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Factors of Our Downfall

By       Message Craig Harrington       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   1 comment

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Through its ill-fated economic and diplomatic policies the United States has leveraged away its international influence.  The current recession began in 2007 and despite massive government interference it could be at leastgovernment bailout was sold--unsuccessfully--to the American people as a means of saving our nation from imminent destruction.  Instead it may have actually facilitated in speeding up our collision course with financial doom. 

The United States spends more than it brings in, and it does so to such a degree that our country has accumulated trillions of dollars in debt.  The only way to keep the government operating is to borrow money from foreign creditors. If those creditors were to ever deny the U.S. a loan the entire system would grind to a halt.  Income, corporate and sales taxes would increase, driving our "free trade"- multinationals overseas and putting an incredible burden on our already debt-sodden citizens.

To stave off this disaster, the government replaced one problem with many others.  The U.S. Treasury is essentially a ponzi scheme, so long as new money comes in, the old investors get paid.  In order to protect the sterling triple-A credit rating of its Treasury, the government must make concessions to other countries to guarantee that they continue giving new money to the old system.     

The United States has given away many things in exchange for loan guarantees.  We have allowed foreign interests to build our trade policy so that we abandon economic nationalism in favor of "free trade."-  This has allowed other countries to benefit from our massive consumer market, while subjugating our citizens and government to surviving on outsourcing foreign production.

The Department of Defense recently took the contract for the new Marine One Presidential helicopter away from Sikorsky Aircraft Corp (an American company) and gave it to Lockheed Martin a subsidiary of AgustaWestland.  Lockheed Martin is owned by foreign governments-- including Bermuda, and various interests of Great Britain and the United Kingdom.  Some of the largest creditors to the United States--the UK and Caribbean banking centers--now own American aerospace giant Lockheed Martin, and were given the contract to build a presidential aircraft.  On some level this deal came down to whether or not the U.S. could afford to offend its creditors, and the answer was no.      

The Department of Defense was also ready to give a major multi-billion dollar Air Force tanker contract to a European consortium instead of American owned and operated Boeing.  The deal would have cost thousands of skilled engineers their jobs and put the new Airbus ahead of next generation Boeing models in our own military.  There has even been some discussion that the Boeing 747 which currently serves as Air Force One will be replaced by an Airbus in the next few years.

Aside from defense contracts, the United States has made many policy decisions regarding its stance on international trade, its place in the WTO and its willingness to allow foreign competition to gut American industries in its attempt to keep the creditors happy.  The United States may have the world's largest and most powerful military, but many of the components for weapons, machines, vehicles and electronics in that military are foreign built.  We cannot hope to fix what is wrong with our country by implementing "America first"- policies if our government is directed by foreign interests.  So much money pours into political war-chests from overseas that election or re-election to any major government position would be impossible without the approval of foreign interests.  To make matters worse, not only are our politicians bought and paid for, but the government and in fact the American system are obligated to live off foreign production and continue the vicious cycle.

 

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Craig Harrington is pursuing a degree in History and Political Science at The Ohio State University. He is also a journalist for EconomyInCrisis.org.

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