The questions of US imperialism, economic hegemony and corporate control of the world’s resources are the subject of massive popular discussion in a time of escalating conflict, inequality and deepening economic recession. Following the mass public mobilisation during the Obama election campaign, the US government is placed in a role of critical responsibility and must now lead the way in fostering greater international cooperation.
The global economic system has come to be dominated de facto by institutions subscribing to and enforcing the neoliberal agenda. Since the end of World War II, these institutions have sought not only to regulate but, in a manner reminiscent of classical colonialism, to control global resources facilitated by the emergence of the neoliberal state. Consequently, domestic democratic institutions have been negated and civil society movements have been marginalized. Contrary to earlier assumptions about the erosion of state sovereignty in the wake of globalization, a strong state has, in fact, risen not to represent the people's sovereign will but, rather, to fulfill and pursue the corporate-driven neoliberal agenda.
Clichés are an inherent feature of American politics, and this election year is no exception. They surface in any bar or coffee shop where there’s a political discussion. Most contain at least a kernel of truth, and are harmless enough, but one of the most common -- the old bromide that if you fail to vote you have no right to complain or criticize the system -- is poison. This verbal tool of the established order, intentional or not, encourages resistance to change and preservation of the status quo.
Voters on the progressive wing of the Democratic Party are rightly disappointed by the similarity of the foreign policy positions of the two remaining Democratic Party presidential candidates, Senator Hillary Clinton and Senator Barack Obama. However, there are still some real discernable differences to be taken into account. Indeed, given the power the United States has in the world, even minimal differences in policies can have a major difference in the lives of millions of people.
On January 15, Michael Shank interviewed Noam Chomsky on the latest developments in U.S. policy toward regional challenges to U.S. power. In the second part of this two-part interview, Chomsky also discussed the Bank of the South, nationalization of resources, and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
“On trade, we must trust American workers to compete with anyone in the world and empower them by opening up new markets overseas. Today, our economic growth increasingly depends on our ability to sell American goods and crops and services all over the world. So we're working to break down barriers to trade and investment wherever we can.”
The military adventurers of the Bush administration have much in common with the corporate leaders of the defunct energy company Enron. Both groups of men thought that they were the "smartest guys in the room," the title of Alex Gibney's prize-winning film on what went wrong at Enron. The neoconservatives in the White House and the Pentagon outsmarted themselves. They failed even to address the problem of how to finance their schemes of imperialist wars and global domination.
In his Congressional office in Washington. His office is spare, with two sagging leather chairs, a brown leather couch and a desk. There are framed pictures of Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on the wall over the couch, all with accompanying quotes. King's "I Have a Dream" speech is on his poster-sized portrait. Kucinich keeps a white cloth from the Dalai Lama in his office. He has a bust of Gandhi and a picture representing "conscious light" - a gift from Brahma Kumaris nuns, as well as a Tibetan dragon washbowl. On his desk are two heavy crucifixes once worn by Catholic nuns who taught him. Outside his office door in the small reception area are framed letters of support from George McGovern, Robert F. Kennedy and Hubert H. Humphrey.