What Happened to the American Empire?

Has anything out of the ordinary happened to the US as an imperialist power since the ascent of Trump to office? While the continuities between Trump and his predecessors are considerable, have there been any significant discontinuities that mark the first year of this presidency? Is there any reason to think that the rise of […]

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Neoliberalism, Brexit, and Higher Education

Is Brexit bad for UK universities? This appears to be the question at the centre of an article from the Times Higher Education titled “UK researchers face uncertainty over EU grant applications” (David Matthews, June 29, 2016), which was approvingly reprinted in the Bulletin of the Canadian Association of University Teachers (Vol. 63, No. 7, […]

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The Dismal “Physics” of Blowback and Overstretch

Countering Scientism with Scientism Another sort of “physics” has emerged, right from within the same establishment of military and political institutions that produced “force multipliers”. If this other physics has attained the prominence that it has, such that it now has a foothold in academia and is a firm part of popular discourse in the […]

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Military Capitalism

Security for US Capitalists: The State Department and its Global Partners Very much in line in with the idea of “connected capitalism,” the US State Department created the office of advisor for global partnerships, a Senate-confirmed position (Stavridis & Farkas, 2012, p. 17; see also DoS, 2015, 2015/3/12). The Secretary of State’s Office of Global […]

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Connected Capitalism?

“The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist—McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the builder of the F-15. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley’s technologies is called the United States Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps”. (Friedman, 1999/3/28) With keenly supportive interest from […]

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Empire’s “Mimic Men”

Imperialism by Invitation or Imitation? US efforts in remaking the international system according to an image reflecting the US are not usually in complete vain since the track has already has already been cut. To continue with the analogy, US policy planners and military analysts are concerned about widening and then paving the track so […]

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Force Multipliers and Stealth Imperialism

The force multiplier mechanism is not just something envisioned in military writing, but is instead a cornerstone of US intervention, both overt and covert. The CIA uses the term “disruption” when referring to the covert support of allied agencies who aid the CIA in the capture of so-called “terrorists”—collaborating security forces in other countries then […]

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Force Multipliers and Cuba

Much of what appears as “novel” thinking in US imperial strategies, masks deeper historical foundations. Numerous authors have already explained how Latin America and the Caribbean, from the early 1800s onward, have served as “laboratories” for incubating and developing strategies of destabilization, intervention, occupation, and counterinsurgency. More recently, counterinsurgency was being sold as a new […]

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The “Science” of Global Domination

While it is an odd mix of physics, biology, and geometry that has captured the communications strategy of military planners, the messages themselves are very telling about how such planners go about envisioning US global domination, and the parts to be played by others in assuring that dominance. Some thus speak about the “center of […]

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Scientific Imperialism

“A fundamental law of Netwonian physics applies also to military maneuver: one can achieve overwhelming force by substituting velocity for mass”. (Maj. Gen. Robert H. Scales, 2003) “Are we to reserve the techniques and the right to manipulate peoples as the privilege of a few planning, goal-oriented and power-hungry individuals to whom the instrumentality of […]

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Instrumental Partners: An Imperial Science of Agency

For an empire whose imperialism is still denied by many, a striking number of terms and concepts have been generated by US leaders that nonetheless are premised on the root idea of “force” in achieving or securing US “global leadership”. These terms command the language of US military, political, and corporate spokespersons, and they have […]

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Eight Questions and Seven Theses about Force Multipliers

“Force multipliers: Machines which allow a small effort to move a larger load are called force multipliers. Some examples of force multipliers include: a crowbar, wheelbarrow, nutcracker, and bottle opener. The number of times a machine multiplies the effort is called its mechanical advantage. The mechanical advantage of a machine is the number of times […]

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