Monday, February 8, 2016

The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man

Are you ready to read the truth?

"Indeed, promoting capitalism often results in a system that resembles medieval  feudal societies" - John Perkins

I have a banking background so I have always been a financial market and economics geek. As an avid reader, I consistently seek out action packed spy novels peppered with international intrigue and secrets that the characters die for. Little did I think that I would find a non-fiction real life book that quickly satisfied my reading appetite. Once I began reading The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins I couldn’t put it down! Not only does this book reveal bribes, murder, sex, politics, and untold violence, it brings us on a historic journey with real characters and events that we all remember.
Perkin’s book is an expanded edition of his original classic. He updated this book with political and economic events through 2015. You will quickly be chilled by his updates of recent events and the details behind recent banking scandals, economic collapses, and wars. Even if you read his first book you really need to pick up this addition to catch up on the continued antics and impact of Economic Hit Men.
Perkin’s book recants his own journey going back several decades. He tells a tale of a man who does things in the name of capitalism only to find his conscience catches up to him and he decides that he must instead have a positive impact in the world. John Perkins was an EHM – Economic Hit Man who is a person that works for no government but for private industry. The focus of the work is to convince foreign countries to accept large loans for infrastructure such as dams, electric plants, and systems. Sounds great right? Not so fast. These loans are made with inflated ROI’s knowing that the country cannot afford to pay the loan back. The country defaults on the loans after bringing in US contractors to manage the work and the US, World Bank, and International Monetary Fund win. The US uses its pull to ask for favors and control the government and economy. It’s a modern method of capitalist control and way for our CIA to overthrow leaders and allows our presidents to control debt bridled countries. No one wins but the US.
John compares the work of an EHM to a cancer that spreads more quickly with a wider reach than anyone can imagine. It’s a dark method utilized to become dominant in business while controlling others at the upper levels. History repeats itself and we have all lived through times where we are thrust into opening our eyes and seeing that whoever controls the economy controls everything. Remember that little banking crisis in 2008-2009? Just who do you think was behind the fall of some of our own powerful institutions?
Sadly for decades Americans have been proponents of spreading capitalism and democracy because we believe it is the best model. We have slyly crept into countries all over the world to exert our control in the name of democracy. Remember the Shah of Iran? An American puppet. Ever hear that we once supported Bin Laden? All in the name of democracy. Have no doubt that there were numerous EHMs at work behind the scenes bringing about forced change. John’s story is a journey through history of the US gobbling up smaller countries for our own good and self serving purpose. 
John Perkins excelled at what he did. He quickly rose to the top of his organization MAIN but he was well known as a senior economist in several circles as well. Initially, he enjoyed his power and his innate ability to move around different countries and industries with ease and comfort. He didn’t view his career as one who bribed people for the benefit of his country. He actually half convinced himself that he was making a difference. His work slowly deepened in the spy world. He introduces us to “Jackals” who are those that overthrow leaders or even kill heads of state to serve the cause. It is at this point in the book where I became uneasy. I had to face what I had always personally denied – that our government is willing to go to great lengths to control and spread their own views throughout the world. Although I love spy novels I never wanted to accept that our own leaders play games and justify immoral actions. 
The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man pulls no punches. It truly reads like an unfolding novel spanning over 80 years of real events and history. As I turned the pages I relived numerous events that I saw on TV as a child or read about throughout the years. The recounting of details of events such as the overthrow of the Shah of Iran gives the book life and credibility. As I read this book I didn’t want to believe the words that popped out at me, yet I knew they were true. Ever since the US forged into Iraq so many years ago I had doubts and suspicions about our motives. I remain jaded today about our continued “need” to butt into foreign countries. Why do we feel that we need to be the ones to “defend” the world with our military? Better yet, are we really defending them? Perkin’s book quickly answers some of these complicated questions.
John Perkins was silently discontent as his career climbed. He began looking around with new eyes at what was happening and that he was a part of the cancer. After much soul searching he decided to end his EHM career and find out what he really wanted from life. He founded and worked with several non-profits that fought against the very injustices that he had been a part of. He wanted to make a difference and help those with tiny voices to be heard. John made the difficult decision to finish the truths that he began writing years ago to expose our government, EHM, and Jackals, even if it meant harm could come to him. He gave us all an eye into what really happens under our noses in the name of democracy and capitalism. He gave us the truth.
John Perkins doesn’t stop with his tale of truths. He offers us all a way to have an impact on our world and a way to fight back against the system. He has suggestions for readers by offering 11 things that we can all do such as pick a cause to support, fight for reforms, live consciously, and make heroes out of those building a better world. He offers our retired leaders ideas that they can do as well as suggestions for students, corporations, and entrepreneurs. It takes a village folks.
I highly encourage you to read The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. As a citizen of the United States you need to learn and understand what our country does in the name of democracy and capitalism. The time to turn our heads from reality is past. Personally, I was shocked how quickly the pieces of historic events fell into place for me and I saw what I never wanted to see. I want to believe that America cares about other countries and people and that we act in their best interests. Sadly, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Now more than ever I see that I need to become more involved in speaking out or taking action with others against injustices. I can make a difference and by working with other like minded people, I can!