Thread Rating:
  • 4 Vote(s) - 2.5 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Tom Hartmann and Sam Sackse

Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos in his office at the Presidential Palace in Athens, Greece, January 16, 2012. (Photo: Eirini Vourloumis / The New York Times) When the people of Greece saw their democratically elected Prime Minister George Papandreou forced out of office in November of 2011 and replaced by an unelected Conservative technocrat, Lucas Papademos, most were unaware of the bigger picture of what was happening all around them.

Similarly, most of us in the United States were equally as ignorant when, in 2008, despite the switchboards at the US Capitol collapsing under the volume of phone calls from constituents urging a “no” vote, our elected representatives voted “yes” at the behest of Bush's Treasury Secretary Henry Paulsen and jammed through the biggest bailout of Wall Street in our nation’s history.

But now, as the Bank of England, a key player in the ongoing Eurozone crisis, announces that former investment banker Mark Carney will be its new chief, we can’t afford to ignore what’s happening around the world.

Steadily – and stealthily – Goldman Sachs is carrying out a global coup d’etat.

There’s one tie that binds Lucas Papademos in Greece, Henry Paulsen in the United States, and Mark Carney in the U.K., and that’s Goldman Sachs. All were former bankers and executives at the Wall Street giant, all assumed prominent positions of power, and all played a hand after the global financial meltdown of 2007-08, thus making sure Goldman Sachs weathered the storm and made significant profits in the process.

But that's just scratching the surface.

As Europe descends into an austerity-induced economic crisis, Goldman Sachs's people are managing the demise of the continent. As the British newspaper The Independent reported earlier this year, the Conservative technocrats currently steering or who have steered post-crash fiscal policy in Greece, Germany, Italy, Belgium, France, and now the UK, all hail from Goldman Sachs. In fact, the head of the European Central Bank itself, Mario Draghi, was the former managing director of Goldman Sachs International.

And here in the United States, after Treasury Secretary and former Goldman CEO Henry Paulsen did his job in 2008 securing Goldman’s multi-billion dollar bailout, he was replaced in the new Obama administration with Tim Geithner who worked very closely with Goldman Sachs as head of the New York Fed and made sure Goldman received more than $14 billion from the bailout of failed insurance giant AIG.

What’s happening here goes back more than a decade.

In 2001, Goldman Sachs secretly helped Greece hide billions of dollars through the use of complex financial instruments like credit default swaps. This allowed Greece to meet the baseline requirements to enter the Eurozone in the first place. But it also created a debt bubble that would later explode and bring about the current economic crisis that’s drowning the entire continent. But, always looking ahead, Goldman protected itself from this debt bubble by betting against Greek bonds, expecting that they would eventually fail.

Ironically, the man who headed up the Central Bank of Greece while this deal was being arranged with Goldman was – drumroll please – Lucas Papademos.

Goldman made similar deals here in the United States, masking the true value of investments, then selling those worthless investments to customers while placing bets that those same investments would eventually fail. The most notorious example was the “Timberwolf” deal, which brought down an Australian hedge fund, and which Goldman Sachs banksters emailed each other about, bragging, “Boy, that Timberwolf was one shitty deal.”

This sort of behavior by Goldman helped inflate, and then eventually pop, the housing bubble in the United States. The shockwave then ran across the Atlantic, hitting Europe and turning Goldman’s debt-masking deal with Greece years earlier sour, thus deepening the crisis.

All of these antics should have brought about the demise of Goldman as well, but with their alumni in key policy positions on both sides of the Atlantic, Goldman not only survived, it flourished.

As the DailyKos sums up, “The normal scenario usually involves helping a nation hide a problem and sell its debt until the problem blows up into a bubble that bursts in a spectacular way…Goldman Sachs then puts their ‘man’ into a position of power to direct the bailouts so that Goldman gets all its money back and more, while the nation's economy gets gutted.”

For years, tinfoil hat crazies who’ve bookmarked Glenn Beck's websites and often appear as “experts” on Fox so-called News have warned us about a one-world government (here, here, and here). The latest threat, according to them, is Agenda 21 and the creation of a Soviet-style world authority that will confiscate private party everywhere, redistribute wealth to developing nations, and force us all to live by new global laws that sacrifice our national sovereignty. It’s totalitarian governments and not transnational corporations that we should be afraid of, they warn.

But when the tinfoil hat is removed, you can see that a sort of one-world government has already been established in a far more subtle form, through the rise of Goldman Sachs and their colleagues in the Wall Street elite.

A million questions arise when looking at what’s happening around the world. But many of these questions can be answered, once it’s acknowledged that Goldman Sachs alumni have executed a global coup d’etat.

Why are the working people of Greece, Portugal, Spain, and Italy suffering under austerity and being asked to sacrifice their pensions, their wages, and their jobs when, after five years, it’s clear these policies are only making these nations’ debts even harder to pay off?

It’s because Goldman Sachs is sucking the last remaining wealth out of those nations to recoup whatever failed investments they made before the Crash.

Why have thousands of homeowners in the United States turned to suicide, domestic violence, and even mass murder when faced with home foreclosure, when a simple solution like re-writing mortgages, which FDR did successfully during the Great Depression, could put an end to the bloodshed and misery?

It’s because re-writing mortgages would force banks like Goldman Sachs to take a hit. And thanks to the game they’ve created, they actually make more money when a home they own is foreclosed on.

Why, despite mountains of evidence, have banksters at Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street institutions not been thrown in jail for defrauding customers, manipulating LIBOR interest rates, and throwing thousands of Americans out of their homes illegally in a massive robo-signing scandal?

It’s because we have a two-tiered justice system in which those in power, like Goldman Sachs executives, get a slap on the wrist when they steal $50 billion, but people like you and me go to jail for stealing a 7-11 Slurpee.

Now does it make sense why Wall Street was bailed out and Main Street was sold out?

In this post-crash world, where agents of Goldman Sachs have infiltrated key positions of power all around the world, we must all fundamentally re-understand how we view the global economy and just how much effect our democratic institutions have on this economy.

We no longer have an economy geared to benefit working people around the world; we have an economy that’s geared to exploit working people for Goldman Sachs' profits. Trader Alessio Rastani told the BBC in September before Goldman’s Lucas Papademos was installed as Greece’s Prime Minister, “We don't really care about having a fixed economy, having a fixed situation, our job is to make money from it…Personally, I've been dreaming of this moment for three years. I go to bed every night and I dream of another recession.” Rastani continued, “When the market crashes... if you know what to do, if you have the right plan set up, you can make a lot of money from this.”

And as we’ve seen over the last decade, Goldman Sachs knows exactly what to do. They’ve had the right plan set-up, and it's nothing short of a global coup d’etat.

As Rastani bluntly told the BBC, “This is not a time right now for wishful thinking that governments are going to sort things out. The governments don't rule the world, Goldman Sachs rules the world.”

Copyright, Truthout. May not be reprinted without permission of the author.

Thom Hartmann is a New York Times bestselling Project Censored Award winning author and host of a nationally syndicated progressive radio talk show. Follow him on Twitter at @Thom_Hartmann.

Sam Sacks is a Progressive Commentator and former Democratic staffer on Capitol Hill. He is currently the Senior Producer of The Big Picture with Thom Hartmannairing weeknights at 7PM EST on RT and Free Speech TV. Follow him on Twitter at @SamSacks.


Washington. At best, it’s considered a revolving door for powerful individuals between Wall Street and the White House. At worst, it’s an economic coup that has been successful in infiltrating and subverting the United States federal government. What is it? The multi-national global banking syndicate known as Goldman Sachs. And more and more, its employees and the federal government’s employees are becoming one and the same.

In this Raymond Balze painting from the 1850's, Jesus chistises the 'money changers' in the Temple, and by doing so, a major tenent in the Christian faith is born.

Goldman Sachs and the White House

The following list was compiled by and published in May 2012. With a new Obama administration taking control after the first of the year, the below names will change somewhat. Many of the current White House staff and paid advisers will go back to their Wall Street firms, such as Goldman Sachs. While new Wall Street power players, many of the same individuals from previous Presidential administrations, will take their place.

What follows is a list of Goldman Sachs employees and paid agents who have moved over to positions in the Barack Obama White House. The second list below includes many additional Goldman Sachs employees who were hired by the Bush administration and were hold-overs into President Obama’s first term. The third and final list reflects the Goldman Sachs individuals who have moved on to positions at other global or foreign governments and institutions.

The Money Lenders

As we can see, and federal and state election disclosures confirm, Goldman Sachs has little or no loyalty to either the Republicans or the Democrats. The global bank is a major partner in administrations from both parties, contributes to both parties, and some would argue, controls both parties. This battle between the citizens of a country against the self-serving power and influence of the global banking cartel is not new. In fact, it’s been going on since Biblical times when Christianity banned ‘usury’ – the charging of interest on loans or debts.

For a detailed and historical recap, read the Whiteout Press Special Report, ‘The Illuminati’.

The following two historical quotes sum up the eternal struggle that still goes on today:

“Let me issue and control a nation’s money and I care not who writes the laws.” – Mayer Amschel Rothschild, 1790.

“History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling money and its issuance.” – James Madison, 4th President of the United States.

Showing that this eternal struggle - between those cursed with a sickness of unquenchable greed versus those they prey upon – is alive and well even today, the following list presents many of today’s individuals who’ve left their multi-million dollar positions at Goldman Sachs to take a powerful and influential roll inside the White House.

Naming Names – The List

*Note: A number of the below names reference 'The Hamilton Project', a Brookings Institute owned political and policy think tank and advisory organization.

From (May, 2012), listed in alphabetical order:

Goldman Sachs Personnel in the Barack Obama White House

Lael Brainard: Brainard is the United States Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs in the administration of Obama.

Gregory Craig: Former White House Counsel, Recently hired by Goldman Sachs.

Thomas Donilon: Deputy National Security Adviser (despite having a career that is mostly involved with domestic politics). Donilon was a lawyer at O’Melveny and Myers and made almost $4 million representing meltdown clients including Penny Pritzker (of Chicago) and Goldman Sachs.

William C. Dudley: President and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, partner and managing director at Goldman Sachs and was the firm’s chief U.S. economist for a decade.

Douglas Elmendorf: Obama Director of the Congressional Budget Office in January 2009, replaced Furman as Director of the Hamilton Project (Note that the Hamilton Project was funded by Robert Rubin and Goldman Sachs).

Rahm Emanuel: Obama Chief of Staff, on the payroll of Goldman Sachs receiving $3,000 per month from the firm to “introduce us to people", in the words of one Goldman Sachs partner at the time.

Dianna Farrell: Obama Administration: Deputy Director, National Economic Council. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Financial Analyst.

Stephen Friedman: Obama Administration: Chairman, President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Board Member (Chairman 1990-94; Director 2005).

Michael Frohman: Robert Rubin’s Chief of Staff while Rubin served as Secretary of the Treasury and an Obama “head hunter” according to “Rubin Proteges Change Their Tune as They Join Obama’s Team” in the New York Times.

Anne Fudge: Appointed to Obama budget deficit reduction committee. Fudge has been the PR craftsman for some of America’s largest corporations. She sits, according to the Washington Post, as a Trustee of the Brookings Institution within which the Hamilton Project is embedded.

Jason Furman: Directed economic policy for the Obama Presidential Campaign, served as the second Director of the Hamilton Project after Peter Orszag’s departure for the Obama administration.

Mark Gallogly: Sits on the Hamilton Project’s advisory council. He is also, according to Wikipedia, currently a member of President Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

Timothy Geithner: Secretary of the Treasury, former President of the New York Fed. a former managing director of Goldman Sachs.

Gary Gensler: Obama Administration: Commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Partner and Co-head of Finance.

Michael Greenstone: The 4th Director of the Hamilton Project. Just as attorney Craig went from advising Obama to defending Goldman Sachs against the SEC complaint, Greenstone has used the revolving door to go from an Obama economic adviser position to one of the Goldman Sachs outlets - in this case its think tank embedded in the Brookings Institution and funded by Goldman Sachs and Robert Rubin. All 3 previous Directors of the Hamilton Project work in the Obama administration.

Robert Hormats: Obama Administration: Undersecretary for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs, State Department. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Vice Chairman, Goldman Sachs Group.

Neel Kashkari: Served under Treasury Secretary Paulson (a former Goldman Sachs CEO) and was kept on by Obama after his inauguration for a limited period to work on TARP oversight. Former Vice President of Goldman Sachs in San Francisco where he led Goldman’s Information Technology Security Investment Banking practice.

Karen Kornbluh: (Sometimes called "Obama’s brain") Obama Ambassador to the OECD. Was Deputy Chief of Staff to 'Mr. Goldman Sachs', Robert Rubin.

Jacob "Jack" Lew: The United States Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources. According to Wikipedia, Lew sits on the Brookings-Rubin funded Hamilton Project Advisory Board. He also served with Robert Rubin in Bill Clinton’s cabinet as Director of OMB.

David Lipton: Now on Obama’s National Economic Council and the National Security Council. Lipton worked with Larry Summers and Timothy Geithner on the US response to the Asian financial crisis of the 1990’s. MergeFoundations reports that Lipton worked closely with Robert Rubin.

Emil Michael: White House Fellow. Former investment banker with Goldman Sachs.

Eric Mindich: Former chief strategy officer of New York-based Goldman Sachs, started Eton Park in 2004 with $3.5 billion, at the time one of the biggest hedge-fund launches ever. .....Hank Paulson Tipped Off The Goldman-Led "Plunge Protection Team" About Fannie Bankruptcy 7 Weeks In Advance (2007):  Goldman operative Eric Mindich in the hierarchy of the Asset Managers' committee of the President's Working Group on Capital Markets, better known of course as the PPT (in 2009).

Philip Murphy: Obama Administration: Ambassador to Germany. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Head of Goldman Sachs, Frankfurt.

Barack Obama: Obama owes his career to Goldman Sachs which was not only his biggest financial contributor when he ran for the Presidency, but was also his biggest contributor when he ran for the US Senate.

Peter Orszag: Obama Budget Director. Founding director of the Hamilton Project, funded by Goldman Sachs and Robert Rubin. Wikipedia indicates that Robert Rubin, Goldman’s ex-CEO, was one of Orszag’s mentors.

Mark Patterson: Obama Administration: Chief of Staff to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geitner. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Lobbyist 2005-2008; Vice President for Government Relations.

Mark Peterson: Chief of staff to Timothy Geithner. Goldman Sachs Vice President and lobbyist.

Steve Ratner: The shady billionaire financier who Obama appointed as his “car czar” and who resigned after it was revealed that his company, the Quadrangle Group, was apparently involved in “pay to play” for a billion dollars or so of New York State pension funds, and was under possible indictment by the New York AG and the SEC. Sits on the Advisory Council of the Goldman funded Hamilton Project.

Robert Reischauer: A member of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission from 2000-2009 and was its Vice Chair from 2001-2008. He too sits on the Hamilton Project’s advisory board.

Alice Rivlin: Obama named Alice Rivlin to his so-called Deficit Reduction Commission.

James Rubin: Son of Robert Rubin. Served as a 'headhunter' for Obama per the New York Times article, "Rubin Proteges Change Their Tune as They Join Obama’s Team".

Gene Sperling: Advisor to Timothy Geithner on bailouts. Sperling paid by Goldman Sachs for one year of consulting work.

Adam Storch: Obama Managing Executive of the Security and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement. Former Vice President in the Goldman Sachs Business Intelligence Group.

Larry Summers: Obama chief economic adviser and head of the National Economic Counsel. Worked under Robert Rubin at Goldman Sachs.

John Thain: Obama Administration: Advisor to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. Former Goldman Sachs Title: President and Chief Operating Officer (1999-2003).

Goldman Sachs personnel in the George W. Bush White House

Joshua Bolten: Bush II Administration: White House Chief of Staff (2006 – 2009). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Executive Director, Legal & Government Affairs (1994-1999).

William C Dudley: NY Federal Reserve: Current President/CEO. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Partner and Managing Director – 2007.

Edward C. Forst: Bush II Administration: Advisor on setting up TARP to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson 2008. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Co-head of Goldman’s investment management business.

Stephen Friedman: NY Federal Reserve: Former Chairman of the Board – 2009. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Board Member (Chairman, 1990-94; Director 2005-).

Gary Gensler: Bush II Administration: Undersecretary of the Treasury (1999-2001) and Assistant Secretary, Treasury (1997-1999). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Partner and Co-head of Finance.

Reuben Jeffery III: Bush II Administration: Under Secretary for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs, State Department (2007–2009). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Managing Partner, Paris until 2002 Security Investment Banking Practice.

Dan Jester: Bush II Administration: Advisor on setting up TARP to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson 2008. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Deputy CFO.

Neel Kashkari: Bush II Administration: Assistant Secretary for Financial Stability, Treasury (2008 – 2009). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Vice President, Goldman Sachs San Francisco; led Information Technology Security Investment Banking Practice.

Eric Mindich: Former chief strategy officer of New York-based Goldman Sachs. Started Eton Park in 2004 with $3.5 billion.

Henry Paulson: Bush II Administration: Secretary of the Treasury 2006 - 2009. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Chairman and CEO (1998-2006).

Robert Rubin: Bush II Administration: Secretary of the Treasury 1995-1999. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Vice Chairman (1987-1990).

Robert Steel: Bush II Administration: Under Secretary for Domestic Finance, Treasury (2006 – 2008). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Vice Chairman – 2004.

Steve Shafran: Bush II Administration: Advisor on setting up TARP to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson 2008. Former Goldman Sachs private equity business in Asia until 2000.

Kendrick R. Wilson III: Bush II Administration: Advisor on setting up TARP to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson 2008. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Chairman of Goldman’s financial institutions groups.

Robert Zoellick: Bush II Administration: United States Trade Representative (2001-2005), Deputy Secretary of State (2005-2006), World Bank President (2007 -). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Vice Chairman, International (2006-07).

Other Noteworthy Global Appointees

Mark Carney: Current Title: Governor, Bank of Canada. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Managing Director Goldman Sachs Canada until 2003.

Mario Draghi: Current Title: Governor of the Bank of Italy (2006- ). Former Goldman Sachs Title: European Deputy Chairman/Partner until 2006.

Edward Liddy: Current Title: AIG CEO. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Board Member (Chairman 1990-94; Director 2005- ).

Duncan Niederauer: Current Title: Chair/CEO NYSE. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Managing Director – 2007.

Romano Prodi: Current Title: Prime Minister of Italy (1996-1998 and 2006-2008) and President of the European Commission (1999-2004). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Paid adviser/consultant 1990 – 1993.

Massimo Tononi: Current Title: Italian Deputy Treasury Chief (2006-2008). Former Goldman Sachs Title: Partner 2004 – 2006.

Malcolm Turnbull: Current Title: Federal Leader, Liberal Party of Australia. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Partner (1998-2001).

David Watson: Current Title: Monetary Policy Committee, Bank of England. Former Goldman Sachs Title: Chief European economist.

The above list of names and their descriptions is reprinted in its entirety from

Do we really want the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) issuing our global currency

Ellen Brown

In an April 7 [2009] article in The London Telegraph titled “The G20 Moves the World a Step Closer to  a Global Currency,” Ambrose Evans-Pritchard wrote:

“A single clause in Point 19 of the communiqué issued by the G20 leaders amounts to revolution in the global financial order.

“‘We have agreed to support a general SDR allocation which will inject $250bn (£170bn) into the world economy and increase global liquidity,’ it said. SDRs are Special Drawing Rights, a synthetic paper currency issued by the International Monetary Fund that has lain dormant for half a century.

“In effect, the G20 leaders have activated the IMF’s power to create money and begin global ‘quantitative easing’. In doing so, they are putting a de facto world currency into play. It is outside the control of any sovereign body. Conspiracy theorists will love it.”

Indeed they will.  The article is subtitled, “The world is a step closer to a global currency, backed by a global central bank, running monetary policy for all humanity.”  Which naturally raises the question, who or what will serve as this global central bank, cloaked with the power to issue the global currency and police monetary policy for all humanity?  When the world’s central bankers met in Washington last September, they discussed what body might be in a position to serve in that awesome and fearful role.  A former governor of the Bank of England stated:

“[T]he answer might already be staring us in the face, in the form of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). . . . The IMF tends to couch its warnings about economic problems in very diplomatic language, but the BIS is more independent and much better placed to deal with this if it is given the power to do so.”1

And if the vision of a global currency outside government control does not set off conspiracy theorists, putting the BIS in charge of it surely will.  The BIS has been scandal-ridden ever since it was branded with pro-Nazi leanings in the 1930s.  Founded in Basel, Switzerland, in 1930, the BIS has been called “the most exclusive, secretive, and powerful supranational club in the world.”  Charles Higham wrote in his book Trading with the Enemy that by the late 1930s, the BIS had assumed an openly pro-Nazi bias, a theme that was expanded on in a BBC Timewatch film titled “Banking with Hitler” broadcast in 1998.2  In 1944, the American government backed a resolution at the Bretton-Woods Conference calling for the liquidation of the BIS, following Czech accusations that it was laundering gold stolen by the Nazis from occupied Europe; but the central bankers succeeded in quietly snuffing out the American resolution.3

Modest beginnings, BIS Office, Hotel Savoy-Univers, Basel

First Annual General Meeting, 1931

In Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World in Our Time (1966), Dr. Carroll Quigley revealed the key role played in global finance by the BIS behind the scenes.  Dr. Quigley was Professor of History at Georgetown University, where he was President Bill Clinton’s mentor.  He was also an insider, groomed by the powerful clique he called “the international bankers.”  His credibility is heightened by the fact that he actually espoused their goals.  He wrote:

“I know of the operations of this network because I have studied it for twenty years and was permitted for two years, in the early 1960?s, to examine its papers and secret records. I have no aversion to it or to most of its aims and have, for much of my life, been close to it and to many of its instruments. . . . [I]n general my chief difference of opinion is that it wishes to remain unknown, and I believe its role in history is significant enough to be known.”

Quigley wrote of this international banking network:

“[T]he powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole.  This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences.  The apex of the system was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world’s central banks which were themselves private corporations.”

The key to their success, said Quigley, was that the international bankers would control and manipulate the money system of a nation while letting it appear to be controlled by the government.  The statement echoed one made in the eighteenth century by the patriarch of what would become the most powerful banking dynasty in the world.  Mayer Amschel Bauer Rothschild famously said in 1791:

“Allow me to issue and control a nation’s currency, and I care not who makes its laws.”

Mayer’s five sons were sent to the major capitals of Europe – London, Paris, Vienna, Berlin and Naples – with the mission of establishing a banking system that would be outside government control.  The economic and political systems of nations would be controlled not by citizens but by bankers, for the benefit of bankers.  Eventually, a privately-owned “central bank” was established in nearly every country; and this central banking system has now gained control over the economies of the world.  Central banks have the authority to print money in their respective countries, and it is from these banks that governments must borrow money to pay their debts and fund their operations.  The result is a global economy in which not only industry but government itself runs on “credit” (or debt) created by a banking monopoly headed by a network of private central banks; and at the top of this network is the BIS, the “central bank of central banks” in Basel.

Behind the Curtain

For many years the BIS kept a very low profile, operating behind the scenes in an abandoned hotel.  It was here that decisions were reached to devalue or defend currencies, fix the price of gold, regulate offshore banking, and raise or lower short-term interest rates.  In 1977, however, the BIS gave up its anonymity in exchange for more efficient headquarters.  The new building has been described as “an eighteen story-high circular skyscraper that rises above the medieval city like some misplaced nuclear reactor.”  It quickly became known as the “Tower of Basel.”  Today the BIS has governmental immunity, pays no taxes, and has its own private police force.4  It is, as Mayer Rothschild envisioned, above the law.

The BIS is now composed of 55 member nations, but the club that meets regularly in Basel is a much smaller group; and even within it, there is a hierarchy.  In a 1983 article in Harper’s Magazine called “Ruling the World of Money,” Edward Jay Epstein wrote that where the real business gets done is in “a sort of inner club made up of the half dozen or so powerful central bankers who find themselves more or less in the same monetary boat” – those from Germany, the United States, Switzerland, Italy, Japan and England.  Epstein said:

“The prime value, which also seems to demarcate the inner club from the rest of the BIS members, is the firm belief that central banks should act independently of their home governments. . . . A second and closely related belief of the inner club is that politicians should not be trusted to decide the fate of the international monetary system.”

In 1974, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision was created by the central bank Governors of the Group of Ten nations (now expanded to twenty).  The BIS provides the twelve-member Secretariat for the Committee.  The Committee, in turn, sets the rules for banking globally, including capital requirements and reserve controls.  In a 2003 article titled “The Bank for International Settlements Calls for Global Currency,” Joan Veon wrote:

“The BIS is where all of the world’s central banks meet to analyze the global economy and determine what course of action they will take next to put more money in their pockets, since they control the amount of money in circulation and how much interest they are going to charge governments and banks for borrowing from them. . . .

“When you understand that the BIS pulls the strings of the world’s monetary system, you then understand that they have the ability to create a financial boom or bust in a country.  If that country is not doing what the money lenders want, then all they have to do is sell its currency.”5

The Controversial Basel Accords

The power of the BIS to make or break economies was demonstrated in 1988, when it issued a Basel Accord raising bank capital requirements from 6% to 8%.  By then, Japan had emerged as the world’s largest creditor; but Japan’s banks were less well capitalized than other major international banks.  Raising the capital requirement forced them to cut back on lending, creating a recession in Japan like that suffered in the U.S. today.  Property prices fell and loans went into default as the security for them shriveled up.  A downward spiral followed, ending with the total bankruptcy of the banks.  The banks had to be nationalized, although that word was not used in order to avoid criticism.6

Among other collateral damage produced by the Basel Accords was a spate of suicides among Indian farmers unable to get loans.  The BIS capital adequacy standards required loans to private borrowers to be “risk-weighted,” with the degree of risk determined by private rating agencies; and farmers and small business owners could not afford the agencies’ fees.  Banks therefore assigned 100 percent risk to the loans, and then resisted extending credit to these “high-risk” borrowers because more capital was required to cover the loans.  When the conscience of the nation was aroused by the Indian suicides, the government, lamenting the neglect of farmers by commercial banks, established a policy of ending the “financial exclusion” of the weak; but this step had little real effect on lending practices, due largely to the strictures imposed by the BIS from abroad.7

Similar complaints have come from Korea.  An article in the December 12, 2008 Korea Times titled “BIS Calls Trigger Vicious Cycle” described how Korean entrepreneurs with good collateral cannot get operational loans from Korean banks, at a time when the economic downturn requires increased investment and easier credit:

“‘The Bank of Korea has provided more than 35 trillion won to banks since September when the global financial crisis went full throttle,’ said a Seoul analyst, who declined to be named.  ‘But the effect is not seen at all with the banks keeping the liquidity in their safes.  They simply don’t lend and one of the biggest reasons is to keep the BIS ratio high enough to survive,’ he said. . . .

“Chang Ha-joon, an economics professor at Cambridge University, concurs with the  analyst. ‘What banks do for their own interests, or to improve the BIS ratio, is against the interests of the whole society.  This is a bad idea,’ Chang said in a recent telephone interview with Korea Times.”

In a May 2002 article in The Asia Times titled “Global Economy: The BIS vs. National Banks,” economist Henry C K Liu observed that the Basel Accords have forced national banking systems “to march to the same tune, designed to serve the needs of highly sophisticated global financial markets, regardless of the developmental needs of their national economies.”  He wrote:

“[N]ational banking systems are suddenly thrown into the rigid arms of the Basel Capital Accord sponsored by the Bank of International Settlement (BIS), or to face the penalty of usurious risk premium in securing international interbank loans. . . . National policies suddenly are subjected to profit incentives of private financial institutions, all members of a hierarchical system controlled and directed from the money center banks in New York. The result is to force national banking systems to privatize . . . .

“BIS regulations serve only the single purpose of strengthening the international private banking system, even at the peril of national economies. . . . The IMF and the international banks regulated by the BIS are a team: the international banks lend recklessly to borrowers in emerging economies to create a foreign currency debt crisis, the IMF arrives as a carrier of monetary virus in the name of sound monetary policy, then the international banks come as vulture investors in the name of financial rescue to acquire national banks deemed capital inadequate and insolvent by the BIS.”

Ironically, noted Liu, developing countries with their own natural resources did not actually need the foreign investment that trapped them in debt to outsiders:

“Applying the State Theory of Money [which assumes that a sovereign nation has the power to issue its own money], any government can fund with its own currency all its domestic developmental needs to maintain full employment without inflation.”

When governments fall into the trap of accepting loans in foreign currencies, however, they become “debtor nations” subject to IMF and BIS regulation.  They are forced to divert their production to exports, just to earn the foreign currency necessary to pay the interest on their loans.  National banks deemed “capital inadequate” have to deal with strictures comparable to the “conditionalities” imposed by the IMF on debtor nations: “escalating capital requirement, loan writeoffs and liquidation, and restructuring through selloffs, layoffs, downsizing, cost-cutting and freeze on capital spending.”  Liu wrote:

“Reversing the logic that a sound banking system should lead to full employment and developmental growth, BIS regulations demand high unemployment and developmental degradation in national economies as the fair price for a sound global private banking system.”

The Last Domino to Fall

While banks in developing nations were being penalized for falling short of the BIS capital requirements, large international banks managed to escape the rules, although they actually carried enormous risk because of their derivative exposure.  The mega-banks succeeded in avoiding the Basel rules by separating the “risk” of default out from the loans and selling it off to investors, using a form of derivative known as “credit default swaps.”

However, it was not in the game plan that U.S. banks should escape the BIS net.  When they managed to sidestep the first Basel Accord, a second set of rules was imposed known as Basel II.  The new rules were established in 2004, but they were not levied on U.S. banks until November 2007, the month after the Dow passed 14,000 to reach its all-time high.  It has been all downhill from there.  Basel II had the same effect on U.S. banks that Basel I had on Japanese banks: they have been struggling ever since to survive.8

Basel II requires banks to adjust the value of their marketable securities to the “market price” of the security, a rule called “mark to market.”9  The rule has theoretical merit, but the problem is timing: it was imposed ex post facto, after the banks already had the hard-to-market assets on their books.  Lenders that had been considered sufficiently well capitalized to make new loans suddenly found they were insolvent.  At least, they would have been insolvent if they had tried to sell their assets, an assumption required by the new rule.  Financial analyst John Berlau complained:

“The crisis is often called a ‘market failure,’ and the term ‘mark-to-market’ seems to reinforce that. But the mark-to-market rules are profoundly anti-market and hinder the free-market function of price discovery. . . . In this case, the accounting rules fail to allow the market players to hold on to an asset if they don’t like what the market is currently fetching, an important market action that affects price discovery in areas from agriculture to antiques.”10

Imposing the mark-to-market rule on U.S. banks caused an instant credit freeze, which proceeded to take down the economies not only of the U.S. but of countries worldwide.  In early April 2009, the mark-to-market rule was finally softened by the U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB); but critics said the modification did not go far enough, and it was done in response to pressure from politicians and bankers, not out of any fundamental change of heart or policies by the BIS.

And that is where the conspiracy theorists come in.  Why did the BIS not retract or at least modify Basel II after seeing the devastation it had caused?  Why did it sit idly by as the global economy came crashing down?  Was the goal to create so much economic havoc that the world would rush with relief into the waiting arms of the BIS with its privately-created global currency?  The plot thickens . . . .

Ellen Brown developed her research skills as an attorney practicing civil litigation in Los Angeles. In Web of Debt, her latest book, she turns those skills to an analysis of the Federal Reserve and “the money trust.” She shows how this private cartel has usurped the power to create money from the people themselves, and how we the people can get it back. Her earlier books focused on the pharmaceutical cartel that gets its power from “the money trust.” Her eleven books include Forbidden Medicine, Nature’s Pharmacy (co-authored with Dr. Lynne Walker), and The Key to Ultimate Health (co-authored with Dr. Richard Hansen). Her websites are and


1.  Andrew Marshall, “The Financial New World Order: Towards a Global Currency and World Government,” Global Research (April 6, 2009).

 2  Alfred Mendez, “The Network,” The World Central Bank: The Bank for International Settlements,

 3  “BIS – Bank of International Settlement: The Mother of All Central Banks,” (2009).        

 4  Ibid.

 5  Joan Veon, “The Bank for International Settlements Calls for Global Currency,” News with Views (August 26, 2003).      

 6  Peter Myers, “The 1988 Basle Accord – Destroyer of Japan’s Finance System,”  (updated September 9, 2008).

 7  Nirmal Chandra, “Is Inclusive Growth Feasible in Neoliberal India?”, (September 2008).

 8  Bruce Wiseman, “The Financial Crisis: A look Behind the Wizard’s Curtain,” Canada Free Press (March 19, 2009).

 9  See Ellen Brown, “Credit Where Credit Is Due,”  (January 11, 2009).

 10 John Berlau, “The International Mark-to-market Contagion,” (October 10, 2008).

Something has just happened which got hardly any attention in the media, but which is very important.   The recent setting up by China of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank may not seem likely to excite the passions, but it should.   For this is clearly an intention by the big Asian powers to challenge the World Bank and the IMF which have been the cornerstone of Western (for which read US) domination of the global economy since Bretton Woods in 1944 and the main deliverers of the so-called ‘Washington consensus’.   It is equally significant that several of Washington’s European allies, led by Britain, have signed up to become founding members of the new bank, despite vigorous US  lobbying to stop them joining.  France, Germany and Italy have also now joined up, and Australia and South Korea are also now thought likely to join.   This unprecedented desertion of the US approach by its key allies has left Washington scrambling to recover from a major setback.   But the immediate signs are that it’s not succeeding.

Jack Lew, the US Treasury secretary, has been forced to go to Congress to plead with the Republican majority to drop their opposition to IMF reforms which would give China and other emerging powers a greater voice in the Fund.   He stated that if the reforms were not accepted when “our international credibility and influence are being threatened”, there will be “a loss of US influence and our ability to shape international norms and practices”.   Republican intransigence may well block the Obama team’s initiative.

So why did the UK, which usually kowtows to all US demands and was recently described by a Beijing thinktank as “America’s thug for hire”, step out of line?   Following Lew’s line that the US is concerned that the new bank will not live up to the ‘highest global standards’, Osborne said the UK was joining up to ensure that the bank was ethical, transparent and efficient (!).   How he has the gall to utter such platitudes in the light of a decade of monstrous corruption by Britain’s Big 4 banks is beyond satire.   But of course such weasel declarations have nothing to do with the truth.   The most obvious reason is that Osborne wanted to make the City of London a prime offshore financial centre for China and the renminbi.   Whether Osborne succeeds in the light of still raw Chinese memories of the opium wars, the history of gunboat diplomacy and the legacy of Britain’s ‘unequal treaties’ and colonial subjugation in China, is another matter.

There are good reasons for the proposed World Bank reforms.   Presently China has just 3.8% of voting rights though it control 16% of global output.   The rules and norms that have governed international relations since the 1940s were made in Washington’s image , and unsurprisingly China objects to norms made then which still allow the US to police Asian waters vital to China’s interests.   Even if reform is blocked in the US Congress for the present, in the medium term it is inevitable.   A recognition of the real reasons for that by the West, as opposed to empty platitudes, would be helpful and the best way to ensure that this major transition in world affairs is carried through with least disadvantage to the old US-UK powers.


We are constantly being told that 2014 is the centenary of the start of the First World War, but rather less – or indeed nothing at all – is being made of the fact that this year is also the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the IMF and World Bank.   That is more than a pity because both these institutions are redolent of the Washington Consensus, the darker side of US foreign policy, and the domination of the Western countries over the former colonies and the emergent economies, all of which are now under profound challenge and being forced to give way to new structures of power.   And as neo-liberalism has become increasingly volatile and toxic under the impact of financialised capitalism over the last three decades, it has become more and more clear that a new model of global governance is needed that fits these new constellations of power.   It would also be helpful if Labour, which has so far concentrated exclusively on domestic issues, could extend its reach by highlighting how its domestic vision of the realignment of corporate power should apply also within the world community.

Certainly the record of the IMF and World Bank has been abysmal.   They have consistently supported corrupt and dictatorial regimes so long as they served Western interests – in the Congo, Rwanda, Indonesia, Philippines, Tunisia and Egypt.   They used their resources and power to undermine and destroy outbreaks of democracy – Mossadegh in Iran, Arbenz in Guatemala, Goulart in Brazil, the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, Allende in Chile, and many others.   When countries, despite the efforts of the IMF and World, nevertheless gained their independence in the 1950-60s, they forced these fledgeling independent states to repay the odious debts contracted by the previous authoritarian and corrupt regimes.

They continued to provide financial back-up to countries like apartheid South Africa and Portugal in their suppression of the countries and races they controlled whether in Africa or the Pacific.   In terms of the environment and climate change, they overwhelmingly backed the fossil fuel industries and multinational exploitation of indigenous resources in the newly independent developing countries.   The World Bank financed projects that flagrantly violated human rights such as the enforced displacement of populations in Indonesia.   And their signature policy, the liberalisation of capital flows, has paved the way for the current industrial-level tax avoidance, extensive corruption, and abrupt flight of capital that is so badly damaging emerging markets.

So what should be done?   What is needed is an alternative to the World Bank that allows regionalised banks in different continents, particularly in the South, to supply very low interest loans or grants to emerging economies on condition that they observe strict social, employment and environmental standards and respect fundamental human rights.   Equally the IMF should be transformed to its real mandate to ensure currency stability, replace its neoliberal dogma with a genuine developmental model, and coordinate international action to crack down on tax havens and tax avoidance in all its forms.


The big problem, the very big problem indeed, for capitalism at its present stage is that demand is flat or falling.   That underlying pattern has existed for the last 40 years since the demand for continent-wide reconstruction after the Second World War gradually petered out in the 1970s.   Thereafter the flatness of demand was to some extent hidden by the acceleration of global arms expenditure in the Cold War as well as by the world-scale development in technology applying to cars, planes and computers.   The unipolar power of the US as the world’s hegemon plus the paucity of technological breakthroughs with worldwide industrial application have left a growing vacuum of demand sufficient to power a global capitalism that depends on it.   That comparative vacuum which was met by the enormous explosion of debt in the 1990-2000s, and which led directly to the global financial crash of 2008-9, is once again being met by the huge expansion of debt which cannot conceivably be sustained long-term.

The one relatively bright spot last time round was China.   Its growth rate fell, but was still strong by Western economy standards.   Now however China is joining other nations propelled by debt-fuelled growth.   Total bank and other-financial lending in China hit almost 200% of GDP in 2012, well on the way to doubling since the 125% level in 2008.   Moreover the debt is growing twice as fast as the economy.   That kind of debt-laden growth can survive for some time, but sooner rather than later will hit the buffers because the level of debt cannot be paid down.

Next, Europe.  Lombard Research has found that EU banks are more or less insolvent and only survive because of Draghi’s famous commitment to do ‘whateve it takes’ to preserve the euro.   That has meant providing unlimited liquidity to the EU banks.   This again is not a long-term tenable position because the EU banks’ liabilities exposure is 350% of EU GDP (compared, say, to only 80% for US banks in relation to US GDP).   Moreover the eurozone banks are not only highly leveraged, but are still expanding their balance sheets and making little effort to recapitalise.

Then there is what the Director of Financial Stability at the Bank of England has termed “the biggest bond bubble in history”.   This is the flip-side of the government pumping £375bn of electronic money (QE) into the UK economy over the last 4 years.   If that colossal bubble were to deflate in a rapid or disorderly fashion – signs of which were apparent when Bernanke at the US Federal Reserve indicated he might begin to reduce the QE stimulus – the consequences would be catastrophic.   What makes these risks even worse is the further bubble created by Osborne’s insane help-to-buy mortgage guarantee scheme.

What is needed, but no political leader will talk about, is not the further magnification of already gigantic financial bubbles, but rather the release of the suppressed demand caused by decades of squeezing wages and the ideological taboo at the centre of neoliberal capitalism against any use of Keynesian demand stimulus.

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts and The Saker

I had been wanting to interview Paul Craig Roberts for a long time already. For many years I have been following his writings and interviews and every time I read what he had to say I was hoping that one day I would have the privilege do interview him about the nature of the US deep state and the Empire. Recently, I emailed him and asked for such an interview, and he very kindly agreed. I am very grateful to him for this opportunity.

The Saker

The Saker:  It has become rather obvious to many, if not most, people that the USA is not a democracy or a republic, but rather a plutocracy run by a small elite which some call “the 1%”.  Others speak of the “deep state”.  So my first question to you is the following.  Could you please take the time to assess the influence and power of each of the following entities one by one.  In particular, can you specify for each of the following whether it has a decision-making “top” position, or a decision-implementing “middle” position in the real structure of power (listed in no specific order)

Federal Reserve

Big Banking


Council on Foreign Relations

Skull & Bones


Goldman Sachs and top banks

“Top 100 families” (Rothschild, Rockefeller, Dutch Royal Family, British Royal Family, etc.)

Israel Lobby

Freemasons and their lodges

Big Business: Big Oil, Military Industrial Complex, etc.

Other people or organizations not listed above?

Who, which group, what entity would you consider is really at the apex of power in the current US polity?

Paul Craig Roberts: The US is ruled by private interest groups and by the neoconservative ideology that History has chosen the US as the “exceptional and indispensable” country with the right and responsibility to impose its will on the world.

In my opinion the most powerful of the private interest groups are:

The Military/security Complex

The 4 or 5 mega-sized “banks too big to fail” and Wall Street

The Israel Lobby


The Extractive industries (oil, mining, timber).

The interests of these interest groups coincide with those of the neoconservatives. The neoconservative ideology supports American financial and military-political imperialism or hegemony.

There is no independent American print or TV media.  In the last years of the Clinton regime, 90% of the print and TV media was concentrated in 6 mega-companies.  During the Bush regime, National Public Radio lost its independence.  So the media functions as a Ministry of Propaganda.

Both political parties, Republicans and Democrats, are dependent on the same private interest groups for campaign funds, so both parties dance to the same masters.  Jobs offshoring destroyed the manufacturing and industrial unions and deprived the Democrats of Labor Union political contributions. In those days, Democrats represented the working people and Republicans represented business.

The Federal Reserve is there for the banks, mainly the large ones.The Federal Reserve was created as lender of last resort to prevent banks from failing because of runs on the bank or withdrawal of deposits.  The New York Fed, which conducts the financial interventions, has a board that consists of the executives of the big banks.  The last  three Federal Reserve chairmen have been Jews, and the current vice chairman is the former head of the Israeli central bank. Jews are prominent in the financial sector, for example, Goldman Sachs.  In recent years, the US Treasury Secretaries and heads of the financial regulatory agencies have mainly been the bank executives responsible for the fraud and excessive debt leverage that set off the last financial crisis.

In the 21st century, the Federal Reserve and Treasury have served only the interests of the large banks.  This has been at the expense of the economy and the population. For example, retired people have had no interest income for eight years in order that the financial institutions can borrow at zero costs and make money.

No matter how rich some families are, they cannot compete with powerful interest groups such as the military/security complex or Wall Street and the banks.  Long established wealth can look after its interests, and some, such as the Rockefellers,  have activist foundations that most likely work hand in hand with the National Endowment for Democracy to fund and encourage various pro-American non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in countries that the US wants to influence or overthrow, such as occurred in Ukraine.  The NGOs are essentially US Fifth Columns and operate under such names as “human rights,” “democracy,” etc.  A Chinese professor told me that the Rockefeller Foundation had created an American University in China and is used to organize various anti-regime Chinese.  At one time, and perhaps still, there were hundreds of US and German financed NGOs in Russia, possibly as many as 1,000.

I don’t know if the Bilderbergs do the same.  Possibly they are just very rich people and have their proteges in governments who try to protect their interests.  I have never seen any signs of Bilderbergs or Masons or Rothchilds affecting congressional or executive branch decisions.

On the other hand, the Council for Foreign Relations is influential.  The council consists of former government policy officials and academics involved in foreign policy and international relations.  The council’s publication, Foreign Affairs, is the premier foreign policy forum.  Some journalists are also members. When I was proposed for membership in the 1980s, I was blackballed.

Skull & Bones is a Yale University secret fraternity.  A number of universities have such secret fraternities.  For example, the University of Virginia has one, and the University of Georgia.  These fraternities do not have secret governmental plots or ruling powers.  Their influence would be limited to the personal influence of the members, who tend to be sons of elite families.  In my opinion, these fraternities exist to convey elite status to members.  They have no operational functions.

The Saker:  What about individuals?  Who are, in your opinion, the most powerful people in the USA today?  Who takes the final, top level, strategic decision?

Paul Craig Roberts:  There really are no people powerful in themselves.  Powerful people are ones that powerful interest groups are behind.  Ever since Secretary of Defense William Perry privatized so much of the military in 1991, the military/security complex has been  extremely powerful, and its power is further amplified by its ability to finance political campaigns and by the fact that it is a source of employment in many states. Essentially Pentagon expenditures are controlled by defense contractors.

The Saker:  I have always believed that in international terms, organizations such as NATO, the EU or all the others are only a front, and that the real alliance which controls the planet are the ECHELON countries: US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand aka “AUSCANNZUKUS” (they are also referred to as the “Anglosphere” or the “Five Eyes”) with the US and the UK are the senior partners while Canada, Australia and New Zealand are the junior partners here.  Is this model correct?

Paul Craig Roberts: NATO was a US creation allegedly to protect Europe from a Soviet invasion.  Its purpose expired in 1991.  Today NATO provides cover for US aggression and provides mercenary forces for the American Empire.  Britain, Canada, Australia, are simply US vassal states just as are Germany, France, Italy, Japan and the rest.  There are no partners; just vassals.  It is Washington’s empire, no one else’s.

The US favors the EU, because it is easier to control than the individual countries.

The Saker:  It is often said that Israel controls the USA.  Chomsky, and others, say that it is the USA which controls Israel.  How would you characterize the relationship between Israel and the USA – does the dog wag the tail or does the tail wag the dog?  Would you say that the Israel Lobby is in total control of the USA or are there still other forces capable of saying “no” to the Israel Lobby and impose their own agenda?

Paul Craig Roberts:  I have never seen any evidence that the US controls Israel.  All the evidence is that Israel controls the US, but only its MidEast policy.  In recent years, Israel or the Israel Lobby, has been able to control or block academic appointments in the US and tenure for professors considered to be critics of Israel.  Israel has successfully reached into both Catholic and State universities to block tenure and appointments.  Israel can also block some presidential appointments and has vast influence over the print and TV media.  The Israel Lobby also has plenty of money for political campaign funds and never fails to unseat US Representatives and Senators considered critical of Israel.  The Israel lobby was able to reach into the black congressional district of Cynthia McKinney, a black woman, and defeat her reelection.  As Admiral Tom Moorer, Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said: “No American President can stand up to Israel.”  Adm. Moorer could not even get an official investigation of Israel’s deadly attack on the USS Liberty in 1967.

Anyone who criticizes Israeli policies even in a helpful way is labeled an “anti-Semite.”

In American politics, media, and universities, this is a death-dealing blow.  You might as well get hit with a hellfire missile.

The Saker:  Which of the 12 entities of power which I listed above have, in your opinion, played a key role in the planning and execution of the 9/11 “false flag” operation?  After all, it is hard to imagine that this was planned and prepared between the inauguration of GW Bush and September 11th – it must have been prepared during the years of the Clinton Administration.  Is it not true the the Oklahoma City bombing was a rehearsal for 9/11?

Paul Craig Roberts: In my opinion 9/11 was the product of the neoconservatives, almost all of whom are Jewish, Dick Cheney, and Israel.  Its purpose was to provide “the new Pearl Harbor” that the neoconservatives said was necessary to launch their wars of conquest in the Middle East.  I don’t know how far back it was planned, but Silverstein was obviously part of it and he had not had the WTC for very long before 9/11.

As for the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, US Air Force General Partin, the Air Force’s munitions expert,  prepared an expert report proving beyond all doubt that the building blew up from the inside out and that the truck bomb was cover.  Congress and the media ignored his report.  The patsy, McVeigh,  was already set up, and that was the only story allowed.

The Saker:  Do you think that the people who run the USA today realize that they are on a collision course with Russia which could lead to thermonuclear war?  If yes, why would they take such a risk? Do they really believe that at the last moment Russian will “blink” and back down, or do they actually believe that they can win a nuclear war?  Are they not afraid that in a nuclear conflagration with Russia they will lose everything they have, including their power and even their lives?

Paul Craig Roberts: I am as puzzled as much as you.  I think Washington is lost in hubris and arrogance and is more or less insane.  Also, there is belief that the US can win a nuclear war with Russia.  There was an article in Foreign Affairs around 2005 or 2006 in which this conclusion was reached.  The belief in the winnability of nuclear war has been boosted by faith in ABM defenses.  The argument is that the US can hit Russia so hard in a preemptive first strike that Russia would not retaliate in fear of a second blow.

The Saker:  How do you assess the current health of the Empire?  For many years we have seen clear signs of decline, but there is still not visible collapse.  Do you believe that such a collapse is inevitable and, if not, how could it be prevented?  Will we see the day when the US Dollar suddenly become worthless or will another mechanism precipitate the collapse of this Empire?

Paul Craig Roberts:  The US economy is hollowed out.  There has been no real median family income growth for decades.  Alan Greenspan as Fed Chairman used an expansion of consumer credit to take the place of the missing growth in consumer income, but the population is now too indebted to take on more.  So there is nothing to drive the economy.  So many manufacturing and tradable professional service jobs such as software engineering have been moved offshore that the middle class has shrunk.  University graduates cannot get jobs that support an independent existence.  So they can’t form households, buy houses, appliances and home furnishings.  The government produces low inflation measures by not measuring inflation and low unemployment rates by not measuring unemployment.  The financial markets are rigged, and gold is driven down despite rising demand by selling uncovered shorts in the futures market.  It is a house of cards that has stood longer than I thought possible.  Apparently, the house of cards can stand until the rest of the world ceases to hold the US dollar as reserves.

Possibly the empire has put too much stress on Europe by involving Europe in a conflict with Russia.  If Germany, for example, were to pull out of NATO, the empire would collapse, or if Russia can find the wits to finance Greece, Italy, and Spain in exchange for them leaving the Euro and EU, the empire would suffer a fatal blow.

Alternatively, Russia might tell Europe that Russia has no alternative but to target European capitals with nuclear weapons now that Europe has joined the US in conducting war against Russia.

The Saker:  Russia and China have done something unique in history and they have gone beyond the traditional model of forming an alliance: they have agreed to become interdependent – one could say that they have agreed to a symbiotic relationship.  Do you believe that those in charge of the Empire have understood the tectonic change which has just happen or are they simply going into deep denial because reality scares them too much?

Paul Craig Roberts:  Stephen Cohen says that there is simply no foreign policy discussion.  There is no debate.  I think the empire thinks that it can destabilize Russia and China and that is one reason Washington has color revolutions working in Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. As Washington is determined to prevent the rise of other powers and is lost in hubris and arrogance, Washington probably believes that it will succeed.  After all, History chose Washington.

The Saker:  In your opinion, do presidential elections still matter and, if yes, what is your best hope for 2016?  I am personally very afraid of Hillary Clinton whom I see as an exceptionally dangerous and outright evil person, but with the current Neocon influence inside the Republican, can we really hope for a non-Neocon candidate to win the GOP nomination?

Paul Craig Roberts:  The only way a presidential election could matter would be if the elected president had behind him a strong movement.  Without a movement, the president has no independent power and no one to appoint who will do his bidding.  Presidents are captives.  Reagan had something of a movement, just enough that we were able to cure stagflation despite Wall Street’s opposition and we were able to end the cold war despite the opposition of the CIA and the military/security complex.  Plus Reagan was very old and came from a long time ago.  He assumed the office of the president was powerful and acted that way.

The Saker:  What about the armed forces?  Can you imagine a Chairman of the JCS saying “no, Mr President, that is crazy, we will not do this” or do you expect the generals to obey any order, including one starting a nuclear war against Russia?  Do you have any hope that the US military could step in and stop the “crazies” currently in power in the White House and Congress?

Paul Craig Roberts:  The US military is a creature of the armaments industries.  The whole purpose of making general is to be qualified to be a consultant to the “defense” industry, or to become an executive or on the board of a “defense” contractor.  The military serves as the source of retirement careers when the generals make the big money.  The US military is totally corrupt.  Read Andrew Cockburn’s book, Kill Chain.

The Saker:  If the USA is really deliberately going down the path towards war with Russia – what should Russia do?  Should Russia back down and accept to be subjugated as a preferable option to a thermonuclear war, or should Russia resist and thereby accept the possibility of a thermonuclear war?  Do you believe that a very deliberate and strong show of strength on the part of Russia could deter a US attack?

Paul Craig Roberts: I have often wondered about this.  I can’t say that I know.  I think Putin is humane enough to surrender rather than to be part of the destruction of the world, but Putin has to answer to others inside Russia and I doubt the nationalists would stand for surrender.

In my opinion, I think Putin should focus on Europe and make Europe aware that Russia expects an American attack and will have no choice except to wipe out Europe in response.  Putin should encourage Europe to break off from NATO in order to prevent World War 3.

Putin should also make sure China understands that China represents the same perceived threat to the US as Russia and that the two countries need to stand together.  Perhaps if Russia and China were to maintain their forces on a nuclear alert, not the top one, but an elevated one that conveyed recognition of the American threat and conveyed this threat to the world, the US could be isolated.

Perhaps if the Indian press, the Japanese Press, the French and German press, the UK press, the Chinese and Russian press began reporting that Russia and China wonder if they will receive a pre-emptive nuclear attack from Washington the result would be to prevent the attack.

As far as I can tell from my many media interviews with the Russian media, there is no Russian awareness of the Wolfowitz Doctrine. Russians think that there is some kind of misunderstanding about Russian intentions.  The Russian media does not understand that Russia is unacceptable, because Russia is not a US vassal. Russians believe all the Western bullshit about “freedom and democracy” and believe that they are short on both but making progress.  In other words, Russians have no idea that they are targeted for destruction.

The Saker:  What are, in your opinion, the roots of the hatred of so many members of the US elites for Russia?  Is that just a leftover from the Cold War, or is there another reason for the almost universal russophobia amongst US elites?  Even during the Cold War, it was unclear whether the US was anti-Communist or anti-Russian?  Is there something in the Russian culture, nation or civilization which triggers that hostility and, if yes, what is it?

Paul Craig Roberts: The hostility toward Russia goes back to the Wolfowttz Doctrine:

“Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power.”

While the US was focused on its MidEast wars, Putin restored Russia and blocked  Washington’s planned invasion of Syria and bombing of Iran.  The “first objective” of the neocon doctrine was breached.  Russia had to be brought into line.  That is the origin of Washington’s attack on Russia.  The dependent and captive US and European media simply repeats “the Russian Threat” to the public, which is insouciant and otherwise uninformed.

The offense of Russian culture is also there–Christian morals, respect for law and humanity, diplomacy in place of coercion, traditional social mores–but these are in the background.  Russia is hated because Russia (and China) is a check on Washington’s unilateral uni-power.  This check is what will lead to war.

If the Russians and Chinese do not expect a pre-emptive nuclear attack from Washington, they will be destroyed.


Let's take them one by one -- and on the way you will learn all the tricks of Central Bank theft from the real domestic economy of nations with all-borrowed money supplies and monetary authorities who serve the moneyed interests at the expenses of everyone else.

I. Janet Yellen (Fed Chair 2014-present) In the midst of the present real economy's deflationary depression, she is increasing the Fed's discount rate for lending to banks making it more expensive and risky to lend near the limit the reserve requirement permits -- final effects fewer loans outstanding (less money in consumers' hands) and a bigger "outflow" of interest payments to banks which is pure deflation since during deflation, those collecting interest gain from not spending or lending the interest because just sitting idle their bonds and idle money deposits in deflation gain in purchasing power, giving them a windfall as the prices of things they buy (homes put on the market for rental properties, bankrupt businesses, privatized public lands and utilities going on the market.) Yellen and her colleagues are determined to prevent a new president from "making American great again" by further restricting consumer purchasing power through deflation, through tight bank lending of national money supply. 

II. Ben Bernanke (Fed Chair 2006 - 2014): This Fed Chairman also served the bond holders and cash balance holders of the world by creating deflation -- to the point of letting the M1 money supply (our checking deposits and dollar bills in the public's hands) actually shrink in quarters prior to the 2008 default crisis which was caused by that shrinkage of buying power, hiring power, tax paying power and, especially, mortgage-paying power of households, businesses and government. He did all of this deflationary damage -- but he talked a good talk -- about helicopter money being needed -- but his strategy and Fed Policy to remedy the deflation crisis -- misnamed a bubble crisis -- truth is, the economy is an airship in need of reflation, not a bubble that gets too much money and bursts, what really happens is the deflation hollows out the economy -- but as I was saying, Bernanke talked a good fight -- but his "solution" for the deflationary spiral -- which he would never exactly name as such -- was for the Fed -- actually Timothy Geithner who was then president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York which does all of the Federal Reserves swapping of bonds for cash (open market sale of bond by the Geithner NYFRB) with the bond holding super rich) and of swapping cash for bonds (the NYFRB buying bonds -- especially bad securitized (bad) mortgage loans from those who bought them -- bailing out the creditors -- CALLED QUANTITATIVE EASING -- protecting creditors from default by buying the bad IOUs from them -- BUT THIS MONEY THE INTERNATIONAL RICH GOT FOR THEIR BAD SECURITIZED MORTGAGE AND OTHER SECURITIES BROUGHT LOW BY DEFLATION IS MONEY THAT NEVER TOUCHED THE REAL ECONOMY WHERE THE MAJORITY OF AMERICANS WERE SUFFERING FROM STILL-ONGOING DEFLATIONARY SPIRAL. THE MONEY WAS HELD IN IDLE DEPOSITS OR USED FOR BUYING REAL ASSETS AROUND THE WORLD -- IT WAS NOT SPENT ON AMERICAN PRODUCTS OR INVESTMENT IN NEW INFRASTRUCTURE OR PRODUCTIVE CAPACITY IN THE US, BUT ONLY TO BUY UP PROPERTIES THAT THE PEOPLE WERE FORCED TO SEEL BECAUSE OF MIDDEL-CLASS DEFLATIONARY DEPRESSION THAT WAS INTENSIFIED BY CHAIRMAN BERNANKE AND NYFRB PRESIDENT GEITHNER. 

III. Alan Greenspan (Federal Res Chair 1987 - 2006) : This Fed Chairman too served the bond holders and cash balance holders rather than the people in the real domestic economy -- buy keeping the national economy on the tightest possible purchasing power rations. Always bear in mind that under the monetary and lending system begun with the Bank of England after the Jew funded glorious revolution of 1688, the Bank, given to usurers by William III so that he could pay for his war with France --- we now live in a country where the entire money supply the economy runs on is borrowed money -- that is, it is a loan deposit created by the bank always along with a co-created debt obligation to pay back to the bank a much greater amount, an amount equal to all obligations for paying principal plus compound interest. When the money supply is loans co-created with a debt obligation to repay the loan amount plus more (the interest) over future months and years we have this pattern. The loan comes first -- which reflates the economy -- the deposits created by the loan continue permanently until someone one gets it deposited in his bank account and then uses it to pay interest and principal -- which is deflation for the real economy. So first the loan which reflates, then the loan payments which deflate the economy and continues deflating it even below the level where it was before the loan was received -- which is when the defaults begin. So when this system is kept going for a while the deflation eats more and more through bankruptcies, through firms distressed and forced merge or be bought out in hostile takeovers by the big cash owning lending class - so that during Greenspan's watch more assets left the hands of the middle class and went to the rich than happened after Wall Street crash of October 1929 and the resulting deflationary depression known as the Great Depression. And when the people were starving and being ruined by Greenspan's tight money policy -- how did he replenish the money supply? He forced people to loose equity on their houses, to swap equity (ownership) in their homes for cash to pay their mounting credit card debt and bank debt -- "refinancing" they called it, but it was robbery -- because the lending class had the Federal Reserve Bank self-regulatiors -- and Congress and the state legislatures set up banking -- sign off on a system where home buyers must pay interest first and principal toward the end of the loan payment schedule stipulated in the loan agreement. That means that every time a family refinanced -- they lost all of the interest payed up to that date with very little equity of their own -- so that with the new refinancing -- which horribly complete replaced 2nd mortgages which were not being pushed in the billions of phone calls people were receiving offering them to "refinance at the new lower rate Greenspan was giving them." But Greenspan was really replenishing money supply draining away in interest payments -- but having home owners restart their payments all over again with the same amount of principal to be paid but the front loaded interest having to be paid all over again. And it was a slow death of many cuts -- because Greenspan replenished the money supply but cutting interest a fraction of a percent at a time -- so that over a long period the refinancing and the people's loss of their front-ended interest payment would continue -- borrowing money at the cost, not only of new interest to be paid which was only a tiny tiny bit lower but because all of the interest they had paid counted for nothing. That was Greenspan's contribution to the American economy -- he kept us on starvation rations of purchasing power while continuously robbing us of home ownership (our equity in the homes were were buying) -- a great transfer of assets from the people to the Money Power. Unearned income for the lending class -- while giving the rich a tight money advantage so that their bonds and dollar deposits (held inoffshore banks) would not loose in purchasing power.

IV - Paul Volker (Fed Chair 1979 - 1987): This monster of a Fed Chairman, started hurting us when he held the job Geithner would hold years later. As President of the New York Federal Reserve Bank Volker single handedly created the double digit INFLATION of the Carter years -- robbing all of the savings and purchasing power the people accumulated from the "go-go" easy money years of Kennedy, to the big deficit-financed spending for war and the Great socialist Society of Lyndon Johnson to the well-managed economy under Nixon (who took us off the gold standard internationally and was inerested in domestic industrial production -- the last American president -- until Trump -- to be so. But Volker at the NYFRB flooded the lending class with cash at a time when quantitative easing still filtered into the real economy -- and so Volker at the NYFRB while having the Fed pay cash for securities -- actually did send too much money chasing too few goods -- double digit deflation THAT ROBBED THE PEOPLE OF THEIR SAVINGS FROM THE 1960'S AND EARLY SEVENTIES WHICH WERE CONSIDERABLE -- AND THAT INFLATION BROKE THE BACKS OF THE SAVINGS AND LOAN COMPANIES WHICH USED TO PAY THREE PERCENT TO DEPOSITORS WHILE CHARGING 6 PERCENT TO HOME BUYERS FOR LONG TERM LOANS (15 YEARS, 30 YEARS ETC.) BUT OF COURSE S & L'S COULD NOT SURVIVE WHEN INFLATION WAS DOUBLE DIGITS AND INTEREST RATES FOR LOANS ALSO DOUBLE DIGITS. And so Paul Volker created the inflation which robbed the middle class of saved purchasing power (like Germans who had war bonds and savings were robbed by the victors after WWI) -- and then what happened. Well while this great robbery was going on their was a patsy Fed Reserve Chairman set up as a figurehead to take the blame -- his name was Miller -- but then after the people were robbed of their savings and after the banks took possession of the best of the S & Ls and their remaining assets and after deregulation of banking was forced by the crisis created for Savings and Loans -- allowing Wall Street investment banks to buy up commercial banks and to go into commercial banking but also, the phony and lethal "fix" to allow remaining S & L's to buy very high interest paying but super risky "junk bonds" - for building shopping malls in the middle of deserts in the hope that "shoppers will come if we build" etc. AND IT WAS THEN THE BANKERS' PRESIDENT JIMMY "CFR" CARTER APPOINTED THIS VERY SAME INFLATION CAUSER PAUL VOLKER TO BECOME THE NEW FEDERAL RESERVE CHAIRMAN -- AND VOLKER IMMEDIATELY REVERSED THE DEFLATION POLICY HE CARRIED OUT AS PRES. OF THE NYFRB AND BEGAN TO RAISE THE DISCOUNT RATE -- WHICH MEANT BIG CUTS IN LENDING -- BIG CONTRACTION OF LOANS OUTSTANDING WHICH MEANS BIG DEFLATION, BIG LOSS OF PURCHASING POWER AND HIRING POWER AND DEBT-PAYING POWER AND TAX COLLECTION.

In short Volker went from quantitative easity inflation making at the NYFRB to loan contracting via discount rate increases as Fed Chairman -- which made any success for the new Reagan Administration impossible. -- Trump Administration take note please!!!!!! It was Paul Voker who created the double-digit inflation crisis -- which moved the country from building homes and cities and infrastructure -- to junk bonds building junk -- rewarding the very opposite of entrepreneurship -- because if an investment was too sensible it would not have the risk premium to give it the high interest rate that S & L/s and other lending institutions locked into long term loans at only 6% were getting -- and so not only were savings robbed but the nation was robbed of the investments in itself that he needed and had always gotten in the past. Volker created the crisis with inflation, and "cured" it with deadly deflation -- and the middle class has been on starvation rations of money ever since -- to be managed by Greenspan as described above, followed by Bernanke and the great big stroke of the big deflation that caused the debt crisis that led to the further cleaning out of Americans of their assets as collateral is seized as deflation leads to default and bankruptcy and liquidation and resale to the Moneyed elite who buys up the dead remains of our enterprises starved to death by deflation of money in people';s hands.
And that this morning is my note on who the people are you see in this picture -- which Facebook reminded me I sent out two years ago. I hope all six people who read this will "like" it -- but more than that save it somehow -- because I am not a published author and no website picks up what I write -- and because the people need to know the truth in bare outline. How can you escape the snares of the devil unless you know these devils' devices?

If you understand and agree -- then, please, for the love of country and of people -- speak up. They may let your voice travel a lot further than they have ever let mine.

Sincerely yours,

Dick Eastman
Yakima, Washington
February 19, 2017
Every man is responsible to every other man.
Nafeez Ahmed
A systemic crisis in the global Deep System has driven the violent radicalization of a Deep State faction

The United States finances wars through inflation and that “most wars are fought on inflated money,” according to former US Congressman and political analyst Ron Paul.

Dr. Paul, a three-time American presidential candidate and the founder of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, made the remarks in an interview on Friday while discussing US monetary policy and the need for a better system centered on sound money.

The senior American statesman said that from diluting gold in coins and clipping coins “in the old days” to using a computer to create new US dollars today, “financing war through inflation is traditional.”

“If the people had to pay for the war as we went along, it wouldn’t happen. You don’t get enough taxes, you don’t get enough borrowing to fight these wars,” he stated.

“And we have the license to steal because we issue the reserve currency of the world. And most of the countries still accept our dollar, even though we’re currently witnessing, in the last few days, a pretty steady attack on the dollar which I think is going to continue, and of course might get much worse,” Dr. Paul said.    

“The money issue is a freedom issue, because if you don’t like the welfare state you have to understand about money, if you don’t like the warfare state, you have to understand that about money,” he added.

“If you care about individual, personal liberty you would have to be a supporter of a commodity...currency, of course, the history shows has always been gold along with silver -- the most preferable type of money,” he observed.  

The Fed, the source of trouble

Dr. Paul has maintained strong positions against the military-industrial complex and the Federal Reserve, each of which he considers responsible for many of the ills afflicting the United States.

The basic source of the economic trouble is America’s central banking system, known as the Federal Reserve or the Fed, which cannot function in a real market economy, he once said.  

“In a true free market economy you have to have people work, use what they need to live on and then save money, and that dictates interest rates and tells businessmen what they should do. Well, that isn’t the way it works anymore,” the veteran former politician said in an interview in 2015, and warned that the biggest economic crash ever would hit the American economy.

“The so-called capital comes from the Fed and they create it out of thin air. So everything is a mistake and everything is going to be volatile,” he observed. 


Zbigniew Brzezinski, counselor and trustee at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, professor of American foreign policy at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, and most famously National Security Adviser under US President Jimmy Carter passed away on Friday May 26th in a Falls Church, Virginia Hospital. He was 89. [2][3]

Brzezinski, though hardly a household name, enjoyed an influence over international politics that few intellectuals outside elected office can hope to attain. In addition to his numerous academic treatises, and the role he played in the Carter administration, he was active in the secretive and influential Council on Foreign Relations and the Bilderberg Group. Additionally, he co-founded the Trilateral Commission with David Rockefeller.[4]

As investigative journalist Daniel Estulin exposes in his 2009 book, The True Story of the Bilderberg Group, all of these bodies convene business and political leaders alongside select members of the press behind closed doors with the aim of undermining sovereign democracies and imposing a policy framework favouring a privileged few. Estulin’s analysis reveals that membership in one or more of these bodies functions as a kind of rite of passage for aspiring presidential candidates in both major US political parties.

It could be posited therefore, that Brzezinski, given his influential role in these organizations, may be more powerful in a sense than elected presidents. [5]
The application of Brzezinski’s theories on utilizing ethnic national struggles as a cudgel against the Soviet Union, was supportive in securing the collapse of the USSR. However, as he would concede in his later writings, this approach has proved to be a spectacular failure in terms of attaining what he called US “global primacy” on the world stage forcing a rethink of his earlier 90s era imperial framework. More importantly, Zbig’s strategy has left a trail of bloodshed and mayhem throughout Eurasia, extending into the Middle East, North Africa and even ‘coming home to roost’ in major American and European centres.

Zbigniew Brzezinski is the author of several pivotal works, including Between Two Ages : America’s Role in the Technetronic Era (1970)The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and its Geostrategic Imperatives (1997), and Strategic Vision: America and the Crisis of Global Power.

Given the ultimate breadth of his influence, this week’s Global Research News Hour commemorates the passing of this controversial figure with an overview of his life and legacy, through the eyes of four observers.  

In the first half hour, writer, author and commentator Jay Dyer analyzes Brzezinski’s core beliefs and activities in the pre-Carter era, and the role of the Trilateral Commission in advancing his influence over Carter and successive presidential administrations. We later replay part of an October 2016 interview with Andrew Korybko, in which he described Brzezinski’s important role in the development of ‘hybrid warfare’ in the modern era. We get the perspective of John Helmer, who was a White House staffer in the Carter era. Finally, University of San Francisco Professor and scholar Filip Kovacevic examines the impacts of Brzezinski’s strategies in the post 9/11 era, his later rethink of the idea of “US Primacy,” and the prospects of neoconservative decision-makers in Washington following his lead.

Trump and the Deep State
Jay Dyer is a contributor to 21st Century Wire and author of Esoteric Hollywood: Sex, Cults and Symbols in Film. He is a public speaker, lecturer and comedian, and has authored hundreds of articles. His website is

Andrew Korybko is a geopolitical analyst and an American commentator based in Moscow. He is the author of Hybrid Wars: The Indirect Adaptive Approach To Regime Change. He currently studies at the Moscow State University of International Relations and is a member of the expert council for the Institute of Strategic Studies and Predictions at the People’s Friendship University of Russia. He works for Sputnik.

John Helmer is the longest continuously serving foreign correspondent based in Moscow, and directs his own independent bureau there. He has been a professor of political science, sociology and journalism, and has advised government heads in Greece, the United States and Asia. He served as a staffer in President Jimmy Carter’s White House from 1977 to 1981. Helmer recently composed two articles on Brzezinski: Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Svengali of Jimmy Carter’s Presidency is Dead, But the Evil Lives on, and The President’s Inferiority Complex, His Advisor’s Russia-Hating Obsession, and the Putsch Plotter with the Itchy Trigger Finger. Both can be found on Helmer’s website,

Filip Kovacevic is a Montenegrin geopolitical author, a university professor, and chairman of the Movement for Neutrality of Montenegro. He has authored seven books and numerous articles and teaches at the University of San Francisco. Well versed on Zbigniew Brzezinski’s published works, Professor Kovacevic also serves as senior analyst for Russia and the Balkans for


The world has endured one complete and completely calamitous year of Donald Trump, the president of the United States - "Mr President", as Americans reverentially refer to him. After a tumultuous and deeply divisive presidential campaign, in a free and fair general election, Americans elected a notoriously racist, consistently misogynistic, white supremacist, xenophobic, real estate charlatan as their president, entrusting him with their highest and most revered political office. He was solemnly sworn in "to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States" on January 20, 2017, at 9am.  
To be fair, in electing Donald Trump as their president Americans did not have much of a choice, for opposing him in the final election was a singularly corrupt corporate lackey and carpetbagger named Hillary Clinton who systematically sabotaged the campaign of the only decent American that could have been elected president - Senator Bernie Sanders.

Given their choice between Hillary Clinton and a nefarious charlatan, Americans opted for the nefarious charlatan. There are certain snakes in hell from which you run to dragons, as we say in Persian. The world thus nosedived into perhaps the most dangerously destructive year in its recent history. We are now living that history. We are about to finish its first year: year 1 AT (after Trump). 

We, the future historians of our present
The future historians (if Trump leaves us a future to fathom and does not cause a nuclear holocaust or an environmental calamity does not put an end to us all) ought to know that this US president wakes up early in the morning and the first thing he does is start bombarding the globe with the most inane, most imbecilic salvos of gibberish that emerge from his mental and moral indigestion. He calls them his "tweets". What a beautiful word to abuse and waste for his blithering verbal diarrhoea - no harmless birdie ever chirped anything but joy in this world. Then he goes about issuing his racist misanthropic fatwas against one thing or another.

One day, he bans Muslims from entering the US; another day, he pulls the US out of environmental accords meant to preserve the earth; the next day, he wants to build a wall at the Mexican border because he thinks Mexicans are rapists; and the day after, he steals a whole historic city and gives it to his Zionist financiers, before, just for fun, saying Haitians "all have AIDS". If he doesn't have anything else to do, he just tweets - a few Islamophobic videos, defends some neo-Nazi thugs, and makes a few anti-Semitic remarks. His supporters just love him for these spontaneous outbursts of his true nature. "He tells it like it is," they say.
Trump consistently lies, systematically cheats, unabashedly insults weak and vulnerable people. He keeps up with his predecessors' habit of mass-selling arms to Arab tyrants to kill more Muslims, gives them for free to Israelis to keep killing more Palestinians and stealing their lands, and he then awards them by declaring Jerusalem their capital. The world is scared witless of climate change. He says global warming is good to combat cold weather.

The world is aghast at the range of sexual assaults and sexual harassment perpetrated by powerful men and here he is the president of the United States, the most dangerously powerful man on planet earth, facing allegations of predatory sexual misconduct. We the future historians of our present must rush to anachronism to tell our posterity (if there will be a posterity) what has happened to us. 

A neo-globalist

The world looks at the United States today and shivers with outrage, with fear and trembling, aghast at the moral and political bankruptcy of a "democratic system" that results in such disgraceful insults to common human decency. This is in sharp contradistinction to what any decent American thinks of himself or herself. Trump's election has brought the majority of Americans to the bosom of humanity at large - fearing for themselves their own elected imperial officers. There are those among Americans who think Trump is a political isolationist or an economic nationalist. But that is not the case. Politically, he is a warmongering bully that has intensified bombing of nations and then sought to close the US borders to its catastrophic humanitarian consequences. That is not isolationism. That is amoral cowardice.

The same goes for his economic policies. He wishes to rob the world of its natural resources, destroy the environment, and enrich his obscenely rich political backers. That is not economic nationalism. That is highway robbery on a global scale.  The first target of Trump's nefarious economics has been American people themselves. His monumental tax scheme that his fellow Republicans just passed will target the poorest segments of the US society to enrich the tiny upper echelon of the country. What sort of "nationalism" is that? He is a thief stealing from the poor enriching the rich even more.

What Donald Trump has staged is first and foremost the moral and political crisis that "Western democracy", in general, and American democracy, in particular, face today. All the way from Plato and Aristotle to Thomas Jefferson and Alexis de Tocqueville, the world has been force-fed, lectured at and politically held hostage to overdoses of highfalutin treatises about "Western liberal democracy" - the crowning achievement of which is this clinically diabolical buffoon. Trump is no isolationist or nationalist. He is a neo-globalist of fear and fanaticism, of thievery for the rich and destitution for the rest.  

The law of diminishing returns
A year into the Trump presidency, the global perception of common American decency has been seriously diminished, the fear of its vulgar and violent militarism increased, the brutish impact of US disregard for planetary environmental calamity intensified, nefarious US allies like Saudi Arabia and Israel given free hands to slaughter people in Yemen and Palestine with impunity, the poorest and most vulnerable segments of American society targeted for even more impoverishment, its richest pockets made even deeper and more obscenely rich.

The world, including the majority of Americans, stand today on one side, and Donald Trump and his richest and most dangerous beneficiaries from Washington to Tel Aviv to Riyadh on the other. They are wreaking havoc across the globe and we are bracing for even worse to come. 

A shining truth emerges from this calamitous condition of humanity at year 1 AT of our world history. The world is forever freed from all its dangerous delusions: from the nativist American democracy to European liberal globalism, from the corrupt Russian oligarchy to the globalised Chinese communism, from xenophobic Zionism to megalomaniac Islamism, from homicidal Hindu fundamentalism to genocidal Buddhist nationalism. Free at last, as the moral voice of Martin Luther King Jr, declared, thank God Almighty we are free at last from all the false god terms of our history - just a year into the presidency of our very own Roman Emperor Mr Donald Trump, Real Estate Developer, Inc. We are freed from all delusional fantasies East and West and walk through this valley of despair with our eyes and hearts wide open, our minds and intellect clear and caring - the modest prophets of our own uncharted destinies.

                   NEW GLOBAL ARCHITECTURE 

Since the Second World War, the US had dominated much of the world on the strength of its military, the vast network of its intelligene apparatus, and the power of its dollar. The collapse in 1991 of the Soviet Union merely added to American hubris. Nearly 85% of the world’s central banks maintained their reserves in US dollars. Additionally, in 1973, the Americans forced the Saudis — the world’s largest oil producer at the time — to trade oil only in dollars; hence the term petrodollars.

At the beginning of this century, the euro emerged as a rival to the US greenback. The euro has captured 20% of the reserve currency market diminishing the dollar’s dominance. Now another currency — the Chinese yuan — is making itself felt on the global financial markets. The yuan is emerging on the strength of the Chinese economy that is already the second largest in the world. In a decade or so, it is expected to surpass the US Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The US also has a huge trade deficit with China, not because of unfair trade practices or lousy deals, as Donald Trump alleges, but because American corporations make lousy products. They have also outsourced most manufacturing jobs overseas to gut the wages of American workers.

The yuan’s rise is inevitable because of the strength of the Chinese economy and Beijing’s massive trade with other countries. China has also entered into bilateral agreements with a number of countries whereby they would trade in each other’s currency, bypassing the dollar. This has already happened with Russia and moves are afoot to make similar arrangements with Turkey, Pakistan, and countries in Southeast Asia. These are hopeful signs and would certainly further diminish the dollar’s influence.

China has more than $2 trillion in reserves. It is gradually divesting dollars and acquiring gold. In fact, both Russia and China have agreed to back other countries’ reserves with gold. This was the arrangement until 1971 when then US President Richard Nixon de-linked the dollar from gold. The yellow metal priced at $35/oz at the time is now trading at more than $1,200. This reflects the precipitous drop in the value of the dollar whose victims are other countries.

On the military front as well the US has suffered massive blows. Despite its huge stockpile of weapons and obscenely high military budget (officially at $650 billion per annum), the US military has not won a single war on its own. This may sound strange but it is true. Let us look at the record. The US has never fought a war on its own; it always gathers allies (it actually coerces them to join) to fight weaker opponents. Despite this, the US and its allies have not succeeded. Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria offer recent examples. North Korea continues to defy US threats.

After its defeat in Afghanistan at the hands of ragtag bands of Taliban fighters, the US decided to use proxies. Al-Qaeda and ISIS emerged to cause havoc in Iraq and Syria. In both places, the takfiri terrorists have been defeated and their territorial possessions reduced to isolated pockets. This came about as a result of determined help from Hizbullah and Islamic Iran to their allies in Iraq and Syria. Western media outlets harp on Russia’s air force achieving victory in Syria but deliberately ignore the more important role played by Hizbullah and Iran. According to military experts, the air force contribution to any modern war effort is about 10%. It is troops on the ground that make the real difference. Russia does not have boots on the ground in Syria; the US does — about 2,000 of them — and it has established illegal bases in the country.

Washington alleges that it is fighting ISIS terrorists. This is a lie; ISIS is a creation of the US and its allies. Following their defeat in Syria, ISIS terrorists were transported by American helicopters to Afghanistan. Zamir Kabulov, Russia’s special envoy for Afghanistan, said last month that there are more than 10,000 ISIS terrorists now operating in Afghanistan, thanks to US support.

There is no reason for US Special Forces to be present in Syria anymore; there never was a genuine reason in the first place. Their presence in Syria is illegal. General Qassem Solaimani, Commander of Iran’s Quds Force, in a message to the US last month warned it to get its troops out of Syria or they will be driven out. Unlike the US, Iranian commanders do not make empty threats; they fulfill them.

Thus, the twin pillars of US hegemony — its dollar and military — are both in decline. America’s crumbling infrastructure, shuttered factories, and crumbling cities with collapsing bridges and rotting water pipes are proof positive that the US is in terminal decline. Even its European allies — Britain, France, and Germany — have had enough of American hubris. They are charting their own course in global affairs. A new multipolar world is emerging, one that promises a better future for humanity than America’s exceptionalism.


Paul Jay
June 21, 2018

The ruling elites are creating a world where the majority of people suffer the consequences of the climate crisis and massive unemployment while the super-rich use artificial intelligence to save themselves – a commentary by TRNN’s Senior Editor

Prof. James Petras

America has the greatest inequalities, highest mortality rate, most regressive taxes, and largest public subsidies for bankers and billionaires of any developed capitalist country.  In this essay we will discuss the socio-economic roots of inequalities and the relation between the concentration of wealth and the downward mobility of the working and salaried classes. 

How the Billionaires become Billionaires 

Contrary to the propaganda pushed by the business press, between 67% and 72% percent of corporations had zero tax liabilities after credits and exemptions … while their workers and employees paid between 25 – 30% in taxes. The rate for the minority of corporations, which paid any tax, was 14%.  According to the US Internal Revenue Service, billionaire tax evasion amounts to $458 billion dollars in lost public revenues every year – almost a trillion dollars every two years by this conservative estimate.  The largest US corporations sheltered over $2.5 trillion dollars in overseas tax havens where they paid no taxes or single digit tax rates.

Meanwhile US corporations in crisis received over $14.4 trillion dollars (Bloomberg claimed 12.8 trillion) in public bailout money, split between the US Treasury and the Federal Reserve, mostly from US tax payers, who are overwhelmingly workers, employees and pensioners. The recipient bankers invested their interest-free or low interest US bailout funds and earned billions in profits, most resulting from mortgage foreclosures of working class households.
Through favorable legal rulings and illegal foreclosures, the bankers evicted 9.3 million families. Over 20 million individuals lost their properties, often due to illegal or fraudulent debts. A small number of the financial swindlers, including executives from Wall Street’s leading banks (Goldman Sachs, J. P. Morgan etc), paid fines – but no one went to prison for the gargantuan fraud that drove millions of Americans into misery.  There are other swindler bankers, like the current Secretary of Treasury Steve Mnuchin, who enriched themselves by illegally foreclosing on thousands of homeowners in California. Some were tried; all were exonerated, thanks to the influence of Democratic political leaders during the Obama years.

Silicon Valley and its innovative billionaires have found novel way to avoid taxes using overseas tax havens and domestic tax write-offs. They increase their wealth and corporate profits by paying their local manual and service workers poverty level wages. Silicon Valley executives ‘earn’ a thousand times more than their production workers.. Class inequalities are further reinforced by ethnic divisions. White, Chinese and Indian multi-millionaires exploit Afro-American, Latin American, Vietnamese and Filipino workers.

Billionaires in the commercial conglomerates, like Walmart, exploit workers by paying poverty wages and providing few, if any, benefits. Walmart earns $16 billion dollar a year in profits by paying its workers between $10 and $13 an hour and relying on state and federal assistance to provide services to the families of its impoverished workers through Medicaid and food stamps. Amazon plutocrat Jeff Bezos exploits workers by paying $12.50 an hour while he has accumulated over $80 billion dollars in profits. UPS CEO David Albany takes $11 million a year by exploiting workers at $11 an hour. Federal Express CEO, Fred Smith gets $16 million and pays workers $11 an hour.

Inequality is not a result of ‘technology’ and ‘education’- contemporary euphemisms for the ruling class cult of superiority – as liberals and conservative economists and journalists like to claim. Inequalities are a result of low wages, based on big profits, financial swindles, multi-trillion dollar public handouts and multi-billion-dollar tax evasion. The ruling class has mastered the ‘technology’ of exploiting the state, through its pillage of the treasury, and the working class. Capitalist exploitation of low paid production workers provides additional billions for the ‘philanthropic’ billionaire family foundations to polish their public image – using another tax avoidance gimmick – self-glorifying ‘donations’.  Workers pay disproportional taxes for education, health, social and public services and subsidies for billionaires. Billionaires in the arms industry and security/mercenary conglomerates receive over $700 billion dollars from the federal budget, while over 100 million US workers lack adequate health care and their children are warehoused in deteriorating schools. 

Workers and Bosses: Mortality Rates
Billionaires and multi-millionaires and their families enjoy longer and healthier lives than their workers. They have no need for health insurance policies or public hospitals. CEO’s live on average ten years longer than a worker and enjoy twenty years more of healthy and pain-free lives. Private, exclusive clinics and top medical care include the most advanced treatment and safe and proven medication which allow billionaires and their family members to live longer and healthier lives. The quality of their medical care and the qualifications of their medical providers present a stark contrast to the health care apartheid that characterizes the rest of the United States.

Workers are treated and mistreated by the health system: They have inadequate and often incompetent medical treatment, cursory examinations by inexperienced medical assistants and end up victims of the widespread over-prescription of highly addictive narcotics and other medications. Over-prescription of narcotics by incompetent ‘providers’ has significantly contributed to the rise in premature deaths among workers, spiraling cases of opiate overdose, disability due to addiction and descent into poverty and homelessness. These irresponsible practices have made additional billions of dollars in profits for the insurance corporate elite, who can cut their pensions and health care liabilities as injured, disabled and addicted workers drop out of the system or die.

The shortened life expectancy for workers and their family members is celebrated on Wall Street and in the financial press. Over 560,000 workers were killed by opioids between 1999-2015 contributing to the decline in life expectancy for working age wage and salary earners and reduced pension liabilities for Wall Street and the Social Security Administration. Inequalities are cumulative, inter-generational and multi-sectorial.

Billionaire families, their children and grandchildren, inherit and invest billions. They have privileged access to the most prestigious schools and medical facilities, and conveniently fall in love to equally privileged, well-connected mates to join their fortunes and form even greater financial empires. Their wealth buys favorable, even fawning, mass media coverage and the services of the most influential lawyers and accountants to cover their swindles and tax evasion.

Billionaires hire innovators and sweat shop MBA managers to devise more ways to slash wages, increase productivity and ensure that inequalities widen even further. Billionaires do not have to be the brightest or most innovative people: Such individuals can simply be bought or imported on the ‘free market’ and discarded at will. Billionaires have bought out or formed joint ventures with each other, creating interlocking directorates. Banks, IT, factories, warehouses, food and appliance, pharmaceuticals and hospitals are linked directly to political elites who slither through doors of rotating appointments within the IMF, the World Bank, Treasury, Wall Street banks and prestigious law firms.

Consequences of Inequalities
First and foremost, billionaires and their political, legal and corporate associates dominate the political parties. They designate the leaders and key appointees, thus ensuring that budgets and policies will increase their profits, erode social benefits for the masses and weaken the political power of popular organizations.

Secondly, the burden of the economic crisis is shifted on to the workers who are fired and later re-hired as part-time, contingent labor. Public bailouts, provided by the taxpayer, are channeled to the billionaires under the doctrine that Wall Street banks are too big to fail and workers are too weak to defend their wages, jobs and living standards.

Billionaires buy political elites, who appoint the World Bank and IMF officials tasked with instituting policies to freeze or reduce wages, slash corporate and public health care obligations and increase profits by privatizing public enterprises and facilitating corporate relocation to low wage, low tax countries. As a result, wage and salary workers are less organized and less influential; they work longer and for less pay, suffer greater workplace insecurity and injuries – physical and mental – fall into decline and disability, drop out of the system, die earlier and poorer, and, in the process, provide unimaginable profits for the billionaire class. Even their addiction and deaths provide opportunities for huge profit – as the Sackler Family, manufacturers of Oxycontin, can attest.

The billionaires and their political acolytes argue that deeper regressive taxation would increase investments and jobs. The data speaks otherwise. The bulk of repatriated profits are directed to buy back stock to increase dividends for investors; they are not invested in the productive economy. Lower taxes and greater profits for conglomerates means more buy-outs and greater outflows to low wage countries. In real terms taxes are already less than half the headline rate and are a major factor heightening the concentration of income and power – both cause and effect.

Corporate elites, the billionaires in the Silicon Valley-Wall Street global complex are relatively satisfied that their cherished inequalities are guaranteed and expanding under the Demo-Republican Presidents- as the ‘good times’ roll on. Away from the ‘billionaire elite’, the ‘outsiders’ – domestic capitalists – clamor for greater public investment in infrastructure to expand the domestic economy, lower taxes to increase profits, and state subsidies to increase the training of the labor force while reducing funds for health care and public education. They are oblivious to the contradiction.

In other words, the capitalist class as a whole, globalist and domestic alike, pursues the same regressive policies, promoting inequalities while struggling over shares of the profits. One hundred and fifty million wage and salaried taxpayers are excluded from the political and social decisions that directly affect their income, employment, rates of taxation, and political representation.

They understand, or at least experience, how the class system works. Most workers know about the injustice of the fake ‘free trade’ agreements and regressive tax regime, which weighs heavy on the majority of wage and salary earners. However, worker hostility and despair is directed against ‘immigrants’ and against the ‘liberals’ who have backed the import of cheap skilled and semi-skilled labor under the guise of ‘freedom’. This ‘politically correct’ image of imported labor covers up a policy, which has served to lower wages, benefits and living standards for American workers, whether they are in technology, construction or production. Rich conservatives, on the other hand, oppose immigration under the guise of ‘law and order’ and to lower social expenditures – despite that fact that they all use imported nannies, tutors, nurses, doctors and gardeners to service their families. Their servants can always be deported when convenient.

The pro and anti-immigrant issue avoids the root cause for the economic exploitation and social degradation of the working class – the billionaire owners operating in alliance with the political elite.

In order to reverse the regressive tax practices and tax evasion, the low wage cycle and the spiraling death rates resulting from narcotics and other preventable causes, which profit insurance companies and pharmaceutical billionaires, class alliances need to be forged linking workers, consumers, pensioners, students, the disabled, the foreclosed homeowners, evicted tenants, debtors, the under-employed and immigrants as a unified political force.

Sooner said than done, but never tried! Everything and everyone is at stake: life, health and happiness.

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)