The Illusion of Control, Part Two, by Robert Gore

The coming chaos

Part One

The US government has gone all in on taxation, redistribution, spending, expansion of its power, ever more intrusive laws and regulations, the increasing curtailment of liberty, debt funding, and debt-based “money” it and the Federal Reserve produce at will. The coercion and fraud implicit in these measures have been poisons on American political culture and are destroying the US economy and way of life.

Control, illusory or otherwise, requires resources. Government produces nothing, so the resources must be taken or borrowed. The economic grave it’s digging for itself is the greatest threat to the US government’s control. Taxation discourages production. Regulation throws sand in the economy’s gears and can stop it entirely. Steadily mounting debt and its consequent debt service exact an increasing toll. Most US debt funds consumption, which generates no offsetting return, not production, which potentially does.

Monetary flim-flam—the central bank using its created-at-will debt to buy the government’s created-at-will debt—is embraced in some particularly deluded quarters as a panacea, but it’s really a perpetual motion snare. Nothing is created or produced, so it’s tempting to say the central bank-government fiat debt exchanges have the same economic effect as two people exchanging twenty-dollar bills.

Tempting, but wrong, because the $20 exchange is harmless, while the central bank-government shell game produces identifiable, substantial financial and economic harms. Central bank machinations drive down interest rates—now into negative territory across much of the developed world—encouraging borrowing and discouraging saving, the foundation of future growth and progress. They keep zombie companies alive far past there free market sell-by dates. Negative interest rates are the ultimate absurdity—savers paying borrowers to lend them money!

Of course, few actual savers bite on this one, it’s mostly speculators hoping an absurd situation will become even more absurd. Debt so saturates the planet that even when borrowers are paid to borrow, the demand for funds is insufficient to promote the economic growth that cheap, free, or remunerative borrowing is supposed to promote.

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Trend growth rates around the world are on a downward path, and in Japan and Europe, where debt and central bank giveaways have become ingrained features of the economy, growth is zero or less. The US hasn’t had 3 percent growth since the George W. Bush administration, and average growth under Trump, not withstanding the stock market he so frequently touts, has been about what it was under Obama. The disconnect between the real economy and financial markets is yet another consequence of monetary flim-flam and it will prove disastrous.

How do you take any government’s growth figures seriously when no provision is made for the debt that was used to fund that growth? If the US government borrows close a trillion dollars this year and growth of the entire economy amounts to $600 billion, has there been any growth? The question is not academic; those figures are pretty close to where borrowing and growth (best case) will come in.

Time and compounding interest, or a bear market in bonds (a bull market in interest rates), will blow mile-wide holes in the budgets of governments that are already heavily in debt, running continuous deficits, and facing the demands of aging populations. The illusory control bubble, especially in the US, may be pricked by the realization that it’s unaffordable as debt service and expanding “entitlement” spending crowd out the rest of the government’s budget and lenders demand higher interest rates.

One item won’t be crowded out: repression, or police state, spending, which will be rightly regarded as essential by the powers that be to maintain their power. Despite an extensive propaganda effort and governments’ capture of the mainstream media, expanding government at both national and international levels—under the guise of globalism—is encountering substantial resistance. Governments’ responses have been the usual: more propaganda, lies, and repression.

Fortunately, governments have not yet wholly tamed the internet, although they’ve coopted most of its technology providers and the social media giants. Lies have been repeatedly exposed, recently those propagated during the Skripal affair and Brexit in Britain, and the Russiagate and now the Ukraine-related attempted coups in the US. The credibility of the mainstream media and its standing with the public have never been lower.

Such exposure helps fuel a resistance of unknown size, to date most visibly manifested in Brexit, Trump’s election, and the Yellow Vest movement in France. The US poses a particular challenge for police statists because much of the resistance can shoot back.

When the violence comes—and it will come—the military and militarized police forces will face domestic insurgents who are better armed, trained, supplied, coordinated, and technologically proficient than the foreign insurgents the military has heretofore been unable to defeat. Among the insurgents will be hackers proficient in shutting down computer and communication systems, or perhaps switching off the poorly protected electric grid. The many hacks of government and business systems, now almost daily, indicate they will have little trouble throwing spikes on the information superhighway, partially or totally disrupting government and corporate computer, communications, and power systems. The havoc insurgents can potentially wreak is limited only by their imaginations.

A police state bent on repressing, incarcerating, torturing, or executing anyone who steps out of line will invariably suppress many of its most productive people. That destroys economic productivity, which is why the relatively brief interludes of human peace and prosperity coincide with the times when humans were most free. Police state economies are stagnant, at best, and eventually decay, wither, and die. (Watch the Chinese economic “miracle” fade as the Chinese government fully implements its social credit system and other repressive measures.)

The elimination of incentives, free markets, and iconoclastic entrepreneurialism leaves police states with little for their sustenance. A dying economy yields dwindling tax revenues, and the purchasing power of the government’s and central bank’s debts—pieces of paper and computer entries—head towards their intrinsic value, worthlessness.

When the government can only pay the military and police in worthless scrip, the end is nigh. They will be waging violence on their fellow citizens, including friends and relatives, and won’t be getting paid for it. With the empire crumbling, it may well be the last war the praetorians ever fight. Some will have paralyzing qualms, balk, or quit and join the resistance. Some will go free lance, joining other criminals terrorizing the populace. Contrary to police statists’ pipe dreams, chaos, not their illusions of enforced order, will reign supreme.

A historical epoch draws to a close. Since the end of the Medieval Ages, order, for better or worse, has been imposed by governments, culminating in the totalitarian governments of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. They failed or will fail because failure is the inevitable outcome for order imposed by violence. The decentralization inherent in personal computing, cell phones, the internet, 3D printing, encryption, cryptocurrencies, drones, IEDs, alternative medicines, alternative media, alternative farming, widespread private ownership of firearms, secession movements, and a host of other innovations and features of modern life are straining centralized systems past their breaking points.

The coming age will be one of decentralization, dissolution, and chaos. Many political arrangements, possibly including the US as a single nation, will not survive. The rulers, commanders, controllers, police statists, and everyone else bent on forcing others to comply with their dictates will resist to the bitter end. That there will be chaos is perhaps the only clear prediction that can be made about the future; the contours of chaos are notoriously hard to predict.

27 responses to “The Illusion of Control, Part Two, by Robert Gore

  1. “Among the insurgents will be hackers proficient in shutting down computer and communication systems…”
    Regarding the coming “broke-down age”,I have read many articles about how many folks own guns, how many guns are out there, and rounds of ammo–but I have not read one article focusing on the power of “hackers”
    as domestic antistate disrupters.<–I will be paying more attention. Powerful food for thought articles.


    • neilmdunn,
      It’s already happening, in a way, regarding the power of hackers. There have been several city governments recently locked out of their networks by ransomware; I think Baltimore was the most recent big-name casualty. And individuals are no better, remember that John Podesta’s account was compromised by a spear phishing attack; a fake gmail login.


  2. And the takeaway is….? Buy more ammo, be able to bug out and have the wherewithal to live somewhere else for at least 3 months.


  3. Awesome. Thoughtful and well-written. I could be your unpaid bodyguard. 🙂


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  5. It’s scary…or is it?
    It’s time for the USA to “pay for it’s sins”, but not in a religious sense.
    For way too long our country’s foreign diplomacy was this: Do what we want and Accept our bribe (foreign aid), or be cruise misled/Droned.
    I wish I had a time and date to tell you when the US Dollar will collapse. I don’t. But I think soon.

    We have it coming.

    Liked by 1 person

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  8. The”first civil war” Whom did it serve?
    Will another be much different? Who does it serve, when we’ve seen and read their plans for depopulation?
    We, it would seem have been set on a course to eat our own. Who does it serve?
    Is this not cannibalism? Each one at each others throats because of the lies throughout generations.


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  10. Plan for Laughs

    Is the U.S. at Greece levels yet regarding the deficit?
    Too bad so sad about that glorious people’s collective utopia stupid human earth monkeys.


  11. Robert…..good to see an article by you; been a long time for me.
    After this reading, I do want to suggest something, and I will assume everything you stated is correct.
    Do not get disillusioned or negative. It is so easy to be infected by the fear-mongering and the pervasive doom-and-gloom that surrounds us.
    FEAR SELLS !!!!
    Am a fan.


  12. One thing I am doubtful about what you said: one of the manifestations of amorphous resistance is the election of Trump. I think Trump is a dyed-in-the-wool statist who made his name and living acting within the strictures of the establishment, fleecing others when he felt he could get away with it. Maybe the ex-bondholders of his bankrupt entities, the casinos are better judge of this fellow.


    • ma sh

      I believe the election of Trump, based in part on some of his rhetoric that appeared to go against existing statist narratives, is a manifestation of the resistance, but that doesn’t necessarily make Trump part of that resistance. Judging by his actions since taking office, I’m inclined to your belief that Trump is “a dyed-in-the-wool statist.” Brandon Smith at alt-market frequently makes the argument that Trump is a globalist front man.


  13. Trump Impeachment is All About Failing Central Banks

    Harley Schlanger rejoins Sarah Westall to discuss the globalist and central banker actions that are now taking place since their annual meeting last month.

    The Federal Reserve has been pumping $75 billion dollars a day into the economy since September 15th…

    and will continue to do this until October 10th or later. We discuss what these actions really mean and connect the dots on these actions to the real economy, the impeachment of President Donald Trump, the Green New Deal, and other crazy developments we are witnessing every day. He also reiterates the point that we have to have courage and believe that we can turn this around. As a group, we have the power. This is an important interview, please share this with as many people as you can.


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  16. I believe that TPTB will be rudely awakened by the fact that the majority of the military WILL NOT turn its guns on those it took an oath to protect because a politician or a group thereof tells it to. It’ll be more likely to turn its guns on whoever gave it the order…


  17. Yes, our militarized police will face an enemy larger and more sophisticated than the goat herders of the Afghan wastelands. There is an additional benefit in that the US government will finally “reap the whirlwind” of its decades of poor foreign policy. IMHO most of the countries hostile to the US…will back the Citizenry in its fight against the true oppressors. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend”…and it wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility for countries like Russia, Iran, North Korea and a host of others to supply much welcome material aid, hacking, intelligence etc. etc. Such a conflict between the US Government and the Citizenry would indeed provide a “distraction” for any overseas powers to make moves like land grabs while Uncle Sam’s resources are too occupied elsewhere. Lastly, an interesting statistic: US Citizens outnumber police 330-to-1. Which group do you want to be counted among?


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  20. Pingback: Prepping update. It's 2020 and you have another three more years before the peak disruption climax.

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