Tuesday, 22 March 2005

Soma Nation

I was watching something on TV about the rise and Fall of the British Empire and the thing which struck me the most was that for a lot of what was said it would have been possible to switch "British" with "American" and apply the statement to what's happening in the world today. We're watching an the death of the New American Empire and the Empire doesn't even realise it! Or maybe they do and that's where all this war is coming from.

A Threat Greater Than Terrorism

by Paul Craig Roberts


Delusion has settled over America. Washington cannot tell fact from fantasy. Neither can sycophantic media nor nothink economists.

The Bush administration is the first government in history to initiate a war based entirely on fantasy--fantasy about nonexistent "weapons of mass destruction," fantasy about nonexistent "terrorist links," fantasy about "liberating" a people from their culture, fantasy about a "cakewalk" invasion, fantasy about America's omnipotence.

Reality has yet to penetrate the Oval Office or America's "red state" consciousness. The gratuitous invasion of Iraq, the torture and the war crimes have made America despised the world over. Our once formidable alliances are shattered.

The Muslim world, which perceives America as Israel's enabler of Palestine's oppression, has uniformly turned against us.

$300 billion--red ink to the last cent--has been wasted in a pointless war and occupation that has emboldened Islamic revolutionaries, who will be more successful than the US in changing the face of the Middle East.

Bush's invasion of Iraq has proved the limits of America's "hegemonic" military power: Eight heavily armored high tech US divisions are tied down by a few thousand lightly armed insurgents who control most of the roads and many towns and cities.

Any Iraqi collaborator with the US occupation who is foolish enough to leave the heavily fortified "Green Zone" is shot down or blown up in the streets.

Such an outcome is proclaimed a "success" by the White House, Republican politicians and a cheerleading media.

The reality is that an ignorant and blundering Bush administration has created a Shi'ite crescent from Iran to Lebanon that is revolutionizing the Middle East. The reality will not penetrate the Bush administration. Reality contradicts Bush fantasy and is "against us." Facts that don't support Bush fantasy are "liberal" and "anti-American." Truth is dismissed as anti-Bush propaganda.

It is America that has undergone regime change. The Bush administration constitutes a Jacobin revolution. Its fanatics have declared world war on political diversity. The first victim of Bush's "war on terror" is the Bill of Rights. In its place we have an incipient police state.

One might easily conclude that Bush is first among the deluded, but the more one observes economists' romance with outsourcing, the more one wonders if economists are not the most deluded of all.

Outsourcing converts domestic supplied goods and services into imports. It divorces Americans from the incomes and careers associated with the production of the goods and services that Americans consume.

That divorce is highly detrimental for Americans. As foreign labor is substituted for US labor in the production of tradable goods and services, the displaced US work force seeks employment in domestic services that cannot be outsourced. This increases the supply of labor, thus depressing wages, in those labor markets already impacted by the entry of high rates of legal and illegal immigration.

Full story...

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