Is The World Abandoning The U.S. Economy?
Brandon Smith, Contributor
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Go to any university, any center of equities trade, any meeting place for financial academia, any fiscal think tank, and they will tell you without the slightest hint of doubt in their eyes that the U.S. economy is essential to the survival of the world.
To even broach the possibility that the U.S. could be dropped or replaced as the central pillar of trade on the planet is greeted with sneers and even anger. But let’s set aside what we think (or what we assume) we know about the American financial juggernaut and consider the sordid history of the money powerhouse myth.
Germany, especially in the decade leading up to WWI, was an industrial giant, rivaling Britain in the production of raw commodities like steel, as well as the banking envy of the world. I’m sure very few economists of the era would have given any credence to the idea that the German foundation would in the near future collapse into hyperinflationary ruin. However, that is exactly what it did. In the span of 10 to 15 years, Germany was completely supplanted as the shining beacon of economic prosperity, never to return to a similar glory.
The British Empire from WWII up until the late 1950s was the primary force in the global trade of oil, and the pound-sterling was dominant in the export and import of raw petroleum between nations. Extreme debt obligations and draining interventions in the Middle East set Britain on the path to currency devaluation, and the loss of its coveted reserve status.
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