Signs of Empire

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We
live in an empire. We live in an empire regardless of whether people
recognize it as such. It is not all that difficult to reach that
conclusion. One just needs to have a bit of historical perspective
and have a wider view of the trends of the last few decades. An
empire is characterized by sustained foreign intervention and ever-increasing
levels of domestic despotism. As I shall show, The United States
government satisfies both of my criteria.

There
are U.S. military personnel stationed in over one
hundred countries of
the world. What is their purpose? The government
and state worshippers will say that the U.S. is entitled to monitor
and prevent conflicts as well as to provide assistance in international
affairs. Yet if this is true, then why is it not the case for other
countries? Most European countries, as well as China, for example,
could easily open bases in the U.S and any other country that would
allow them to monitor whatever they considered to be of national
interest. The Federal government is the single largest force that
the world has ever seen. With vast resources all over the globe,
it intervenes in the internal affairs of most of the countries in
the world: it supports and funds governments, gives regimes easy
access to weapons, establishes laws, and uses its economic and political
power to threaten and influence politicians. Those who claim
that the military is "protecting and defending us" need
to explain how "defense" became "offense." There
is, however, some upper limit to intervention. When and how that
occurs is still to be seen.

Another
method of imperialism is to control the world's money. A huge number
of countries use the dollar as their reserve currency. Over the
years, foreign banks (both state and otherwise) have been buying
U.S. debt at alarming
rates
. Since it is the purpose of an empire to become a hegemon,
the U.S. government, via its inflationary tool, the Federal Reserve,
continues to increase the money supply and add to the national debt.
The money goes to fund domestic welfare and international warfare.
As debt increases, the empire must continue to find ways to keep
the demand for its money high. If this means further intervention,
it must do so. A continuous inflationary policy, however, will inexorably
lead to the fall of the dollar.

The
central government is now the seat of a bipartisan group of egalitarians;
they have embraced statism and collectivism and push forward their
sociofascist agendas with extreme disdain. It barely matters if
they do so under the rhetoric of "protecting our seniors"
or "for the children" or "for your own good"
or "compassionate conservatism" or "war on terror"
or "war on drugs." In the end, every measure accelerates
imperialism. Through their tactics of tax-and-spend or borrow-and-spend,
the Federal government is trashing private property rights; it makes
economic calculation more difficult; it diminishes our quality of
live; and it hinders the peaceful and efficient market economy.

Every
classical liberal lesson is ignored. We have a standing army. We
go overseas for trouble. We are still mercantilists. We disarm the
people. We lock up prisoners indefinitely. We issue fiat paper money.
The Constitution is dead. Federalism is dead. Local police are being
militarized. Secession is impossible. The rule of law has vanished
and we're now being ruled by the tyranny of the masses: a social
democracy where laws are determined lobbyists according to that
day's political climate. Centralization of power, regulation and
licenses, and heavy taxes are part of today's life. The police state
is also here. Indeed, we are constantly attacked with searches and
seizures. We are being watched and closely scrutinized while the
socialists take our homes and the fascists regulate our lives.

Dr.
Bill Barnett, in a recent
interview
, wonderfully summarizes the situation:

We have less
freedom today in this society than our forbearers did two hundred
years ago. They didn’t have this overweening federal government
intervening in everything in their lives…

We have lost
so much of the freedom that the people who went before us fought
for and bled for that it’s immoral for us to just acquiesce in
this loss of freedom that we have.

… our society,
I believe, has been on the decline … [since] 1787 when Hamilton’s
gang hijacked the Articles of Confederation, went to Philadelphia
and wrote a Constitution… So I really think that in terms of
human liberty we have been on the decline since then even though
materially we’re growing. But now we’re going to reach a point
-who knows, it could be very soon given the amount of debt that
we have internationally and the way nobody’s saving domestically
and the huge amount of government intervention – where we enter
into a long period of economic stagnation and decline and of course
with increasing losses of our liberty.

Nothing
lasts forever and the U.S empire will fall one day. Perhaps the
empire will fall as a result of military aggression. Perhaps it
will fall due to monetary collapse, domestic uprising of maybe even
secession. One thing is certain, though, there is an end. And it
is not too far away.

December
2, 2005

Manuel
Lora [send him mail]
is a freelance TV producer and multimedia specialist in New Orleans.

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