The Decline and Fall of the American Empire

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    • #401546
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 10,623

      https://www.counterpunch.org/2021/02/05/the-decline-and-fall-of-the-american-empire/

      In the full flowering of the American empire after the Second World War, its leaders understood the skill and subtlety required to exercise imperial power in a post-colonial world. No country fighting for independence from the U.K. or France was going to welcome imperial invaders from America. So America’s leaders developed a system of neocolonialism through which they exercised overarching imperial sovereignty over much of the world, while scrupulously avoiding terms like “empire” or “imperialism” that would undermine their post-colonial credentials.

      It was left to critics like President Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana to seriously examine the imperial control that wealthy countries still exercised over nominally independent post-colonial countries like his. In his book, Neo-Colonialism: the Last Stage of Imperialism, Nkrumah condemned neocolonialism as “the worst form of imperialism.” “For those who practice it,” he wrote, “it means power without responsibility, and for those who suffer from it, it means exploitation without redress.”

      So post-World War Two Americans grew up in carefully crafted ignorance of the very fact of American empire, and the myths woven to disguise it provide fertile soil for today’s political divisions and disintegration. Trump’s “Make America Great Again” and Biden’s promise to “restore American leadership” are both appeals to nostalgia for the fruits of American empire.

      China and the EU have become the major trading partners of most countries in the world. The United States is still a regional economic power, but even in South America, most countries now trade more with China. America’s militarism has accelerated these trends by squandering our resources on weapons and wars, while China and the EU have invested in peaceful economic development and 21st century infrastructure.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #401552
      Ohio Barbarian
      Moderator
      • Total Posts: 22,039

      .

      It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.--Eugene Debs

      You can jail a revolutionary, but you can't jail the revolution.--Fred Hampton

    • #401557
      Voltairine
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      • Total Posts: 2,213

      USA has huge trade deficit and hyperinflation bubble in its financial casino system, which has detached from real economy. EU, Russia and China have trade surplus. The latter are dedollarizing their trade and the share of dollar nominated transactions is falling. Also Bitcoin is competing for status of global reserve currency.

      Let the downfall be swift but soft.

      Aloha!

      • #401567
        GZeusH
        Participant
        • Total Posts: 4,502

        but very seldom soft.

        Corporate America consists of totalitarian entities laser-focused on short-term greed.

        My pronouns: vuestra merced, monsieur, господин, pana Bogu, πανίσχυρος Δίας

        • #401578
          Voltairine
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          • Total Posts: 2,213

          The more softer and fluffier the landing will be, the more people wake up and get out of the left-vs-right Hate Inc. echo chambers of ideological possession, and unite for most basic common ground: Peace. Bottom unity against the class war by the top. Libertarian unity against authoritarians left and right. Common ground of peace and respectful dialogue. Mutual care. Those things start and come from each unique human being, not from frustration and outraged blame games of how others should be and behave.

          Aloha!

          • #401583
            Ohio Barbarian
            Moderator
            • Total Posts: 22,039

            Their resistance to any kind of authority usually makes organization and discipline, or any kind of loyalty to a goal greater than themselves, and that nearly always leads to defeat.

            It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.--Eugene Debs

            You can jail a revolutionary, but you can't jail the revolution.--Fred Hampton

            • #401607
              Voltairine
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              • Total Posts: 2,213

              Obviously, libertarian and authoritarian unity mean very different things, former is voluntary consensus, latter subservient obedience. Haudenosaunee Great Law of Peace is a good example of libertarian unity and highly evolved native social science, which US tried to imitate to some extent, but failed; and which inspired what we know today as Marxism and Anarchism:

              Uniting for the common ground of Peace is the primary precondition of any other consensus. BLM local chapters, Antifa, Boogaloo etc. with their armed militia are uniting for the common ground of peace. They don’t want to fight each other and ignite bloody civil war of everybody against everybody, but of course they don’t give up their self-defense against aggression from state or other authoritarian and aggressive militia. If and when banksters start evicting people from their homes big way, you need all the unity and solidarity you can find to defend fellow people and their homes against that deadly aggression by the fascist state. You need common ground of peace to start to organize better networks of mutual aid to survive and to replace the collapsing state structures.

              It doesn’t really matter much what you think ideologically and theoretically about authoritarianism vs. libertarianism. Representative political process is kaputt, USA is a deeply failed state and getting only worse and very real shit is going on on the ground. Nothing is more vital than libertarian unity of 1) agreeing not to shoot each other and 2) then seeking more common ground and consensus building on the stuff that people can agree on.

              Meanwhile, the authoritarians in their partisan etc. echo chambers of ideological possession only pour more oil to the flames with their mutually demonizing blame games and preaching hate and suppressing all constructive dialogue. I know that’s not your way and not what you want, Ohio. You are a man of peace, compassion and dignity.

              Aloha!

              • #401618
                Ohio Barbarian
                Moderator
                • Total Posts: 22,039

                If it’s also libertarian unity, so much the better. Either way, it is far preferable to the alternative, I’ll grant you that.

                The thing is, I’m a cynic. There are too many historical examples where blood has been shed to allow me to be anything else on the subject of rapid revolutionary change, which is coming, one way or the other and whether we like it or not.

                It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.--Eugene Debs

                You can jail a revolutionary, but you can't jail the revolution.--Fred Hampton

                • #401630
                  Voltairine
                  Participant
                  • Total Posts: 2,213

                  Instead of “working class” I prefer to talk about caring classes. “Working class” is capitalist concept and phenomenon, closely tied with fetish of productionism, and ‘labor theory of value’ is pretty meaningless in the age of automated robot factories. Most work is care work, social and material maintenance, and only little part of care is commodified – and when commodified, generally very poorly compared to those of the ruling class who don’t care about us, who don’t recognize and respect our common humanity but treat us as numbers, administrative units of top down bureaucracy based on metaphysical quantification.

                  Aloha!

      • #401571
        jwirr
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        • Total Posts: 1,934
    • #401597
      Passionate Progressive
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      • Total Posts: 3,844

      The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.....Martin Luther King '63

      It takes all the technical proficiency our system can provide to make up for the woeful lack of popular support and political savvy of most of the regimes that the West has thus far sought to prop up.........Bernard Fall

    • #401608
      djean111
      Participant
      • Total Posts: 6,704

      Looting American citizens, looting what it can of the rest of the world, and using the MIC to accomplish that.  IMO, etc.

      America is not a country, it's just a business. (Brad Pitt, Killing Them Softly)

      Everything I post is just my opinion, and, honestly, I would love to be wrong.

      • #401629
        GZeusH
        Participant
        • Total Posts: 4,502

        That would be when the rich get looted and their palaces get turned over to house the homeless.  A la Russia 1917.

        Corporate America consists of totalitarian entities laser-focused on short-term greed.

        My pronouns: vuestra merced, monsieur, господин, pana Bogu, πανίσχυρος Δίας

    • #401627
      sadoldgirl
      Participant
      • Total Posts: 1,439

      Indeed I heard that in 2026 or 7 China will have surpassed the

      US economically. The problem with capitalism comes from the

      extreme importance of the individual, setting one up against

      each other in competition. That was a part of the US from the

      beginning on. The people united only when fear was created

      and then war. By now it is obvious to many of us that this is

      a very limiting and destructive construct of a society, which

      by its rules creates “losers and winners”. It is clear that when

      there are more “losers” than “winners” the society will break

      down eventually.

      • #401633
        Voltairine
        Participant
        • Total Posts: 2,213

        Aye, win-lose games -> lose-lose games. So, how to improve our win-win games?

        Also, as for the word-concept ‘individual’, there are attempts to reinterpret the meaning as sovereign unique human being, which is the good direction, but the historical core meaning is separate and countable unit of quantitative top down administration. As unique as Agent Smith, and the historical and sociopsychological origin of the concept is the colonizing structure of Western class society together with religion of metaphysical materialism, which denies our fundamental spiritual connection and separates and alienates people into atomistic units of quantifiable stuff.

        Aloha!

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