The Rise and Decline of Nations

Discussion in 'Politics' started by pinkwaxfish, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. pinkwaxfish

    pinkwaxfish Rookie

    Dec 1, 2012
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    A good book for people who are into politics and policy: The Rise and Decline of Nations by Mancur Olson. In that book, he argues convincingly that there are predictable patterns in a stable society, the most important of which is the rise of interest groups. He shows how, throughout history, stable societies become places where powerful interests collude to make the government work in their favor, and how, eventually, those interests cause the nation to decline.

    Here's the sad part. Thus far, in history, once a nation enters the downward portion of its life cycle, there is no getting out of it until a destabilizing event shakes up the powerful interests. For Rome and Great Britain, there was a long, slow, steady decline. For Germany and Japan, there were catastrophic ends for their interests in WW2 and the nations had a rebirth.

    I think the US is in rapid, irreversible decline that can only be remedied with some massive shakup event. That can be something catastrophic like the inevitable destruction of the dollar, or something more positive like a truly destabilizing technology (artificial intelligence or something).
  2. waltky

    waltky Wise ol' monkey Supporting Member

    Feb 6, 2011
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    Okolona, KY
    Granny says, "Dat's right - `cause dem rich folks sellin' our jobs out an' dem Wall St. bankers sellin' homeowners out an' dem politicians sellin' the public out...
    Poll: Majority Sees America as Declining Power, Facing Economic Difficulty and Rising Crime Rates
    January 2, 2013 - A majority of Americans believe America is a declining power, according to the USA Today/Gallup poll.
    See also:

    'We Dug the Hole of the Deficit Deeper'
    January 2, 2013 - Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R.-S.C.) defends his vote against the “fiscal cliff” deal saying, “We didn’t fix the problem last night. We prevented ourselves from going over the fiscal cliff. We dug the hole of the deficit deeper.”
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    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013

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