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

Sunday, January 1, 2017

The Coup against Trump and His Military - Wall Street Defense

Click here to access article by retired Professor James Petras from his blog.

Petras is another perceptive writer who offers his views on the apparent ruling class split between what I will refer to as the Obama faction and the Trump faction. He also expresses his views in a PDF document that he posted the following day on Friday entitled "The Anti-Trump Institutional Coup and the Visible Operatives". I will tease out his position based on these two articles.

Petras sees the Obama faction as a more established one that has been guiding his policies, and whose backers have a visceral opposition to Russia, China, and Iran as has been evident all along during his administration. The Trump faction, on the other hand, want to expand markets to serve the commercial interests of major capitalists. Also with the sole exception of corporate media who support the Obama faction, he sees the split over these issues as cutting across every powerful interest group in the capitalist ruling class such as Wall Street, the military establishment, what I refer to as government puppets in Congress who are funded by both factions and serve both factions, and even several of his Cabinet appointees who support "bellicose policies" presumably toward Russia, China, and Iran.

Petras makes the following claim about the Trump faction:
Trump seeks to implement his foreign policy of ‘market deals’, renegotiation of trade agreements with China, oil and aerospace trade-offs with Iran, and the termination of sanctions with Russia. President Trump will declare ‘let the oil deals flow’!
I have not seen much evidence that the Trump camp wants to make deals with China and Iran--quite to the contrary. Thus, my suspicion is that Trump will be used to make deals with Russia in an effort to split them off from China as I explained on the 15th of December in an article entitled "My ('conspiracy') theory about the emergence of the Trump faction of the ruling capitalist class". In fact, the whole contentious contest between these two factions may be used as a ruse to hide this new strategy.

What is certain is that Trump's domestic policies will favor more austerity policies and likely further cuts to, privatization and/or abolition of, social supports such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Affordable Care Act.