America-- Sliding Down A Slippery Slope or Free Falling?

"The United States is living like parasites off the global economy and their monopoly of the dollar."

Vladamir Putin- August 1, 2011--
says the man worth 40 billion dollars from peddling political influence, bribes, and taking controlling stakes in Russian companies, simply, because he has can ...-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
As I promised a follow up to the US financial debacle going on right now, I want to discuss why the US is slipping from it's position of King Of The Hill, both how we got to the top of the mountain, and why we are losing our grasp of the peak.
I'll also be addressing Mr. Vladamir.

Onto The Show ...
While Europe was largely settled in the 1800's, the US was still largely vast swaths of uncharted territory. While Europeans of two centuries ago worked like slaves to keep their meager salaries, owners of American businesses couldn't put a complete stranglehold on the labor market, because if conditions became bad enough, workers could always try their luck and move West. With the exception of ... slaves.

With immense natural resources, jaw dropping terrain, and founders with foresight enough to draft one of the most beautiful and long lasting documents ever written, the US Constitution, whose words created a structure of relative stability and certainty while European monarchies fell one after another, whose content has been modeled by much of the developed world, America became, and still largely is, the land of dreams and opportunity.

A Brief History
The year, 1919-
Germany is forced to repay for damages this pacificist  aggressor country created during World War I, causing chaos and hyper-inflation, setting the rise of Hitler.

1939- Germany attends an international dinner and, before the appetizer, pounds its fist on the table, announcing that they intend on bringing to the world their wealth of warmth and good humor. Of course, when someone points out that they have none of these attributes, they get a tad testy and, in keeping in accordance to German tradition, decide to start World War II instead.
(Historical fact- here is the joke Germany lead off with at the dinner table, which in a national poll, is still to this day voted the funniest joke any German has come up with-- "A sausage maker, goes to the store, and buys a vegetable!")

1945-
Europe: Bombed to smithereens, populations decimated, Iron Curtain descends and dismantles the economies of previously capitalistic countries as far west as Eastern Germany.
America- Unscathed, victors, heroes to the rest of the world.

Now rather than punish the Germans and Japs as noted took place after WWI, forward thinking America helps rebuild these two nations, benefiting the world economy, growing in stature America's already lustrous image, with the US of A gaining wealth and power accordingly.
So while Western Europe rebuilt from destruction, and whole populations in the East were stymied by Utopian Communism, America emerged as the world's leader and protector, and a country where innovation was rewarded disproportionately.

Publicly Funded Research + the Brain Drain
And why was America the place of innovation?

#1 The government was investing a ton of money in publicly funded scientific research, which lead to technology for the cell phone, amongst numerous other scientific advances. Military research helped create the first version of the Internet, originally intended to keep a permanent line open between the President and Russian premiere to reduce the possibility of nuclear war.
(Side note: which country would you rather see obtain a nuke- Iran or Germany? Sorry, I have a little Auschwitz residue left over in my blood stream.)

#2- The Brain Drain
I submit to you an example from my personal life, my Dad.
My father is a MIT physicist/engineer who has worked in such a capacity for Hewlett Packard since I was very young, helping CREATE new products with his cutting edge research and brilliant mind. From- Eastern Euopean, whose governments made it all but impossible for him to stay. Head west young man- to America.

How The Average American Benefits
Instead of brains like my Dad getting together in a company, and creating innovative/life enhancing products in their own country, where were they developed? The US of A.
What about the Brins, two highly educated mathematicians who emigrated to America from the Soviet Union with their son Sergei when he was six. Sergei founded Google.
You don't think the average American benefits from the added high-paying jobs these innovations brought us? From the added tax revenue, to the generous tips in restaurants, to the average Joe Schmoe that could earn good commissions as a car salesman because of the wealth CREATED (and i will discuss this word later) at the top of the brain chain. How about the domestic help which flocked here from Latin America to make unheard of money (for them) and provide a better life for their children?

Does it make sense that Joe Sixpack can still get a great paying job? Simply because he lives in America baby.
Today

The pinnacle of recent US height and power was the year 2000 with the Internet (invented by America) having just been adopted by the general public, streamlining operations, and CREATING REAL wealth (in addition to the .com bubble) The Clinton Administration not only had a balanced budget, but a surplus of revenue, unemployment was very low, and firms were scrambling to gain a footing online ... Then America 'elected' George W Bush ....
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Tomorrow I will send out a post of what's up today, along with a discussion of why America is slipping down a much more vertical slope ...

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