The Year America Dissolved

By Paul Craig Roberts

Guest writer for Greg Hunter’s

It was 2017.  Clans were governing America.

The first clans organized around local police forces. The conservatives’ war on crime during the late 20th century and the Bush/Obama war on terror during the first decade of the 21st century had resulted in the police becoming militarized and unaccountable. 

As society broke down, the police became warlords. The state police broke apart, and the officers were subsumed into the local forces of their communities. The newly formed tribes expanded to encompass the relatives and friends of the police.

The dollar had collapsed as world reserve currency in 2012 when the worsening economic depression made it clear to Washington’s creditors that the federal budget deficit was too large to be financed except by the printing of money.

With the dollar’s demise, import prices skyrocketed. As Americans were unable to afford foreign-made goods, the transnational corporations that were producing offshore for US markets were bankrupted, further eroding the government’s revenue base.

The government was forced to print money in order to pay its bills, causing domestic prices to rise rapidly. Faced with hyperinflation, Washington took recourse in terminating Social Security and Medicare and followed up by confiscating the remnants of private pensions. This provided a one-year respite, but with no more resources to confiscate, money creation and hyperinflation resumed.

Organized food deliveries broke down when the government fought hyperinflation with fixed prices and the mandate that all purchases and sales had to be in US paper currency. Unwilling to trade appreciating goods for depreciating paper, goods disappeared from stores.

Washington responded as Lenin had done during the “war communism” period of Soviet history. The government sent troops to confiscate goods for distribution in kind to the population. This was a temporary stop-gap until existing stocks were depleted, as future production was discouraged. Much of the confiscated stocks became the property of the troops who seized the goods.

Goods reappeared in markets under the protection of local warlords. Transactions were conducted in barter and in gold, silver, and copper coins.

Other clans organized around families and individuals who possessed stocks of food, bullion, guns and ammunition. Uneasy alliances formed to balance differences in clan strengths. Betrayals quickly made loyalty a necessary trait for survival.

Large scale food and other production broke down as local militias taxed distribution as goods moved across local territories.  Washington seized domestic oil production and refineries, but much of the government’s gasoline was paid for safe passage across clan territories.

Most of the troops in Washington’s overseas bases were abandoned. As their resource stocks were drawn down, the abandoned soldiers were forced into alliances with those with whom they had been fighting.

Washington found it increasingly difficult to maintain itself. As it lost control over the country, Washington was less able to secure supplies from abroad as tribute from those Washington threatened with nuclear attack. Gradually other nuclear powers realized that the only target in America was Washington.  The more astute saw the writing on the wall and slipped away from the former capital city.

When Rome began her empire, Rome’s currency consisted of gold and silver coinage. Rome was well organized with efficient institutions and the ability to supply troops in the field so that campaigns could continue indefinitely, a monopoly in the world of Rome’s time.

When hubris sent America in pursuit of overseas empire, the venture coincided with the offshoring of American manufacturing, industrial, and professional service jobs and the corresponding erosion of the government’s tax base, with the advent of massive budget and trade deficits, with the erosion of the fiat paper currency’s value, and with America’s dependence on foreign creditors and puppet rulers.

The Roman Empire lasted for centuries. The American one collapsed overnight.

Rome’s corruption became the strength of her enemies, and the Western Empire was overrun.

America’s collapse occurred when government ceased to represent the people and became the instrument of a private oligarchy. Decisions were made in behalf of short-term profits for the few at the expense of unmanageable liabilities for the many. Overwhelmed by liabilities, the government collapsed.

Globalism had run its course. Life reformed on a local basis.


Paul Craig Roberts /span> [email him] was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury during President Reagan’s first term.  He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal.  He has held numerous academic appointments, including the William E. Simon Chair, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Georgetown University, and Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He was awarded the Legion of Honor by French President Francois Mitterrand. He is the author of Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider’s Account of Policymaking in Washington;  Alienation and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice. Click here for Peter Brimelow’s Forbes Magazine interview with Roberts about the recent epidemic of prosecutorial misconduct. 

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  1. John Bernard

    This is a great article which has been on survival blogs in one form or another for quite some time. The interesting thing about it is that by being on your site it has reached more of a main stream audience.

    • Greg

      Thank you John.

  2. Kevet Jahorah

    You have a great blog and great articles. But when you publish this level of garbage, fear mongering bs, it hurts your credibility. My faith in this blog is definitely tarnished. Its one thing to quote JS Mineset and have a reciprocal relationship there. This is utter garbage.

    • Greg

      So sorry to disappoint. I know Mr. Roberts is a guest writer with a point of view that is extreme but I feel all info and angles should be considered by readers. I appreciate the feedback. Thank you for taking the time to comment.

      • Kevet Jahorah

        Greg – my apologies for my rough worded comment. I didn’t know how to reach this missive to you, and so I decided to Reply to the comment. You are a class act as evidenced by your reply to my comment, but more so with the real solid work you do with your blog. Please accept my apologies. I am just getting tired of the fear and extremist views etc. even though I realize there is a lot of truth in these articles. Let me end with saying your blog is something I look forward to reading and is one of the best news outlets out there.

        • Greg

          No apology necessary. All views are accepted here and that includes criticism. Thank you for your continued support.

      • MarkM

        Hello Greg,

        I think Paul is not an extremist per sey, but someone who performs risk analysis. The scenario he depicts is a possibility. I don’t believe Kevert is a student of history. Paul used a template derived from history, and used it to create a “possible” scenario.

        I believe that there are three planes of thought: the emotional plane, the reality or logical plane, and the philosophical plane. Kevert seems to be stuck in the “emotional plane” of thinking. “Stage One” thinkers are really boring.

        Thanks for your work Greg,


        • Greg

          Thank you for weighing in.

    • Stephen Clifton

      I need to respond to this response. This response is no doubt the result of years of U.S. education and constantly being told how great we are that we fail to see the mistakes we make and the possible future implications. This arrogance is at the heart of the problem with our nation. We in a sense feel that we are “too big to fail”. We also trust that the people in power serve our interests because we vote them in. We have turned into a pseudo-fascist country where corporate and state power have merged to create this oligarchy that prevents true productivity as it’s a threat to their absolute power.

      I have no idea what will happen if the United States collapses nor does the guest writer however, we do know this has happened before and will happen again. Inflation, price controls, food riots, breakdown of society in general. Ask the people of Argentina, Zimbabwe or Greece how they feel about the debt noose that was choking their productivity, If you think we are impervious to this type of breakdown because of our military might go back to the Roman Empire. Italy has been and still is a divided country since that monumental breakdown.

      If you are going to fault Greg for anything it’s the picture of a Kevin Costner movie on top of the article. Other than that this is a good read.


  3. Tazio Zatori

    Supere Aude Paul Craig,

    I’m new to USAWatchdog and was impressed with your date of 2017 as it coincides with my work-in- process gold trading model; i.e., THE GOLDEN PHOENIX: Proprietary Algorithmic [intelligent (strong AI), complex, evolutionary or ICE algorithms] Gold Forecasting & Trading Model, which currently and heuristically predicts that gold bullion will be valued at more than $3,350 +/- $150 per ounce by 2017.

    Now until 2020 will be a decade of great and dynamic geo-political, socio-economic and valuable knowledge-based change with the value of gold bullion being the single most accurate indicator of this rapidly accelerating change. And, in my considered analysis, the relatively few open-minded, clear-thinking, freedom-loving individuals will be increasingly re-cognizing, returning to and re-establishing a global De Facto Private Gold Bullion Standard.

    “The task is not so much to see what no one yet has seen, but to think what no mind yet has thought about that which everyone sees… But life is short and truth works far and lives long so, let us [always] speak/[write] the truth.” – Arthur Schopenhauer

    So, keep on writing the truth, Paul Craig, and at least the fewer than 4% of US will have valuable knowledge to work with as the antidote to the MSM’s unadulterated Caca del Toro.

    What do you think of The Daily Bell and

    Semper fi!

    • Greg

      I thank you for Mr. Roberts.

  4. Bob

    Gold is still just a currency, a pound of gold for a pound of potatoes. A man who labors in a potato field is worth his weight in gold but the middle man has no trade only a scheme to profit off others. The Tradesmen have been fighting with the money schemers forever. My son ask whats wrong in Haiti it’s simple the money people are in control they are not builders. The builders of the Constitution tried to keep are labor safe from others but the others always show up when the work is done. A banker can be fair at his trade and help build a town are he can take and be a schemer.

    • George

      No offense but even 5,000 years ago the peon growing the pound of potatoes worked for the guy with the pound of gold. I’ll take my chances with arbitrage. There is always a surplus of something some where and a deficit elsewhere. Did you miss out on the last 5,000 years of history? My plan is to have a supply of stored wealth [gold, silver, copper, food, ammo, land] and to keep it.

      • in the woods

        George no offense taken. It’s good to have more then one thing to trade with, gold was use in the past to seal a trade it will be need in the future. At one time in history I would like to think a mans word, was as good as gold. I look up [ arbitrage] how I take it’s meaning, is to have power over a trade. My plan is to keep learning the old ways of growing and canning food. Right now the wine making thing should come in handy. The Moonshiner always goes to the party and comes back home with a profit. Peace to you on the trail brother

  5. MikeD

    Sounds like a plausible scenario.

    But while most of us readers here see what is coming, no one seems to be willing to get organized. I have no idea where I will go when it all hits the fan, other than far away from the metropolitan area where I, my wife & 2 kids live.

    And trying to explain what’s happening to my other half is an exercise in futility, so it’s up to me to know what to do when it happens.

    You can only stockpile food for so long. You can only have so many bullets. That’s not a long-term survival plan.

    Or is everyone just willing to declare this a free-for-all and say good luck? Someone is going to have to build this country back up the way it should be, and that responsibility is going to fall on people like us.

  6. George

    Hi Mike,
    True. You can only store so much. Then you have to be able to replenish. If you know what the barbarians did to Rome; then you know what the ne’er-do-well will do to you and you family. I fear it is going to be a free for all. People will take what you have and they may or may not be in police or military uniform. You need a plan soon or be a leaf caught in the whirlwind.
    If you are not out of city when everything fails, you best have family that has land in the country and a plan to get there. This is not something you can work at after the system fails unless you have one of the private armies above.
    Believe it or not, my wife and I have a two year plan to get out of the city and buy enough land for a few horses, and fifty acres to farm. I plan to open a microbrewery in the small town. And I am planning for a spire at each end of our house. I will know enough fellow red necks and be known by enough to be considered part of the tribe.
    Good Luck. I’m not even sure I have two years but it’s the best I can do.
    God I hope I’m wrong but I’m planning like I’m right. Just look at history and Be afraid. Be very, very afraid

  7. George

    Is that Kevin Costner?

    • Greg

      Yes it is Costner from the movie the Postman.

  8. BLT

    Wow greg. I think kevet was only drawn to the blog because u had mel gibson in the headlines the other day. Damn!! I guess you didn’t see the consequences of that name drop!! Hehe. Anyhoo great read, and to ignorant folks out there that don’t realize it, this situation has been unfolding for years, if they can’t see it that just means more food and ammo for us! Jking, thanx greg!

    • Greg

      Kevet and I are good– read her next comment below. Thank you for your support.

  9. Tom

    Mr. Roberts is the one who should dissolve. I distinctly remember what was supposed to have been his literary swan song about six months ago. Ahhh, let me guess – his left-wing “fan base” clamored for his return.

    • Greg

      Mr. Roberts was an Assistant Treasury Secretary in the Reagan Administration. That does not sound like a left wing guy to me. Even if he was from the left, I’d let him have his say just like someone from the right. I feel all views should be considered and I am happy he is back writing again. Sorry you did not like the post. Thank you for your comment.

      • George

        how about that. Balanced view points from the loony left, righteous right and everyone in between. What a concept! its a shame that the MSM doesn’t do it 😉

        • Greg

          I couldn’t have said it better. Thank you!!

  10. David Conrad


    I fear Mr. Roberts might not be that far off. Yes, you are fair and yes you do present all sides. And yes, Mr. Roberts has a definite (albeit scary) point of view.

    Rome fell because of decay and cancer within. Sound familiar?

    • Greg

      Good point. Rome also debased its currency. Near the end, the empire actually had a silver clad copper coin. Currency debasement is also a familiar modern theme. Thank you for your support and comment!!!!

  11. Mike

    What I think you should do / invest in to prepare:

  12. Stardust

    I have to say, just like many other fear based leaning blogs, the end is still the same. Your rush to hang on to material things truly only highlights how little faith or power you all really have. You use words like “End of time”, “Armaghedon”, “Financial Tsunami”, “my”, “Mine” but you seem to forget that the HUMAN RACE is far more powerful than hanging on to material things. Ask many AA who survived Slavery. Ask the many native americans who survived the slaughters. Ask the many jews who survived the Nazi murdering of millions.

    Please take a break, realize life is short, and having a bit more faith and inner power will go a long way. Some have nothing, but have so much more than all the Rich folks on wallstreet. Beside you can have all the money/gold/ammo/water…and be alive, but live a MISERABLE LIFE. The more you fear, the more your fears become YOUR reality. In an other word based on your thinkings, the end of the world happens everyday…for many who die. For when you are no longer, it could be your end of the world.

    • Greg

      You can just sit there but I’m fighting to get to the other side of this mess. There will be a better life in the future. Good luck doing nothing.

  13. Get Backlinks

    I love the expression. Everyone needs to express there own opinion and feel free to hear others. Keep it up 🙂

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