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The Irony Of Calling America A 'Banana Republic'

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/01/13/irony-calling-america-banana-republic

by all measures the US is or is entering failed state status


The interaction between companies like The United Fruit Company, and the CIA (the US government) brought up in this story, are exactly why the CIA was formed in the first place. The antifascists that fought in WWII in the OSS (the forerunner to the CIA) were all but purged by the time the agency was given it’s charter in 1947. Led by the Dulles brothers, and other fascist supporters it became the “muscle men” to protect Wall Street and US corporate interests around the world, “intelligence” was merely their cover story, and for all practical purposes an afterthought of their operations. Truman realized this, and how bad he had screwed up approving their charter, after the assassination of President Kennedy.


The biggest differences between Amerika and “banana republics”?

  1. Amerika has bases in 165 nations, and thousands of nuclear weapons ready to end life on earth at any moment.

  2. Pretty much every single “banana republic” has free, universal healthcare.


The USA should be called a "BOMB REPUBLIC"

I am a big backer of single payer, and I am pretty certain that what you’re saying here isnt true. Many of the Latin American countries have made substantial improvements since the status quo in the 1980s when it was normal for people to have to pay large sums of money upfront for poor people to get needed medical care in many Latin American countries.

But in 1986, at a meeting in Punta Del Este, Uruguay, a process began - The Uruguay Round, which led to the Marrakesh Agreement and the creation of the WTO, which began the biggest setback ever for public healthcare.

In 1995 the WTO came into existence. It begun a war on public healthcare, and low cost generic drugs.

Pretty much every single “banana republic” has free, universal healthcare.

This is not true. I wish it was, but its not. Similarly, its not the case in Europe, either.

The truth is actually quite depressing.

The WTO, is privatizing healthcare all around the world,. and yes, we are among the very few countries leading this push.

That’s the fact. Its not helpful to make misrepresentations portraying the situation as better than it is.

If you want to learn about what we’re doing, look at the policies of the WTO, IMF, World Bank, OAS, etc.

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The US of A is an Empire in decline. When it hits bottom it will be a failed state. On the way down we will see a lot more rebellions of the people. The D and R politicos will try to retain power with the help of the global oligarchy to keep this sinking ship afloat…This is not going to end well…


Exactly. Like Smedley Butler said, he was a gangster for capitalism/bankers, or something to that effect…

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The biggest difference between the USA and banana republics is that the US is the center/controller of Empire, and the banana republics are simply vassals of capitalist oligarchs. Just another iteration of the British Empire that collapsed after WWII and got absorbed into the blob of USA control - along with many other European western nations.

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I don’t know for sure, but Gen. Butler’s outspokenness and book on the subject might have had an impact on forming the agency, and taking the job away from the military. As he showed, retired military leaders can be hard to shut up. They have done a good job of burying his book, one that should be in every High School government class IMO.


I think Smedley was an anomaly in the history of the military. And Smedley was a Marine, a Corps of the Navy. I don’t think the Marines have Generals. Both of my parents were in the Marines during WWII.

Smedley is the most decorated military man in history. Smedley completed missions all over the world as ordered, would do anything to protect his troops, and they all had his undying loyalty. That’s why the banker/industrialists tried to recruit him in their plot to kill FDR because Smedley could get the troops/military on their side. But he refused. That was what pissed off the bankers/industrialists. And when FDR died in office, those a$$holes forced the sitting Vice President (Wilson?) to step aside and they put in their own man. That was the beginning of the end for our fledgling attempt at a democracy and help for the people like FDR initiated.

After Truman created the CIA (and publicly regretted that decision), that was the end of any chance for freedom for the people of the USA and the Banana Republics. That is the root of the assassinations of JFK, RFK, and MLK, and a whole lot more, especially in the 1960’s.

Very few know this history about FDR, Smedley, the CIA, etc. Like I’ve said many times, if we don’t know how we got here (history) there is really no way to figure out how to make a course correction collectively…Sigh…

But that doesn’t mean I and my cohorts across the US will ever stop fighting for the right of communities to govern where they live or for the right of ecosystems to have the legal right to exist and flourish.

Okay, I’ll get off my soap box now…


I agree except a few minor points, the Marine Corps absolutely has generals in their ranks, Butler was a Major General (2 stars), O-8 when he retired in 1931. He had been nominated for the Commandant position (supreme leader of the MC), but the appointment went to another officer. His history even in the MC has been scrubbed, one of the most detailed classes in Marine Corps Boot Camp is MC history, when I attended it in 1979, not a word of General Butler and his actions were spoken.


Thanks for the info about the Marine General thing and much else. My mom told me a lot of stories about Marine boot camp. It was a lot more than just rigorous. She wanted to get a posting in Hawaii in the worst possible way. She did fine with learning how to parachute out of an airplane, but not so good at diving off the side of an aircraft carrier. She never learned to dive - even into a swimming pool when I was growing up. Always belly flopped. She didn’t get to go Hawaii until I was a senior in high school in the mid '60’s. She loved it!!

And just so you know, I appreciate your informed corrections to my “recollections” - like the General thing. I’m getting so damn old I can’t remember a lot of things. Name finding is getting difficult along with much else periodically. Alzheimer’s is hereditary in my family. Late onset and slow moving. I’ve known this was coming all my life. When my grandmother, born in 1893, was in the early stages, she called it her “forgettery”. My dad and all of my aunts and uncles on my paternal side went through the same process. This kind of stuff is just another bump in the road of life that has to be planned out well to end well, which I’ve already done.

One of the reasons I love CD is the reading and commenting here. It really exercises my brain cage on a regular basis. It’s a lot better than doing crossword puzzles and stuff that I’m encouraged to do.


Thank you, Joseph Nevins. So few people recall or are aware of this history. It’s so appalling to me that I’ve not eaten a Chiquita banana for at least three decades after hearing about it. This doesn’t affect the company’s bottom line, but I like to believe that in some small measure I’m acting in solidarity with those whose lives and livelihoods were and are being destroyed by greed and indifference. Whole Foods, of all companies, does sell ethical bananas, but it’s an hour’s drive away. Oddly, the co-op grocery in the little Italian town of 2000 where I lived does provide fair-trade bananas. Oh, but you know how backward those social democratic countries are.

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Just so you know, my corrections were for informational purposes only.
Sorry to hear about the Alzheimer hereditary issue, lost my grandmother to that dam disease, wouldn’t wish it on anybody.

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Finding slave labor free bananas is really difficult. Dole is just as bad as Chiquita in this realm. And I only buy organic (OG) bananas. We have 3 markets that service the organic community and they don’t stock Dole or Chiquita. One that I frequently bought from replaced the slave labor free OG bananas with OG labeled Dole. I made a very loud stink about it with the produce manager. On my next visit a week later, the Dole bananas were gone and the good OG bananas were back. And Dole is nowhere to be seen months later.


I knew it was for informational purposes. But it is your tone that I appreciate. A lot of posters often use information to refute information that others have posted, making it clear that they are right and the other is wrong. That’s why I appreciate your approach.

As for having this damn disease, it’s harder on family and loved ones than on the person that has it. I’m in the very early stages and still know what’s going on and try not to be too annoying. But when things get really bad, I won’t have a clue about what’s happening to me. I’ll be in another world and will think I’m perfectly normal and everyone else is out of their mind.

My brother who is two years younger than me is way further along in the process than I am. He was hospitalized at the end of December and diagnosed with dementia(Altzheimer’s). He is acting out/angry and has completely lost his sense of empathy which I found out is a common symptom. He had always been very caring to others until now.

I find all this info useful so that I can recognize the onset when these symptoms start arising. I am also very open about all this because I think it is helpful to confront the stigma and fear that can be attached to any mental illness. Four years ago when I started showing symptoms, I turned to my loving neighbors and gave them a list of phone numbers to call if I started getting weirder. They all worked together about who would do what for me. My neighbor next door who I had known for over 20 years told me he wanted the job of bringing me home if I started wandering away from home. I thought that was wonderful.

It is so hard on family to have to deal with this alone. I just put all this here to encourage people to be neighborly and help each other.


I had a doctor describe to me when my Grandmother was diagnosed, that the patients mind was like the wheel on a slot machine, spinning, and unlike when you pull the lever on a real machine, they can’t get the wheel to stop and focus on a particular thought. I thought it was a pretty good analogy.

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Not sitting. The insiders had ousted VP Henry Wallace from the ticket in 1944, putting Harry Truman in the spot. Because they knew FDR might die, and no way did they want Wallace continuing and expanding the New Deal.

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I think that is a great analogy! It helps me better understand what I am now experiencing only occasionally now. Like when I have trouble with name finding. Right now the wheel only spins for a minute or two before it stops and I remember a persons name. This wheel spinning is a major problem now when I am multi tasking, which I do all the time. I can’t remember where I’m at on a task when I get back to it. This is especially troublesome as a bread baker. There are so many steps over the period of many hours or days.

Thanks for this. I now can actually visualize this process in my brain as it spins :slight_smile:

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