We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Friday, December 5, 2014

Defending Dollar Imperialism

Click here to access article by Mike Whitney from CounterPunch.

I think that this blogger, also from Washington state (same as myself), has the best current grasp of the underlying Empire strategies behind Saudi Arabia's oil-price war. To accomplish this, he draws on the investigations of other important geopolitical analysts and adds his own contribution to the giant puzzle--support of the US dollar as the backbone that is propping up the US Empire. 
...gas [from the GCC) will also be denominated in dollars which will shore up demand for USDs thus perpetuating the petrodollar recycling system which creates a vast market for US debt and which helps to keep US stocks and bonds in the nosebleed section. And that’s what this is all about, preserving dollar supremacy by forcing nations to hold excessive amounts of USDs to use in their energy transactions and to service their dollar-denominated debts.

As long as Washington can control the world’s energy supplies and force the world to trade in dollars, it can spend well in excess of what it produces and not be held to account. It’s like having a credit card you never have to pay off.
Meanwhile, here in the US the media is providing cover for this strategy with stories about a price war against US shale oil producers to protect Saudi market share. As usual, this is nonsense to hide the real objectives: destroy Russia's economy, damage Iran's and others such as Venezuela, and secure the US dollar. While the price war will hurt smaller US oil companies, it must be kept in mind that there are many figures in the ruling class who are tied to major oil companies that see this as an opportunity to buy out the failing smaller oil companies at bargain prices.