"Straight from the shoulder " by Toshio Masuda December 17, 2008
( Free of charge to the people I met)
The 21st Century, and the End of History as we have Known it
The history of the human race through the 20th century was truly a saga of war. Nations possessed cultural, traditional, religious, ideological and philosophical identities in which the peoples of those states took pride, right along with the patriotism they felt for their national flags, anthems and other symbols. Wars were waged as struggles for total hegemony, while spearheading those battles was politics. The history of politics and government, in other words, has indeed been the history of war. Through the end of the 20th century, it was political forces that championed nation states.
What Does President-elect Obama Symbolize?
Barack Obama is a man who was chosen to occupy the office of U.S. President
from the “masses.” In much the same way that the masses have no clear
identity, President-elect Obama is also difficult to define. He is not
a member of the elite. On the contrary, he is a product of the “ruled”
class that has been governed and “provided for” by the elite for so long.
A reversal in the ruling foundation of an entire country, let alone the
U.S., the nation wielding with the greatest impact in the world, is nothing
less than a full-blown revolution.
From “Nation” to “Infrastructure”
When the elite administer the government, the nation itself is the core
focus, with politics carried out in proactive fashion on the basis of clearly
defined objectives and strategies. In instances when politics is entrusted
to representatives of the masses, the sense of independence vanishes from
the government, which becomes subordinate. The political forces of a nation
without an independent identity in place will no longer pursue dominance,
and instead turn to international emphasis and cooperation. The economy
of a country without identity shifts from market guidance to market collaboration.
The driving force is drained from political and economic endeavor, strengthening
the degree of dependence on other countries.
The End of the Dollar’s Reign
Throughout the 20th century, American hegemony was largely supported by the strength of the dollar. Until recently the dollar was the core international currency, a situation that went a long way toward enabling the U.S. to push its debts onto the shoulders of the rest of the world. In other words, because the dollar was the currency used for international transactions, the greater the amount of international trade conducted between countries other than the U.S., the greater was the demand for dollars. Under that arrangement, Washington was able to print dollars equal to that demand growth, and in doing so pay off its own debts.
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Written by Toshio Masuda