The Parasitic Empire Plundering the World’s Cash Flow
Age-old tribute taxes arrive in many forms and disguises
We associate tribute taxes to ancient times like the Roman Empire when the provinces had to pay tribute to Rome. They might have taken the form of cash, supplying soldiers and slaves, wagons of grain or whatever else the empire designated as essential to its needs.
Like empires before and since, the Roman Empire came to an ignominious end, consumed by its own corruptions. Empires, and the humans that run them, are fully loaded with frailties. The difference between then and now is that the world’s singular super power is pursing global hegemony virtually unchallenged and in doing so threatens the very existence of mankind. Making the utterly bogus claim of being the world’s “indispensable nation” it renders tribute taxes that are unconscionable and ultimately ruinous to all.
Empires at their zenith are seen as all-powerful and immutable but in fact they are by definition parasitic, feeding off their minions. As decline inevitably sets in they become even more parasitic as resources become increasingly scarce, corruption prevails and indebtedness runs out of control. An empire in decline becomes driven by desperation as like the drug addict it must feed its addiction and is quite capable of resorting to criminality. In the case of the USA its addiction is warfare and consequently the wicked militarism that sustains it.
Where so many politicians claim to be champions of the middle class, they are in fact abandoning it too the anarchy of a world in chaos. Too many of the taxes paid by the middle class are in fact being redirected to pay tribute taxes and this burden is becoming ever larger. These tribute taxes are rendered in the form of fighting the foreign wars of the Empire, buying its endless production of military junk and the social and economic costs of assimilating the refugees from these wars.
These are claimed to be protection money for the vassal states but in fact the enemies that threaten us are regularly manufactured by the treachery of the empire. When a country is addicted to the endless production of weapons and munitions there must be a market, and these must be utilized, and too many body counts are left uncounted. The Empire plays both ends against the middle as it slays its counterfeit enemies to serve its hegemonic ambitions; at the same time keeping its allies broke, obedient and feeble. The empire has declared war on the world where it can be the only winner. No quarter given to friends or enemies; each exploited in service to the empire’s wicked ambitions.
Meanwhile the middle class looks on, abandoned, and cynical, at the audacious betrayal of their governments as they whore themselves to endless war and tribute taxes.
The Pentagon’s “wake up”call
A recent study published by the Pentagon says the US empire is collapsing and with it is their ability to wage war on the world. To justify its profligate spending it must be provided with a steady diet of wars. In other words serial warfare is its cash cow needing a regular “fix” to satisfy its glutinous diet.
As Lawrence Wilkerson points out in an excellent interview the Pentagon must be a dealer in fear. In order to milk the public purse as it has done for so many decades the culture of fear must prevail; there must be a constant supply of threats and enemies. As he points out where the Pentagon doesn’t get money through legitimate Congressional allocations it does it the other way:
“Exactly. Another way to do it, of course, is to just rip, pillage, and plunder all those funds that are out there for poor people, for poverty, for other issues that confront this country, for infrastructure development, for the kinds of things we need to do to confront climate change, and so forth. You just strip those funds of money and give them to the military.“
Wilkerson discusses the rip, pillage and plunder, going on within America’s borders. It does though go on globally as it exploits its vassal states mercilessly. Tribute taxes in the 21st Century arrive on a country’s doorstep in many guises ranging from outright extortion to the insidious undermining of its social, economic and constitutional fabric.
Gutting government and Democracy
Tribute taxes present a special dilemma for governments, especially those that claim to be democratic. They must operate with an exquisite covert duplicity, saying one thing and doing another. They must make sure there is an enduring democratic deficit in place to pull off their shenanigans. All efforts for electoral reform make great table talk but not much more. Defense spending, in all its billions, is really tribute money going toward the Empire’s imperial adventurism. The defense minister must pretend his ministry is making its own decisions when it is in the employ of others. The delusional foreign minister likes to pretend we are a sovereign state, exercising “hard power” but she too is a proxy purveyor of foreign wars.
Then there is the artless dodger who twitters away welcoming refugees, offering them safe haven after being party to the wars that destroyed their homelands. The refugees arrive only to find the welcome mat isn’t quite laid out as planned.
It never occurs to these nabobs of deceit dumping waves of refugees in a foreign country is a form of warfare in itself-CEM(Coercive Engineered Migration) and a very good way to exhaust a country’s social and financial resources- as Europe is finding out. It becomes yet another tribute tax, and the Empire in return, is not granting any tax credits-just issuing more demands, as bullies do.
Sovereignty and democracy are reduced to sham when governments so willingly sell themselves into bondage.
Sanctions as tribute taxes
Russia has drawn the ire of the Empire, not because it has been bad, but because it is in violation of the Wolfowitz Doctrine and the PNAC. Few have heard about these august documents as they go a long way to explaining what is wrong with the world. They specify that America rules and anybody that challenges its absolute power will have their asses kicked out of existence, ergo: Iraq, Libya and now Syria. Others are on the hit list and TBA.
Russia has committed the sin of insisting on its sovereignty(one of the increasingly few countries in the world to do so), and so bold as to not turn over its resources to the Empire. As a result it has been slapped with sanctions.
Sanctions cut both ways and become another form of tribute tax. By their obligation to honor the sanctions against Russia, Europe’s economy is paying a heavy price. The US is coming down harder than ever on Russian sanctions as it has just passed another bill doubling down on existing sanctions. German Chancellor Angela Merkel is furious but not likely to protest.
She might be counselled her 11 years of total servility to the bully Empire only encourages its arrogant, domineering behavior and the imposition of extreme tribute taxes. Keeping its feeble-minded allies, feeble, comes all too easy.
Neoliberals: Poaching on the public purse.
What do the Wolfowitz Doctrine, the PNAC and Neo-liberalism all have in common? They are three very big elephants in the room nobody wants to talk about. All three suffer from morbid obesity, and deserve our undivided attention. They have to be put on strict diets as the frame work of the house is on the verge of collapse.
Neo-liberalism is the free market, economy that is global and all pervasive. It is the operating system for most governments though they don’t want to acknowledge it. It can be characterized in many ways and one of the best is that privatizes wealth and socializes debt; it is also socialism for the rich and capitalism for the poor. For Neo-liberals democracy only exists in the market place of deregulation and privatization where they get to do what they want when they want; which means they have to have politicians in their hip pocket and most are more than willing to hop in.
The role of governments under Neo-liberalism is to stay out the way, be obedient, practice strict austerity, and fork for the cash on demand. Practicing strict austerity means the private sector gets to control most of the wealth which helps to insure no uppity government has the cash to initiate social programs that may actually benefit the middle class.
So called P3s are Public Private Partnerships. More accurately though they have to do with poaching on the public purse(again PPP). The public puts up the cash, the private sector hauls in the profits. Canada’s brand spanking new Canada Infrastructure Bank is one such example.
Free trade agreements are one of the great misnomers of all time as they have little to do with free trade and everything to do with corporate rights and privileges. The NAFTA’s real purpose is to assert American control over the Canadian and Mexican economies. Similarly, the TPP(Trans Pacific Partnership) is a mass resignation on the part of the signatories giving away control over their economies. Though Trump has temporarily derailed the TPP in the US it will surely be back to take over as instigator and chief beneficiary of the TPP.
Then too, there are those ubiquitous corporate subsidies, tax write offs and minimal taxes paid. Where corporate subsidies abound, subsidies for the middle class, like universal pharmacare, dental care, day care, and a guaranteed annual income are rendered impossible as governments are left cash starved with high debt loads.
The old homily “keep her barefoot and pregnant” very much applies to Neo-liberal thinking- keep the middle class poor, providing cheap labor, and propagating future consumers.
Our post modern ancient world is goose-stepping back to medieval times, also known as the Dark Ages. How dark we don’t really know. There are many shades of dark we appear determined to explore. Even though we have the opulent vainglorious trappings of post-modernity our political and economic structures are degenerate and a new age of feudalism is being born.
What we accept as a tyranny, seen as immutable, is really no more than one more corrupt status quo that must change. It is a perjury we are too willing to tolerate.
A unilateral world is a very dangerous place where tribute taxes just keep getting bigger and bigger, more and more devious, sucking up the world’s wealth and our futures. Maybe it is time to start speaking out and working toward a genuine and determined multilateralism that is more inclusive, less predatory, and somewhat humane.
A silence no longer affordable. Help spread the word.