America Doesn’t Have A Foreign Policy, It Has A Business Plan

Business as usual

W.J. Astore

America doesn’t have a foreign policy, it has a business plan, and it’s business as usual in the Biden administration. Joe Biden promised his donors that nothing would fundamentally change in his administration. Kamala Harris said her agenda wasn’t about substantive change. So what we’re getting under the Biden/Harris team is eminently predictable:

  1. More blank checks for Israel, and no recognition of any rights for Palestinians.
  2. A revival of the old Cold War, with China as the leading “threat” but with Russia not forgotten.
  3. Politics subordinated to the military, rather than the military in service of political aims. In brief, military dominance is America’s foreign policy.
  4. Related to (1-3) is dominance of the world’s trade in weapons. The State Department has become a tiny branch of the Pentagon and the military-industrial complex. It’s all about closing arms deals, moving hardware, selling weaponry, making a buck.
  5. Naturally, one of Biden’s first acts as president was to bomb a foreign country, in this case Syria. So presidential!

In Joe Biden, America has a fading and flailing man to lead a fading and flailing empire. In Kamala Harris, America has an example of old wine in new packaging. She’s a woman, she’s Black, she’s South Asian — and she thinks like Hillary Clinton and Henry Kissinger.

Joined at the hip

Remember when Joe Biden said he’d be all about diplomacy? That the power of America’s example would rule over the example of our power? Nice words, but that’s all they’ve been so far. Words.

Two examples where Biden has appeared to offer meaningful change are with Afghanistan and Yemen. With Afghanistan, Biden has promised a complete military withdrawal by 9/11/2021. But does this apply only to combat troops while excluding mercenaries, the CIA, special forces “trainers,” and the like? It’s not yet clear. Plus anything can happen between now and 9/11 for Biden to switch gears and keep some combat troops in place.

With Yemen, Biden made a point about excluding offensive arms sales to Saudi Arabia while still allowing defensive ones. Almost any weapon can be labeled as defensive in nature, so it’s doubtful whether Saudi operations in Yemen will be impacted at all by Biden’s weasel-word policies.

The Biden/Harris foreign policy, such as it is, is retrograde. It’s a return to the Cold War, with an emphasis on new nuclear weapons and larger Pentagon budgets. It’s about global dominance while America at home burns. It’s foolish and stupid yet it will make a few people richer for a few more business cycles.

And thus it’s business as usual in Washington, which is exactly what Biden/Harris were hired for.

58 thoughts on “America Doesn’t Have A Foreign Policy, It Has A Business Plan

  1. On the one hand I cannot help but think it is good, America slowly destroying itself, because I am fed up with the bullying, cheating, stealing, fighting in other countries, while at home people going to the dogs.
    Perhaps it is good this way so the world will have peace one day. It will only stop if enough people are hungry.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. you speak common sense, helga. the USofAirheads are self-destructing due to their esurience, ignorance, arrogance, and macho-militarism. what we can do to proactively hasten their demise i cannot presage, but it would be of nugatory impact compared to what they are self-inflicting, particularly on depauperate, struggling, and besieged americans… by their own ‘leadership’ of corporate and MIC myrmidons.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Regarding the “thinking like Kissinger” part: I’ve read several interviews with and pieces by that warmongering old psychopath where he states that the extremely aggressive, war-stoking approach to Russia (and to an extent China) that have become the standard thinking in Washington in the past decade is dangerous, reckless and unjustified. When a policy is too warlike and risky for Kissinger things have gotten more than a little out of hand.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. As a veteran of the Nixon-Kissinger Fig Leaf Contingent (Vietnam 1970-72) I refuse to believe that a little fourth-rate “statesman” like Henry Kissinger doesn’t have a breaking point.

      Or, as Chairman Mao told the unctuous minion desperate for China’s permission to exit America’s self-inflicted Southeast Asian quagmire: “If I wanted nothing from you, I wouldn’t have invited you. And if you wanted nothing from me, you should not have come.”

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  3. You have provided a detailed diagnosis of the cancerous self absorbed condition that has been afflicting the western mind since it first plotted it’s course away from the original principles. Western manifestation has refused to practice the age old tradition of self realization. We encase our courage behind walls and weapons and have so far been fearful of exiting the castle gate and crossing the moats that is overflowing with the waste products we have been excreting through pipelines that exit from within our selfish structure. There is no bravery within the land and a definite lack of heroism vibrating from the politics of our state. Someday let us hope the western mind will embark on the heroes journey; by partaking in the cup of pride at the alter of self sacrifice. Swallowing a gulp of gloat will not kill the valiant trooper; it is not a poison. It is a medicinal potion that will burnish the film from reality’s mirror that covers the reflection of the original self. Only then will the West take up equanimous residence within creation; blending it’s true nature within the native structures of existence. For now we must seek forgiveness for we know not what we do!

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  4. Who needs a foreign policy when — as House Speaker Tip O’Neil profoundly observed: “All politics is local”? Still, the supranational Corporate Oligarchy (or, SPECTRE, as my wife likes to say) does permit easily bullied Americans to indulge in self-serving fantasies about their nation’s “dominance” of . . .

    Boobie International Relations
    (from Fernando Po, U.S.A., America’s post-literate retreat to Plato’s Cave)

    When William Randolph Hearst dispatched
    His man to Cuba’s shore
    He told him in specific terms
    What he had sent him for:
    To find a war ship resting on
    Havana Harbor’s floor

    But when the man observed The Maine
    Afloat like days before
    He telegraphed his boss of this
    Which angered Hearst, who swore:
    “Look: you supply the pictures, friend,
    And I’ll supply the war.”

    So, soon the mighty Maine went down;
    On schedule, so it seemed
    Newspapers showed the pictures and
    The bold-faced headlines screamed
    Into Manila Harbor, then,
    The US Navy steamed

    In dealing with a world of facts
    It often helps to know
    Just what the facts are, anyway,
    And what they truly show
    But if your head’s stuck up your butt
    Then grab your nose and blow

    We’ve overthrown their governments
    And placed our men in charge
    We’ve threatened and we’ve bullied them
    With bribes both small and large
    And now we say we’re “shocked!” to find
    There’s gambling on the barge

    Don’t look upon his willful works
    With jaundiced attitudes
    Just think of him and all his friends
    As studly Texas dudes
    Or soldiers Photoshopped to look
    Like joyous multitudes

    As Paul O’Neill described his take
    On Boobie Cabinetry:
    A truly scary scene takes place
    Of great perplexity
    Where those who cannot hear surround
    The one who cannot see

    But Boobie pundits cover up
    And in their Newspeak bleat:
    “None doubt that he has not undone
    All wrongs upon his beat.”
    (In pundit parlance, mush like this
    Counts as a wondrous feat)

    John Bolton gave the neocons
    Precisely what they sought
    A dense prolific problem
    Whose opinions could be bought;
    Who had a brain the size of Maine
    But never had a thought

    For decades he had toiled away
    In stink-tank padded cells
    A schizophrenic bat who had
    No belfry for his bells
    An unexploded hand grenade
    In one of Dante’s hells

    By day he hung from ceilings in
    His bureaucratic cave
    At night he flew away to meet
    With those who duly gave
    Him orders and instructions as
    To how he should behave

    A bat-like mole fifth columnist
    Installed by Dick and Don
    To undermine his boss’s work
    From sundown until dawn
    Subordinates he downward kicked
    While upwards he would fawn

    Observers wondered why the State
    Department failed to work
    How could it with its boss’s blood
    Leached from him by a jerk?
    Placed at his neck by rivals who
    Found treachery a perk

    But Boobie Powell must have told
    The Boobie Rice of this
    Or else Queen of the Damned required
    No further vampire kiss
    So Bolton flew to the UN
    Upon whom he could piss

    He held in thrall the credulous
    Like pundit David Brooks
    Who thought that years of schizoid rants
    Made “interesting” books
    (Asylums everywhere contain
    Such “interesting” kooks)

    In clinical psychology
    The basic terms are known:
    The classic schizophrenic hears
    No voice except his own
    And, hence, from time to time erupts
    In symptoms fully blown

    So Boobie George conceived a plan
    To win back jilted friends
    He’d send a man to woo them who
    Believed that each rule bends;
    That any means the Boobies used
    Would justify their ends

    One hardly needs to speculate
    About what will ensue
    When Boobie Bolton tells the world
    What homage we are due
    For telling them to go to hell
    And how next we’ll them screw

    Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2006

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  5. Well….but foreign policy must be subservient to domestic policy. Oh, wait…

    And actually, Tom Friedman at the NY Times wrote a column last week admonishing that the U.S. must resolve the Israeli-Palestinian issue in a way that mends the divisions in the Democratic party. Could. not. believe. that. one.

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  6. A few days back, you had a what if piece about Germany winning WW1.

    I have a what if…what if the United States had not decided to destroy communism everywhere it could directly (and failing in Vietnam) or by proxy in the wild adventures starting with the Dulles brothers? In the histories I have read a theme emerges of the USSR not standing up to support third world communist groups against CIA actions even when called upon by them to do so. The only place the USSR would not give an inch was in eastern Europe where it was determined that nothing like the German invasion of WW2 could ever happen again.

    The U.S., in contrast, was determined to bring down communism regardless of the loss of life in countries where a communist party was active. Vietnam is, of course, the icon for the effort, but true horrors occurred in other places as well, most significantly Indonesia where after a failure to get rid of Sukarno in the 50’s because the Indonesian military stood by him, the U.S. took the standard course in the 60’s, befriending the military and having it oversee a slaughter of communist party members, even supplying a list of names of people that should be, and were, killed. This caused real delight in Washington and was done in Guatemala in 1954, Iraq in 1963 in addition to Indonesia in 1965.

    Robert Martens was the U.S. embassy guy who with the CIA created the kill list for the Indonesian army. He later said, “I probably have a lot of blood on my hands, but that’s not bad.” (he was thus quoted in the Washington Post in 1990)

    What is the trouble with communism? It outlaws private profit and that means no businesses may come in as we know U.S. businesses are always eager to do. The idea that a profit can be made somewhere in the world, but is prevented by popular opinion from doing so has resulted in a multitude of deaths around the globe with U.S. support, giving proof of what your title for this post proclaims.

    What makes this tragedy particularly bad is that American capitalism produces the goods without question while communism fails dismally at that task. People around the world eagerly embrace the kind of consumption we know. People died trying to escape east Germany and there was elation across eastern Europe when the USSR collapsed. Suppose we had allowed our model to sell itself and patiently waited for local changes in distant places instead of bulling our way in with compliant armies with death squads and unlimited weaponry for them to do dirty work? Because that would mean profit delayed.

    Though never presented in school books of U.S. or world history as I was growing up, in the Cold War there was one side that was relentlessly aggressive and it was us. What we learned in school was the opposite. Newsreels of crowds in more than one distant land angrily denouncing the CIA presented a scene of genuine anger at what was going on by order of our government, while the U.S. press kept we the people comfortably deluded. Fake news is not new.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. As I recall, during the early Sixties the popular phrase used to describe US activities around the globe was that we were “exporting democracy.” LIFE Magazine even had photos to prove it (Green Beret “military advisors” showing Vietnamese kids how to play baseball, for instance).

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    2. Capitalism is the American religion. We worship the dollar sign at the altar. Hence no one sees the contradiction in the “prosperity gospel.” Greed is good! Let’s export it too!

      Liked by 1 person

    3. So the installation of missiles in Cuba was a defensive measure on the Soviets’ part, then? I’d never considered it that way. Hmmm…

      I question the U.S.S.R.’s totally benign intentions, while noting that the Soviets did not practice true communism, but there’s no doubt in mind at all that the U.S. has been an aggressor many times over.

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      1. Fidel Castro did not want to be aligned with the Soviet Union, however, after the Bay of Pigs invasion he knew it was only a matter of time before a more organized invasion would occur. His brother, Raoul, pushed for Soviet help to prevent a future invasion. The threat of invasion, and Kennedy’s repeated attempts at assassinating Fidel pushed Castro into accepting the Soviet offer.

        How different things could have been if we had let the Cubans plan their own destiny and treated that country with respect.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Agree wholeheartedly with your last sentence, William. The first part of your comment, however, would seem to buttress the idea that the Soviets were not exactly playing defense, if I understand you correctly.

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      2. Denise, I’m not claiming the USSR was benign, but outside of that country beyond eastern Europe it did not stand up for groups that looked to it for support, being hesitant to do so if it did not refuse outright. It was obsessed with competition with the US by showing superiority internally with industrialization and agriculture and science, in all of which it failed. This is in contrast to “red” China that would export help to other countries even when it didn’t have enough to support its own people.

        The US was (is) obsessed with the defeat of communism and, outside of Europe, even socialism. In no case could any country opposed to capitalism be allowed to succeed out of fear that the success could spread. The notorious example of Allende’s Chile shows American fanaticism as the US teamed up with the Brazilian dictatorship (admired by Nixon) to do whatever was necessary to make Allende’s mild socialism fail. The US was always on the case anywhere and everywhere with plenty of money, plenty of arms, plenty of training for officers of any military no matter how ruthless and despotic and always a plan of action from the State Department and the CIA. The #1 effort is to make foreign elections go our way. The #2 effort is to wreak havoc if they don’t, the citizenry be damned. Burger King says to have it your way, but Uncle Sam says you will have it our way or you will be sorry until you do. This is unalloyed empire. Even Rome would leave the provincials to do things their way.

        This continues today. The US makes life as hard as possible for tiny Cuba and need I mention Venezuela? Right now Peru is to choose in a presidential election between the far left and the far right with none other than Alberto Fujimori’s daughter in the race with a good chance of winning. I’ve no doubt gears are turning in DC and because of this, how can poor Peru possibly have a good outcome either way?

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        1. you speak w/ broad awareness and comprehensive knowledge that is fact-based, wja, which is why your blogs deliver balance, accuracy, and veracity. every 3rd-/4th-world country in which we have lived and worked since the 1960’s [particularly in africa, caribbean island states, and south/southeast asia], china has quietly spent, w/out obstreperous fanfare, hundreds of millions in aid monies to build infrastructural services such as sewers, hospitals, schools, roads, and dams [to supply electricity and water-control to remote regions where none was otherwise available]. china has also provided agricultural products and telecommunications networks to countries like nepal, cambodia, laos, and sierra leone, w/ no strings attached, unlike the capitalist US, whose aid agency USAID w/ whom we were on contract: USAID demanded that every item we purchased to implement our projects was to be purchased from the US, even pencils, rather than be purchased locally whose products were less expensive, of same or higher quality, and did not need to be transhipped halfway around the planet.

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    4. The so called Christian Mega Pastors, living the lifestyle of the rich and famous, refuse to acknowledge the 1st Century followers of Christ even unto Death, as Jesus suffered the torture of Crucifixion, lived a God led communist Lifestyle long before Marx’s Communist Manifesto seeing the stark contrasts between the Nobility and the Commoner in 19th Century England.

      And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
      And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
      And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
      Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
      Acts 2:44-47

      This early Christian communist lifestyle is re-affirmed in Acts 4:32-35
      And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.

      And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.
      Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,
      And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.

      Understandably, the rich slave and land owners, would perceive that common outlook growing and spreading among the People, as a threat to their prerogatives and Power, and would attempt to stamp out those spreading such Revolutionary notions as a terrorist threat to the Status Quo.

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  7. in 1957, i had a high school history teacher who had emigrated out of germany to upstate NY. she taught our class that communism was the salvation of the benighted workers of russia and across the globe who had slaved under the imperious, autocratic, obscene esurience of european aristocrats and capitalists for so many centuries that finally, when they could no longer feed their families, rose up in unified forces against the privileged monarchies. communism was their haunting, final scream for relief. she also taught us that the russian citizens were no different from us; they were only beseeching equity and egalitarian access to russia’s resources. i remain in the debt of that high school history teacher to this day; she helped me understand how duplicitous the media and the US govt’s anti-communist propaganda was, especially the heinous crimes of red-baiting joseph mccarthy and his consociate hate-mongerers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. In the spirit of playing devil’s advocate….

      How to explain Stalin’s pogroms, then, and the forced work camps, repression of all dissent, plus the utter poverty and deprivation across the Soviet Union for many decades? My thought is that in 1917, the vast majority of Russians effectively traded serfdom for another type of slavery. I base this opinion on independent reading, not history courses, but admittedly, I may not have the whole story.

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      1. no one ever has the whole story, denise, nor ever will. that is precisely why i applaud anyone who has the courage to stand in front of a classroom of teenagers in a public school and claim a different narrative, one that dares question or inveighs against the proffered propaganda contaminating most high school history textbooks, particularly those textbooks distributed among high schools during the 1950’s ‘cold war’ subversions. it is one of the reasons science is so appealing; one is taught to ‘question everything’, right from the outset.

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        1. By all means, questioning the narrative is always essential. At the same time, there’s no need to throw the baby out with the bath water, so to speak.

          In this case, for instance, I don’t think a balanced reading of history will support a claim that the majority of Russian people rose up in a unified way and proclaimed the Communists as saviors. Perhaps in the cities, there were large rallies, but overall, I’d bet that the people thought it was six of one, half dozen of the other, especially as the (privileged) Communist Party was such a small percentage of the population, and the Politburo much smaller still. As Stalin is said to have killed more people than Hitler, I’d guess the bloom was off the rose sooner rather than later. Then there was the widespread starvation when the agriculture plans failed, for instance. And so on. In the end, I don’t think there was much to admire about the Soviet Union. Which is in no way a defense of any actions the U.S. has taken in the last 100 years, of course.

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          1. that is neither what i said ,denise, nor intended to imply. perhaps you misunderstood. i only meant to suggest that one must weigh all sides of an issue after gathering as much fact-based information as POSSIBLE, then draw one’s own conclusions. this is not an intellectual exercise that is in the realm of possibility if one is fed naught but propaganda and one-sided narratives, even at the high school level. i appreciated the opportunity my history teacher from germany propined us; she inspired our classroom of students to recognize there were alternative narratives and to exercise our responsibility to dig deeper and weigh the results. in the cold-war period of the 1950’s, history texts never offered opposing narratives. perhaps US history texts today are not infused w/ the propaganda infecting 1950’s history apologiae and justifications. admittedly, i am hardly au-courant and decidedly uninformed about current US high school history textbooks and public classroom ambits.

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          2. Apologies: I have indeed misunderstood, it seems. I judged from the enthusiasm of your description of your teacher’s viewpoint that you endorsed it. What you were actually applauding, then, was that it differed from the standard textbook narrative, yes?

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          3. the comments were meant to applaud my teacher, not her specific viewpoint. she courageously stood before that classroom of puerile young adults and offered us a deeper lesson, videlicet, to listen, hear, and mentate over different narratives, especially unpopular ones that most others in the 1950’s zeitgeist would consider seditious.

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      2. Speaking of the trading of “isms”!
        Ask the first peoples who “traded” about such experiences.
        There’s no way to tell how much abuse
        you’ll be able to take while one is locked in the moment that contains the first kiss?

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I’ve been listening to Robert Scheer talk to Dennis Kucinich. Their point: the game is rigged everywhere, whether under capitalism or communism. The battle is the elites, the powerful, the corrupted, against everyone else. Doesn’t matter which “ism” you subscribe to.

    Kucinich makes an excellent point. It’s not about political ideology. It’s about seeing matters truthfully, honestly, and forensically, then taking principled stands for regular people instead of for the elites. As easy as this is to say, it’s far more difficult to do. Kucinich was the target of a mafia hit and a rifle shot just missed his head in his own home.

    Of course, Kucinich was ultimately screwed by his own party, the Democrats. He was way too honest and principled for the party of Clinton, Obama, and Biden.

    https://scheerpost.com/2021/06/04/dennis-kucinich-from-sleeping-in-a-car-as-a-kid-to-16-years-in-congress/

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    1. Dennis took on the mob-controlled Cleveland trash hauling industry, as well. An article I read years ago said that the mob hit was related to his attempts to break that trash monopoly.

      On a bright note, Dennis is circulating petitions to get his name on the ballot for this fall’s Cleveland mayoral election. He would not only be a VAST improvement over the retiring incumbent, he’d be a thousand times better than the incumbent’s hand-picked choice as successor. The corruption has become even more entrenched since Dennis’ last term as mayor, and as his own party has undermined him, I have no idea what his chances are, but I think I still have my old “Dennis!” yard sign…

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    2. Speaking of Dennis Kucinich and his new book, Matt Taibbi has two recent articles expanding on the former Cleveland mayor, U.S. Congressman, and presidential candidate’s views. For those who do not have access to Mr Taibbi’s essays and reporting, I have made two copies (highlighting some of the points I found most interesting):

      (1) Interview with Dennis Kucinich on his new book, “The Division of Light and Power”, Substack.com (June 1, 2021)

      (2) Just How Rigged is the “Rigged Game”?, Substack.com (June 1, 2021)
      ——–
      In my opinion, the following exchange from (1) gets closest to the issue of transnational corporate oligarchy — i.e., predatory empire — and the mockery this historical development has made of quaint ideas like the “Nation State” whose subjects like to imagine themselves something other than a marketing territory and population containment zone when in reality they serve as nothing more than commodity consumers — if not “labor” commodities themselves — deeply in debt to the imperial corporate subsidiary franchise they misconceive of as their particular “country.”

      MT: The book starts with a really interesting epigraph about fighting City Hall from City Hall, where you say that in order to fight City Hall, you have to first find where it is. City Hall is not just the physical structure, but the banks, the real estate combines, the investor-backed utilities [emphasis added] . . .

      Dennis Kucinich: And the mob.

      MT: And the mob, right. So, today, nationally, where is City Hall, for people interested in fighting it? You’ve been in congress. What are some of those forces that are major players that people maybe don’t think about as much? [emphasis added]

      Dennis Kucinich: You have to look at Wall Street. We have a finance economy now. Look at the arms manufacturers. Our monetary system changed over 100 years ago. The monetary system was privatized. That’s another subject for another day. But the fact of the matter is that you’ve got Wall Street, you’ve got big money, you’ve got the banks, you’ve got multinational corporations. The whole idea of nationhood is up for redefinition. [emphasis added]
      ——
      The question, “Where do you find City Hall?” — or, rather: Where do you locate those who actually determine where wealth and power accumulate? The answer to this question matters most of all: First, to those who wish to return public government to service of the public; and, Second, to those who like the status quo just fine and will expend fabulous sums of other people’s blood and money to remain anonymous — and therefore impossible to locate and dispossess of all that they have stolen from a plundered world.

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  9. Related to Matt Taibbi’s two articles on Dennis Kucinich (noted above) and the central question he poses: “Where do you find City Hall?, i.e., Who really runs things and gives the orders at the city –> state –> national –> and supra-national/global levels? (pardon the redundancies). Alex Christoforou asks something similar of Alexander Mercouris in a recent video conversation: “Switzerland walks away from EU takeover deal”, The Duran (June 2, 2021).

    [Excerpts from personal transcript]
    . . .
    [15:05] Alex Christoforou: “Who in Europe is pushing this type of authoritarian, we’re-going-to-take-everything type of negotiation? I mean who are the people telling [the Brussels bureaucracy] … ‘We want you guys to take Switzerland and just bleed them dry’? ‘We want you guys to go at them hard and to just take whatever you can from them and no backing down’? There must be [people giving orders like that] … Who is giving such terrible guidance to the EU as they’re negotiating?
    . . .
    Alexander Mercouris gives an extensive, detailed analysis in answer to Mr Christoforou’s question, one which merits reading the entire conversation. But just cutting to the chase:
    . . .
    [18:17] “At the core of this globalist system there are two types of people. Firstly, there are the beneficiaries of it. The people who run these big companies who, to some extent, own these big companies. The so-called billionaire oligarch class who are mistrustful of countries, mistrustful of states, mistrustful of borders; who want to see them all knocked down because that way they can accumulate and centralize wealth to themselves.”
    . . .
    [21:02] “. . . to be very clear, there is a group of people at the core of this system. They do exist. They do sit down and talk to each other. They are of every nationality, including non-Western ones, people from around the world. They do exist and they do have ultimately decisive influence on decision making in places like Brussels. Brussels, in some ways, precisely because the European Union is a supranational entity is the place that suits them best.”

    [21:55] “Even the United States is too much of a state for them to be entirely comfortable there. The European Union, because it is not a state, because it is this amorphous entity is exactly what, I suspect, they would like the world to become.”

    . . . [end transcript excerpts]

    An excellent analysis that adds a macro-perspective to Dennis Kucinich’s micro-perspective. Endemic corruption at the bottom, the top, and at every level in between.

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  10. While sympathetic to the gist of this topic thread, I would reverse the causality and consequence implicit in the title. Instead, I maintain that America does not have a business plan. Rather, a business plan — supranational global corporate oligarchy — has America (among numerous other ostensibly “sovereign” “democratic” “nations”). As Dennis Kucinich profoundly said: a time for redefinition of “the nation state” — what Confucius called “the rectification of names” — has arrived. No more impenetrable jargon masking as “expert knowledge” and “competence,” especially not from the bloated and inept U.S. military and “intelligence” communities.

    An additional treatise from Patrick Lawrence, The Aimless Empire, Consortium News (June 1, 2021) adds to the dismal picture of a corrupt and discredited America too lost at sea to even stop punching more giant holes in its own boat. Mr Lawrence begins with the painfully obvious:

    “Under Biden, the world’s most powerful, most heavily armed, most determinedly righteous nation shows little sign of having any foreign policy at all.”

    “Bitter and frightening realities face us four months into Joe Biden’s presidency. On the domestic side it is a Potemkin village, behind the façades of which lies a slum of unfulfilled promises that are no longer even part of the Washington discourse. That is the bitter part.”

    “The frightening part is this: Biden and the amateurs he has named as statesmen and stateswomen do not have an inconsistent foreign policy, or a miscalculated foreign policy, or a confused foreign policy. Such shortcomings and weaknesses might be repaired. This flummoxed bunch does not have a foreign policy. And the world’s most powerful, most heavily armed, most determinedly righteous nation shows little sign of figuring one out: Readers may perhaps join me in finding this very frightening.” [emphasis added]
    . . .
    “. . .The American empire no longer knows what to do in the world. It is lost in the 21st century forest, ever more alone.”
    . . .
    “. . . It would take a president of far greater vision and conviction than the spineless, chronically deceitful Biden to understand our moment as one of historical import requiring a leader with the imagination and courage to guide our republic into new circumstances and more equitable relationships with others. In fairness to Biden, America has not produced a leader of this sort in I do not care to say how long.”

    “It is occasionally said that the military runs U.S. foreign policy. One gets the point, a grim point, but this is not so, either. The Pentagon has no vision of where this nation is heading or why. Its only policy is to find things to do that justify its bloated bureaucracy and budget. That is not policy; it is something closer to theft. [emphasis added]

    So are we flying blind in the year 2021.”
    . . .

    After a much more detailed critique, Mr Lawrence concludes:

    “Do I describe an incoherent American leader and his lieutenants, who speak gibberish because, having no reply to our moment, the last thing they want is to be understood? I do. Do I write of a powerful nation that has—a different thing—lost its strength and is critically weakened? This, too.

    It is frightening, yes, but our leaders decided in the aftermath of the 2001 events that this is how they will go — not imaginatively or creatively, but inanely.”

    A very thorough analysis, intelligently and stylishly presented.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Two comedians looking at what Orwell called “The Oligarchical Collective” (or “Inner Party”) and what business plans it has for it’s subservient franchise “governments” (or, “Outer Party”) to implement in its interests: Google Blurs Out Map Of Gaza Strip, The Jimmy Dore Show (June 5, 2021)
    . . .
    Jimmy Dore: [reads from announcement shown on screen]:

    Approved organizations such as Palestine Children’s Relief Fund and organizations simply containing the word “Palestine” are being blocked from receiving donations.

    Jimmy Dore: “What do you make of that, Ron?”

    Ron Placone: “I think it’s like all of Big Tech is getting together and they’re [saying]: ‘Hey, how are you suppressing Palestinian rights?’ ‘Well, I am removing content a bunch. What are you doing?’ ‘Hey, we got a lot of account suspensions. We got that going on. What are you doing?’ We’re blocking donations.’ ‘Google, what are you doing?’ ‘Aw, Those images are so blurry.’ ‘Like alright! Mission Accomplished!’”

    [9:27] Jimmy Dore: “This is so Orwellian. Because it’s not just coming from the government. It’s coming from the corporations that control governments. That’s crazy.”

    [9:43] Ron Placone: “Well, it’s a good thing they all report to somebody, though. Oh, wait . . . They report to nobody.”

    Benito Mussolini, who knew a thing or two about Fascism, defined it as “Corporatism,” the seamless merging of gargantuan business and the state. Research Economist Michael Hudson, for his part, thinks of the globally distributed US-dominated empire as a form of Neo-Feudalism: rule by an absentee landlord class of rent-collectors. Bitterly humorous, but not funny at all.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. As you said, Mike, “CorpGov.”

      I recently recorded the original “Rollerball” and have to watch it again. The movie was prescient. And now stand for our corporate anthem.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have the DVD for Rollerball and enjoy periodically watching it, especially James Caan’s performance as Jonathan, although the wife and I think that his performance in Stephen King’s Misery has to count among his best. Then we have Paul Verhoeven’s masterpiece Robocop. “We practically are the military. Who cares if it works?”

        Anyway, it has become confusing of late whether one should stand or kneel in response to demands for herd-like conformity by politicians or corporate executives (now completely interchangeable), whether or not the desired behavior “officially” signifies adulation or fear and revulsion, the “carrot” and “stick” of social control. So I consulted an online dictionary just to make sure that I had got the concepts right and found:

        anthem. noun. (1) A rousing or uplifting song identified with a particular group, body, or cause. A solemn patriotic song officially adopted by a country as an expression of national identity. (2) A musical setting of a religious text to be sung by a choir during a church service, especially in Anglican or Protestant Churches.

        anathema: (1) something or someone that one vehemently dislikes. (2) a formal curse by a pope or a council of the Church, excommunicating a person or denouncing a doctrine.

        Then, this happened:

        Imperial Anathema

        The “Nation” as Anathema,
        or Empire’s Primal Curse –
        Proclaimed by Pope and Emperor –
        Forbids all prose and verse
        That doesn’t preach The Party Line
        From cradle to the hearse:

        Like crimestop, blackwhite, doublethink:
        True “thought” a vapid fizz;
        And Newspeak, ever up-to-date,
        The past now just what “is.”
        Authority infallible,
        The “News” a fake showbiz.

        When George the Second (“Dubya” Bush)
        Inherited the throne
        His “brain” Karl Rove (“Turd Blossom”) crowed
        – Like throwing dogs a bone –
        That “We’re an empire now and when
        We act we make our own …

        Reality.” So much for that
        “Republic” grown too small
        For Empire’s actors who believed
        That Dubya, “standing tall,”
        Would awe with strutting “confidence,”
        And phony southern drawl.

        They had the soldiers, cops, and guards
        Who’d do what they decreed.
        And so they felt themselves secure
        Without the slightest need
        For popular approval of
        A single dirty deed.

        And so the deeds got dirtier.
        In time pure filth prevailed
        Among the “lower” classes by
        The Seizure Class assailed.
        The One Percent got their desire:
        A nation-state that failed.

        “All politics is local” now
        (As once upon a time)
        Sells “democratic” fantasy
        As puppet pantomime,
        Which Oligarchs interpret as
        Their right to legal crime.

        Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2021

        Liked by 1 person

        1. From cradle to the hearse … coincidence… I just saw an old black hearse beginning to rot away at a gas station. Which raises the question: Where do hearses go to die?

          Liked by 1 person

    2. A quick related thought. In CorpGov, everything is for sale. And everything is a commodity. Thus Kucinich had to fight long and hard and at risk to save his municipal power company from being privatized, i.e. made into a commodity for corporate profit.

      Even education is a commodity today. Politicians with few exceptions are products. Of course, way back in the 1930s Smedlley Butler recognized he had fought wars for the corporations of his day. Almost 100 years later, CorpGov has only grown stronger.

      So maybe it’s a business plan for CorpGov, with Corporations very much in the lead and Government as junior partner being both subordinate and subservient.

      Like

        1. Or, according to the “Prosperity Gospel”:

          Driving the Money-Changers INTO the Temple

          Jesus, we hear, had no use for the greedy
          Changers of money: those wolves selling fraud.
          Out of the Temple he drove them, and speedy,
          Cursing them as an affront to his God;
          Preaching, instead, to take care of the needy:
          Doctrine that Christians once found hardly odd.

          Now Pence and Trump claim that Jesus loves money
          Temples for gambling they claim He has built.
          Wall Street, they say, flows with sweet milk and honey:
          Taxpayer bail-outs untroubled by guilt.
          Robbing the working class, they find quite funny,
          Driving the shaft up their butts to the hilt.

          Jesus now preaches “success” for the wealthy.
          “Losers,” The Lord says, should just get the lash.
          Out in the open and no longer stealthy,
          Just grab it all and make off with the stash.
          “Christians” in “Red” States find billionaires healthy:
          Jesus now prays at their Altar of Cash.

          Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2019

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Yes. How did Wall Street become our Garden of Eden? Our version certainly has more snakes than the Biblical one.

            Liked by 2 people

        1. That’s why the September 13, 1976 Kansas City Times published these excerpts, along with so much more.
          It’s taken over 2 Generations, but People are only now beginning to see it unfold,
          “He came to town for the Republican National Convention and will stay until the election in November TO DO GOD’S BIDDING: To tell the World, from Kansas City, this country has been found wanting and its days are numbered […] He gestured toward a gleaming church dome. “The gold dome is the symbol of BABYLON,” he said.” […] He wanted to bring to the Public’s attention an “idea being put out subtly and deceptively” by the government that we have to get prepared for a War with Russia.”

          Like

  12. I’ll never forgive the DNC for smearing Tulsi Gabbard as a Russian asset, then instantly flip-flopping and praising her patriotism when she endorsed Joe Biden.

    My god — the audacity of their mendacity.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. As something of an unsolicited public service — apropos of the present subject matter: namely, Supranational Corporate Imperialist Policies and their implementation by subsidiary minion “governments” (i.e., Courtier/Bureaucratic Plantation Overseers) — I’ve put together some notes from two indispensable little books that I think others might find useful.

    “Notes from Against Empire, by Michael Parenti (San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1995)”

    “Notes from The Face of Imperialism, by Michael Parenti (London: Paradigm Publishers, 2011)

    I’ve also made a copy of a recent interview with research economist Michael Hudson at the Grayzone, “Economics of the new cold war and US ‘super imperialism’ with economist Michael Hudson”, The Grayzone.com (May 12, 2021). Here, I think, Michael Hudson touches upon the need to “redefine the meaning of the Nation-State” that Dennis Kucinich mentioned in Matt Taibbi’s articles (noted above). In this case, we might speak of what Michael Hudson calls the “re-feudalization” of subsidiary minion (i.e., Vassal) “nations” like the United States. Specifically:

    Well the real existential threat isn’t a trade rivalry; it’s not one of technology at all. The existential threat is to the idea of an economy based on completely a rentier system. In today’s world, the banks play the role that landlords played from the feudal epoch through the 19th century [emphasis added].

    And all the classical economics, the whole concept of free markets, from the physiocrats, with their laissez faire to Adam Smith, through John Stuart Mill, the whole of classical economics was to free industrial capitalism from the rentier class, from the landlords, and from banking and the monopolies that banks created in organizing trusts [emphasis added].

    So the US realizes that the economy has been transformed in the last 40 years, since the 1980s, since Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, when Margaret Thatcher said, “There is no alternative.” Of course, there were many alternatives.

    But the United States says, if we can create, if we can turn the “rules-based order” of free markets and classical economics upside down, and say our rules-based order means no government power to regulate, no government progressive taxation, but a flat tax – like we convinced Russia to have, that they still have, by the way – if we can have a rules-based order that backs the rentier class – a hereditary, financial, wealthy 1% of the population – holding the rest of the economy in debt peonage, or reducing them to other forms of dependency in a patron-client relation, then we’ve restored essentially the feudal economy [emphasis added].

    So, three extensive treatments of the present corporate re-feudalization of the United States, Europe, Japan, Australia and Latin America (what George Orwell called “Oceania” where “There is no Law”). Can countervailing associations of alternative systems — say, Russia/China/Iran/etc. — cause Americans and Europeans to ditch the imaginary world they think they live in for an accurate appraisal of the world they actually inhabit? One cannot fight City Hall until one first learns where to locate it and what language best identifies and describes its Board of Directors and their lawyerly legion of factotums.

    Like

    1. We’ve talked about Kabuki theater, Mike, but there’s another type of theater you’ve mentioned as well, where I think the puppeteers are on the stage, clearly in view, but we pretend not to notice them, preferring the show instead of reality. Can’t recall the name of it …

      There are so many puppets we see, like Biden, Harris, AOC, Sanders, and so on, even as the real powers operate in plain sight even as we pretend not to see them (CEOs, heads of major banks, the ultra-rich like Bezos and Musk).

      Interestingly, Bezos and Musk have pretty much taken over NASA. Space is truly the final frontier, but only for the richest. “Star Trek” envisioned a sort of paramilitary future of a well-armed Federation where money was an afterthought, but our space travels are now in the process of being totally subsumed by and subservient to money.

      Space is just another commodity to be privatized, in other words. Soon perhaps we’ll have “off-wprld colonies” like in “Blade Runner” with corporations creating Replicants to serve the richest.

      Like

      1. The type of theater you have in mind goes by the name of “Bunraku,” Bill. A distinctively Japanese form of puppet theater where the puppeteers walk around on stage wearing black cloaks while manipulating the puppets either with their hands, directly, or with wooden poles. The audience simply agrees to suspend all disbelief, refusing to see the puppeteers, while supplying the imaginative context that puts the story together in a meaningful way for them. No people or culture can refuse to see what they do not wish to see better than the Japanese, although contemporary Americans seem determined to match or exceed that capacity when confronted by the bizarre, humiliating spectacle of a thoroughly corrupted, batshit-nuts excuse for a “government.”

        I think the topic of this distinctive imagery came up in 2016 during the “debates” — i.e., joint press conferences — between and among Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. I can’t locate the particular image that I used at the time, but I found another one on the Internet which will do just as well:

        Here, only one puppeteer — whom I associate with Steve Bannon — stands behind the male “Trump” figure, while the female figure has three puppeteers — John Podesta along with former puppets Bill Clinton and Barack Obama — as befits her multiple failed attempts to present herself as something or someone acceptable to the viewing audience (i.e., those “deplorable” swing state voters). A dead NAFTA albatross around the female figure’s neck would have driven home the essential point even better, but that would have meant mixing cultures and their distinctive metaphors. Too much to ask, I guess.

        Anyway, so much for Bunraku Puppet Theater as unintentional — and completely a-cultural — metaphorical illustration.

        More about the theatrical (as opposed to television and film) audience, oligarch puppeteers, and your references to Space in another comment.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Yes! That’s it, Mike. Now if those black-clad puppeteers wore the logos of various corporate sponsors, like so many Nascar drivers, it would be just about perfect. Actually, I’ve always appreciated Nascar for being so blatantly obvious about their corporate sponsors. The thing is, I’m not sure Americans would care anymore if politicians wore the logos of their owners and donors; we’ve already had Senator Boeing and so on.

          Maybe that’s what we need for transparency. Just let corporations, as citizens, run for office. Thus we can all salute President Raytheon as commander-in-chief. Sure would clarify things.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Enormous, colossal, huge, immense, humongous, excessive, tremendous, mammoth, and monstrous industries. Big Ag, Pharma, Oil, Coal, Gas, Water, Media, Telecoms, Sports, Entertainment, etc. I’ve grown weary slinging David’s stone at the eyes of these behemoth’s representatives. They are everywhere and easily identified. I believe that the citizens of the world need to refocus their slings on the actual industry names themselves. Focusing on their corporate actions reveals the damage consistent pressure from these formidable monopolies and the terrible outcomes they produce in society. Teaching well that size does matter. The power of production has been kept from we the people and we accept that we are left to pick through the garbage and waste of uncaring industrious businesses. We must understand that we are far too accepting of the raw deal that comes from the failing products of modern times. Everything is broken, poisoned, and rotting. I stopped taking about the compromised souls that these folks trot out. I tell the folks in the room the truth about the practices and outcomes of these industries. I have found that the supporters of party and politicians, businessmen and capitalists, have very few words when I point out the toxic effects that these industries have left us all to attempt to process. The last part of any encounter should be this…. ask yourself, do you support people who work to keep these destructive practices a part of your future? The seed is planted and hopefully it will blossom into better choices…

            Liked by 2 people

          2. Or, they will get angry and leave… either way; you have the benefit of tending the garden, and slaying the eye of Goliath that exists within the mind of the blind.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. As posted upstream, “He gestured toward a gleaming church dome. “The gold dome is the symbol of BABYLON,” he said.”

            Using secular words, this discussion is covering this from the Revelation of Jesus Christ,

            BABYLON the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.
            For ALL Nations (US & Israel are not exceptional) have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the MERCHANTS of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.
            And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. […]

            And the MERCHANTS of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buys their merchandise any more:
            The MERCHANDISE of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble,
            And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men.
            Revelation 18

            Liked by 1 person

  14. I really have enjoyed asking negative forces the “ help” questions….
    Can you please explain to me…
    How does it help to allow Round Up Ready seeds that are primed with glyphosate and treated with this toxic pesticide before harvest improve the health of … our soil, our bodies, our health system costs?
    How does it help the quality of our drinking water when energy businesses are allowed to dispose of chemicals and waste that are part of the refining process?
    How does it help to allow business to operate unregulated and free of oversight when they are producing goods that come in contact with the infrastructure that services individual homes and real estate?
    How does it help future relationships between the USA and countries we have gone to war against and destroyed their populations and infrastructure?
    How does it help making extreme profits when the goods that are being produced are worthless and end up in the landfills after 1 year of use?
    How does it help burning up valuable resources to keep creating cheap manufactured goods?
    ETC……
    I believe putting people on the “stand” and making them explain how all of America’s policies over the last half century are making it all so great again. I want them to explain and hear it all in their own words. I’ve lost hope in the human side of the equation and want to point out the foolishness of the functions.

    Liked by 1 person

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