How the New American Empire Really Works
In How the New American Empire Really Works, Paul Craig Roberts nails that circularity to the wall: The military-security-financial complex is not only a means of ensuring the extraction of wealth from the peoples of the world. It is itself the means of extracting the wealth of the American people. And one way to explain what James Petras calls the crisis of labor – essentially, government by capital, for capital – is the refusal of Americans to learn history and their fatal weakness (which at the same time is their great strength) of empathy, best shown in their empathy with the families of “those who serve” when they lose a loved one. They close ranks, as they did in September of 2001. Yet among our ranks were those who were not – are not – above using such a tragedy to extend the very machine whose diabolical operation resulted in the blowback of 9/11. And as Roberts points out with such startling clarity, ultimately the purpose of that machine is to extract wealth.
[...] America’s wars are very expensive. Bush and Obama have doubled the national debt, and the American people have no benefits from it. No riches, no bread and circuses flow to Americans from Washington’s wars. So what is it all about? The answer is that Washington’s empire extracts resources from the American people for the benefit of the few powerful interest groups that rule America. The military-security complex, Wall Street, agri-business and the Israel Lobby use the government to extract resources from Americans to serve their profits and power. The US Constitution has been extracted in the interests of the Security State, and Americans’ incomes have been redirected to the pockets of the 1 percent. That is how the American Empire functions. The New Empire is different. It happens without achieving conquest. The American military did not conquer Iraq and has been forced out politically by the government that Washington established. There is no victory in Afghanistan, and after a decade the American military does not control the country. In the New Empire success at war no longer matters. The extraction takes place by being at war. Huge sums of American taxpayers’ money have flowed into the American armaments industries and huge amounts of power into Homeland Security. The American empire works by stripping Americans of wealth and liberty. This is why the wars cannot end, or if one does end another starts. [...]