Journalist James R. Norman argued that the U.S. and its allies use the price of oil as an economic weapon. The oil economic war against the Soviet Union worked so well in the 1980s, that this strategy is now being employed against "our other big geopolitical enemy," China, which currently imports more oil than the US, and is much less able to pay for it, he outlined. The thinking in Washington is, it's going to slow things down for China, and could put a crack in their political system, he continued. Other aspects of the economic war the US is waging with China are on the front page of the paper almost every day-- with fights over trade actions, interest rates, and currency levels, he noted.
The whole Chinese business model is based on predatory trade practices, and that's why the world is ganging up on them, Norman said, adding that China is facing large amounts of unemployment and social unrest, and their banks are sitting on huge assets of non-performing loans. Norman estimated that the actual cost of oil is between $10- $20 a barrel, but when US citizens shell out $4 a gallon at the pump, it's collateral damage or the price we pay to engage in an economic rather than physical war with China.
Companies like Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, and Morgan Stanley are the economic warfare equivalent of a carrier battle group, because they are able to project power-- that's why financial restrictions were lessened for them, he explained. Morgan also touched on geopolitical/economic situations in such places as Russia, Europe, Iran, Venezuela, and Syria.
The first hour of the show featured Open Lines.
Bumper music from Wednesday March 14, 2012