Dawn Pisturino's Blog

My Writing Journey

Radical Writings: Political Corruption and Global Capitalism

on June 3, 2019

Earth

 

One of the myths perpetuated by American business is that wealth is somehow created out of nothing. Wealth, under capitalism, is not “created,” it is merely transferred from one segment of the population to another.

This can easily be seen on a global scale. When Asia’s economy was booming, the American economy was lagging behind. Now that Asia is struggling to maintain itself, the American economy is “robust” (according to Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan) [1999].

The Middle East has been a key contributor to American [and European and Russian] prosperity at its own expense. Dr. Ilyas Bayunus, professor of sociology at SUNY Ithaca, explains it this way:

“When looked at from a Muslim and Third World viewpoint, we can see an . . . answer: that of neocolonialism, or the use of local proxies to exploit local resources for the former colonial master’s benefit. Muslim countries, regardless of their colonial past . . . are now submitting to neocolonialism . . . [which] seeks indirect rule through rationalizing, apologizing, seeking excuses for its actions. However, the option to intervene with force is always open. It is a form of remote-control colonial rule and is far more economical and cost effective in terms of men, machines, and time invested.

“In essence, colonialism and neocolonialism serve those multinational industries that are (or were) in the vanguard of creating western global hegemony. Both seek to ensure perpetually dependent ‘peripheries’ ruled by a technologically superior industrialized western global economic system. Hence, colonialism and neocolonialism use ‘undeveloped’ countries as reservoirs of cheap resources and dirt-cheap labor, and thus actually discourages any significant industrialization in the Third World . . . What this means is that western economics and industrial progress depends on the rest of the world remaining impoverished.

“In this respect, the west lures, intimidates, bribes, and props up insecure and archaic monarchs, undereducated but arrogant military rulers, and opportunist pseudodemocrats. This is especially so in the Muslim world, where the West sometimes even handpicks ‘yes men’ to rule on its behalf . . .

“Americans [and Europeans and Russians] are the inventors as well as the greatest beneficiaries of neocolonialism . . . As the economic interests of American multinationals expanded, American power also expanded. In the Middle East, this was especially true after WW II. Those who resisted and continue to resist this policy of neocolonialism were called ‘fundamentalists’ and other names, ostracized internationally, and branded as practitioners of ‘state-sponsored terrorism.’ Iran, Sudan, Libya, and Syria are cases in point.

“American multinationals are the dynamos behind and the main beneficiaries of American neocolonialism. Some of the major American multinationals are legends: Exxon, General Electric, General Dynamics, Union Carbide, General Motors, Bank of America, and IT&T. Today, there are new players, such as IBM, Microsoft, CNN, Texas Instruments, Smith Corona, McDonalds, CocaCola, and Kentucky Fried Chicken. We now speak of the “McDonaldization,” “Colaization,” or Marlboroization” of the world.

“If highly developed western businesses expand in the Third World, they invest in poor countries and provide jobs. In this transaction, however, Third World countries become partially or totally dependent upon the investing business, which entails negative consequences . . . In general, the multinationals’ influence is seen in their contribution in terms of investments, taxes, bonuses, and other charitable contributions if and when it suits them. They invariably try to bribe or intimidate host officials to create monopolies, even though this means tampering with the host country’s power apparatus both economically and politically. Whoever challenges their hegemony faces great personal risk: President Allende of Chile, a highly reform-minded and elected leader was overthrown and murdered by his military, which was believed to have been carrying out the orders of IT&T [ which was recently indicted for corrupt business practices] . . . [1999]

“Even if a Third World worker finds a job paying subsistence wages, he or she remains vulnerable, because of job insecurity, to employer blackmail. Economic investment in the Third World, however sizable, remains under the auspices of these multinationals and does not constitute progressive development [in spite of the claims put forth by the U.S. government and its involvement with GATT and NAFTA] . . . It creates serious wage stratification and differentials and, especially in smaller host economies, engenders inflation to such a degree that those who are unemployed or have low-paying jobs have to resort to illegal means to survive. Whenever or wherever these multinationals have been given a free hand, they create monopolies [illegal in the U.S.], pay the lowest possible wages [why we have a set minimum wage in the U.S.], fix prices [also illegal in the U.S.], and take excessive profits [considered immoral by many people]. Obviously, none of this benefits the host economy [except the politicians who accept the bribes and perks offered.] And so most of the Third World remains Third World, even almost fifty [or more] years after de Gaulle coined the term.” (Islamic Horizons, September/October 1996)

The turbulence in the Middle East will not end until America — the bully, the “Great Satan” — removes its presence and stops interfering in Middle Eastern culture, religion, politics, and economics.

Dawn Pisturino

1999

Published in Discussion Bulletin, March-April 1999. Featured on the Committee for Direct Democracy website and in the Committee for Direct Democracy Information Packet, 1998-2000.

2019 Response:

The world is a different place than 1999. Globalization, which propped up other countries and exploded corporate profits, hurt American workers. No matter how much Americans complained, no one listened. President Barack Obama told the American people that the jobs were not coming back and we should just get over it. Radical Islamists in the Middle East, who did not want Islam subsumed by secularism, turned to anti-American rhetoric and violence to make their message heard. We saw the rise of Al-Qaeda, ISIS, and the 9/11 attacks on American soil. The country went through a recession which seemed like it would never end. Donald Trump came along with his “Make America Great Again” message and won the 2016 election. Since then, he has been harassed and persecuted by the very same people and organizations who supported the global economy and ignored American workers. President Trump is making sure that the wealth is flowing TO America and American workers and not AWAY from America and American workers. Competition is the heart of capitalism. But competition has to benefit AMERICA and not just the other party. This is at the core of President Trump’s message.

Dawn Pisturino, June 3, 2019

Copyright 1999-2019 DawnPisturino. All Rights reserved.


2 responses to “Radical Writings: Political Corruption and Global Capitalism

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