John Perkins, the bestselling author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, has a new book out, Hoodwinked: An Economic Hit Man Reveals Why the World Financial Markets Imploded—and What We Need to Do to Remake Them.
Here, on Democracy Now!, he outlines the problems with psychotic capitalism the West has embraced:
I think it’s fair to say that we economic hit men have managed to create the world’s first truly global empire. And it’s basically a secret empire.
We do it in many ways, but principally, we identify a country that has resources that corporations covet, like oil, arrange a huge loan to that country from the World Bank or one of its sisters. The money never actually goes to the country; it goes to our own corporations to build the infrastructure projects in that country that help a few very wealthy people, but don’t benefit the majority of the people, who are too poor to buy electricity or have cars to drive on the highways. And yet, they’re left holding a huge debt that they can’t repay.
So we go back at some point and say, “You know, you can’t pay your debts. Give us a pound of flesh. Sell your oil real cheap to our oil companies. Vote with us on the next critical UN vote. Allow us to build a military base in your backyard.” Something along these lines.
And when we fail—as I talk in my books, I failed with Jaime Roldos, president of Ecuador, Omar Torrijos of Panama—the Jackals go in and either overthrow or assassinate these leaders. And if the Jackals fail, as they did in Iraq, then we send in the military.