[Marxism] Alfred Mc Coy - Tweting While Rome Burns

Dennis Brasky dmozart1756 at gmail.com
Wed Jan 17 01:51:45 MST 2018


*The Dynamics of Decline*

In the decade before Donald Trump entered the Oval Office, there were
already signs that this awesome apparatus was on a long-term trajectory of
decline, even if the key figures in a Washington shrouded in imperial
hubris preferred to ignore that reality. Not only has the new president’s
maladroit diplomacy accelerated this trend, but it has illuminated it in
striking ways.

Over the past half-century, the American share of the global economy has,
for instance, fallen
<https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikepatton/2016/02/29/u-s-role-in-global-economy-declines-nearly-50/#4e61075e5e9e>
from
40% in 1960 to 22% in 2014 to just 15% in 2017 (as measured by the
realistic index
<https://www.statista.com/statistics/270267/united-states-share-of-global-gross-domestic-product-gdp/>
of
purchasing power parity). Many experts now agree
<http://fortune.com/2017/02/09/study-china-will-overtake-the-u-s-as-worlds-largest-economy-before-2030/>
that
China will surpass the U.S., in absolute terms, as the world’s number one
economy within a decade.

As its global economic dominance fades, its clandestine instruments of
power have been visibly weakening as well. The NSA’s worldwide surveillance
of a remarkable array of foreign leaders, as well as millions of the
inhabitants of their countries, was once a relatively cost-effective
instrument for the exercise of global power.  Now, thanks in part to Edward
Snowden’s revelations about the agency’s snooping and the anger of targeted
allies, the political costs have risen sharply. Similarly, during the Cold
War, the CIA manipulated dozens of major elections worldwide.  Now, the
situation has been reversed with Russia using its sophisticated
cyberwarfare capabilities to interfere in the 2016 American presidential
campaign -- a clear sign of Washington’s waning global power.

Most striking of all, Washington now faces the first sustained challenge to
its geopolitical position in Eurasia. By opting to begin constructing a “new
silk road
<http://time.com/4992103/china-silk-road-belt-xi-jinping-khorgos-kazakhstan-infrastructure/>,”
a trillion-dollar infrastructure of railroads and oil pipelines across that
vast continent, and preparing to build naval bases in the Arabian and South
China seas, Beijing is mounting a sustained campaign to undercut
Washington’s long dominance over Eurasia.

http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/176373/tomgram%3A_alfred_mcc
oy%2C_tweeting_while_rome_burns/#more



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