We may, or may not, be living through The Age of Aquarius but since astrological ages last on average about 2,150 years it doesn’t matter very much.
More relevant to Americans is the duration of The Age of America which doesn’t refer to our nation’s chronological age but to that period of world history when the United States dominated the world stage. Past tense is apropos since the Age of America is coming to a close.
Liberal commentators, who philosophically if not in actuality resent that dominance, may be applauding the recent forecast issued by the International Monetary Fund that China’s economy will reach and surpass that of the U.S. within five years but most Americans will experience a sense of loss, a feeling of defeat and even grief for the end of greatness at the IMF announcement.
On the other hand, conservative observers, ever-confident in that greatness, are disputing the IMF’s opinion on various bases, most often pointing to the inherent illusory quality of the explosive growth of the Chinese economic model.
For example, Stephen Green in, “Is the ‘Age of America’ Really at an End?” highlights China’s fundamental flaws, its weak yuan and GDP, the continuing poverty of its people, its dearth of close friends in the international community, and its ecological disaster caused in large part by China’s inexorable pursuit of prosperity.
Green concedes significant Chinese strengths, notably its $3 trillion foreign currency reserves, (much of which represents ownership of America), and President Deng Xiaoping’s capitalistic invocation to China’s masses to get out there and get rich! http://bit.ly/eQdgBo
Juxtapose those reserves and that mandate against China’s unprecedented military build-up, against our out-of-control budget deficits and national debt and President Obama’s embarrassment of riches and commitment to sharing our wealth and going green at all costs and using stimuli to win votes and throw in the collapse of the American dollar and Stephen Green’s hypothesis that things aren’t all that bad borders on the absurd.
The IMF, which holds huge gold reserves and is funded in large part by the United States–to the tune of over $100 billion at last count–isn’t necessarily predicting America’s demise. The end of our ascendancy, our world economic dominance which defines greatness, and The Age of America, yes, but not our death.
What is important to remember is that great nations, great empires, have a life expectancy averaging 200 years.
America’s “Age” as a dominant nation has actually lasted less than a century. By that measurement, we should endure, prosper, and dominate for at least another century. That, however, does not factor in a president who views our country as a capitalistic leech which has bled dry the have-not nations of the world and which should therefore share and deplete our wealth in the interests of sharing.
Factoring in Obama, the IMF prognostication is generous. We should become second or third rate before the end of his second term. Thinking otherwise is tantamount to whistling in the dark. The only thing that accomplishes is dark whistling.