers was ever withdrawn.  Eventually, the bankers decided that they could make loans the total value of which exceeded the value of the metal deposits that they owned, and no one would be the wiser.  This practice was called “fractional-reserve banking.”  It worked fine unless all of the depositors demanded to withdraw their gold at the same time – a “run” on the bank – at which time the bank became insolvent (collapsed).  Because of the tremendous value of credit in commerce, and the desire of several world empires to expand their commerce rapidly, governments decided that it would be advantageous to allow the practice of fractional-reserve banking to continue.  To accomplish this, it agreed to back individual commercial banks in the event of a “run.”  Each government set up a “central bank” that stood as the ultimate guarantor of all deposits.  The only way that depositors would lose their money was if the government went bankrupt.  Fractional-reserve banking worked well, and became the basis for banking worldwide.

 

Under this practice, banks could receive a paper-money loan from the government equal to many times the value of the gold or silver on deposit.  The ratio of the loan to the deposit is called the reserve ratio.  A typical value of the reserve ratio is nine to one, i.e., a loan of nine paper dollars is granted in exchange for a deposit of one dollar’s worth of metallic gold (or other precious metal).  The central bank charges the private bank interest on this loan.  The interest rate is called the “discount rate” (or prime credit rate).  Obviously, the bank is not going to loan any money that it cannot lend out in turn at a higher rate of interest.  In practice, most borrowers do not actually want physical dollars, but simply a posting of the loaned amount to their checking account (coins were replaced by paper notes, and then paper notes by journal entries).  For this reason, only a small fraction of the amount of dollars loaned by a commercial bank from the central bank is actually printed.  The physical dollars transferred from the central bank to the commercial bank are just those few that people actually request, for convenience as circulating currency (or replacement of worn-out bills).  The principal role of the gold is simply as an indicator of the financial standing of the banker – it is understood and agreed that under fractional-reserve banking he cannot provide gold in exchange for all of the outstanding “gold-backed” notes.  Not even a central bank can do this: it may stand behind a “run” on a single bank, but it cannot provide gold to back all of the money for all banks (by the definition of “fractional reserve”).  In fact, the central banks of today now back paper money with more paper money, not gold.  Ultimately, the operational value of money depends on trust in the soundness of the government backing the money.

 

Under the scheme of fractional-reserve banking, the government can easily control the money supply by making changes to the discount rate.  It does this in such a way as to support an orderly (stable) financial system and promote a healthy (“growing”) economy  – the availability of sufficient credit to accommodate the demands of its wealthy merchants, but not so much as to cause a high level of inflation (through rising prices caused by the availability of too much easy credit).  It is important to realize that under the fractional-reserve banking system, although dollars may theoretically be redeemed for an equivalent dollar amount of gold, the total amount of money in existence (circulating currency plus demand deposits) is many times the dollar value of the gold “backing” it (by the size of the reserve ratio).  A few individuals would be able to cash in their dollars for an equivalent amount of gold at any time, but it would be physically impossible to cash in all of the dollars in existence at once for gold (since the face value of the dollars exceeds the dollar value of the gold by the reserve ratio).  Most of the actual value of money is backed up not by gold, but by promissory notes from lenders to banks.

 

In adopting a fractional-reserve-requirement money-and-banking system, a fundamental change has taken place – the total value of all of the money in existence (either in the form of physical currency in circulation or as deposits in bank accounts) is many times larger than the value of the gold backing it.  If the fractional reserve requirement is nine to one, for example, then the total value of the money is nine times the value of the physical gold backing it up.  Most of the value of the money is now represented in promissory notes from borrowers to banks.  The money is largely based on debt, not on metal assets (specie, items of intrinsic value).  For example, with a reserve ratio of nine to one, the “value” of the currency is represented by about ninety percent loans and ten percent gold.  The system works because most loans are sound.  Note that if a large proportion of loans go bad, then the amount of money in circulation decreases.  Note also that since most of the value of money is represented by debt and not by assets (gold), if the amount of debt is reduced, the amount of money is correspondingly reduced.  The primary function of the bank, in exchange for its ability to charge interest on government-issued money, is to assess the quality of loans and grant good ones.  Since the “value” backing the money is the worth of the loans (debt) on which the money is based, this is a very important function (which is not always performed, e.g., the savings and loan scandal of the 1980s and the current home-mortgage crisis).  In switching to fractional-reserve-requirement banking, it is no longer true that a bank makes loans using its depositors’ funds – the money lent is simply created out of thin air, based on the loan that the commercial bank receives from the central bank.  This is an amazing feature of our money system, and most people do not realize it.  Most people think that when you get a loan from a bank, the bank is using other people’s deposits to make the loan, which is generally false.  (It is absolutely false with fractional-reserve banking when the reserve requirement is less than 100 percent.  If the bank loans only deposits, then the “reserve requirement” is 100 percent.)  The reality in the present system is that money is created only when debt is created.

 

The fraction of gold value that the banks were required to keep was often about one-ninth of the outstanding loans, but it could be much lower, such as one-twentieth or one-thirtieth.  The practice of having currency (money) backed up by gold (or silver, or other precious metal) was continued well into the twentieth century.  The Bretton Woods Agreement near the end of World War II endorsed this approach to banking.  As the entire world started to industrialize in the latter part of the twentieth century, it became clear that there would be a requirement for much more money to fund the global economy than was backed by world government gold reserves (such as at Fort Knox at a nine-to-one reserve rate).  In response to this need, President Richard Nixon abandoned the practice of backing money with precious metals.  (When I was younger, every dollar bill contained the inscription “Silver Certificate.”  On at least one occasion I traded paper dollars for silver dollars at a bank – the banks indeed had silver in their vaults!  After 1971, the Silver Certificates were all withdrawn, and “Federal Reserve Notes” were issued in their place – and US dollars would no longer be redeemed for gold or silver.)  (Nixon didn’t simply dream up this change on his own.  To stabilize the world’s currencies (under a system of fixed exchange rates), the US had agreed to purchase gold at $35 per ounce, and it became increasingly difficult to do this as the global economy expanded (as global debt increased massively.)

 

When Nixon abandoned the Bretton Woods Agreement, banks were permitted to use promissory notes (IOUs) instead of gold as backing for money.  Previously, banks could lend up to nine times (say) of the value of the gold on deposit.  This meant that if a bank deposited one dollar’s worth of gold with the central bank, it would be granted a loan of nine paper dollars by the central bank.  Now, the banks could deposit one dollar of paper currency with the central bank, and receive a loan for nine paper dollars.  It could then loan out these nine paper dollars. At this point, the currency was not backed up by gold, silver, or any other standardized commodity of value – the paper currency was backed up by paper currency!  The present global monetary system is a complete house of cards, based entirely on debt (IOUs) from borrowers to banks.

 

It should be recognized that at this point, with the abandonment of the practice of backing the currency with gold (or other valuable, stable commodity), another fundamental change has taken place in the monetary system.  Previously, the money was “metal based” (“representational” money) – the money was backed up by an equivalent amount of gold for individual withdrawals, and by a fractional amount of gold overall.  The large demand for credit was accommodated by the fractional reserve requirement, but individual depositors were assured that the central bank would give them gold or silver – intrinsic value – for their dollars, whenever they wished.  Now, there was nothing backing up the currency, so that the government would not redeem paper dollars for anything.  This is known as “debt-based” money.  The money is backed by debt (from borrowers to banks), not by valuable commodities (such as gold).  Under a debt-based money system, money is not based on valuable physical commodities such as gold, real property, or physical infrastructure, other than whatever “collateral” may back the loan.

 

This point bears repeating.  The key point to understand here is that money is created directly as the result of a loan.  Banks do not use the money from one depositor to lend to another.  When someone borrows money from a bank, the money is created out of nothing.  When the loan is repaid (or the debt goes bad), the money disappears.  Banks loan money that they do not possess – the money for a loan is created the instant that the loan is made.  Today’s money is debt.  It represents the value of loans.  It does not represent a physical commodity, such as gold or silver.

 

This shift from metal-based money to debt-based money is a profound one in concept, but it does not make much difference in practice – in either case (under fractional-reserve-requirement banking) most (or all) of the value of money is debt, not precious metal.  Under either system, the government may influence the total amount of money in circulation (i.e., the total amount of credit) by changing the discount rate.  If people reduce their borrowing, then the money supply contracts.

 

Under either (fractional-reserve) system, with a high reserve ratio most of the value of money is based on debt.  If the debts go bad (e.g., as in the current home mortgage crisis) or are paid off, then the money supply contracts.  Note that this means less money for everyone.  In order for people to be able to repay their bank loans under the current system (money based totally on debt), then other outstanding loans must exist – otherwise, since money is now based on debt, if there is no debt there is no money.  For the system to keep operating, it is absolutely necessary that high levels of debt continue.  Money is now debt.  Under this system, if there is no debt, there is no money.

 

Since, when creating a loan the bank creates only the principal and not the interest, in order for a lender to be able to repay the interest associated with the loan, additional loans must be created.  In the long run, for the interest to be repaid, loans must be created in value equal to the amount of the interest charged, and never repaid.  This is why a debt-based system of money, with interest, has to continue to grow.  All interest charged becomes debt that can never be repaid.  The “impossible contract” becomes possible only if the system grows, and additional money (debt) is created that is never repaid.  This unpaid interest becomes the national debt.  In a debt-based system of money, the national debt continues to grow forever, and can never be repaid.

 

Debt-Based Money Plus Interest Equals Economic Growth

 

The central bank has to charge a positive interest rate on its loans, to keep the money supply stable.  Otherwise, the commercial banks could borrow as much money as they pleased, in which case massive inflation could occur.  Since banks (the central bank and commercial banks) charge interest on their loans, each year, the system must grow by the amount of interest charged.  Otherwise, all of the loaned money would eventually return to the banks, and there would be no money available to pay interest.  The system continues to grow at the interest rate, or it collapses.  And this feature has profound implications for the future of the planet.  It bears repeating – the world economic system, based on money as debt, must continue to grow, or else it will collapse.  The fact that the total amount of debt must keep increasing, absurd as this may be, is not the disturbing aspect of this.  The disturbing consequence is that the economy must continue to grow (lenders must work to repay not only the loan, but also the interest on it).  The gross domestic product must continue to “keep ahead” of the ever-increasing debt (money supply).  The disastrous consequence of this is that the economy must continue to grow, or it will collapse.  This means that the level of industrial activity must continue to grow.  The consequence of this is that the destruction of the planet’s biosphere that is caused by industrial activity must continue to increase, as long as this system (debt-based money, interest) continues.  And all of the world’s wealthy elite are working very hard to make sure that it continues.

 

Growth-Based Economics Destroys the Planet’s Environment

 

In simple terms, the growth of an economy in a year equals the amount of interest charged by banks.  Each year, the global economy grows by this amount.  This is an exponential growth process.  The only way that it can continue is for the economy to continue to grow.  But an exponential process cannot continue indefinitely in a finite system – eventually (and very quickly) it will terminate.  Economic growth consumes natural resources, and so the limiting factor for any economic system is the biosphere.  (Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen has more to say about this, from the viewpoint of energy and entropy, but I will not complicate the discussion any further.)   Since economic growth is destructive of nature, the collapse of the economic system occurs with the collapse of the natural system (in mathematics, an exponential process may continue indefinitely (in an “open” system)).  Note that even if central banks charge “simple” interest on their loans to the private banks, the system grows exponentially (since, each year, the economy grows, and the following year’s money / debt is roughly proportional to the size of the economy).

 

In summary, the global system of debt-based money (combined with interest) is destroying the biosphere, at an exponential rate.  This process is totally independent of the enslavement of poor individuals and countries by compound-interest debt – it would happen even if no poor individuals and countries had any debt whatsoever.  All that is required is for there to be some debt-based money – some level of economic activity.  This activity could be conducted solely by responsible corporations that repay all loans on time and never become slaves to compound interest (to be discussed in detail later).  The system of growth-based economics (debt-based money, interest) is guaranteed to destroy the biosphere.  The planet is in the grip of a pernicious disease, a malignant cancer that is destroying it.  As long as the current system of growth-based economics continues, the destruction of nature will continue.

 

Private Banking

 

A key feature of the US and world banking system is that the world’s governments allow private banks to exist.  It is the private bank that makes the loans and creates money (the government just issues the small amount of physical cash (paper bills or coins) that is needed).  This has the effect of transferring all of the interest on the debt to the private bankers (above the discount rate, which is paid on loans made by the private bank from the central bank).  Some people object strongly to this, arguing that the government should own the banks, make bank loans, charge the interest, and retain it as wealth of the people.  The reason why this is not done is that governments are controlled by the wealthy elite, and they want to collect the interest – most of the interest is from the people, and the wealthy do not want it going back to the people.  The entity that controls the money is in control of society.  Banker Mayer Anselm Rothschild once observed, “Permit me to issue and control the money of a nation, and I care not who makes its laws.”

 

Much as been written on the subjects of money, interest and banking.  Internet resources include Wikipedia’s article, “Fractional-reserve Banking” and the many links cited in that article under “See also.”  An excellent video on debt money is Paul Grignon’s “Money as Debt,” posted on YouTube or at Google Video, http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-9050474362583451279 .  See also http://one-simple-idea.com/M3MoneySupply.htm .  An excellent recent book on the subject is Ellen Hodgson Brown’s The Web of Debt (2007, 2008).  Excerpts from Brown’s book are presented in the Appendices.

 

Few people realize that exponential-growth processes cannot continue for very long.  These processes are explosive (recall the doubling of debt under compound interest).  Many articles have been written on the phenomenon (the “paradox”) of compound interest (see the Internet for examples).  It is said that even Albert Einstein was impressed by the phenomenon of compound interest.

 

The Nature of Debt in Today’s World

 

Some people do not worry much about the debt associated with a debt-based fractional-reserve currency and banking system.  They say, for example, that as long as GDP increases faster than debt, there is no problem.  The problem is that these people are in favor of a high and increasing level of industrial activity, and have little or no concern for the damaging effect that this system has on the planet’s biosphere.  In addition to the incentive for the current currency-and-banking system to promote economic growth, there is another insidious feature of the system.  This is based on the compounding of interest, which causes unpaid debts to grow to extreme, unmanageable levels.  This feature is used to make economic slaves out of individuals and countries.  How it works is as follows.

 

Simple interest is interest that is calculated on the basis of the original borrowed amount – the “principal.”  An alternative system of interest is to add the accumulated interest (if any) to the principal, and calculate the interest owed on the basis of the principal plus accumulated interest.  The interest charged on the accumulated interest may be calculated periodically or continuously.  If the interest owed is always paid in full as the debt is retired, then the two systems produce (essentially) the same results.  Over time, if a loan is not repaid, the amount of simple interest increases linearly – the interest is simply the product of the principal amount times the time that the money is owed.  With compound interest, however, if a loan is not repaid, the size of the loan increases exponentially.

 

Debt “Pushers”; Predatory Lenders

 

Over the past half-century, there has been a concerted effort to induce people and countries to assume debt.  In the US, consumers are deluged with offers from banks and moneylenders (such as credit-card companies) to incur debt (by the way, a “bank” is a moneylender who accepts deposits – if you simply loan money, you are not a “bank”).  This debt is at very high interest rates, such as 20 percent (a typical credit-card rate), and the interest is compounded.  Unless the debt is paid off every month, the amount owed (original principal plus compounded interest) quickly explodes, to the point where the amount owed is vastly larger than the amount of the original loan.  This practice has been ongoing in the US for half a century now, and the amount of debt owed by American consumers is now astronomical.  (The fact is that many middle-class people cannot and do not repay their credit-card debt, and are destined to become slaves to compound-interest debt.)  This development has occurred with the full knowledge and consent of the US government.  In fact, recently (2005) the bankruptcy law was changed to make it much more difficult for individuals to get out from massive debt – the government has become the debt collection agency for the wealthy elite lenders (attachments, liens, garnishments).  No money down.  No credit check.  Bad credit.  No credit.  The lenders don’t care if you default – they are delighted if you default – because they know that once you sign on the dotted line, the full force of the government will bear down on you until the end of your days, prosecuting you to collect their usurious interest charges and fees.

 

In addition to credit cards, other forms of consumer debt are consumer loans and home mortgages.  These other forms of debt are often imposed on the public by powerful inducements, including no-money-down, no payment for a while, and gifts.  A well known example of debt inducement is in the area of home mortgages.  In a scheme to increase the amount of debt (to stimulate the economy), the government encouraged the sale of houses with “no-money-down” mortgages and “creative financing,” such as adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) that start out at interest rates that are very low (or zero) and then increase.  This caused a massive increase in home building, as many financially unqualified people purchased homes and many people purchased second homes.  (The scheme eventually had to fail, since most ARMs were given to people who did not qualify for standard (fixed-interest-rate) loans.  The only way they could possibly repay was in a market of ever-increasing housing prices.  As soon as housing prices failed to increase and the interest payments started (e.g., after five years), the borrowers could not pay.)  Eventually, the scheme collapsed, and what we are seeing now is the current mortgage crisis.  The government was completely derelict in its responsibility to monitor and regulate financial markets.  The only people who got hurt in this scheme were the individual borrowers, since the government has now pledged to bail out financial institutions that face failure from the mortgage problem – using tax money from the middle class!

 

Credit cards and no-down-payment mortgages are not the only means that the government endorses to induce people to borrow.  When I was young, the discount rate was very low, the currency stable, and interest rates for loans were very low (this was in the 1940s and 1950s, before Nixon abandoned the Bretton Woods Agreement and money was asset-based (“representative” money)).  The term inflation refers to the loss in the purchasing power (“real value”) of money over time.  It is caused mainly by the government’s allowing the money supply to grow faster than the economy (i.e., than the gross domestic product).  If the rate of inflation is low, there is no incentive for an individual to invest his money.  As an extreme example, if the money is backed 100 percent by gold, then the individual does not need to invest at all, if he is satisfied with his current level of wealth.  But if inflation is high, then the value of money is decreasing quickly, and the individual must either spend it or invest it, because it will be worth much less in a short time.  When I was young, people were advised to save.  Banks paid little interest on savings (e.g., three percent), but it was still prudent to save because over a long time the money lost very little value and the money was safe in the bank.  This did not please the wealthy owners of America, who want more economic activity (which generates more wealth for them), and they pressed for a higher level of inflation.  Under those conditions, there is strong pressure to invest, i.e., to make loans.  Otherwise, because of inflation, one’s savings will significantly decrease in real value over time.  This generates more wealth for the wealthy from two sources: (1) the interest on the loans; and (2) increased economic activity (from the investment). 

 

Today, the individual is under a constant barrage of exhortations to invest (i.e., loan) his money – “don’t’ leave your money in the bank earning one percent interest – inflation will make it worthless.”  This is what the government wants, in order to transfer wealth from the middle class to the wealthy elite (from the interest on loans and from the economic activity that the loan generates).  The government often states that if consumers will just keep spending – and borrowing – and investing in “growth” – then everything will be all right.  Under debt-based money, money exists and the economy grows only if there is debt.  The wealthy elite and the government want people to borrow, to keep the economy growing (even if the people have all of the consumer goods that they need).  They deliberately imposed a certain level of inflation (which makes money worth less over time) to motivate people to invest (in order to maintain the value of their wealth).

 

There are two problems with this scheme.  First, as discussed, as the economy grows, the biosphere is destroyed.  The second problem with massive debt is that the borrower becomes totally under the control of the lender.  (This is a social problem, not an environmental one.)  Eventually, with compound interest, the point is reached where the borrower cannot possibly repay the debt.  At that point, the lender is in complete control.  He can either destroy the individual financially, or reduce the debt to a point where the borrower is just able to make the payments.  At this point, the borrower is an economic slave to the lender for the rest of his life.  I have seen this process at work with members of my own family.  When I was young, credit card use was very limited.  It is now done on a massive scale.  The new generation of young people is deep in debt, and will never recover as long as the present system continues.  This one aspect of American life – the loss of freedom from debt, enslavement by debt – is perhaps the most significant factor contributing to decline of quality of life.  You are not free if you are deep in debt.  The practice of debt inducement (money as debt, compound interest, credit-card campaigns, no-money-down homes, consumer installment loans, “payday” loans, selling of mortgages and sales agreements / debt to third parties, securitization of debt, public bailouts of failed financial firms (e.g., the collapse of S&Ls, LTCM, Bear Stearns)) has been supported and promoted by US government policies, and the US government is the principal debt-collection enforcer.  The US government has done this to serve the rich at the expense of the poor.  While the wealthy elite may be the root source of the problem, the US government has served as a pimp in promoting massive debt, and as a henchman in providing debt-collection services.  This fact contributes much to the alienation of the US middle class from the US government.

 

Third-World Debt

 

This same scheme has been used over the past half century against developing countries.  A popular mass-market book on this subject is John Perkins’ Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.  What the developed world did was to induce third-world countries to accept loans.  In most cases, these loans were never repaid, often because the proceeds were simply stolen by corrupt political leaders who had no intention of ever repaying them, leaving them for the next generation’s poor to continue paying.  Over time, with compound interest, the debt rose to astronomical levels.  Here follows an excerpt from the article “The Terrorism of Debt” by Wanda Fish at http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article4368.htm .

 

“Over the past fifty years, the IMF and the World Bank have forced economic ‘development’ that benefits the wealthy lenders and multinational corporations in the industrialized north and enslaves the world's poor majority in developing and third-world countries. These international loan sharks have hijacked the economies of more than 60 countries. Loans, international assistance, and debt relief are given only when countries agree to conditions set by the Bank and Fund. Free trade, market liberalization, and privatization of essential resources and services are demanded if ‘financial stability’ is to be achieved. While crippling interest payments force cuts in health care, education and other social services for millions of people around the globe; the banks and corporations that ‘rescued’ those countries report record profits. Humanitarian crises, like wars, have become lucrative business for those who have money to lend.

 

“Ten years ago, economist J. W. Smith warned, ‘The size of the debt trap can be controlled to claim all surplus production of a society, but if allowed to continue to grow the magic of compound interest dictates it is unsustainable. The third world debt has been compounding at over 20 percent per year between 1973 and 1993, from $100 billion to $1.5 trillion [only $400 billion of the $1.5 trillion was actually borrowed money. The rest was runaway compound interest]. If Third World debt continues to compound at 20 percent per year, the $117 trillion debt will be reached in eighteen years and the $13.78 quadrillion debt in thirty-four years.’

 

“More shocking than the magnitude of the figures (how does one fathom a quadrillion dollars?) is the chilling fact that the debt trap robs all the surplus production of an entire society. Debt does much more than forcing a country to work for nothing. This form of terrorism punishes the children, abandons the sick, and enslaves the adults.

 

“Every hour, one Filipino child dies because of debt-related poverty. Millions of children die every year in the Third World because they are too poor to buy food or medicines. Their families work extraordinary hours to earn less than $2 a day. Filthy slums with inhumane living conditions are prolific in most countries in the world, and are no longer exclusive to the third world.

 

“An estimated 100 million children live and work on the streets in the developing world, including 40 million in Latin America. Although many of these street children have some family links, they spend most of their lives on the streets begging, selling trinkets, shining shoes or washing cars to supplement their families' income. These children rarely go beyond a fourth-grade education. The 25 million children without families live in the streets with other street children. They sleep in abandoned buildings, under bridges, in doorways, or in public parks.

 

“These young victims of debt resort to petty theft and prostitution to survive. Many are addicted to inhalants which offer them an escape from reality and hunger pains -- in exchange for a host of physical and psychological problems, including hallucinations, pulmonary edema, kidney failure, and irreversible brain damage. These children are abused, even murdered, by the people who are supposed to protect them.”

 

The primary purpose of the world’s financial institutions, including banks, the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank, is to create debt – debt so massive that the borrowers cannot possibly pay it off.  This is done through fractional-reserve banking and the scheme of compound interest.  The loans are created out of thin air by the fractional-reserve system, and the level of this debt quickly becomes impossibly high due to compound interest at high interest rates.  The third-world countries are then under the total control of the banks and international financial institutions.  At some point, the debt becomes so massive that the country cannot possibly pay it back. At that point, the international community forgives some portion of the debt – just enough so that the country can still pay something and remain under the total control of the lenders.  The IMF, World Bank, WTO and others impose draconian “fiscal stabilization” requirements on the country, that generate massive wealth for the international lenders in the developed countries and cause massive misery for the country’s poor.  These measures ensure that the wicked, sinister, evil, planet-destroying system will continue.  The current system of growth-based economics is destroying the biosphere and enslaving billions of people in grinding poverty and misery.

 

A key concept in the money-as-debt system is that eventually, some debt must be cancelled – the debt cannot keep growing forever.  It can grow for a while, if the economy continues to grow, but nothing can keep growing forever.  (Economist Kenneth Boulding once observed, “Anyone who believes exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist.”)  The debt may be cancelled by debt forgiveness or bankruptcy.  Debt forgiveness, of course, is at the option of the lender.  Once debt reaches unmanageable levels, the lender does not have to forgive it all – he may forgive just enough to keep the borrower “alive,” yet forever under his control.  This is how third-world countries are kept in thrall forever.  Their neo-colonial masters induce them to take on debt, charge compound interest until the debt is unsupportable, and forgive just enough debt to keep the country “alive.”  A rather tragic aspect of the system is that the third-world debt is made by the counties’ venal leaders, and the compound interest must be paid (via taxes) by its poor citizens.  The leaders make the debt that enslaves their people, and the people pay the price – economically and through the destroyed environment that “development” projects cause – forever, or until this vile system is destroyed.

 

The National Debt

 

The debt underlying (backing) the money supply is comprised of outstanding commercial loans and US government debt (government bonds).  As commercial loans are made and repaid, that portion of the money supply is created and disappears.  The government portion of the debt cannot be repaid, however, since the rest of the money supply would disappear.  (In particular, new debt is required to create money for lenders to use for interest payments on loans.)  The money supply – the debt – just keeps on growing, as interest is paid on loans.  When the government periodically declares that the national budget is “balanced,” is means that there is sufficient tax revenue to pay the interest on the debt, not that the debt has been repaid.

 

It is often said that the size of the US national debt doesn’t matter, since we “owe it to ourselves.”  While this may have been true at one time, it is absolutely not true at the present time.  Much of the national debt of the US is now held by foreign entities, such as Communist China.  As long as the lender-borrower relationship exists, the borrower is under the control of the lender.  If the borrower is the US government and the lender is the US population – and the US government serves the people – this is not a grave concern (it funnels interest to the moneylenders, but the government can always print more (taxation by inflation), but in doing so it creates more debt (bonds to back the printed money)).  When the lender is a foreign government, however, the situation is not good.  If a father lends to a child and the debt becomes too large, the father may forgive the debt – it’s all “in the family.”  In ancient Israel, wealthy Jews forgave all debts every 49 or 50 years (the “Jubilee” year), and the system started from scratch all over again.  But in today’s world, few individuals or organizations are likely to cancel debts to countries.  The only time that a country’s debt is forgiven is if the country is in such bad shape or the debt is so large that repayment is not possible.  International banks will cancel some debt for countries that become overwhelmed with debt, but not to the extent that they lose control of the country (and only in exchange for agreements for the country to comply with conditions that favor the banks and globalization).

 

Much of today’s US national debt is held by entities outside the US – it is external debt.  (It is not at all like the debt that the US incurred via War Bonds in the Second World War – the government’s debt was in fact held by its own citizens, and it was correct to characterize the debt as being owed to ourselves.)  This suits the corporate controllers of the US (and the world) just fine.  An America with massive national debt owed to others is easy to control – just as easy as any other third-world country in massive debt.  In incurring debt with foreign entities, the United States is playing with fire.  It is like a person who plays with heroin.  He may be able to “kick the habit” a few times, and he will lie to himself that he can stop at any time, but very soon, he is a hopeless drug addict.  For some time now, the US has, through massive immigration, been transforming itself into a third-world country.  Now that it has incurred massive foreign debt, that transformation is complete.  The US is now a slave to the corporatist global empire, along with all the other third-world nations.  Who gains?  The global corporatists.  Who loses?  The US middle class.  The US wealthy elite made the debt (since they control the government), and the US middle class will pay it (through their taxes).  Exactly as is the case for any debt-burdened third-world country.

 

America has joined the ranks of the third-world debtor nations.  Much of its debt is now held by foreign entities, such as Communist China and the Arab states.  The US population has now joined the ranks of the third-world poor, sending massive amounts of money (interest on the debt) to the corporate controllers of the world.  Similarly, it is now trying to salvage its desperate financial situation by selling its assets, such as its corporations, its highway infrastructure and its ports – even its land!  Through mass immigration and open borders, America imported third-world culture on a massive scale, and it has now become a debtor nation.  How ironic.  How predictable.  How fitting.

 

In China, the government makes many loans to business or industry that are never repaid.  These loans become a permanent debt.  These loans represent an investment in social development, and are in part responsible for the tremendous economic gains that China has realized in recent years.  These permanent loans are similar to our national debt, with one very big difference – our national debt accumulates interest – compound interest that is growing at an exponential rate.  Moreover, it is owed by the Chinese to the Chinese.  The Chinese permanent debt is helping that country grow; whereas our national debt is helping to destroy us.  Permanent debt can be useful, but only if it does not accrue interest.

 

(The US resembles a third-world nation not just in owing massive debt to other nations, but also with respect to manufacturing.  Having moved much of its basic manufacturing capacity overseas, the United States is now in the position of a third-world nation, a colony, sending its raw materials overseas to other countries to use in making high-value-added products.  For example, much of the cotton grown in North Carolina is now exported to China.  Previously, North Carolina textile mills converted this cotton to thread and yarn, made textiles, and converted the textiles to end products.  The entire vertical production line remained in the United States, employing US workers and keeping our nation self-sufficient.)

 

Interest-Based Debt Cannot Continue Forever; Economic Collapse Serves the Wealthy Well

 

Banks or firms that hold credit-card debt from individuals will never willingly cancel or reduce the debt.  The only way that an individual is able to get out from overwhelming credit-card debt is to declare personal bankruptcy, and the US government determines the conditions under which this may be done (usually, the loss of most of his assets, except for his tools and a modest home).

 

It is interesting to observe the debt cancellation associated with the recent Bear Stearns collapse.  The US government was willing to put up 200 billion dollars to prevent the failure of Bear Stearns, but it was not willing to save a single individual mortgage holder.  Under the deal, the debt of not a single home mortgage holder was forgiven.  All that the government was willing to spend for the borrowers was a few million dollars on “debt counseling” – paid for, of course, by taxes from the middle class.  The US government wants the home mortgages to remain in economic bondage, so the home mortgage holder’s debt continues.  On the other hand, the US government was willing to spend 200 billion dollars of taxpayer money to indemnify Bear Stearns.  In this case the US government is transferring up to 200 billion dollars of taxpayer money (most of it from the middle class) to the wealthy elite. If the government was going to bail out anyone using taxpayer money, why not transfer some of the taxpayer money to the taxpayers?  The US government caused the mortgage crisis, by encouraging the purchase of homes for no money down.  When this ridiculous scheme collapsed, it then left the homeowners deep in debt and indemnified the wealthy banks for their losses.

 

Under the system of debt-based money with interest, the amount of debt expands exponentially until some portion of it is cancelled (since exponential growth cannot continue forever).  As we see from the past several decades, the government does its best to make sure that the debt is cancelled only for the rich, not for the poor.  It uses taxpayer money to indemnify Bear Stearns, and it lets the home mortgage holder go bankrupt and lose everything (including his house).  It allows the rich man who fails, to protect his personal assets by incorporation.  It bails out the international banks and lets the poor people in third-world countries continue to pay compound interest endlessly.  It is a perverse, pernicious, cruel, rotten system that cannot endure.

 

A system of debt-based money with interest cannot continue indefinitely, since growth cannot continue indefinitely in a closed system, and since the lenders eventually own everything.  Eventually, some of the debt must be eliminated, either by debt forgiveness (e.g., bankruptcies, write-offs) or financial contractions (recessions, depressions, collapse of financial “bubbles”).  (We are referring here to systems of private banking; if only the government makes loans and charges interest, the interest may be respent on a continuing basis, and never accumulates.)  The only real choice is between a series of small collapses (economic recessions, contractions) or less-frequent large ones, such as the Great Depression of the 1930s.  Since the Great Depression, the policy of the government has been to avoid major collapses through bailouts of large banks and corporations.  This simply delays the inevitable, and ensures that the next big collapse will be really big.

 

Every year, an amount of money equal to the interest on debt is transferred from borrowers to lenders.  Corporate borrowers have the expertise and wherewithal to pay off their debt.  Or, if they “miscalculate,” they simply dissolve the corporation.  Donald Trump once bragged that he had never declared personal bankruptcy.  Some of his business ventures went bankrupt, but he was unaffected.  Poor people do not have this option.  Poor individuals cannot manage debt and, under compound interest, the debt soon becomes unmanageable.  Even small middle-class businesses do not have the option of getting out from under unmanageable debt by dissolving a corporation, since most loans to small businesses must be underwritten by the personal guarantee of the business owners.  The compound-interest scheme under which the US and global economy is based ensures that the poorer individuals and countries will soon be slaves to debt (many already are).  The system is set up to transfer more and more wealth from the poor borrower to the rich lender every year.  “And from him who has nothing, even that shall be taken away.”

 

The “powers that be” know that the system (debt-based money, compound interest, free-market economy) will collapse from time to time, and they are ready to make the most of it when this happens.  Following the stock-market crash of 1929, most of the small farmers, who had mortgages on their farms, went bankrupt.  The wealthy elite – the bankers – took possession of the farms.  This was essentially the end of the era of the small family-owned farm in America.

 

Economic Growth Is Destroying Society and the Planet’s Environment

 

A free-market, private-enterprise, capitalist system based on debt-based money and interest is an exceptional growth-based economic system.  It constitutes a superb engine for creation of physical wealth.  It includes an incredible incentive for entrepreneurs, by allowing individuals to accumulate vast private wealth very quickly.  This system affords tremendous opportunities for anyone with talent to achieve great material success, even starting from scratch.  Since commercial banks are empowered to create money out of thin air, even people born with no assets have access to unlimited amounts of money.  All they need to become very wealthy is creative talent.  It is not like the situation that existed a half-century or more ago, where it usually took a couple of generations for a family to acquire great wealth (e.g., Howard Hughes and the founder of FedEx both started off with access to their father’s money).  Now, anyone with talent can become fabulously wealthy in his own lifetime.  A basic education is provided free of charge to all, and class restrictions are very low.  This is the most incredible time in human history, from the point of view of affording opportunity to so many people to accomplish their dreams, without the restriction that being born poor once imposed.

 

As private entrepreneurs accumulate wealth, the overall economy grows at a very rapid rate – exponential growth (because of interest).  The system is designed for maximal growth, since anyone with a good business idea has immediate access to money (not only from commercial-bank loans, but from venture capitalists as well).  The amount of capital available is not constrained by the amount of existing wealth, such as the gold reserves.  Under fractional-reserve banking, the amount of money available for loans is ten times the amount on reserve – and the reserve is nothing but paper and electronic records (debt-based money)!  It is a tragic shame, however, that this tremendous power for building cannot be harnessed for good, rather than allowed to run amok and destroy a planet.  Man was born to build (and to create and discover and conquer), and this vehicle allows him to build with exceeding speed on a colossal scale – as long as an energy supply is available, and until his efforts destroy the planet’s environment.

 

In the long run, there is nothing good about an economic system based on debt-based money and interest.  They are exponential processes which are not sustainable.  Exponential processes cannot continue indefinitely in a finite system, such as Earth.  The fact that the money supply or the debt grows, or the value of the money decreases (inflation), is not the point here.  The point is that this system promotes ever-increasing economic activity.  Since economic activity always consumes natural resources, it destroys the biosphere at an exponential (geometric) rate.  From a physical viewpoint, the system continues to grow until it is destroyed or it destroys the biosphere.  From a social perspective, since the system cannot continue to grow indefinitely, all of the wealth will eventually be transferred from the borrowers to the lenders.  Under this system, periodic collapses, which ruin mainly small borrowers, must occur from time to time.  Growth-based economics spurs population growth (since the system needs people both as producers and consumers).

 

Why the US Will Collapse Quickly

 

[Author’s note:  Originally, it was intended that this book be “full size” – of several hundred pages.  Due to the press of time, I am not able to finish it as originally planned, and have “wrapped it up” as an essay.  The remaining sections simply “outline” key points of the intended sections, with elaboration of a few items (such as Jeffrey Sachs’ proposal to address the current crisis).]

 

The US will collapse very quickly.  It will collapse as soon as global oil production starts to decline, at which time global industrialization will start to crumble and the quality of life will start to plummet.  It is held together today not by culture, but by oil.  When the oil disappears, the US will collapse.  It has lost the culture of its founding fathers, the government has turned against the people, and the nation is highly fragmented.

 

Below follows a list of reasons why the collapse of the US will occur quickly.

 

  1. Growth cannot continue indefinitely in any closed system (such as Earth’s biosphere).  Exponential (explosive) growth cannot continue for very long.  Explosions do not last very long.  Massive population growth, growth-based economics, global industrialization, planetary-scale pollution and mass species extinctions cannot continue indefinitely.
  2. History shows that societies tend to grow, mature, and then collapse, rather than undergoing endless morphing.  See Collapse by Jared Diamond; Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph Tainter; A Study of History by Arnold Toynbee.  War and peace never last for very long.  Neither one can last for long.  Each is essential for the other, and for the long-term survival of mankind.  (As Emmanuel Goldstein observed, “War is peace.”)
  3. Biological systems tend to overshoot and collapse: Catton’s Overshoot.
  4. The rate of change in today’s world is very fast (high-tech, efficient, fast, unstable – and explosive growth).  It is amazing how fast things can change: in 1912, just two years before the world was consumed in the First Great War, people were observing that the world had had 100 years of peace (since Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo), and that human civilization appeared to have put large wars behind it.  Recently, the price of gasoline in the US rose by ten cents per gallon each month, to about $4.00 per gallon recently.  During this period, the price of oil was rising by about ten dollars a month, reaching $147 per barrel recently – and then collapsing to half that, at which time the price of gasoline dropped to about $1.60.  These are indicators that Hubbert’s Peak is now passing – when the global production limit is reached the price skyrockets; demand then drops off, there is surplus production (oil temporarily becomes a “slack” resource), and the price plummets.  (Although the price of oil will go up some more, it will not go up indefinitely.  Eventually, the global economy will start to contract, as it runs out of its primary source of energy, and the price will stabilize (but remain high) relative to other commodities.  Economies such as the US will stop burning oil in massive amounts (e.g., in private automobiles), and use the remaining amount in other ways.  The wide fluctuations (instability) that we are now seeing in the stock market (and price of oil) are a strong indicator that the Peak is passing.)
  5. The world economic system is based on perpetual growth (growth-based economics).  The currency and banking system is based on debt-based money and compound interest.  This system must grow exponentially or collapse (or limp along at a maximal possible rate with minimal debt forgiveness as it enslaves the poor).  No system based on exponential growth can continue for long.  The system will continue to grow (with periodic recessions / depressions) until the oil is gone or the biosphere is destroyed, and then collapse.
  6. Dynamic systems theory, chaos theory, catastrophe theory (tipping point).  Natural systems may maintain an equilibrium for a long time.  Civilizations tend to collapse catastrophically, not gracefully decline or morph.  On an evolutionary time-scale, human civilizations do not last very long.  For human society to endure, it must be a small and unobtrusive part of a much larger natural system.  Once human society reached the point where its large numbers and industrial activity caused macroscopic changes in the biosphere (e.g., mass species extinction), it was doomed.
  7. Confrontation of Christianity (much materialistic wealth, highly dependent on oil) and Islam (little materialistic wealth, owners of oil).  Each is champing at the bit for world domination.
  8. Resource wars.  Global war will occur after passage of Peak Oil.  The world can’t increase the supply of oil, and dramatically rising prices have produced no comparable substitutes.  The only option, therefore, is to reduce demand, which implies annihilation or decimation of populations.  Peak Oil is occurring now.  Collapse may occur any time after passage of the Peak, not when all oil is gone, and not a graceful decline as oil depletes.
  9. The industrialization of Communist China and India, with their large populations of poor, will generate massive additional demand for oil, and accelerate the passage of Peak Oil and the subsequent collapse.  Brazil is also a factor (a smaller population, but destroying the planetary-significant Amazon Rain Forest).
  10. Asymmetric warfare, as in the war in Iraq is bankrupting the US (i.e., imposing a massive financial burden on the middle class, who must pay (labor) for it), and cannot continue for long.  Terrorists can outspend us.  We will soon be stressed to act fast and hard.  Multiculturalism / tolerance / pluralism will destroy us, or we will destroy them.  We have tied our hands, but will not do this indefinitely (i.e., we will be defeated or “take off the gloves”).  The US government uses a never-ending “War on Terror” to keep the US population under control, but it needs a higher level of control than it currently has in Iraq.

 

The US Has Faced Troubles Before and Survived.  What Is Different Now?

 

Throughout its history, the United States has faced many serious difficulties, challenges and threats, but it has always prevailed in the face of every adversity.  What is different now?  What is it about the current crisis that is different from before, that suggests that the US will fail to overcome the current problem?  Well, there are many things that are very different from any previous challenge faced by the US.  The following list describes aspects of the current crisis that are very different from before.

 

  1. Peak Oil.  US society is highly dependent on massive amounts of oil, and global oil production is about to decline.  Despite six decades of intense research, no comparable substitute for oil has been identified.
  2. Overshoot.  A hundred years ago, if all oil disappeared, nothing would have happened.  Now, however, because of oil, the population has grown to levels that far exceed the solar energy “carrying capacity.”  No suitable substitute for oil has been identified.  As oil exhausts, human society, including US society, will decline in size to the levels that can be supported by current solar energy. 
  3. Income gap.  The ratio of the earnings of top management to those of the workers is extremely large – much larger than ever before.  As long as good times continue, this will not cause a serious difficulty.  As soon as times get difficult (after passage of Peak Oil), this situation will lead to an explosive reaction.
  4. Government war on the middle class.  When the US was founded, the government was “of, by and for the people.”  The government now serves the wealthy elite.  The government has turned on the middle class.  In previous crises (prior to 50 years ago), the survival of the people was threatened, and the government served the people to defend them.  The people stood behind the government, which served them.  That is no longer the case.  The government now serves the wealthy, not the people.  The people’s “representatives” in Congress serve the wealthy elite, not the middle class.  To the extent that the current crisis pertains to the wealthy, the people will not band together to address it.  They will no longer support the government, which no longer serves their interests.  Globalization serves the wealthy, not the masses.  The masses will not fight to save this system, which is destroying them and the biosphere.
  5. The US is now highly fractionated and, with the passage of Peak Oil, will no longer be held together by its great wealth.  The US has had many waves of immigrants, but it always assimilated them in the past.  In the nineteenth century, there was free land for all comers (courtesy of the American Indian).  The free land is now gone, the country is now highly fractionated, and its current source of wealth is oil, which is about to disappear.
  6. No future for a large industrial society.  As oil disappears, people will see that there is no future for their children.  They will see that because of a massive human die-off few people will survive.  Oil and gas will soon be gone, uranium and coal are not comparable substitutes, and recurrent solar energy can support only a fraction of the (world and US) current population.  Many species are gone.  People will despair, and then turn against the system that caused them to “overshoot and collapse.”
  7. The quality of life has declined, and, for most people it will never recover.
  8. The third world has nuclear weapons, and many people wish to use them against us.
  9. India and Communist China, with massive populations, are striving for much higher standards of living for their citizens.  This will increase demand for oil substantially, and accelerate the passage of Peak Oil.  Since the oil supply cannot be increased, the only solution is to reduce demand.  People will not simply sit around and starve to death.  They will not stand by while all of the oil is shipped to the US and other developed nations, while the rest of the world starves to death.  They will attack the US with a vengeance (the “politics of envy”).
  10. Technological limits.  In the past, global food crises could be met by increasing yields and placing more land under cultivation.  The era of increasing yields (the Green Revolution) appears to be over – yields are not increasing, despite much continued scientific research.  Placing more land under production will cause the destruction of the planet’s remaining forests.  With global oil production tapering off, the price of oil has skyrocketed, raising the price of fertilizer and causing the price of food to skyrocket.
  11. The planet is in peril.  Species loss, deforestation, global warming.
  12. Industrially produced food is low in quality.  It is contributing to epidemics in obesity, diabetes, attention deficit / hyperactivity disorder, allergies, colorectal cancer.  Ibuprofen is causing much kidney disease and many thousands of kidney failures.
  13. Debt-based money and growth-based economics.  The US switched to debt-based money in 1971.  The system grows exponentially, consuming more and more of nature as it grows.  It must eventually collapse.
  14. Massive debt with a high compound interest rate.  To expand the national and global economies and to enslave the poor, the US government promoted heavy debt for those who could not handle it (were not creditworthy) – both poor and middle-class American citizen and third-world countries.  The interest rate on this debt (credit-card debt to individuals and international-bank loans to third-world countries) was high (e.g., 20 percent) and the interest was compounded.  This quickly led to unsupportable debt burdens.  For the third-world countries, some of the debt has been forgiven, but just enough to keep the countries alive and forever paying heavy interest to the banks (and forced to submit to agreements that serve only the banks and their leaders).  This system has caused massive resentment on the part of the borrowers – both individuals in the US (credit-card holders, home mortgage holders) and the citizens of third-world countries.  The only way out is to destroy the system.  Recently (and ironically), the US has joined the ranks of the highly indebted poor countries, with a massive national debt owned by foreign interests.  This does not bother either the country’s wealthy elite or the planet’s wealthy elite, who view the US simply as one of their “operating departments.”  Having the US mired in debt keeps it well in control, and its people working ever more desperately to pay the interest on the debt.
  15. Corporatism.  The US is no longer a sovereign nation, but is under the control of the planet’s wealthy elite, under the planetary management system of corporatism (perhaps Corporatism, with a capital “C” is indicated).  The US is simply one of the many governments / countries that the planet’s plutocracy controls.  As an independent nation in control of its destiny, the US has failed.  Perhaps this is the greatest rationale for the title of this book.  With respect to the principles of the Founders, the US no longer exists, and it really is finished.

 

Can Anything Be Done?

 

The following is a summary list of America’s problems.  It is interesting to see which of them might be addressed, and which of them are intractable.

 

  1. Mass immigration.  Could be stopped.  Mass deportation of illegal aliens could be accomplished quickly and easily, but is not feasible in today’s political climate.  There is no desire (on the part of the government or its wealthy controllers) or will.
  2. Massive international free trade.  Could be stopped.  No desire or will.
  3. Open borders.  Could be closed.  No desire or will.
  4. Culture change has already happened.  It is too late.  We cannot go back.  Culture is like the arrow of time and entropy.  A rotten culture does not evolve to a good one, any more than a rotten apple evolves to a sound one.  The rotten culture will be destroyed and, like the Phoenix, a new one will emerge from its ashes.  (A few firms have succeeded in reinventing themselves, such as Singer (sewing machines to aerospace), Goodrich (tires to aerospace) and Nokia (rubber boots to cellphones), but it does not appear that cultures do this.)  US culture, now infected with third-world culture, is permanently changed (“damaged”).  The US government has destroyed the Teutonic (Northern European, Nordic) culture that founded the US and made it great.  Multiculturalism, political correctness, radical egalitarianism are rampant, endemic.  The US government, established of, by and for the people, has now turned on the middle class and serves the wealthy elite.
  5. Environmental destruction / species loss.  Environmental destruction can be reversed to some degree in the US, but the massive loss of species worldwide cannot be reversed.  The annual recurring species loss cannot be stopped without an end to large human numbers and global industrialization.  Species loss is permanent.
  6. Peak Oil.  Cannot be stopped.
  7. Global industrialization.  Will come to a permanent end (from Peak Oil, species loss, or global warming), no matter what.  It is not sustainable, even for a short time.  It is destroying the biosphere.  As astronomer / science-fiction writer Fred Hoyle observed, we only had one chance at industrial society, and we blew it (i.e., human society consumed the massive supply of easily extracted resources / energy, without using them to transition to a long-term-sustainable solar civilization).  The system of globalization is based on growth-based economics: the currency and banking system is based on debt-based money and compound interest.  These are exponential processes and they cannot continue indefinitely.  Many borrowers will end up with unsupportable levels of debt, and be at the mercy of the lenders.  The lenders will forgive just enough debt to keep the borrowers alive and able to continue paying a maximal amount, in perpetual slavery.  It appears that the system of global industrialization (growth-based economics, debt-based money and banking, compound interest) cannot be stopped, and its imminent demise cannot be avoided.  It is greed-based (and, to some extent, fear-based), and the system is in an extreme “overshoot” condition (i.e., the large human population can be supported only by continuation of large-scale industrial agriculture).  People will be motivated to continue to support the system because if it stops, they will die.  The fact that they will die soon anyway is not a consideration – they will cling to life to the bitter end, no matter what the consequences for the biosphere or humanity’s future generations.  If the system of global industrialization were halted, world population would collapse.  The controllers of the world will not halt the system prematurely, but continue to operate it as long as possible, until it collapses by itself when the oil runs out (or other globalization-caused catastrophe occurs).
  8. Global warming.  Cannot be stopped, or at least not quickly, without an immediate end to industrial globalization.  As mentioned earlier, this system will not be voluntarily halted, but will soon end of its own accord.  (It  is noted that there is disagreement over the cause of global warming (although not over the fact that it is occurring).)

 

So, of the preceding problems, for only three of them (mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders) can anything significant be done.  For culture change, positive change is very unlikely (no examples).  Growth-based economics (debt-based money, interest) are unlikely to be abandoned, since it would stop the flow of wealth from the poor to the rich, and the rich are in charge and want to continue the system even if its imminent collapse is inevitable and its continued operation is destroying the biosphere.  Much global warming has already occurred (witness desertification, glacier melting) and has caused permanent damage.  It is generally believed that further warming will continue as long as global industrialization continues.  The rest of the problems are irreversible (e.g., the species loss that has already occurred) or inevitable (e.g., Peak Oil).  It is too late to save the US, since it has destroyed the culture that made it great.  It is not too late to save the planet (see, e.g., The Omega Project to establish a minimal-regret population) – but that is not the subject of this book.

 

The paragraphs that follow discuss the issue of what approaches have been proposed to address the problem, and what might be done.

 

Proposals to Date

 

A lot of books have been written making suggestions about what can be done to save the biosphere and the United States.  The books that I have seen on saving the United States are irrelevant, because they do not address the root causes of the problem (e.g., Peak Oil, destruction of the biosphere), and do not have the goal of saving the biosphere from additional destruction.  They do not advocate closing the borders, stopping immigration and stopping free trade.  They do not advocate an end to growth-based economics (debt-based money, compound interest), although some suggest modifications (e.g., Ellen Hodgson Brown, The Web of Debt (2007, 2008)).  They do not suggest how to reduce large human numbers and industrial activity.  They do not propose an end to corporatism.  They do not even address treatment of the major symptoms of the causes, such as such as decline in culture, overpopulation, dependence on oil, lack of work (because of transfer of manufacturing capacity overseas), drugs, destruction of the environment, ever-increasing numbers of people in direst poverty, and loss of security.  These books include many of the works cited in the section on America’s discontent, such as Pat Buchanan’s The Death of the West (2002), State of Emergency (2006) and Day of Reckoning (2007) (although Mr. Buchanan does suggest a few stronger measures than most people do, such as termination of birthright citizenship).

 

In short, there are no books of which I am aware that provide any recipe for saving the US – all of them promote continuance of the current system, which has destroyed it.  Some, such as Evan Mecham’s Come Back America (1982) and Thom Hartmann’s What Would Jefferson Do? (2004) suggest that the country return to its founding principles.  But it is too late for that, either from a cultural viewpoint or a physical viewpoint.  From a physical viewpoint, it is in an extreme “overshoot” condition, Peak Oil is upon us, and collapse is imminent.  From a cultural viewpoint, America will never return to the original principles of its founders.  America’s present leaders eschew the principles of the founders to serve the people.  They are addicted to wealth production and will not change.  The culture has changed. It has changed both from the passage of time (e.g., the generation that passed the income tax in 1913 was different from the culture that founded the country without an income tax) and mass migration from alien cultures has occurred and permanently modified the culture further.  Richard Nixon’s world of 1971, when he abandoned metal-based money for debt-based money, was totally different from the country and world of the Founders.  You can’t go home again.  The evolution of cultures and countries is a one-way street.  Like time and entropy and aging, it is an irreversible process that only goes one way.  Unfortunately, America has taken a “dead end” and has almost reached the end of the road.

 

The current system of government in the US cannot be changed from within.  Each election simply replaces the incumbent politicians with others who also serve the wealthy elite.  The system works to maintain the military-industrial complex / global industrialization system as long as it can, regardless of the damage to the biosphere, to produce wealth for today’s generation of wealthy elite.  None of the leading US presidential contenders (McCain, Clinton, Obama) will address any issues of planetary management, such as a response to global warming, species loss, deforestation, overfishing, the industrialization of Communist China and India, or Peak Oil.  They will not even discuss issues of national importance, such as the destruction of US culture, environment and quality of life for the middle class because of mass immigration, massive international free trade and open borders, and the takeover of US culture by Jewish culture.

 

To hear the three leading presidential candidates jabbering and giving pep talks about meaningless “change” while the planet’s biosphere and the country (as a sovereign state for the people) are being destroyed by global Corporatism, is sickening.  They are acting like cheerleaders for Corporatism.   They are all the same, Democrat or Republican.  They are in full support of the wealthy elite and are committed to continuation of the current Corporatist system.  That is why the problems facing society never seem to have solutions – solutions are proposed only within the framework of the Corporatist system, and it is that system that has generated the problems!  It is the system that is flawed.  It is the system that is the root cause of the problems.  The problems that it causes are fundamental to it, and will never be solved by continuing it.  The system (Corporatism) is intended only to benefit the planet’s wealthy elite.  It has destroyed America as a sovereign nation for the people, and it is destroying the planet’s biosphere.

 

The reason why society’s problems appear so intractable, and that nothing can be done to solve them, is that, under (within) the current system, nothing can be done to solve them.  The current system is based on continuous exponential growth – not just of money and economic activity and debt, but people as well.  Any system based on exponential growth must eventually fail.  The salient feature of exponential processes (contained within finite systems) is that when failure occurs, it happens incredibly fast.  Exponential growth is explosive, and explosions do not last very long.  We are in fact in the final stages of exponential growth of the Corporatist system of industrial globalization.  We are “locked in” the final stages, like a space ship speeding toward a black hole.  For the passengers on the ship, nothing seems very unusual.  But to an outside observer, the near-instantaneous termination of the process (gravitational acceleration is an exponential process) is evident.  The future will be upon us in the blink of an eye, and there is nothing at this point that can be done to avert it.

 

Once it happened that Christianity (ever the handmaiden of capitalism) had approved and society had adopted compound interest and debt-based money (two exponential-growth processes) as the basis for Western civilization, its demise was assured.  Its fate was determined and its doom was sealed.  Natural systems that last for a long time can never be based (overall) on long-term exponential growth – that is the process that you see when an algal bloom consumes a pond, or bacteria consume a dead animal.  Systems that are based fundamentally on exponential growth cannot be the basis for a long-term-sustainable large-scale stable system.

 

With respect to saving the planet’s biosphere, things are hardly any better.  People do not seem to realize that to save the planet’s biosphere means bringing large human numbers and global industrialization to an end.  In his book, Green Rage (1990), Christopher Manes summarized a program for ecological reform.  This program included the following main features (summarized in Dixie Lee Ray’s Environmental Overkill (1993)):

 

  • Deindustrialization of the West
  • Reduction of human population
  • Elimination of all use of fossil fuel, including automobiles, coal-fired plants, and manufacturing processes using petrochemicals
  • End of all monoculture and cattle production
  • End of all commercial logging
  • Restoration of wilderness on developed land
  • Reintroduction of large predators, such as grizzly bears and wolves.

 

None of the books that I have read on resolving the current crisis (either US or planetary) presents any program for accomplishing objectives such as are listed above.  Examples are Willy Brandt’s North-South: A Program for Survival (1980), Paul and Anne Ehrlich’s Healing the Planet (1991), Lester Brown’s Plan B 2.0 (2006) and Plan B 3.0 (2008) and Jeffrey Sachs’ The End of Poverty (2005) and Common Wealth (2008).  Many more books on “economic development” are listed in the References.  With respect to identifying or suggesting a path to a solution, they are all useless.  They describe the problem, but offer no credible solutions.  They all promote working within the existing system (growth-based economics, global industrialization) to make fundamental reversals of the ongoing planetary destruction.  This has not happened to any degree in fifty years of trying, and it will never happen.  “Band-Aid” (TMR) fixes that attempt to treat the symptoms of an overall exponential-growth process have negligible effect (e.g., trying to solve the poverty problem that is caused by growth-based economics by proposing more economic growth is ludicrous).  As Einstein once remarked, the kind of thinking that created a problem is unlikely to find a solution to it.  Under several decades of this approach, things have gotten profoundly worse – world population has doubled, 70-80 million people are added to the planet every year, massive deforestation and species loss continue, and the number of people living in dire poverty and squalor increases every year.  These books are filled with descriptions of the disaster that has happened, and applying modern technology and economics.  They are filled with hand-wringing and “shoulds,” “coulds,” “woulds,” “if onlys,” “if we don’t soon, thens” and “it is almost too lates.”  All of the world’s leaders are calling for more industrialization and improved material standards of living, not less.  No leader is calling for massive population reduction – or for any population reduction at all.  It is economics (“modern economic growth”) that got us into this mess, and it will not get us out of it.  No leader is calling for abandonment of growth-based economics.

 

Jeffrey Sachs’ Proposals

 

I said above that the books on the subject of the state of the world and how to fix it were useless.  In fact, they are worse than useless.  They are downright misleading and deceitful.  They create false hopes that an easy solution is feasible, ant thereby “buy time” to keep the current system alive, causing continued destruction of the biosphere.  They help insure that the current system will continue for as long as possible, with maximal damage to the biosphere, to catastrophic collapse.  Promotion of absurd proposals for solution is simply diverting attention from consideration of practical (realistic) solution alternatives.  Society is quite eager to accept these “easy” solutions, however, since they offer the promise that good times will last forever.  They enable denial.  For example, in his book, Common Wealth (2008), Jeffrey Sachs recommends the implementation of a program of fertility reduction, stating that if this is done the global population will level off at about eight billion people by 2050.  People love to hear this rosy assurance.  My first reaction to Sachs’ proposal is that the planet’s biosphere is being utterly destroyed by its present population of 6.7 billion, and that this process was well under way with the much smaller population of 3 billion, fifty years ago (1960).  How can anyone seriously recommend any program that increases global population by another third?  How can anyone seriously recommend any program that is tantamount to promoting the continuing the extinction of 30,000 species a year for the next several decades?

 

My second reaction is that the program that he recommends flies in the fact of facts.  Sachs got the number of 8 billion from the 2006 United Nations 2006 Revision of World Population Prospects.  Under the “low-fertility assumption,” world population will peak at about 8 billion in 2050, and then slowly decline.  Under the “medium-fertility assumption,” world population reaches 9 billion in 2050, and continues to increase each year by a little less than its current rate of 70-80 million per year.  The basic assumption in the low-fertility case, or scenario, or “variant,” is that the total fertility rate (TFR) of all countries converges eventually to a level of 1.35 children per woman.  The basic assumption for the medium-fertility variant is that the TFR converges eventually to 1.85 children per woman (this decline is called a “demographic transition”).  In fact, neither of these assumptions is at all realistic.  More importantly, the projections suppress the effects of migration – the projections assume that migration rates for all countries converge to zero, very soon.  If you examine historical population data, however, you will see that very few countries allow their populations to shrink for a very long time.  If their TFR falls significantly below replacement level (2-2.1) so that after a generation or two (allowing for population “momentum”) their population, in the absence of immigration, would start to decline, then they almost invariably increase immigration to compensate for their declining birth rates.

 

Here follows a table that shows the annual population growth rates (AGRs) for all countries for which the TFR declined to 2.0 prior to 1980.  The table shows that the average population growth rate for such countries after twenty to forty years (one to two generations) is .58 percent (a massively high population growth rate, if continued for very long).  In the absence of migration, the annual growth rate for most of these countries after 1-2 generations would be negative – their populations would be shrinking.  The fact is that any country that achieves a sustained TFR of less than two is economically developed, and under the global system of growth-based economics, no economically developed country is going to tolerate a shrinking population for long – it will increase migration to offset population decline from TFRs less than two.  It is totally unrealistic to imagine that, if the current system continues, the world population will level off at 8 billion by 2050.  Despite the evidence of this seemingly universal response to shrinking population, not only do the population projections on which Sachs is basing his recommendations assume that TFRs for all countries converge to below-replacement level, but the migration rates for all countries are assumed to converge to zero!  The population projection that Sachs is using is based on totally absurd assumptions that fly in the face of reality.

 

(The preceding observations beg the question that if all TFRs decline to 1.35 or even to 1.85, there will eventually be no population available for immigration, so where will the immigrants come from?  Well, it is totally unrealistic to imagine that the TFR will decline to less than 2 for all of the word’s countries.  Aggressive fertility-reduction programs such as are outlined by Sachs have been around for a long time, and there are many countries for which the fertility rates remain at very high levels and show little susceptibility to decline.  There are a few examples of countries where these programs have reduced the TFR to replacement level, but there are many, many countries where this has not happened and is not happening.  In order for Sachs’ utopian projection to materialize, the TFR must converge quickly to below-replacement level for all countries.  If even a single country continues with a high TFR, global population will eventually expand.)

 

 

ID

Country

Year of TFR=2

Pop in that year

Pop 20 years later

Pop2003

NetMig96-00

AGR2003

TFR2003

GDPPC2003

10

Luxembourg

1970

339800

381900

448000

19570

1.01

1.63

46067

12

Norway

1975

4007000

4360000

4562000

67380

0.53

1.8

40482

5

Channel Is.

1972

122000

144090

149000

2520

0

1.75