It is not dollars, treasuries, bonds and debt that is being sold by your government. It is you (5:22):
George Orwell wrote that, “The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink.”
You have probably heard confusing phrases like the trade deficit, the falling dollar, the national debt, unfunded liabilities and so on, which all sound vague and actuarial and vaguely—well, “not me.”
The reality behind these accounting phrases is perfectly monstrous.
When someone—a foreigner, say—loans money to the American government, what are they getting in return?
Well, they are getting promises of interest payments, and eventual repayment of the principal.
Where does your government get this money?
The government is not a business; it does not generate profits in the free market, so where does it get the money to repay its creditors?
Do you see where this is going?
Are you beginning to understand that it is not dollars that are being sold, or bonds, or agency debt, or treasuries, or anything like that.
Where is your government going to get the money to pay off its creditors?
It is not pieces of paper or contracts or computer bits that are being sold.
There is only one thing that the government has to sell.
Governments have only one asset that they can use as collateral.
Your leaders are selling you.
When China lends $800 billion to your government, what they get in return is a guarantee that $10,000 dollars—plus interest—will be taken from your family at gunpoint and shipped overseas.
When a farmer gets a loan from a bank, he uses his livestock as collateral. It is the milk and meat his cows will produce in the future that he will use to pay off his loan.
The bank is buying a share in his cows.
You are the livestock your leaders use as collateral.
The people that you cheer for and throw parades for and drop balloons behind and donate money to are selling you to Chinese rulers, to the Japanese, to the Nigerians, to South American drug lords with accounts in the Caribbean banking centers, to Russia, to Korea, to Egypt, to Colombia, to Chile, to the Philippines, to Malaysia—and anyone else who is willing to give them a few dollars in return for the blood, sweat and toil of your future.
The flag that you praise and the anthems that you sing and the rulers that you weep and kneel before have as much loyalty to you as a plantation owner had to his slaves.
And sadly, plantation slaves had more pride than we do.
Plantation slaves did not generally praise their masters for selling them off, for auctioning off the lives, hopes, dreams and futures of their own little children.
We can understand that cattle may lick the hand of the farmer who lowers an axe to its neck, because cattle are dumb beast that cannot comprehend their real relationship with the farmer, and his imminent plans for them.
What is our excuse?
When we chant “U.S.A.” “U.S.A.” “U.S.A.”; when we cheer and bow and beg and scrape and sing and weep with joy that some new farmer now presides over the wholesale dismantling and sale of our family’s future, when we love with obsessive emptiness the leaders who laugh while they auction us off to every tin pot dictator and stockbroker the world over, what is our excuse?
Has our pride been so broken that we lunge with pathetic joy at every new silver tongued demagogue who pretends to care for us, even a tiny little bit?
In the future, our children will ask why we knelt and cheered as they were sold on the auctioneer’s block.
This video—and my life’s work—is my answer to my child.
Stefan Molyneux runs Freedomain Radio, the largest and most popular philosophy show on the web. His books, podcasts, and videos are available free on the web. Mr. Molyneux accepts donations with the utmost gratitude.