SYNOPSIS

It is very popular for the press and TV pundits to pick a particular culprit responsible for our weakened economy, weak dollar, unemployment, decreasing standard of living, federal debt, personal debt and our weakening international stature. The culprit may be former President Bush, President Obama, the chairmen of the Federal Reserve, unions, corporate greed, terrorists, or India and China. As geoeconomist Ronald R. Pollina, Ph.D., documents in this hard-hitting book, a combination of special interest groups and their army of money-peddling lobbyists, along with government mismanagement of business and the economy by both parties, have betrayed the American people for last twenty years.

In 1968, there were sixty-two lobbyists in Washington; today there are thirty-four thousand, outnumbering members of Congress and their staffers two-to-one. By 2008, these lobbyists were spending approximately $8.9 million for influence per day. Few, if any, of these lobbyists represent the majority of Americans in the middle- class. Given these statistics, it’s not surprising the real median household income in America has stagnated for over a decade.

Politically mismanaged globalization has brought America into an international economic war that is radically changing the American way of life in terms of our standard of living, our security and the lives of our children. Americans are finding that they cannot save any money for emergencies or send their children to college. Their children are not being educated for the jobs of the future, assuming that those jobs will even be available for them. These trends began long before the beginning of the recent recession.

During the housing boom that kicked off this century, middle-class Americans, no longer able to improve their earning power, refinanced their homes–pulling out billions of dollars in equity to protect a lifestyle they could no longer afford. Turning their homes into ATMs and increasing their credit card debt, most middle-class Americans are now paying interest on their groceries. The middle-class is increasingly mortgaging their futures, making the possibility of retirement or paying for emergencies impossible. After 20 years of deregulation in the lending industry, homeowners are three and a half times more likely to lose their homes to foreclosure than a generation ago.

Our nation became a superpower because we invested in manufacturing, research and development. We are rapidly becoming a nation that makes nothing, and our companies now spend more on lawsuits than research and development. The U.S. now has the largest national and personal debt of any nation. We have shored up our economy with low-interest rates financed by countries like China that need us as a marketplace for their products.

As these countries’ economies and markets grow, they will no longer need to shore up our economy by buying our bonds. We are deluding ourselves if we believe that we have not been impacted already, both socially and economically, or that our government, along with American ingenuity and tenacity, will correct for any losses. The recession that started in 2007 has been long and deep because we no longer have the strong economic engine of manufacturing, or the scientific and technological leadership we once had. The jobs we lost as a result of the recession are not likely to be reintroduced into our economy at the end of the recession. Companies will continue to add jobs where their principle growth markets are, where capable labor is readily available, taxes are considerably lower and profits can be maximized.

Our generous but disastrous free trade policies are leading the U.S. towards a future of diminished economic and political power that leaves us vulnerable to external forces. Unnecessary agricultural subsidies, along with pork-barrel spending, have misdirected needed resources. We have a tax code that encourages companies to move offshore and, unlike many advanced nations that have reduced corporate taxes to make themselves more able to compete with low labor-cost countries, the U.S. has maintained a tax system with the highest corporate taxes in the world. We regulate certain industries to the point that we drive them offshore, while we de-regulate others, allowing them to drive personal and corporate bankruptcies to record highs. What is happening to us is not beyond our control, but rather has been caused in large part by poor leadership, both Democratic and Republican.

There is little doubt that the balance of power is shifting away from the U.S. to the East, as the economies of China and India evolve. These two countries are not complimentary economies, growing in unison with the U.S., but rather at the expense of the U.S. economy. The governments of China and India have a vision for achieving economic, political and military power. While these countries are creating pro-business environments, our federal and state governments create road blocks to economic development. Federal and state governments have the resources, but not the will, to keep Americans employed in high-paying 21st Century jobs.

In Selling Out a Superpower, recommendations are made that could considerably slow the downward spiral if it were only possible to find political leaders with the backbone to implement them. Case studies are given for companies that had to decide whether to offshore or remain in the U.S. How and why decisions were made, and the impact on the companies and the communities in which they were located are examined.

Manufacturing, professional, scientific, technical service and corporate management jobs are leaving the U.S. at a rate that is higher than the nation’s workforce growth. We won two World Wars and the Cold War because we out-produced and invested more in research and development than our enemies, and we had the leadership, knowledge, capability and will to do it.

 
  PURCHASE SELLING OUT A SUPERPOWER HERE   Members of Congress must stop selling out to special interests in return for campaign financing (a form of indentured servitude at best and bribery at worst) and start defending the public interest.   PURCHASE SELLING OUT A SUPERPOWER HERE   For many Americans, their last job was the best job they, and likely their children, will ever have.   PURCHASE SELLING OUT A SUPERPOWER HERE   Throughout most of the twentieth century, China and India were asleep, and as they awoke, the United States fell asleep.   PURCHASE SELLING OUT A SUPERPOWER HERE   The recession has become a very convenient excuse for job loss. The fact is that the nation was well on its way to losing jobs critical to our economic growth and prosperity well before the beginning of the recession.   PURCHASE SELLING OUT A SUPERPOWER HERE   Between 1990 and 2011, the national debt increased an astounding 285 percent and the gross national debt increased 330 percent. For either Republicans or Democrats to claim that their party is fiscally responsible is simply not true and nothing more than campaign rhetoric.
 
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