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The Tower Of Wealth
Without A Foundation

By Siv O'Neall

08 December, 2006

Imperial arrogance – the road to chaos

The two mainstays of the neoconservative and neoliberal agenda can be reduced to the accumulation of more wealth for the tiny upper clique of the American population and to assuring the ever-lasting continuation of the U.S. empire. The rest of the world is simply of no consequence to the neocon way of thinking and that's where they make the huge mistake that is one day going to be their downfall. Willful shortsightedness has always been their hallmark and every day now it is looking ever more likely that their undoing is imminent. When the base caves in, the tower will come tumbling down.

U.S. imperial arrogance has had no bounds since they began to see themselves as an invincible power already in the 19th century. That's when they began to strike out in Latin America to consolidate their empire in the western hemisphere and the Philippines. The geopolitical situation in the world has recently led Washington to assume preposterous rights to single-handedly reshape the world to their liking and the long-term goal is clearly to become the rulers of the planet. But it now looks increasingly as if the roof is going to fall in on the whole pack of wolves and one day soon the now astronomically rich will find themselves left out in the cold with nothing but worthless paper in their portfolios.[1]

Don't credit the neocons with any deep ideological thinking in their way of going about conquering the world. The United States must obviously be an empire, its military must be invincible and the country must continue to be by far the wealthiest country in the world. Of course we are the most powerful and the world has to see it clearly and tremble with awe and fear. We are also the moral beacon to the world; we alone know what has to be done to save our moral values, our high-minded law and order high priests read the gospel of righteousness to the world.

Certainly some neocons believe that God has given them the right or even the duty to defy anyone who threatens U.S. hegemony and that therefore they have every right to run roughshod over international law and conventions. The plenipotentiary powers of the pre-revolutionary European kings is their model. Napoleon and Hitler are their forerunners.

They invaded Iraq, not to get rid of Saddam Hussein. What did they care? They had cooperated most warmly with him for decades before. Of course they thought they would take over the running of that part of the world, Iraq, then Iran, then Syria. No big deal. That whole part of the world was going to become a U.S. protectorate. The American military is invincible (as the warm-up exercises in Central America, Panama and Grenada had proved to Ronald Reagan) and now that they had the American people scared out of their wits after 9/11 (Well done Cheney, Rummy and Karl Rove!), they were absolutely free to go on with their plans to conquer the world. A hyped-up global war on terror was just what it would take to get the Congress to play into the conspiracy game. [2]

Profit, eternal war and one lone superpower

How did this conspiracy play out? Well, first we destroy Iraq as completely as possible (with the exception of the Oil Ministry) so that American companies could be used to reconstruct the country and lay their hands on all the profit that would come from oil and from the rebuilding activities. And let's not forget the liberalizing of the market. State owned utilities and companies were privatized and U.S. corporations bought them up and wreaked all the profit, openly or underhandedly. Billions disappeared into vast holes. The Iraqi people are suffering from conditions immensely worse than under the wicked Saddam Hussein, but who cares. Within the Green Zone, everything is hunky dory.

Don't believe that the neocons had any long-time plans for how to run the world, any deeply thought out geopolitical plans. There was really just one thing that truly mattered to the people who cared not a wit for reality. Instant profit. Make the wealth grow for the top one percent of Americans. Other nations didn't matter; one superpower is the goal. The means? – Eternal war, which in neocon newspeak is called global peace.

The parody is that Canada, Europe and Australia thought they were into the game, and so they slavishly followed suit. They obediently adopted the free market agenda and started cutting down on social services, fearing that they might be left behind in a neoliberal world. Money must move towards the top from the bottom (forget the trickle down theory – it's nothing but a phrase to put a respectable face on an inhuman way of moving the wealth around from those who produce it to those who enjoy the fruits of it), such is the gospel now all over the world and workers fight hopeless fights in countries where unions believe they still have a say. The free market has become a gospel that no single country dares turn their backs on, even though there are actually some countries in Latin America who seem to have seen the deceptive light inside the neoliberal bubble.

How long can this go on?

Now, what is going to happen when the production forces dry up, when the true makers of the wealth of the earth stop producing? People starve to death, get incurably sick from lack of health care, get strung out on drugs since there's no more future left for them, they flaunt the laws and get thrown in jail because they don't care any more what is going to happen to them. Hope has died.

What do the wealthy people do when the morale is totally gone from the working slaves, when the anger and despair rise to such a level that they cannot be contained any more. When their anger spills over and the slaves go on a rampage. And what do the wealthy people do when the poor people run out of buying power, when the masses can just barely feed themselves and their children. Nobody seems to care a wit about the fact that no economy can function if money only circulates inside a tiny bubble at the top of the tower. Tiffany is making bigger profits than any time in recorded history. Fine for Tiffany but where does it take the rest of the population? [3]

Who cares?

And I haven't even begun to mention humane considerations. The top one percent of the American

population have no idea what it means to be bereft of all dignity, nor do they care.

The people at the top of the tower of wealth don't know anything about human suffering. It's not their problem. They have their billions and who cares if the people out in the streets are furious and desperate? The people in the tower buy $50,000 yellow diamonds for their wives and girlfriends and they have no idea of what is outside of their bubble. The link to the world of reality is broken.

Where does this lead us?

This state of things is of course untenable. Our society is falling apart because of hardship and what follows in the wake of it, crimes, drugs, listlessness and the lack of focus on life-saving tools, above all high-quality education and the motivation to build a good life that can come from having a meaningful and secure job, from being afforded common human dignity. Indifference to our lives and to where we end up in spite of all the hardship is the inevitable result of too much suffering. And the bubble can't go on sparkling up in the sky while the world is falling apart down below. The tower of wealth without a foundation is bound to topple, sooner rather than later.

However, as we see more and more, education and social services, essential for the well-being of the people, have been put on the backburner, if not completely extinguished. People are supposed to stay ignorant. So goes a regressive code of reasoning. Fundamentalist religion is considered healthy for the people, but good education breeds people who demand their share in the wealth and we can't have that. There may be some planning behind the 'starving of the beast', but, above all, the neocons are ruining the U.S. educational system because they don't care. Education for the masses is too costly and as long as the upper class children get a good education, nothing else matters. The military industry comes first and of course the tax breaks for the wealthy.

There is simply no planning, no real thinking, just let the very few accumulate colossal fortunes and the rest will take care of themselves – or they'll die. Who cares? Forget what W promised in his first election campaign. Words without the slightest meaning, nor were they supposed to have any meaning. As long as he got elected to serve as the smirking facade for the neocons who saw him as a pliable tool for their ends, the end which was and will forever be, making the rich richer. Ideology is a respectable word. There is nothing respectable in the present administration and its policies.

[1] Patrick Bond: 'Global capital still volatile, uneven, destructive' – "Two years ago, in a ZNet commentary - 'Crunch time for US capitalism?' - I opened by suggesting that 'the prospect of the US economic empire stumbling, tripping, and maybe even crashing is welcome indeed.' There's really no reason to adjust the diagnosis, although Washington's crisis-management techniques have kept its empire from deteriorating as fast as desired."


[2] Anthony Arnove: 'The U.S. occupation of Iraq: Act III of a tragedy in many parts'

"They are staying to save face for a U.S. political elite that cares nothing for the lives of Iraqis or U.S. soldiers; […] to maintain the legitimacy of U.S. imperialism, which needs the pretext of a global war on terror to justify further military intervention, expanded military budgets, concentration of executive power, and restrictions on civil liberties."


[3] Heather Burke:'Demand soars for 'extremely high-end' gifts'

"Expensive gifts are flying off the shelves as securities firms prepare to award bonuses to workers in New York that will total a record $23.9 billion, according to Alan Hevesi, the state comptroller."


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