U. S. A.  and the WORLD

Mark A. C. Karras, M.A. (Econ.), Ph.D.

A delay in resolving immigration and race issues in America spells the demise of this Nation.


"Make Hay Early in the Day"

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This Website is proud to be first to have brought forth and to clarify the concept that Culture and not Economics is the force that sustains our American Nation.
However, the adoption of the concept by only the conservative movement as seen in recent weeks is not enough.  Unless all sectors,

including central and liberal, participate, there is little hope we will be able in the future to retain the greatness and preeminence
we have heretofore enjoyed at home and in the world at large.

(Mark Athanasios C. Karras, M.A. [Econ.], Ph.D., September 2009)


    Despite what may be the intended projection to influence public perception of reality; for any society it is not economics that shapes its culture.  The opposite is true.  It is the cultural underpinning that shapes the economic life of that society.

    Regretfully,  the  constancy with which reference  is made  to the notion of a global economy  results in the obfuscation of that  which is  taking  place.  The phrase  is a mask used  to conceal the actual event and  to  foster upon public  opinion a distorted impression of what occurs.  It is a method imposed  with regularity  in order to  convince society to accept a distorted view of itself: that is, to deprive society of its ability to reason about its actual condition.

    The ultimate goal of this approach is to rob people of their precious freedom; and thus to establish control over the life of the greatest majority.  This arrangement  in essence  is not an economic but a cultural issue cast in the guise of an imperative economic event.  The economic aspect is but a  pivotal  tool toward  the achievement of  the ulterior goal.  Thus,  when  a  people surrender their  freedom by self-conviction,  the loss  is  far more devastating  than an economic loss.  All the wealth  in the world loses most of its meaning  if the holder is unable to use  it  as desired.  And,  when  society  becomes convinced that  its material prosperity, or else  lackin the absence of culture—is the only measure of  its worth;  then, that society  is a slave to its own deception and also a subject to the will of anyone who controls its economic life.

    The concept of globalization  has an exclusive economic focus that  lacks the element of the meaning in human  life.  It is an instrument  for  particular  gain within a  reduced quarter of  the world’s  population.  Its endless  pounding  in  the minds of people debases  the fundamental  conviction of  freedom.  The method leads  to  the disintegration of  the  balanced  economic function of established  societies, lowering  the  standard of living  on  a  universal scale through  the loss of  the industrial base and  intellectual mass.  The resulting economic deterioration by the imposition of  ill-apportioned international  trade activities produces  the ultimate desired result;  which is,  universal control of a culturally emaciated  world population.  This leads to the understanding that it is not the world population who owns the global economy;  it is instead the global economy that owns the world population.  Thus, the central questions become: Where does the final locus of control lie? Is such control as dispersed as we are led to believe?

    On  the other hand, society  itself  carries responsibility  to foreclose on the  intrusion imposed upon it.  That is, by allowing a deterioration  or  collapse of ethical and moral integrity,  it opens  the door to  the abuser  who  enters under the pretext of help and accommodation in support of  permissiveness.  The activity  becomes an  accelerating  downward  spiral to the ultimate  weakening and vanishment of social integrity and will—unable to claim even the minimum of a civilized economic standard.

    It must be remembered that the US was heralded to become a great "service economy." That scheme with its defunct and conveniently forgotten term paved the way for the second stage, the "global economy"; which in turn is being used to conceal the third but real stage, the "servant economy"a condition of increasing subordination to indebtedness and dependence on others for major material and financial needs of this Nation

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        Capitalism is understood as an economic system. Yet, capitalism is also the manifestation of the instinctive or natural human tendency toward self-interest, initiative, independence, and self-preservation. Such behavior is evident in all animal life and also in what concerns survival it exists in plant life.


        On the other hand, social affiliation and community emerge only as subsidiary needs that serve to relieve the pressing demands of capitalism. This complementary function to capitalism is socialism.


        Capitalism is thus an instinctive way of life; whereas socialism is a provisional solution to a need. In the case of a capitalist system, the use of socialist methods only modify it—and the system remains capitalistic. However, in the case of socialism, when capitalist methods are applied, the system is transformed to capitalism. Furthermore, socialism by itself is not sustainable as it is only complementary to capitalism.        


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Democracy and Republic:
An Analysis  ~


The existence of culture is not spontaneous.
It is the product of creativity and vigilance of society,
which results in an enduring interaction between
that culture and that society.
Culture, therefore, may become manipulated for
the better or for the worse.
Congress has direct responsibility on the issue of integrity in the United States.

    The worth of a civilization is in part  measured by its resistance to stagnation and by its threshold of tolerance for change and its ability to absorb extraneous influences that contribute to its durability and evolution.

Western Civilization displays the above characteristics, albeit, included in its makeup as part of human behavior, exists the not so infrequent element of error.  Considered in this context, the continuity of Western thought and way of life are perceived as an uninterrupted stream of behavior with definable roots in the Hellenistic, Hebraic, and Roman past, and with considerable influence from the Arab, Asian, and also African quarters.

The more evident signs of this amalgamation were manifested through Alexander the Great, followed by the Roman influence and later by Byzantium -- an evolutionary  mixture of Hellenistic and Roman identity.  The inevitable outcome was the  continuation of institutionalized behavior.  The populations grew and expanded westward, resulting in what is now in the Western Hemisphere.

The latter bears resemblance to its most recent significant predecessor, namely, Byzantium.  Europe was itself the child of that previous larger world.  The feudalistic and regal systems of Europe were  a deliberate imitation of a perceived enviable system of governance that had begun with Constantine the Great and evolved through his successors.   At this point, however, the magnificent child of the West adopts an innovative form to govern itself:

Its essence remains intact with all the identifiable characteristics of its heredity.  Although it moves forward in full strength as the New Byzantium in the New World, it attempts a bold modification in its form of government.   It retains the principal desire for human freedom, yet institutes order in the implementation of that freedom.  In other words, it salvages its predilection for democracy, while at the same time it provides against the propensity for a "free for all" on the pretext of that democracy.

Most eminent in this new arrangement is the United State of America with its founding of the Republic and with its radiating influence throughout the Western Hemisphere [it appears diminishing to characterize the American model of government as a mere "experiment," unique as it may be.  It was a full-fledged design engineered by serious and competent visionaries on the strength of their accumulated combined experience and study].  What is significant, however, is the type of republic that it established.


    The word democracy describes a concept that is absolute.  Nothing can be appended to the word to qualify its nature further.  The etymology of the word is clear: the Greek word "demos" means "the people" and "kratos "(-cracy) means "rule" (suggestive of power). The two words combine to render the singular message, "power of the people."  There exist no gradations or shades of democracy.  Due to its fundamental meaning, however, democracy as a word and as a concept may itself be a qualifier of other words or concepts.  It is redundant to use the term "representative democracy" because democracy is by its own nature representative.  Danger underlies inaccurate verbiage in that it subordinates the concept of democracy to the concept of representation.  This dilutes the power of the people as the primary source of authority: It tends to exaggerate the power entrusted in the representatives of the people instead of strengthening the people's authority the representatives are delegated to serve.

The basis of assignment of public servants to any post, elected or appointed, is the power of the people.  This function is conducted by democratic means, which renders effective the social and political system in the United States of America.  Furthermore, the decisions reached by the representatives of the power of the people are reached by democratic means of deliberation and voting.  This further accentuates the presence of democracy in the Nation.  The Constitution of the United States of America begins with the words, "We the People . . . ."  It does not say, "we the representatives of the people."


    The United States of America is based on a democracy that uses a specific governing mechanism to make the system work.  Democracy itself as a governing method in a population of millions is a physical impossibility -- excepting Divine intervention.  No governing system exists, even by engaging the highest technology, that can analyze, evaluate, and coordinate the thoughts and wishes of each and every individual.  The American method provides for this inadequacy by delegating to a reduced number of persons the task of making the desired decisions.  The method involved is the establishment of the Republic.

Unlike a democracy, however, a republic, as both a concept and a word, can be  enhanced through other qualifying concepts and words.*  There are variations in the types of republics that may exist. The American system may be described with accuracy as a Democratic Republic.  The qualifier in this case is the word democratic.  It may also be referenced as a Constitutional Republic—a redundancy, since a republic is a device set forth by a ruling instrument.  Other alternatives that may exist are: Oligarchic Republic or  representative government whose delegates are appointed by the few who control the majority of the people; Plutocratic Republic whose delegates are appointed by the wealthy; Autocratic Republic whose delegates are appointed by one person; Technocratic  or Bureaucratic Republic whose delegates are the work of special power interests entrenched in government; and, so forth.

It is in this area that the American system is sensitive: Citizens are under constant obligation to monitor and control their delegated representatives (both elected and appointed) in order to retain the strength, effectiveness, and purity of their system of government.  A democracy must be strong in order for a republic to be strong.  To discredit democracy is to exaggerate the true function of a republicin order to inflate the significance of the delegated servants of government.  This, in time, tends to obscure the distinction between the authority of government and of those who serve that authority, which in actual terms rests in the power of the people. 



It is vague and inadequate to identify a nation such as the United States of America as only a Republic: It is always necessary to specify the type of republic that is involved.  The United States has adopted what appears to be the optimum  system of a Democratic Republic.  A deviation can downgrade the system to a lower level of governance of an oligarchic, then plutocratic, and soon thereafter of an autocratic republic.  The integrity of the system, therefore, is crucial in the maintenance of the cultural setting within which the Republic survives.  

The setting in this instance is the inherited continuity of Western Civilization evolved from the Old World in its maximum outreach to the New World or NEW BYZANTIUM.  Many aspects of this continuing Civilization are present and active to this day, including the tendency to welcome and to assimilate contributions of other cultures and systems.  It is unreasonable, therefore, for some cultures to advocate the destruction of the Western world, whereas they too  have a stake in it and have the chance to continue to do so.

*Similar to an oxymoron, often grounded in allegory but never in logic, the notion of Constitutional Democracy is also illogical (cf., bitter sweetness).

Democracy is a state of being and, as characterized above, absolute in nature: It is not a devised method of governance but rather a tendency toward which society leans in the collective struggle of individual wills.  On the other hand, a constitutional arrangement is a specific design created by the will or power of the people (i.e., democracy) for the purpose of establishing a form of government.

It is not possible for the created to give existence to the creator.  Therefore, democracy—a creative absolute, fundamental and inimitable in nature—can not be compared or qualified as being of a certain type.  That which can be qualified is the type of governance the democracy (i.e., the will or power of the people) has created.

                                                                                                                                                              By: Mark Athanasios C. Karras, Ph.D. (May, 2004)

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Expansion of Western Civilization: from Constantine the Great to Constantinople and Byzantium and onward to America

 We are sincerely pleased you have come to visit our Site and we extend to you our warmest greeting in the highest tradition of BYZANTIUM.  Our Principal goal is to impart to you heretofore intentionally little known facts about BYZANTIUM as the foundation of Western Civilization.  We will avoid knowingly withholding the truth as an aim to social disorientation.  Practice of historical deception must cease.  We hope that you will enjoy our contribution to the fullest.  Welcome.
Constantine the Great began his eventful climb in York, England and reached the apex of his achievement in Constantinople, the City that he founded and named after himself (Constantine+Polis [city] =Constantinople).  By means of these pages, our readers travel through time, touching upon the early periods, including that of Constantine, of historical Constantinople, and of Hagia Sophia—the nexus of the Christian world—to arrive at places and events of our present day.  Our readers reach the outermost limit to which both Eastern and Western Christian groups expanded, bringing forth the flower of Western Civilization.  That limit is the Western Hemisphere as a whole, and in particular the coast of California near San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge where the two groups converged  as they approached from the North and from the South.