The One Trillion Dollar Consumer Auto Loan Bubble Is Beginning To Burst

By Michael Snyder, on September 6th, 2016

Do you remember the subprime mortgage meltdown from the last financial crisis?  Well, this time around we are facing a subprime auto loan meltdown.  In recent years, auto lenders have become more and more aggressive, and they have been increasingly willing to lend money to people that should not be borrowing money to buy a new vehicle under any circumstances.  Just like with subprime mortgages, this strategy seemed to pay off at first, but now economic reality is beginning to be felt in a major way.  Delinquency rates are up by double digit percentages, and major auto lenders are bracing for hundreds of millions of dollars of losses.  We are a nation that is absolutelydrowning in debt, and we are most definitely going to reap what we have sown.

The size of this market is larger than you may imagine.  Earlier this year, the auto loan bubble surpassed the one trillion dollar mark for the first time ever

Americans are borrowing more than ever for new and used vehicles, and 30- and 60-day delinquency rates rose in the second quarter, according to the automotive arm of one of the nation’s largest credit bureaus.

The total balance of all outstanding auto loans reached $1.027 trillion between April 1 and June 30, the second consecutive quarter that it surpassed the $1-trillion mark, reports Experian Automotive.

The average size of an auto loan is also at a record high.  At $29,880, it is now just a shade under $30,000.

In order to try to help people afford the payments, auto lenders are now stretching loans out for six or even seven years.  At this point it is almost like getting a mortgage.

But even with those stretched out loans, the average monthly auto loan payment is now up to a record 499 dollars.

That is the average loan size.  To me, this is absolutely infuriating, because only a very small percentage of wealthy Americans are able to afford a $499 monthly payment on a single vehicle.

Many middle class American families are only bringing in three or four thousand dollars a month (before taxes).  How in the world do they think that they can afford a five hundred dollar monthly auto loan payment on just one vehicle?

Just like with subprime mortgages, people are being taken advantage of severely, and the end result is going to be catastrophic for the U.S. financial system.

Already, auto loan delinquencies are rising to very frightening levels.  In July, 60 day subprime loan delinquencies were up 13 percent on a month-over-month basis and were up 17 percent compared to the same month last year.

Prime delinquencies were up 12 percent on a month-over-month basis and were up21 percent compared to the same month last year.

We have a huge crisis on our hands, and major auto lenders are setting aside massive amounts of cash in order to try to cover these losses.  The following comes from USA Today

In a quarterly filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Ford reported in the first half of this year it allowed $449 millionfor credit losses, a 34% increase from the first half of 2015.

General Motors reported in a similar filing that it set aside $864 million for credit losses in that same period of 2016, up 14% from a year earlier.

Meanwhile, other big corporations are also alarmed about the economic health of average U.S. consumers.  Just check out what Dollar General CEO Todd Vasos had to say about this just the other day

I know that when we look at globally the overall U.S. population, it seems like things are getting better. But when you really start breaking it down and you look at that core consumer that we serve on the lower economic scale that’s out there, that demographic,things have not gotten any better for her, and arguably, they’re worse. And they’re worse, because rents are accelerating, healthcare is accelerating on her at a very, very rapid clip.

The stock market may seem to be saying that everything is fine (for the moment), but the hard economic numbers are telling a completely different story.  What we are experiencing right now looks so similar to 2008, and this includes big institutions just dropping dead seemingly out of the blue.  On Tuesday, we learned that ITT Technical Institute is immediately shutting down and permanently closing all locations.  This is from a Los Angeles Times report

The company that operates the for-profit chain, one of the country’s largest, announced that it was permanently closing all its campuses nationwide. It blamed the shutdown on the recent move by the U.S. Education Department to ban ITT from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid.

“Two quarters ago there were rumors about the school having problems, but they told us that anyone who was already a student would be allowed to finish,” said Wiggins, who works as the assistant manager for a family-run auto parts business and went to ITT to open new opportunities.

“Am I angry?” he said. “I’m like angry times 10 million.”

As a result of this shutdown, 35,000 students are suddenly left out in the cold and approximately 8,000 employees have lost their jobs.

This is what happens during a major economic downturn.  Large institutions that may have been struggling under the surface for quite a while suddenly give up and drop a bomb on those that were depending on them.  In the months ahead, there will be a lot more examples of this.

Already, some of the biggest corporate names in America have been laying offthousands of workers in 2016.  Mass layoffs are usually an early warning sign that big trouble is ahead, so keep a close eye on those companies.

The pace of the economic decline has been a bit slower than many (including myself) originally anticipated, but without a doubt it has continued.

And it is undeniable that the stage is set for a crisis that will absolutely dwarf 2008.  Our national debt has nearly doubled since the beginning of the last crisis, corporate debt has doubled, student loan debt has crossed the trillion dollar mark, auto loan debt has crossed the trillion dollar mark, and total household debt has crossed the 12 trillion dollar mark.

We are living in the greatest debt bubble in world history, and there are signs that this giant bubble is now starting to burst.  And when it does, the pain is going to be greater than most people would dare to imagine.

“It’s Worse Than The Great Depression” – One In Six Prime-Aged Men Has No Job

Tyler Durden's picture

While Obama has repeatedly touted the sub-5.0% unemployment rate (4.9% most recently) as confirmation his “economic recovery” has been successful, what has received far less media attention has been the unprecedented surge in Americans no longer in the labor force, which as of August stood at a near-record 94.4 million.

And while the traditional response by economic apolists and the media has been that this number is the result of a demographic change in US society, with mostly older workers no longer in the labor pool, we have over the years argued that that is misleading, and that millions of prime-aged workers have fallen out as a result of drastic changes to America’s job market, coupled with structural lack of demand for legacy jobs, which has – for example – sent the number of employed waiters and bartenders to all time highs even as the number of manufacturing workers is lower than it was in December 2014.

 

Overnight, NPR confirmed precisely what we have claimed for so long, when it said that while the nation’s unemployment rate is half of what it was at the height of the Great Recession: saying that the unempoyment number “hides a big problem: Millions of men in their prime working years have dropped out of the workforce — meaning they aren’t working or even looking for a job.

Citing a recent report by Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors, NPR notes that 83% of men in the prime working ages of 25-54 who were not in the labor force had not worked in the previous year. So, essentially, 10 million men are missing from the workforce.

Putting that number in context, in the 1960s, nearly 100 percent of men between the ages of 25 and 54 worked. That’s fallen over the decades.

The condemnation of Obama’s “recovery” is dire: “One in six prime-age guys has no job; it’s kind of worse than it was in the depression in 1940,” says Nicholas Eberstadt, an economic and demographic researcher at American Enterprise Institute who wrote the book Men Without Work: America’s Invisible Crisis. He says these men aren’t even counted among the jobless, because they aren’t seeking work. According to Eberstadt little is known about the missing men, but there are numerous factors that make men less likely to be in the labor force — a lack of college degree, being single, or being black.

Why are men leaving? And what are they doing instead? An anecdote from NPR sheds some light:

 They might be like Romeo Barnes. He lives in District Heights, Md., and his last job as a Wal-Mart greeter ended 11 years ago. He’s 30, black, single and has cerebral palsy.

“I have able-bodied friends who can’t find work, so it’s not just me,” Barnes says.

He says he has sought administrative jobs but that his disability and not having a college degree hold him back.

“Men are traditionally known for labor work. The lower-educated guys have to do stuff like that. And that’s being taken away because we have machines,” he says.

Indeed, economists say technology and overseas competition are displacing many jobs. The number of people collecting disability insurance, like Barnes, has also increased.

AEI’s Eberstadt says criminal records may also play a factor. Some 20 million Americans have felony convictions — the vast majority of whom are men. But, he says, it’s hard to know how big a factor that is, because the government doesn’t keep data on their employment status.

“Something on the order of one out of every eight adult men has got a felony conviction, and we don’t have the slightest clue as to their employment patterns,” Eberstadt says.

What the missing men aren’t doing in large numbers is staying home to take care of family. 40% of nonworking women are primary caregivers; that’s true of only 5 percent of men out of the workforce. But they do exist: take the example of Virginia Beach dad Jory Rekkedal quit his IT job a year ago to take care of his two girls — a gig he has loved.

 “I wasn’t going to go back to work. It was almost going to just be a nice transition into retirement for me — a very early retirement. I mean, I’m only 36 years old,” he says.

And if he does go back to work, he worries about the prospects.

“Things move really, really, really quick [in IT], and I’m worried that if we can’t make it work, that I’m going to go looking for a job and they’re going to say two years out of it, ‘Sorry, brother, you don’t have what it takes to work here anymore,’ ” Rekkedal says.

Tara Sinclair, chief economist for job-search site Indeed.com, says brawny jobs are being replaced by brainy ones, and that trend doesn’t favor men. “The question is, is this the new normal? Or, with the right economic conditions, the right opportunities, will those people come back into the labor market?” she says.

It gets worse: Sinclair says if men keep exiting the workforce, that could strain the social safety net and hold back economic growth. Some, like Richard Hintzke, say they hope to go back to work. He shuttered his Detroit home-appraisal business after the housing market crashed in 2009 and considered his options.

 “You know, it looked like the sky was falling, so it was like, if there was ever a good time to disengage, I said, this is a good time,” he says. Hintzke, who is 53 and doesn’t have children, relocated to Austin, Texas, and has lived off income from investment properties.

 

He says he misses the camaraderie he felt while working and the feeling of contributing something. These days, he’s mulling a new career in holistic healing. But once you’re out of work for a while, he admits, it’s easy to lose momentum.

For now, however, there is little hope to get those tens of millions of inert prime-aged workers back into the labor force, and absent a substantial overhaul, coupled with reschooling of those who have been out of the workforce, the chances this troubling trend will reverse are slim to none. Meanwhile, it means that as the class and wealth divide courtesy of the Fed accelerates, the numbers of increasingly angry people who feel justifiably left out, will continue to rise, until one day not even all the government’s social safety nets will be able to prevent what comes next.

Kurtis Richard Kallenbach

New Video Series – A Must Watch!

What does one do when they realize all of what they’ve been taught their whole in life by people they’ve trusted and believed without question, is simply not true.

It causes what is known as “cognitive dissonance,” a psychological conflict resulting from incongruous beliefs and attitudes held simultaneously. This occurs because the truth of the matter is actually diametrically opposed to, or opposite what you’ve been taught.

After years of combing through ancient ecclesiastical archives and records, Kurtis Richard Kallenbach uncovers a deeply hidden system of pledging biological material, which unknowingly implicates everyone by presumption, and they become unsuspecting subscribers to the ROMAN CATHOLIC, Gregorian [circa 1582] anno Domini calendar timeline story, which in Medieval Latin, means in the year of the Lord 1 

Remember the famous quote by Colonel Edward Mandel House:

“Very soon, every American will be required to register their biological property (that’s you and your children) in a national system designed to keep track of the people and that will operate under the ancient system of pledging….” 2

Watch this series of videos to gain insight into the reality we find ourselves despite what you think you know or understand, or have been taught your whole life.

His contact information: www.kurtisrichardkallenbach.xyz

 

Notes:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anno_Domini#cite_note-8
  2. 1913 to 1921 (exact date unknown):  Colonel Edward Mandel House to Woodrow Wilson found in Wilson’s personal diary/logs.

ANOTHER VACCINE “BOMBSHELL” GLYPHOSATE – MONSANTO’S ROUNDUP – CONFIRMED IN MOST VACCINES

SOURCE: CATHERINE J. FROMPOVICH
Research scientist Anthony Samsel has confirmed that glyphosate, a key active chemical in Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup®, has been found in most vaccines! In this video, we hear Dr Samsel reciting his findings.


https://www.youtube.com/embed/k33iFXHlOnY

Additionally, Dr Samsel sent a letter to his Congressional Senator from New Hampshire wherein he gives Senator Shaheen permission to share his laboratory data on glyphosate-contaminated vaccines with “all members of Congress and the public.”

glyphosate vaccineWhat will Senator Shaheen do?

Will she have the presence of conscience to do what U.S. Congressman Bill Posey of Florida did when, in July of 2015, he went before Congress to ask for a congressional investigation into the science, fraud and collusion regarding the MMR vaccine—Autism connection found in African-American boys under three years of age, as exposed in 2014 by CDC epidemiologist William Thompson, PhD, one of the co-authors of the CDC report which eliminated that pertinent data and documentation from the CDC’s published information?


https://youtu.be/jGRjn_gIJw0?

One of the most important biochemical reasons for getting to the ‘bottom’ of the glyphosate fiasco being perpetrated upon U.S. and global citizens by the chemical and agricultural industries is that glyphosate is supposedly ‘safe’! Nothing is further from the scientific facts.

Here is one specific reason:

“Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases.”

Not only are humans exposed to glyphosate from numerous sources, e.g., herbicides, pesticides, sprays, GMO-crops/foods/ingredients in processed foods as RESIDUES, we now have confirmed scientific research and numerical datathat glyphosate is present in VACCINES, which are injected into infants, toddlers, teens, and adults?

Compounding the above science is the fact that no one at the U.S. CDC/FDA even is considering the most elemental scientific theorem: chemical interaction, e.g., vaccine ingredients and giving nine vaccines at one time!

In high school chemistry aren’t students taught the importance of chemical interactions, especially when mixing several chemicals in a laboratory beaker? What can happen? An explosion! A similar chemical reaction occurs within the human body — the largest living, working test tube on earth, however it causes adverse health effects, not an explosion. And yet those who should know how science and chemicals work synergistically continue to pollute the human organism with more and more toxins, including nanoparticles which also are in vaccines!

As “defense” for the above statements I have made, I direct readers to the 2014 published article“Major Pesticides Are More Toxic to Human Cells Than Their Declared Active Principles” and what’s stated in the Abstract:

Pesticides are used throughout the world as mixtures called formulations. They contain adjuvants, which are often kept confidential and are called inerts by the manufacturing companies, plus a declared active principle, which is usually tested alone. We tested the toxicity of 9 pesticides, comparing active principles and their formulations, on three human cell lines (HepG2, HEK293, and JEG3). Glyphosate, isoproturon, fluroxypyr, pirimicarb, imidacloprid, acetamiprid, tebuconazole, epoxiconazole, and prochloraz constitute, respectively, the active principles of 3 major herbicides, 3 insecticides, and 3 fungicides. We measured mitochondrial activities, membrane degradations, and caspases 3/7 activities. Fungicides were the most toxic from concentrations 300–600 times lower than agricultural dilutions, followed by herbicides and then insecticides, with very similar profiles in all cell types. Despite its relatively benign reputation, Roundup was among the most toxic herbicides and insecticides tested. Most importantly, 8 formulations out of 9 were up to one thousand times more toxic than their active principles. Our results challenge the relevance of the acceptable daily intake for pesticides because this norm is calculated from the toxicity of the active principle alone. Chronic tests on pesticides may not reflect relevant environmental exposures if only one ingredient of these mixtures is tested alone.

Furthermore, glyphosate is known to “promote endocrine disrupting effects after entering cells.” [1]

However, glyphosate can be only the ‘tip of the iceberg’ because according to researchers investigating “formulations as mixtures,” “Since pesticides are always used with adjuvants [the same as vaccines use adjuvants] that could change their toxicity, the necessity to assess their whole formulations as mixtures becomes obvious.” [1]

Although the above articles talk about pesticides, I think everyone regards “pesticides” as any chemical in that category as a “bug killer” or “insect killer.”

Pesticides are a class of chemicals designed to kill pests (rodents, insects, or plants) that may affect agricultural crops or carry diseases like malaria and typhus. [2] [CJF emphasis]

The fact that those chemicals are designed TO KILL indicates the harms they can do to any LIVING organism, regardless of exposure or dilution! There are some man-made chemicals that can be diluted to the ratio equivalent of a whiskey-shot-glass of chemical to a large swimming pool of water and still be deadly!

Why there are so many toxic chemicals deliberately placed into vaccines defies my knowledge of science, medicine, nutrition, research, and human empathy on the part of those who are supposed to be ‘protectors of health’, the medical profession, i.e., doctors, nurses, researchers, and the pharmaceutical industry.

Granted, there are some medical professionals who do not partake in the poisoning of children and expose the chemical horrors of vaccines but they are vilified, even some supposedly may have been “offed” for their expository work.

Now we have more and definitive confirmation that glyphosate is in most vaccines that are given to infants and children.

What more proof do we need for Congress, including the President of the USA if black lives matter, to demand and to perform an independent, thorough investigation (and/or criminal trial) with outside independent researchers testifying — not Big Pharma’s lackey scientists — to get to the bottom of why so many children are being chemically abused — legally too! — and why humanity’s future generations are being deprived of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

What’s happened to the Nuremberg Code [3]?

Everyone talks about and demands their “human rights” [4], however, the most fundamental of human rights, i.e., not being poisoned daily [air, water and food] or by mandatory vaccine injections, are not being addressed and guaranteed by anyone. Why? Shouldn’t we make that a primary issue and right, especially in view of the CDC’s proposed rule to forcefully place citizens into quarantine and receive vaccines irregardless’ with the CDC’s self-assumed rule making now that we know glyphosate is in vaccines?

References:

[1] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23000283
[2] https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/substances/toxchemicallisting.asp?sysid=31
[3] https://history.nih.gov/research/downloads/nuremberg.pdf
[4] http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/issues?gclid=CIvmse_Z-M4CFcYfhgodGT4JvA

Image Credit

Catherine J Frompovich (website) is a retired natural nutritionist who earned advanced degrees in Nutrition and Holistic Health Sciences, Certification in Orthomolecular Theory and Practice plus Paralegal Studies. Her work has been published in national and airline magazines since the early 1980s. Catherine authored numerous books on health issues along with co-authoring papers and monographs with physicians, nurses, and holistic healthcare professionals. She has been a consumer healthcare researcher 35 years and counting.

Catherine’s latest book, published October 4, 2013, is Vaccination Voodoo, What YOU Don’t Know About Vaccines, available on Amazon.com.

Her 2012 book A Cancer Answer, Holistic BREAST Cancer Management, A Guide to Effective & Non-Toxic Treatments, is available on Amazon.com and as a Kindle eBook.

Two of Catherine’s more recent books on Amazon.com are Our Chemical Lives And The Hijacking Of Our DNA, A Probe Into What’s Probably Making Us Sick (2009) and Lord, How Can I Make It Through Grieving My Loss, An Inspirational Guide Through the Grieving Process (2008)

Catherine’s NEW book: Eat To Beat Disease, Foods Medicinal Qualities ©2016 Catherine J Frompovich is now available

Texas Criminal District Attorney with Vaccine Injured Child Speaks Out: Vaccines Do Cause Autism

September 2, 2016| Health Impact News

The film VAXXED continues to be shown in new cities across the U.S., with the film crew also traveling to these cities to sponsor Q&A sessions after the filming. Producer Del Bigtree states that the story of the CDC whistleblower and cover-up told in the film is “Bigger than Watergate.

The film crew also films parents of vaccine damaged or vaccine killed children who turn out to view the film and tell their own stories. Each city they go to reveals incredible stories of families who have suffered from vaccines, and wish they had known more about the risks before agreeing with doctors who seldom, if ever, discuss the side effects and risks.

The film crew was recently in San Antonio, Texas where they met Nico LaHood, the criminal District Attorney for San Antonio. You can watch the interview with Nico and his wife below.

The video starts out with Nico in his office, identifying himself and his position as the criminal District Attorney, and then he makes this statement:

I am here to tell you that vaccines can and do cause autism.

Polly Tommey, the co-producer of VAXXED, then interviews Nico with his wife Davida. She starts out by having Nico describe his job as a criminal prosecutor. He states:

So what I do, is I follow evidence. I am an empirical data guy.

He explains how he has to have strong and conclusive evidence in each case, so he can present it to a jury.

Tommey then asks what their beliefs were in regards to doctors and vaccines, before they even had children, and both parents explain how they never doubted what doctors and others said about vaccines, and how they considered them just routine procedures that should be injected into children.

When their first child, their daughter, was vaccinated, she developed a severe skin rash. But the doctors never associated it with the vaccinations. They were never told that this kind of skin reaction is listed as a side effect of some vaccines.

Next, the parents discuss their son Michael, who was a very alert and talkative baby before receiving some vaccines at 18 months. After his 18 month round of vaccines, he developed a twitch. When they could no longer easily make eye contact with their child, they knew there was something seriously wrong. He was diagnosed with autism. He is now 6 years old, and not able to verbally communicate.

Nico then states that he consulted with a friend of his who used to be a scientist for the drug company Merck, which manufacturers many of the childhood vaccines. His wife is a nurse, and they both have decided NOT to vaccinate their children, given the information they know about the dangers of vaccines, and their ingredients.

Nico then began to investigate vaccines, and found out that his family’s experience was also the experience of thousands of other families around the country.

Nico believes that the “circumstantial evidence” that vaccines cause autism in many children is so strong, that he could prosecute the case before a jury and win.

Of course, he cannot do that, because U.S. law gives total legal immunity to pharmaceutical companies for vaccine products, and they cannot be sued for injuries or deaths as a result of their vaccines.

Watch the entire interview:

A world war has begun. Break the silence.

by John Pilger | 20 March 2016

I have been filming in the Marshall Islands, which lie north of Australia, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Whenever I tell people where I have been, they ask, “Where is that?” If I offer a clue by referring to “Bikini”, they say, “You mean the swimsuit.”

Few seem aware that the bikini swimsuit was named to celebrate the nuclear explosions that destroyed Bikini island. Sixty-six nuclear devices were exploded by the United States in the Marshall Islands between 1946 and 1958 — the equivalent of 1.6 Hiroshima bombs every day for twelve years.

Bikini is silent today, mutated and contaminated.  Palm trees grow in a strange grid formation. Nothing moves. There are no birds. The headstones in the old cemetery are alive with radiation. My shoes registered “unsafe” on a Geiger counter.

Standing on the beach, I watched the emerald green of the Pacific fall away into a vast black hole. This was the crater left by the hydrogen bomb they called “Bravo”. The explosion poisoned people and their environment for hundreds of miles, perhaps forever.

On my return journey, I stopped at Honolulu airport and noticed an American magazine called Women’s Health. On the cover was a smiling woman in a bikini swimsuit, and the headline: “You, too, can have a bikini body.”  A few days earlier, in the Marshall Islands, I had interviewed women who had very different “bikini bodies”; each had suffered thyroid cancer and other life-threatening cancers.

Unlike the smiling woman in the magazine, all of them were impoverished: the victims and guinea pigs of a rapacious  superpower that is today more dangerous than ever.

I relate this experience as a warning and to interrupt a distraction that has consumed so many of us.  The founder of modern propaganda, Edward Bernays, described this phenomenon as “the conscious and intelligent manipulation of the habits and opinions” of democratic societies. He called it an “invisible government”.

How many people are aware that a world war has begun? At present, it is a war of propaganda, of lies and distraction, but this can change instantaneously with the first mistaken order, the first missile.

In 2009, President Obama stood before an adoring crowd in the centre of Prague, in the heart of Europe. He pledged himself to make “the world free from nuclear weapons”. People cheered and some cried. A torrent of platitudes flowed from the media. Obama was subsequently awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

It was all fake. He was lying.

The Obama administration has built more nuclear weapons, more nuclear warheads, more nuclear delivery systems, more nuclear factories.  Nuclear warhead spending alone rose higher under Obama than under any American president. The cost over thirty years is more than $1 trillion.

A mini nuclear bomb is planned. It is known as the B61 Model 12. There has never been anything like it. General James Cartwright, a former Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has said, “Going smaller [makes using this nuclear] weapon more thinkable.”

In the last eighteen months, the greatest build-up of military forces since World War Two — led by the United States — is taking place along Russia’s western frontier.  Not since Hitler invaded the Soviet Union have foreign troops presented such a demonstrable threat to Russia.

Ukraine – once part of the Soviet Union –  has become a CIA theme park. Having orchestrated a coup in Kiev, Washington effectively controls a regime that is next door and hostile to Russia: a regime rotten with Nazis, literally. Prominent parliamentary figures in Ukraine are the political descendants of the notorious OUN and UPA fascists. They openly praise Hitler and call for the persecution and expulsion of the Russian speaking minority.

This is seldom news in the West, or it is inverted to suppress the truth.

In Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia — next door to Russia – the US military is deploying combat troops, tanks, heavy weapons. This extreme provocation of the world’s second nuclear power is met with silence in the West.

What makes the prospect of nuclear war even more dangerous is a parallel campaign against China.

Seldom a day passes when China is not elevated to the status of a “threat”.  According to Admiral Harry Harris, the US Pacific commander, China is “building a great wall of sand in the South China Sea”.

What he is referring to is China building airstrips in the Spratly Islands, which are the subject of a dispute with the Philippines – a dispute without priority until Washington pressured and bribed the government in Manila and the Pentagon launched a propaganda campaign called “freedom of navigation”.

What does this really mean?  It means freedom for American warships to patrol and dominate the coastal waters of China.  Try to imagine the American reaction if Chinese warships did the same off the coast of California.

I made a film called The War You Don’t See, in which I interviewed distinguished journalists in America and Britain: reporters such as Dan Rather of CBS, Rageh Omar of the BBC, David Rose of the Observer.

All of them said that had journalists and broadcasters done their job and questioned the propaganda that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction; had the lies of George W. Bush and Tony Blair not been amplified and echoed by journalists, the 2003 invasion of Iraq might not have happened, and  hundreds of thousands of men, women and children would be alive today.

The propaganda laying the ground for a war against Russia and/or  China is no different in principle. To my knowledge, no journalist in the Western “mainstream” — a Dan Rather equivalent, say –asks why China is building airstrips in the South China Sea.

The answer ought to be glaringly obvious. The United States is encircling China with a network of bases, with ballistic missiles, battle groups, nuclear -armed bombers.

This lethal arc extends from Australia to the islands of the Pacific, the Marianas and the Marshalls and Guam, to the Philippines, Thailand, Okinawa, Korea and  across Eurasia to Afghanistan and India. America has hung a noose around the neck of China. This is not news. Silence by media; war by media.

In 2015, in high secrecy, the US and Australia staged the biggest single air-sea military exercise in recent history, known as Talisman Sabre. Its aim was to rehearse an Air-Sea Battle Plan, blocking sea lanes, such as the Straits of Malacca and the Lombok Straits, that cut off China’s access to oil, gas and other vital raw materials from the Middle East and Africa.

In the circus known as the American presidential campaign, Donald Trump is being presented as a lunatic, a fascist.  He is certainly odious; but he is also a media hate figure.  That alone should arouse our scepticism.

Trump’s views on migration are grotesque, but no more grotesque than those of David Cameron. It is not Trump who is the Great Deporter from the United States, but the Nobel Peace Prize winner, Barack Obama.

According to one prodigious liberal commentator, Trump is “unleashing the dark forces of violence” in the United States. Unleashing them?

This is the country where toddlers shoot their mothers and the police wage a murderous war against black Americans. This is the country that has attacked and sought to overthrow more than 50 governments, many of them democracies, and bombed from Asia to the Middle East, causing the deaths and dispossession of millions of people.

No country can equal this systemic record of violence. Most of America’s wars (almost all of them against defenceless countries) have been launched not by Republican presidents but by liberal Democrats: Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter, Clinton, Obama.

In 1947, a series of National Security Council directives described the paramount aim of American foreign policy as “a world substantially made over in [America’s] own image”.  The ideology was messianic Americanism. We were all Americans. Or else. Heretics would be converted, subverted, bribed, smeared or crushed.

Donald Trump is a symptom of this, but he is also a maverick. He says the invasion of Iraq was a crime; he doesn’t want to go to war with Russia and China. The danger to the rest of us is not Trump, but Hillary Clinton. She is no maverick. She embodies the resilience and violence of a system whose vaunted “exceptionalism” is totalitarian with an occasional liberal face.

As presidential  election day draws near, Clinton will be hailed as the first female president, regardless of her crimes and lies – just as Barack Obama was lauded as the first black president and liberals swallowed his nonsense about “hope”. And the drool goes on.

Described by the Guardian columnist Owen Jones as “funny, charming, with a coolness that eludes practically every other politician”, Obama the other day sent drones to slaughter 150 people in Somalia.  He kills people usually on Tuesdays, according to the New York Times, when he is handed a list of candidates for death by drone. So cool.

In the 2008 presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton threatened to “totally obliterate” Iran with nuclear weapons.  As Secretary of State under Obama, she participated in the overthrow of the democratic government of Honduras. Her contribution to the destruction of Libya in 2011 was almost gleeful. When the Libyan leader, Colonel Gaddafi, was publicly sodomised with a knife – a murder made possible by American logistics – Clinton gloated over his death: “We came, we saw, he died.”

One of Clinton’s closest allies is Madeleine Albright, the former secretary of State, who has attacked young women for not supporting “Hillary”. This is the same Madeleine Albright  who infamously celebrated on TV the death of half a million Iraqi children as “worth it”.

Among Clinton’s biggest backers are the Israel lobby and the arms companies that fuel the violence in the Middle East.  She and her husband have received a fortune from Wall Street. And yet, she is about to be ordained the women’s candidate, to see off the evil Trump, the official demon. Her supporters include distinguished feminists: the likes of Gloria Steinem in the US and Anne Summers in Australia.

A generation ago, a post-modern cult now known as “identity politics” stopped many intelligent, liberal-minded people examining the causes and individuals they supported — such as the fakery of Obama and Clinton;  such as bogus progressive movements like Syriza in Greece, which betrayed the people of that country and allied with their enemies.

Self absorption, a kind of “me-ism”, became the new zeitgeist in privileged western societies and signaled the demise of great collective movements against war, social injustice, inequality,  racism and sexism.

Today, the long sleep may be over. The young are stirring again. Gradually. The thousands in Britain who supported Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader are part of this awakening – as are those who rallied to support Senator Bernie Sanders.

In Britain last week, Jeremy Corbyn’s closest ally, his shadow treasurer John McDonnell, committed a Labour government to pay off the debts of piratical banks and, in effect, to continue so-called austerity.

In the US, Bernie Sanders has promised to support Clinton if or when she’s nominated. He, too, has voted for America’s use of violence against countries when he thinks it’s “right”. He says Obama has done “a great job”.

In Australia, there is a kind of mortuary politics, in which tedious parliamentary games are played out in the media while refugees and Indigenous people are persecuted and inequality grows, along with the danger of war. The government of Malcolm Turnbull has just announced a so-called defence budget of $195 billion that is a drive to war.  There was no debate. Silence.

What has happened to the great tradition of popular direct action, unfettered to parties? Where is the courage, imagination and commitment required to begin the long journey to a better, just and peaceful world? Where are the dissidents in art, film, the theatre, literature?

Where are those who will shatter the silence? Or do we wait until the first nuclear missile is fired?

This is an edited version of an address by John Pilger at the University of Sydney, entitled A World War Has Begun. Follow John Pilger on Twitter @johnpilger