A People’s History of the United States contains few symbols, since it’s a work of nonfiction. One interesting exception to the rule comes in Chapter Twenty, when Zinn discusses the Trilateral Commission, a 1973 meeting of political leaders from Japan, the U.S., and Western Europe. The Trilateral Commission brought leaders together to discuss the need to control their own populations and strengthen corporate interests. Thus, the Trilateral Commission is a powerful symbol of the Establishment: the alliance between the most powerful intellectuals, politicians, and businessmen, designed to help them maintain their power.
The Trilateral Commission Quotes in A People’s History of the United States
The Trilateral Commission apparently saw itself as helping to create the necessary international links for the new multinational economy. Its members came from the highest circles of politics, business, and the media in Western Europe, Japan, and the United States. They were from Chase Manhattan, Lehman Brothers, Bank of America, Banque de Paris, Lloyd's of London, Bank of Tokyo, etc. Oil, steel, auto, aeronautic, and electric industries were represented. Other members were from Time magazine, the Washington Post, the Columbia Broadcasting System, Die Zeit, the Japan Times, The Economist of London, and more.