Monday Sept. 20, 2010 | Globalization

September 15, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Posted in Coming Up | 6 Comments

We have just been through a summer of discontent and are about to witness a continuation into the autumn and the fall elections.  US voters are unhappy with many things but at the heart of it is the economy and the economy is hurting from many things but at the heart of that are the effects of globalization.  Adrian Wooldridge is the Managing Editor of The Economist and joins us to talk about globalization.  He calls it “A Future Perfect.”  Find out why.
Guest
Adrian Wooldridge
– Management Editor of The Economist and Co-Author of A Future Perfect

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  1. How does Mr Wooldridge expect to supply the developing world with enough energy – particularly oil/gasoline – to spur further globalization when supplies are expected to wane in the coming decades?

    Both the U.S. and German military have predicted oil/gasoline shortages in the next decade or two – http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/09/study-warns-of-perilous-oil-crisis/ – and I have a very hard time seeing how the billions of people in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and so forth can consume as much energy as Western countries without hugely depleting the remaining oil supplies, massively polluting the environment even more than it already is, etc. I just don’t think enough oil exists in the world, or at least not enough that we have tapped in to yet, for the billion+ Chinese plus the billion+ Indians to live as Western/Westernized nations do.

  2. two points one question:

    1) Reagan changed the inflation formula for the US in the 80s that now may understate inflation and may have depressed salaries to the point that American workers are dramatically losing discretionary spending power.

    2) When Henry Ford was interviewed in the 20s about his corporate concept he said “I wanted to pay my workers a wage that gave them the ability to buy the product we make”. Manufacturing jobs supposedly create 6 or 7 other community jobs by their presence. is it possible that shipping off jobs overseas and driving income down is sending America into a downward spiral that we cannot reverse?

    • The mass-automaton of manufacturing has led to the loss of more manufacturing jobs than outsourcing. The USA manufactures more than it ever has, it is just that robotic machines do most of the work now instead of humans. Most of the “manufacturing” done overseas is just assembly, stuff like sewing on buttons, snapping products together, and so on.

      Plus, do you really want to insource all of that pollution which we have exported to other nations?

      • Spelling: should be “automation,” not “automaton.”

        Too many people just do not understand that now that most factories are fully-automated you just do not need very many people to work in them. One machine does the work of very many people in a fraction of the time, similar to how a bulldozer can move huge amounts of dirt in a few minutes that it would take dozens of manual laboring ditch-diggers all week to do. Furniture used to be crafted by hand, and now it is mostly built by machines in pieces with human workers just putting the pieces together. Welding of auto parts used to be done by hand but now machines do it, and so on.

        What we need to do is re-localize manufacturing, have more small scale (local/regional) sustainable manufacturing instead of continuing to communistically centralize everything under global mega-corporations. An excellent book was written during the 1930s (the Great Depression) under circumstances very similar to our own: the book contains many ideas for getting the USA back on track, namely a return to the local/regional and away from mega-corporate/global communistic centralization: we must return to decentralized power, local/regional food and manufacturing, more widespread property ownership, a return to traditional American small towns and reasonably sized cities, sustainability instead of insane and unplanned anarchic growth. The book is entitled WHO OWNS AMERICA?: A NEW DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE – http://www.isi.org/books/bookdetail.aspx?id=cb388d06-818a-43b9-83a6-17c494890e69 – everyone who cares about traditional American values should read and learn from this excellent book.

        What applies to industry is also true of modern agriculture. The current mass-agricultural system, which more resembles a factory instead of a farm, is sickening in the extreme and is not sustainable in any way. We are already seeing the first signs of a slow decline in the system due to it being overly complicated, chaotic, anarchic, inhumane, and many other negatives. We must re-localize and re-regionalize key industries and food production as soon as possible to prevent further decline and even a possible widespread ‘breakdown’ sometime in the future.

      • A couple days ago I posted a couple more comments here that haven’t come through yet – are they stuck in a comment queue or something?

  3. 1) The concept of a “level playing field” seems increasingly anachronistic. What is the new/current paradigm?

    2) Multiparty democracy (U.S) versus single party (China). Economic advantages, disadvantages?

    3) Does an economic entity have to make something, ie. a tangible good?


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