Who is the World's Superpower?

Who is the World's Superpower?

Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 16th, 2012, 12:16 pm #1

Who is the world's "Superpower" country?
The United States, ofcourse, everyone knows that!
Or is it?

Not anymore according to this survey from Pew Research.

Pew asked people in different countries who the world's economic "Superpower" was:



If you total up the figures- surprise- most of the world thinks China is now the World's Superpower.



Say it ain't so Joe.
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Bob
Bob

June 17th, 2012, 12:52 pm #2

At the rate their economy is growing and at the pace they are beginning to expand and modernize their military (including with technologies bought or stolen from the West), China will overtake U.S. as the #1 economy, and their military will become the dominant presence in the Pacific. As this occurs, countries in that region that have traditionally allied with U.S. will be persuaded to make Communist China their primary ally. In disagreements between U.S. and China, those countries will increasingly side with China, out of necessity for their existence. And Taiwan will be absorbed back into China, and South Korea will feel (be) on shaky ground, and likely also kowtowing to the wishes of China.
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Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 17th, 2012, 2:13 pm #3

Yes, I know Bob. I recognized years ago that the days of the US being top dog were numbered. A lot of Americans refuse to believe it, many think it's heresy to say it- but I think the US has been in decline since the 1970s when our manufacturing base began moving overseas- mostly to China. The development of our space program in the 1960s was really our last great achievement. It's been downhill ever since.
. . . . .
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Anonymous
Anonymous

June 17th, 2012, 9:02 pm #4

I will spare others the reminiscing that you and I tend to do regarding America during the 50's and 60's. Suffice to say that we felt much safer and more together as citizenry than we do today. Today, we cannot seem to get enough of "diversity" and seeing only differences.
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Bob
Bob

June 17th, 2012, 9:03 pm #5

That was me -- too quick on draw
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Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 18th, 2012, 2:38 am #6

I will spare others the reminiscing that you and I tend to do regarding America during the 50's and 60's. Suffice to say that we felt much safer and more together as citizenry than we do today. Today, we cannot seem to get enough of "diversity" and seeing only differences.
I think we have discussed how things use to be better so many times that we should rename Potpourri "The Nostalgia forum". I try to be optimistic about things, tell myself that the problems the country has are temporary and things will be good again but it's hard to see how.

I was thinking about this driving home from my younger daughters this afternoon where we (my son and daughters) got together for a Father's day cook-out. I was thinking how lucky they were to have good jobs and successful careers when had they been born even ten years later it would have been more difficult for them. And the kids graduating from school now really have it bad- finding a job- and making decent money to afford things that we took for granted. I was watching some being interviewed during a recent college graduation and I could tell things were different now- even through the usual joy of graduation you could sense their apprehension of a difficult and uncertain future.


. . . . .
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Bob
Bob

June 18th, 2012, 3:33 pm #7

While I am more pessimistic than a lot of people, I have my times when I am more hopeful (or try to be). I do believe that most things tend to run in cycles, the good and the bad, so things probably only get so bad before they improve again (just as things that are going atypically good tend to decline with time). My grandfather always used to tell me, "It's a great life if you don't weaken." I suppose that meant there will be trials to endure, so try to be strong through them while you can.

I mentioned here before my accountant friend, who claims that things are not nearly as bad as many Americans make them out to be. He says, "What do you really need to live? Not want, but really need? If things were really bad, the average American would struggle to get enough food to eat, enough clean water, adequate shelter from the elements, and would be at risk for injury or death from violence around them. But very few Americans lack these things. To the contrary, most people still have a car to drive, cable TV, electronic gadgets to play with, they eat out rather than cook at home, they go out for entertainment. Amerricans are spoiled. We think we are deprived because we can't afford all the luxuries, but more than our basic needs are already met."

I respond to him that life should be more than being satisfied not to starve or freeze to death today. The gadgets and distractions we pursue are pale substitutes for what we all really want -- hope: peace of mind, connections with people, and the feeling that our lives are meaningful. And those things are what is taking a big hit these days.
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Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 19th, 2012, 12:16 pm #8

The economy cycles- right?- so good times will return- like the bad 1930s was followed by the prosperous '50s & '60s. So it will happen again- right?- or maybe not. History doesn't really repeat itself because the world is a different place than it was. China was no competition in the 1950s. We were not dependent on foreign oil. Computers and automation were just beginning. Now computer and modern technology have made it possible for businesses to do the same work with less people- a lot less. This is why unemployment is remaining high- companies don't need so many people anymore. So the number of jobs being created are not keeping pace with the number of people needing them. Well China is not going to disappear, computers are not going to disappear, the things that have killed our jobs are going to continue to kill them. So what's the solution?
. . . . .
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Marseil
Marseil

July 16th, 2012, 4:46 pm #9

Here is a GDP evaluation from year 1:


This shows that demography drives GDP when everything is equal, all agrarian economies, all industrial, or now, all post-industrial. China and India have been the two highest GDP from the very beginning as they were the most populous. CHanges began in the xix century, when Britain and the Netherlands were the first to start the industrial revolution, soon followed by other Europeans. Also colonization played an essential role in creating imbalances for the profit of the European powers. Then, comes WWII, with the US supremacy.

What is happening now, is just a return to the natural economic world balance, given by demography. The current crisis is just the beginning of our (The Western world) fall. A shrinking economy, a drop in positions in word leadership, a loss of influence on world politics will not happen painlessly.

This is just the beginning.

Marseil.
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Bob
Bob

July 16th, 2012, 5:45 pm #10

I think something such as quality of life, standard of living, etc. is also a very appropriate way to compare the relative prosperity of various countries. Yes, India and China amass a large GDP because they have so very many people. But if you look beneath the top layers or classes in those countries, the average Indian or Chinese does not live a life comparable to their counterparts in the West. I think the large populations of such countries are a hinderance as well as a help. So long as China and India have such huge populations, they will struggle to provide sufficient food, water, medical care, shelter, education and social welfare to lift the standard of living of the bulk of their people. I don't think you can really say a country is prosperous if the average citizen is in a struggle to obtain life necessities.

Are India and China improving on that count? It appears so (more so for China than India). Maybe, as Nat stated, the improvement in wages in those countries may not only help their people, but it could also help stem the tide of job losses in Western countries.
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