ga('send', 'pageview');
John Passant

Site menu:



RSS Oz House



Subscribe to us

Get new blog posts delivered to your inbox.


Site search


Keep socialist blog En Passant going - donate now
If you want to keep a blog that makes the arguments every day against the ravages of capitalism going and keeps alive the flame of democracy and community, make a donation to help cover my costs. And of course keep reading the blog. To donate click here. Keep socialist blog En Passant going. More... (4)

Sprouting sh*t for almost nothing
You can prove my 2 ex-comrades wrong by donating to my blog En Passant at BSB: 062914 Account: 1067 5257, the Commonwealth Bank in Tuggeranong, ACT. More... (12)

My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole

Sick kids and paying upfront


Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. (0)



US foreign policy shift: talk first, then shoot

Barack Obama, the Commander in Chief of Terror will, just like George W Bush, use force to protect US interests.

Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy address to the Council of Foreign Relations shows the truth of this brutal reality.  Here is what she said:

…let me say our focus on diplomacy and development is not an alternative to our national security arsenal. Our willingness to talk is not a sign of weakness to be exploited. We will not hesitate to defend our friends, our interests, and above all, our people vigorously and when necessary with the world’s strongest military. This is not an option we seek nor is it a threat; it is a promise to all Americans.

Well maybe something has changed. 

Under Bush it was shoot and shoot again. Under Obama it is talk and then shoot. 

This returns the US to its more ‘normal’ pre-Bush imperialist approach.

As Thomas Friedman (one of the most influential journalists in the US) wrote some years ago in his book The Lexus and the Olive Tree:

 The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist. McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the designer of the U.S. Air Force F-15. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley’s technologies to flourish is called the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.

Obama is not challenging the right of US capital to rule the world.  He is its CEO.

As the US’s unflinching support for Israel and the wars in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq show, the result is the same – millions dead or dispossessed and billions in poverty and misery.

And for what?  To protect the interests of US capital and US global economic dominance.  To encircle and contain China.  To ensure resource security.  To defeat any challenge to US rule from ‘minor’ players, state and non-state.

US imperialism remains the same vicious and brutal regime it always was. Barack Obama, the smiling assassin, makes no difference to that. 

He is in charge of the most brutal killing machine the world has ever seen. The system and his integral role in it mean he will use that power to do whatever it takes to protect the world as is and American capital’s dominant role in it.

Imperialism is not the invasion of weak countries. It is the rivalry between between major blocs of capital which produces that outcome that is the real essence of imperialism. (See for example What is imperialism? by Patrick Weiniger in Socialist Alternative. ) 

The invasion of other countries is a consequence of imperialism, not its defining characteristic.

China in the long term threatens US economic dominance.  Since the expansion of capital around the world is almost complete, this means that China will eventually have to attempt to roll back US spheres of influence.

Inevitably the two will clash – often indirectly but in the end either directly or through some revised version of the Cold War. 

I say revised version because China and the US are integrated economically and so any Cold War is likely to politically reflect that reality.

The Chinese and US working classes have the power to prevent this.  But that is another story.  (See for example The changing shape of struggle in China.)

All imperialisms claim that they are different; they are civilising. Here is how Palestinian academic Edward Said put it:

Every single empire, in its official discourse, has said that it is not like all the others, that its circumstances are special, that it has a mission to enlighten, civilise, bring order and democracy, and that it uses force only as a last resort.

The US Empire is no different.  Hillary Clinton described the supposed rationale for US imperialism in these terms:

Liberty, democracy, justice and opportunity underlie our priorities.

The Chinese ruling elite claim the same thing. It is all lies.

As Clinton admitted:

Some accuse us of using these ideals to justify actions that contradict their very meaning. Others say we are too often condescending and imperialistic, seeking only to expand our power at the expense of others.


And that truth means that Barack Obama will continue the killing and global poverty that is an integral part of US imperialism. Nothing has really changed.

Readers might also like to look at Obama’s message to his puppets and dictators: business as usual.