19 December, 2006

Announcing the End of the American Century, even sooner than expected

Caught between Iraq and a hard place.
'Iraq' is Arabic for 'Vietnam'.

It’s reassuring - for those who have eyes and want to see – that there are signs of a "locking of arms" all around the world against “the Common Enemy”. People everywhere are beginning to be better at reading between the lies, thereby better intuiting WHO and WHAT the Common enemy is. Some clues:

*Qatar offering to pay the salaries of various Palestinian ministries to break the financial blockade;

*China and India putting aside their border disputes to form a co-operative trade relationship. That recent visit to the sub-continent by China’s President Hu will be recorded by history as a major ‘corner-turning’ event;

*India offering to allow independence to Kashmir if Pakistan reciprocates;

*the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to a Bangladeshi banker who offers low interest loans to the poor;

*Thailand’s conservative approach to [link] FTA solicitations, and adoption of its Kings’s proposed ‘Sufficiency Economy’;

*the trend to the political Left in many South American countries such as Nicuragua, Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Uraguay, with leaders determined to assist the poor in the face of crushing oppression from the Corporate rich.

The Common Enemy, as you may have guessed, is the 2% of the world’s population who control 40% of it’s wealth, wielding it as a financial weapon in order to feather their own nests ever more luxuriously:

The rich ARE getting richer.
Even the UN's own Poverty Commission admits it.

FunkyPix2 was therefore particularly pleased that Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez was returned to power with a 60% mandate, and also that there now seems to be a credible Opposition as well – a healthy situation. (PS - that’s more than Australia can claim.)

At a time when America is already on the ropes, Bush has now been further embarrassed by Chavez’s offers to assist the USA’s own poor. Now that’s what I call twisting the dagger. It yet again points up the fact that Bush continues to let them down the disadvantaged and leave them – literally - out in the cold. Blind Freddie could see that... if he chose to look.

And how's THIS? Venezuela's state-owned oil company renewed a deal to provide 40 per cent discount on furnace oil to 400,000 underprivileged people in fifteen U.S. states. The event was heavily publicized in the US to embarrass Bush. Woo-hoo! Chavez had previously rankled him in August 2005 when he offered to ship emergency fuel supplies to New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

(I do like Hugo Chavez’s pizzazz… we might invite him to join the FunkyPix2 blogging staff. But beware - he’s not bullet-proof at the ballot-box. The current perception that Chavez is a Redeemer who has come to save Venezuelans from their oppressed past has allowed him to demolish some democratic checks and balances. He would be well advised to go a little more carefully to survive, much as I admire his stance).
FunkyPix2 readers come out in support of Chavez.

The Bu$h administration deserves all the flak it’s getting. The USA missed its golden opportunity in 1989 - when the Berlin Wall came down – to swing the world towards a progressive, co-operative and peaceful path. Benevolence would have produced friends and a co-operative global spirit. Instead, with the Cold War over, the USA's greedy corporate sector seized the opportunity to become an even nastier market-place bully. It's hard to forgive deliberate greed and stupidity - and I still can't bring myself to spell america with a capital 'A'. I still think USA = USER.

It's the market, stoopid. To sell more stuff, you need willing customers who have enough income to spend. So we at FP2 would like to point out to the USA corporate sector some arithmetically simple observations. In order to achieve healthier sales/profit figures, you have 3 basic choices:

[a] increase your number of customers,
[b] increase sales to existing customers
[c] maintain, or even reduce your customer base, but screw costs right down in order to maintain or even increase the profit margin.

The last option has become the USER's preferred method. The Globocracy has decided that Margins matter more than People, who are now regarded as a renewable resource ...hence the new euphemism ‘collateral damage’. So, the big IT people outsource to India, and clothing/shoe companies run underpaid sweatshops in Shanghai, Manilla or Hanoi. It all runs smoothly because its 'out of sight, out of mind. The New Colonialism runs more efficiently on email: it saves costs because you don't physically have to go to 'those dirty places' too often.

These are object lessons in How-To-Lose-Friends-And-Influence-People-To-Resent-You.

As you watch Murdoch's ad nauseam repeats of the Trade Towers strike, also recall the many Palestinian families who were bulldozed to death in their houses at Jenin. Nobody broadcasts weepy remembrances of their agonies. Hold this thought:

Terrorism is the War of the Poor;
War is the Terrorism of the Rich.

Even more suicidally, america is actively reducing its number of customers AS WELL AS wrecking any remnants of goodwill on the part of many existing customers. This is strange behaviour, worthy of Lemmings on Diazepam. Dubya, my feeble friend, you can’t force horses to drink water. If you were a CEO in the private sector, you would have been given a sideways promotion years ago.

As a result, the rest of the world is locking arms, seeking solutions in more logical (yet often passionate) ways. Within a short time, for instance, China will become the world’s economic powerhouse – especially now that it has had its little fireside chat with India. (On this topic, also peek at my post on the future role of Burma as the vital conduit linking China and India.)

James Wolfensohn, the former president of the World Bank, predicted that as early as the year 2030, the G7 as we know it will contain only the USA and Japan from the existing leading industrialised countries. Alongside them there will be China, Russia, India and …wait for it - Brazil and Mexico. Bye-bye to France, Germany and England, the former inglorious Empires.

(I didn’t much like some of Wolfensohn’s acts when he was boss, but FP2 is often more inclined to listen to ex-leaders. After being unharnessed from the Corporate yoke, they feel freer to speak their mind… ‘shouting from the hip pocket’, if you like. You can listen to him speak here on Windows Media Player, Real Audio, or MP3. PS: He doesn’t give Australia high marks, either – no great surprise).

Now that Bush is continuing to dig America’s grave in Iraq, FunkyPix2 eagerly anticipates the day when the USA will be forced by the world community to recognise the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice. THEN we’ll REALLY see heads roll… Saddam’s trial will seem pale and comical by comparison… mere parish-pump gossip.

Under that scenario, the USA might be forced to pay such colossal reparations to all the countries it has wrecked that it will soon be bankrupted. In fact, some Abu Grahaib lawsuits have already started. More strength to their arm.

However, by FAR the biggest financial tsunamis to hit the USA, besides the expected pension blowout and Global Warming penalties, is going to be forking out MULTI BILLIONS for medical costs of military repatriation and care for its own military casualties over an entire generation. The country’s clearly bankrupting – it’s only a matter of when. By the middle of the century, might it even be forced into a position of losing its permanent seat on the UN?

Are we in fact witnessing the Beginning of the End of the american century already? Is Bush leading america, sleep-walking, into the sands of historical oblivion? Shelley’s tragic poem ‘Ozymandias’ comes to mind…

Ozymandi-Ass ....by Percy Bush Shelley

I met a blogger from an antique land,
Who said--"Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in Capitol Hill....Near them, on the sand,
(Tied round with sturdy length of pull-rope),
Half sunk a shattered long-eared visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that bombed them, and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal, these words appear:
My name is Ozymandibush, King of Kongs,
Look on my Works of Democracy & Freedom, ye Mighty,
And despair!
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal Wreck, boundless and bare
Haliburton’s lone and level sand-mines stretch far away."

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