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The Sun Sets On Richard N. Haass's CFR Career
NYTimes’ new feature profiles Richard N. Haass, the longest serving president of the Council on Foreign Relations, focusing on his decision to step down from the institution itself regarded as the oldest of America’s policy thinktanks. The article delves into Haass’s slow disillusionment with the direction the country’s taking amid the changing world.
As mentioned, the CFR is arguably the oldest of American proto-globalist institutions. It partly had its start in the days of WW1 as the brainchild of Woodrow Wilson called ‘The Inquiry’, which was tasked with coming up with ways of favorably redrawing the map of post-WW1 Europe and the world. The first members were open “internationalists”—the precursor to globalism—and worked under the stated banner of ‘engineering government policy’.
The CFR took off when large organizations like the Ford and Carnegie Corporations, as well as the Rockefeller Foundation, began lavishing it with large yearly sums of money. David Rockefeller himself ultimately became the Council’s director, and the group was likewise formative in the early history of the CIA.
Richard Haass ruled the roost during the period of the PNAC ideal’s peak efflorescence. It was supposed to be the golden era of American stewardship over the globe after the downfall of its arch nemesis of the USSR—the ‘End of History’ proclaimed by fellow PNAC and CFR faithful, Francis Fukuyama.
But like Fukuyama, it seems Richard Haass’s blinkered worldview was soured by the intervening years, and he’s begun to see the light. I had once written before about the failures of that brief period of PNAC euphoria, and how even Fukuyama ultimately distanced himself from the neocons’ wanton Middle East barbarism of the 2000s:
Now, one of the staunchest voices of the Anglo-crusade to rule the world has become disillusioned, and believes it’s the U.S. which has ironically become ‘the greatest threat to global security’:
The article opens by establishing that what has kept Richard Haass “up at night” for the last two decades has been the usual cartoon-carousel of fictive ‘threats’: North Korea, Russia, Iran, China, and even climate change. But that’s all in the past; now, Haass believes the main threat is “us”.
That was never a thought this global strategist would have entertained until recently. But in his mind, the unraveling of the American political system means that for the first time in his life the internal threat has surpassed the external threat. Instead of being the most reliable anchor in a volatile world, Mr. Haass said, the United States has become the most profound source of instability and an uncertain exemplar of democracy.
He goes on to lament that America’s domestic political developments are no longer cause for emulation by the rest of the world. The sheer unpredictability and “unreliability” now endemic to American political culture is what Haass calls ‘poisonous’, and a big turn off for longtime allies.
The problem is that Haass suffers from the typical lack of self-awareness inherent to his bottom-feeding class of un-elected bureaucratic leeches, people lacking the accountability that might otherwise weigh down their cynical actions. Such figures are free to do as they want, spend years in the thinktank sandbox pushing poisonous policy without the built-in safety-catch of political pushback from a voting constituency.
Now, alarmed by what’s become of the country his own outfit contributed to destabilizing, Haass declares that the next phase of his life will be devoted to spreading awareness of ‘civic virtues’. He intends to become a sort of itinerant prophet, re-galvanizing the disenfranchised, disinherited, and disaffected masses that he belatedly sees as the keys to America’s stricken future.
It’s a sort of pilgrimage of the penitent, one supposes. Perhaps the guilt has eaten away at what remains of his conscience. After all, recall that this is the man who campaigned for the dissolution of national sovereignties, in the name of ‘protecting [nations’] own interests’—whatever that means. In 2006 he essentially argued to abolish the Westphalian system altogether:
State sovereignty must be altered in globalized era
For 350 years, sovereignty -- the notion that states are the central actors on the world stage and that governments are essentially free to do what they want within their own territory but not within the territory of other states -- has provided the organizing principle of international relations. The time has come to rethink this notion.
The world's 190-plus states now co-exist with a larger number of powerful non-sovereign and at least partly (and often largely) independent actors, ranging from corporations to non-governmental organizations (NGOs), from terrorist groups to drug cartels, from regional and global institutions to banks and private equity funds. The sovereign state is influenced by them (for better and for worse) as much as it is able to influence them. The near monopoly of power once enjoyed by sovereign entities is being eroded.
As a result, new mechanisms are needed for regional and global governance that include actors other than states. This is not to argue that Microsoft, Amnesty International, or Goldman Sachs be given seats in the UN General Assembly, but it does mean including representatives of such organizations in regional and global deliberations when they have the capacity to affect whether and how regional and global challenges are met.
Yes, in the third paragraph above, he actually argues for Goldman Sachs and other corporations to be given a seat at the table of global governance. This is the type of globalist parasite represented in the ranks of the CFR. They want bodies like the CFR itself—where oligarchs sit should to shoulder with world leaders—to become the de rigeur model for global governance. His argument is that it’s merely pragmatic—after all, if all-powerful global organs like BlackRock wield such vast influence in effecting ‘change’ (for better or worse), then why not give them a say, so that their power can be recruited for beneficial action?
It all sounds so idealistically reasonable on the surface. But alas, no—humanity does not want or need to have unelected all-powerful banking cabal titans as their ‘beneficent rulers’, or even spokesmen. That’s not how governance should or ever will work. Of course, Richard Haass’s salary is paid by those very interests he promotes—recall the Ford, Carnegie, Rockefeller, et al, foundations who were the quiet financiers—and even quieter beneficiaries—of such institutions as the CFR.
After all, would you trust a man who advocates for the following, as he did in that same 2006 article:
Moreover, states must be prepared to cede some sovereignty to world bodies if the international system is to function. This is already taking place in the trade realm. Governments agree to accept the rulings of the WTO because on balance they benefit from an international trading order even if a particular decision requires that they alter a practice that is their sovereign right to carry out.
Some governments are prepared to give up elements of sovereignty to address the threat of global climate change. Under one such arrangement, the Kyoto Protocol, which runs through 2012, signatories agree to cap specific emissions. What is needed now is a successor arrangement in which a larger number of governments, including the US, China, and India, accept emissions limits or adopt common standards because they recognize that they would be worse off if no country did.
He concludes that “sovereignty must be redefined if states are to cope with globalization”. How convenient—the age old thesis > anti-thesis > synthesis. The elites create “globalization” to trammel the world under the consumerist yoke, and then have the daftness to argue for nations to cede their sovereignty in order to “cope with” this artificial construct, as if it’s some ‘naturally occurring’ illness that must be inoculated against, rather than the completely arbitrary, illegal, un-democratic rapine it truly represents.
Globalization thus implies that sovereignty is not only becoming weaker in reality, but that it needs to become weaker. States would be wise to weaken sovereignty in order to protect themselves, because they cannot insulate themselves from what goes on elsewhere. Sovereignty is no longer a sanctuary.
But in the NYTimes puff piece, Haass goes on to urge that ‘recasting’ Democracy has now become a ‘national security concern’. That the longest-reigning leader of a group that’s pushed the selfsame policies that have now come home to roost appears himself so startled by the resultant effects must strike most—as it does me—as quite bemusing. What did they think would happen to their precious ‘democracy’ after spending decades pushing illiberal policies and the abnegation of state and bodily sovereignty (recall that CFR and related groups likewise pushed heavily for vaccines and the Covid fraud; indeed, Haass himself penned CFR-stamped articles on the matter).
Now, they’re terrified that the pathological narcissism, which has characterized the last thirty years of American foreign policy, has bred a world of instability and domestic fractiousness that has robbed the new generation of a once-promising future.
In line with my above posted ‘How the USSR’s Fall Unleashed…’ article, Richard Haass’s fatalistic turn has given me a stark realization of my own: that the post-Cold War era will likely be remembered as a brief American ‘belle epoque’. What Fukuyama’s declaration was meant to usher in, the age of American liberal democracy as the ascendant global utopian order, will instead be consigned to a blip of twenty or so blistered years—from the early 1990s to around 2010—during which America enjoyed the fruits of sole ‘superpower’ status, but squandered them with its bloodthirsty and immoral pursuit of total dominance.
Now that the karma has poisoned the wells and salted the soil, turning the American landscape into a funhouse horror of anti-traditionalist perversion rampant with governmental immorality and lawlessness, Haass finally finds the compunction within himself to worry about his poor country:
Over the past century, America has experienced other periods of division and discord — Jim Crow, McCarthyism, Vietnam, civil rights, Watergate. The assassinations and riots and war of 1968 often come to mind as a singularly miserable year in the life of the nation. But Mr. Haass sees this moment as even worse. “These were not threats to the system, the fabric,” he said. “That’s why I think this is more significant.”
Ah, so that’s the difference. It’s not a sense of patriotic nostalgia or newfound piety, but rather the fear that the rot has finally worked through to the very bedrock of his beloved ‘system’. And what system might that be, you wonder? Certainly he isn’t referencing the same American system many fondly recall—one possessing an erstwhile semblance of moral and intellectual integrity.
No, the system he’s so loath to lose is that of the privileged control he and his ‘untouchable’ class of globalist cronies enjoyed for so long while America was blinded by the euphoric high of its arch-nemesis’s downfall.
Some might question my condemnation of the country to an unalterable fate. After all, maybe a soupçon of hope remains for the ‘swamp’ being drained by some noble political savior. It’s true, we can expect some form of turn-back, as nature is, after all, cyclical. However, I believe in many ways that America’s time on top is up for good, simply because the tectonic shifts away from the unipolar model can never be repaired.
Though America itself may one day reform the teeming corruption at its core, it will never win back what was lost; the lost prestige and trust on the world stage, and more importantly the lost market share of the global economy to ascendant powers like China, which have every insurmountable demographic edge. Not to mention, America’s own irreversible demographic ails have condemned it to cede its preeminence in innovation, particularly once the H-1B emigrés currently fueling the majority of that innovation dry up in the wake of the dollar’s decline.
No, once the dollar reserve system is gone for good, it will never be back. The world will surely be the better for it, but the golden America of Haass’s idée fixe is long over.
The glowing NYTimes profile concludes thusly:
After exploring other countries for most of the past half-century, Mr. Haass is ready to explore his own. Putting his foreign policy hat aside for now, he said he wants to expand the message from his book and help refocus the country on the core values embodied in the Declaration of Independence as the 250th anniversary of the document approaches three years from now.
Would you imagine that. A man who championed the abolishment of sovereignty now makes claim to the sanctity of the Declaration of Independence, a document emblemizing the very principles of America’s sovereignty he seemed to recoil from like a vampire from garlic. Not to mention that the paragraph implicates Haass’s chief failing: he’s spent the better part of the past half-century “exploring other countries” while woefully neglecting his own. Shouldn’t he have been putting his own house in order, rather than devising ways on how to divvy up the rest of the world between his bankster coevals?
Ultimately, the keen-eyed who know how to parse the euphemistic globalist argot Haass’s ilk so shamelessly employ can see that the fractured ‘system’ he mourns is not one of “democracy” or “freedom”, or other such vapid bromides they’d have you believe they’re fighting for. No, what has really ruffled their feathers is the rise of nationalism, traditionalism, conservativism, and other blood-sworn foils to the globalist neoliberal plague blighting the Western world. This is really what Haass’s new crusade is all about. He doesn’t care about re-educating Americans on the ‘civic virtues’ of the Declaration of Independence—all that’s just piffle and pap for the gallery to distract us from the real effort.
What’s truly shaken their foundations is that Americans themselves are rediscovering those very civic virtues which Haass and his ilk have worked so assiduously to trample under cover of the military-industrial-corporate-media-complex’s campaign of mass menticide. And those virtues are existential threats to CFR and the globalist thinktanks that’ve attached themselves onto the fibrillating heart of America like parasitic tumors.
So, I don’t believe that Haass is riding off into the sunset on some bona fide quest to refill America’s moral cup, rather he’s likely embarking on a new crusade to quell the putative crisis of “white supremacy/nationalism” and “disinformation” that his ilk go to such lengths to gin up as threats. Clothed in the euphemisms of ‘civic virtues’ will instead be a re-education campaign to inculcate America’s newest generations with a fear and distrust of things like freedom of speech and populism, under the age-old specter of “disinformation” and the specious linking of same to ‘racism/xenophobia/white-supremacy’.
The intent, as always, will be to instill Americans with a sense for the truth; the correct™ truth, that is. Thus, I’m afraid Haass isn’t really sailing off into the twilight, but rather transitioning from an administrative role to that of astro-turfing field agent down on the ground. After all, the Council, like the CIA, is ostensibly focused on ‘foreign’ threats and issues, so work at ‘home’ must be done under a guise.
“They want a diverse candidate,” someone close to CFR said this week, just days before the Froman appointment. “It’s always been old white men at the top.”
In the end they settled for more of the same:
Though it appears his B’nai B’rith membership was considered diverse enough to meet their quotas.
Well, here’s a toast to the new era of the CFR; if it’s even half as ‘fruitful’ as Haass’s reign, Froman may be remembered as its Augustulus.
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