Sunday, April 19, 2009

Can America Fail?

A great article in the Wilson Quarterly by a dean of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. He describes three 'systemic failures' in Amercia (group-think, the erosion of the notion of individual repsonsibility, and blindness to the problems we cause internationally) and proposes three very specific solutions: completing the Doha round of trade talks (which are currently stalled over subsidies to American cotton farmers), imposing a $1 a gallon gas tax, and encouraging politicians to be more honest and less political about economic realities.

(of course, note the awesome first comment from Rick.)

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fantastic article! About fifteen years too late, but if someone had written such a thing then I'm sure it was shelved.

I really hope that the US can turn itself around, but I don't really expect it to. I've been quite impressed with what Obama has done internationally. However, his domestic plan to immediately move money from the people to all the major corporations seems like a Republican fantasy scenario....

an ordinary chessplayer said...

All chessplayers should be familiar with this phenomenon:

The simple thesis of this essay is that American society could also fail if it does not force itself to conceive of failure.Happens in my games all the time.

Anonymous said...

"group-think, the erosion of the notion of individual repsonsibility"

Sounds like the people who voted for Obama.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps to the deaf.

anjiaoshi said...

I want every person who ever invested in a credit default swap, every executive who shuttered a U.S. factory and transferred operations overseas, every person who tortured a prisoner for the CIA, to look me in the eye and try to talk about "individual responsibility" with a straight face.

Anonymous said...

Group-think is dead, Long live Group-think!!

Anonymous said...

I would have to agree that the University of Singapore would be the perfect place in which to observe a society that suffers from the epidemic of group think. You can't escape from it in that country.