Is This The End of the American Century?

This site features updates, analysis, discussion and comments related to the theme of my book published by Rowman & Littlefield in 2008 (hardbound) and 2009 (paperbound).

The Book

The End of the American Century documents the interrelated dimensions of American social, economic, political and international decline, marking the end of a period of economic affluence and world dominance that began with World War II. The war on terror and the Iraq War exacerbated American domestic weakness and malaise, and its image and stature in the world community. Dynamic economic and political powers like China and the European Union are steadily challenging and eroding US global influence. This global shift will require substantial adjustments for U.S. citizens and leaders alike.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"Rise of the Rest" Youtube Video

A cute and striking 5-minute Youtube video, "The Rise of the Rest," is produced by the Futures Group, and based on the phrase and data from Fareed Zakaria's The Post-American World.

The video illustrates some of the global trends favoring the emergence of China, India and other countries as major economic and political forces in the world. Much of this information is also in my own book The End of the American Century, though there are two important differences in my approach and the one in this video.

First, the video often uses projections of trends into the next decade or two--for example seeing the Chinese economy eventually surpassing that of the U.S. While this may turn out to be true, projections into the future are, of course, highly speculative. The recent financial collapse in the U.S., which has become a global crisis as well, illustrates how quickly such projections can turn sour. My book mostly uses trend data up to the present, to demonstrate changes that have already taken place.

A second difference (between this video and me; and between Zakaria and me) is that I focus much more attention on the declining fortunes of the U.S. Zakaria says his book is not about the decline of the U.S., but about the "rise of the rest." My book is about both. Over the last two decades, the U.S. has declined in many ways--the economy, education, health care, infrastructure, equality, and others. It is the combination of U.S. decline and the rise of the rest that is so quickly and dramatically changing the face of the globe.

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