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.
Posted in Business, Capitalism, Currencies, Debt, Economics, Economy, Energy, Eurasian Axis, Financial markets, Geopolitics, Governments, Trade
Tagged Industrialization, Neoliberalism, Socialism
Unless he really is a reptile and lives another few decades, Soros’ will probably never pick up the pieces in China. From Michael Hudson at counterpunch.org:
Photograph Source: Central European University – CC BY 2.0
In a Financial Times op-ed, “Investors in Xi’s China face a rude awakening” (August 30, 2021), George Soros writes that Xi’s “crackdown on private enterprise shows he does not understand the market economy. … Xi Jinping, China’s leader, has collided with economic reality. His crackdown on private enterprise has been a significant drag on the economy.”
Translated out of Orwellian Doublethink, the “crackdown on private enterprise” means cutting back on what the classical economists called rent-seeking and unearned income. As for its supposed “drag on the economy,” Mr. Soros means the economy’s polarization concentrating wealth and income in the hands of the richest One Percent.
Soros lays out his plan for how U.S. retaliation may punish China by withholding U.S. funding of its companies (as if China cannot create its own credit) until China capitulates and imposes the kind of deregulation and de-taxation that Russia did after 1991. He warns that China will suffer depression by saving its economy along socialist lines and resisting U.S.-style privatization and its associated debt deflation.
Mr. Soros does recognize that China’s “most vulnerable sector is real estate, particularly housing. China has enjoyed an extended property boom over the past two decades, but that is now coming to an end. Evergrande, the largest real estate company, is over-indebted and in danger of default. This could cause a crash.” By that, he means a reduction of housing prices. That’s just what is needed in order to deter land becoming a speculative vehicle. I and others have urged a policy of land taxation in order to collect the land’s rising site value, so that it will not be pledged to banks for mortgage credit to further inflate china’s housing prices.
Posted in Banking, Business, Debt, Economics, Economy, Financial markets, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Politics
Tagged China, George Soros, Neoliberalism
The mixed economy has been an unmixed curse on most Americans, especially the ones who don’t want to live off their countrymen. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:
According to official US government economic data, the US economy has been growing for 10.5 years since June of 2009. The reason that the US government can produce this false conclusion is that costs that are subtrahends from GDP are not included in the measure. Instead, many costs are counted not as subtractions from growth but as additions to growth. For example, the penalty interest on a person’s credit card balance that results when a person falls behind his payments is counted as an increase in “financial services” and as an increase in Gross Domestic Product. The economic world is stood on its head.
It is aggregate demand that drives the economy. Payments made on a rise in interest rates on credit card balances from 19% to a 29% penalty rate reduce consumers’ ability to contribute to aggregate demand by purchasing goods and the services of doctors, lawyers, plumbers, electricians, and carpenters. Contrary to logic, the fee is magically counted in the “financial services” category as a contributor to GDP growth. The extortion of a fee that reduces aggregate demand lowers GDP, but builds paper wealth in the financial services sector.
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Posted in Banking, Business, Debt, Economy, Financial markets, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Government, Politics
Tagged Credit, Finance capitalism, Neoliberalism
The US orchestrated global order is being questioned on many fronts. From Alastair Crooke at strategic-culture.org:
Kevin Baron, editor of Defense One (a leading US defence publication, funded by the defence industry) explains his anxieties about NATO’s future:
“NATO’s external threats, and internal leaders’ divisions are not what worries me the most … I expected panelists I spoke with over the past month to raise familiar issues … but I was surprised by their serious concern about the very fabric of the alliance: ‘This time it’s different’, many insist: “The philosophy on which this whole institution is built is profoundly challenged,” opined journalist Bobby Ghosh of Bloomberg Opinion (“in our pre-summit conversation at IISS”). [Emphasis added].
“His point was – that if leaders such as Trump and Erdogan continue to cosy-up to Russia – then what’s the purpose of this Cold War-era alliance? That’s a fair point. But I believe NATO’s biggest threat [comes from] its own inward-turning electorates. To global security leaders, from think tanks to the secure ‘tank’ inside the Pentagon, NATO is an essential organization and tool for the West’s ‘way of life’. It’s not even a question … Those leaders believe: How could anyone want to harm that?”.
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The EU and the neoliberal globalist project cannot allow Brexit to go through in any form but complete bastardization. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:
When the Soviet Union fell in 1991 Marxism was dealt a near fatal blow. The crown jewel of communism was no more and descended into the worst kind of lawlessness.
Francis Fukiyama famously declared the End of History and the U.S. went on a ‘to the victors go the spoils’ looting of 1990’s Russia that boggles the imagination.
Marxists were left floundering. They were convinced the end of capitalism would occur and communism would win. Their identity was shattered on the shores of collectivism’s inherent inconsistencies.
It’s lack of basic understanding of why man acts and what he hopes to achieve when he acts that dooms all forms of collectivism to eventual failure.
The cries went up among the committed Marxists to then blame the U.S.S.R. that it wasn’t real communism. And their argument shifted to European Democratic Socialism as the superior implementation.
For the past twenty-eight years we’ve been inundated with this by leftists who refuse to give up on the dream. It’s still just warmed-over Marxism but whatever.
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As SLL recently noted, the American empire has run into a sea of woes. From Federico Pieraccini at strategic-culture.org:
We are witnessing the withdrawal from Syria of the American military contingent, protests in France, the prospect of a British hard Brexit, the political decline of Angela Merkel in Germany, Netanyahu in crisis, and Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia suddenly becoming an international pariah. The contemporary crisis of leadership in Europe, the United States and among their main allies has thrown the West into chaos, leading it to one of its most critical junctures in recent decades. It is a situation brought on by the United States and its contradictory politics, which results in diminishing the sovereignty and decision-making power of Washington’s allies.
Well before the election of Donald Trump, European Union leaders Merkel, Cameron and Hollande were already faltering and evidencing signs of failure.
Hollande fell in the polls because of policies favoring the interests of the elites at the expense of the increasingly poor and indebted French population. Cameron, to stave off a Labour victory under Jeremy Corbyn, promised a vote on Brexit, a decision that would eventually end up costing him his political career. Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, the undisputed master of the German political scene, suffered for the first time in fifteen years heavy electoral defeats stemming from recent migration policies. The Chancellor, harshly criticized for these results, resigned from the position of president of the party, leaving the CDU split into two factions. The situation worsened in the UK and France over the next twelve months, with Cameron resigning following the Brexit vote and Hollande forced to give up on the the idea of running for reelection given his unpopularity.
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Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Immigration, Imperialism, Media, Politics, War
Tagged Angela Merkel, Brexit, Emmanuel Macron, Globalism, Neoliberalism, Theresa May