Tuesday, November 23, 2010

American Exceptionalism from Afar

From the Economist in London excerpted in the Monitor, “America has for more going for it than its current mood suggests,” states the editorial. “It is still the most innovative economy on earth, the place where the world’s greatest universities meet the world’s deepest pockets…. It has a flexible and hard working labor force. Its ultra-low bond yields are a sign that the world’s investors still think it a good long-term bet. The most enterprising individuals on earth still clamor to come to America. And it still has a talented president who can surely do better than he has thus far.” How’s that for American Exceptionalism from afar?

A lot of superlatives there, many of them true – for now. We can continue this if we see ourselves clearly, address what needs addressing and stop kidding ourselves. A holistic, integrated, systematic approach is needed. Immigration, health care, energy, tax structure and full employment are not as separate as they seem. Keeping them in silos, walled off from each other, taking gradual, incremental steps is the old, traditional way of doing things. We can’t afford that anymore. Some central convening point is necessary to focus and pull our efforts together for the benefit of the entire nation.

Selfish special interests seemingly unconcerned about the nation or killing the goose that lays the golden egg, thrive on the traditional incremental silo approach. Divide and conquer! It worked for Caesar and every leader since. It’s working now. Have you heard that more than half of Congress are multi-millionaires. How’d they get that way? Did they abuse their positions? Sell out the nation for special interest support?

As the Economist pointed out, we’ve got a lot going for us. Let’s pull together, adopt a holistic, integrated, systematic approach, assert ourselves, pay attention to the flow of money and build a world that works for everyone and everything.

No comments:

Post a Comment