Former Assistant Treasury Secretary Dr. Paul Craig Roberts has a dim view of the so-called “economic recovery.” Dr. Roberts contends, “There has been no recovery whatsoever. . . . If you look at the economy realistically, and that means you don’t use their phony numbers, there has been no recovery whatsoever and, in fact, it continues to worsen. We see that the “Labor Force Participation Rate” continues to sink. . . . When you consider the full measure of unemployment . . . we still have an unemployment rate of 23% after 7 years of an alleged recovery? I think this is the first so-called recovery where the labor force fell. Normally, when you have a recovery, people re-enter the labor force and the participation rate rises. . . . How do you have 5% unemployment when half of all 25 year old people have to live at home with their parents? What kind of a “recovery” is that? They say there is no inflation, but everyone that goes shopping knows that is a lie. . . . It’s all just a package of smoke, mirrors and lies.”
Don’t expect this to turn around anytime soon. Dr. Roberts says, “There is no opportunity for the middle-class. It must be shrinking. I would say the U.S. economy is in long-term decline. Rigging the way you measure inflation, rigging the way you measure unemployment, that may fool ordinary people, but that does not fool those of us who look at the numbers.”
On war, Dr. Roberts’ view is dire and goes on to explain,“Everything that previous presidents have done to try to defuse the kind of tensions between nuclear powers that could lead to war, all this has been thrown away by Clinton, George W. Bush and the current White House fool. It’s all due to the Neoconservatives. So, yes, we are in a more dangerous situation than in the worst part of the cold war. Thanks to the Neoconservatives and thanks to the American ‘presstitute’ media with people who lie for a living, we are in more danger than we have ever been. A war could result, and if it doesn’t, then it’s just because Putin has got too much sense. I don’t think Putin is going to absorb these provocations forever, and I don’t think he’s going to put up with any more nonsense in Ukraine. That was a part of Russia longer than the United States has existed. . . .Can you imagine anything more insane and reckless than you go into a part of Russia, that has only been independent for a few years, and overthrow a democratically elected government that is getting along with Russia and stick in an American puppet with all these crazed right-wing Nazi people and cause all this trouble with Russia and tell endless lies about it? What is more reckless and irresponsible? That is the way the United States government is behaving. If you can do things that stupid, you can cause a nuclear war.”
One hundred years ago European civilization, as it had
been known, was ending its life in the Great War, later renamed World War I.
Millions of soldiers ordered by mindless generals into the hostile arms of
barbed wire and machine gun fire had left the armies stalemated in trenches. A
reasonable peace could have been reached, but US President Woodrow Wilson kept
the carnage going by sending fresh American soldiers to try to turn the tide
against Germany in favor of the English and French.
The fresh Amerian machine gun and barbed wire fodder
weakened the German position, and an armistance was agreed. The Germans were
promised no territorial losses and no reparations if they laid down their arms,
which they did only to be betrayed at Versailles. The injustice and stupidity
of the Versailles Treaty produced the German hyperinflation, the collapse of
the Weimar Republic, and the rise of Hitler.
Hitler’s demands that Germany be put back together
from the pieces handed out to France, Belgium, Denmark, Lithuania,
Czechoslovakia, and Poland, comprising 13 percent of Germany’s European
territory and one-tenth of her population, and a repeat of French and British
stupidity that had sired the Great War finished off the remnants of European
civilization in World War II.
The United States benefitted greatly from this death.
The economy of the United States was left untouched by both world wars, but
economies elsewhere were destroyed. This left Washington and the New York banks
the arbiters of the world economy. The US dollar replaced British sterling as
the world reserve currency and became the foundation of US domination in the
second half of the 20th century, a domination limited in its reach only by the
The Soviet collapse in 1991 removed this constraint
from Washington. The result was a burst of American arrogance and hubris that
wiped away in over-reach the leadership power that had been handed to the
United States. Since the Clinton regime, Washington’s wars have eroded American
leadership and replaced stability in the Middle East and North Africa with
Washington moved in the wrong direction both in the
economic and political arenas. In place of diplomacy, Washington used threats
and coercion. “Do as you are told or we will bomb you into the stone age,” as
Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage told President Musharraf of
Pakistan. Not content to bully weak countries, Washington threatens poweful
countries such as Russia, China, and Iran with economic sanctions and military
actions. Consequently, much of the non-Western world is abandoning the US
dollar as world currency, and a number of countries are organizing a payments
system, World Bank, and IMF of their own. Some NATO members are rethinking
their membership in an organization that Washington is herding into conflict with
China’s unexpectedly rapid rise to power owes much to
the greed of American capitalism. Pushed by Wall Street and the lure of
“performance bonuses,” US corporate executives brought a halt to rising US
living standards by sending high productivity, high value-added jobs abroad
where comparable work is paid less. With the jobs went the technology and
business knowhow. American capability was given to China. Apple Computer, for
example, has not only offshored the jobs but also outsourced its production.
Apple does not own the Chinese factories that produce its products.
The savings in US labor costs became corporate
profits, executive renumeration, and shareholder capital gains. One consequence
was the worsening of the US income distribution and the concentration of income
and wealth in few hands. A middle class democracy was transformed into an
oligarchy. As former President Jimmy Carter recently said, the US is no longer
a democracy; it is an oligarchy.
In exchange for short-term profits and in order to
avoid Wall Street threats of takeovers, capitalists gave away the American
economy. As manufacturing and tradeable professional skill jobs flowed out of
America, real family incomes ceased to grow and declined. The US labor force
participation rate fell even as economic recovery was proclaimed. Job gains
were limited to lowly paid domestic services, such as retail clerks,
waitresses, and bartenders, and part-time jobs replaced full-time jobs. Young
people entering the work force find it increasingly difficult to establish an
independent existance, with 50 percent of 25-year old Americans living at home
In an economy driven by consumer and investment
spending, the absence of growth in real consumer income means an economy
without economic growth. Led by Alan Greenspan, the Federal Reserve in the
first years of the 21st century substituted a growth in consumer debt for the
missing growth in consumer income in order to keep the economy moving. This
could only be a short-term palliative, because the growth of consumer debt is
limited by the growth of consumer income.
Another serious mistake was the repeal of financial
regulation that had made capitalism functional. The New York Banks were behind
this egregious error, and they used their bought-and-paid-for Texas US Senator,
whom they rewarded with a 7-figure salary and bank vice chairmanship to open
the floodgates to amazing debt leverage and financial fraud with the repeal of
The repeal of Glass-Steagall destroyed the separation
of commercial from investment banking. One result was the concentration of
banking. Five mega-banks now dominate the American financial scene. Another
result was the power that the mega-banks gained over the government of the
United States. Today the US Treasury and the Federal Reserve serve only the
interests of the mega-banks.
In the United States savers have had no interest on
their savings in eight years. Those who saved for their retirement in order to
make paltry Social Security benefits liveable have had to draw down their
capital, leaving less inheritance for hard-pressed sons, grandsons, daughters
Washington’s financial policy is forcing families to
gradually extinguish themselves. This is “freedom and democracy “ America
Among the capitalist themselves and their shills among
the libertarian ideologues, who are correct about the abuse of government power
but less concerned with the abuse of private power, the capitalist greed that
is destroying families and the economy is regarded as the road to progress. By
distrusting government regulators of private misbehavior, libertarians provided
the cover for the repeal of the financial regulation that made American
capitalism functional. Today dysfunctional capitalism rules, thanks to greed
and libertarian ideology.
With the demise of the American middle class, which
becomes more obvious each day as another ladder of upward mobility is
dismantled, the United States becomes a bipolar country consisting of the rich
and the poor. The most obvious conclusion is that the failure of American
political ledership means instability, leading to a conflict between the
haves—the one percent—and the dispossessed—the 99 percent.
The failure of leadership in the United States is not
limited to the political arena but is across the board. The time horizon
operating in American institutions is very short term. Just as US manufacturers
have harmed US demand for their products by moving abroad American jobs and the
consumer income associated with the jobs, university administrations are
destroying universities. As much as 75 percent of university budgets is devoted
to administration. There is a proliferation of provosts, assistant provosts,
deans, assistant deans, and czars for every designated infraction of political
Tenure-track jobs, the bedrock of academic freedom,
are disappearing as university administrators turn to adjuncts to teach courses
for a few thousand dollars. The decline in tenure-track jobs heralds a decline
in enrollments in Ph.D. programs. University enrollments overall are likely to
decline. The university experience is eroding at the same time that the
financial return to a university education is eroding. Increasingly students
graduate into an employment environment that does not produce sufficient income
to service their student loans or to form independent households.
Increasingly university research is funded by the
Defense Department and by commercial interests and serves those interests.
Universities are losing their role as sources of societal critics and
reformers. Truth itself is becoming commercialized.
The banking system, which formerly financed business,
is increasingly focused on converting as much of the economy as possible into
leveraged debt instruments. Even consumer spending is reduced with high credit
card interest rate charges. Indebtedness is rising faster than the real
production in the economy.
Historically, capitalism was justified on the grounds
that it guaranteed the efficient use of society’s resources. Profits were a
sign that resources were being used to maximize social welfare, and losses were
a sign of inefficient resource use, which was corrected by the firm going out
of business. This is no longer the case when the economic policy of a counry
serves to protect financial institutions that are “too big to fail” and when
profits reflect the relocation abroad of US GDP as a result of jobs offshoring.
Clearly, American capitalism no longer serves society, and the worsening
distribution of income and wealth prove it.
None of these serious problems will be addressed by
the presidential candidates, and no party’s platform will consist of a rescue
plan for America. Unbridled greed, short-term in nature, will continue to drive
America into the ground.
Below is a conversation that is unlike any that I have heard before. When preparing for interviews Dave Kranzler and I usually go over what we are going to discuss, how to get the show started and how we will hand off the conversation. It’s a good formula that has served us well. We are very, very grateful Dr. Roberts had other ideas.
Our world, as many of you know, is experiencing massive, unprecedented change at an ever increasing pace. Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, is not only one of the foremost economist in the world, but he also has one of the world’s most respected voices covering the geopolitical landscape.
The American people are asleep at the wheel. The blame is not totally their’s, but they do bare the brunt of the blame. The mainstream media does not report what is happening within our economy or the geopolitical arena, unless they can spew on and on about the endless rainbows, unicorns and how “America is the greatest and Putin is the devil.” No depth of coverage, nothing of real value reported, so the American people are left ignorant and wanting for truth. When you work 2 or more part time jobs, are struggling with keeping a roof over your head and the kids need new shoes, it becomes a challenge to seek the truth even though you know the “report” Brian Williams just delivered is a fabricated piece of fantasy. There is almost no truth to be found in the American mainstream media.
The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 gave birth to a dangerous American ideology called neoconservativism. The Soviet Union had served as a constraint on US unilateral action. With the removal of this constraint on Washington, neoconservatives declared their agenda of US world hegemony. America was now the “sole superpower,” the “unipower,” that could act without restraint anywhere in the world.
The Washington Post neoconservative journalist Charles Krauthammer summed up the “new reality” as follows:
“We have overwheming global power. We are history’s designated custodians of the international system. When the Soviet Union fell, something new was born, something utterly new–a unipolar world dominated by a single superpower unchecked by any rival and with decisive reach in every corner of the globe. This is a stagering new development in history, not seen since the fall of Rome. Even Rome was no model for what America is today.”
The staggering unipolar power that history has given to Washington has to be protected at all costs. In 1992 top Pentagon official Undersecretary Paul Wolfowitz penned the Wolfowitz Doctrine, which became the basis for Washington’s foreign policy.
The Wolfowitz Doctrine states that the “first objective” of American foreign and military policy is “to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat [to US unilateral action] on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power.” (A “hostile power” is a country sufficiently strong to have a foreign policy independent from Washington’s.)
The unilateral assertion of American power begin in ernest during the Clinton regime with the interventions in Yugoslavia, Serbia, Kosovo, and the no-fly zone imposed on Iraq. In 1997 the neoconservatives penned their “Project for a New American Century.” In 1998, three years prior to 9/11, the neoconservatives sent a letter to President Clinton calling for regime change in Iraq and “the removal of Saddam Hussein from power.” Neoconservatives set out their program for removing seven governments in five years.
Presidents, Prime Ministers, Congressmen, Generals, Soldiers and Police ADMIT to False Flag Terror
In the following instances, officials in the government which carried out the attack (or seriously proposed an attack) admit to it, either orally, in writing, or through photographs or videos:
(1) Japanese troops set off a small explosion on a train track in 1931, and falsely blamed it on China in order to justify an invasion of Manchuria.
This is known as the “Mukden Incident” or the “Manchurian Incident”. The Tokyo International Military Tribunal found: “Several of the participators in the plan, including Hashimoto [a high-ranking Japanese army officer], have on various occasionsadmitted their part in the plot and have stated that the object of the ‘Incident’ was to afford an excuse for the occupation of Manchuria by the Kwantung Army ….” And see this.
(2) A major with the Nazi SS admitted at the Nuremberg trials that – under orders from the chief of the Gestapo – he and some other Nazi operatives faked attacks on their own people and resources which they blamed on the Poles, to justify the invasion of Poland.
(3) Nazi general Franz Halder also testified at the Nuremberg trials that Nazi leader Hermann Goering admitted to setting fire to the German parliament building in 1933, and then falsely blaming the communists for the arson.
(4) Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev admitted in writing that the Soviet Union’s Red Army shelled the Russian village of Mainila in 1939 – while blaming the attack on Finland – as a basis for launching the “Winter War” against Finland. Russian president Boris Yeltsin agreed that Russia had been the aggressor in the Winter War.