Saturday, March 14, 2009

New age coming as US goes down

Global mess gives birth to new era
National Post: 'Much of the rest of the world sees the current global financial crisis simultaneously as: a) America's fault; b) a very big deal and c) worthy of a rethinking of the basic assumptions of US-style capitalism. But the United States doesn't appear to recognize how much anger and blame is being cast its way,' says Douglas Rediker, a former investment banker who is now director of the Global Strategic Finance Initiative at the New America Foundation in Washington.

'The financial crisis created an ideological deficit, where even our closest allies in Europe, not to mention other countries with whom our relationship is more complex, like Russia, China and the Gulf states, are re-thinking the balance between social values and market-based economies,' he adds.

'[It has] opened the door for others to question not only whether the United States is up to the task of driving and policing the world's financial systems. Perhaps it also extends to a broader question about US leadership, international alliances and the world order.'

James Laxer: The age that ended in the autumn of 2008 was the American-centred age of globalization. That age had been a long time in the making. It had taken shape as a consequence of the interactions of forces of different durations. 

A central narrative in its construction was capitalism, technology and science. Another narrative, closely associated with the first, was the rise of the United States and the American Empire to the zenith of global power, an achievement fully realized in the decades following the Second World War, and consummated in triumph with the collapse of the Soviet Union and its empire between 1989 and 1991. A third narrative, more limited in time, was the methods and practices of capitalism over the past thirty years, a time of global markets, de-regulation, and neo-liberal ideology...

We need new bearings to cope with a new world. Then we can rid ourselves of the political leadership we have had so we can construct a new and sustainable Canadian economy, with different rules about the distribution of rewards that can endure in a new age.
Image source here.