Underneath the bluster of a Trump administration that still acts like the United States is the world hegemon, the ruling class is working to pragmatically respond to the loss of America’s status as a dominant power. In 2017 the Pentagon put out a report that admitted American global influence is rapidly declining, and now that the U.S. is sure to soon lose its superpower status, the corporatocracy has to address this issue.
I have never heard it louder than I did this morning.
The Interstate highway, I-80, that is, two miles or so north of my abode in Iowa City.
It’s a highway to Hell in the heartland of the deranged Superpower that leads the world in per-capita Greenhouse Gassing.
In 2014, the CIA-tied media outlet the Washington Post published an article titled “In the long run, wars make us safer and richer.” Its author Ian Morris reasoned that wars have been necessary to carry out what it called the “civilizing process,” wherein the European empires have grown through conquest and the United States has been created through the seizing of indigenous lands. Its argument was racist and biased in favor of Western capitalist interests, and this was the point. It acknowledged that the wars which brought the U.S. empire to power, and which the U.S. empire continues to wage, are good for “us”—the people in the imperial core who benefit from imperialist wars.
Consumer society has tried to legitimize itself by making people believe that it represents a sustainable way of living. For those in the First World, all the evidence that a meltdown is coming—the deterioration of the climate, the decline of the biosphere, the diminishing of available resources—has usually existed outside of immediate view. Commercialism and the mass media, which have gained an unprecedented presence in our lives through the digital revolution, have distracted us from these realities while the machine of global capital has continued to run.
David Swanson was to speak at a conference in Florence, Italy, on April 25, 2020. The conference became a video instead. Below is the video and text of Swanson’s portion. As soon as we receive the video or text of the whole, in Italian or English, we will post it at worldbeyondwar.org. The video aired on April 25 on PandoraTV and on ByoBlu. Details on the full conference are here.
The United States and the other core imperialist countries haven’t had socialist revolutions because the masses within them have been kept complacent. They’ve directly or indirectly benefited from the exploitation of colonized peoples, enjoying relative economic advantages despite their being subordinate to the capitalist class. Even as inequality has increased in the last generation or so, this has let the system keep them from taking action. They’ve been told that they need to be loyal to their country, that they can get ahead if they try, that capitalism gives them a better lifestyle than socialism would.
Updated: May 30, 2020; Youtube removed the video. Replaced video.
Michael Moore on Apr 21, 2020
Michael Moore presents Planet of the Humans, a documentary that dares to say what no one else will this Earth Day — that we are losing the battle to stop climate change on planet earth because we are following leaders who have taken us down the wrong road — selling out the green movement to wealthy interests and corporate America. This film is the wake-up call to the reality we are afraid to face: that in the midst of a human-caused extinction event, the environmental movement’s answer is to push for techno-fixes and band-aids. It’s too little, too late.
with Chris Hedges
RT America on Mar 27, 2020
The economic impact of the coronavirus has resulted in 3.3 million Americans signing up for unemployment benefits last week alone. Several states have responded by placing moratoriums on evictions and utility shutoffs. But some tenants say that this is not enough and are calling for a state-wide rent strike. Pulitzer-winning journalist and “On Contact” host Chris Hedges weighs in.
“Of the top ten largest weapon manufacturers in the world, the first five companies at the top of the list are US companies: Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Raytheon, and General Dynamics.” — Will Griffin
Haruki Murakami said that “Everyone, deep in their hearts, is waiting for the end of the world to come.” It’s with this self-awareness of my attraction to the apocalypse that I confront the converging crises of our era. These crises point towards an outcome that’s not as dire as the literal end of the world, but that still conjures the sense of fascinated suspense which Murakami described.
Five years ago, an investigation from InsideClimate News confirmed what one might have intuitively suspected: that the leaders of Exxon Mobil were well aware of the science of global warming before it became a public issue. The investigation showed that as far back as the 1970s, Exxon had engaged in research that determined carbon dioxide was heating up the planet, corroborating observations about the effects of fossil fuels on the climate that scientists had been making since the 1890s.