Thursday, June 1, 2017

What ails the U S United States

I used to very vividly and with keenness watch a TV serial on History Channel titled "The History of the US" and came to know much about this country which I hither-to didnt. Some where starting with the advent of the settlers step by step through the ages to the modern day United states it said it all...the various mile stones through which the community emerged into a country to become a very powerful economy with a distinct blend and spirit to be duplicated as a model by various economies. If I were to ever use the word Neo-Economy it would be befitting to be the one the United States created and endured during the past 150 years. What makes the United States is largely the purposeful union of states themselves united by a spirit of coherence and a common bedrock of enduring hardships and looking at the future with optimism and faith and when such a combination is in some kind of test by time it slowly solidifies as a common cult to be held on with conviction that bulldozes any apparent impediment with lethal force.

There are a few things unique about America as a country. Point 1 its inventive spirit ..point 2 its  social composition consisting of people  from many parts of the globe....Point 3 its history that has in it entrenched a saga of two wars namely the war for independence and the civil war ...point 4 its geography of being in an isolated continent away from the bulk  land mass of Eurasia ....and above all a faith system that somewhere formed the crux and possibly brought into the country by the settlers.

Let me dwell upon the points mentioned above in some detail. The inventive spirit is transperent in the many technological inventions that took birth in the United States ..the telephone . the electric bulb...the aeroplane to name a few  and not to forget the modern day computer and the internet...and not to forget methodologies of mass production and the atom bomb. Driven deep in the culture of this country is a quest for knowledge and an optimism to develop new things and an environment in part that un-shakles individuals into such effort.

Secondly the US is an embodiment of a classic example of what a community can become on leveraging the skills of people from very different genetic and ethnic backgrounds not that such compositions were not beset by problems but successively overcoming such bottlenecks time and again and channelising them for  betterment. Each community brings with them certain special talents which when combines with each other what we have is explosive growth of some kind unlike a country which might be composed of a certain sect of people work with one or few skill sets. 

America had wars aplenty starting with wars with the local Indians to the American war of Independence to the civil war barely 150 years ago which in my view-point gave the country a first hand insight of how to prepare oneself for war and what the realities were . Not that other societies and countries did not have such the war theater was time and again well within their soil and more often than not the enemy was within themselves and the wars were closely fought and not one sided which means every strategy under the belt had to be carefully examined and implemented for advantage. America knew too well what it meant to be at war not just the fighting , the logistics, war time manufacturing and the general uncertainities and wrath. The second world war tilts in favour of the Allies with the advent of America into the war and all the experience garnered by the country over the past came handy in their mission and operation in Europe against Germany.

Point 4  america has an unique geography a large country that stretches from one ocean to the other and a predominantly cold climate susceptible to natural disaster now and then. But America all through enjoyed a military advantage of the impossibility of a terrestrial invasion by any enemy.....being fortified by the sea on both sides. this is some kind of a natural defense and an advantage as inflicting collateral damage for any enemy would be an impossibility.

The strength of America does not essentially ly in economic prowess but in a faith system largely that comes from the roots from whence it came  and every time it was put to test it stood the test of time. This Faith system could be seen as a combination  of a conviction and optimism  and with  religious ideals running somewhere beneath. This system drew the country and its people on track every time it went astray and acted as a lighthouse to a wandering ship... a self correcting mechanism to which the country turned when in some kind of quandry. Slavery was not abolished by anyone external to the country but by some one from within who saw a large deviation from the ideals on which the society was constituted to what was in vogue.

Why have I titled this write-up as 'What Ails the United States"?  Is there something that is really haywire or intimidating..The answer may be No but still looking at things and the hearsay it appears that the United States somewhere needs to re-orient itself once more in relation to world forces and finds itself running an economy short of the bounty repeatedly under a cloud of varying perceptions and aspirations.

At the rock bottom let us analyze the events of the past several decades. The first half of the bygone century was a testing field for the economy of the US and with the Second World War thrust on it found herself as a country deeply embedded in war effort and for a preponderant majority of time a haven for war time manufacturing that spurred the economy and the country. The next mile stone if one might say are the events in Germany which triggers the cold war and much of the focus and thrust of American foreign policy dwell ed on the Cold war. The Soviet Union  and the United States the single dominant powers that overwhelmed Germany were at loggerheads about what had to be done with the fallen Germany and landed up dividing it and sowing the seeds in the bargain for a long drawn conflict lasting for more than four decades which would demand American intervention into many parts of the world to keep the soviets under check and it appears the USA was paranoid of the Soviet Union ;in the process  infringing into global territories made alliances and partnerships there upon which were short lived and for immediate purposes- the dissolution of which sometimes unilateral left a trail of opponents who became enemies over a period of time . They were helpless at one point of time but emerged formidable over a course of time. With the collapse of the cold war which was unexpected the the economic patterns of the globe change as many technologies developed during the Cold War and its fears catapulted by default into the common domain changing once and for all the rules of World polity.

We see a flattenning of the world in modern times and the emergence of a level playing feild largely created by technological inventions and momentum. Some where the very factors of the past that were of significant advantage for the USA have somewhere not been productive as they once were. Previously lesser the population of a country the better the economic indices would be was a beleif but in the present day scenario of low cost high connectivity it translates into weak local markets vis-a-vis a populated country. A country today with higher population and enlivened with advanced technologies operating at low costs has a formidable economic formula under its belt and gallops much faster into progress as other economies of the world look stalemated.

Let me give an analogy.  Take a part of the sea where there is fishing  and  there is a big ship fishing using modern technologies  and a myriad of small  motor boats fishing using less advanced technologies. The end result of such a scenario is that the big ship would have  a surfeit of catch and the smaller boats though not well off but still surviving the environment and able to barely meet economic demands of survival.The economics of the big ship work too well and do so repeatedly more than offsetting economic equations of survival. Think of another situation where all the motor boats have access to advanced technologies of fishing and the result would be drastic for the big ship over time as smaller motor  boats are making a catch ten times more than before and communication technologies help these motor boats co-apt with each other. What ensues is a unhealthy situation for the big ship operating in the same waters as they see a downward trend and the ship being big is less nimble and at the same time having economic overheads owing to its size increasingly tends to a survival problem and has to create strategies to counter the down turn. What is happening is world affairs is all too similar.  The smaller motor boats are having an unprecedented catch and need more and more manpower to pursue its activities and a reverse happening within the precincts of the larger ship and the situation intensifying with time.

What can the President of the United States do today?  They say "Man would make a difference on a job"....but the President of the  United States no matter who he is as a person..a performer or reformer or transformer has his hands full with a few problems and can take some immediate measures but the large scale changes if any would only result in the long term depending on what strategic measures he might initiate to align the country in a new global setting.

What ails the United States ?  I dont know for sure but i can see situations that might be the cause of ailment.

Firstly I see the near collapse of the American Auto sector which was once a monopoly player and the sector loosing steadily to the Japanese first within the American markets itself and the world markets ther upon. Auto sector is large scale employer and generator of profits. Steady downslide in this sector has to be arrested which means some kinds on newer forms of working cultures must be developed.

Secondly I see the immigration policies of the United States doing it untold harm. In the 1920's anyone could walk into the country and many did and within this larger crowd were few men who would make largescale positive influences on the multitude through their actions. Henry Ford for example..a Quadricyle driven through Detroit ends up being a big manufacturing sector. This doesn't exist today. On the contrary educated people with formal qualifications make an entry and their contributions are good but not path braking. The richest man today I am told is in Mexico. Henry Fords' and Andrew Carneiges' of the world are staying back in their countries and making contributions of some larger form. In some way this must be remedied ..i dont know how..but it should be.

Thirdly the country carries with it the wages of the cold war which is manifested today in continuous military engagements at few pockets in the world and might be draining attention and expenditure. These ventures might need specialized management and monitoring.

America has an internal problem or concern in the form of   a poor concentration of population. It appears to me a large geographical area with less population and not a healthy trend in the present global environment. Countries with larger populations today seem to be reaping internal economic rewards with lesser necessity to look outwards. The unification of Europe can be seen as an effort to improve population economics of the zone. China has it as a birthright and India has it too. I am somewhere talking about  population and density of population. China as a country I presume has a lesser density of population compared to India and density of population being higher somewhere creates economic security and advantage.

I believe a Head of state must be at least 55 years of age and on getting two terms would be roughly 65 years when he demits office an ideal age range where the incumbent had adequate experience and brings an average of 30 years of experience when he assumes office. Any one younger would carry some kind of a risk factor when he operates from high offices. This is my personal view which may not be entirely with sound standing but an issue that might have significance in the affairs of a state.

Well  I just thought of putting forth ideas or reactions to the happenings around the world at large and no matter in which part of the world one is day to day problems of humanity are the same and increasing with time this globe is becoming an "United States" where the states of the world are keen on partnering with each other to assuage their problems and that of their citizens and every inhabitant of this planet as of now has something to celebrate.

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