When the troops came home after World War II, people seemed to feel that we had fought and defeated the world's worst dictators and it was now time to create utopia in a world made safe again for democracy.
People wanted the American dream - a house with a picket fence in suburbia, two cars, raising a family, kids getting an education, unions protecting workers, a reasonable pace of work with ample white space, a social safety net, and everyone getting ahead.
Yes, it was sexist - women remained at home raising children and condemned to a life of cleaning and cooking. Men remained trapped in unfulfilling work, bringing home the bacon, and endlessly shoveling walks or mowing lawns.
Unbeknownst to most people, behind the scenes was a group that had a different plan. For them life was about a massive transfer of wealth from a vague "us" to a very specific "them," the depopulation of the globe, and the subjugation of the remaining folks to what became a "New World Order.".
Dr. Carol Rosin, in "UFOs: The Greatest Story Ever Denied," tells of bumping into these masters of the universe and seeing that they intended to keep the world in a constant state of war. Their enemies were created and included first Communists, to be fought in a Cold War, and then "terrorists," then rogue states, then asteroids from space, and finally extraterrestrials.
Industrial production was geared to the defense contractors who would protect the world against one enemy after another. And so it has gone.
Moreover, as if having these enemies was not enough, the "West" sought to keep the wealth of the world in its own hands and even to subvert and bring down economies of any other region that attempted to gain a piece of the pie.
Thus, when Indonesia, Thailand, Japan, Korea, and Russia gained a modicum of wealth, the large financial houses created a run on their currencies and brought their economies to their knees. These same financial houses bought their debt at mere cents on the dollar. Then the IMF came in and made these same financial players important to the "recovery" effort, stipulating that the national debt, held by the banking and investment houses, now must be paid off in full - not in cents on the dollar, but dollar for dollar.
Economic hitmen were employed to bring governments down and create regimes and financial conditions amenable to the West. Whatever social-welfare programs existed were ended in the name of "austerity."
Where the drug trade existed, the CIA took it over and ran it in the interests of the black budget. Where indigenous populations sought to gain a foothold for themselves, they were bullied and sometimes massacred.
It wasn't enough that the West garnered the wealth of the rest of the world to itself. It next turned on its own population.
After a brief space of time in which people had pension plans, medical benefits, good vacations, etc., an internal variety of predatory capitalism began battening on itself and devoured its own children.
Rampant speculation in a series of bubbles - the leveraged mergers-and-acquisitions bubble, the junk-bond bubble, the dot.com bubble, and the subprime mortgage bubble - drained value out of the economy.
New technologies - some derived from downed space ships like the computer chip from the Roswell craft - automated work, destroyed white space, annihilated entry-level jobs, consumed one trade and profession after another, and leveled advancement opportunities in the once-vertical company.