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Libertarian ideology favors privatization. However, in practice privatization is usually very different in result than libertarian ideology postulates. Almost always, privatization becomes a way for well-connected private interests to loot both the public purse and the general welfare. Most privatizations, such as those that have occurred in France and UK during the neoliberal era, and in Greece today and Ukraine tomorrow, are lootings of public assets by politically-connected private interests.
Another form of privatization is to turn traditional government functions, such as prison operation and many supply functions of the armed services, such as feeding the troops, over to private companies at a large increase in cost to the public. Essentially, the libertarian ideology is used to provide lucrative public contracts to a few favored persons who then reward the politicians. This is called “free enterprise”. The privatization of prisons in the US is an example of the extraordinary cost and injustice of privatization. Privatization of prisons requires ever higher rates of incarceration in order to build profitability. The US, supposedly “a land of liberty” has by far the highest incarceration rates of all countries. The “free” US has not only the highest percentage of its population in prison but also the highest absolute number. “Authoritarian” China with four times the US population has fewer citizens in prison.
This article shows how well prison privatization works for well-connected private interests : http://www.globalresearch.ca/privatization-of-the-us-prison-system/5377824 It also shows the extraordinary shame, corruption, and discredit that prison privatization has brought to the US. A few years ago I wrote about the conviction of two judges who were paid by privatized juvenile detention facilities to sentence kids to their facilities.
As Alain of Lille and later Karl Marx said, “Money is all”. In America money is all that is important to the political system and to the bulk of the population. Essentially, America has no other values.
Another great libertarian fantasy is Wall Street. In the libertarian mythology Wall Street is the mother of entrepreneurs and of the start-up companies that blossom into industrial, manufacturing, and commercial giants. In actual fact, Wall Street is the mother of enormous corruption. As Nomi Prins shows in All The President’s Bankers, it has always been the case. Recently, there has been a spate of Wall Street whistleblowers. Many are reported by Pam Martins on her site, Wall Street On Parade (1). Unlike libertarian ideologues, Prins and Marten are former Wall Street insiders and know what they are talking about.
All US financial markets are rigged for the benefit of a few. We have had the exposure of high frequency trading front-running buy and sell orders. We have had the exposure of the big banks rigging the LIBOR interest rate and the London gold price fix. We have had the exposure of the Federal Reserve rigging via its dependent bullion banks the price of gold in the futures market. We have had the exposure in Congressional hearings of the rigging of metal and commodity prices. The dollar’s exchange value is rigged. And so forth. Yet no heads have rolled. Recently a SEC prosecuting attorney, James Kidney, retired. Upon his retirement, he proclaimed that his cases against the criminal big banks have been suppressed by SEC higher ups who have their eyes fixed on big jobs with the banks they are protecting while in government service. So there you have it. The United States government is so overwhelmingly corrupt that even the financial regulatory agencies have been corrupted by the money of the private capitalists they are supposed to regulate. America the corrupted. That is what we have become.
Not even Vladimir Putin understands how totally corrupt and insensitive to humanity Washington is. Putin’s response to the Ukraine crisis created by Washington’s coup in Kiev is to rely on “Russia’s Western partners”, the UN, the Obama regime, John Kerry, etc., to work out a reasonable solution to the crisis. Putin’s hope for a diplomatic solution is unrealistic. The NATO governments are bought-and-paid-for by Washington. For example, Germany is not a country. Germany is a mere piece of Washington’s empire. The German government will do as Washington says.The German government represents Washington’s agenda. The European governments to whom Putin is speaking are not listening.
Paul Wolfowitz, the neoconservative who as Deputy Secretary of Defense presided over the orchestration of the false evidence used by the Bush regime to launch Washington’s wars in the Middle East, declared the minimization of Russian power as the “first objective” of US foreign and military policy : “Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power”. What Wolfowitz means by “hostile power” is any power independent of Washington’s hegemony.
Washington overthrew the elected Ukraine government in order to orchestrate a crisis that would distract Russia from Washington’s adventures in Syria and Iran and in order to demonize Russia as an invader rebuilding an empire that is a danger to Europe. Washington will use this demonization in order to break-up growing economic relationships between Russia and Europe. The purpose of sanctions is not to punish Russia, but to break up economic relationships. Washington’s strategy is audacious and brings risk of war. If the West had an independent media, Washington’s plan would fail. But instead of a media, the West has a Ministry of Propaganda. The New York Times has even found a replacement for Judith Miller. As you might have forgot or never known, Judith Miller was the New York Times reporter who filled the Times with Bush regime neoconservative lies about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Instead of examining and exposing the Bush regime’s false claims, the New York Times bolstered the regime’s case for war by using the newspaper’s credibility to advance the neoconservative war agenda.
The new Judith Miller is David M. Herszenhorn, with accomplices Andrew Roth, Noah Sneider, and Andrew Higgins. Herszenhorn dismisses the totality of Russian media accounts of events in Ukraine as “an extraordinary propaganda campaign” designed to hide the fact from the Russian population that the entire Ukraine crisis is the fault of the Russian government : “And so began another day of bluster and hyperbole, of the misinformation, exaggerations, conspiracy theories, overheated rhetoric and, occasionally, outright lies about the political crisis in Ukraine that have emanated from the highest echelons of the Kremlin and reverberated on state-controlled Russian television, hour after hour, day after day, week after week”. I have never read a more blatant piece of propaganda than Herszenhorn’s. He bases his report on two “authorities”, Lilia Shevtsova of the American-funded Carnegie Moscow Center, and Mark Galeotti, a NYU professor. According to Herszenhorn, the widespread protests in eastern Ukraine are entirely the fault of the protesters who are putting on a show for propaganda purposes. The protests are not a response to words and deeds of the Washington-installed stooge government in Kiev. Herszenhorn dismisses reports of extreme nationalist neo-nazi Russophobia as “sinister claims” and regards the Washington-imposed unelected government in Kiev as legal. However, Herszenhorn regards governments formed as a result of referendums to be illegal unless approved by Washington. If you place your faith in Herszenhorn, you will dismiss all reports such as those below as lies and propaganda :
The Western World is the World of the Matrix protected by the Ministry of Propaganda. Western populations are removed from reality. They live in a world of propaganda and disinformation. The actual situation is far worse than the “Big Brother” reality described by George Orwell in his book, 1984. The ideology known as neoconservatism, which has controlled US governments since Clinton’s second term, has the world set on a path to war and destruction. Instead of raising questions about this path, the Western media hurries the world down the path. Read what medical doctors report will be the result of the neoconservative Obama regime’s belief that nuclear war can be won : http://original.antiwar.com/lawrence-wittner/2014/04/14/your-doctors-are-worried/
The Chinese government has called for “de-americanizing the world”. The Russian legislature understands that being part of the dollar payments system is a Russian subsidy to American Imperialism. The Russian legislator, Mikhail Degtyaryov told Izvestia that “The dollar is evil. It is a dirty green paper stained with blood of hundreds of thousands of civilian citizens of Japan, Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Korea and Vietnam”. However, Russian industry spokesmen, possibly on Washington’s payroll but likely just people without a clue, said that Russia was bound by contracts to the dollar system and that perhaps in 10 or 15 years Russia could take a more intelligent approach. That is assuming that Russia would still be capable of acting in its own interests after suffering 10 or 15 years more of US financial imperialism. Every country that wishes to have an independent existence without living under Washington’s thumb should immediately depart the dollar payment system, which is a form of US control over other countries. That is the only purpose that the dollar system serves.
Many countries are afflicted by economists trained in the US in the neoliberal tradition. Their US education is a form of brainwashing that ensures that their advice renders their governments impotent against Washington’s imperialism. Despite the obvious threats that Washington poses, many do not recognize the threats because of Washington’s pose as “the greatest democracy”. However, scholars looking for this democracy cannot find it in the US. The evidence is that the US is an oligarchy, not a democracy. An oligarchy is a country that is run for private interests. These private interests –Wall Street, the military/security complex, oil and natural gas, and agribusiness– seek domination, a goal well served by the neoconservative ideology of US hegemony.
The American Oligarchs win even when they lose. Finally, Washington’s notorious torture prison, Abu Ghraib, has been closed. But not by Washington. The Iraqi city fell last week to “defeated” al-Qaeda. Remember, we won the war in Iraq. $3 trillion wasted, but that’s not the way the military/security complex sees it. The war was a great victory for profits. How much longer will dumbshit americans fall for the flag-waving deception ?
The Republicans used the wars in order to create huge budget deficits and national debt that are now being used to dismantle the social safety net, including Social Security and Medicare. There’s talk of privatizing Social Security and Medicare. More profits for Oligarchs in the offering. The gullibility of the American population is really without compare. The gullibility of the American public will doom the world to extinction.
Paul CRAIG ROBERTS