Guest Post: Recalling The Start Of America’s Fiscal Eclipse

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Ben Tanosborn of,

Recalling The Start Of America’s Fiscal Eclipse

As 2012 was coming to an end, Americans became concerned with what was referred to as the “fiscal cliff”... while the unrecognized problem all along has been what might be more appropriately called the “fiscal eclipse.”

Once again, political and popular aversion to face economic reality won the day, and the illusory fiscal cliff was replaced by other financial peaks that soon must be climbed, each of them offering at the very top not a view of economic prosperity but yet another precipice inviting Americans to jump.

As much as we in the US blame our politicians for the lack of compromise and resolve, combined with a short term approach to the nation’s ills, these politicians are but our reflection in the mirror.  These politicians we elect and reelect, and claim to profoundly dislike in poll after poll, are really us.  And the two supposedly contradictory versions, or visions, of sociopolitical America, the two ruling political parties, are not really that far apart... both operating on a chimeric economic understanding which is far, far removed from reality:  an America with extraordinary natural and human resources – which it does not have; nor the capability of acquiring them in the foreseeable future.

A quarter of a century ago we witnessed the Soviets’ abdication of their half-share in the ideological-military hegemony of much of the world.  Tired and bankrupt, the forces of stalwart socialism were being issued new dress uniforms, fashionable Perestroika (restructuring) and Glasnost (openness), to replace the combat fatigues they had been wearing since the end of World War II; thus allowing Russian-brand Marxist communism to surrender honorably, without battle, to American-brand of capitalism.

For a while (1990-1) many in the US were speaking of the upcoming “peace dividend,” a plethora of resources to be used for the improvement in the wellbeing of the American people… courtesy of a military budget likely to shrink 50 percent or more in constant dollars.  Yet, a score later, military spending (2010) was comparable to that in World War II, which should speak clearly of Americans’ choice between true desire for peace and hawkishness.  But it should come as no surprise, for Americans went along with renaming in 1947 the Department of War, a name which it held since 1789, as the Department of Defense, kidding themselves into believing the euphemism ever since.

It’s my belief, if not yet firm conviction that, coincidentally or not, it was the fall of the Soviets, and America’s adherence to capitalist globalization, that gave the start of the US fiscal eclipse: the dimming or obstruction of financial rationality in America.  In less than a decade, much of America’s middle-class became subservient to global capital and technology, outside of US borders, in the hands of an elite-class of American billionaires flying their own corporate flags... who could care less about their countrymen wrapped in a deceitful, make-believe American flag.  Let the jingoes wear the stars and stripes.

This last minute resolution of the fiscal cliff a week ago became continuing proof that the United States does not have a government of the people, by the people and for the people but by groups of special interests who hold all but a handful of politicians in their pockets.  End result: the annual increase in revenue from the super-rich was doled back to the super-rich via “porkish” extensions of tax breaks to Wall Street and others in the corporate world (nearing $70 billion).

And just like the compromise on the fiscal cliff has turned out to be the proverbial farce, one intended to give the American citizenry the perception of an existing advocacy from politicians representing the Tweedledum and Tweedledee parties, present and upcoming financial problems remained unaddressed.  We are gifting our children a host of financial problems that our inept, self-serving leaders – Democrats and Republicans similarly if not equally at fault – won’t confront or lie to us about... knowing how gullible Americans are to the idea of that mythic American exceptionalism they have been fed since that 19th century Manifest Destiny.

There are myriad problems relative to past and present which need to be addressed; but the financial implications do not stop with past and present, but also the future.  Is there a single political leader sounding off the alarm that the United States, given its geography in the global climatological map, will be more susceptible to natural disasters than much of the planet?  That the disaster costs, added to the diminishing agricultural resources, may escalate five or ten-fold from those we now face?

Yes, we have been experiencing a partial fiscal eclipse, but it’s getting darker and darker at an accelerating pace... until the eclipse is total, and complete financial darkness sets in.  It all started just a quarter of a century ago with Perestroika and Glasnot, and our inability to recognize we were entering a new global financial era where America would no longer rule the seas.  No, it isn’t just fiscal cliffs we’ll be facing in the coming months and years... but the inevitable path we’ve chosen to reach a total fiscal eclipse.

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nmewn's picture

But on the bright side...Benny's still my bitch ;-)

I think I need to buy a gun's picture

i like new england



green bay


Alabama is pasting notre dame and no one cares about this right now

The other half of the country is watching american idol right now


Freddie's picture

TV and Hollywood is for idiots along with college ball (for retards) and pro ball plus anything else on TV.  Keep supporting the elites with your viewership and money including cable and sat TV fees.  Stupid sheep.

GetZeeGold's picture



What was the question again?

yrbmegr's picture

I find it useful sometimes to seem like a sheep so that people underestimate me.

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

did it ever occur to the poster who hates the koch bro's that they might believe and value some of the ideas they support, or do only global warmers have lock on honesty

ball-and-chain's picture

We need to raise interest rates.

It'll be very painful.

But it will also solve a lot of problems.

Where's Paul Volker when you need him?

AGuy's picture

"We need to raise interest rates. It'll be very painful."

Much more that you think!

"But it will also solve a lot of problems."

And create some really big ones. The US federal gov't and many large companies (GE, JPM, BAC, Citi) are completely insolvent. They are Zombie entities surviving their last gasps using cheap money. Even with ZIRP, the Federal gov't paid more tha $400 Billion in interest. Raise Rates will quickly more that half or more of the Tax Revenue the gov't can collect.

ZIRP and QE is a one way trip. Eventully the Federal Gov't will really go over the cliff, but raising rates would bring it much closer to the cliff edge.

The only way out of this is a Default and a economic Reset. However even that won't save western civilization because Oil production is peaked and the era of cheap and abundant energy is over.


lolmao500's picture

A lot of people will need to die before things are set straight.

- History

philipat's picture

Revolting? The peasants have always been revolting!

Sean7k's picture

I want my five minutes back. 

tradewithdave's picture

If you can sell a trillion dollar platinum coin idea, there's nothing mythic about American exceptionalism.  That's exceptional... no doubt about it.  Finding a fully functional missing Goldman laptop in a garbage room or getting an 89 year old judge to dismiss the metals manipulation lawsuit is nothing compared with this Seigniorage of exceptionalism.  The platinum solution even has it's own wikipedia page.  What more do you want?




Insideher Trading's picture

What really shows how America has lost it's place as the magnet of wealth and talent are examples like Depardieu and Arnault. America used to be the haven where individuals like that would seek haven. Not anymore.

America used to to be the mecca of science where endeavors like CERN would have gravitated towards the embrace of America. Not anymore (CERN is located in Switzerland).

America has simply become a place that punishes success, stymies innovation, suffocates business through regulation and tax, and panders to the lowest common denomintor.

If America wonders why it's politics are so repulsive maybe it's time it's people look in the mirror.

Everyman's picture

In the mirror we see....


" reflects the citizens of the country, we in the United States should be embarrassed about the bloated, corrupt, inept, impotent, bankrupt, ineffective dolt we see in the mirror.  We should also get off our collective asses and do something about it.  The options are either suicide or change our lives and vision."


Well Said!

ShrNfr's picture

Having lived through the Cuban crisis, Vietname, and all the rest, I will state that government is an evolving parade of fuckups. On occasion, you can push back the tide, but it will come in again the next time the moon is overhead. A lot of this started with FDR, I hope we can bury it before it buries us. For those who see the Fed as the bogey man, it was earlier with J. P. Morgan. Pick your poison, they will all kill you unless you kill them.

spinone's picture

And before that it was the Dutch East India Company.  Things haven't changed, except ZeroHedge is here now.

Bear's picture


It may well have been earlier, but at least they were called 'Robber Barons', today they are called 'Federal' and look to as heroes. Things have changed after Orwell's 1984 arrived early and truth became a four-letter word.


cnhedge2's picture

fiscal eclipse. a much better word.

fonzannoon's picture

i did not see it but it looks like Alex Jones blew a fuse on that dipshits show.

tony bonn's picture

"....thus allowing Russian-brand Marxist communism to surrender honorably, without battle, to American-brand of capitalism.."

horse crap!! the soviets were brought to power by wall street and removed from power by wall street - and other assorted intectualoid one world order lovers....there was no battle other than a parlor game of the plutocrats to see how "democracy" would fare under stress....

you are the play things of the stupid ignorant fucks....(and i was once one)

IllusionOfChoice's picture

Nothing shines like silver and gold, bitchez!

FoeHammer's picture

Lasers too!


I'll just leave this here

"A laser weapons system that can shoot down two drones at a distance of over a mile has been demonstrated by Rheinmetall Defence."

booboo's picture

If people cannot even recognize that the very government (that they, like a Pavlovian dog, respond "the government should do something") was genesis of the problem, there is little in the pipeline including a individual, political party or God himself can do. 

Movements and monumental shifts in thinking take some time. Say what you want about Glen Beck, I don't subscribe to his current way of thinking since he walked away from his own movement (right after his trip to Israel no less) and hitched his wagon to a "lesser of two evils" but to get a crowd that large to take a trip to D.C. For one fucking day was something we would all dream of if it was a show of solidarity to stomp the Federal Reserve and it's grip on our republic, and childrens collective throats into the mudhole of history.


adr's picture

All Glen Beck needed to do on that day was to say. "We know America needs to be taken back. 100k of you take the Capital, 100k take the White House, 100k take The Supreme Court."

It would have been over that day with no violence and bloodshed, unless the crowd decided to hang any politician they found.

There would have been nothing the elitists could have done to stop the takeover. With half a million like minded people taking over Washington DC, the only thing the Muslim Clown could have done would be to call in the Military, who prbably would have joined Beck's crowd.

TPTB firgured that out very quickly and all conservative gatherings in DC were outlawed. If they still want to have The Million Jigger Jam on the White House lawn, that will of course still be allowed.

That day was the only chance for a peaceful revolution.

SmoothCoolSmoke's picture

I still think there will some sort of yet unforseen technological breakthrough that will change the world forever going forward....and solve it's debt problems.  What?  I do not know.  Some possibilities: cold fusion; oil becomes worthless and energy virtually free. Or perhaps some true anti-gravity ability. Hell maybe they already exist and TPTB have suppressed them. I do not know, but I do think man's creativity will win out.  

toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

No my friend... creative people do shit for the challenge and personal satisfaction, not for money. Any technology that seriously challenges the status quo is bought, stolen, regulated, or outlawed.

USD Long's picture

Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles is the answer...I had the Obama Special...I ordered 17 Trillion Waffles and told the waitress to put it on my kid's tab.

joego1's picture

I keep on voting for anyone but Feinstein and Pelosi but the zombie bitches just keep coming back. Are they really a reflection of us? Gack!

TahoeBilly2012's picture

Yea, rub some battery acid on your face, hire some bodyguards, then look in the mirror.

bulldung's picture

American exceptionalism occurred when Americans kept an exceptionally large amount of the fruits of their own labor.Confiscatory taxation is the immoral end of the exception. Now we return to pre Magna Carta  economic models.

Winston Churchill's picture

Only if we are unlucky ,prolly more like 18th century economic levels.

Which may or may not be a gpood thing.

Notarocketscientist's picture

Most people on this site don't believe Global Warming is man-made.

They do believe that the Koch brothers are part of the group of evil manipulative SOB's that are screwing the country.

But when informed that the Koch's are funding the Climate Denial industry apparently they are unable to connect the dots (i.e. the Koch's want to suck every last drop of oil out of the ground and they absolutely do not want the fact that this will destroy the planet to get in between them and their billions)

But then there are a LOT of very STUPID people in America so what can one expect

Winston Churchill's picture

Maybe some are just older ,and wiser than you.

I recognise both sides as the vested scammers they are.

Its about control stupid.I don't want to be controlled.

awakening's picture

That'll be: a number 4, a number 5 (also applicable to the account holder IMO based on their comment history), a number 7 and an extra large serving of number 1 in something derogatory about America for the last sentence.

To get the writing style of this post, about 1:15 into this vid -

FunkyOldGeezer's picture

"From my own perspective, I am not a non believer in taxation per se. I am specifically a non believer in direct taxation for many reasons, the majority of which I will not impose upon you here. The two basic reasons why I cannot believe in it are because I personally feel it is directly opposed to an individual's freedom and has been used by successive Governments to suppress its populace and force tyranny upon it. Moreover it was unilaterally introduced (i.e. it was made law without prior consultation with the electors, or being part of any manifesto, nor has it been ever since) as a direct method of raising monies for the propagation of war. The introduction of direct taxation heralded a fundamental sea change in the Government's relationship with its electorate. It was the turning point at which the very nature of democracy changed and Government became the tyrannical master of its electorate rather than the electorates' servant. We have been slaves ever since."

Income tax started it!!!!!!!