This transcript appears in the July 10, 2020 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
January 18, 1997
Crucial Strategic Importance of Creating
The Right Cultural Paradigm Shift Now
The following is an edited transcript of a briefing, given by Lyndon LaRouche to his Intelligence Staff on Jan. 18, 1997. It is published here for the first time.
We have to really get rid of the ideas of “business cycles,” and people who try to explain things in terms of business cycles and how they’re manipulated. It doesn’t work that way, but that’s what they teach, and we’ve got to get rid of that.
Our job is this. We must win decisive elements of the U.S. government around to our emergency policy perspective, and that, with sufficient comprehension of the policy, to implement it efficiently. Not simply to follow our prescription, but to implement it, in their own minds, in their own way, efficiently, understanding what is valid and what is not.
Either we do that, as in the case of trying to stop this holocaust in Sudan, which has been launched by the British; either we get the United States government to sabotage the British war against Sudan and against Africa in general, or Africa’s gone. Either we get the United States to change its parameters of policymaking in the way we indicated, that is, a cultural paradigm shift in policymaking, away from what the trend has been for the past thirty years, or else the entire planet, before the end of the century, will have been plunged into a global new dark age, far worse than that which seized Europe during the Fourteenth Century.
Therefore, our priorities are not what some people think they would like to cover, or what they think are issues they would like to touch. Everything has to be coordinated, as I’ve said before, in the way that Lazare Carnot fought against Robespierre on French military policy in the relevant period. Everything must be subordinated to a highly centralized intelligence and editorial program, which is focused on the crucial issues which will shape the history of mankind in this period. And, everything else will take a back seat. Because there are certain things which we must absolutely cover, and cover in a certain manner, from a certain standpoint. Otherwise, we are being impotent.
Without us, without our effective intervention, and particularly on the policies of the United States government; without our effective intervention here, you can write off civilization for 50 years or more to come. You can write off, also, about 80 percent of the world’s population, and you will have a halving or greater of the life expectancy of people in most parts of this planet.
So, we have to be deadly serious, as in fighting a war for the mortal existence of humanity. Now, humanity will survive this crisis if the worst happens—at least, I believe so. We’ve seen comparable things, if not as spectacular, in former history and prehistory. Most cultures—and this is important to emphasize—most cultures of this planet collapsed into relative dark ages, unless they were simply taken over, because those cultures had become, had reached a point of in extremis and a quality of moral unfitness to survive.
For example, the Aztec culture. Why’d it go? Because of Cortés? No. It went, because it was no longer morally fit to exist. And, the first positive factor which had come along as a catalyst to bring about the collapse of the Aztec Montezuma rule, and free the Indians of Mexico from this terrible oppressor, this evil oppressor, the Aztecs, the Aztec culture, was going to succeed. And, that’s the situation with the various Mesopotamian empires, from the ancient Chaldean empires through Babylon on, through Rome, and so forth. All of these empires collapsed, because they had either lacked or had lost the moral fitness to survive.
And so, in the course of events, they underwent great depopulations, as happened beginning about the Fourth Century A.D. in Rome and west, and, later, of course, in the continued disintegration of the Byzantine Empire, its gradual contraction and destruction. And the people went through great suffering, in new dark ages, as they’re called, like that of the Fourteenth Century in Europe.
And for humanity, unless we succeed in doing our job, in our purpose, the result will be there will be no civilization on this planet for the next 50 years. And most of you will have no descendants, or your relatives will have no descendants. Because in a collapse of the world population by about 80 percent, which is what is due if we don’t succeed, over a period of two generations, through famine and disease and so forth, those who do survive, the 20 percent, will be mostly Yahoos, or worse. And, entire branches of the human family will disappear; and descendants of whole groups of people you know, will be non-existent. Your children will have no future, if they’re young children. They won’t exist. They’ll die soon, before they reach full adulthood.
That is the issue. You’ve got to keep that clearly in mind. We are the only agency on this planet which has the capability of turning it around. That doesn’t mean that we are guaranteed the ability to turn it around. We’re the only one that has the quality needed to do the job, if we are permitted to be successful.
We have, in a sense, a line. Not a line like a political line in some hack organization. We have a cognitive conception of what the world is, and where it’s going. And, that’s our line, that’s what we do. Anything else which interferes with that, or which is a lower priority, is pushed to one side.
1. The Issue of War vs. the British Empire
For example, the British Empire, otherwise known as the Commonwealth, has launched aggressive war on Sudan, as part of its general operation for destroying Africa, sub-Saharan Africa. It is the same British Empire, the same Commonwealth, which is responsible for the genocide in eastern Zaire; and so forth and so on.
Therefore, there is a river of blood, a river of war, between us and the British monarchy. That’s the situation. And we have no margin for toleration of the British monarchy. It is now an enemy in war, and will be so treated. The British monarchy is the mortal enemy of humanity, and must be stopped.
This war, this aggression against Sudan, which the British openly brag about orchestrating, must be stopped. And, those in the United States who are sympathetic to the aggression against Sudan, will be treated by us as if they were traitors to the United States. We take off the gloves. As far as we’re concerned, we go back, not to the UN statutes, but to the principles established at the Nuremberg war crimes trials. The British are guilty of crimes against humanity, aggressive war and genocide, which their agents are conducting under their direction. That’s the game.
Those are the issues of war, and that’s the way we’re going to have to treat it.
Now, in the recent presentation which I made in Washington last Saturday, a week ago, I included, together with others, a series of maps. I presume that the priority is to pre-empt, except for the machine tool feature, is to preempt the next issue of EIR, with my full address on the Africa question; all of it. Don’t leave out the hard lumps to the African-Americans, either. And, do that with the coverage about the declaration of war against Britain, which will be a priority, to feature that in this next issue.
This should be done under the heading “The Genocide Against Zaire,” and so forth, these kinds of elements, and to lay out a declaration of war, in fact, against the British Empire, with some quotes from the British press, in which they brag about this, and British officials who brag about what they’re up to.
We’re fighting as war, and our priorities are not by an orderly process, where we say, “Oh, we’re going to have to do it this way this week, because we already decided—” No. You scrap everything, and you move the troops around to hit the enemy on the flank. You don’t say “Well, we’re going to attack him on the front, because we already made up our mind.” No; we shift when we have to. We don’t do it irresponsibly, we don’t do it chaotically. But, you know, war has broken out. Pearl Harbor has been bombed. And, now is the time to get up and react accordingly.
2. Why the Machine Tool Sector
Is a Technology Driver
Now, on the machine tool series, there are three aspects I’ll cover. First, the machine tool series as such; then, the question of how this bears on the theory of business cycles; and, thirdly, how this deals with the general approach of analysis situs in politics and the nature of human history.
These are things, as I say, and the machine tool concept is what has to be understood.
For example, Gail and others are working on collecting the evidence, which shows that the Southeast Asian Tigers were never Tigers. They were pussycats with delusions of grandeur, or alley cats with delusions of grandeur. There is virtually no machine tool capability in Malaysia, none in Thailand. Of course, Laos, Cambodia or Kampuchea, and Vietnam, are essentially ruined, though probably Vietnam has some elements of machine tool capability.
India is the only nation in the region which today has significant machine tool capability, that is, in South Asia and Southeast Asia. India, relative to its industrial sector, is probably more advanced in scale than China on this count. China is obviously number two after India in this respect. South Korea was significant, though it’s somewhat special.
And Japan, of course, has had very significant machine tool capability, as I reported after looking at what was going on at the laser engineering laboratory in Osaka, after visiting it. I saw the performance of this stuff, the contractors who did the work for the laser engineering laboratory, which is actually based on the model we had for the cannonball target in Fusion magazine. They built their laboratory on that basis. The design was better than anything we could have gotten in the United States, in terms of performance time, cost estimates, quality, everything. It was tremendous.
But when you get outside of Japan—and to some degree South Korea, India, and China—there is virtually no machine tool capability in Pacific/Indian Ocean Asia. The Southeast Tigers are alley cats with pink ribbons on their throats: delusions of grandeur.
For example, the Philippines used to have a machine tool capability, particularly associated with the Subic Bay Naval Base. But, after the coup against Marcos, all of that capability was ripped up and destroyed. As a matter of fact, some of the heavy machinery was actually brought to the United States, and so forth; just destroyed. So, the Philippines is now dead in the water. It’s a dead fish economy. It’s a Bermuda Triangle economy, where these big gas deposits burping out of the ocean bed kill the fish, and sometimes even set up bubbles big enough to sink ships, or small ships at least, which is why it’s got the name of the “Devil’s Triangle,” because of this gas bubble problem, in the Sargasso Sea area. But, it’s dead.
The nearest approximation of a machine tool development, is in Indonesia. We’ve looked at this fairly closely. There’s a fellow Habibie, who was a student, together with Erbakan, at Aachen University, over at the aeronautical engineering section. He went back to Indonesia as an engineer, and built up a special kind of aerospace industry, from the top down.
The first thing they did, is they bought an airplane, actually manufactured in Spain. And, they painted it. That was the first step in technology transfer. And, they finally worked their way up to producing some replacement parts. But, they have no machine tool design capability of any significance, in the entire country of Indonesia.
So, all of Southeast Asia, the Southeast Asian Tigers, is a fraud. Of course, Singapore and Hongkong are special cases. They’re not really machine tool sectors, though Hongkong has some special capabilities. It’s a junk pile.
What you’re looking at, to understand the so-called outsourcing industries, industrialization in Southeast Asia, as in the maquiladoras in northern Mexico, is you’re looking at colonialism revisited.
In the old colonial period, the Dutch, and the British, and the French, and Portuguese and so forth, would develop plantation economies, and mining economies. They would find a mineral resource they wanted to loot, or they would find some crop they wished to produce on a plantation basis, as in the rubber in Vietnam or Indochina, and so forth. And then, there’d be an urban center, such as Old Saigon, and so forth, or, as in other places, these metropolitan centers, which had a small amount of infrastructure, but largely administration. And, to the degree you had a railroad, or a road, it generally went to a plantation or a mine, and then to the coast or something. And, the country was ruined, actually lowered in its per capita viability, by these plantations’ use of cheap labor.
Now, what’s happening in the industrial age of the late Twentieth Century, is, in place of plantations, we’re now outsourcing industries, from Europe and the United States. And, it’s the same game played with industries, that was played with plantations in the Nineteenth Century. In the process now, you will notice that these are collapsing.
If you look at the situation, you say, “Wait a minute. In Africa, and generally today in South and Central America, which have been largely destroyed, as in South Asia, Southeast Asia, there is no machine tool capability. In China and India, there is a somewhat limited capability.”
Now, you’re coming back to look at the Productive Triangle proposal, by me, which Helga and others worked up into some detail. The center of the machine tool design capability of this planet, was this Productive Triangle: Paris to Vienna, to Berlin, back to Paris by way of Lille. Sort of a circular triangle, a spherical triangle.
In order to get profit and growth on this planet, you must have advances in technology. There is no way in which, from an accounting standpoint, you can generate profit in an industry which is technologically stagnating, or in an economy whose industries and agriculture are of a traditional sort, or of a fixed sort, such as an industrial economy sector based on providing outsourcing on fixed technology, using cheap labor. There is no net economic growth provided to a population, to a nation, by that method.
The only way you get growth, is through the transmission of discoveries of physical principle, principally, by way of education of the labor force to a high standard, and by way of science through the machine tool design sector, into improving, qualitatively, products and productive processes. So it is the matching of improved product designs, based on new physical principles, and of productive processes, also reflecting new principles, with a labor force which is capable of assimilating those technologies, which is the only basis for growth in agriculture and industry per capita and per square kilometer. Otherwise, no growth.
If you take that into consideration, you see, first of all, throughout this planet, there is no area of potential growth of any significance, outside of Europe, North America and Japan. None. No area of significant contribution to global growth, except those areas.
Why? Because these other areas lack machine tool design capability; because they lack adequate forms and quantities of education of the labor force; because they lack the conditions of life necessary to produce an educated labor force. Because they have cultural traditions which have not been reformed, which are an impediment to this kind of education, and this kind of employment, and this kind of behavior.
Therefore, in order to bring about growth in so-called developing regions of the planet, it is necessary to rebuild, very rapidly, the areas where we have a machine tool design capability, that is, to mobilize that in the same way you’d mobilize reserve forces to fight a war. Bring the reserves, the scientific reserves, the machine tool design reserves out of retirement. Gather them around what facilities we have to do this, and generate successive waves of machine tool design technology along transportation routes, like these corridors of development, into the developing areas, for the purpose of immediately stimulating growth in those areas, and, secondly, of stimulating the growth of a machine tool, local machine tool design capability. That’s the secret of a recovery.
3. Why Business Cycles Are a Form of Mental Pathology
Now, go back, then, to the question of business cycles. All right. Now, the first modern industrialization effort, was that organized by Colbert, that is, on the basis of political economy, by Colbert in France.
The next case of that, was in England, where it was done by Benjamin Franklin, the visiting American, who mobilized some forces to create industrial development in the Midlands of England, and, in the process, worked together with [Joseph] Priestley and with their protégé, James Watt, who they took to Paris to develop a steam engine, based on the principles of steam engine design, which had been earlier developed by Leibniz, introduced to Europe by Leibniz.
The British then pretty much shut that down, but they revived it later on. When you look at the British pattern, you find that the British never promoted agricultural and industrial progress in an industrial manner, except in anticipation of general wars, or major wars, we might call it, or in the conduct of those wars. At all other times, the British policy was like that of the Code of Diocletian of the Byzantine Empire: Do not allow technological progress.
Why? Because technological progress elevates the minds of the population; and, that’s the one thing the oligarchy doesn’t want. It wishes to keep people relatively stupid, as Yahoos, as Swift defines it in the visit to the Land of the Houyhnhnms, where the horse’s asses do not want their servants, the Yahoos, to get too smart.
Swift does it very cleverly, in writing about poor Lemuel Gulliver, who’s about to get castrated, because they were afraid he might breed, because he was too smart. It’s pretty much like what Harvard University Black Studies recommends for African-Americans: Keep them as Yahoos, don’t let them get cognitive education. Tell them it’s bad for their genes, or something. And, that’s what those black-faced comedians who represent the Harvard University Black Studies program, and its education department, represent, a bunch of black-skinned anti-black racists. They’re not even black, but that’s another matter.
So, business cycles have not really existed on this planet, in the form that all the textbooks say. There is no “pulsation of business cycles.” Marx is wrong on this, as I pointed out; and remember the lecture series I gave, when I said he left out a consideration of technological progress. Because business cycles are, in general, the result of a policy, which is a policy of suppressing technological progress.
What happens, is you get a pulsation of technological progress, which is done for strategic reasons. That leads to the proliferation of certain industries, under military or related conditions. Then, peace breaks out, and, as we saw in 1945-46, and 1953-55, and then after 1964, especially after ’66, we find that suddenly, the government deliberately in the name of free trade or economy or something, shuts down the kind of technological expansion, capital-intensive, energy-intensive development, which had been used under these critical strategic conditions.
In that case, what sets in, when you don’t have high rates of technological progress, you have entropy. Now, the entropy means that, relative to the total flows, that you are engaged in attrition, or technological attrition, against assets and raw materials, and so forth. Therefore, you have a long wave resulting in looting of the per capita per square kilometer base of the economy. But, you are continuing to expand the economy, in terms of nominal values of assets, through lowering the rate of intensity of capital investment. This leads to a financial boom, which is then overtaken by the cumulative entropic effects of not maintaining capital-intensive, energy-intensive, technology-intensive investment in agriculture, industry, and infrastructure. That’s how it works.
So, business cycles are actually political-strategic cycles which are imposed upon the nation-state, wherever the nation-state, or the system of nation-states, is dominated by a financier-oligarchy of the Venetian type. There is no other reason for business cycles but that: political.
Thus, the point is, how do you avoid business cycles? There’s only one way, and that is, as we see in the case of mobilizations for war, and the improvement in the economy, despite the massive military waste involved in war expenditures, that the military economy actually has been the greatest driver for economic growth in the past 400 years of human history, of European technology.
Thus, they used to say, you need a war—I didn’t say it, but others did—you need a war, in order to get out of a depression or a recession. Military expenditure in the Twentieth-Century United States, for example, military expenditure was always the key to recovery, except in the related case of aerospace expenditure, which is half-military, half non-military.
Therefore, these kinds of projects, large infrastructure projects, large military industry projects, and related kinds of projects, such as space, have always been the method by which the U.S. economy recovered from a depression. This has been coupled with protectionist measures, also of a national economic security nature, which made this possible. It’s been done by forced full-employment programs, directed by governments.
So the business cycle is actually a mental cycle, you might call it. The business cycle is actually a mental pathology, it’s a cycle of psychosis, or a neurotic cycle, or a cycle of wild-eyed maniacs, eh? Not of any lawful process in the economy, nor of a purely administrative intervention by finance agencies in the economy.
That has to be understood, because we are now coming into what people call a business cycle. And, as [Robert] Rubin said, one of the problems here, is that in the present,— he calls it parsing. We don’t parse the distinction between current expense and capital investment in the national budget. And that’s one of the big fallacies of the present budget. We used to have, for example, in city governments, or the State of New York, for example, or New York City, would have a capital budget which would be handled by the Board of Estimate. Then you’d have an operating budget.
So, in the old days in New York City, when there was still some element of administrative sanity in the place, you had the distinction between an operating budget, and a capital budget. Now, granted, they used to swindle the capital budget a bit, to cover operating budget expenses. That became worse in the late ’60s and early 1970s. But, nonetheless, the distinction was there.
On the Federal level, we are way behind the thinking level of New York City earlier. We used to have the defense budget. The defense budget was the greatest cover for capital expansion of the U.S. economy, and for growth. Therefore, some people today say, “Well, let’s have a war, so we can get this economy moving again.” We’ve had some of those things recently.
4. Organizing People to Understand the Nature of the Crisis
All right. So therefore, in order to get people to understand the crisis, we have to explain this. Now, I’ve already addressed that repeatedly in a number of places, in indicating that to understand the postwar period— My experience: I came back from war. We’d come out of a depression, through a military mobilization. We’d built up the U.S. economy to a high level.
It wasn’t just military expenditure. We had the potential to keep that going. But, with the death of Roosevelt, and silly Truman in there, under the thumb of Churchill, and so forth, they deliberately sank the U.S. economy; deliberately plunged it into a depression, in order to drop the level of growth.
And, the argument was made to the idiots on the Republican side, “Look, we have to cut off the tax rates. We have to distribute more of these earnings by cutting out the tax rates, or so forth. We have to distribute more income.” And, the idea of distributing a greater share of the total revenue to the stockholders, or the bondholders, became the pretext to get the cheaply bought Republicans to tear down the program and to throw the United States into a deep recession, from 1946 until late in 1948.
And then we had the mobilization, in late ’48, 1949, for the Korean War, or that period, which was also partly stimulated by this so-called preventive nuclear war thing, which some of our Air Force and Rand Corp. freaks were heavily into at that time.
But then, 1953-54, they sank the economy again. And then Eisenhower, under Arthur Burns’ influence, came in with this crazy credit policy, and, by the beginning of 1957, they sank the economy again; 1956: they shut down the space program, etc., etc. Then we continued in a deep recession, very deep, from February approximately of 1957, into 1961 under Kennedy, when Kennedy revived the economy, with the space program expansion.
Then, in the middle of the 1960s, Johnson, under pressure, particularly ’66-67, effectively sank the U.S. economy again. Then, of course, again, the other operation, in 1971-72. Then, of course, the big one in 1979-80, the Volcker measures, kept sinking the economy, sinking the economy. And, the reason for doing so, was the argument that a military economy was no longer necessary, or not as necessary, and therefore we ought to go back to free trade, this and that and so forth, and that just deliberately sank the economy.
But, the issue was not the manipulation in the banking community as such. It was not financial manipulations from London. The way this was done, was by manipulating the priorities in economic policy, and the financial policy result was the result of that.
The same thing happened after World War I. We had a deep depression, 1921-22, as a result of collapsing the economy, so-called “collapsing the war industry.” That was only the beginning. By 1924-25, various sectors of the economy were already collapsing, especially in agriculture; ’24-25: the collapse in agriculture. By 1927, the Depression was really on, except you had a spending spree based on speculation in certain subsidized areas. So that, effectively, there was a process of disintegration from the end of World War I, through 1932-33, in which the financial crisis, the global financial crisis, was simply a reflection of the deliberate postwar collapse of the economy, and the effect of that collapse of the economy on financial and monetary relations.
So, these are the kinds of things which have to be understood today, if we’re going to get our mission performed; that is, to cause government institutions and other relevant persons, leaders, to understand what the whole problem is we’re dealing with today.
5. On Analysis Situs
This brings us to analysis situs.
As I’ve emphasized—and this is tough for some of you guys to accept. I mean, you hear it, you talk about it, but you don’t really accept it, when push comes to shove, in terms of your personal reactions to situations around you.
This is an example of that, that especially since 1966, the United States abandoned a commitment to investment in scientific and technological progress and engaged in a cultural brainwashing of the baby boomer population as a whole (including most of you—you may be less brainwashed than most people around you, but you were brainwashed, and you still are largely brainwashed, except when you’re conscious of it, and fight it), and into shifting into a consumer-oriented society, as opposed to a production-oriented society.
Under these conditions, the efforts to induce a radical-positivist sort of pseudo-education meant that everything that had been done bad in terms of education since Paolo Sarpi, was accelerated to its limit. As a result, there is no subject taught in any university today, or, therefore, secondary school and so forth, which is not axiomatically incompetent. This includes all social studies, history, economics, of course, and, also, physical science, that physical science is under the thumb of the Euler-Lagrange tradition in mathematics, which means that physical science is intrinsically incompetent.
The worst examples of this, of course, are the really crude virtual reality models, mathematical models, which come out of places like the [F. Sherwood] Roland business, the ozone hole, or global warming, or things like that. What is presented in the name of statistics or mathematics as science, is largely hokum today. Because virtually every science education program, in every university today, or physical science, mathematical-related, is essentially hokum. Therefore, if you have a mathematical education and you believe you’ve been well educated, and have degrees in this and that, and so forth, that means your mind has been largely destroyed.
If you mastered social studies, yes; if you specialized in English prose style or modern languages, your brain was fried, or large parts of it.
So, the problem we have today, is that because of the influence of Sarpi, and Sarpi’s notion of the individual human nature and of the individual human nature’s relationship to the universe around us, which is sort of an Ockhamite version of Aristotle, that every educational institution, leading educational institution in the world today, teaches incompetence in every professional field.
This incompetence in these fields, reflects a deep incompetence permeating the thinking of the population as a whole. Therefore, unless you take into account the fact that the population, including yourselves, maybe less so, but the population as a whole is clinically insane by this standard, and has to be approached by the same way you try to bring sanity to a madman in an institution, you’re not going to succeed.
And therefore, we have to understand exactly what it is, what this kind of education leaves out, which is why I’m so hard on you sometimes. Because you must give up these crazy habits, which you believe are your professional competencies. And because somebody else shares your insanity, you think it’s not insanity.
You know, it’s like gossip. You share a mythology, and therefore, since you all agree on it, you think it’s truth. But it’s actually some idiocy you made up, like these guys who are talking on the phones and saying “Look, this present program in sales is not going to work, it just won’t work.” And, that became a self-proving hypothesis. And, when some people realized that the alternative didn’t work, then they came to their senses. But, it was a stubborn determination to insist that this program couldn’t work—which was done, largely, not through open discussion, but through the gossip networks. And, we’d say, “Why don’t you give up your delusions, and then maybe we’ll all be better off.”
So, in any case, it’s very important that we recognize that problem, and recognize it in ourselves, because, by recognizing it in ourselves, we can then begin to have some apprehension of what we have to deal with, in dealing with others.
You’ll find that what Bruce has undertaken, and others will be undertaking in the same way, in terms of classes, will be extremely beneficial in this respect. Because the first thing you have to do, before trying to use your mind, is to get it started up. Before you want the vehicle to move, turn the engine on, you know? And, some of our people have been trying to navigate without turning their engines on; and, they don’t get very far, as a result. For mysterious reasons, of course.
So therefore, the important thing we have to do, is get our members themselves stimulated, so they’re more accustomed to using their rusty, and ungreased, and often neglected, cognitive powers which they have. And, if they keep those things moving, turning over every day, then the engine won’t rust, and they’ll be able to use it when they have to.
So therefore, we have to appreciate that clinically. So, in addition to responding to the crises which break out, which reflect, in a sense, the end of this civilization, in its present form in any case, we have to address those matters which are of most crucial importance, not only to the decision-making by people in governmental and related positions, but, also, in educating a minority, a leadership minority in the population, to take leadership over the population as a whole, from within the pores of the population itself, which is what we’re doing with our reactivation, publications, and so forth program.
Okay, that’s what I have to say today.