Tag: US empire

The American Empire

Bush on aircraft carrier declaring victory in IraqAmerica has always been an expansionist country. Just ask Native Americans. By the end of the 19th century our internal empire building reached its physical limits and America began to reach out. In the post WWII period the American Empire became a global fact. The US military failed to contract as it had following every war preceding. 

In the post WWII era, under the guise of the Cold War, the American Empire expanded with over 700 military bases and tens of thousands of troops posted in Europe, Asia, Central and South America, and Africa. The US Navy is comprehensively dominant in every ocean. The secret state of spies (CIA, NSA, and so on) add another layer of capabilities that are largely unknowable. though visible through their role in “regime change”.This almost 75 year period of the American Empire is characterized by almost continuous warfare and use of force to impose our will, at will, on every continent through direct intervention and “regime change”. 

The official American rhetoric of American exceptionalism centers around three claims. America is unique and original. America is built on ideals of egalitarianism, democracy, individualism, and laissez-fair economics. Finally, America is superior and has a duty to spread its values and system around the world.

Though not part of the official rhetoric there are schools of thought concerning the American Empire that come from the hard-nosed “real politik” diplomacy inspired by Metternich and other earlier practitioners of state craft. This is the Kissinger, Brzezinski school. Then, of course, there are the not too hard to discern influences of America’s global corporations and financial interests.

 

The question is:  for whom is the American Empire a good thing?

Movie – War Machine – a misplaced parable

Netflix has just released War Machine onto the streaming media waters. This movie fits into the long tradition of American media mostly puffing up our military exploits or turning them into light tragi-comedy.  Brad Pitt, applying the acting style of a trimmed down George Clooney, portrays the fictional General Glen McMahon. Broadly and obviously based on the story of the real General Stanley McChrystal who took over the War in Afghanistan in June 2009 only to be ousted in June 2010 after a profile appeared in Rolling Stone Magazine revealed much foolishness and derogatory comments about President Obama and VP Biden. The movie has its comedic moments and the very broadly played General MaMahon is bound to either really annoy those enamored of the US military or fulfill the image of buffoonish generals that others may prefer.

Election Results: The Next Ten Years

img_1844– The Morning After –

The election of Trump and the continued Republican control of both Congress and Senate guarantee that the rich will continue to get richer at the expense of the shrinking middle class and further aggravate conditions for the poor. Trickle down economics and tax subsidies will flow for the rich and corporations. The financial sector will buy its way out of the weak regulations of Dodd/Frank and lurch towards new adventures in gambling; a financial disaster will once again require the socialization of their risk at taxpayer expense.