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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Brief History of the US Empire

~ Map depicts largest corporation in every US state

There used to be a time when we the US would shake our big 'stick' as Teddy Roosevelt coined the phrase, and the world would shake in fear..

Or to put it more crudely, a time when we could shake our 'big dick' and the world would get wet..

It started with the turn of the 20th century (pre WWI) where pretty much all nations except the Big-3 of the day - Britain, France and Germany shivered in their boots at our passing

By the time WWII ended, thirty-some years passed..

The economies of those former Big-3 were in such disarray with military severely weakened and holding on to whatever colonies remained by mere threads, the US basically stepped over the carcasses and became #1
~ Japan surrenders to Gen. MacArthur aboard the USS Missouri, 1945

In fact few people openly discuss this because we are supposed to be allies and friends but it was the US who weakened Britain's Empire as much as any of her enemy..

We did this via 'Land-Lease' deals where we would give weapons in exchange for UK-held land abroad and purposely delayed entrance into WWII for a good 1-2 years while Britain was receiving a daily barrage of German blitzkreig

This was to ensure that when the US entered the war and ultimately won it, that Britain wouldn't have the economic capacity to resume its sun never setting Empire or be on equal footing with the US at the peace table..

Think about it.. Who was supreme commander of Allied forces in Europe including all of Britain's military?  Who was Gen. Montgomery's superior officer?   An American..  Eisenhower

As it was by 1940, France was just another Hitler-controlled territory so they certainly weren't going to have a voice at any peace table to shape the future.
~  Treaty of Versailles; Wilson (right) having to share stage with Lloyd George of Britain (left) and Clemenceau of France (center)

We felt at the time that Britain and France had too much say at the Treaty of Versailles which formally ended WWI and they essentially sabotaged and destroyed Pres. Wilson's Fourteen-Points plan to ensure peace in Europe forever

And we weren't going to let that happen again..

This was 1945.. We won the war- defeated Germany, Italy and Japan and we possessed the Bomb..

It was America's time to mold the world.

But then something happened terrible to alter this hegemony forever..
 Julius and Ethyl Rosenberg-- two deeply vile American born Communists decided to betray the nation of their birth by committing espionage and passing on information about the atomic bomb to the Soviets which allowed them ultimately to possess nuclear capabilities as well..

And as a result of this treason, you had for the next 40 years a 'Cold War' that took millions of lives -- American, Russian, Korean, Vietnamese, etc

Currently nine nations possess nuclear weapons-  US, Russia, UK, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel with Iran seeking to be nation #10..

And through one military failure after another combined with creating post-war the biggest economic and technological adversaries of the present -Germany, Japan, China, etc..  the once super-powerful US has sabotaged itself...

America was an exporting nation... Now all we export are Hollywood entertainment, porn, our education to foreign students and middle-class jobs..
And instead of trying to work with those nations we allowed to reach our status as equal big-players in the game of world chess, we antagonize.. even the ones we owe billions if not trillions of dollars to..

Russia's President Putin is visiting China this week seeking to bolster their ties and as day 1 shows, he's doing a very good job of it:

" VTB - among Russia's largest banks - has signed a deal with Bank of China to pay each other in domestic currencies, bypassing the need for US Dollars for investment banking, inter-bank lending, trade finance and capital-markets transactions."  (RussiaToday)

But it doesn't stop with banking...

"In the first day of a two-day trip to China Russia’s President Vladimir Putin said the two countries will be increasing their bilateral trade to reach a new level.  “Our countries have done a huge job to reach a new historic landmark…. China has firmly settled in a position of our key trade partner."...

Putin also said that trade turnover between Russia and China grew almost 2 percent during 2013 to reach about $90 billion.  “If we sustain this pace the level of bilateral trade of $100 billion will be reached by 2015 and we’ll confidently move on,”"

This trade relationship includes oil sales..
All this in response to meaningless and trivial but heavily symbolic sanctions levied at Russia by the US and the EU because we didn't like Putin taking back into the fold a territory that for centuries belonged to Russia

And we seem to think we still carry a big-stick and all we need to do is go Bam! Bam! Bam! a few times and the world will shiver..

For some nations..  especially the developing BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China), that simply isn't the case...

Did you know between the BRIC nations alone, they hold over $1.7 Trillion dollars of US debt-- this isn't all China.  It includes $245 billion held by Brazil and over $100 billion by Russia...

We're hard pressed in real life to find situations where heavy debtors have the guts or chutzpah to push and bully the very entities they owe money to..
Yet the US does it..  Or at least tries to..

Its a different world then before and its constantly changing..

On this day 100 years ago, a good month before the official start to World War I, it was a world of Empire..  Those who seemed destined to hold onto theirs for centuries (Britain, France, Austria-Hungary, Ottoman) and others frantically looking to carve their niche (Germany, Japan, Italy)

And hundreds of millions of lives later, all of it was drained away along with the blood spent..

And then America stepped into the fold and had grand plans

The Marshall Plan being one..
And between hubris and traitors from within, sabotaged itself..

Costly wars in the 1950s through early 1970s draining the Treasury of hundreds of billions causing the ultimate disconnect of currency from the gold standard along with the demoralization of an important segment of its population i.e. the youth only sped the decline...

Being provoked into a never-ending war that has lasted over 13years and is spread via troop or drone to over twenty nations hasn't helped things either..

We will always wonder if Bush's response to 9/11 would have been the same if 3,000 Americans were tragically and horrifically killed in Sheboygan, WI or Kalamazoo, MI..  Or if 3,000 New Yorkers died but in the Bronx or Long Island and those precious Towers were unscathed?
Quick story:  Yours truly took a trip last summer to Philadelphia to visit for a brief spell..  The city itself was as normal as any other city.. People going to and fro.. Normal police presence..

After a very nice walk, I approached the historical center, specifically Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, and in all honestly, I have never seen such a concentrated police presence in all my life..

Let's just say, if a mugger had knocked me over and stole my possessions while sitting in Independence Park, the criminal would have been tackled to the ground by a dozen police in mere seconds..  No exaggeration..

If I was mugged outside that historical parameter, God help me...

Our government doesn't protect people.. it protects symbols.
And so ten.. twenty.. thirty years from now, will the US still be a super-power or just a large mass of land with no geopolitical significance like Canada?

Or will we still be one nation?  Or will an economic collapse and social upheaval cause us to break up into sections like the former Soviet Union?

Its not that far fetched..  one President controls over 315 million lives' destiny.   That really is too much power for one person, Democrat or Republican.

Or maybe the US will develop a super-weapon to make the nuclear bomb obsolete or create a 'shield' or something from sci-fi which allows us to hold the military upper-hand and not fear reprisal as in 1945..
Or be able magically to pay off all debts or evaporate them, then up a new economic model which allows us to be supreme lender once more and hold the world hostage as we sorta do via our IMF and World Bank..

Who knows..  It was said once by someone that the future is yet unwritten..

It was also said history repeats..  Ask Britain and the Romans..