Is unlimited credit funding war?

Jan 12, 2015

- By Bill Bonner

Bill Bonner
Rancho Santana, Nicaragua

Dear Diary,

It took only 48 hours. And France took the bait.

Rather than declare the murder of Charlie Hebdo cartoonists a crime, which it surely was, French Prime minister Manuel Valls turned an act of murder into an act of war, which it surely wasn't.

"France Declares 'War'," says the headline in Sunday's New York Times.

And now the killers are martyrs in a holy war against the West. Western nations can now roll out more armored vehicles, more airport security, more snooping and more spending all in the name of protecting citizens from the fanatical towelheads.

Paris looked like a city under siege when we went through on the Saturday.

Helicopters overhead. Gendarmes everywhere. Fear and loathing down every rue. Even with Francois Hollande at its head, the French government seemed suddenly robust, flexing its muscles, its cheeks rosy and flush with energy and purpose. "War is the health of the state," said Randolph Bourne.

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"Compare what these Islamic commandos did to Charlie Hebdo and what your Navy Seal team did to Osama bin Laden," suggested a provocative Frenchman.

"Both were trained to kill. Both killed unarmed people in the name of their cause. Bin Laden had been accused of a serious crime, which he denied. No trial was ever held. No verdict rendered. The cartoonists had been also accused of a serious crime too, at least as the radical Islamists saw it. In both attacks, the killers gunned down innocent people who hadn't been accused of anything."

"What's the difference?" he asked, and he did not stay for answer.

We had an answer. In our western tradition, making fun of someone is not a capital crime. Plotting the murder of thousands is. But the man had a point. The perps - the brothers Kouachi - simply believed in a different tradition, a different set of rules and a different kind of justice. Why not just treat them like any other criminals?

Their beliefs may be strange, but their plan of action was familiar; it came directly from the revolutionarys' handbook. Their attack probably aimed to do more than just avenge the mockery of the prophet Mohammed. There are 5 million Muslims in France. Most of them are sensible, law-abiding people. Few take jihad very seriously. Murdering high-profile targets was designed to rally these secular Muslims to the cause. Terror would harden the majority French against them, and provoke the government to over-react. They must have been hoping that France would declare 'war.' Not only would this give the murderers the dignity of soldiers, it will help radicalize the minority, providing the jihadists with more recruits and financial support.

The United States has been a big help to radical Islam. It was US treatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib that the Kouchis credited with having convinced them to become a terrorists. Bombing, droning, torturing, invading...killing thousands of innocent people as it throws its weight around ...the Pentagon has done its part, creating and arming ISIS as well as other violent groups. Now, the terrorists are getting the same cooperation from France.

Our beat is money, not geo-politics. The link, however, is credit. Without the almost-unlimited credit of the post-1971 world, today's grotesqueries in politics and finance wouldn't exist. Excess credit - above and beyond the ratio of credit to GDP that existed up until 1980 - added about $35 trillion to America's spending power since the '70s. Americans borrowed and spent. Planet GDP spun faster and faster as people spent more and more money they didn't have on more and more things they didn't need - including war.

More to come...

Bill Bonner is the President & Founder of Agora Inc, an international publisher of financial and special interest books and newsletters.

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1 Responses to "Is unlimited credit funding war?"

yogendra pal singh

Jan 13, 2015

It makes sense all through the article. Thoughts resemble to Bertrand Russel . I have liked & I support the views.

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