The Master Game

The Israeli elite’s mini-game of using a façade of democracy to provide cover for expansion looks just like the U.S. elite’s global game of powering its military-industrial complex for elite profit, but each is strangely invisible to most voters.

Under the cover of electoral circuses and Potemkin village crises about a nuclear Iran or Islamic terror, the right wing elite covers up its own terrorists who burn olive groves and steal land, protected by the army and police. Netanyahu creates smoke for international consumption while real Israeli policy is made on the ground. I do not know why this charade is so difficult for Americans to see through. In the States, the elite is playing precisely the same game: using “Iraqi nukes,”  “wars on terror” and a whole series of financial disaster scenarios from the “collapse of our financial system” in 2008 (unless we bail out the billionaires) to “fiscal cliffs” and the “debt ceiling” at the moment to keep the restive but naïve population on edge. Disaster looms. Will our brave leaders be able to save us? The world waits breathlessly as new, glib, photogenic representatives of the elite step forward with smiles and wonderful speeches that catch the headlines for 24 hours before being forgotten.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, policy is implemented on the ground. Israeli expansionists—Netanyahu, Lieberman, and the settlers busy shoving their Indians onto reservations—expand and get paid for doing so by a submissive U.S. Congress. U.S. empire-builders–some using arms to spread military bases and others with their chokehold on tax policy and the justice system by defrauding the middle class to transfer its wealth into the hands of the billionaires who need it so much more—build empires.

At the core of this process lies a powerful circular dynamic. Imagine a whirlpool fed by two currents—one being the force of arms and the other the force of money. Money buys arms, which are used to seize the power necessary to get more money, which is used…You figure it out. If you want this spelled out in academic terms, it is a reinforcing feedback loop, one of the core concepts of system dynamics: war returns profit which enables further war. Just like a whirlpool, as Dynamic A (money) reinforces Dynamic B (war)—and vice versa—the speed of the current accelerates. As long as it is fed, the monster keeps growing; it does not stop of its own accord.

Why can’t outsiders—“the people,” progressives—stop it? They do not understand the fundamental nature of the linkage between the two input flows. A reformer, e.g., a finance expert such as Elizabeth Warren or Bill Black, is likely to focus on one part or the other. If one spends one’s life trying to reform the domestic financial system, one is unlikely to see how it is linked to a foreign policy designed to control. It is, simply, hard to see the big picture. The masters of the universe who play this game of course do everything they can to blow smoke over the big picture: concealing it is the core strategy of the Master Game. Therefore, those trying to starve the monster end up being split into two camps, fighting the same fight but not realizing it and thus not coordinating their actions, allowing the elite to play domestic financial reformers off against foreign policy reformers.

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