empire revoltA massive shift is brewing.  A major percentage of the American people are sick and tired of being fleeced by government gone wild.   You can’t see this shift within mainstream media reportage, and certainly there’s a major percentage of the population that has indeed adopted a strategy of tending to day-to-day life in the hopes of not being the nail that sticks out that gets hammered down.  But make no mistake, Ron Paul’s “Campaign For Liberty” is a perfect example of a rising tide of millions of Americans that have simply had enough.  The movement is demanding a return to the principals that made this nation great; sound economics, sound money, a return to real capitalism and not crony capitalism and the feeding of a parasitic finance oligarchy that has metastasized into a cancer partially responsible for the eventual loss of the U.S. dollar’s exorbitant privilege.
What happened this week is not a sign of weakness.  It’s a sign America is coming to terms with reality.  We have a choice.  We can elect to be honest about what we have done to our economy, particularly with debt and insane financialization.   We can elect to have a sober relationship with the international community that guards our interests while jettisoning delusions of empire and it’s untenable financial burden.  We can elect to do away with the facilitated empowerment of radicalism that feeds the so-called war on terrorism and stop creating terrorists as a byproduct of our foreign policy.  We can elect to embrace sane economic liberalization without furthering crony capitalism, and the need for a domestic nascent police state to protect the powers that be.  We can elect to restore the rule of law and the Bill of Rights and restore faith in our institutions and society. 
Alternatively, we can slide down the path of all empires of old.

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TND Media Context Review / By Eric Dubin / american-exceptionalism

A great many in the media are parroting the meme that the United States and the Obama Administration has shown a lack of resolve when it comes to the question of Syria.  As a prime example, Politico leads today with the silly headline, “The United States of weakness.”

Obama has acted like a lawyer and public relations specialist rather than a true leader.  Duh…  As if that should be a surprise?

Six days ago, in the context of the propaganda campaign to justify a military strike against Syria, I wrote:  “America, demand your leaders act like statesmen, not cheap PR lawyer hacks.  Wake up!  Endless ‘framing’ and lies must stop.“  Guess what?  That is exactly what happened, and Obama is merely responding to the will of the people and other political dynamics.  Let’s dive into those other political dynamics and then return to examine what really is going on with the will of the people, shall we?

First of all, I need to point out that early on Monday, I wrote:

“Rumor has it that Congress may vote on a Syria strike resolution as early as Wednesday.  Our call:  there are significant odds the vote will be delayed.”

Yesterday, in a subsequent essay I described the concept of “moral authority” as a source of geostrategic power.  Consider this prophetic comment, in particular:

“It’s pathetic that the world must look toward  seasoned diplomat Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov for an example of (at least in this case) true statesman leadership and moral authority.  Lavrov proposed that the Syrian government put its chemical weapons arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction.  If American “leaders” were truly motivated to reduce the use of chemical weapons, pursuing Lavrov’s idea would be worth at least a two week experiment in diplomacy.”

Only hours after writing those words, the Obama Administration started signaling it will consider Lavrov’s proposal.  I’m not psychic!  I do, however, have formal training in International Relations that informs a deeper understanding of the wellsprings of geostrategic power than apparently the authors of the above cited Politico article.

For a number of decades, “moral authority” served as the bedrock for American geopolitical might.  True, the US represented about half of global economic output at the close of World War II.  Similarly, the US enjoyed absolute military dominance in the immediate years following the end of WWII.  But make no mistake, “moral authority” was just as important in America’s rise to greatness.  American foreign policy leaders consciously propagated the meme of America as the “exceptional” nation, with “moral authority” that stood against former European colonial powers — and certainly, against the “godless communists.”

As with many things in life, the reality of America versus the vision of “moral authority” was fraught with contradictions.  A crystal clear example can be seen with American policy towards Iran under the the leadership of nationalist Mohammad Mosaddegh.  Mosaddegh embraced the US Deceleration of Independence on Iranian national television.  He praised Thomas Jefferson and America’s founding fathers.  But Mosaddegh also nationalized Iran’s oil industry and kicked the West out.  He crossed more than just a “red line”! America sent Kermit Roosevelt, grandson of President Theodore Roosevelt, on a black-op mission to foment civil strife and riots that ultimately led to Mosaddegh’s overthrow.

What’s happening today on the international front is that America’s turn towards a police state and “unilateralist” on the international stage is catching up with our nation.  How can a nation claim “moral authority” when it consistently violates the spirit and letter of international law and launches wars like some Hollywood studio cranking out B Movies?

Toss on economic dynamics.  The empire’s finances reek.  If true, Generally Accepted Accounting Principles were employed to calculate the annual Federal deficit, the figure would be north of six trillion.  Add to this fact the long-term picture.  The net present value of unfunded entitlement programs is hotly debated, and small changes in assumptions can result in large differences in estimates.  Nevertheless the figures are shocking regardless how conservative one is with assumptions.  Boston University economics professor Laurence Kotlikoff has consistently offered high-side estimates, but even the more tame assumptions used by James Hamilton result in a figure of $70+ trillion, more than four times America’s national output (click here for more info).

Certainly, America is asset-rich, and these problems are perhaps addressable with true leadership on deck.  But the fact remains, just as Rome, the American empire is over-stretched, and the exorbitant privilege that comes with controlling the world’s primary reserve and trade settlement currency is under direct assault.  The formal agenda for last week’s G-20 meeting addressed this very subject, and the days of the dollar’s “exorbitant privilege” are numbered.

When the Soviet Union collapsed and the policy establishment started pondering silly constructs like Francis Fukuyama’s “End of History,” the stage was set for the rise of the Neocons and their overt embrace of empire building, with next to no appreciation for “moral authority.”  What we have witnessed this week is nothing less than a major shift away from the neocon worldview, as the neocon doctrine is transitioning into the trashcan of history.  Object reality of America’s declining relative power is the proximate cause, and in the short-term there isn’t a damn thing anyone can do about it.  Long-term?  That’s a different issue and way beyond the scope of this essay.

Meanwhile, on the domestic front, there is a massive shift brewing.  A major percentage of the American people are sick and tired of being fleeced by government gone wild.  The Millennial generation, in particular, are going to have a few choice words with the Baby Boomers on the question of entitlement programs.  You can’t see this shift within mainstream media reportage, and certainly there’s a major percentage of the population that has indeed adopted a strategy of tending to day-to-day life in the hopes of not being the nail that sticks out that gets hammered down.  But make no mistake, Ron Paul’s “Campaign For Liberty” is a perfect example of a rising tide of millions of Americans that have simply had enough.  The movement is demanding a return to the principals that made this nation great, sound economics, sound money, a return to real capitalism and not crony capitalism and the feeding of a parasitic finance oligarchy that has metastasized into a cancer partially responsible for the eventual loss of the U.S. dollar’s exorbitant privilege.

What the folks at Politico and so many other arm-chair analysts fail to see coming are two-fold:  Internationally, the days of the American unilateralist empire are over;  domestically, the liberty movement is going to explode on to the center stage of American politics as a direct response to the powers that be clinging to the existing, broken order.

Ironically enough, when Obama ran for president, his campaign platform spoke directly to many of the principles of this nascent liberty movement – an end to empire building, bringing the troops home, closing Guantanamo Bay (remember, concern for the damage to “moral authority” was what policy makers considered material), becoming the most transparent president in history, a restoration of the rule of law and respect for the Bill of Rights, and on and on and on.  All of this was total bullshit, and anyone that simply looked at where Obama’s money came from (not to mention his fishy background) could see he was going to prove to be a puppet and turncoat.  But don’t miss the point.  His campaign platform spoke to where the nation’s heart has been moving.

buff sale(2)Unpacking these dynamics in an essay is difficult without spilling much ink.  Many will find it easy to take these words out of context or simply construct sound arguments because I do not have the space here to fully expound and document.  So be it.  Perhaps I will return to this theme at a later date.

Bottom-line: what happened this week is not a sign of weakness.  It’s a sign America is coming to terms with reality.  We have a choice.  We can elect to be honest about what we have done to our economy, particularly with debt and insane financialization.   We can elect to have a sober relationship with the international community that guards our interests while jettisoning delusions of empire and it’s untenable financial burden.  We can elect to do away with the facilitated empowerment of radicalism that feeds the so-called war on terrorism and stop creating terrorists as a byproduct of our foreign policy.  We can elect to embrace sane economic liberalization without furthering crony capitalism, and the need for a domestic nascent police state to protect the powers that be.  We can elect to restore the rule of law and the Bill of Rights.  In fact, America can elect to restore transparency to our covert history, the hidden history of our CIA and shadow government and nascent police state in service of a restoration of “moral authority.”  America can elect to do all of this, over the coming decades and restore faith in our institutions and society.  Alternatively, we can slide down the path of all empires of old.

What say you, dear American?  The choice is yours.

  1. Just be ready folks because they are backed into a corner and anything is possible. I smell a false flag. It’ the only way for them to put the Jeannie back into the bottle……and that may not even work at this point, and they know it, thus the FEMA camps, the martial law preparations, the ammo purchases, the plastic coffins etc.. Do not be surprised if they pull a rabbit out of the hat. Desperation is a bitch! Preparedness is fashionable at this stage…….

  2. We will know them by their deeds not their words. It has taken a long time to weaken this country…decade by decade greed was the primary motivation…I don’t think that greed is relevant now. Now it’s power. The endgame is now and total control of the human race is the prize. We have been lied to before but now lies no longer do the rhetoric justice. They took down three buildings, disappeared 4 planes, and slaughtered thousands to prove they can. The stakes have been raised folks…we go big or we go away. They deal from the bottom of the deck,they cheat lie and change the rules at their leisure…and WE let them. The fate of humanity lies with those of us who know and its our job to awaken the rest who can be. 

  3. This is the September I was talking about, & we are not even half way through the month.

    To the surprise of readers, September 17, 2013 in Russia will be a BRICS meeting to relieve themselves of debt.

    This time will be the creation of a new Central Bank. Do you know what that means? Competition in the World Bank.

    Curtains I tell you, curtains.

  4. Next false flag will involve an AR-15 or AK-47 being used on a large crowd with mass casualties. It will be captured live at some event and an immediate vote will ban them with mandatory surrender of all semi auto rifles including 22lr plinking guns. That will be the start of civil war also.

  5. Well, thank heavens for small victories.  I talked to an 89 year old friend today and convinced him to buy some gold and silver, close out his safe deposit box and reduce his bank account expose.  Just told him about the usual suspects.
    Another regular asked the question about what the price of silver might do if the Dow drops like a rock  Silver went down frm $17 to about$8-9.   Your could not buy it for less than $10-12.  But it dropped hard when the Dow crashed in 2008.  My concern is what I call the ‘fear factor liquidation event’ where all asset classes are sold.  I dont know if that will happen this time. If the Dow drops 25-40% with silver and gold hammered for the last 30 months, it’s difficult for me to see how silver and gold could be crushed by another 50%, like the Dow crash of 2008 The Dow and other indices are up double digits and precious metals are down double digits. that does not make sense in the real world
    Maybe people will be so sick of the stock market ups and downs they might just rotate to precious metals  My thinking is that precious metals have had their bitch whipping. They might be the desired asset class when equities AND bonds hit the skids.  There’s much more remaining to bond price declines if UST 10 yr goes to 4-5%. 5% is a normal range for the type of bond
    Derivatives are something else and that collapsing game changer, if it really hits and is no longer fraudulently held from being marked to market, will be something that makes all the other issues seem small.  Just sayin’

    • Good post, AG, as usual.  :-)
       
      “I talked to an 89 year old friend today and convinced him to buy some gold and silver, close out his safe deposit box and reduce his bank account expose.”
       
      I hope that your 89 year old friend follows your advice and has some way to secure his stack.  Tossing it into a sock drawer or putting it under the mattress is not a good strategy.  A well hidden and well secured safe is the way to go… that or the Bank of Mother Earth.  Just be certain that this elderly gentleman does not rely on his memory to locate his stack when he needs it or when his heirs come into it.
       
       
      “Another regular asked the question about what the price of silver might do if the Dow drops like a rock  Silver went down frm $17 to about$8-9.   Your could not buy it for less than $10-12.  But it dropped hard when the Dow crashed in 2008.”
       
      Cash was king during the 2008 financial asset collapse, no doubt.  But we are all concerned about the possibility of a currency collapse on top of financial assets collapsing.  In that case, cash would not be king because it would be just as hammered as everything else.  Even if paper silver and gold get crushed during the next financial crisis, we need to remember that this is the paper price and with the paper world coming unraveled, we can expect this to unravel too.  The value of real assets, such as PMs, will either not participate in this unraveling or will recover very quickly.  4,000+ years of history with gold and silver as financial assets cannot be dismissed as lightly as the paper pushers desire.  People will recognize them as something of value.  It may not happen immediately but it will happen, so we need to be patient.
       
      Good point on the disconnect between silver prices in 2008 and the inability of any of us to actually buy any at the paper prices.  Once the paper price of silver recovered to around $15, suddenly there was plenty of silver inventory to buy… but nothing at $10-12.  People who had silver simply refused to sell at those low prices.  This was a classic case of the paper market leading and no one following.
       
      “…it’s difficult for me to see how silver and gold could be crushed by another 50%, like the Dow crash of 2008 The Dow and other indices are up double digits and precious metals are down double digits. that does not make sense in the real world.”
       
      I agree that this is difficult to conceive but would suggest that anything that has already happened CAN and probably will happen again at some point.
       
      As to “the real world”, lol, what’s that?  The real world as we once knew it is no more and the events that have occurred over the past 5 years show this to be the absolute case.  We now do not live in a real world that is dominated by facts but in a Bizarro type world similar to what Orwell predicted in his novels “1984″ and “Animal Farm”.  Remember the old lines like “lies are truth”, “in conformity lies freedom”, etc.?  Well, we seem to have that in spades these days.  Instead, we have “paper” is real and hard assets are not.  Huh?  No, stuff like this makes no sense but then that is probably its purpose… to daze and confuse everyone who isn’t in on “the plan”.
       
      “There’s much more remaining to bond price declines if UST 10 yr goes to 4-5%. 5% is a normal range for the type of bond.”
       
      Agreed.  But we must remember that in years past when the UST bond carried a 5% or higher coupon, it was deserved by the fact that the US was in MUCH better financial condition then.  These days, the US national debt is MUCH higher than before, our GDP is shrinking, our middle class is being crushed, currency is being over-printed, the era of cheap energy is over, and non-productive government is expanding faster than ever.
       
      “Derivatives are something else and that collapsing game changer, if it really hits and is no longer fraudulently held from being marked to market, will be something that makes all the other issues seem small.”
       
      I agree completely.  IMO, this is the financial weapon of mass destruction that will destroy the current fiat financial paradigm.  While it might be avoided by some very fancy financial slight of hand maneuvering, this possibility seems to shrink as we move forward.  I would hope that some form of freeze could be implemented on these things while they are being unwound but this would require some extraordinary financial skill AND cooperation of many people, organizations, and governments.  It has the potential to spin out of control so rapidly that it could be unstoppable… like an avalanche… and is best handled BEFORE the entire derivatives edifice begins to crack and crumble.  Once that happens, it will be every group for themselves, devil take the hindmost, and cooperation will be out the window.  Unfortunately, government these days is heavily into reaction rather than action and seem quite reluctant to even acknowledge this issue, let alone take preventative measures to end the threat they pose to the entire world financial system.
       

  6. EdB  Th eonly example of a bank gone wrong with a heavy investment in derivatives is Banca De Monti Pesci, the oldest bank in Italy.  Back in the early 1990′s Monti> Draghi? (I think) was a senior official with the Italian government.  At that time the bank was induced to invest in and use derivatives.  It might have been to induce them to buy Italian bonds or other instruments during a time of crisis. I am a little vague on the exact details but the actions at the time are being shown as nothing more than financial skullduggery in convincing this bank to buy into the derivatives market at that time. 
    Fast forward 17 years to 2009 or so this bank asked for the first of its 4 bailouts, the most recent just a few months ago, as these derivatives and the bonds etc that they were supposed to insure ended up gutting the bank of its entire capital base.  Thus far this bank has received about 10 billion Euros to keep it afloat.  The actions in the early 1990s was patently illegal then since the action of putting derivatives into the bank was sure to fail.  This bank might be the first in Italy to precipitate an Italian bail-in.  we will see
     
    As for my 89 year old friend, he is buying a solid fireproof safe to safeguard his valuables.  its all good.

  7. Government is almost always a bad idea for the regular man on the street.
     
    In a nutshell, when the fate of the ‘leaders’ isn’t intertwined with those that ‘follow’, justice will NOT be done.
     
    Globalism is the opposite of what we need.

  8. I think America was “sent home to think again!”. Seriously, you think you can take out the Russians with anything less than total war?

    Being a Brit, it never ceases to amaze me how a small island is always up for a scrap someplace, how honorable men are placed in harms way so cheaply. So I was amazed when this time round, parliament said “erm…no…I think not!!”…why…because we are only up for a fight if we know we can win. How on earth do you win a war in Syria, what are the parameters for victory? Who in childish terms in Syria are the “Goodies” and “Baddies”?

    The whole concept of smacking the wrists of people who are using chemical weapons, is just plain stupid. And what every happened to the “war on terror”? Surely if you just let Syria get down and dirty, where all good men stay away and the Islamists who want Jihad go piling in from all the nations of the world, surely this will be the solution to the war on terror? Countless number of European Islamists are piling into Syria as I type this, even the Taliban are wading in. If they are occupied with their stupid idea of Armageddon, great, means more of my enemies are being killed, by my enemies, than the enemies killing my friends.

    I think we should sit this one out, see what happens.

  9. Oh yeah, the people are revolting against the tyranny … less than 1% own gold/silver, but a much higher percentage than that are involved in the ‘revolution’, and who support ‘Ron Paul’ (most of which don’t own gold/silver) … they want a return to sound money, so that they will end up with nothing. Sure, it’s weird, but if it’s published, it’s true.
     
    There is no revolution, so why is there such a media storm about it?

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