Category Archives: Capitalism

Doug Casey on the Rapid Cultural Decline and What Comes Next

Western Civilization and the ideas that truly made America exceptional are under full frontal intellectual and political assault. From Doug Casey at internationalman.com:

International Man: Nations in decline often experience cultural degeneracy. We saw that in the Roman Empire and Weimar Germany, for example.

Today, in the US, we see increasing signs of cultural degeneracy in Hollywood, advertisements, academia, science, corporations, politics, and other areas of life.

What is your take?

Doug Casey: There have been a number of major turning points throughout history. Rome in the third century was one of them. It was a period of economic, political, and military chaos, aggravated by the social chaos accompanying the rise of Christianity. These things set the stage for the complete collapse of the old civilization in the West with the barbarian invasions after Adrianople in 378.

The Renaissance changed the nature of life in Western Europe starting in the 15th century, as did the Enlightenment in the 18th century. And, most important, in many ways, the Industrial Revolution overturned the pre-existing economic order starting in the early 19th century.

Whenever the public was in a frenzy about something or other, my friend Herman Kahn (look him up) liked to quip, “There are only two important things that have happened since the dawn of history—and this isn’t one of them.” He was referring to the Agricultural Revolution around 5000 years ago and the Industrial Revolution. It’s good to keep things in perspective…

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The Coming Global Fracture as Economic Orders Clash, by Michael Hudson

It’s a battle between state-directed economic philosophies. From Michael Hudson at unz.com:

“Taken from an interview with the newly founded German magazine “ViER” which will be published in August 2022.” ViER (FOUR), stands for the media as fourth power in checks and balances).

(1.) Prof. Hudson, your new book “The Destiny of Civilization” is out now. This lecture series on finance capitalism and the New Cold War presents an overview of your unique geo-political perspective.

You talk about an ongoing ideological and material conflict between financialized and de-industrialized countries like United States against the mixed-economies of China and Russia. What is this conflict about and why is the world right now at a unique “point of fracture” as your book states?

Today’s global fracture is dividing the world between two different economic philosophies: In the US/NATO West, finance capitalism is de-industrializing economies and has shifted manufacturing to Eurasian leadership, above all China, India and other Asian countries in conjunction with Russia providing basic raw materials and arms.

These countries are a basic extension of industrial capitalism evolving into socialism, that is, into a mixed economy with strong government infrastructure investment to provide education, health care, transportation and other basic needs by treating them as public utilities with subsidized or free services for these needs.

In the neoliberal US/NATO West, by contrast, this basic infrastructure is privatized as a rent-extracting natural monopoly.

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“Toto, I Don’t Think We’re in Kansas Anymore”, by Jeff Thomas

Capitalism is the economic system of free people, which means the U.S. has not had capitalism for a long time. Nonetheless, those who want to tear down the present system persist in calling it capitalism. From Jeff Thomas at internationalman.com:

Recently, an American colleague commented to me, “We no longer live in a democracy but a dictatorship disguised as a democracy.”

Is he correct? Well, a dictatorship may be defined as “a form of government in which absolute authority is exercised by a dictator.”

The US today is not be ruled by dictatorship (although, to some, it may well feel that way.)

But, if that’s the case, what form of rule does exist in the US?

At its formation, the founding fathers argued over whether the United States should be a republic or a democracy. Those founders who later formed the Federalist Party felt that it should be a democracy – rule by representatives elected by the people. Thomas Jefferson, who created the Democratic Republican Party, argued that it should be a republic – a state in which the method of governance is democracy, but the principle of governance is that the rights of the individual are paramount.

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Death of a Nightmare: The Last Gasps of Poseur Politics, by Duggan Flanakin

At some point people tire of the lies, and get rid of the people telling them. Just ask the folks at CNN. From Duggan Flanakin at americanthinker.com:

According to psychiatrist Seth D. Norrholm, dictators see themselves “as ‘very special’ people, deserving of admiration, and, consequently, [they] have difficulty empathizing with the feelings and needs of others; they also tend to behave with a vindictiveness often observed in narcissistic personality disorder.”

In other words, they are nuts. And dangerous. And in power.

Norrholm, who is currently scientific director, NeuroCAST, at Wayne State University’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Dr. Sam Hunley, now a program analyst with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, wrote in 2016 that highly narcissistic individuals require excessive admiration to remain happy and are more likely to try to punish those individuals who negatively evaluated their work.” [emphasis added]

The dictatorial nature of climate extremists (who repeat the mantra that the Earth has only X number of years — or weeks — left to take super drastic actions or we are all doomed) is evidenced by both their falsification (manipulation) of historical records and their apocalyptic demands, which have been quite successful. Fear is a powerful weapon. Resistance, they insist, is futile — and those who resist are worse than murderers. They are planet killers.

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Socialism: Opiate of the Masses, by Jon Rappoport

The deeply held beliefs of socialists generally find no support in history or logical analysis. That, of course, has never stopped a socialist. From Jon Rappoport at lewrockwell.com:

Let’s get something straight. There is no pure form of socialism, where “the government owns the means of production.”

The means of production own the government, and vice versa. It’s always collusion. Elite power players stitch themselves together like a walking Frankenstein corpse.

Socialism can be done with a smile or with guns and jails. Styles vary.

For example, the Council on Foreign Relations [CFR] believes an international “joining of hands across the water” would be just dandy.

You could call the CFR’s agenda socialism or Globalism or fascism or dictatorship or the corporate state—it doesn’t matter. For the sake of brevity, call it socialism.

At street level (not within the CFR), every proponent of the socialist “solution” either has no idea who installs it and runs it, or astonishingly believes “the government” can be transformed into a beneficent enterprise and shed its core corruption, as it takes the reins of absolute power.

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Corporate-State Fascism Is Already Here, by Good Citizen

This writer does not make the common mistake of mistaking current corporate-state fascism with capitalism. The two are poles apart. From Good Citizen at thegoodcitizen.substack.com:

Long live capitalism.

Brought to you by…

“Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power.” — Not Benito Mussolini, but still true.

Corporations have been controlling governments across the west to varying degrees since there were governments to control. Today this happens with back room deal making, revolving doors of executives shuffling between board rooms and government agencies charged with that industry’s oversight and then back to the board room. It happens through funding research with corporate grants and state subsidies in what is now called ‘regulatory capture’.

We do not call ‘regulatory capture’ bribery or corruption. We do not even call bribery or massive corruption in government by its real name, we call it “lobbying”. We do not call the lateral move from corporation to government agencies on behalf of that corporation’s industry corruption, we call it “public service”. No matter how large the speaking fees or how many millions in stock options await the public servant they are apparently still serving the public and not the corporation.

When politicians take millions in contributions from corporations we do not call that corruption either, or bribery, we call it “campaign financing” through “political action committees”. No matter how many millions the politician raises through these legal mechanisms we are still supposed to believe they will serve the voters and not their financial contributors.

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But What About the Roads? By Eric Peters

There is nothing that governments do other than make war that private individuals cannot do as well or better. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

But what about the roads?

Anyone who has tried to advocate for a libertarian society – i.e., a society in which coercion is the fundamental crime – has heard this refrain. Its premise is that we’d have no roads to travel on if it weren’t for government seizing people’s land – this is styled “eminent domain,” to make it sound official rather than immoral – and forcing people to pay for the roads laid down upon them.

It’s a strange argument given that – in the first place – roads precede government. They may have been (at first) mere paths or trails through woods and fields – but the function is fundamentally the same as any other road.

Some of these trails and paths eventually became very much like the roads as we know them, sans the asphalt and guardrails, of course. These roads were considered the public right-of-way for much of history – and it was accepted that everyone had the right to travel upon them.

So, roads – and the principle of the public right-of-way – predate government.

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What People Don’t Get About the ‘NATO Argument’, by Noah Carl

You can’t come up with a set of rules of which Russia is in breach of which the U.S. is not also in breach. From Noah Carl at dailyskeptic.org:

During a panel discussion in June of 2014 – four months after the toppling of Viktor Yanukovych in Ukraine – Professor John Mearsheimer was asked whether Ukrainians have a right to choose to join the West. His emphatic answer, which provoked laughter from his fellow panellists, was: “No, they don’t.”

This gets to the very heart of the current crisis. Those who deny the West bears any responsibility insist that we must uphold the principle that every state is sovereign and can enter whichever alliances it chooses. Now, this sounds very appealing. But there’s one major problem with it.

The problem is that the US – by far the most important Western country – has blatantly and repeatedly violated this principle over the last five decades. Hence if the West wants to make any kind of normative argument against Russia’s aggression, it has to explain why it doesn’t hold itself to the same standards.

This point was made eloquently by Robert Wright in a recent essay titled ‘In Defense of Whataboutism’. As he notes:

Exercises in whataboutism force people to mount what Singer calls “a disinterested defense of one’s conduct.” They have to articulate a general rule—or a general exception to a general rule—that applies to everyone in comparable circumstances.

Since there’s no “general rule” under which America’s foreign policy would be justified but Russia’s foreign policy would not be, the West cannot mount a “disinterested defence” of its conduct. (I suppose certain countries like Iceland might be able to, but the US – the only one that really matters – certainly can’t.)

So the West doesn’t actually uphold the principle that every state is sovereign and can enter whichever alliances it chooses. Once this is established, the question arises, ‘Is Ukraine one of those states that can’t enter whichever alliances it chooses?’

The Russians believe it is, and have made clear that Ukraine joining the West is an absolute red line for them. How should the West have dealt with this ultimatum?

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This Is Your Last Chance, Part Two, by Robert Gore

SWITZERLAND-POLITICS-ECONOMY-WEF

The biggest trend change in history.

Part One

Supposedly collectivists will reap the rewards of the only things they produce—destruction and death. After the collapse, a global collectivist government will replace the current multiplicity of collectivist governments. Most of the collapse’s survivors will become slaves living on subsistence doled out by the small aristocracy that will rule the planet. The real work will be done by artificially intelligent machines. The slaves will be pacified chemically and electronically through ubiquitous virtual reality technologies and monitored ceaselessly while the aristocrats live in unimaginable splendor. Those who resist pacification and enslavement will be “corrected,” or if that fails, murdered.

This is simply a straight line projection of the present and recent past that ignores a fully evident counter-trend still gathering steam. After a centuries-long, bull-market run, government as an institution has topped out. The plans and predictions of the global totalitarians are the overconfident rationalizations of newly minted millionaires at the top of bull markets—the “permanently high plateau” in 1929, the “new economy” in 2000, “house prices only go up” in 2007, and “the Fed’s got our backs” now.

We already have shining examples of totalitarian collectivist failure in really big countries with lots of people—the Soviet Union and Communist China. The former collapsed after tens of millions died, the latter made a mid-course correction towards more freedom after tens of millions died.

Blithering idiots attribute those failures to incomplete control by the totalitarians or claim collectivism can only work when the whole world is completely enslaved. They ignore the core quandary of collectivist control—it produces nothing. Collectivist governments steal, they don’t produce. A global collectivist government will produce exactly what the current multiplicity of collectivist governments produce: nothing. Yet, this government will supposedly build the world back better from the ashes of financial, economic, and political collapse.

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This Is Your Last Chance, by Robert Gore

This is Part One, Part Two will be posted 1/21.

The indictment is long and strong. A cabal of politicians, governments, courts, medical authorities, pharmaceutical companies, multinational agencies, the mainstream media, academics, and foundations, particularly the World Economic Forum, have concocted responses to a virus and its variants that have robbed the people of rightful liberties, are a mechanism for the imposition of global totalitarianism, and have amplified rather than reduced the virus’s dangers, inflicting severe injury and death that will last years, perhaps decades, and afflict millions, if not billions, of victims (See “The Means Are The End,” Robert Gore, SLL, November 13, 2021).

This is their last chance. They can reverse course and pray to whatever demonic deity they pray to that it’s enough to prevent the retribution they deserve, or they can perish in the destruction they’ve created. They will reap what they have sown, their time is up.

This is it, the last gasp of the psychopaths who express their contempt and hatred for humanity by trying to rule it. Compulsion, not voluntary and natural cooperation. Power, pull, and politics, not incentives, competition, honest production, and value-for-value trade. From each according to his virtue to each according to his depravity.

The Last Gasp,” Robert Gore, SLL, March 24, 2020

Their time is up. This assertion may appear as recklessly foolish as Luke Skywalker’s ultimatum—“Jabba, this is your last chance, free us or die!”—did to Jabba the Hut at the Sarlacc Pit. It’s not, but to understand why requires an understanding of slow moving (on human time scale) but enormously powerful forces. Most history studies the wrong things and most predictions are straight line projections of the present and recent past.

The linchpin of history is innovation, not governments and rulers. We don’t know who ruled whom when humanity lived in caves, but we do know that someone tamed fire, someone planted seeds and cultivated them for food, and someone invented the wheel. With such steps humanity emerged from the caves and began building civilization. Even at this early stage one thing was clear: innovation creates new capabilities and opportunities and serves as the basis for further innovation.

Government is the acquisition of resources that enables those who govern to exercise control over those whom they govern. This presupposes resources, which presupposes production. Government is always subsidiary to production, yet most history focuses on the former and treats the latter as a secondary matter. This is looking down the telescope from the wrong end. Before a government can take someone must make.

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