There are several new books floating around the house besides Al Gore's Assault. One is George Lakoff's Thinking Points. It's another valuable contribution by the Berkeley professor of linquistics and cognitive science on how Conservatives think and use lanquage and argument frames; and how Progressives can better learn to communicate their values.
The other book is the Secret History of the American Empire by John Perkins, the author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.
Here is an exerpt from Chapter 29.
A Bankrupt United States
Petroleum distinquished itself as history's all-time most valueable resource during the first half of the twentieth century. It became the driving force hehind modernization. Procuring reliable supplies formed the cornerstone of foreign policies. Japan's petroleum obsession was a major factor in the decision to attack Pearl Harbor.
World War II elevated oil to even higher status. It fueled tanks, airplanes, and ships; a combatant country without oil was doomed.
Oil also evolved into the single most powerful tool of the corporatocracy.
After peace was declared, US oil company executives formulated a plan that would change the course of history. They decided that is was in their best interests (and therefore the country's!) to convince the president and congress to save US reserves for future wars and other emergencies. Why drain domestic oil fields when those of other continents could be exploited?
In collaberation with UK and European companies, they persuaded governments to grant them tax breaks and other incentives they claimed were required to ensure domination of global petroleum supplies.
This decision--which has been endorsed by every president and congress since--led to policies that have redefined national borders, created kingdoms, and brought down governments.
Like gold, oil turned into a symbol of power and the basis for valuing currencies; unlike gold, it is essential to modern technologies-- to the plastics, chemical, and computer businesses.
At first, it appeared that the oil executive's plan would heap wealth on third World oil producing countries. However, following in gold's footsteps, oil became an albatross. Petroleum rich countries were similiar to prospectors in the boomtowns of the Old West; as soon as they filed claims, they became the targets of scoundrels and robber barons.
At roughly the same time that oil was emerging as the key to the modern age, the Soviet Union surfaced as Public Enemy #1. Historian recognize that empire biulders require external threats. (clip)
It is not surprising that the first real Cold War showdown over oil occured in that part of the world containing the most oil, the Middle East. Demanding that his people share in petroleum profits from their lands, the democratically elected and highly popular Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh (Time magazine's man of the year in 1951) nationalized a British Petroleum company's assests.
An outraged England sought the help of her World War II ally, the United States. Both countires feared that military intervention would provoke the Soviets into pulling the nuclear trigger.
Instead of the Marines, Washington dispatched CIA agent Kermit Roosevelt Jr. (Theodore's grandson) With a few million dollars, Roosevelt organized violent demonstrations that eventually overthrew Mossadegh; the CIA replaced this democraticall elected leader with Mohammad Reza Pahlavi (the Shaw), a despotic friend of Big Oil.
As dicussed in Confessions, Roosevelt's success generated a whole new profession, the one I followed, that of EHMs. The lessons of Iran were clear: An empire could be built without the risks of war and at far less expense. The CIA's tactics could be applied wherever resources existed that the corporatocracy wanted.
There was only one problem. Kermit Roosevelt was a CIA employee. Had he been caught, the consequences would have been dire. The decision was made to replace operatives with agents from the private sector.
One of the companies enlisted was mine, MAIN. "
If there is even a little doubt in your mind that the current war in Iraq is not an oil war, this book will forever seal thoses doubts. The author's stories, based on his career in private black ops while working for the corporatocracy, makes it clear just how far gone things really are.
We cannot end war until we end the need to control oil resources, and
We cannot rest control from the corporations that control the planet,
as long as we continue to give them that control.
The path seems clear to me.
We stop burning carbon, (which is killing us anyway)
and we start building giant global coops that can compete
with the mega-entities that currently run the show.
We cannot defeat the corporatocracy on its own field
by working within the systems that they have created.
We simply must stop feeding them.
Someday, an advanced humankind will look back at these days,
and marvel at this time
when corporations and robber barons
ruled the earth,
much the same way
that we look back at the time of the Monarchs.
The Monarchs had better clothes.
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