Crux of The Structure of Empires by John Michael Greer:

  • “Free trade is simply one of the mechanisms of empire in the age of industrialism, one part of the wealth pump that concentrated the wealth of the globe in Britain during the years of its imperial dominion and does the same thing for the benefit of the United States today.”
  • “Flows of wealth can be used to trace out the structure of empire”: It is a pyramid of nations, each extracting wealth from those under it.
  • Inside each nation, there’s a pyramid of people, each extracting wealth from those under themselves: “The vast majority of people in the imperial nation and its allies, and a certain fraction of those even in the most heavily exploited subject nations, receive at least a modest share of wealth and privilege in exchange for their cooperation in maintaining the imperial system”.