Trudy Rubin, writing in the Philadephia Inquirer, described changes at the Davos World Economic Forum that suggest America’s economic dominance has come to an abrupt conclusion. Its high-tech bubble has burst, deficits are common, the housing market has collapsed and US banks continually need injections of money from all parts of the world. Bush militlary policies have absorbed trillions of dollars away from productive use in the nation and squandered the money by having resources expended– and wasted– in Iraq and Afghanistan. “The unipolar American moment is deemed over,” says Rubin, “in part a casualty of the Bush administration’s political and economic policies, in large part the result of global economic changes that are shifting wealth eslewhere.” At the meeting, Klaus Schwab suggested onstage to Condoleezza Rice, that America was a piano and the world the orchestra. Schwab asked if the piano and the orchestra could play together in harmony.
The current housing /debt/banking crisis in America comes at a time when the nation is massively in debt to China and oil-rich countries like Russia and nations in the Arab Gulf. Many experts believe by 2050, the world’s super economic powers will be China, the United States and Japan in that order, but this prediction may not take into account the growing economic power of the European Union.
There is still one more question– will a new president be able to redirect America’s destiny by shifting priorities from military to economic? Can the United States afford to spend trillions on wars in Iraq or Afghanistan or tomorrow in Pakistan? Has there come a time to call a halt on military thrusts and focus on economic development within this nation. Unfortunately, none of the current crop of candidates appears willing to cast the future of America in long term considerations. Can America continue its present path without suffering terrible economic consequences down the road?