Thursday, August 30, 2018

Claire Connelly - The economy of permanent war

No wonder the US is just a giant military-industrial complex that goes around threatening everyone in the world pretending to be the good guy getting the bad guys. This has been going on for decades with war after war. But who pays for all this, the average tax payer it seems?  Plus they can send in their Western companies to pretend to rebuild the countries that they destroyed while opening up their markets and privatising so Western investors can get to own everything.

The US will bring democracy to your country and set you free, and they will even elect your president for you.

Why don't the Western aristocracy just ask for the money they want and leave everyone alone?

 'War is a Racket'.
Permanent war: the cost of doing business
Dr Kadri says that free trade is ‘a poisonous concept’ that requires a state of permanent war.
“In way we are caught in a catch-22 situation,” he says. “War is awful, but it does wonders for the macroeconomy.”
“One need only look at what has occurred in Yemen, Gaza, Libya, Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq to discover the new shape of war and what happens to countries that attempt to control their own resources in an age where war and war spending have become all the more necessary to take the market out of its slump.”
Syria’s GDP was $73 billion in 2012, a 73% decrease in economic output from 2008, according to Statista. Cumulative GDP loss between 2011–2016 is estimated at $226 billion, according to the World Bank.
Why would the US be interested in billion dollar trade, when it has made more than a trillion out of war in Syria?,” he says. “If you want cash in against the Syrian government, you spend a trillion dollars mobilising intelligence in the west, another couple of trillion sowing dissent, saying Syria is bad, we have a bad guy in power, we should kill him and free this country, maybe bring in ISIS, al-Qaeda or some other obscurantist group. They’re willing to pay even tens of trillions, because they will earn back every penny.”
“If they spend ten trillion on this war, they’re going to earn $10–20 trillion back,” he says.
Around 30,000 people daily succumb to hunger and malnutrition. Not long ago, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the right to food reported that one child perishes every four or five seconds from hunger and other preventable diseases.
“We live in a planet that must destroy its resources — including human resources,” says Dr Kadri. “This is what capital concedes: it requires death, either through severe austerity or through wars. There is nothing in the way they frame these concepts that is bereft of destruction.”
Either you’re in the pocket of the US or you are going to be destroyed. The point many people don’t see is that destruction and war is an end in itself.”
When war is more profitable than trade
The former UN economist says that free trade basically dislocates resources and never re-employs them back.
“It either drives resources out of business, or it simply destroys them,” he says.
“If you force governments in sub-Saharan Africa or the Middle East to subsidise their agriculture, while the EU, for instance, spends a trillion euros a year subsidising its agriculture, you already have an economic imbalance in the way policy occurs.”
In many cases, war is actually more profitable than trade.
The Iraq war made Halliburton $20 billion in revenue. KBR, its controversial former subsidiary, (previously run by George W Bush’s Vice President, Dick Cheney) was awarded at least $39.5bn in federal contracts related to the Iraq war between 2003–2013.
Cheney himself profited handsomely from the conflict. Halliburton rose from the 22nd largest military contractor in 2000 to seventh in 2003 when Cheney took office. His financial disclosure statements from 2001, 2002 & 2003 revealed he received $1,997,525 from the company since becoming VP, along with stock options. Though Cheney resigned as CEO in July 2000 (to ‘avoid any conflicts of interest’), he walked away from the company with a retirement stock package worth $33.7 million.
The 100 largest arms producers and military services contractors recorded $395 billion in arms sales in 2012. Lockheed Martin, the largest arms seller, alone accounted for $36 billion in such sales during 2012.
“Iraq was willing to negotiate, and it would continue to sell its oil in the dollar, yet it got invaded and the costs of its war were nearly $6 trillion in some estimates,” says Dr Kadri.
“Had the US just traded with Iraq, which was a US $50 billion GDP country, it may have made off with say tens or a hundred billion. Without going further into details, the gains of war are tremendous.”
More here - and the rest is just as chilling. 


Bob Roddis said...

The government can pay for all this war because of "modern money". Which, of course, is the real reason we have "modern money". It's such a great thing that the Deep State and military are not "revenue constrained", isn't it?

Matt Franko said...

You guys are extremely biased anti-war...

Matt Franko said...

You guys should start to think about how you’d react if we actually had a war,..

Kaivey said...

The majority of people are anti-war, Matt, and if knew what was going on they would put the pro-war aristocracy in jail.

Matt Franko said...


“Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan
The average level of support for the U.S. military action in Afghanistan approached the eight in ten that typically supported World War II.“

Konrad said...

Kaivey, please don't feed the wretched little troll. Never read its pathetic comments. Never give it any response. The filthy P.O.S. lives for attention, so don't give it any. Starve it into extinction.

Simsalablunder said...


Right. A 13 year old poll from 2005 is good enough for the scientist Matt Franko.

John said...

The Rand study was published in 2005, two years after the invasion of Iraq, when lies and propaganda were at their height. Soon after, public opinion turned sharply against, leaving only the deluded and genocidal "Christian" right and super-deluded nationalist and neoconservative buffoons supporting it.

The subtle and misleading nature of the polling questions are worth highlighted. For example, if the perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks are traced back to Afghanistan, do you support military action? At the time the war was launched, the best intelligence was that the US had no idea who did it, but the suspicion was Bin Laden. Years later, it was found that Afghanistan had nothing to do with it. The plot and the planning came out of Germany, and all the training was done in the US. Facts, fuck them, they're anti-war or stochastic or claim we evolved or some such bullshit.

The full horror and stupidity of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq finally dawned on just about everyone (except the anti-anti-war armchair warriors who get off on the sight of innocent blood being shed while quoting the Bible) when huge numbers of coffins draped in the flag started coming home, prothetic limbs and scarred faces were a daily sight, the jihadis made immeasurably stronger and the terrible but obvious conclusion reached that the wars were going to be lost, which they have.

It's nice to know that Matt only favours stochastic measures when it seemingly supports his arguments, dismissing the most important scientific facts 99.9999999999999% of the time as stochastic or evolutionary bullshit, favouring exact solutions, again failing to understand the mathematical fact almost ALL equations, if they can be formulated, do not have exact solutions and must be "solved" by approximation techniques. That's why a huge amount of time is spent on numerical, approximation and perturbation techniques. If anyone can find exact solutions, they'll be rightly considered the greatest mathematician in history and worthy of countless awards.

Matt Franko said...

Yeah 8 out of 10 is a minority... take a math class sometime...

Matt Franko said...

John here is McCain from back then:

“On Sept. 12, 2001, he appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews, where Matthews asked whether the appropriate response should be "a legal matter or a military matter."

"I think it's both," McCain replied. "As — as we stated, the — a nation has the right to defend itself, No. 1. But No. 2, these organizations could not flourish effectively unless they had the help and assistance and safe harbor of these nations. And it isn't just Afghanistan — we're talking about Syria, Iraq, Iran, perhaps North Korea, Libya and others."

This is still going on... from the US perspective... yes taking a long time...

Trump is perhaps changing tactics ...

Matt Franko said...

Btw the families appear to be perhaps on the table now:

Tom Hickey said...

"I think it's both," McCain replied. "As — as we stated, the — a nation has the right to defend itself, No. 1. But No. 2, these organizations could not flourish effectively unless they had the help and assistance and safe harbor of these nations. And it isn't just Afghanistan — we're talking about Syria, Iraq, Iran, perhaps North Korea, Libya and others."

This is still going on... from the US perspective... yes taking a long time...

Trump is perhaps changing tactics ..

The concept that McCain put forward was given the name "nation-building."

Trump ran against nation-building. This is a element in America First.

He is now conflicted in that he doesn't want to engage in nation building in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, which correctly views as quagmire for the US. But he wants the oil, and the military and foreign policy elite are also explaining to him that "national building" is just BS that justifies US occupation of strategic areas, which it never leaves. Germany and Japan are still occupied fifty years after WWII.

John said...

Right, here we go again. Matt making stuff up again, wildly concocting "evidence". When did I say 80% is a minority? Go on, where? I commented about the date of the study, what the study asked, and all the lies and propaganda that were swirling around at the time thereby distorting the public's perception. Shortly afterwards, a majority of the public turned against the war. All facts. I like facts.

Take a math class? Why would I take them again? I passed them first time round, undergraduate and graduate (summa cum laude, to use the American distinction). You, on the other hand, are in desperate need of the most elementary mathematics.

As for what John McCain said, you have to prove the assertion, not state it. It's called international law. If proven, which it wasn't, that does not give any state the right to attack another state. Again, it's called international law, something the US is a high signatory to and therefore has a great responsibility to protect, not to flout. Washington simply decides to bomb, invade, occupy and drone other countries. There is no great pretence that there is anything legal about any of this. Many Americans don't care about the law (American exceptionalism and all that nonsense), but losing wars and crippling your military in the process should make you think again, except of course it's so brave to push a button from far away and blow away innocent people, for which medals are given out! The mind boggles! On the ground, meanwhile, where the real action is, the US military got their heads kicked in so badly they had to be pulled out by their distraught commanders.

That's the message the world now knows: illiterate peasant farmers and fishermen are more than capable of smashing the mighty US military with nothing more than old rifles and booby traps...again. Vietnam, Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, it's a never-ending list of unimaginable military fiascos, failures and, worse yet, defeats by supposed "shithole" countries who in almost every way are far more humane and civilised than our own. If Americans had any sense, they wouldn't send their boys to get mangled and turned into vegetable puree on the basis of absurd lies. They'd ensure that their own politicians are executed for high crimes and treason.

As for your link to people cheering Trump's proposal to murder the families of the terrorists, a lot can be said. But it is evidence of a peculiar strain of psychopathy that people would support what is essentially a Nazi proposal. Imagine if Bin Laden had said he supported the murder of every man, woman and child who was related to an American serviceman or servicewoman. Rightly, the world would be appalled. Trump, meanwhile, gets elected by Christians, a religion which was started by pacifists. As the historians have said time and again, if a first century Christian met a modern Christian they wouldn't know what had hit them. My take is that, a first century Christian would genuinely believe that they had met a satanist, which is what the American "Christian" right essentially is, condemning the sins of a Democrat but forgiving the sins of a Republican. What a freak show.

lastgreek said...

Again, it's called international law, something the US is a high signatory to and therefore has a great responsibility to protect, not to flout

The United States considers international law a work in progress. In other words, it makes it up as it goes along :)