Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Dead Horse Special

I don’t expect everyone to agree with me on everything I write but after being falsely (sniff) accused of either not being hard enough on the Democrats or of being too hard on Obama or of being unaware of the nature of power particularly in the realm of world politics I would like clarify my position. So here is my version of what I believe is happening.

It’s the Oil

First of all what is crucial to understanding world politics is the relationship of oil to power and its relationship to the actions of China, Russia, Japan, and the United States. Everything really revolves around these powers and the quest for controlling the oil sources of the world. From my point of view the quest for controlling the oil has little to do with the oil companies other than they are eager for more and more profits. However the true value of oil is that it gives power and a huge advantage to those who control it and what this means for the U.S. who is the dominant force in the world today by a huge margin is that in order to stay on top they have to stay in control of the oil. Basically it boils down to if you control the oil then other nations who need oil (which is everyone) are more willing to bend to U.S. interests because the U.S. is controlling the oil sources. Take Japan for instance. Everyone is now saying Japan will be more independent from the U.S. due to the recent election there yet that independence, if it really exists, will still be balanced by the fact that the U.S. controls Japans source of oil in the Middle East. That’s power with a capital “P”.

In a sense what this means is that the real aim of U.S. foreign policy is to keep China and Russia from gaining any ascendancy over controlling the oil sources. It’s really a no-brainer that oil was the reason for the invasion of Iraq but it was that same invasion that has backfired on itself resulting in a segment of the puppet regime in Iraq being closely affiliated with Iran who has relations to China. So if the U.S. leaves Iraq, as in really and truly leaving with all the troops, it would be tantamount to giving up control of that huge reserve of oil to China. And this is why no matter what is said by whom we will never, ever, give up the control of Iraqi oil because to do so would be to forfeit our position as the dominant power on the planet.

Who is Wagging Who?

It seems to me a lot of arguments revolve not so much about what is happening in the world as it does about who is wagging who? Does Israel really control U.S. Foreign policy? Is the president in charge or is the Pentagon in charge? Did the CIA take over the government or is it the president’s personal army? Is corporate America in charge or is the government in charge?

Okay, so let’s begin with Israel, the world’s longest running tragedy. I find the idea that little Israel is controlling the U.S. to be absurd in the extreme. Yes, Israel has a large influence with politicians but this influence is largely that of campaign contributions. During W. Bush’s term the Israeli asked permission of the U.S. to fly through Iraqi air space in order to get at Iran, a request that was flatly refused by W. Bush. I didn’t see any Israeli warplanes flying through Iraqi air space, did you? Of course not. Let’s try to keep this real okay? The Untied States: largest and most advanced military force in the world backed up by literally thousands of nuclear warheads. Israel: A puny little nation basically a parasite that only exists today because of U.S. backing and support mostly in the form of millions of dollars backed up by maybe 300 nuclear warheads. Please.

Now let’s look at the military-industrial-scientific-congressional complex and the Pentagon and the president and who’s in charge. The president is in charge but each faction has influence on the president. Now that I’ve settled that let’s look at the CIA. Who’s in charge, the CIA or the President? The president of course in charge, in fact the CIA is the president’s personal and private army. I wrote about it extensively here.

Does Ideology Play a Role?

Absolutely not. To view the machinations of our government as based on ideology is simply too idealistic to be believable. Everything George W. Bush did was completely rational when viewed from the perspective of the need to control the oil sources already discussed above. That our government wants to lead the world to a new era of peace and prosperity is utterly ridiculous as is the idea that they wish to spread Democracy. The name of the game is world domination and oil is the tool for achieving and maintaining that power.

This is why I despise world leaders for their goal is always power and how to keep it. That they pay more attention to those corporations who give them large campaign donations then they do individual private citizens shouldn’t be difficult to understand unless you are an imbecile. This is basically how I see things. Yes, the Pentagon, the corporations, and Israel all have influence with the president but until I see some compelling proof otherwise the president is basically in charge and therefore should be held responsible for his decisions.

4 Comments:

At September 02, 2009 1:12 PM, Blogger Bob In Pacifica said...

I hate to disagree when we mostly agree, but claiming that the CIA is the President's private army is just wrong.

If I were designing a picture of the actual government I would put way above all the Presidents, legislators and judges a group of corporatists. They control the country by buying and bribing politicians, by owning and controlling the media, etc. But they also have another means of controlling the country, and that is the intelligence community, and for shorthand we'll call it the CIA (although there are dozens of entities like the NSA, the DIA, the DEA, the FBI etc., who work for the same ends.).

Any study of the formation of the CIA from the remnants of the OSS will show that there were many Wall Street lawyers at the foundation. People like the Dulles brothers were there to ensure that their class was represented. During the fifties coups were orchestrated in order to protect corporate interests overseas.

If the CIA were willing to murder and violate the law overseas, why would they ever check their weapons at the door when returning to the country?

JFK was viewed by a class traitor by many in the oil industry and international corporatists. You may cling to the belief that JFK was popped by a lone nut, but even holding that belief you can see how JFK's various statements, including his threat to dismantle the CIA, may have been viewed unfavorably by the people running the CIA and those whom the CIA served overseas.

At every step of Watergate people within the White House and outside turned up with intelligence backgrounds, including the media hero Bob Woodward (ONI) who later gave us the "facts" about Bob Casey's deathbed confessions.

We've had the former head of the CIA as President for four years (and running the country for another 8 years), his SON for eight years. That would be 20 years. I would suggest that Clinton was a very inside player with the intelligence services and their corporate allies, considering his history, and his wife had those same connections.

While it might seem silly to argue if the President is running things but is serving the interests of the corporatists versus the CIA being the Pinkertons of the world and above the Presidency, I think the distinction is actually important. If you presume that Obama or any President has actual control over foreign policy, then you hold him responsible.

But replacing Obama does no good.

First off, if Obama is replaced in 2012 it will be by a Republican. And, yes, at least marginally there is a difference between the two parties.

Second, and more important for these discussions, by directing hate towards Obama you have been diverted by your emotions from the actual source of your problems. Who would have been a better President? The mother of an arbitrager and wife of the guy who brought us GATT and NAFTA who threatened to make Iran glow? She had CIA propagandists like Larry Johnson and Gloria Steinem working overtime trying to bifurcate feminists from civil rights supporters. Edwards? Whether or not you believed his populism do you actually think that his blackmail file wouldn't have been used to sink his candidacy? McCain? Huckabee?

The game is fixed, and it's fixed on many levels. It's a waste of time to focus on one replaceable part in the machine when it's the whole machine that's responsible for the mess we're living in.

 
At September 03, 2009 12:21 AM, Blogger rob payne said...

Bob,

That was fairly said and indeed I think we do agree on many things.

It may be more accurate to say that corporate America, the complex etc. and the U.S. government has basically merged to become one entity. Chalmers Johnson, another former CIA analyst seems to feel quite strongly that the CIA is the private army of the president and writes about it in his book Nemesis. However I know you don’t agree with that for your own reasons.

I think you make some valid points here with some interesting history on the CIA yet Chalmers makes a lot of sense to me. Recall also how Cheney ordered the CIA to send him unvetted data and the CIA complied though it was more usual to vet the information first for validity. Of course that is merely one example yet fairly telling it seems to me.

On Kennedy’s murder I actually have no favorite theory. There are certainly many problems with the official story and Oswald. And I don’t rule out that perhaps the CIA was behind Kennedy’s death. But like I said I don’t have a favorite theory mainly for lack of any proof.

As you so correctly noted there is continuity from one president to the next. But there is more than one possible reason for this. It could be as you say that the intelligence community is calling the shots but on the other hand it could also be as mundane a reason as the fact that all presidents, at least for the last one hundred years, all have been after one thing, fortifying their own power which is more easily done during times of war. Really we have been pursuing the imperial road for some time and it began a good 50 years before the CIA was created which I think ought to be considered when debating who is in charge. So what I am saying is we can find continuity even before the CIA existed and there is no need to have a CIA coup to create the continuity.

For the record I would like to say I’m not trying to direct hate at Obama rather it is to expose him for what he truly is, an opportunistic con artist. For it is as Dennis Perrin said that the right thinks Obama is a commie socialist and the left believes that he is one of them. Both are obviously sadly mistaken. Yet I think your point about Obama being only a part of a greater whole is certainly true. And it would be misleading to say that he isn’t heavily influenced by the Pentagon, the intelligence community, etc. etc. etc.

One of the very real dangers of Obama is that due to his popularity coming into the presidency he actually made it easier to surge in Afghanistan and to leave the troops in Iraq while pretending to withdraw them or drawdown them or whatever term they use these days. I believe this actually makes him worse than McCain. However given a choice between Obama and Hillary I would prefer Obama. Obama is what he is but Hillary is truly awful and seems to be the bigger warmonger of the two.

 
At September 04, 2009 7:51 AM, Blogger Bob In Pacifica said...

I should get off my ass and write another piece on this, and really, Jonathan, I will. Soon.

But until I do, imagine this:

Imagine the ticket of Dennis Kucinich/Howard Dean winning the Presidency. I know, it takes a lot of imagining, but there is President Kucinich. Do you think he gets the troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq?

What's that troubling thought in your head? You see plane crashes? You see lone nuts in sixth-story windows? Or do you see sex scandals or some charges of graft?

Actually, something in the last paragraph would have happened if Kucinich even had a slivver of a chance to be President. I'm pretty sure that the sex scandal on John Edwards was in the vest pocket of someone, waiting to be played if he had ever gotten anywhere near the nomination.

Imagine if you are part of the corporate oligarchy. Granted, depending on how the economy lurches your specific corporation or area of business may become more or less powerful in the oligarchy. But there is a relative status quo there. You have one and a half of the two parties giving you what you want in laws and regulations. You have the military making the world right for your investments by waging wars, making coups or just oiling the local graft machines around the globe. Everything is hunky dory.

Why would you risk having a President get elected and screw up things by actually pushing legislation that helps the average joe over the oligarchy?

In the 30s J. Edgar Hoover had an elaborate system of blackmail for all major politicians in the U.S. A huge drawer full of index cards. He had agents in bureaus around the country who could be trusted to find dirt on anyone he disliked or mistrusted. The lesson was learned when the CIA was born. James Jesus Angleton used to brag about what they heard of the bugs placed all over D.C. And Angleton's people allegedly showed Hoover a picture of him in the act with his roommate Clyde Tolson in order to make Hoover subservient in the turf war.

Just as Hoover had friends in the media, the Agency has done the same, times one hundred. In a world where the NSA can read every email and listen to every phone call a political enemy might make, there is a system in place for blackmail that is far superior to index cards.

They are part of the Village that gives you the "common sense" that you should believe. Intelligence people have insinuated themselves throughout the government (Bob Barr, anyone?), the media (Bob Woodward, Ben Bradlee, Cokie Roberts), as figures in social movements (Gloria Steinem). And I suspect that the system of intelligence agents, assets and assholes is far more extensive than we would imagine.

When Steinem writes an op-ed for the NYTimes saying that women have it rougher than blacks on the eve of the New Hampshire primary what is the likely outcome? It exacerbates the division between white women and blacks. Who does that serve? The Right. The oligarchy.

My point is that the game is now so fixed that nowadays it won't allow a real change in the program. But historically, if you look at the JFK assassination and the Nixon coup and October Surprise you'll see the hand of the CIA, the enforcer agency, all over the removal and replacement of Presidents who failed to follow the plan.

Zbigniew Brzezinski is closer to power than Obama. He has been there in Washington, D.C. throughout my life. He was telling Carter what to do, and on the ground floor of using Osama bin Laden in our guerrilla war against the Soviets in Afghanistan back in the 70s. He was negotiating for that pipeline through Afghanistan in the 90s. And looky who's still there?

 
At September 04, 2009 11:52 AM, Blogger rob payne said...

Bob,

Another good set of comments. I’ll look forward to you writing more about it.

I certainly agree that the fix is in regarding who gets nominated or elected, no doubt about that at all. The two major candidates both were sending the correct signals to the establishment, especailly Obama a newcomer with a funny name had to really reassure them that he was one of the gang which he really is.

Then there was the fawing before AIPAC by all and sundry, a sickening sight.

 

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