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New Economic Imperialism Essay

5417 words - 22 pages

New Economic Imperialism

Those in power define national interests as the preservation of the existing set of economic, social, and political relationships. Therefore, the national interest of the supranational capitalist society is the interests of the upper class, allied throughout the globe. The United States capitalist class has proposed to preserve and extend U.S. capitalism by a policy of empire building to satisfy the need for large export markets that could supply cheap inputs and guarantee consumption.

The road to the current economic imperial structure prevalent in international affairs is a long and complicated one. During the twentieth century the capitalist elite began forming organizations in which to formulate and implement their policies on the supranational level, most of which were founded by John D. Rockefeller based on principles developed by Cecil Rhodes. These included the Council on Foreign Relations, Trilateral Commission and countless others scattered throughout the developed world. During the 1940s they began to create institutions with real power, sanctioned by nation-states, which would have the ability to implement policies on the international level, something they needed. These included the United Nations, the political arm, NATO, the military arm, and the two monetary funds created during the conference held in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire in 1944: the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. It was decided international monetary institutions were needed to “stabilize currencies and to facilitate programs of capital investments for constructive undertakings in backward and underdeveloped regions.” (Sklar 148) Corporations would float bonds guaranteed by the government to tap private money now withheld from foreign investment because of risk.

The Western empire has been run through this matrix of international institutions, claiming to be universal but “the secret gatherings of West Europeans and North Americans known as the Bilderberg meetings…have filled…the need to coordinate the transnational system of the West.” (Sklar 157) Meetings over the last forty years have included the top ruling class post war actors in the history of the West. Top executives from the worlds leading multinational corporations meet with top national political figures at Bilderberg meetings to consider jointly the immediate and long-term problems facing the West. “When Bilderberg participants reach a form of consensus about what is to be done, they have at their disposal powerful transnational and national instruments for bringing about what it is they want to come to pass.” (Sklar 158) Officials from the OECD, NATO, the IMF, World Bank, and GATT (now WTO) regularly attend. Since the members are in a position of such executive power, when the group reaches a consensus the capitalist West is likely to act on it, more or less, as a unit.

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