The world is changing like never before. Globalization is affecting every aspect of peoples’ lives around the world. It affects culture, economics, and even politics. We face new challenges and old challenges dressed up in new clothes. Most countries have benefited enormously from this period of economic expansion. But likewise, as economies become more intertwined, we find that they can also become more vulnerable to unexpected shifts and new forms of opaqueness. This isn’t a reason to turn away from globalization, but it is a reason to be vigilant.
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Of course, with current economic events shaking the world economy, we begin to see some of the potential negative effects of globalization. The problems point to one of the serious drawbacks of globalization: when you open your economy up to the other economies of the world you can get very rich as long as they do well—but you also become very vulnerable to their problems too.
It’s important to ask the question, What is power? Many suggest it is purely military force. The US is the lone power in the world with the ability to conduct expeditionary warfare on multiple fronts across the globe whenever it wants to. As was demonstrated in the Balkans in the 1990s, Europeans aren’t able to project a credible military force even within Europe. Therefore the Europeans resort to the only thing they have for managing international conflicts, international institutions such as the UN. The success of European integration and solving the "German problem" has led a lot of Europeans to believe that they live in a Kantian paradise where international institutions can banish war forever. Americans have a different historical reality, and think of the world as a Hobbesian jungle where hard power rules. All of this I agree with. However, America should also look at its financial system and not just its military power if it wants to remain a superpower forever.
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