The recent US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were neither necessary nor successful militarily. They allowed massive public spending and justified the increase in “defense” spending in federal budgets. The Soviet Union as a great enemy was gone. An unlimited world war on “terrorism” provided a temporary foreign danger until today’s pivot to a new cold war with China could take hold as the main justification. But whatever global protection the U.S. military offers today’s global and vulnerable supply chains, massive military spending has also contributed to neglecting infrastructure maintenance. It has become urgent. The problem of old guns for butter is generally associated with the decline of the economic system.
As the US government desperately tries to manage the rising costs of its foreign and domestic programs, it resorts to a modern version of the “currency debasement” of the ancients. The Federal Reserve System monetizes deficits in rapidly growing proportions. With unemployment, tight wages and excessive personal debt levels, money creation does not turn into real investment but into stock markets.
Inflation was therefore real there, fueling ever greater inequality of wealth. We have the promise that money creation will never focus on goods and services, thus causing classic inflation. We are confident that the Fed will register and control such inflation if it threatens. These promises and assurances are meant to prevent what officials know to be terrifying possibilities.
The January 6 assault on Capitol Hill made a shocked nation more aware of the depth of its social divisions and the disintegration of its social cohesion. Those who attacked the Capitol responded to the decline of capitalism with desperate resistance: to an electoral result, to political liberalism, to multiculturalism, to secularism, etc. Like Trump, they tried to reverse the decline of capitalism. Because their ideology prevents them from recognizing this decline, they reason differently. They blame and therefore seek to dismantle the government.
Yet the US government, via the bipartisan oligopoly in US politics, has steadfastly supported US capitalism. The parties differ in part and only on how best to proceed. As the decline progresses, despite the efforts of the parties to stop it, the growing frustration eventually boils over. The efforts become extreme and thus aggravate rather than solve the problem. Members of Trump’s cabinet have often devoted themselves to destroying their respective departments. The January 6 assailants also sought to destroy. Such self-destruction is a sign of an advanced decline of the system.
Extract: “ Growing Desperation as America’s Capitalist System Declines ”