I’d vote for a Republican, if I could find one.

—A Dear Reader


Human progress, at least recently, has been largely a shift from brute force to brute fraud.

Fake money is used to rob people of trillions of dollars. Robs them of what little brain power they had. Fake democracy, the Deep State, and runaway regulations rob them of their liberty.

And the longest war in U.S. history robs them of their children and their money.

Today’s subject is war. And we’ll come back to it in a minute.


Down in the tropics

The change in this part of the world is breathtaking. It is as if the development that began in Florida in the 1920s skipped over the Caribbean and started up again on the Yucatán Peninsula in the 1990s.

Warm weather, white sand beaches, and a cost of living well below that of the Florida coast. We guessed yesterday that U.S. and Canadian retirees would find it irresistible. An apartment that costs $500,000 in Florida might only cost $200,000 here.

Mexico America military

Beach at Tulum


The missing part is medical care. When Mexican doctors and hospitals begin accepting Medicare payments, it will open the door to millions of retirees more.

They will be looking for a good life down in the tropics…And looking to get away from snow, inflation, and crime north of the Rio Grande.

But let’s move on…

Boys in uniform

Of all the claptrap agencies and scammy departments in the swampy bayous of the Deep State, the military sits on the highest ground. It is considered by many to be the most reliable institution in the U.S. In many circles, criticizing the boys in uniform is considered unpatriotic, almost treasonous.

But we’re not criticizing the boys in uniform. It’s their bosses — both in and out of uniform — we have in mind. Not only do they waste trillions of dollars, they toss around the lives of their men and women as if they were tin soldiers. A thousand to one hell-hole. Two thousand to another. Some are instructed to kill. Others get their legs blown off.

As for patriotism, they treat it like small change. They use it like the Federal Reserve uses fake money — to rip off the public.

Genuine patriotism, like real money, is limited and precious. Waste it on stupid wars and you may have none left when the real shooting starts.

(Our own patriotism, by the way, is beyond question. If southern Anne Arundel County, Maryland, is ever invaded by hordes of Chinese or New Yorkers, we will be the first to flee across the Chesapeake. If they want it that badly, they can have it.)

Looking out for No. 1

But let’s stick with the Pentagon.

The defining feature of an empire is its military. It uses armed force to rule over other nations. Then, as the empire ages and degenerates, the army typically shucks its civilian control and looks out for No. 1. That is, it ceases to serve the homeland at all; it serves only itself.

That is the real explanation for the Pentagon’s misadventures in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere.

How many ordinary citizens would have been willing to sacrifice their children…or their money…to stomp on the Shiites, or the Sunni, or the Druze, or the Zoroastrians, the Kurds, the Wahabi, the Pashtuns, Punjabis, Balochs, Gilaks, Kawliya, Lurs, Mandeans, Mazanderani, Nawar, Tats, or any of the other strange tribes around the Mideast?

The homeland had no dog in any of those fights. Who were the good guys? The bad guys? Who knew? Nobody…

Deep State and the military

But the Deep State didn’t need to know. The War on Terror brought the military and its contractors billions of dollars. It brought stock options, consulting gigs, think-tank sinecures, promotions, medals, and fancy houses in Northern Virginia.

To the military/industrial/surveillance chiefs, 56,000 American casualties, including 10,000 dead, and as many as a million deaths among the local people, must have seemed like a small price to pay. Compared to WWI, WWII, or Vietnam, it was a bargain.

And now, it appears that a new peace treaty with Afghanistan will more or less return things to the way they were before the U.S. got involved. And Iraq wants to kick U.S. soldiers out of the country.

A commander with any real sense of honor would plunge his sword into his chest, like Brutus after he was defeated by Antony, or Antony, himself, after he was defeated by Octavian.

Or, at least, he should go home…and in the dark of night, pray for forgiveness from a generous god. But no…

Intellectual fog

A new report, out last week, tells us that the gap between U.S. defense spending and that of other nations is increasing. The Deep State’s armed wing now spends nearly four times as much as its nearest rival, China. The Military Balance Blog reports:

In 2019, the United States remained by far the world’s largest defence spender, widening the gap between it and the second largest spender, China. US investments in weapons procurement and R&D alone were larger than China’s total defence budget. The United States’ defence investments in weapons procurement and R&D were also worth around four times as much as European states’ combined.


The simple answer is that the money appears to be free — it flushes freely out of the fountain of all things fake. And, now, President Eisenhower’s nightmare plays out during working hours: The military and its cronies have so much power and money available, they can buy or bully the votes they need to get more.

And then, the fake money does its work — corroding, corrupting…rotting the military as it has the economy, Congress, and the bureaucracy. Tim Bakken, a professor at West Point, concludes:

The hubris, arrogance, and self-righteousness of officers have isolated the military from modern thinking and mores. As a result, the military operates in an intellectual fog, relying on philosophy and practices that literally originated at West Point two hundred years ago.

In an interview with The American Conservative, Bakken went on:

In the end, the proof is in the pudding, in the wars in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq…the generals do not know how to win these wars, and they don’t have the courage to tell Americans that we can’t win and that we shouldn’t be fighting them.

Best and brightest in the military?

Come the next real war, and the U.S. military will probably get whupped…badly. It is too larded with fat-duff careerists and expensive, over-sophisticated weapons to be an effective fighting force. And its standards are too low.

West Point, for example, claims to be a top-notch center of learning, equal to Harvard or Yale. It is a lie, says Bakken. The American Conservative elaborates:

West Point boasted that it received 15,171 applicants for the class of 2016, but only accepted a fraction, suggesting an acceptance rate in the low double-digits, if not single digits, like Yale and Harvard. The reality is, the school was counting student requests for information as ‘applications.’

It turns out that the school only received 2,394 ‘fully qualified and nominated’ applications that year. Of that number, 1,358 were accepted for the class of 2016, resulting in an acceptance rate of 56.7 percent. He said he and other professors raised concerns about this, but nothing changed.

As far as West Point only taking the ‘best and brightest,’ Bakken notes that West Point and the equally lionized Naval Academy in Annapolis were ranked 111 and 112 in average SAT scores among American colleges and universities in a 2014 study.

As the end of the British empire came into focus, in WWI, their army was similarly incompetent. The top brass, comfortably lodged in London, wasted hundreds of thousands of young men in foolish trench warfare. It was a case of ‘lions led by donkeys,’ said the analysts.

And now, as the U.S. empire reaches its closing chapters, we should expect more mistakes. With luck, the jackasses in the Pentagon will stick to fraud and keep the death toll down.

But we wait to find out…




Bill Bonner